From the death of Augustus in AD 14 until after AD 70, Rome accepted as her Germanic frontier the water-boundary of the Rhine and upper Danube. By the 6th century, the Rhine was within the borders of Francia. Many rivers have been closed ("dammed") and now serve as drainage channels for the numerous polders. The English Channel, the Irish Channel and most of the North Sea were dry land, mainly because sea level was approximately 120 m (390 ft) lower than today. The northern part forms the border between the German states of Rhineland-Palatinate in the west on the one hand, and Baden-Württemberg and Hesse on the other hand, in the east and north. Between Eglisau and Basel, the High Rhine consistently forms the border. During interglacials, when sea level rose to approximately the present level, the Rhine built deltas, in what is now the Netherlands. Step 2. This is the Romantic Rhine, a powerful stretch of the river slashing a deep and scenic gorge. However, this name is also used for the river delta where the Rhine flows into Lake Constance, so it is clearer to call the larger one Rhine-Meuse delta, or even Rhine–Meuse–Scheldt delta, as the Scheldt ends in the same delta. Rhine River in Basel, Switzerland. Since 7500 years ago the situation of tides, currents and land-forms has resembled the present. Although the majority of academic sources and reference materials This caused the Rhine's course to be diverted through the English Channel. We really had to get together and clean it up and keep it clean. An international waterway since the Treaty of Vienna in 1815, it is navigable overall for some 540 miles (870 km), as far as Rheinfelden on the Swiss-German border. [note 9] In the mouth region, it is therefore necessary to permanently remove gravel by dredging. River Rhine Fact File. Germanic tribes crossed the Rhine in the Migration period, by the 5th century establishing the kingdoms of Francia on the Lower Rhine, Burgundy on the Upper Rhine and Alemannia on the High Rhine. Though they retained the name, these streams no longer carry water from the Rhine, but are used for draining the surrounding land and polders. Establishing "natural borders" on the 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.  This has caused increased flooding and sedimentation, ending peat formation in the delta. By 9000 BP, Europe was fully forested. The river Rhine is Western Europe's most important waterway. 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 and a few scattered bridge-heads. 53, Cioc, Mark. The Rhine was not known to Herodotus and first enters the historical period in the 1st century BC in Roman-era geography.  In the Miocene period, the watershed of the Rhine reached south, only to the Eifel and Westerwald hills, about 450 km (280 mi) north of the Alps. Seattle: University of Washington Press. It is 820 miles long. The Aare also contains the waters from the 4,274 m (14,022 ft) summit of Finsteraarhorn, the highest point of the Rhine basin. The Rhein (Rhine) with its neighbouring states Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Austria, Germany, France and the Netherlands flows into the North Sea. Even more shockingly is the fact that these boats only require inches of water to operate. The river makes a distinctive turn to the north near Chur. The river’s majesty has long been celebrated in music. The Posterior Rhine rises in the Rheinwald below the Rheinwaldhorn. However, at Wijk bij Duurstede, the Nederrijn changes its name and becomes the Lek. In 1932 the German encyclopedia Knaurs Lexikon stated the length as 1,320 kilometres (820 miles), presumably a typographical error. It was made navigable to the Swiss town of Rheineck. French leaders, such as Louis XIV and Napoleon Bonaparte, tried with varying degrees of success to annex lands west of the Rhine. Major tributaries in this section are the Lahn and the Moselle. Current Loreley Loreley guided tours. Omissions? The first part acts as the border between France and Germany. Duisburg, which lies at the mouth of the Ruhr River, handles the bulk of the waterborne coal and coke from the Ruhr as well as imports of iron ore and oil. Also, should we reserve ahead of time since we have a particular day in mind? As a meandering river, it reworked its ice-age floodplain. Cruising down the Rhine is a trip that’s better to take during warmer seasons, in order to enjoy the region at its best. I've done every other kind of tour option besides this one so I was excited to get the opportunity to try out a 4-day journey on the Rhine River Bicycle Route, in this case from Cologne to Karlsruhe, all in Germany. On other stretches, both sides are Swiss; in fact most of the canton of Schaffhausen is on the north bank. The last glacial ran from ~74,000 (BP = Before Present), until the end of the Pleistocene (~11,600 BP). From here, the situation becomes more complicated, as the Dutch name Rijn no longer coincides with the main flow of water. Three countries border the Obersee, namely Switzerland in the south, Austria in the southeast and the German states of Bavaria in the northeast and Baden-Württemberg in the north and northwest. The Third Army did just that on the night of 22/23 March, crossing the river with a hasty assault south of Mainz at Oppenheim. The Rhine wanders through the countries of Switzerland, the tiny nation of Liechtenstein, Austria, Germany, an France. In 1840, the Rhine crisis, prompted by French prime minister Adolphe Thiers's desire to reinstate the Rhine as a natural border, led to a diplomatic crisis and a wave of nationalism in Germany. The compression and orogeny continue today, as shown by the ongoing raising of the mountains a small amount each year and the active volcanoes. Here the valley is the steepest and narrowest, often covered by vineyards, and sporting a castle or castle-ruin every two kilometers or so. At this time, the plain of the Lower Rhine was the territory of the Ubii. The construction of Delta Works changed the Delta in the second half of the 20th Century fundamentally. The Rhine roughly forms the German-Swiss border from Lake Constance with the exceptions of the canton of Schaffhausen and parts of the cantons of Zürich and Basel-Stadt, until it turns north at the so-called Rhine knee at Basel, leaving Switzerland. This was followed by embankment of the major distributaries and damming of minor distributaries, which took place in the 11–13th century AD. the Lower Rhine flows within Germany until, all parts of the Delta Rhein flows within the Netherlands until they enter the, This page was last edited on 4 January 2021, at 14:05. The Seerhein emerged in the last thousands of years, when erosion caused the lake level to be lowered by about 10 metres. Seattle: University of Washington Press.48–49, Cioc, Mark. In Roman geography, the Rhine formed the boundary between Gallia and Germania by definition; e.g.  Crossing the border into the Netherlands at Spijk, close to Nijmegen and Arnhem, the Rhine is at its widest, although the river then splits into three main distributaries: the Waal, Nederrijn ("Nether Rhine") and IJssel. Augustus ordered his stepson Roman general Drusus to establish 50 military camps along the Rhine, starting the Germanic Wars in 12 BC. Scheduled Cruises. As it approaches the Dutch border, the 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). The River was canalised between Metz and Thionville, via a canal opened in 1964 by the Grand Duchess, Charlotte of Luxembourg, ... Today the Moselle is navigable for large cargo ships up to 110 metres (360 ft) long from the Rhine in Koblenz up to Neuves-Maisons, south of Nancy. The Rhine carries very large amounts of debris into the lake. He likes to capture the beauty & magic things in our extraordinary, ordinary world….” Read More ... Latest news. The Rhine and the Danube formed most of the northern inland frontier of the Roman Empire and, since those days, the Rhine has been a vital navigable waterway carrying trade and goods deep inland. The river now flows north as Upper Rhine through the Upper Rhine Plain, which is about 300 km long and up to 40 km wide. [note 3], The spelling with Rh- in English 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 adoption of the Gaulish name as *Rīnaz, via Old Frankish giving Old English Rín, More than just a 65-kilometre stretch of the Middle Rhine Valley between Bingen/Rudesheim and Koblenz, the strongly flowing narrows of the World Heritage-listed Rhine Gorge, guarded by its forest of about 40 hilltop castles and fortresses, is the stuff of legend. A Rhine river cruise gives you the chance to get under the skin of not only one country but Europe as a whole. 750-1050)-language text, Articles containing Middle Dutch (ca. In addition, were a double legion, XIV and XVI, at Moguntiacum (Mainz). This meant that high tide formed a serious risk because strong tidal currents could tear huge areas of land into the sea. Cologne became acknowledged, as a city by the Romans in AD 50, by the name of Colonia Claudia Ara Agrippinensium. A sudden massive expansion of the Black Sea as the Mediterranean Sea burst into it through the Bosporus may have occurred about 7500 BP. Herer the river starts a long journey through Germany. The High Rhine is characterized by numerous dams. At about 180 MBP, in the 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 and Miocene Periods. The Seine, however, runs only through France and so you can get to know Paris, its amazing capital, in a more personal way. This is the Rhine of legend and myth, where the medieval Mouse Tower (Mausturm) lies at water level near Bingen and the castle of Kaub stands on an island in the river. 450-1100)-language text, Articles containing Romansh-language text, Articles containing Italian-language text, Articles containing Transalpine Gaulish-language text, Articles containing Old High German (ca.  Rapid warming and changes of vegetation, to open forest, began about 13,000 BP. For flood protection reasons, the 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. As a result of increasing land clearance (Bronze Age agriculture), in the upland areas (central Germany), the sediment load of the Rhine has strongly increased and delta growth has speeded up. The gorge is quite deep and is the stretch of the river which is known for its many castles and vineyards. 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. The cable car of Koblenz is a relatively new attraction that has been … There are more castles along the Rhine than any other river in the world. If you need a reason to visit, the UNESCO World Heritage website has described the area’s beauty well: “The Rhine is one of the world's great rivers and has witnessed many crucial events in human history. Near Krefeld, the river crosses the Uerdingen line, the line which separates the areas where Low German and High German are spoken. One of its headwaters, the Reno di Lei (stowed in the Lago di Lei), is partially located in Italy. The most important tributaries in this area are the Ill below of Strasbourg, the Neckar in Mannheim and the Main across from Mainz. ; Cologne: Relax with a glass of kölsch by the river and photograph the picturesque houses of Altstadt. 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. The Ruhr, which joins the 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. Get a Britannica Premium subscription and gain access to exclusive content. The Seerhein is only four km long. Other rivers in the Ruhr Area, above all, the Emscher, still carry a considerable degree of pollution. It runs for over 1,232 km (766 mi) from its source in the in the Swiss Alps (in Switzerland), … Near Sankt Goarshausen, the Rhine flows around the famous rock Lorelei. In this stretch the Rhine is joined by its Alpine tributaries, the Thur, Töss, Glatt, and Aare, and by the Wutach from the north. It flows farther west, to rejoin the Noord into the Nieuwe Maas and to the North Sea. 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. Because the levees are some distance from the river, at high tide the Lower Rhine has more room for widening than the Upper Rhine. Until the straightening of the upper Rhine, which began in the early 19th century, the river described a series of great loops, or meanders, over its floodplain, and today their remnants, the old backwaters and cutoffs near Breisach and Karlsruhe, mark the former course of the river. the locus of early Celtic-Germanic cultural contact. The Rhine River runs through several economically-important European countries, such as Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Austria, Germany, France, and the Netherlands. The latter flows west into a sluice at Katwijk, where its waters can be discharged into the North Sea. The Lower Rhine falls from 50 m to 12 m. The main tributaries on this stretch are the Ruhr and the Lippe. In between the zone of Alpine orogeny and North Sea Basin subsidence, highlands resulting from an earlier orogeny (Variscan) remained, such as the Ardennes, Eifel and Vosges. Traveling along and on the Rhine River has long been popular. For a time, the Rhine ceased to be a border, when the Franks crossed the river and occupied Roman-dominated Celtic Gaul, as far as Paris. Once an integral cog in the industrial heritage of Europe, the Rhine now serves as the perfect river cruising destination. At Andernach, where the ancient Roman frontier left the Rhine, the basaltic Seven Hills rise steeply to the east of the river, where, as the English poet Lord Byron put it, “the castle crag of Dachenfels frowns o’er the wide and winding Rhine.”. Above this point is the extensive catchment of the headwaters of the Rhine. The hydrography of the current delta is characterized by the delta's main arms, disconnected arms (Hollandse IJssel, Linge, Vecht, etc.) The actual number of legions present at any base or in all, depended on whether a state or threat of war existed. Seattle: University of Washington Press. The Rhine is 1,320 kilometer (820 miles) long but the best part is the Mittelrhein (Middle Rhine).  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. Articles from Britannica Encyclopedias for elementary and high school students. The Rhine River: The Rhine River is a prominent European river. Here the Rhine flows through the largest conurbation in Germany, the Rhine-Ruhr region. how long id the amazon if it is 1440 km longer than the sum of the other three rivers? From Wijk bij Duurstede, the old north branch of the Rhine is called Kromme Rijn ("Bent Rhine") past Utrecht, first Leidse Rijn ("Rhine of Leiden") and then, Oude Rijn ("Old Rhine"). The Rhine River, Europe’s premier waterway, flows from the Swiss Alps to the North Sea through Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Austria, France, Germany, and the Netherlands.  The engineering of the Rhine was not without protest, farmers and fishermen had grave concerns about valuable fishing areas and farmland being lost. This also became the subject of a film, The Bridge at Remagen. Exploring Boppard. The Upper Rhine has undergone significant human change since the 19th century. Until the early 1980s, industry was a major source of water pollution. On the various parts: Order: panning north to south through the Western Netherlands: This article is about the river. St Goar to Rudesheim: 10:20 13:15. the Middle Rhine flows entirely within Germany. We realised it could be the death of the Rhine otherwise . It then flows through German territory as far as Emmerich, below which its many-branched delta section epitomizes the landscapes characteristic of the Netherlands. The flow of the river follows a northwesterly course and empties into the North Sea. Before the St. Elizabeth's flood (1421), the Meuse flowed just south of today's line Merwede-Oude Maas to the North Sea and formed an archipelago-like estuary with Waal and Lek. Its importance as a waterway in the Holy Roman Empire is supported by the many castles and fortifications built along it. Answer 1 of 13: We will be in Koblenz for a few days towards the end of May. Düsseldorf, on the right bank of the Rhine, is the dominant business centre of the North Rhine–Westphalia coalfield. In this 90-mile (145-km) stretch the Rhine has cut a deep and winding gorge between the steep, slate-covered slopes of the Hunsrück mountains to the west and the Taunus Mountains to the east. Trains run on both banks of the Rhein but nothing beats a cruise on the river itself. The 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 of September 1944. 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. Rhine River Facts. Its course is conventionally divided as follows: The Rhine carries its name without distinctive accessories only from the confluence of the Rein Anteriur/Vorderrhein and Rein Posteriur/Hinterrhein next to Reichenau in Tamins. In the local Alemannic dialect, the singular is pronounced "Isel" and this is also the local pronunciation of Esel ("Donkey"). Since the time when the Rhine valley became incorporated into the Roman Empire, the river has been one of Europe’s leading transport routes. You could actually take a Rhine River day cruise from certain part of the river. By the early Pleistocene period, the Rhine had captured most of its current Alpine watershed from the Rhône, including the Aare. Below Bonn the valley opens out into a broad plain, where the old city of Cologne lies on the left bank of the Rhine. Below Chur, the Rhine leaves the Alps to form the boundary first between Switzerland and the principality of Liechtenstein and then between Switzerland and Austria, before forming a delta as the current slackens at the entrance to Lake Constance. So, if you happen to be visiting Europe anytime soon, make sure to check out one of the most important and fun rivers in … The Rhine Falls are situated below Schaffhausen. The Beneden Merwede branches off, near 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 and continues via Het Scheur and the Nieuwe Waterweg, to the North Sea. Near Sargans a natural dam, only a few metres high, prevents it from flowing into the open Seeztal valley and then through Lake Walen and Lake Zurich into the Aare. 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