- Ditch (fortification)
A ditch in military engineering is an obstacle, designed to slow down or break up an attacking force, while a trench is intended to provide cover to the defenders. In military fortifications the side of a ditch (or gorge) farthest from the enemy and closest to the next line of defence is known as the scarp while the side of a ditch closest to the enemy is known as the counterscarp.
In medieval fortification, a ditch was often constructed in front of a defensive wall to hinder mining and escalade activities from an attacker. When filled with water, such a defensive ditch is called a moat.
Later star forts designed by military engineers like Vauban, comprised elaborate networks of ditches and parapets, carefully calculated so that the soil for the raised earthworks was provided, as nearly as possible, entirely by the excavations whilst also maximising defensive firepower.
Today ditches are obsolescent as an anti-personnel obstacle, but are still often used as anti-vehicle obstacles (see also berm).
A fence concealed in a ditch is called a ha-ha.
Fortifications Since ancient times Since Middle Ages
Arrowslit · Barbican · Bartizan · Bastion · Bent entrance · Bergfried · Caltrop · Castle · Concentric castle · Cheval de frise · Citadel · Curtain wall · Drawbridge · Enceinte · Embrasure · Fortified tower · Gate tower · Gabion · Glacis · Guard tower · Gulyay-gorod · Hoarding · Keep · Kremlin (Detinets) · L-plan castle · Machicolation · Moat · Motte-and-bailey · Murder-hole · Peel tower · Portcullis · Reduit · Shield wall · Toll castle · Tower house · Turret · Wall tower · Ward (Bailey) · Watchtower · Yett
Since Early modern period Since 19th century Fortifications by topography
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
Ditch (disambiguation) — The term ditch may refer to Ditch, a small depression created to channel water Ditch (fortification) Ditch (obstacle), an obstacle in cross country equestrianism Ditching, the controlled but unintentional water landing of an aircraft The Ditch, a … Wikipedia
Fortification — Fort and Fortress redirect here. For other uses, see Fort (disambiguation) and Fortress (disambiguation). For other uses, see Fortification (disambiguation) … Wikipedia
fortification — n 1. strengthening, reinforcement, buttressing, bracing, backing, redoubling; augmentation, addition, magnification, aggrandizement, intensification. 2. battlement, rampart, protection, bastion, Fort. vallation; parapet, blockhouse, Fort.… … A Note on the Style of the synonym finder
Medieval fortification — This article is part of the series on: Medieval History By Region Medieval Armenia Medieval Bosnia Medieval England Bulgarian Empire Byzantine Empire … Wikipedia
Nico Ditch — Looking west along Nico Ditch, near Levenshulme Nico Ditch (occasionally Mickle Ditch or Nikker) is a six mile (9.7 km) long linear earthwork running between Ashton under Lyne and Stretford in Greater Manchester, England. It may have been… … Wikipedia
Curtain wall (fortification) — For the 2011 song by T.I. featuring Christina Aguilera, see Castle Walls. The curtain wall at Krak des Chevaliers, Syria A curtain wall is a defensive wall between two bastions of a castle or fortress … Wikipedia
Ward (fortification) — In fortifications, a bailey or ward refers to a courtyard enclosed by a curtain wall. In particular, an early type of European castle was known as a Motte and bailey. Castles can have more than one ward. Their layout depends both on the local… … Wikipedia
Double Ditch — is an archaeological site located north of Bismarck, North Dakota. Double Ditch was a village inhabited by Mandan Indians for about 300 years from (AD 1490 1785). Mandan Indians were a Native American tribe that lived along the banks of the… … Wikipedia
Agricola's Ditch — is a Roman era defensive structure spanning the width of Britain. This structure was a precursor of Hadrian s Wall [ [http://www.megalithic.co.uk/article.php?sid=18177 C.Michael Hogan (2007) Hadrian s Wall , ed. A. Burnham, The Megalithic Portal] … Wikipedia
Dragon's teeth (fortification) — Not to be confused with Czech hedgehog . United States Army troops passing through dragon s teeth on the Siegfried Line in 1944 … Wikipedia