Levee

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A levee, levée, dike (or dyke), embankment, floodbank or stopbank is a natural or artificial slope or wall to regulate water levels. It is usually earthen and often parallel to the course of a river or the coast.[1]

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Etymology

Levee

The word levee, from the French word levée (from the feminine past participle of the French verb lever, "to raise"), is used in American English (notably in the Midwest and Deep South); it came into English use in New Orleans circa 1720.[2] The French pronunciation is [ləˈve], English /ˈlɛviː/.

Dike

The modern word dike is most probably derived from the Dutch word "dijk", with the construction of dikes in the Netherlands well attested since the 12th century. The 126 kilometres (78 mi) long Westfriese Omringdijk, for instance, was completed by 1250, and was formed by connecting existing older dikes. The Roman chronicler Tacitus however mentions the fact that the rebellious Batavi pierced dikes to flood their land and to protect their retreat (AD 70).[3] The Dutch word dijk meant originally both the trench or the bank. The word is closely related to the English verb to dig (EWN).

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