- Plural of strait
A strait is a narrow, navigable channel of water that connects two larger navigable bodies of water. It most commonly refers to a channel of water that lies between two land masses, but it may also refer to a navigable channel through a body of water that is otherwise not navigable, for example because it is too shallow, or because it contains an unnavigable reef or archipelago. The terms strait, channel, passage, sound, and firth can be synonymous and interchangeable, although each is sometimes differentiated with varying senses. Many straits are economically important. Straits can lie on important shipping routes, and wars have been fought for control of these straits. Numerous artificial channels, called canals, have been constructed to connect two bodies of water over land.
Although rivers and canals often form a bridge between two large lakes or a lake and a sea, and these seem to suit the formal definition of straits, they are not usually referred to as straits. Straits are typically much larger, wider structures.
Straits are the duals of isthmi. That is, while straits lie between two land masses and connect two larger bodies of water, isthmi lie between two bodies of water and connect two larger land masses.
A strait is similar to an inlet although inlets typically pass through island land masses usually from a large body of water such as an ocean to a much smaller body such as a bay while straits pass through much larger land masses and connect much larger bodies of water such as seas and oceans.
Well-known straitsWell-known straits in the world include:
- Palk strait, between India and Sri Lanka, the location of Ram Sethu and rich in natural resources
- Strait of Dover, between England and France, which connects the North Sea with the English Channel
- Strait of Gibraltar, the only natural passage between the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea
- Bosporus and the Dardanelles, which connect the Mediterranean and the Black Sea
- Strait of Magellan, connecting the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans north of Tierra del Fuego
- Bering Strait between Alaska and Siberia, which connects the Pacific and Arctic Oceans
- Strait of Hormuz connecting the Persian Gulf and the Oman Sea, through which Persian Gulf petroleum is shipped to the world
- Strait of Malacca, which lies between Peninsular Malaysia and Sumatra, and connects the Indian Ocean with the South China Sea. (It is one of the highest-volume shipping lanes in the world.)
- Bass Strait, which lies between mainland Australia and Tasmania, and connects the Southern Ocean with the Pacific Ocean.
- Cook Strait, separating the North And South Islands of New Zealand
- The Golden Gate, between the Pacific Ocean and San Francisco Bay
- The Bab el Mandeb, connecting the Red Sea and the Arabian Sea.
- The Skagerrak and Kattegat which connect the North Sea to the Baltic Sea.
straits in Afrikaans: Seestraat
straits in Arabic: مضيق
straits in Breton: Strizh-mor
straits in Bulgarian: Проток
straits in Catalan: Estret
straits in Czech: Průliv
straits in Welsh: Culfor
straits in Danish: Stræde (farvand)
straits in German: Meerenge
straits in Estonian: Väin
straits in Modern Greek (1453-): Πορθμός
straits in Spanish: Estrecho
straits in Esperanto: Markolo
straits in Persian: تنگه
straits in French: Détroit
straits in Korean: 해협
straits in Croatian: Tjesnac
straits in Ido: Stretajo
straits in Indonesian: Selat
straits in Ossetian: Донкъубал
straits in Icelandic: Sund
straits in Italian: Stretto
straits in Hebrew: מצר
straits in Swahili (macrolanguage): Mlango wa bahari
straits in Kurdish: Tengav
straits in Latin: Fretum
straits in Hungarian: Szoros
straits in Dutch: Zeestraat
straits in Japanese: 海峡
straits in Polish: Cieśnina
straits in Portuguese: Estreito
straits in Russian: Пролив
straits in Slovenian: Ožina
straits in Finnish: Salmi
straits in Swedish: Sund
straits in Vietnamese: Eo biển
straits in Ukrainian: Протока
straits in Chinese: 海峡
arm, armlet, bay, bayou, belt, bight, bind, boca, broken fortune, clutch, complication, cove, creek, crunch, difficulties, distress, embarrassing position, embarrassment, estuary, euripus, fine how-do-you-do, fjord, frith, genteel poverty, gulf, gut, harbor, hard pinch, hardship, hell to pay, hobble, hot water, how-do-you-do, imbroglio, impecuniosity, impecuniousness, inlet, insolvency, jam, kyle, light purse, loch, mess, mix, morass, mouth, narrow, narrow means, narrow seas, narrows, natural harbor, parlous straits, pass, pickle, pinch, plight, poorness, poverty, predicament, pretty pass, pretty pickle, pretty predicament, quagmire, quicksand, reach, road, roads, roadstead, scrape, slender means, slough, sound, spot, squeeze, stew, sticky wicket, strait, straitened circumstances, swamp, tight spot, tight squeeze, tightrope, tricky spot, unholy mess, unprosperousness, voluntary poverty, vows of poverty