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The Tollensesee, a glacial finger lake
Map of the Ammersee showing its elongated shape

A Zungenbecken, also called a tongue basin[1] or tongue-basin,[2] is part of a succession of ice age geological landforms, known as a glacial series. It is a hollow that is left behind by the ice mass, as the snout of the glacier (German: Gletscherzunge) recedes, which initially fills with meltwater, forming a proglacial lake, and later may be filled with surface water from streams or precipitation. When the glacier has more fully retreated this produces a finger lake or glacial piedmont lake (German: Zungenbeckensee, known as a Gletscherendsee of the glacial series in the Alpine Foreland). The term Zungenbecken is of German origin, but used in English language sources.[3][4][5]

Examples are the Tegernsee, Ammersee, Starnberger See, Lake Constance, Chiemsee, Tollensesee and the Baltic Sea.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Kohl, Horst; Marcinek, Joachim and Nitz, Bernhard (1986). Geography of the German Democratic Republic, VEB Hermann Haack, Gotha, p. 40. ISBN 978-3-7301-0522-1.
  2. ^ Dickinson, Robert E (1964). Germany: A regional and economic geography (2nd ed.). London: Methuen, p. 32. ASIN B000IOFSEQ.
  3. ^ Somme, Axel (1968). A geography of Norden: Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Heinemann p. 213.
  4. ^ Pfeil (1995). Quaternary field trips in Central Europe, International Union for Quaternary Research, XIV International Congress, August 3–19, 1995, Berlin, Germany, Volume 2.
  5. ^ Charlesworth, J.K. (1966). The Quaternary Era: With Special Reference to its Glaciation, in Two Volumes (Volumes 1–2)