Geographic Lexicon

The Geographer's Lexicon

A Thesaurus of Geographical Terms

Archipelago

  1. A large group of islands
  2. A sea containing a large group of islands

Bank

  1. A mound, pile, or ridge
  2. A steep natural incline
  3. The slope of land next to a lake, river, or sea
  4. A large elevated area of sea floor

Basin

  1. A large or small depression in the surface of the land or in the ocean floor.

Bay

  1. An inlet of the sea or other body of water usually smaller than a gulf
  2. A body of water partly enclosed by land but having a wide outlet to the sea
  3. A broad stretch of lowland between hills
  4. An arm of prairie enclosed by woodlands

Bayou

  1. Any of various usually marshy or sluggish bodies of water

Beach

  1. A shore of an ocean sea or lake or the bank of a river covered by sand or gravel or larger rock fragments

Bight

  1. A bend in a coast forming an open bay

Bluff

  1. A high steep bank

Bluffs

  1. A place with more than one bluff

Branch

  1. A stream that flows into another usually larger stream

Bridge

  1. A structure carrying a pathway or roadway over a watercourse, depression, or obstacle

Brook

  1. A tiny river or creek

Butte

  1. An isolated hill or mountain with steep, or precipitous, sides usually having a smaller summit area than a mesa

Camp

  1. A temporary settlement newly sprung up, a new lumbering or mining town
  2. The assortment of smiths, porters, haulers, and other camp followers that help keep a large army fed, clothed, armed, and armored

Canal

  1. An artificial waterway for both navigation, swamp draining, or irrigating crop land

Canyon

  1. A deep narrow valley with steep sides and often with a stream flowing through it

Cape

  1. A point or extension of land jutting out into water, as a peninsula, or as a projecting point

Castle

  1. A large fortified building or set of buildings

Causeway

  1. A raised way across the land, wet ground, or water

Cave

  1. A natural underground chamber or series of chambers open to the surface

Caverns

  1. A collection of multiple interconnected caves

Caves

  1. A place of with several nearby caves

Chapel

  1. A place of worship serving a residence or institution

City

  1. An inhabited place of greater size population or importance than a town or village

Cities

  1. A group of multiple cities

Cliff

  1. A very steep vertical slope, or overhanging face of rock or ice

Coast

  1. The land near the shore, or land adjacent to a body of water

Corner

  1. A place of intersection of two streets or roads

Cove

  1. A small sheltered inlet or bay

Crag

  1. A steep rugged rock or cliff

Crater

  1. A bowl-shaped depression around the opening of a volcano, or produced by the impact of a meteorite, or created with a great explosion

Creek

  1. A natural stream of water normally smaller than and often tributary to a river

Croft

  1. A small enclosed field usually adjoining a house

Dale

  1. A small valley or vale

Dam

  1. An area where the natural passage of water is blocked by debris forming a pond or lake # A barrier constructed across a waterway to control the flow of the water, or to raise the level of the water

Delta

  1. An alluvial deposit of silt or mud at the mouth of a river

Desert

  1. An arid barren land
  2. Sandy wastelands
  3. Dry areas without much water or rainfall

Dike

  1. A bank usually of earth constructed to control or confine water

Dikes

  1. A place with many dikes

Ditch

  1. A long narrow excavation dug in the earth

Falls

  1. A precipitous descent of water
  2. A place of one or more waterfalls

Farm

  1. A tract of land devoted to agricultural or farming purposes

Ferry

  1. A place where persons or things are carried across a body of water (as a river) in a boat, or raft

Field

  1. An open area free of woods or buildings

Fjord

  1. A narrow inlet of sea between cliffs or steep slopes

Flats

  1. A level surface of land

Foot

  1. The base or lowest point beneath a hill, in a valley, or beneath a mountain

Ford

  1. A shallow part of a body of water that can be crossed by wading

Forest

  1. A dense grove of trees and underbrush covering a large area

Forests

  1. An area with multiple forests

Fork

  1. A place where a river or road branches into two or more parts

Forks

  1. A place of several forks

Fort

  1. A stronghold, or fortified place

Fumarole

  1. A hole in a volcanic region from which hot gases and vapors issue

Gap

  1. A break or pass through the mountains
  2. An opening, a fissure
  3. A break in the continuity of any geographic feature

Gate

  1. An opening in a wall or fence or a city or castle entrance often with defensive structures

Glacier

  1. A large body of ice moving slowly down a slope or valley or spreading outward on a land surface

Glen

  1. A secluded narrow valley

Gorge

  1. A narrow passage through land, especially a narrow steep-walled canyon or part of a canyon

Grasslands

  1. Land on which the natural dominant plant forms are grasses

Green

  1. A common area, or park in the center of a town or village

Ground

  1. The solid surface of the earth
  2. An area used for a particular purpose
  3. Soil, earth

Grove

  1. A small wood usually without underbrush

Gulf

  1. A part of the ocean or sea enclosed by land
  2. A deep wide chasm or abyss

Hamlet

  1. A cluster or aggregation of houses recognized as a distinct place with a place-name

Harbor

  1. A part of a body of water protected and deep enough to furnish anchorage for ships, especially one with port facilities

Haven

  1. A harbor or port
  2. A naturally formed shelter on the coastline
  3. A place of refuge, sanctuary

Head

  1. The source of a stream

Heights

  1. An extended area of land rising to a considerable degree above the surrounding country

Highway

  1. A road lying outside of an urban district, often elevated

Hill

  1. A usually rounded natural elevation of land lower than a mountain

Hills

  1. A chain of individual hills, often at the base of a mountain range
  2. An area with multiple hills

Hillside

  1. The sloped part of a hill between the summit and the foot

Hole

  1. A cave, pit, opening, or well in the ground

Hollow

  1. A small valley or basin

Hollows

  1. A group of hollows

Horn

  1. A body of land or water shaped like a horn

Inlet

  1. A stream or bay leading inland, as from the ocean
  2. An estuary
  3. A narrow passage of water between two islands

Island

  1. A tract of land surrounded by water and smaller than a continent

Islands

  1. A group or chain of islands

Junction

  1. An intersection of roads especially where one road or path terminates or ends

Key

  1. A low island or reef

Knob

  1. A rounded usually isolated hill or mountain

Lagoon

  1. A shallow channel or pond close to, near, or communicating with a larger body of water

Lake

  1. A considerable inland body of standing water
  2. A body of fresh water surrounded by land

Lakes

  1. A place of multiple lakes

Land

  1. A portion of the earth's solid surface distinguishable by boundaries or ownership

Landing

  1. A place (usually near a watercourse) for discharging and taking on passengers and cargo

Lane

  1. A narrow passageway between fences or hedges
  2. A relatively narrow way or track

Lick

  1. A natural salt deposit that animals lick

Loch

  1. A lake or an arm of the sea similar to a fjord

Manor

  1. The house or hall of an estate

Market

  1. A public place where trading and barter occurs

Marsh

  1. A tract of soft wet lands usually characterized by shallow lakes, grasses, and cattails

Meadow

  1. A tract of low-lying usually level grassland

Mesa

  1. An isolated relatively flat-topped natural elevation usually more extensive than a butte and less extensive than a plateau

Monument

  1. A structure or building erected as a memorial
  2. Any place or region designated as having special meaning or significance

Moor

  1. A boggy area of wasteland usually peaty and dominated by grasses and sedges

Mount

  1. A mountain, or extremely large hill

Mountain

  1. A landmass that projects conspicuously above its surroundings and is higher than a hill

Mountains

  1. A chain of peaks or high places

Mouth

  1. A place where a stream enters a larger body of water

Neck

  1. A narrow stretch of land

Outcrop

  1. The part of a rock formation that appears at and above the surface of the ground

Paddock

  1. A fenced area, usually near a stable for grazing horses

Paddy

  1. A specially irrigated or flooded field where rice is grown

Pass

  1. A low place or gap in a mountain range allowing easier passage over the mountains

Peak

  1. The top of a hill or mountain ending in a point, also known as the summit

Peninsula

  1. A portion of land nearly surrounded by water and connected with a larger body of water usually by an isthmus
  2. Land that is almost an island connected to the mainland by a narrow strip of land

Pit

  1. A hole, shaft, or deep cavity in the ground

Plain

  1. An extensive area of low rolling hills, or level treeless country
  2. Flatlands, open to view

Point

  1. A projecting, usually tapered piece of land or sharp prominence
  2. A promontory or high place overlooking the sea

Pond

  1. A body of water usually smaller than a lake

Port

  1. A place where ships may ride secure from storms
  2. Also a harbor, town, or city, with docks where ships may take on or discharge cargo

Pool

  1. A small and rather deep body of usually fresh water

Quarter

  1. A division or district of a town or city

Range

  1. An extended chain of mountains

Rapids

  1. A part of a river where the current is fast and the surface is usually broken by obstructions

Reef

  1. A chain of rocks, coral, or a ridge of sand, at, or very close to, the surface of the water

Region

  1. An administrative area division or district

Ridge

  1. A range of hills or mountains with an extended spine of connected summits

Rift

  1. A shallow or rocky place in a stream

Rift Valley

  1. An elongated valley formed by the depression of a block of the earth's crust between two faults or groups of faults of approximately parallel strike

River

  1. A natural stream of water of considerable volume, can be up to several miles wide

Road

  1. An open way, or prepared path for vehicles, persons, and animals

Rock

  1. A large mass of stone forming a cliff, promontory, or peak

Sands

  1. A tract or large area of sand, a sandbank, or a sandbar

Sea

  1. A great body of salt water completely or partly landlocked
  2. An area within an ocean
  3. An enormous body of fresh water
  4. Something that suggests a vastness, or an overwhelming open area

Seep

  1. A place where water, tar, or oil trickles out of the ground forming a pool

Shoal

  1. A submerged sandbank or sandbar that makes the water above it extremely shallow

Shore

  1. The land bordering a usually large body of water

Sound

  1. A large wide body of water larger than a strait or channel connecting larger bodies of water or seas

Spit

  1. A small point of land especially of sand or gravel running into a body of water

Spring

  1. A source of water issuing from the ground

Stack

  1. A large roughly conical pile of earth or rock

Station

  1. A regular stopping place along a transportation route

Strait

  1. A comparatively narrow passageway connecting two larger bodies of water

Strand

  1. A land bordering a body of water like coastal sandbars and islands that run parallel to the shore

Stream

  1. A small river or creek

Street

  1. A thoroughfare, or road esp. in a city, town, or village, that is wider than an alley or lane and usually includes sidewalks

Summit

  1. The highest point of a hill, peak, or mountain

Swamp

  1. Wet spongy land saturated and sometimes partially or intermittently covered with water

Temple

  1. An edifice or structure for religious exercises and rituals

Territory

  1. A geographical area belonging to or under the jurisdiction of a governmental authority

Thicket

  1. A dense growth of shrubbery or small trees

Town

  1. A compactly settled area as distinguished from surrounding rural territory and wilderness

Track

  1. A path made by repeating or frequent footfalls by men, monsters, or animals

Valley

  1. A lengthy depression of the earth's surface usually between ranges of hills or mountains

Village

  1. A settlement usually larger than a hamlet and smaller than a town

Volcano

  1. A vent or tear in the earths' crust through which lava, magma, steam, and other hot gas are ejected
  2. A mountain formed by the materials ejected from a volcano

Walk

  1. A path specially arranged, or paved, for walking

Wash

  1. A very shallow creek, or the dry bed of a stream

Waste

  1. A sparsely settled, or barren region

Water

  1. A particular body or source of water

Waters

  1. A place with several ponds, rivers, or lakes

Way

  1. A thoroughfare for travel or transportation from place to place

Well

  1. An issue of water from the earth
  2. A pit dug deep enough into the earth to reach the water table where freshwater can be extracted
  3. A source of non-physical energy

Wilderness

  1. A tract or region uncultivated and uninhabited by human beings

Wood

  1. A dense grove of trees usually greater in extent than a grove and smaller than a forest

Woods

  1. An area smaller than a forest with multiple dense groves of trees