What is the "dune": the meaning of the word, interesting facts and photos

At the mention of a sand dune, a picture of a vast desert rises before your eyes, along which camel caravans laden with various goods are slowly strolling. Bedouins who wander in the sand after camels and leave traces that the wind blows.

What is a dune?

The sand dune is a mound of sand, formed naturally by the movement of sand. This is a huge hill of sand, which is in constant motion.

Meaning of the word "dune"

Where do the dunes come from?

In the desert, processes occur that are in many ways similar to the formation of sea waves. The wind, which in the desert does not interfere with houses, trees and mountainous reliefs, can freely move over long distances. At the same time he picks up the microscopic sand and takes it to a considerable distance. As a result, whole mountains of sand are formed. That is what a dune is.

Etymology of the word

It is unknown where exactly the word “barkhan” came from in the Russian language. Some languages ​​have similar words. So, you can find words that are close in sound in Kazakh, Turkmen, Kumyk and other languages.

According to D. N. Ushakov’s dictionary, the word “barkhan” has Turkmen roots and is derived from the local word “balqan”. Literally, it means "sand drift."

In the interpretation of N. M. Shansky's dictionary, the word comes from the Kazakh language and literally means “walking”. This is what barchan means for traditionally steppe peoples.

But still, many researchers of the Russian language are inclined to the variant of the origin of this word from the Kalmyk language. Residents of this region know firsthand about the dunes and sandy deserts. In Kalmykia there is the famous "Singing Dune", the largest in the Caspian region.

What is the "dune" in the Kalmyk language? In translation, the word "sand dune" means "high bank" - this is a literal translation. Clearly traced comparison with the marine theme.

The highest sand hills in the world

Barchans photos

The highest sand dune in the world has long been recognized as a sand dune located in the desert of Iran. Its height is about 408 meters in height.It is rather difficult to give names to dunes, as well as to determine their location due to their unstable location. Recently, a dune was discovered on the border of Oman, whose height is already about 460 meters.

The second is recognized as a sand dune located in the Gobi Desert. Its height was about 405 meters from the foot to the top.

The highest dune in Russia is the dune from Dagestan. His “height” is 263 meters.

What are the closest to the word "dune" meaning? Often the meaning of dune is used as a synonym. But this is not entirely true. Barkhan is a type of sand dunes. You can also use the word "hill", meaning "sand hill".

Dunes Facts

  • The singing sand dune was nicknamed so because the wind, passing over the surface of the embankment, quickly intensifies and creates a peculiar sound like a howl. According to the second version, the sound of the sand dune is obtained due to the friction between the smallest sand grains.
  • In the desert you can find a dune cat. This is a small animal of the cat family with a rounded muzzle, his head is big. They hunt snakes.
  • Barkhan Sarykum in Dagestan is located on the territory of the reserve, and a river flows at its foot.
  • Small hills such as rocks contribute to the formation of hills. At first, a thin layer of sand adheres to them, after which, layer by layer, it slowly grows on the surface, eventually forming a sandy mountain. So we can say that every sand dune has a “heart”.
Sand dunes
  • Sandy mountains can travel for many kilometers, so you cannot navigate through the sand in the desert, it is in continuous motion.
  • Several sand dunes not infrequently form a sandy ridge, which is more like a long wall.
  • Quite sands can often be found near the sandy hills.
  • The two most popular activities in the desert are skating on the sand dunes of off-road vehicles and skating on improvised sleds from the sandy hills down.

Sand dune in the photo is presented in the article.

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