dike

dike1
diker, n.
/duyk/, n., v., diked, diking.
n.
1. an embankment for controlling or holding back the waters of the sea or a river: They built a temporary dike of sandbags to keep the river from flooding the town.
2. a ditch.
3. a bank of earth formed of material being excavated.
4. a causeway.
5. Brit. Dial. a low wall or fence, esp. of earth or stone, for dividing or enclosing land.
6. an obstacle; barrier.
7. Geol.
a. a long, narrow, cross-cutting mass of igneous rock intruded into a fissure in older rock.
b. a similar mass of rock composed of other kinds of material, as sandstone.
8. Chiefly Australian Slang. a urinal.
v.t.
9. to furnish or drain with a dike.
10. to enclose, restrain, or protect by a dike: to dike a tract of land.
Also, dyke.
[bef. 900; ME dik(e), OE dic < ON diki; akin to DITCH]
dike2
dikey, adj.
/duyk/, n. Slang (often disparaging and offensive).
dyke2.

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Bank, usually of earth, constructed to control or confine water.

Dikes were purely defensive at first but later became a means to acquire polders (tracts of land reclaimed from a body of water through the construction of offshore dikes roughly parallel to the shoreline). After a dike is built, the polder is drained by pumping out the water. Where the land surface is above low-tide level, tide gates discharge water into the sea at low tide and automatically close to prevent reentry of seawater at high tide. To reclaim lands that are below low-tide level, the water must be pumped over the dikes. The most notable example of polder construction is the system adjacent to Holland's IJsselmeer (Zuider Zee) barrier dam. If The Netherlands were to lose the protection of its dikes, its most densely populated portion would be inundated by the sea and rivers.

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      in geology, tabular or sheetlike igneous body that is often oriented vertically or steeply inclined to the bedding of preexisting intruded rocks; similar bodies oriented parallel to the bedding of the enclosing rocks are called sills (sill). A dike set is composed of several parallel dikes; when the number of dikes is large, the term dike swarm is used. Although dikes may range in size from a few centimetres to greater than 10 metres (30 feet) in width, they average between 0.3 and 6 metres (1 and 20 feet) wide. The length of a dike usually depends upon how far it can be traced across the surface; dikes can be up to hundreds of miles long. Dikes have a wide range of rock compositions. They commonly have a porphyritic texture, i.e., larger crystals within a finer grained groundmass, indicating two periods of crystallization.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Dike — Dike, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Diked}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Diking}.] [OE. diken, dichen, AS. d[=i]cian to dike. See {Dike}.] 1. To surround or protect with a dike or dry bank; to secure with a bank. [1913 Webster] 2. To drain by a dike or ditch. [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Dike — (d[imac]), n. [OE. dic, dike, diche, ditch, AS. d[imac]c dike, ditch; akin to D. dijk dike, G. deich, and prob. teich pond, Icel. d[imac]ki dike, ditch, Dan. dige; perh. akin to Gr. tei^chos (for qei^chos) wall, and even E. dough; or perh. to Gr …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Dike — Dike, v. i. To work as a ditcher; to dig. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] He would thresh and thereto dike and delve. Chaucer. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Dike — Dike, IA U.S. city in Iowa Population (2000): 944 Housing Units (2000): 393 Land area (2000): 1.304685 sq. miles (3.379118 sq. km) Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km) Total area (2000): 1.304685 sq. miles (3.379118 sq. km)… …   StarDict's U.S. Gazetteer Places

  • Dike, IA — U.S. city in Iowa Population (2000): 944 Housing Units (2000): 393 Land area (2000): 1.304685 sq. miles (3.379118 sq. km) Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km) Total area (2000): 1.304685 sq. miles (3.379118 sq. km) FIPS code:… …   StarDict's U.S. Gazetteer Places

  • dike — [daık] n [: Old English; Origin: dic ditch, dike ] another spelling of ↑dyke …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • dike — dike1 [dīk] n. [ME < OE dic & ON diki, akin to DITCH, Du dijk, Ger deich < IE base * dhēigw , * dhīgw , to pierce, fasten > L figere, FIX] 1. [Now Brit. Dial.] a) a ditch or watercourse b) the bank of earth thrown up in digging a ditch …   English World dictionary

  • Dike — (gr.), 1) Gerechtigkeit; 2) (Myth.), die Göttin der Gerechtigkeit, s. Asträa, auch eine der Horen; 3) Privatrechtshandel, s. Athen (Ant.) C) …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Dike — (»Gerechtigkeit«), eine der Horen (s. d.), Beisitzerin ihres Vaters Zeus, dem sie alle Untaten der Menschen, namentlich ungerechte Richtersprüche, anzeigt; auch verfolgt sie ähnlich den Erinyen selbst die Missetäter. Mit der Zeit ward sie der… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Dike — (grch.), in der griech. Mythologie eine der Horen (s.d.), Tochter des Zeus und der Themis, die Göttin der strafenden und vergeltenden Gerechtigkeit …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Dike — Dike, myth., Tochter des Zeus und der Themis, Göttin der Gerechtigkeit, insofern diese im Gerichte waltend ge dacht wird …   Herders Conversations-Lexikon


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