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[seysh] /seɪʃ/
an occasional and sudden oscillation of the water of a lake, bay, estuary, etc., producing fluctuations in the water level and caused by wind, earthquakes, changes in barometric pressure, etc.
Origin of seiche
1830-40; < Franco-Provençal Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for seiche
  • Once the winds cease or shift direction, a standing wave called a seiche may occur.
  • Wind and seiche effects may cause substantial short-term changes in elevations, which are not shown in the mean daily values.
  • seiche-The sloshing of a closed body of water as a result of an earthquake.
  • Ground shaking may cause seiche, the rhythmic sloshing of water in lakes or bays.
  • The user can import existing seiche inundation maps and overlay them with population and economic value maps.
  • When in the ocean, a wave of this sort is called a tsunami wave, whereas in a smaller body of water it is called a seiche.
British Dictionary definitions for seiche


a periodic oscillation of the surface of an enclosed or semienclosed body of water (lake, inland sea, bay, etc) caused by such phenomena as atmospheric pressure changes, winds, tidal currents, and earthquakes
Word Origin
C19: from Swiss French, first used to describe the rise and fall of water in Lake Geneva; of obscure origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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seiche in Science
  (sāsh, sēch)   
An oscillating wave in an enclosed body of water. A seiche may have a period from a few minutes to a few hours and is usually a result of seismic or atmospheric disturbances.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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