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The Rhine
Rhine
(Latin: Rhenus, Romansh: Rein, German: Rhein, French: le Rhin,[1] Dutch: Rijn) is a European river that begins in the Swiss canton of Graubünden
Graubünden
in the southeastern Swiss Alps, forms part of the Swiss-Liechtenstein, Swiss-Austrian, Swiss-German and then the Franco-German border, then flows through the German Rhineland
Rhineland
and the Netherlands
Netherlands
and eventually empties into the North Sea. The largest city on the Rhine
Rhine
is Cologne, Germany, with a population of more than 1,050,000 people. It is the second-longest river in Central and Western Europe (after the Danube), at about 1,230 km (760 mi),[note 2][note 1] with an average discharge of about 2,900 m3/s (100,000 cu ft/s). The Rhine
Rhine
and the Danube
Danube
formed most of the northern inland frontier of the Roman Empire
Roman Empire
and, since those days, the Rhine
Rhine
has been a vital and navigable waterway carrying trade and goods deep inland. Its importance as a waterway in the Holy Roman Empire
Roman Empire
is supported by the many castles and fortifications built along it. In the modern era, it has become a symbol of German nationalism.

Contents

1 Name 2 Geography

2.1 Headwaters and sources

2.1.1 Sources 2.1.2 Anterior Rhine
Anterior Rhine
and Posterior Rhine

2.2 Alpine Rhine 2.3 Lake Constance

2.3.1 Obersee 2.3.2 Seerhein 2.3.3 Untersee

2.4 High Rhine 2.5 Upper Rhine 2.6 Middle Rhine 2.7 Lower Rhine 2.8 Delta

3 Geologic history

3.1 Alpine orogeny 3.2 Stream capture 3.3 End of the last ice age 3.4 Holocene delta

4 Cultural history

4.1 Antiquity 4.2 Medieval and modern history

5 Lists of features

5.1 Cities on the Rhine 5.2 Countries and borders 5.3 Bridges 5.4 Former distributaries 5.5 Canals

6 See also 7 Notes and references

7.1 Notes 7.2 References 7.3 Bibliography

8 External links

Name[edit] The variants of the name of the Rhine
Rhine
in modern languages are all derived from the Gaulish name Rēnos, which was adapted in Roman-era geography (1st century BC) as Greek Ῥῆνος (Rhēnos), Latin Rhenus.[note 3] The spelling with Rh- in English Rhine
Rhine
as well as in German Rhein and French Rhin is due to the influence of Greek orthography, while the vocalisation -i- is due to the Proto-Germanic
Proto-Germanic
adoption of the Gaulish name as *Rīnaz, via Old Frankish
Old Frankish
giving Old English
Old English
Rín,[3] Old High German Rīn, early Middle Dutch (c. 1200) Rijn (then also spelled Ryn or Rin).[4] The diphthong in modern German Rhein (also adopted in Romansh Rein, Rain) is a Central German
Central German
development of the early modern period, the Alemannic name Rī(n) retaining the older vocalism,[note 4] as does Ripuarian Rhing, while Palatine has diphthongized Rhei, Rhoi. Spanish is with French in adopting the Germanic vocalism Rin-, while Italian, Occitan and Portuguese retain the Latin Ren-. The Gaulish name Rēnos ( Proto-Celtic or pre-Celtic[note 5] *Reinos) belongs to a class of river names built from the PIE root *rei- "to move, flow, run", also found in other names such as the Reno in Italy.[note 6] The grammatical gender of the Celtic name (as well as of its Greek and Latin adaptation) is masculine, and the name remains masculine in German, Dutch and French. The Old English
Old English
river name was variously inflected as masculine or feminine; and its Old Icelandic adoption was inflected as feminine.[5] Geography[edit]

The length of the Rhine
Rhine
is conventionally measured in "Rhine-kilometers" (Rheinkilometer), a scale introduced in 1939 which runs from the Old Rhine
Rhine
Bridge at Constance
Constance
(0 km) to Hoek van Holland (1036.20 km). The river is significantly shortened from its natural course due to a number of canalisation projects completed in the 19th and 20th century.[note 7] The "total length of the Rhine", to the inclusion of Lake Constance
Lake Constance
and the Alpine Rhine
Alpine Rhine
is more difficult to measure objectively; it was cited as 1,232 kilometres (766 miles) by the Dutch Rijkswaterstaat in 2010.[note 1] Its course is conventionally divided as follows:

length section avg. discharge elevation left tributaries (incomplete) right tributaries (incomplete)

76 km[remark 1] The various sources and headwaters forming the Anterior and Posterior Rhine
Rhine
within Grisons, Switzerland 114 m3/s[6] 584 m Aua Russein, Schmuèr[7] Rein da Tuma, Rein da Curnera, Rein da Medel, Rein da Sumvitg (Rein da Vigliuts), Glogn
Glogn
(Valser Rhine), Rabiusa, Rein Posteriur/Hinterrhein (right: Ragn da Ferrera, Albula/Alvra (left: Gelgia; right: Landwasser))[7]

c. 90 km The Alpine Rhine
Alpine Rhine
running through the Grisonian and St. Gall Rhine Valley (partly forming parts of the Liechtenstein-Swiss and Austrian-Swiss border

400 m Tamina[8] Plessur, Landquart,[8] Ill

c. 60 km Lake Constance, including the short channel called Seerhein
Seerhein
at Constance, connecting Obersee and Untersee

395 m Alter Rhein
Alter Rhein
(Rheintaler Binnenkanal), Goldach[9] Dornbirner Ach, Bregenzer Ach, Leiblach, Argen, Schussen, Rotach, Brunnisaach, Lipbach, Seefelder Aach, Radolfzeller Aach[9]

c. 150 km[remark 2] The High Rhine
High Rhine
from the exit of Lake Constance
Lake Constance
to Basel, forming a substantial part of the German-Swiss border 1,300 m3/s[10] 246 m Thur, Töss, Glatt, Aare,[remark 3] Ergolz, Birs[11] Wutach[11]

362 km[remark 4] The Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
from Basel
Basel
to Bingen forming the Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
Plain and in its upper course the Franco-German border

79 m Ill, Moder, Lauter, Nahe Wiese, Elz, Kinzig, Rench, Acher, Murg, Alb, Pfinz, Neckar, Main

159 km[remark 5] The Middle Rhine
Middle Rhine
between Bingen and either Bonn
Bonn
or Cologne
Cologne
is entirely within Germany, passing the Rhine
Rhine
Gorge;

45 m Moselle, Nette, Ahr Lahn, Wied, Sieg

177 km[remark 6] The Lower Rhine
Lower Rhine
downstream of Bonn, passing the Lower Rhine
Lower Rhine
region of Northrhine-Westphalia

11 m Erft Wupper, Düssel, Ruhr, Emscher, Lippe

c. 50 km The Nederrijn
Nederrijn
or "Nether Rhine" (shortened course of Oude Rijn within the Rhine–Meuse–Scheldt delta
Rhine–Meuse–Scheldt delta
in the Netherlands 2,900 m3/s[remark 7] 0 m Meuse Oude IJssel, Berkel

^ length of the Anterior Rhine
Anterior Rhine
(including Rein da Medel) ^ Constance
Constance
to Basel: Rheinkilometer 0–167. ^ At the confluence of Aare
Aare
and Rhine, the Aare
Aare
at 560 m³/s carries more water on average than the Rhine
Rhine
at 439 m³/s, so that hydrographically speaking the Rhine
Rhine
is a right tributary of the Aare. ^ Basel
Basel
to Bingen: Rheinkilometer 167–529. ^ Bingen to Cologne: Rheinkilometer 529–688 (159 km); there is no unambiguous definition of the Middle Rhine, some would prefer to have it begin further upstream, at the mouth of the Main. ^ Rheinkilometer 688–865.5 (177.5 km) from Cologne
Cologne
to the Dutch-German border ^ the total discharge of the Rhine
Rhine
is subject to significant fluctuations, and average values cited vary between sources; the total discharge taken into account here consists of: Maasmond: 1450 m3/s, Haringvliet: 820 m3/s, Den Oever: 310 m3/s, Kornwerderzand: 220 m3/s, IJmuiden: 9 m3/s, Scheldt–Rhine Canal 10 m3/s

Headwaters and sources[edit] Main article: Sources of the Rhine Sources[edit]

Lake Toma, seen from the upstream end

The Rhine
Rhine
carries its name without distinctive accessories only from the confluence of the Rein Anteriur/ Vorderrhein
Vorderrhein
and Rein Posteriur/Hinterrhein next to Reichenau in Tamins. Above this point is the extensive catchment of the headwaters of the Rhine. It belongs almost exclusively to the Swiss canton of Graubünden, ranging from Saint-Gotthard Massif
Saint-Gotthard Massif
in the west via one valley lying in Ticino and Italy
Italy
in the south to the Flüela Pass
Flüela Pass
in the east. Traditionally, Lake Toma
Lake Toma
near the Oberalp Pass
Oberalp Pass
in the Gotthard region is seen as the source of the Anterior Rhine
Anterior Rhine
and the Rhine
Rhine
as a whole. The Posterior Rhine
Posterior Rhine
rises in the Rheinwald
Rheinwald
below the Rheinwaldhorn. Anterior Rhine
Anterior Rhine
and Posterior Rhine[edit] Main articles: Vorderrhein
Vorderrhein
and Hinterrhein (river)

The confluence of the Anterior Rhine
Anterior Rhine
to the lower left and the Posterior Rhine
Posterior Rhine
in the back, forming the Alpine Rhine
Alpine Rhine
to the left next to Reichenau

The source of the river is generally considered north of Lai da Tuma/ Tomasee
Tomasee
on Rein Anteriur/Vorderrhein,[12] although its southern tributary Rein da Medel
Rein da Medel
is actually longer before its confluence with the Anterior Rhine
Anterior Rhine
near Disentis.

The Anterior Rhine
Anterior Rhine
(Romansh: Rein Anteriur, German: Vorderrhein) springs from Lai da Tuma/Tomasee, near the Oberalp Pass
Oberalp Pass
and passes the impressive Ruinaulta
Ruinaulta
formed by the largest visible rock slide in the alps, the Flims Rockslide.

The Posterior Rhine
Posterior Rhine
(Romansh: Rein Posteriur, German: Hinterrhein) starts from the Paradies Glacier, near the Rheinwaldhorn. One of its tributaries, the Reno di Lei, drains the Valle di Lei on politically Italian territory. After three main valleys separated by the two gorges, Roflaschlucht
Roflaschlucht
and Viamala, it reaches Reichenau in Tamins.

Map of the Alpine Rhine

The Anterior Rhine
Anterior Rhine
arises from numerous source streams in the upper Surselva
Surselva
and flows in an easterly direction. One source is Lai da Tuma (2,345 m (7,694 ft))[13] with the Rein da Tuma, which is usually indicated as source of the Rhine, flowing through it. Into it flow tributaries from the south, some longer, some equal in length, such as the Rein da Medel, the Rein da Maighels, and the Rein da Curnera. The Cadlimo Valley in the canton of Ticino is drained by the Reno di Medel, which crosses the geomorphologic Alpine main ridge from the south.[note 8] All streams in the source area are partially, sometimes completely, captured and sent to storage reservoirs for the local hydro-electric power plants. The culminating point of the Anterior Rhine's drainage basin is the Piz Russein
Piz Russein
of the Tödi massif of the Glarus Alps
Glarus Alps
at 3,613 metres (11,854 ft) above sea level. It starts with the creek Aua da Russein (lit.: "Water of the Russein").[14] In its lower course the Anterior Rhine
Anterior Rhine
flows through a gorge named Ruinaulta
Ruinaulta
(Flims Rockslide). The whole stretch of the Anterior Rhine to the Alpine Rhine
Alpine Rhine
confluence next to Reichenau in Tamins
Tamins
is accompanied by a long-distance hiking trail called Senda Sursilvana.[15] The Posterior Rhine
Posterior Rhine
flows first east-northeast, then north. It flows through the three valleys named Rheinwald, Schams
Schams
and Domleschg-Heinzenberg. The valleys are separated by the Rofla Gorge and Viamala
Viamala
Gorge. Its sources are located in the Adula Alps (Rheinwaldhorn, Rheinquellhorn, and Güferhorn). The Avers Rhine
Avers Rhine
joins from the south. One of its headwaters, the Reno di Lei (stowed in the Lago di Lei), is partially located in Italy. Near Sils the Posterior Rhine
Posterior Rhine
is joined by the Albula, from the east, from the Albula Pass
Albula Pass
region. The Albula draws its water mainly from the Landwasser
Landwasser
with the Dischmabach
Dischmabach
as the largest source stream, but almost as much from the Gelgia, which comes down from the Julier Pass. Numerous larger and smaller tributary rivers bear the name of the Rhine
Rhine
or equivalent in various Romansh idioms like Rein or Ragn. Examples:

Anterior Rhine
Anterior Rhine
area: Rein Anteriur/Vorderrhein, Rein da Medel, Rein da Tuma, Rein da Curnera, Rein da Maighels, Rein da Cristallina, Rein da Nalps, Rein da Plattas, Rein da Sumvitg, Rein da Vigliuts, Valser Rhine Posterior Rhine
Posterior Rhine
basin: Rein Posteriur/Hinterrhein, Reno di Lei, Madrischer Rhein, Avers Rhine, Jufer Rhein Albula- Landwasser
Landwasser
area: In the Dischma
Dischma
valley, near Davos, far east of the Rhine, there's a place called Am Rin ("Upon Rhine"). A tributary of the Dischma
Dischma
is called Riner Tälli. Nearby, on the other side of the Sertig, is the Rinerhorn.

Alpine Rhine[edit] Main article: Alpine Rhine

The Rhine
Rhine
between Sargans
Sargans
(CH, left) and Balzers
Balzers
(Liechtenstein, right) with the Gonzen
Gonzen
(1,829 m (6,001 ft), left), the Girrenspitz
Girrenspitz
(2,099 m (6,886 ft)) in the back, and the Maziferchopf (855 m (2,805 ft)) to the right

See also: Rheintal Next to Reichenau in Tamins
Tamins
the Anterior Rhine
Anterior Rhine
and the Posterior Rhine join and form the Alpine Rhine. The river makes a distinctive turn to the north near Chur. This section is nearly 86 km long, and descends from a height of 599 m to 396 m. It flows through a wide glacial Alpine valley known as the Rhine
Rhine
Valley (German: Rheintal). Near Sargans
Sargans
a natural dam, only a few metres high, prevents it from flowing into the open Seeztal valley and then through Lake Walen
Lake Walen
and Lake Zurich
Lake Zurich
into the Aare. The Alpine Rhine
Alpine Rhine
begins in the westernmost part of the Swiss canton of Graubünden, and later forms the border between Switzerland
Switzerland
to the west and Liechtenstein
Liechtenstein
and later Austria
Austria
to the east. As an effect of human work, it empties into Lake Constance
Lake Constance
on Austrian territory and not on the border that follows its old natural river bed. The mouth of the Rhine
Rhine
into Lake Constance
Lake Constance
forms an inland delta. The delta is delimited in the west by the Alter Rhein
Alter Rhein
("Old Rhine") and in the east by a modern canalized section. Most of the delta is a nature reserve and bird sanctuary. It includes the Austrian towns of Gaißau, Höchst and Fußach. The natural Rhine
Rhine
originally branched into at least two arms and formed small islands by precipitating sediments. In the local Alemannic dialect, the singular is pronounced "Isel" and this is also the local pronunciation of Esel ("Donkey"). Many local fields have an official name containing this element.

Alpine Rhine
Alpine Rhine
delta at Lake Constance

A regulation of the Rhine
Rhine
was called for, with an upper canal near Diepoldsau
Diepoldsau
and a lower canal at Fußach, in order to counteract the constant flooding and strong sedimentation in the western Rhine
Rhine
Delta. The Dornbirner Ach
Dornbirner Ach
had to be diverted, too, and it now flows parallel to the canalized Rhine
Rhine
into the lake. Its water has a darker color than the Rhine; the latter's lighter suspended load comes from higher up the mountains. It is expected that the continuous input of sediment into the lake will silt up the lake. This has already happened to the former Lake Tuggenersee. The cut-off Old Rhine
Rhine
at first formed a swamp landscape. Later an artificial ditch of about two km was dug. It was made navigable to the Swiss town of Rheineck. Lake Constance[edit]

Satellite image. In the center and on the right (i.e. to the east) the larger part of Lake Constance, called the Obersee, is visible, and it includes, in the lower right, the Delta of the Alpine Rhine. The northwesterly "finger" (on the top left) is Lake Überlingen, containing the island of Mainau. Below Lake Überlingen (also in the west) is the smaller Untersee, containing Reichenau Island. The Obersee and Untersee are connected by the four kilometers long Seerhein. On the left the High Rhine
High Rhine
can be seen.

Main article: Lake Constance Lake Constance
Lake Constance
consists of three bodies of water: the Obersee ("upper lake"), the Untersee ("lower lake"), and a connecting stretch of the Rhine, called the Seerhein
Seerhein
("Lake Rhine"). The lake is situated in Germany, Switzerland
Switzerland
and Austria
Austria
near the Alps. Specifically, its shorelines lie in the German states of Bavaria
Bavaria
and Baden-Württemberg, the Austrian state of Vorarlberg, and the Swiss cantons of Thurgau
Thurgau
and St. Gallen. The Rhine
Rhine
flows into it from the south following the Swiss-Austrian border. It is located at approximately 47°39′N 9°19′E / 47.650°N 9.317°E / 47.650; 9.317. Obersee[edit] Main article: Obersee (Lake Constance) The flow of cold, gray mountain water continues for some distance into the lake. The cold water flows near the surface and at first doesn't mix with the warmer, green waters of Upper Lake. But then, at the so-called Rheinbrech, the Rhine
Rhine
water abruptly falls into the depths because of the greater density of cold water. The flow reappears on the surface at the northern (German) shore of the lake, off the island of Lindau. The water then follows the northern shore until Hagnau am Bodensee. A small fraction of the flow is diverted off the island of Mainau
Mainau
into Lake Überlingen. Most of the water flows via the Constance
Constance
hopper into the Rheinrinne (" Rhine
Rhine
Gutter") and Seerhein. Depending on the water level, this flow of the Rhine
Rhine
water is clearly visible along the entire length of the lake. The Rhine
Rhine
carries very large amounts of debris into the lake.[note 9] In the mouth region, it is therefore necessary to permanently remove gravel by dredging. The large sediment loads are partly due to the extensive land improvements upstream. Three countries border the Obersee, namely Switzerland
Switzerland
in the south, Austria
Austria
in the southeast and the German states of Bavaria
Bavaria
in the northeast and Baden-Württemberg
Baden-Württemberg
in the north and northwest. Seerhein[edit] Main article: Seerhein

Distance markers along the Rhine
Rhine
indicate distances from this bridge in Constance

The 555km marker, downstream from the Lorelei

The Seerhein
Seerhein
is only four km long. It connects the Obersee with the 30 cm lower Untersee. Distance markers along the Rhine
Rhine
measure the distance from the bridge in the old city centre of Constance. For most of its length, the Seerhein
Seerhein
forms the border between Germany and Switzerland. The exception is the old city centre of Constance, on the Swiss side of the river. The Seerhein
Seerhein
emerged in the last thousands of years, when erosion caused the lake level to be lowered by about 10 metres. Previously, the two lakes formed a single lake, as the name still suggests. Untersee[edit] Main article: Untersee (Lake Constance) Like in the Obersee, the flow the Rhine
Rhine
can be traced in the Untersee. Here, too, the river water is hardly mixed with the lake water. The northern parts of the Untersee (Lake Zell and Gnadensee) remain virtually unaffected by the flow. The river traverses the southern, which, in isolation, is sometimes called Rhinesee ("Lake Rhine")., The Radolfzeller Aach
Radolfzeller Aach
adds large amounts of water from the Danube system to the Untersee. Reichenau Island
Reichenau Island
was formed at the same time as the Seerhein, when the water level was lowered to its current level. Lake Untersee is part of the border between Switzerland
Switzerland
and Germany, with Germany
Germany
on the north bank and Switzerland
Switzerland
on the south, except both sides are Swiss in Stein am Rhein, where the High Rhine
High Rhine
flows out of the lake.

High Rhine[edit] Main article: High Rhine

The High Rhine

The Rhine Falls
Rhine Falls
at Schaffhausen
Schaffhausen
(Switzerland)

The Rhine
Rhine
emerges from Lake Constance, flows generally westward, as the Hochrhein, passes the Rhine
Rhine
Falls, and is joined by its major tributary, the Aare. The Aare
Aare
more than doubles the Rhine's water discharge, to an average of nearly 1,000 m3/s (35,000 cu ft/s), and provides more than a fifth of the discharge at the Dutch border. The Aare
Aare
also contains the waters from the 4,274 m (14,022 ft) summit of Finsteraarhorn, the highest point of the Rhine
Rhine
basin. The Rhine
Rhine
roughly forms the German-Swiss border
German-Swiss border
from Lake Constance
Lake Constance
with the exceptions of the canton of Schaffhausen
Schaffhausen
and parts of the cantons of Zürich and Basel-Stadt, until it turns north at the so-called Rhine knee
Rhine knee
at Basel, leaving Switzerland. The High Rhine
High Rhine
begins in Stein am Rhein
Stein am Rhein
at the western end of the Untersee. Unlike the Alpine Rhine
Alpine Rhine
and Upper Rhine, it flows to the west. It falls from 395 m to 252 m. Some stretches of the High Rhine
High Rhine
between Stein am Rhein
Stein am Rhein
and Eglisau form the border between Switzerland
Switzerland
on the south bank and Germany
Germany
in the north. On other stretches, both sides are Swiss; in fact most of the Canton of Schaffhausen
Schaffhausen
is on the north bank. Between Eglisau and Basel, the High Rhine
Rhine
consistently forms the border. The Rhine Falls
Rhine Falls
are situated below Schaffhausen. It has an average water flow of 373 m³/s (mean summer discharge 700 m³/s) and is the second largest waterfall in Europe in terms of potential energy, after Dettifoss
Dettifoss
in Iceland. The High Rhine
High Rhine
is characterized by numerous dams. On the few remaining natural sections, there are still several rapids. Near Koblenz
Koblenz
in the Aargau, the Aare
Aare
joins the Rhine. With an average discharge of 557 m³/s, the Aare
Aare
is more voluminous than the Rhine, which has an average discharge of 439 m³/s. Nevertheless, the Alpine Rhine
Alpine Rhine
is considered the main branch, because it is longer.

Upper Rhine[edit] Main article: Upper Rhine

Rhein (front) and Rhine
Rhine
canal (back) near Breisach

In the centre of Basel, the first major city in the course of the stream, is located the " Rhine
Rhine
knee"; this is a major bend, where the overall direction of the Rhine
Rhine
changes from west to north. Here the High Rhine
High Rhine
ends. Legally, the Central Bridge is the boundary between High and Upper Rhine. The river now flows north as Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
through the Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
Plain, which is about 300 km long and up to 40 km wide. The most important tributaries in this area are the Ill below of Strasbourg, the Neckar
Neckar
in Mannheim
Mannheim
and the Main across from Mainz. In Mainz, the Rhine
Rhine
leaves the Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
Valley and flows through the Mainz
Mainz
Basin.

View of the Mainz
Mainz
Basin downstreams of Mainz, from Eltville
Eltville
and Erbach to Bingen

The southern half of the Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
forms the border between France (Alsace) and Germany
Germany
(Baden-Württemberg). The northern part forms the border between the German states of Rhineland-Palatinate
Rhineland-Palatinate
in the west on the one hand, and Baden-Württemberg
Baden-Württemberg
and Hesse
Hesse
on the other hand, in the east and north. A curiosity of this border line is that the parts of the city of Mainz
Mainz
on the right bank of the Rhine
Rhine
were given to Hesse
Hesse
by the occupying forces in 1945. The Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
was a significant cultural landscape in Central Europe already in antiquity and during the Middle Ages. Today, the Upper Rhine
Rhine
area hosts many important manufacturing and service industries, particularly in the centers Basel, Strasbourg
Strasbourg
and Mannheim-Ludwigshafen. Strasbourg
Strasbourg
is the seat of the European Parliament, and so one of the three European capitals is located on the Upper Rhine. The Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
region was changed significantly by a Rhine straightening program in the 19th Century. The rate of flow was increased and the ground water level fell significantly. Dead branches were removed by construction workers and the area around the river was made more habitable for humansflood plains as flooding decreased sharply. On the French side, the Grand Canal d' Alsace
Alsace
was dug, which carries a significant part of the river water, and all of the traffic. In some places, there are large compensation pools, for example, the huge Bassin de compensation de Plobsheim
Plobsheim
in Alsace.

The Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
has undergone significant human change since the 19th century. While it was slightly modified during the Roman occupation, it was not until the emergence of engineers such as Johann Gottfried Tulla that significant modernization efforts changed the shape of the river. Earlier work under Frederick the Great surrounded efforts to ease shipping and construct dams to serve coal transportation.[16] Tulla is considered to have domesticated the Upper Rhine, domestication that served goals such as reducing stagnant bogs that fostered waterborne diseases, making regions more habitable for human settlement, and reduce high frequency of flooded water. Not long before Tulla went to work on widening and straightening the river heavy floods had brought significant loss of life.[17] Four diplomatic treaties were signed among German state governments and French regions dealing with the changes proposed along the Rhine, one was "the Treaty for the Rectification of the Rhine
Rhine
flow from Neuberg to Dettenheim"(1817), which surrounded states such as Bourbon France
France
and the Bavarian Palatinate. Loops, oxbows, branches and islands were removed along the Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
so that there would be a present uniformity to the river.[18] The engineering of the Rhine
Rhine
was not without protest, farmers and fishermen had grave concerns about valuable fishing areas and farmland being lost. While some areas lost ground, other areas saw swamps and bogs be drained and turned into arable land.[19] Johann Tulla had the goal of shortening and straightening the Upper Rhine. Early engineering projects the Upper Rhine
Rhine
also had issues, with Tulla's project at one part of the river creating rapids, after the Rhine
Rhine
cut down from erosion to sheer rock.[20] Engineering along the Rhine
Rhine
eased flooding and made transportation along the river less cumbersome. These state projects were part of the advanced and technical progress efforts going on in the country alongside the industrial revolution. For the German state, to make the river more predictable was to ensure development projects could easily commence.[21] The section of the Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
downstream from Mainz
Mainz
is also known as the "Island Rhine". Here a number of river islands occur, locally known as "Rheinauen". Middle Rhine[edit] Main article: Middle Rhine The Rhine
Rhine
is the longest river in Germany. It is here that the Rhine encounters some more of its main tributaries, such as the Neckar, the Main and, later, the Moselle, which contributes an average discharge of more than 300 m3/s (11,000 cu ft/s). Northeastern France
France
drains to the Rhine
Rhine
via the Moselle; smaller rivers drain the Vosges
Vosges
and Jura Mountains
Jura Mountains
uplands. Most of Luxembourg
Luxembourg
and a very small part of Belgium
Belgium
also drain to the Rhine
Rhine
via the Moselle. As it approaches the Dutch border, the Rhine
Rhine
has an annual mean discharge of 2,290 m3/s (81,000 cu ft/s) and an average width of 400 m (1,300 ft).

Play media

Rhine
Rhine
by ship from Assmannshausen
Assmannshausen
to Rüdesheim (Video 2008)

Between Bingen am Rhein
Bingen am Rhein
and Bonn, the Middle Rhine
Middle Rhine
flows through the Rhine
Rhine
Gorge, a formation which was created by erosion. The rate of erosion equaled the uplift in the region, such that the river was left at about its original level while the surrounding lands raised. The gorge is quite deep and is the stretch of the river which is known for its many castles and vineyards. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site (2002) and known as "the Romantic Rhine", with more than 40 castles and fortresses from the Middle Ages
Middle Ages
and many quaint and lovely country villages. Until the early 1980s, industry was a major source of water pollution. Although many plants and factories can be found along the Rhine
Rhine
up into Switzerland, it is along the Lower Rhine
Lower Rhine
that the bulk of them are concentrated, as the river passes the major cities of Cologne, Düsseldorf
Düsseldorf
and Duisburg. Duisburg
Duisburg
is the home of Europe's largest inland port and functions as a hub to the sea ports of Rotterdam, Antwerp
Antwerp
and Amsterdam. The Ruhr, which joins the Rhine
Rhine
in Duisburg, is nowadays a clean river, thanks to a combination of stricter environmental controls, a transition from heavy industry to light industry and cleanup measures, such as the reforestation of Slag and brownfields. The Ruhr
Ruhr
currently provides the region with drinking water. It contributes 70 m3/s (2,500 cu ft/s) to the Rhine. Other rivers in the Ruhr
Ruhr
Area, above all, the Emscher, still carry a considerable degree of pollution.

Between Strasbourg
Strasbourg
and Kehl 

Bridge at Karlsruhe 

Aerial photo between Eltville
Eltville
and Bingen 

Marksburg
Marksburg
near Koblenz, built in 1231 

The Rhine
Rhine
in Cologne, Germany 

Rhine
Rhine
at Düsseldorf 

View of the Middle Rhine
Middle Rhine
Valley and Burg Katz, in the background Lorelei

The Mainz
Mainz
Basin ends in Bingen am Rhein; the Rhine
Rhine
continues as "Middle Rhine" into the Rhine Gorge
Rhine Gorge
in the Rhenish Slate Mountains. In this sections the river falls from 77.4 m above sea level to 50.4 m. On the left, is located the mountain ranges of Hunsrück and Eifel, on the right Taunus
Taunus
and Westerwald. According to geologists, the characteristic narrow valley form was created by erosion by the river while the surrounding landscape was lifted (see water gap). Major tributaries in this section are the Lahn
Lahn
and the Moselle. They join the Rhine
Rhine
near Koblenz, for the right and left respectively. Almost the entire length of the Middle Rhine
Middle Rhine
runs in the German state of Rhineland-Palatinate. The dominant economic sectors in the Middle Rhine
Middle Rhine
area are viniculture and tourism. The Rhine Gorge
Rhine Gorge
between Rüdesheim am Rhein
Rüdesheim am Rhein
and Koblenz is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Near Sankt Goarshausen, the Rhine
Rhine
flows around the famous rock Lorelei. With its outstanding architectural monuments, the slopes full of vines, settlements crowded on the narrow river banks and scores of castles lined up along the top of the steep slopes, the Middle Rhine
Middle Rhine
Valley can be considered the epitome of the Rhine
Rhine
romanticism. Lower Rhine[edit] Main article: Lower Rhine

Low water in Düsseldorf

The Lower Rhine
Lower Rhine
at Emmerich

In Bonn, where the Sieg
Sieg
flows into the Rhine, the Rhine
Rhine
enters the North German Plain
North German Plain
and turns into the Lower Rhine. The Lower Rhine falls from 50 m to 12 m. The main tributaries on this stretch are the Ruhr
Ruhr
and the Lippe. Like the Upper Rhine, the Lower Rhine
Rhine
used to meander until engineering created a solid river bed. Because the levees are some distance from the river, at high tide the Lower Rhine
Lower Rhine
has more room for widening than the Upper Rhine. The Lower Rhine
Lower Rhine
flows through North Rhine-Westphalia. Its banks are usually heavily populated and industrialized, in particular the agglomerations Cologne, Düsseldorf
Düsseldorf
and Ruhr
Ruhr
area. Here the Rhine flows through the largest conurbation in Germany, the Rhine-Ruhr region. One of the most important cities in this region is Duisburg with the largest river port in Europe (Duisport). The region downstream of Duisburg
Duisburg
is more agricultural. In Wesel, 30 km downstream of Duisburg, is located the western end of the second east-west shipping route, the Wesel-Datteln Canal, which runs parallel to the Lippe. Between Emmerich and Cleves
Cleves
the Emmerich Rhine
Rhine
Bridge, the longest suspension bridge in Germany, crosses the 400-metre-wide (1,300 ft) river. Near Krefeld, the river crosses the Uerdingen line, the line which separates the areas where Low German
Low German
and High German are spoken.

Delta[edit] Main articles: Rhine–Meuse–Scheldt delta
Rhine–Meuse–Scheldt delta
and Nether Rhine

The central and northern parts of the Rhine- Meuse
Meuse
delta

Changing the Meuse
Meuse
estuary in 1904: light blue old course, dark blue today's course

Partition of Rhine
Rhine
and Meuse
Meuse
water among the various branches of their delta

The Nederrijn
Nederrijn
at Arnhem

The Dutch name for Rhine
Rhine
is "Rijn". The Rhine
Rhine
turns west and enters the Netherlands, where, together with the rivers Meuse
Meuse
and Scheldt, it forms the extensive Rhine-Meuse- Scheldt
Scheldt
delta, with 25,347 km2 (9,787 sq mi) the largest river delta in Europe.[22] Crossing the border into the Netherlands
Netherlands
at Spijk, close to Nijmegen and Arnhem, the Rhine
Rhine
is at its widest, although the river then splits into three main distributaries: the Waal, Nederrijn
Nederrijn
("Nether Rhine") and IJssel. From here, the situation becomes more complicated, as the Dutch name Rijn no longer coincides with the main flow of water. Two thirds of the water flow volume of the Rhine
Rhine
flows farther west, through the Waal and then, via the Merwede
Merwede
and Nieuwe Merwede
Merwede
(De Biesbosch), merging with the Meuse, through the Hollands Diep
Hollands Diep
and Haringvliet estuaries, into the North Sea. The Beneden Merwede
Merwede
branches off, near Hardinxveld-Giessendam
Hardinxveld-Giessendam
and continues as the Noord, to join the Lek, near the village of Kinderdijk, to form the Nieuwe Maas; then flows past Rotterdam
Rotterdam
and continues via Het Scheur
Het Scheur
and the Nieuwe Waterweg, to the North Sea. The Oude Maas
Oude Maas
branches off, near Dordrecht, farther down rejoining the Nieuwe Maas
Nieuwe Maas
to form Het Scheur. The other third of the water flows through the Pannerdens Kanaal
Pannerdens Kanaal
and redistributes in the IJssel
IJssel
and Nederrijn. The IJssel
IJssel
branch carries one ninth of the water flow of the Rhine
Rhine
north into the IJsselmeer
IJsselmeer
(a former bay), while the Nederrijn
Nederrijn
carries approximately two ninths of the flow west along a route parallel to the Waal. However, at Wijk bij Duurstede, the Nederrijn
Nederrijn
changes its name and becomes the Lek. It flows farther west, to rejoin the Noord into the Nieuwe Maas
Nieuwe Maas
and to the North Sea. The name Rijn, from here on, is used only for smaller streams farther to the north, which together formed the main river Rhine
Rhine
in Roman times. Though they retained the name, these streams no longer carry water from the Rhine, but are used for draining the surrounding land and polders. From Wijk bij Duurstede, the old north branch of the Rhine
Rhine
is called Kromme Rijn
Kromme Rijn
("Bent Rhine") past Utrecht, first Leidse Rijn (" Rhine
Rhine
of Leiden") and then, Oude Rijn ("Old Rhine"). The latter flows west into a sluice at Katwijk, where its waters can be discharged into the North Sea. This branch once formed the line along which the Limes Germanicus
Limes Germanicus
were built. During periods of lower sea levels within the various ice ages, the Rhine
Rhine
took a left turn, creating the Channel River, the course of which now lies below the English Channel. The Rhine- Meuse
Meuse
Delta, the most important natural region of the Netherlands
Netherlands
begins near Millingen aan de Rijn, close to the Dutch-German border with the division of the Rhine
Rhine
into Waal and Nederrijn. Since the Rhine
Rhine
contributes most of the water, the shorter term Rhine
Rhine
Delta is commonly used. However, this name is also used for the river delta where the Rhine
Rhine
flows into Lake Constance, so it is clearer to call the larger one Rhine- Meuse
Meuse
delta, or even Rhine–Meuse– Scheldt
Scheldt
delta, as the Scheldt
Scheldt
ends in the same delta. The shape of the Rhine
Rhine
delta is determined by two bifurcations: first, at Millingen aan de Rijn, the Rhine
Rhine
splits into Waal and Pannerdens Kanaal, which changes its name to Nederrijn
Nederrijn
at Angeren, and second near Arnhem, the IJssel
IJssel
branches off from the Nederrijn. This creates three main flows, two of which change names rather often. The largest and southern main branch begins as Waal and continues as Boven Merwede ("Upper Merwede"), Beneden Merwede
Merwede
("Lower Merwede"), Noord ("the North"), Nieuwe Maas
Nieuwe Maas
("New Meuse"), Het Scheur
Het Scheur
("the Rip") and Nieuwe Waterweg ("New Waterway"). The middle flow begins as Nederrijn, then changes into Lek, then joins the Noord, thereby forming Nieuwe Maas. The northern flow keeps the name IJssel
IJssel
until it flows into Lake IJsselmeer. Three more flows carry significant amounts of water: the Nieuwe Merwede
Merwede
("New Merwede"), which branches off from the southern branch where it changes from Boven to Beneden Merwede; the Oude Maas ("Old Meuse"), which branches off from the southern branch where it changes from Beneden Merwede
Merwede
into Noord, and Dordtse Kil, which branches off from Oude Maas. Before the St. Elizabeth's flood (1421), the Meuse
Meuse
flowed just south of today's line Merwede- Oude Maas
Oude Maas
to the North Sea
North Sea
and formed an archipelago-like estuary with Waal and Lek. This system of numerous bays, estuary-like extended rivers, many islands and constant changes of the coastline, is hard to imagine today. From 1421 to 1904, the Meuse
Meuse
and Waal merged further upstream at Gorinchem
Gorinchem
to form Merwede. For flood protection reasons, the Meuse
Meuse
was separated from the Waal through a lock and diverted into a new outlet called "Bergse Maas", then Amer and then flows into the former bay Hollands Diep. The northwestern part of the estuary (around Hook of Holland), is still called Maasmond
Maasmond
(" Meuse
Meuse
Mouth"), ignoring the fact that it now carries only water from the Rhine. This might explain the confusing naming of the various branches. The hydrography of the current delta is characterized by the delta's main arms, disconnected arms (Hollandse IJssel, Linge, Vecht, etc.) and smaller rivers and streams. Many rivers have been closed ("dammed") and now serve as drainage channels for the numerous polders. The construction of Delta Works
Delta Works
changed the Delta in the second half of the 20th Century fundamentally. Currently Rhine
Rhine
water runs into the sea, or into former marine bays now separated from the sea, in five places, namely at the mouths of the Nieuwe Merwede, Nieuwe Waterway (Nieuwe Maas), Dordtse Kil, Spui and IJssel. The Rhine- Meuse
Meuse
Delta is a tidal delta, shaped not only by the sedimentation of the rivers, but also by tidal currents. This meant that high tide formed a serious risk because strong tidal currents could tear huge areas of land into the sea. Before the construction of the Delta Works, tidal influence was palpable up to Nijmegen, and even today, after the regulatory action of the Delta Works, the tide acts far inland. At the Waal, for example, the most landward tidal influence can be detected between Brakel
Brakel
and Zaltbommel.

Geologic history[edit] Alpine orogeny[edit]

Schematic cross section of the Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
Graben.

The Rhine
Rhine
flows from the Alps
Alps
to the North Sea
North Sea
Basin; the geography and geology of its present-day watershed has been developing, since the Alpine orogeny
Alpine orogeny
began. In southern Europe, the stage was set in the Triassic
Triassic
Period of the Mesozoic
Mesozoic
Era, with the opening of the Tethys Ocean, between the Eurasian and African tectonic plates, between about 240 MBP and 220 MBP (million years before present). The present Mediterranean Sea descends from this somewhat larger Tethys sea. At about 180 MBP, in the Jurassic
Jurassic
Period, the two plates reversed direction and began to compress the Tethys floor, causing it to be subducted under Eurasia and pushing up the edge of the latter plate in the Alpine Orogeny of the Oligocene
Oligocene
and Miocene
Miocene
Periods. Several microplates were caught in the squeeze and rotated or were pushed laterally, generating the individual features of Mediterranean geography: Iberia pushed up the Pyrenees; Italy, the Alps, and Anatolia, moving west, the mountains of Greece
Greece
and the islands. The compression and orogeny continue today, as shown by the ongoing raising of the mountains a small amount each year and the active volcanoes. In northern Europe, the North Sea
North Sea
Basin had formed during the Triassic and Jurassic
Jurassic
periods and continued to be a sediment receiving basin since. In between the zone of Alpine orogeny
Alpine orogeny
and North Sea
North Sea
Basin subsidence, remained highlands resulting from an earlier orogeny (Variscan), such as the Ardennes, Eifel
Eifel
and Vosges. From the Eocene
Eocene
onwards, the ongoing Alpine orogeny
Alpine orogeny
caused a N–S rift system to develop in this zone. The main elements of this rift are the Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
Graben, in southwest Germany
Germany
and eastern France and the Lower Rhine
Lower Rhine
Embayment, in northwest Germany
Germany
and the southeastern Netherlands. By the time of the Miocene, a river system had developed in the Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
Graben, that continued northward and is considered the first Rhine
Rhine
river. At that time, it did not yet carry discharge from the Alps; instead, the watersheds of the Rhone and Danube
Danube
drained the northern flanks of the Alps. Stream capture[edit] The watershed of the Rhine
Rhine
reaches into the Alps
Alps
today, but it did not start out that way.[23] In the Miocene
Miocene
period, the watershed of the Rhine
Rhine
reached south, only to the Eifel
Eifel
and Westerwald
Westerwald
hills, about 450 km (280 mi) north of the Alps. The Rhine
Rhine
then had the Sieg
Sieg
as a tributary, but not yet the Moselle
Moselle
(river). The northern Alps
Alps
were then drained by the Danube. Through stream capture, the Rhine
Rhine
extended its watershed southward. By the Pliocene
Pliocene
period, the Rhine
Rhine
had captured streams down to the Vosges Mountains, including the Mosel, the Main and the Neckar. The northern Alps
Alps
were then drained by the Rhone. By the early Pleistocene
Pleistocene
period, the Rhine
Rhine
had captured most of its current Alpine watershed from the Rhône, including the Aare. Since that time, the Rhine
Rhine
has added the watershed above Lake Constance
Lake Constance
(Vorderrhein, Hinterrhein, Alpenrhein; captured from the Rhône), the upper reaches of the Main, beyond Schweinfurt
Schweinfurt
and the Vosges
Vosges
Mountains, captured from the Meuse, to its watershed. Around 2.5 million years ago (ending 11,600 years ago) was the geological period of the Ice Ages. Since approximately 600,000 years ago, six major Ice Ages have occurred, in which sea level dropped 120 m (390 ft) and much of the continental margins became exposed. In the Early Pleistocene, the Rhine
Rhine
followed a course to the northwest, through the present North Sea. During the so-called Anglian glaciation (~450,000 yr BP, marine oxygen isotope stage 12), the northern part of the present North Sea
North Sea
was blocked by the ice and a large lake developed, that overflowed through the English Channel. This caused the Rhine's course to be diverted through the English Channel. Since then, during glacial times, the river mouth was located offshore of Brest, France
France
and rivers, like the River Thames
River Thames
and the Seine, became tributaries to the Rhine. During interglacials, when sea level rose to approximately the present level, the Rhine
Rhine
built deltas, in what is now the Netherlands. The last glacial ran from ~74,000 (BP = Before Present), until the end of the Pleistocene
Pleistocene
(~11,600 BP). In northwest Europe, it saw two very cold phases, peaking around 70,000 BP and around 29,000–24,000 BP. The last phase slightly predates the global last ice age maximum (Last Glacial Maximum). During this time, the lower Rhine
Rhine
flowed roughly west through the Netherlands
Netherlands
and extended to the southwest, through the English Channel and finally, to the Atlantic Ocean. The English Channel, the Irish Channel and most of the North Sea
North Sea
were dry land, mainly because sea level was approximately 120 m (390 ft) lower than today. Most of the Rhine's current course was not under the ice during the last Ice Age; although, its source must still have been a glacier. A tundra, with Ice Age flora and fauna, stretched across middle Europe, from Asia to the Atlantic Ocean. Such was the case during the Last Glacial Maximum, ca. 22,000–14,000 yr BP, when ice-sheets covered Scandinavia, the Baltics, Scotland and the Alps, but left the space between as open tundra. Loess
Loess
(wind-blown topsoil dust) arose from the south and North Sea
North Sea
plain settling on the slopes of the Alps, Urals and the Rhine
Rhine
Valley, rendering the valleys facing the prevailing winds especially fertile. End of the last ice age[edit] As northwest Europe slowly began to warm up from 22,000 years ago onward, frozen subsoil and expanded alpine glaciers began to thaw and fall-winter snow covers melted in spring. Much of the discharge was routed to the Rhine
Rhine
and its downstream extension.[24] Rapid warming and changes of vegetation, to open forest, began about 13,000 BP. By 9000 BP, Europe was fully forested. With globally shrinking ice-cover, ocean water levels rose and the English Channel and North Sea re-inundated. Meltwater, adding to the ocean and land subsidence, drowned the former coasts of Europe transgressionally. About 11000 years ago, the Rhine
Rhine
estuary was in the Strait of Dover. There remained some dry land in the southern North Sea, known as Doggerland, connecting mainland Europe to Britain. About 9000 years ago, that last divide was overtopped / dissected. Man was already resident in the area when these events happened. Since 7500 years ago the situation of tides, currents and land-forms has resembled the present. Rates of sea-level rise dropped such that natural sedimentation by the Rhine
Rhine
and coastal processes widely compensate for transgression by the sea. In the southern North Sea, due to ongoing tectonic subsidence, the coastline and sea bed are sinking at the rate of about 1–3 cm (0.39–1.18 in) per century (1 metre or 39 inches in last 3000 years). About 7000–5000 BP, a general warming encouraged migration of all former ice-locked areas, including up the Danube
Danube
and down the Rhine
Rhine
by peoples to the east. A sudden massive expansion of the Black Sea as the Mediterranean Sea
Mediterranean Sea
burst into it through the Bosporus
Bosporus
may have occurred about 7500 BP. Holocene delta[edit] At the begin of the Holocene (~11,700 years ago), the Rhine
Rhine
occupied its Late-Glacial valley. As a meandering river, it reworked its ice-age floodplain. As sea-level rise continued in the Netherlands, the formation of the Holocene Rhine- Meuse
Meuse
delta began (~8,000 years ago). Coeval absolute sea-level rise and tectonic subsidence have strongly influenced delta evolution. Other factors of importance to the shape of the delta are the local tectonic activities of the Peel Boundary Fault, the substrate and geomorphology, as inherited from the Last Glacial and the coastal-marine dynamics, such as barrier and tidal inlet formations.[25] Since ~3000 yr BP (= years Before Present), human impact is seen in the delta. As a result of increasing land clearance (Bronze Age agriculture), in the upland areas (central Germany), the sediment load of the Rhine
Rhine
has strongly increased[26] and delta growth has speeded up.[27] This has caused increased flooding and sedimentation, ending peat formation in the delta. In the geologically recent past the main process distributing sediment across the delta has been the shifting of river channels to new locations on the floodplain (termed avulsion). Over the past 6000 years, approximately 80 avulsions have occurred.[23] Direct human impact in the delta began with the mining of peat for salt and fuel from Roman times onward. This was followed by embankment of the major distributaries and damming of minor distributaries, which took place in the 11–13th century AD. Thereafter, canals were dug, bends were straightened and groynes were built to prevent the river's channels from migrating or silting up. At present, the branches Waal and Nederrijn-Lek discharge to the North Sea through the former Meuse
Meuse
estuary, near Rotterdam. The river IJssel branch flows to the north and enters the IJsselmeer
IJsselmeer
(formerly the Zuider Zee), initially a brackish lagoon but a freshwater lake since 1932. The discharge of the Rhine
Rhine
is divided into three branches: the Waal (6/9 of total discharge), the Nederrijn
Nederrijn
– Lek (2/9 of total discharge) and the IJssel
IJssel
(1/9 of total discharge). This discharge distribution has been maintained since 1709 by river engineering works including the digging of the Pannerdens canal and the installation, in the 20th century, of a series of weirs on the Nederrijn. Cultural history[edit] Main article: Rhineland Further information: Rhenus Pater

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Loreley

Antiquity[edit] Further information: Limes Germanicus The Rhine
Rhine
was not known to Herodotus
Herodotus
and first enters the historical period in the 1st century BC in Roman-era geography. At that time, it formed the boundary between Gaul
Gaul
and Germania. The Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
had been part of the areal of the late Hallstatt culture since the 6th century BC, and by the 1st century BC, the areal of the La Tène culture
La Tène culture
covered almost its entire length, forming a contact zone with the Jastorf culture, i.e. the locus of early Celtic-Germanic cultural contact. In Roman geography, the Rhine
Rhine
formed the boundary between Gallia and Germania
Germania
by definition; e.g. Maurus Servius Honoratus, Commentary on the Aeneid of Vergil (8.727) (Rhenus) fluvius Galliae, qui Germanos a Gallia dividit "(The Rhine
Rhine
is a) river of Gaul, which divides the Germanic people from Gaul." In Roman geography, the Rhine
Rhine
and Hercynia Silva
Hercynia Silva
were considered the boundary of the civilized world; as it was a wilderness, the Romans were eager to explore it. This view is typified by Res Gestae Divi Augusti, a long public inscription of Augustus, in which he boasts of his exploits; including, sending an expeditionary fleet north of the Rheinmouth, to Old Saxony
Old Saxony
and Jutland, which he claimed no Roman had ever done before. Augustus
Augustus
ordered his general Drusus to establish 50 military camps along the Rhine, starting the Germanic Wars
Germanic Wars
in 12 BC. At this time, the plain of the Lower Rhine
Lower Rhine
was the territory of the Ubii. The first urban settlement, on the grounds of what is today the centre of Cologne, along the Rhine, was Oppidum Ubiorum, which was founded in 38 BC by the Ubii. Cologne
Cologne
became acknowledged, as a city by the Romans in AD 50, by the name of Colonia Claudia Ara Agrippinensium. From the death of Augustus
Augustus
in AD 14 until after AD 70, Rome accepted as her Germanic frontier the water-boundary of the Rhine
Rhine
and upper Danube. Beyond these rivers she held only the fertile plain of Frankfurt, opposite the Roman border fortress of Moguntiacum (Mainz), the southernmost slopes of the Black Forest
Black Forest
and a few scattered bridge-heads. The northern section of this frontier, where the Rhine is deep and broad, remained the Roman boundary until the empire fell. The southern part was different. The upper Rhine
Rhine
and upper Danube
Danube
are easily crossed. The frontier which they form is inconveniently long, enclosing an acute-angled wedge of foreign territory between the modern Baden
Baden
and Württemberg. The Germanic populations of these lands seem in Roman times to have been scanty, and Roman subjects from the modern Alsace-Lorraine
Alsace-Lorraine
had drifted across the river eastwards. The Romans kept eight legions in five bases along the Rhine. The actual number of legions present at any base or in all, depended on whether a state or threat of war existed. Between about AD 14 and 180, the assignment of legions was as follows: for the army of Germania
Germania
Inferior, two legions at Vetera (Xanten), I Germanica and XX Valeria (Pannonian troops); two legions at oppidum Ubiorum ("town of the Ubii"), which was renamed to Colonia Agrippina, descending to Cologne, V Alaudae, a Celtic legion recruited from Gallia Narbonensis and XXI, possibly a Galatian legion from the other side of the empire. For the army of Germania
Germania
Superior: one legion, II Augusta, at Argentoratum
Argentoratum
(Strasbourg); and one, XIII Gemina, at Vindonissa (Windisch). Vespasian had commanded II Augusta, before his promotion to imperator. In addition, were a double legion, XIV and XVI, at Moguntiacum (Mainz). The two original military districts of Germania
Germania
Inferior and Germania Superior, came to influence the surrounding tribes, who later respected the distinction in their alliances and confederations. For example, the upper Germanic peoples
Germanic peoples
combined into the Alemanni. For a time, the Rhine
Rhine
ceased to be a border, when the Franks
Franks
crossed the river and occupied Roman-dominated Celtic Gaul, as far as Paris. Germanic tribes
Germanic tribes
crossed the Rhine
Rhine
in the Migration period, by the 5th century establishing the kingdoms of Francia
Francia
on the Lower Rhine, Burgundy on the Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
and Alemannia
Alemannia
on the High Rhine. This "Germanic Heroic Age" is reflected in medieval legend, such as the Nibelungenlied
Nibelungenlied
which tells of the hero Siegfried killing a dragon on the Drachenfels (Siebengebirge)
Drachenfels (Siebengebirge)
("dragons rock"), near Bonn
Bonn
at the Rhine
Rhine
and of the Burgundians and their court at Worms, at the Rhine and Kriemhild's golden treasure, which was thrown into the Rhine
Rhine
by Hagen. Medieval and modern history[edit] Further information: Rhine
Rhine
romanticism

French forces under Louis XIV cross the Rhine
Rhine
into the Netherlands
Netherlands
in 1672

By the 6th century, the Rhine
Rhine
was within the borders of Francia. In the 9th, it formed part of the border between Middle and Western Francia, but in the 10th century, it was fully within the Holy Roman Empire, flowing through Swabia, Franconia
Franconia
and Lower Lorraine. The mouths of the Rhine, in the county of Holland, fell to the Burgundian Netherlands
Netherlands
in the 15th century; Holland remained contentious territory throughout the European wars of religion
European wars of religion
and the eventual collapse of the Holy Roman Empire, when the length of the Rhine
Rhine
fell to the First French Empire
First French Empire
and its client states. The Alsace
Alsace
on the left banks of the Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
was sold to Burgundy by Archduke Sigismund of Austria
Austria
in 1469 and eventually fell to France
France
in the Thirty Years' War. The numerous historic castles in Rhineland-Palatinate
Rhineland-Palatinate
attest to the importance of the river as a commercial route. Since the Peace of Westphalia, the Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
formed a contentious border between France
France
and Germany. Establishing "natural borders" on the Rhine
Rhine
was a long-term goal of French foreign policy, since the Middle Ages, though the language border was – and is – far more to the west. French leaders, such as Louis XIV and Napoleon Bonaparte, tried with varying degrees of success to annex lands west of the Rhine. The Confederation of the Rhine
Confederation of the Rhine
was established by Napoleon, as a French client state, in 1806 and lasted until 1814, during which time it served as a significant source of resources and military manpower for the First French Empire. In 1840, the Rhine
Rhine
crisis, prompted by French prime minister Adolphe Thiers's desire to reinstate the Rhine
Rhine
as a natural border, led to a diplomatic crisis and a wave of nationalism in Germany.

Allied soldiers of the Royal Newfoundland Regiment
Royal Newfoundland Regiment
crossing the Rhine into Germany
Germany
after the end of WWI, December 1918

The Rhine
Rhine
became an important symbol in German nationalism
German nationalism
during the formation of the German state in the 19th century (see Rhine romanticism).

The song Die Wacht am Rhein, which became almost a national anthem. Das Rheingold
Das Rheingold
– inspired by the Nibelungenlied, the Rhine
Rhine
is one of the settings for the first opera of Richard Wagner's Der Ring des Nibelungen. The action of the epic opens and ends underneath the Rhine, where three Rheinmaidens swim and protect a hoard of gold. The Loreley/ Lorelei
Lorelei
is a rock on the eastern bank of the Rhine, that is associated with several legendary tales, poems and songs. The river spot has a reputation for being a challenge for inexperienced navigators.

At the end of World War I, the Rhineland
Rhineland
was subject to the Treaty of Versailles. This decreed that it would be occupied by the allies, until 1935 and after that, it would be a demilitarised zone, with the German army forbidden to enter. The Treaty of Versailles
Treaty of Versailles
and this particular provision, in general, caused much resentment in Germany and is often cited as helping Adolf Hitler's rise to power. The allies left the Rhineland, in 1930 and the German army re-occupied it in 1936, which was enormously popular in Germany. Although the allies could probably have prevented the re-occupation, Britain and France were not inclined to do so, a feature of their policy of appeasement to Hitler.

Soldiers of the US 89th Infantry Division
US 89th Infantry Division
cross the Rhine
Rhine
in assault boats under German fire as part of Operation Plunder
Operation Plunder
on 24 March 1945

In World War II, it was recognised that the Rhine
Rhine
would present a formidable natural obstacle to the invasion of Germany, by the Western Allies. The Rhine
Rhine
bridge at Arnhem, immortalized in the book, A Bridge Too Far and the film, was a central focus of the battle for Arnhem, during the failed Operation Market Garden
Operation Market Garden
of September 1944. The bridges at Nijmegen, over the Waal distributary of the Rhine, were also an objective of Operation Market Garden. In a separate operation, the Ludendorff Bridge, crossing the Rhine
Rhine
at Remagen, became famous, when U.S. forces were able to capture it intact – much to their own surprise – after the Germans failed to demolish it. This also became the subject of a film, The Bridge at Remagen. Seven Days to the River Rhine
Rhine
was a Warsaw Pact
Warsaw Pact
war plan for an invasion of Western Europe during the Cold War. Until 1932 the generally accepted length of the Rhine
Rhine
was 1,230 kilometres (764 miles). In 1932 the German encyclopedia Knaurs Lexikon stated the length as 1,320 kilometres (820 miles), presumably a typographical error. After this number was placed into the authoritative Brockhaus Enzyklopädie, it became generally accepted and found its way into numerous textbooks and official publications. The error was discovered in 2010, and the Dutch Rijkswaterstaat confirms the length at 1,232 kilometres (766 miles).[note 1] Lists of features[edit] Cities on the Rhine[edit]

Large cities that are situated on the Rhine: Switzerland:

Basel

France:

Strasbourg

Germany:

Karlsruhe Mannheim Ludwigshafen Wiesbaden Mainz Koblenz Bonn Cologne Leverkusen Neuss Düsseldorf Krefeld
Krefeld
(Uerdingen) Duisburg

Netherlands:

Arnhem
Arnhem
(Nederrijn) Nijmegen
Nijmegen
(Waal) Utrecht (Kromme Rijn) Rotterdam
Rotterdam
(Nieuwe Maas)

Smaller cities that are situated on the Rhine: Switzerland:

Chur Kreuzlingen Schaffhausen

Liechtenstein:

Vaduz

Germany:

Konstanz Breisach Speyer Worms Bingen am Rhein Rüdesheim am Rhein Neuwied Andernach Bad Honnef Königswinter Niederkassel Wesseling Dormagen Zons Monheim am Rhein Wesel Xanten Emmerich am Rhein

Netherlands:

Zutphen
Zutphen
(IJssel) Deventer
Deventer
(IJssel) Zwolle
Zwolle
(IJssel) Kampen (IJssel) Leiden
Leiden
(Oude Rijn) Dordrecht
Dordrecht
(Merwede)

Countries and borders[edit] During its course from the Alps
Alps
to the North Sea, the Rhine
Rhine
passes through four countries and constitutes six different country borders. On the various parts:

the Anterior Rhine
Anterior Rhine
lies entirely within Switzerland, while at least one tributary to Posterior Rhine, Reno di Lei originates in Italy, but is not considered a part of the Rhine
Rhine
proper. the Alpine Rhine
Alpine Rhine
flows within Switzerland
Switzerland
till Sargans, from which it becomes the border between Switzerland
Switzerland
(to the west) and Liechtenstein (to the east) until Oberriet, and the river never flows within Liechtenstein. It then becomes the border between Switzerland
Switzerland
(to the west) and Austria
Austria
(to the east) until Diepoldsau
Diepoldsau
where the modern and straight course enters Switzerland, while the original course Alter Rhein makes a bend to the east and continues as the Swiss-Austrian border until the confluence at Widnau. From here the river continues as the border until Lustenau, where the modern and straight course enters Austria
Austria
(the only part of the river that flows within Austria), while the original course makes a bend to the west and continues as the border, until both courses enters Lake Constance. the first half of Seerhein, between the upper and lower body of Lake Constance, flows within Germany
Germany
(and the city of Konstanz), while the second is the German (to the north) – Swiss (to the south) frontier. the first parts of the High Rhine, from Lake Constance
Lake Constance
to Altholz, the river alternates flowing within Switzerland
Switzerland
and being the German-Swiss frontier (three times each). From Altholz the river is the German – Swiss border until Basel, where it enters Switzerland
Switzerland
for the last time. the Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
is the border between France
France
(to the west) and Switzerland
Switzerland
(to the east) for a short distance, from Basel
Basel
to Hunningue. Here it becomes the Franco (to the west) – German (to the east) frontier until Au am Rhein. Hence, the main course of the Rhine never flows within France, although some river canals do. From Au am Rhein the river flows within Germany. the Middle Rhine
Middle Rhine
flows entirely within Germany. the Lower Rhine
Lower Rhine
flows within Germany
Germany
until Emmerich am Rhein, where it becomes the border between The Netherlands
Netherlands
(to the north) and Germany (to the south). At Millingen aan de Rijn
Millingen aan de Rijn
the river enters the Netherlands. all parts of the Delta Rhein flows within the Netherlands
Netherlands
until they enters the North Sea, IJsselmeer
IJsselmeer
(IJssel) or Haringvliet
Haringvliet
(Waal) at the Dutch coast.

Bridges[edit] Main article: List of bridges over the Rhine Former distributaries[edit] Order: panning north to south through the Western Netherlands:

Vecht (Utrecht)
Vecht (Utrecht)
(minor channel in Roman times, flowing into former Zuider Zee
Zuider Zee
lagoon) Kromme Rijn
Kromme Rijn
Oude Rijn (Utrecht and South Holland)
Oude Rijn (Utrecht and South Holland)
(main channel in Roman times, dammed in the 12th century) Hollandse IJssel
IJssel
(formed after Roman times, dammed in the 13th century AD) Linge
Linge
(big channel in Roman times, dammed in the 14th century AD) De Biesbosch-area (initiated by AD 1421–1424 storm surges and river floods, by-passed since the digging of Nieuwe Merwede
Merwede
canal in AD 1904)

Canals[edit] Order: upstream to downstream:

Rhine–Main– Danube
Danube
Canal – southeastern Germany Grand Canal d' Alsace
Alsace
– eastern France Rhine-Herne Canal
Rhine-Herne Canal
– northwest Germany, connection to the Dortmund-Ems Canal
Dortmund-Ems Canal
and the Mittellandkanal Maas-Waal Canal
Maas-Waal Canal
– eastcentral Netherlands Amsterdam-Rhine Canal
Amsterdam-Rhine Canal
– central Netherlands Scheldt-Rhine Canal – southwest Netherlands Canal of Drusus

See also[edit]

Central Commission for Navigation on the Rhine EV15 The Rhine
Rhine
Cycle Route Köln-Düsseldorfer Piz Lunghin
Piz Lunghin
(triple watershed: Po–Rhine–Danube) Witenwasserenstock
Witenwasserenstock
(triple watershed: Rhone–Rhine–Po) List of old waterbodies of the Rhine

Notes and references[edit] Notes[edit]

^ a b c d The Rhine
Rhine
only has an official length scale (Rheinkilometer) downstream of Constance. Its full length is subject to the definition of the Alpine Rhine. In 2010, there were media reports to the effect that the length of the Rhine
Rhine
had long been underreported in 20th-century encyclopedias, and upon request by journalists, Dutch Rijkswaterstaat cited a length of 1,232 km.Schrader, Christopher; Uhlmann, Berit (28 March 2010). "Der Rhein ist kürzer als gedacht – Jahrhundert-Irrtum". sueddeutsche.de (in German). Retrieved 27 March 2010. ." Rhine
Rhine
River 90km shorter than everyone thinks". The Local – Germany's news in English. 27 March 2010. Retrieved 9 April 2010.  "'We checked it out and came to 1,232 kilometres,' said Ankie Pannekoek, spokeswoman for the Dutch government hydrology office." ^ The Rhine
Rhine
is cited as the "twelfth-longest river of Europe"[according to whom?] if the Russian rivers Volga, Ural, Pechora, Kama, Northern Dvina–Vychegda, Oka and Belaya are counted which are based on the modern conventional boundary between Europe and Asia are within European Russia or form part of the boundary to Asia. Also longer than the Rhine
Rhine
are the Eastern European rivers Dnieper, Don and Dniester flowing into the Black Sea. ^ The Rhine
Rhine
was not known in the Hellenistic period. It is mentioned by Cicero, In Pisonem 33.81. Strabo
Strabo
(1.4.3) mentions the countries "at the mouth of the Rhine" αἱ τοῦ Ῥήνου ἐκβολαί; "states that the countries "beyond the Rhine
Rhine
and as far as Scythia" καὶ τὰ πέραν τοῦ Ῥήνου τὰ μέχρι Σκυθῶ should be considered unknown, as Pytheas' account of remote nations is not to be trusted. ^ The loss of final -n in pausa is a recent development in Alemannic, the form Rīn is mostly preserved in Lucerne dialects. Schweizerisches Idiotikon s.v. "Rī(n)" (6,994). ^ Krahe (1964) claims the hydronym as "Old European", i.e. belonging to the oldest Indo-European layer of names predating the 6th century BC (Hallstatt D) Celtic expansion. ^ . In Albanian/Illyrian "Template:Rrhedh" also means to "move, flow, run". Pokorny's (1959) "3. er- : or- : r- 'to move, set in motion'" (pp. 326–32), laryngealist *h1reiH-, with an -n- suffix; Celtic reflexes: Old Irish renn "rapid", rīan "sea", Middle Irish rian "river, way". The root gives the Germanic verb rinnan (' < *ri-nw-an) whence English run (from a causative *rannjanan, Old English eornan); Gothic rinnan "run, flow," Old English
Old English
rinnan, Old Norse rinna "to run,", rinno "brook"; c.f. Sanskrit rinati "causes to flow"; Root cognates without the -n- suffix include Middle Low German ride "brook", Old English
Old English
riþ "stream", Dutch ril "running stream", Latin rivus "stream", Old Church Slavonic reka "river".; see also "Rhine". Online Etymology Dictionary. Douglas Harper. November 2001. Retrieved 10 February 2009.  ^ most notably the straighening of the Upper Rhine
Upper Rhine
planned by Johann Gottfried Tulla, completed during 1817–1876. ^ The geomorphological ridge line does not necessarily coincide with the watershed, since it refers to the average altitude in a surrounding circle ^ sediment management. The Rhine
Rhine
transports each year up to 3 million m³ of solids into the lake

References[edit]

^ a b "Le Rhin" (official site) (in French). Paris, France: L'Institut National de l'Information Geographique et Forestrière IGN. Retrieved 2016-03-06.  ^ Frijters and Leentvaar (2003) ^ Bosworth and Toller, An Anglo-Saxon Dictionary (1898), p. 799. Sió eá ðe man hǽt Rín Orosius
Orosius
(ed. J. Bosworth 1859) 1.1 ^ Rijn, Vroegmiddelnederlands Woordenboek ^ Bosworth and Toller, An Anglo-Saxon Dictionary (1898), p. 799: Rín; m.; f. The Rhine
Rhine
[...] O. H. Ger. Rín; m.: Icel. Rín; f. ^ sum of Vorderrhein
Vorderrhein
and Hinterrhein discharges according to Hydrologischer Atlas der Schweiz, 2002, Tab. 5.4 "Natürliche Abflüsse 1961–1980". ^ a b "Maps of Switzerland
Switzerland
– Swiss Confederation – GEWISS" (online map). Vorderrhein. Gewässernetz 1:2 Mio. National Map 1:200 000 (in German). Cartography by Swiss Federal Office of Topography swisstopo. Berne, Switzerland: Federal Office for the Environment FOEN. 2014. Retrieved 2016-01-04 – via http://map.geo.admin.ch.  ^ a b "Maps of Switzerland
Switzerland
– Swiss Confederation – GEWISS" (online map). Alpenrhein. Gewässernetz 1:2 Mio. National Map 1:2 Mio (in German). Cartography by Swiss Federal Office of Topography swisstopo. Berne, Switzerland: Federal Office for the Environment FOEN. 2014. Retrieved 2016-01-04 – via http://map.geo.admin.ch.  ^ a b "Maps of Switzerland
Switzerland
– Swiss Confederation – GEWISS" (online map). Lake Constance. Gewässernetz 1:200 000, Flussordnung. National Map 1:2 Mio (in German). Cartography by Swiss Federal Office of Topography swisstopo. Berne, Switzerland: Federal Office for the Environment FOEN. 2014. Retrieved 2016-01-05 – via http://map.geo.admin.ch.  ^ Average over the period 1961–1990: 1,297 m3/s (M. Spreafico und R. Weingartner, Hydrologie der Schweiz: Ausgewählte Aspekte und Resultate, Berichte des BWG, 2005, citing Schädler and Weingartner, 2002); regular yearly peak at 2,500 m3/s, exceptional peaks above 4,000 m3/s. Simon Scherrer, Armin Petrascheck, Hanspeter Hode, Extreme Hochwasser des Rheins bei Basel
Basel
– Herleitung von Szenarien (2006). ^ a b "Maps of Switzerland
Switzerland
– Swiss Confederation – GEWISS" (online map). High Rhine. Gewässernetz 1:2 Mio. National Map 1:2 Mio (in German). Cartography by Swiss Federal Office of Topography swisstopo. Berne, Switzerland: Federal Office for the Environment FOEN. 2014. Retrieved 2016-01-05 – via http://map.geo.admin.ch.  ^ Atlas der Schweiz Switzerland
Switzerland
maps by Swiss Federal Office of Topography Archived 9 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine. ^ "1232 - Oberalppass" (Map). Lai da Tuma (2015 ed.). 1:25 000. National Map 1:25'000. Wabern, Switzerland: Federal Office of Topography – swisstopo. 2013. ISBN 978-3-302-01232-2. Retrieved 2018-03-01 – via map.geo.admin.ch.  ^ "1193 - Tödi" (Map). Piz Russein
Piz Russein
(2016 ed.). 1:25 000. National Map 1:25'000. Wabern, Switzerland: Federal Office of Topography – swisstopo. 2013. ISBN 978-3-302-01193-6. Retrieved 2018-02-28 – via map.geo.admin.ch.  ^ Swiss Rhine
Rhine
long-distance trail Senda Sursilvana in Graubünden ^ Cioc, Mark. The Rhine: an eco-biography, 1815–2000. Seattle: University of Washington Press.48–49 ^ Cioc, Mark. The Rhine: an eco-biography, 1815–2000. Seattle: University of Washington Press. 2002. 52 ^ Cioc, Mark. The Rhine: an eco-biography, 1815–2000. Seattle: University of Washington Press. 2002. 53 ^ Cioc, Mark. The Rhine: an eco-biography, 1815–2000. Seattle: University of Washington Press. 2002. 54 ^ Cioc, Mark. The Rhine: an eco-biography, 1815–2000. Seattle: University of Washington Press. 2002: 54 ^ Cioc, Mark. The Rhine: an eco-biography, 1815–2000. Seattle: University of Washington Press. 2002: 56 ^ Tockner, K; Uehlinger, U; Robinson, C T; Siber, R; Tonolla, D; Peter, F D (2009). "European Rivers". In Lekens, Gene E. Encyclopedia of Inland Waters. 3. Elsevier. pp. 366–377. ISBN 978-0-12-370626-3.  ^ a b Berendsen and Stouthamer (2001) ^ Ménot et al. (2006) ^ Cohen et al. (2002) ^ Hoffmann et al. (2007) ^ Gouw and Erkens (2007)

Bibliography[edit]

Berendsen, Henk J.A.; Stouthamer, Esther (2001). Palaeogeographic Development of the Rhine- Meuse
Meuse
Delta, The Netherlands. Assen: Koninklijke Van Gorcum. ISBN 90-232-3695-5. OCLC 495447524.  Blackbourn, David (2006). The Conquest of Nature: Water, Landscape, and the Making of Modern Germany. London: Jonathan Cape. ISBN 0-224-06071-6. OCLC 224244112.  Cohen, K.M.; Stouthamer, E.; Berendsen, H.J.A. (February 2002). "Fluvial Deposits As a Record for Late Quaternary Neotectonic Activity in the Rhine- Meuse
Meuse
Delta, The Netherlands" (PDF). Netherlands
Netherlands
Journal of Geosciences – Geologie en Mijnbouw. 81 (3–4): 389–405. ISSN 0016-7746.  Frijters, Ine D.; Leentvaar, Jan (2003). Rhine
Rhine
Case Study (PDF). Technical documents in hydrology, no. 17. Paris: UNESCO International Hydrological Programme, (Rep. No. SC/2003/WS/54). OCLC 55974122.  Gouw, M.J.P.; Erkens, G. (March 2007). "Architecture of the Holocene Rhine- Meuse
Meuse
delta (the Netherlands) – A result of changing external controls". Netherlands
Netherlands
Journal of Geosciences – Geologie en Mijnbouw. 86 (1): 23–54. ISSN 0016-7746.  Hoffmann, T.; Erkens, G.; Cohen, K.; Houben, P.; Seidel, J.; Dikau, R. (2007). "Holocene Floodplain Sediment
Sediment
Storage and Hillslope Erosion Within the Rhine
Rhine
Catchment". The Holocene. 17 (1): 105–118. Bibcode:2007Holoc..17..105H. doi:10.1177/0959683607073287.  Ménot, Guillemette; Bard, Edouard; Rostek, Frauke; Weijers, Johan W.H.; Hopmans, Ellen C.; Schouten, Stefan; Sinninghe Damsté, Jaap S. (15 September 2006). "Early Reactivation of European Rivers During the Last Deglaciation". Science. 313 (5793): 1623–1625. Bibcode:2006Sci...313.1623M. doi:10.1126/science.1130511. PMID 16973877.  " Rhine
Rhine
River History". Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. 2010. Retrieved 29 March 2010.  Roll, Mitch (2009). " Rhine
Rhine
River History and Maps". The ROLL "FAME" Family. Archived from the original on 23 March 2010. Retrieved 29 March 2010. 

External links[edit]

Rhine
Rhine
with maps and details of navigation through the French section; places, ports and moorings, by the author of Inland Waterways of France, Imray Navigation details for 80 French rivers and canals (French waterways website section)

v t e

Tributaries of the Rhine

Left (western)

Vorderrhein Aua da Russein Schmuèr Alpine Rhine Vorderrhein Tamina Alter Rhein Rheintaler Binnenkanal Lake Constance Goldach High Rhine Thur Töss Glatt Aare Sissle Ergolz Birs Birsig Upper Rhine Ill Moder Sauer Lauter Spiegelbach Queich Speyerbach Rehbach Isenach Eckbach Eisbach Pfrimm Selz Middle Rhine Welzbach Nahe Moselle Nette Brohlbach Ahr Lower Rhine Erft

Right (eastern)

Vorderrhein Rein da Tuma Rein da Curnera Rein da Medel Rein da Sumvitg Glogn Rabiusa Hinterrhein Ragn da Ferrera Albula/Alvra Alpine Rhine Hinterrhein Plessur Landquart Mülbach Ill Frutz Lake Constance Dornbirner Ach Bregenzer Ach Leiblach Argen Schussen Rotach Brunnisaach Lipbach Seefelder Aach Stockacher Aach Radolfzeller Aach High Rhine Biber Wutach Alb Murg Wehra Upper Rhine Wiese Elz Kinzig Rench Acher Murg Alb Pfinz Saalbach Kraichbach Leimbach Neckar Weschnitz Modau Main Middle Rhine Wisper Lahn Wied Lower Rhine Sieg Wupper Düssel Ruhr Emscher Lippe IJssel Oude IJssel/Issel Berkel Schipbeek

v t e

Rhine–Meuse– Scheldt
Scheldt
delta

Rhine Rijn Rhin

Current distributaries Waal Nederrijn IJssel Lek Merwede Boven Merwede Nieuwe Merwede Beneden Merwede Oude Maas Dordtsche Kil Noord Nieuwe Maas Het Scheur Nieuwe Waterweg

Former distributaries Kromme Rijn Leidse Rijn Oude Rijn Hollandse IJssel Vecht Waaltje Brielse Maas Spui

Current estuaries Nieuwe Waterweg IJsselmeer

Former estuaries Hollands Diep Haringvliet Volkerak Krammer Grevelingen Keeten-Mastgat Oosterschelde

Associated canals Bijlands Kanaal Pannerdens Kanaal Amsterdam– Rhine
Rhine
Canal Vaartse Rijn Nieuwe Merwede Nieuwe Waterweg Scheldt– Rhine
Rhine
Canal Maas–Waal Canal

Meuse Maas

Current distributaries Bergse Maas Amer

Former distributaries Oude Maasje Afgedamde Maas Merwede Boven Merwede Beneden Merwede Oude Maas Dordtsche Kil Noord Nieuwe Maas Het Scheur Nieuwe Waterweg

Current estuaries

Former estuaries Hollands Diep Haringvliet Volkerak Krammer Grevelingen Keeten-Mastgat Oosterschelde

Associated canals Heusden Canal Bergse Maas Maas–Waal Canal

Scheldt Schelde Escaut

Current distributaries Western Scheldt

Former distributaries Oosterschelde Eendracht

Current estuaries Western Scheldt

Former estuaries Oosterschelde Krammer Grevelingen

Associated canals Scheldt– Rhine
Rhine
Canal Canal through Walcheren

Other rivers (directly draining into the delta)

Linge Mark Donge Rotte Oude IJssel

Islands and Peninsulas

Rozenburg IJsselmonde Het Eiland van Dordt Voorne and Putten Hoeksche Waard Tiengemeten Goeree-Overflakkee Schouwen-Duiveland Tholen Sint Philipsland Walcheren Noord-Beveland Zuid-Beveland

Towns

Rotterdam Antwerp Dordrecht Bergen-op-Zoom Schiedam Vlissingen Vlaardingen Middelburg Spijkenisse

Other topics

Delta Works Verdronken Land van Reimerswaal Verdronken Land van Saeftinghe St. Elizabeth's flood (1421) St. Felix's Flood All Saints' Flood (1570)

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 3145602320301361474 LCCN: sh85113657 GND: 4049739-2 BNF: cb11949068g (data) HDS:

.