Apr. 18th, 2017

Maar.

Apr. 18th, 2017 11:47 am
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You may know the common German word for lake, which is der See. Yes, it looks a lot like sea, but that's more commonly known as das Meer unless you're being poetic and then you can call it die See. German is NOT straightforward - a claim I've heard recently and which I find a little naive.

To make it all the more complicated there is also das Maar, which is a special kind of lake (and even that is not always true).

The word derives from the dialect of the Eifel region for the lakes of the region and in its most scientific definition it pertains to a broad, low-relief volcanic crater caused by a phreatomagmatic eruption (an explosion which occurs when groundwater comes into contact with hot lava or magma). Thanks, wikipedia! Often, these craters fill with water and then you get a Maar lake, but they also dry out (on their own or through human intervention) and then they become known as dry maars or Trockenmaare.

Among the most famous Maare are three lakes situated in close proximity in the Eifel near Daun. Here is one of them, the Schalkenmehrener Maar named for the village of Schalkenmehren which you can see in the background.



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