Ghats

/gawts, gots/, n. (used with a sing. v.)

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▪ mountain ranges, India
      two mountain ranges forming the eastern and western edges, respectively, of the Deccan plateau of peninsular India. The two ranges, run roughly parallel to the Bay of Bengal (Bengal, Bay of) and Arabian Sea coasts, respectively, from which they are separated by strips of fairly level coastal land. In Hindi ghat means “river landing stairs” or “mountain pass” and has been extended in its Anglicized plural form (formerly ghauts) to include the mountains themselves. The word refers as well to riverbanks that have been artificially terraced for bathing for religious purposes and also to ferry landings.

      The Eastern Ghats include several discontinuous and dissimilar hill masses that generally trend northeast-southwest along the Bay of Bengal. The narrow range has an average elevation of about 2,000 feet (600 metres), with peaks reaching 4,000 feet (1,200 metres) and higher; the high point is Arma Konda (5,512 feet [1,680 metres]) in Andhra Pradesh state. There is a gap in the chain 100 miles (160 km) wide through which the Krishna (Krishna River) and Godavari (Godavari River) rivers reach the coast; the Godavari runs through a gorge 40 miles (65 km) long. Farther southwest, beyond the Krishna River, the Eastern Ghats appear as a series of low ranges and hills. Southwest of Chennai (Madras), the Eastern Ghats continue as the Javadi and Shevaroy hills, beyond which they merge with the Western Ghats. The mountains' slopes have sparse forests containing valuable timber.

      The Western Ghats, which are possibly a fault scarp, are the crest of the western edge of the Deccan plateau. Their steep seaward slopes are deeply dissected by streams and canyonlike valleys, but on the landward side their slopes are gentle and give way to wide, mature valleys. The range extends northward to the Tapti River and southward almost to Cape Comorin (Comorin, Cape) at India's southern tip. The mountains reach elevations of 3,000 to 5,000 feet (900 to 1,500 metres) in the north, rise less than 3,000 feet in the area south of Goa, and are higher again in the far south, reaching 8,652 feet (2,637 metres) at Doda Betta mountain. The Palghat Gap separates the Western Ghats proper from their southward extension, known as the Southern Ghats. The Western Ghats, because they receive extremely heavy rainfall from the southwest monsoon, comprise peninsular India's principal watershed; rainfall is much lighter inland on the plateau. The high rainfall has produced dense forests on the seaward slopes, with bamboo, teak, and other valuable trees. Some rivers among the Western Ghats have been dammed to produce electric power. A number of hill resorts are located in the mountains.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Ghats — two lines of mountains in South India. The Western Ghats run along the coast of the Arabian Sea, and the Eastern Ghats run along the Bay of Bengal …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • Ghats — [gôts, gäts] two mountain ranges (Eastern Ghats and Western Ghats) forming the east & west edges of the Deccan Plateau, India: highest peak, 8,841 ft (2,695 m) …   English World dictionary

  • Ghats — (»Treppe«), in der Hindostanisprache Ufertreppe an einem Fluß, stufenweise aufsteigender Bergpfad, bezeichnet insbes. die längs der Ost und Westküste Vorderindiens hinziehenden Gebirgswälle, die das innere Hochland (Dekkan) umschließen und im S.… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Ghâts — ou Ghâtes chaînes côtières de l Inde, rebords occid. (les plus élevés: 2 695 m) et orient. du Dekkan …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Ghats — Ghats,   Bezeichnung für die Küstengebirge der Halbinsel Vorderindien: die Ostghats und die Westghats …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Ghats — As used in many parts of South Asia, the term ghat (Bengali: ঘাট ghaţ , Hindi: घाट steps ) refers to a series of steps leading down to a body of water. In Bengali speaking regions, this set of stairs can lead down to something as small as a pond… …   Wikipedia

  • Ghats — /gawts, gots/, n. (used with a sing. v.) 1. See Eastern Ghats. 2. See Western Ghats. * * * [gôts] two mountain ranges in central and southern India. Known as the Eastern Ghats and the Western Ghats, they run parallel to the coast on either side… …   Useful english dictionary

  • Ghats — Hindus bei der rituellen Waschung im Ganges in Varanasi Ghat (Hindi, m., घाट, ghāṭ) nennt man in Indien eine zu einem Gewässer hinunter führende Treppe. Neben vielfachen Verwendungsmöglichkeiten sind sie häufig wichtige Badestellen für rituelle… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Ghats — Ghât Ghâts sur les rives du Gange à Vârânasî Le mot ghât marches désigne en Inde les marches qui recouvrent les rives des cours d eau ou les berges des bassins ou tanks et permettent de descendre au contact de l eau. Par extension, ghât est aussi …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Ghats — geographical name see Eastern Ghats, Western Ghats …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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