monsoon


monsoon
monsoonal, adj.
/mon soohn"/, n.
1. the seasonal wind of the Indian Ocean and southern Asia, blowing from the southwest in summer and from the northeast in winter.
2. (in India and nearby lands) the season during which the southwest monsoon blows, commonly marked by heavy rains; rainy season.
3. any wind that changes directions with the seasons.
4. any persistent wind established between water and adjoining land.
[1575-85; < D monssoen (now obs.) < Pg monção, earlier moução < Ar mawsim season]

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Major wind system that seasonally reverses its direction (e.g., one that blows for six months from the northeast and six months from the southwest).

The most prominent examples occur in Africa and southern Asia. The primary cause of monsoons is the difference between annual temperature trends over land and sea. Seasonal changes in temperature are large over land but small over oceans. A monsoon blows from cold toward warm regions: from sea toward land in summer and from land toward sea in winter. Most summer monsoons produce copious amounts of rain; winter monsoons tend to cause drought.

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      any of a type of major wind system that seasonally reverses its direction—e.g., one that blows for approximately six months from the northeast and six months from the southwest. The most prominent examples of such seasonal winds occur in southern Asia and in Africa. Monsoonal tendencies also are apparent along the Gulf Coast of the United States and in central Europe, as well as in various other areas.

      The primary cause of monsoons lies in the difference of the annual temperature trends over land and sea, though other factors may be involved as well. Seasonal changes in temperature are large over land but small over ocean waters. A monsoon blows from cold toward warm regions: from sea toward land in summer and from land toward sea in winter. Atmospheric pressure is high in cold regions and low in warm ones, permitting the movement of air to occur.

      At the poleward limit of a monsoon system, the winds shift sharply. In India, for example, the monsoon blows from the southwest in July–August, while north of India the winds are from the east. Over northern Australia the monsoon comes from the northwest in January–February, and at the southern limit the winds again become easterly.

      Most summer monsoons have a dominant westerly component and a strong tendency to ascend and produce copious amounts of rain (because of the condensation of water vapour in the rising air). The intensity and duration, however, are not uniform from year to year. Winter monsoons, by contrast, have a dominant easterly component and a strong tendency to diverge, subside, and cause drought.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Monsoon — Mon*soon , n. [Malay m[=u]sim, fr. Ar. mausim a time, season: cf. F. monson, mousson, Sr. monzon, Pg. mon[,c][ a]o, It. monsone.] A wind blowing part of the year from one direction, alternating with a wind from the opposite direction; a term… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • monsoon — ► NOUN 1) a seasonal prevailing wind in the region of the Indian subcontinent and SE Asia, bringing rain when blowing from the south west. 2) the rainy season (typically May to September) accompanying the south west monsoon. DERIVATIVES monsoonal …   English terms dictionary

  • monsoon — (n.) 1580s, trade wind of the Indian Ocean, from Du. monssoen, from Port. monçao, from Arabic mawsim time of year, appropriate season (for a voyage, pilgrimage, etc.), from wasama he marked. When it blows from the southwest (April through… …   Etymology dictionary

  • monsoon — [män so͞on′] n. [MDu monssoen < Port monção < Ar mausim, a time, a season] 1. a seasonal wind of the Indian Ocean and S Asia, blowing from the southwest from April to October, and from the northeast during the rest of the year 2. the season …   English World dictionary

  • Monsoon — This article is about the seasonal winds. For other uses, see Monsoon (disambiguation). Part of the Nature series on …   Wikipedia

  • Monsoon — Durch den Monsun Durch den Monsun et Monsoon sont des singles du groupe de rock allemand Tokio Hotel. Durch den Monsun est le premier single du groupe, extrait de l album Schrei. Il est sorti le 15 août 2005. La version anglaise Monsoon est le… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • monsoon — noun ADJECTIVE ▪ summer, winter MONSOON + VERB ▪ set in ▪ The monsoon sets in during April. MONSOON + NOUN ▪ …   Collocations dictionary

  • monsoon — [[t]mɒnsu͟ːn[/t]] monsoons 1) N COUNT: oft the N The monsoon is the season in Southern Asia when there is a lot of very heavy rain. ...the end of the monsoon. ...monsoon flooding. 2) N PLURAL: oft the N Monsoon rains are sometimes referred to as… …   English dictionary

  • monsoon — UK [mɒnˈsuːn] / US [mɑnˈsun] noun [countable] Word forms monsoon : singular monsoon plural monsoons a period of heavy rain in India and Southeast Asia a) the wind that causes a monsoon b) the rain that falls during a monsoon …   English dictionary

  • monsoon — /mɒnˈsun / (say mon soohn) noun 1. any major wind system which reverses in direction seasonally, usually creating a difference between dry and rainy seasons. 2. a rainy season associated with a monsoon, as the wet season of northern Australia… …   Australian English dictionary


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