from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

A Koog (plural: polders), also polder or Groden , refers to a on the North Sea coast of Germany , Denmark and the Netherlands and in Belgium by diking the natural marine influence entzogenes and subsequently actively dehydrating flat marshland . This form of land reclamation also takes place in adjacent estuary areas , provided that these are also influenced by the tides . As a rule, protection is provided by embankment .

Westerkoog (Dithmarschen): Typical Koog landscape in February 2004


In its original German spelling Kog , the word means "high land in front of the dike". So it is in neuniederländischen word kaag been preserved, from which it during the Deichbaues was borrowed. Koog now means "diked land". From the Dithmarsch word koch (15th / 16th century) it came into the Danish language as kog . In the North Frisian language it is called kuch . The use of the poet Michael Richey for the year 1755 can be proven in the spelling Koog . Around 1700 today's Cuxhaven was still called Koogshaven .


In the Netherlands and in bordering parts of East Frisia , the term polder (Low German: bollard ) is mostly used as a synonym for the diked land . which is said to be related to the word Pfuhl . In the eastern part of East Friesland and in the Oldenburger Land there is still the name Groden .


The term Groden old Frisian 'grōde' (cf. also English to grow, nied. Groeien = "grow", "grow on") denotes new land areas washed up by the sea. Sediments deposited in the tide from the sea on the Watt from. After reaching a certain outdoor Groden height that occurs embankment . Encircled land becomes interior grazing. The fertile soil is compacted by drainage and can sink to a level below sea level over time. The rising sea level in front of the dyke and the sagging of the drained former sea areas behind the dyke therefore lead to an ever higher position of the newly diked marshland with several dikes. This creates a so-called polder staircase .

The part of the name Groden is mostly found in Frisian areas, for example in Wilhelmshaven in its districts Altengroden, Neuengroden and Fedderwardergroden , the local Heppenser , Voslapper and Rüstersieler Groden, as well as in the surrounding area with Cäciliengroden , Petersgroden and Adelheidsgroden. All of these areas were created a shorter (20th century) or longer time ago by dike and flushing, as is the case with polders.


(Pump) mills on the dike of the Overwaard-Polder near Kinderdijk

Since a koog or polder is often lower than the water level of the adjacent waters, the inland has to be constantly drained. The purpose of the drainage accept outfall , sluices , pumping stations and water pumps .

Nowadays the pumps work with motor power, in pre-industrial times up to partly high industrialization they were operated with wind power ( wind pump ). The groups of windmills on the dykes of the Rhine Delta - a symbol of the Netherlands - are old water pumps.

River kays

In addition to the extraction of land from the sea, rivers are also referred to as kogs or polders. Most of them are former wetlands that are now used for agriculture . A floodplain or a rift becomes a completely different ecosystem, the origin of which is only reminiscent of the name, as can be seen in the example of the Oderbruch .

On the Rhine , Elbe and Oder , these areas are also used for flood protection by means of floods ( → main article: polders ). If the flood has drained sufficiently, the water is pumped out of the polders and can be used again for agriculture until the next flood.

Until the 1950s, kays were created for economic reasons to reclaim land, since then coastal protection has been the focus: "Island protection is coastal protection".

North German Köge

On the west coast of Schleswig-Holstein and the Lower Elbe , over 230 kays have been won over the centuries. The oldest kings are in Eiderstedt ; they date from the 11th century. After the Burchardi flood of 1634, there was an increasing number of octroyed kegs .
Well-known kings are for example:


Sometimes already populated and dense marshland had to be abandoned after storm surges. The land was initially diked with new or relocated dikes and could often only be diked again after repeated efforts.


  • Harry Kunz, Albert Panten : The Köge of North Frisia. With map. Nordfriisk Instituut, Bräist / Bredstedt 1997, ISBN 3-88007-251-5 ( Nordfriisk Instituut 144).

Web links

Commons : Polder in Germany  - Collection of images, videos and audio files
Wiktionary: Koog  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Friedrich Kluge : Etymological dictionary . De Gruyter, Berlin 1975, Lemma Kog.
  2. ^ Friedrich Kluge: Etymological dictionary . De Gruyter, Berlin 1975, Lemma Polder.
  3. Sande Climate Path, page 22 (PDF; 1.5 MB), accessed on May 20, 2013
  4. ^ A b Klaus-Joachim Lorenzen-Schmidt , Ortwin Pelc: Schleswig-Holstein Lexicon . Wachholtz, Neumünster 2006, Lemma Koog.