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chernozem

[chur-nuh-zem, chair-; Russian chyir-nuh-zyawm]
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noun
  1. a soil common in cool or temperate semiarid climates, very black and rich in humus and carbonates.
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Origin of chernozem

1835–45; < Russian chernozëm, equivalent to chërn(yĭ) black + -o- -o- + -zëm, variant, in compounds, of zemlyá earth, land; see humus
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for chernozem

Historical Examples

  • This is the black earth known as chernozem, which is rich in humus.

    Area Handbook for Romania

    Eugene K. Keefe, Donald W. Bernier, Lyle E. Brenneman, William Giloane, James M. Moore, and Neda A. Walpole

  • About 20 percent of the agricultural land is of the chernozem type.

    Area Handbook for Romania

    Eugene K. Keefe, Donald W. Bernier, Lyle E. Brenneman, William Giloane, James M. Moore, and Neda A. Walpole

  • Chernozem soils predominate, and the seasonal distribution of rainfall is more propitious than in Walachia.

    Area Handbook for Romania

    Eugene K. Keefe, Donald W. Bernier, Lyle E. Brenneman, William Giloane, James M. Moore, and Neda A. Walpole


British Dictionary definitions for chernozem

chernozem

tschernosem

noun
  1. a black soil, rich in humus and carbonates, in cool or temperate semiarid regions, as the grasslands of Russia
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Word Origin

from Russian, contraction of chernaya zemlya black earth
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for chernozem

n.

1842, from Russian chernozem, literally "black earth," from chernyi "black," from PIE *kers- "dark, dirty" (see Krishna) + zemlya "earth, soil," from Old Russian zemi "land, earth," from PIE *dhghem- "earth" (see chthonic).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper