AskDefine | Define sea

Dictionary Definition

sea adj : relating to or characteristic of or occurring on the sea or ships; "sea stories"; "sea smells"; "sea traffic" [syn: sea(a)] [ant: air(a), land(a)]


1 a division of an ocean or a large body of salt water partially enclosed by land
2 anything apparently limitless in quantity or volume [syn: ocean]
3 turbulent water with swells of considerable size; "heavy seas"

User Contributed Dictionary

see SEA



From etyl enm see < etyl ang sæ < , of unknown origin.


  • , /siː/, /si:/
  • Rhymes: -iː



  1. A large body of salty water. (Major seas are known as oceans.)
body of water

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es-verb-form ser

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Extensive Definition

This article is about the body of water. For other uses, see SEA and seas. For the ancient Jewish unit of volume, see Seah (unit). For the Smirnoff advertising campaign, see Sea (Smirnoff advert)
A sea is either a large expanse of saline water connected with an ocean, or a large, usually saline, lake that lacks a natural outlet such as the Caspian Sea and the Dead Sea. Colloquially, the term is used synonymous with ocean. Large lakes, such as the Great Lakes, are sometimes referred to as inland seas. Marginal seas are those that have currents caused by ocean winds, and mediterranean seas are those in which currents are caused by differentials in salinity and temperature.

International Hydrographic Organization

The International Hydrographic Organization (IHO) is the international authority that sets forth nomenclature and definition of bodies of water. The IHO's Limits of Oceans and Seas was first published in 1928, with its current working document the third edition published in 1953. A fourth draft edition was proposed in 1986 but has yet to ratified due to outstanding issues such as the Sea of Japan naming dispute.

List of seas

† Not listed in IHO S-23 4th ed. (There are 113 Seas on Earth.)


Some bodies of water that are called "seas" are not actually seas; there are also some seas that are not called "seas". The following is an incomplete list of such potentially confusing names.
  • The Sea of Galilee is a small freshwater lake with a natural outlet, which is properly called Lake Tiberias or Lake Kinneret on modern Israeli maps, but its original name remains in use.
  • The Sea of Cortés is more commonly known as the Gulf of California.
  • The Persian Gulf is a sea.
  • The Dead Sea is actually a lake, as is the Caspian Sea.

Extraterrestrial seas

See also Extraterrestrial liquid water
Lunar maria are vast basaltic plains on the Moon that were thought to be bodies of water by early astronomers, who referred to them as "seas".
Liquid water may have existed on the surface of Mars in the distant past, and several basins on Mars have been proposed as dry sea beds. The largest is Vastitas Borealis; others include Hellas Planitia and Argyre Planitia.
Liquid water is thought to be present under the surface of several moons, most notably Europa.
Liquid hydrocarbons are thought to be present on the surface of Titan, though it may be more accurate to describe them as "lakes" rather than "seas".


The term "sea" has also been used in quantum physics. Dirac sea is an interpretation of the negative energy states that comprises the vacuum.

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sea in Arabic: بحر
sea in Aragonese: Mar
sea in Official Aramaic (700-300 BCE): ܝܡܐ
sea in Aymara: Lamara
sea in Min Nan: Hái
sea in Banyumasan: Segara
sea in Belarusian: Мора
sea in Belarusian (Tarashkevitsa): Мора
sea in Central Bicolano: Dagat
sea in Bavarian: Meer
sea in Bosnian: More (voda)
sea in Breton: Mor
sea in Bulgarian: Море
sea in Catalan: Mar
sea in Czech: Moře
sea in Welsh: Môr
sea in Danish: Hav
sea in German: Meer
sea in Estonian: Meri
sea in Modern Greek (1453-): Θάλασσα
sea in Spanish: Mar
sea in Esperanto: Maro
sea in Basque: Itsaso
sea in Persian: دریا
sea in French: Mer
sea in Friulian: Mâr
sea in Galician: Mar
sea in Korean: 바다
sea in Hindi: सागर
sea in Croatian: More
sea in Ido: Maro
sea in Indonesian: Laut
sea in Ossetian: Денджыз
sea in Icelandic: Sjór
sea in Italian: Mare
sea in Hebrew: ים
sea in Javanese: Segara
sea in Georgian: ზღვა
sea in Kongo: Kalunga
sea in Haitian: Lamè
sea in Ladino: Mar
sea in Lao: ທະເລ
sea in Latin: Mare
sea in Latvian: Jūra
sea in Luxembourgish: Mier
sea in Lithuanian: Jūra
sea in Lojban: xamsi
sea in Hungarian: Tenger
sea in Macedonian: Море
sea in Malay (macrolanguage): Laut
sea in Mongolian: Тэнгис
sea in Dutch: Zee
sea in Dutch Low Saxon: Zee
sea in Japanese: 海
sea in Norwegian: Hav
sea in Norwegian Nynorsk: Hav
sea in Narom: Mé
sea in Occitan (post 1500): Mar
sea in Uzbek: Dengiz
sea in Low German: Meer
sea in Polish: Morze
sea in Portuguese: Mar
sea in Romanian: Mare
sea in Quechua: Hatun qucha
sea in Russian: Море
sea in Albanian: Deti
sea in Sicilian: Mari
sea in Simple English: Sea
sea in Slovak: More
sea in Slovenian: Morje
sea in Serbian: Море
sea in Serbo-Croatian: More
sea in Sundanese: Sagara
sea in Finnish: Meri
sea in Swedish: Hav
sea in Tagalog: Dagat
sea in Tamil: கடல்
sea in Thai: ทะเล
sea in Vietnamese: Biển
sea in Tajik: Баҳр
sea in Turkish: Deniz
sea in Ukrainian: Море
sea in Venetian: Mar
sea in Walloon: Mer
sea in Wolof: Géej
sea in Yiddish: ים
sea in Contenese: 海
sea in Zeeuws: Zeê
sea in Samogitian: Jūra
sea in Chinese: 海

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

abundance, acres, bags, barrels, big drink, billow, blue, blue water, bore, breakers, brine, briny, bushel, chop, choppiness, chopping sea, comb, comber, copiousness, countlessness, deep, dirty water, drink, eagre, flood, gravity wave, ground swell, heave, heavy sea, heavy swell, high sea, high seas, hydrosphere, lift, load, lop, main, main sea, mass, mountain, much, multitude, numerousness, ocean, ocean depths, ocean main, ocean sea, oceans, peak, peck, plenitude, plenty, popple, profusion, quantities, quantity, riffle, ripple, rise, roll, roller, rough water, salt sea, salt water, scend, send, spate, superabundance, superfluity, surf, surge, swell, thalassa, the bounding main, the brine, the briny, the briny deep, the deep, the deep sea, the seven seas, the vasty deep, tidal bore, tidal wave, tide, tide wave, tons, trough, tsunami, undulation, volume, water wave, wave, wavelet, white horses, whitecaps, world, worlds
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