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The word shallow has two opposing meanings: on the one hand "very shallow depth", on the other hand "very great depth". It is thus a Janus word (antonym).

Shallow depth

The Krausaue near Rüdesheim , a rocky shoal in the Upper Rhine , rises above the water level in places

A shallow (with privatory UN ) is an area of a body of water with little depth . This importance has been documented since the 10th century. The designation can also refer to the corresponding elevation in the water.

In shipping , a shoal is an area that poses a risk to shipping due to its shallower depth. In addition to the dangers of touching the bottom and getting stuck , a dangerously high swell can also form at shallows up to ground lakes . Shallows are often marked by floating sea marks. Dangerous shallows are also shown on nautical charts if their exact position is not yet known (see Vigia ).

Great depth

A very great depth is also referred to as a shoal (with increasing shallowness ). This meaning has only been documented since the end of the 18th century and was initially Upper German . The prefix un- has an accentuating and reinforcing effect, similar to the words vastness or vast sum ( augmentative formation ).

See also

Web links

Wiktionary: Shallow  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations

Individual evidence

  1. Duden : Shallow
  2. Duden online: Prefix Un- , meaning 1.
  3. a b shoal. In: Digital dictionary of the German language .
  4. Duden online: Prefix Un- , meaning 4.
  5. ^ Johann Christian August Heyse ; Karl Wilhelm Ludwig Heyse : Concise dictionary of the German language. Part 2, Magdeburg 1849, p. 1473 ( ).