Beautiful Africa

Sea of Marmara

The Sea of Marmara /?m?rm?r?/ (Greek: ? ? ?, Turkish: Marmara Denizi), also known as the Sea of Marmora or the Marmara Sea, and in the context of classical antiquity as the Propontis (Greek: ?), is the inland sea that connects the Black Sea to the Aegean Sea, thus separating Turkey's Asian and European parts. The Bosphorus strait connects it to the Black Sea and the Dardanelles strait to the Aegean. The former also separates Istanbul into its Asian and European sides. The Sea has an area of 11,350 km? (280 km x 80 km)[1] with the greatest depth reaching 1,370 m. Geography The salinity of the sea averages about 22 parts per thousand, which is slightly greater than that of the Black Sea but only about two-thirds that of most oceans. However, the water is much more saline at the sea-bottom, averaging salinities of around 38 parts per thousand similar to that of the Mediterranean Sea. This high-density saline water, like that of the Black Sea itself, does not migrate to the surface. Water from the Susurluk, Biga (Granicus) and Gonen Rivers also reduces the salinity of the sea, though with less influence than on the Black Sea. With little land in Thrace draining southward, almost all of these rivers flow from Anatolia. There are two major island groups known as the Princes' and Marmara islands (including Avsa a

d Pasaliman?). The south coast of the sea is heavily indented, and includes the Gulf of Izmit (Turkish: Izmit Korfezi), the Gulf of Gemlik (Turkish: Gemlik Korfezi) and the Gulf of Erdek (Turkish: Erdek Korfezi). During a storm on December 29, 1999, the Russian oil tanker Volgoneft broke in two in the Sea of Marmara, and more than 1500 tonnes of oil were spilled into the water. The North Anatolian fault, which has triggered many major earthquakes in recent years, such as the Izmit Earthquake of 1999, runs under the sea. [edit]Extent The International Hydrographic Organization defines the limits of the Sea of Marmara as follows:[2] On the West. The Dardanelles limit of the ?gean Sea [A line joining Kum Kale (2611'E) and Cape Helles]. On the Northeast. A line joining Cape Rumili with Cape Anatoli (4113'N). [edit]Name The sea takes its name from the island of Marmara, which is rich in sources of marble, from the Greek (marmaron), "marble".[3] The sea's ancient Greek name Propontis derives from pro (before) and pont- (sea), deriving from the fact that the Greeks sailed through it to reach the Black Sea. In Greek mythology, a storm on Propontis brought the Argonauts back to an island they had left, precipitating a battle where either Jason or Heracles killed King Cyzicus, who mistook them for his Pelasgian enemies.[4]