AskDefine | Define marsh

Dictionary Definition



1 low-lying wet land with grassy vegetation; usually is a transition zone between land and water; "thousands of acres of marshland"; "the fens of eastern England" [syn: marshland, fen, fenland]
2 United States painter (1898-1954) [syn: Reginald Marsh]
3 New Zealand writer of detective stories (1899-1982) [syn: Ngaio Marsh]

User Contributed Dictionary



  • /mɑɹʃ/ /mArS/ a US
  • /mɑː(ɹ)ʃ/ /mA:(r)S/ a UK


  1. An area of low, wet land, often with tall grass.

Coordinate terms


area of low, wet land

See also


  • Oxford-Paravia Concise - Dizionario Inglese-Italiano e Italiano-Inglese (in collaborazione con Oxford University Press). Edited by Maria Cristina Bareggi. Torino: Paravia, 2003. ISBN 8839551107. Online version here

Extensive Definition

In geography, a marsh, or morass, is a type of wetland which is subject to frequent or continuous inundation. Typically a marsh features grasses, rushes, reeds, typhas, sedges, and other herbaceous plants (possibly with low-growing woody plants) in a context of shallow water. A marsh is different from a swamp, which has a greater proportion of open water surface, and is generally deeper than a marsh. In North America, the term swamp is used for wetland dominated by trees rather than grasses and low herbs.
The water of a marsh can be fresh, brackish or saline. Coastal marshes may be associated with estuaries and along waterways between coastal barrier islands and the inner coast. The estuarine marsh, or tidal marsh, is often based on soils consisting of sandy bottoms or bay muds. An example is the Tantramar Marsh of eastern Canada.
Below water decomposition processes often produce marsh gas, which may through self-ignition manifest as Will o' the wisps (aka. Jack-a-lanterns or spirites).
Marshes are critically important wildlife habitats, often serving as breeding grounds for a wide variety of animal life.
Constructed wetlands featuring surface-flow design are usually in the form of a marsh.


See also

Reference line notes

External links

marsh in Arabic: أهوار
marsh in Bulgarian: Блато
marsh in Catalan: Aiguamoll
marsh in Danish: Marsk
marsh in German: Marsch (Schwemmland)
marsh in Spanish: Marisma
marsh in Persian: مانداب
marsh in French: Marais
marsh in Western Frisian: Sompe
marsh in Ido: Marsho
marsh in Icelandic: Mýri
marsh in Hebrew: אדמת ביצה
marsh in Hungarian: Mocsár
marsh in Dutch: Moeras
marsh in Japanese: 沼
marsh in Norwegian: Marsk
marsh in Narom: Mathais
marsh in Uighur: سازلىق
marsh in Polish: Bagno
marsh in Portuguese: Marisma
marsh in Russian: Марши
marsh in Swedish: Kärr
marsh in Turkish: Bataklık

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

bog, cesspool, cloaca, cloaca maxima, drain, dump, fen, garbage dump, marshland, mire, morass, quag, quagmire, septic tank, sewer, sink, slough, sump, swamp, swampland
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