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Lake Peipsi-Pihkva
Peipsi järv, Pihkva järv
Чудско-Псковское озеро
Landsat satellite photo
Location Estonia, Russia
Coordinates 58°41′N 27°29′E / 58.683°N 27.483°E / 58.683; 27.483Coordinates: 58°41′N 27°29′E / 58.683°N 27.483°E / 58.683; 27.483
Primary inflows Emajõgi, Velikaya
Primary outflows Narva
Catchment area 47,800 km2 (18,500 sq mi)
Basin countries Estonia, Russia, Latvia, Belarus
Surface area 3,555 km2 (1,373 sq mi)
Average depth 7.1 m (23 ft)
Max. depth 15.3 m (50 ft)
Water volume 25 km3 (6.0 cu mi)
Shore length1 520 km (320 mi)
Surface elevation 30 m (98 ft)
Islands Piirissaar, Kolpina, Kamenka
Settlements Mustvee, Kallaste
1 Shore length is not a well-defined measure.

Lake Peipsi-Pihkva,[1][2] sometimes also called Peipus[3] (Estonian: Peipsi järv, Pihkva järv; Russian: Чудско-Псковское озеро (Chudskoe-Pskovskoe), German: Peipussee) is the biggest transboundary and fourth largest fresh water lake in Europe,[4] on the border between Estonia (part of European Union) and Russia.

The lake is fifth largest in Europe after Lake Ladoga and Lake Onega in Russia north of St. Petersburg, Lake Vänern in Sweden and Lake Saimaa in Finland.[5]

Lake Peipsi-Pihkva is a remnant of a bigger body of water which existed in this area during an Ice Age. It covers 3,500 km², and has an average depth of 7 m, the deepest point being 15 m. The lake has several islands and consists of 3 parts:

  • Lake Peipsi/Chudskoe (Estonian: Peipsi järv, Russian: Чудское озеро) is the Northern part of the lake. It covers 2670 km².
  • Lake Pihkva/Pskovskoe (Estonian: Pihkva järv, Russian: Псковское озеро) is the Southern part of the lake. It covers 710 km².
  • Lake Lämmijärv/Teploe (Estonian: Lämmijärv, Russian: Тёплое озеро) is the sound connecting both parts of the lake. It covers 170 km².

The lake is used for fishing and recreation, but suffered from some environmental degradation from Soviet era agriculture. Some 30 rivers and streams discharge into the Lake Peipus. Largest rivers are Emajõgi and Velikaya River. The lake is drained by Narva River.

In 1242 it was the site of the Battle of Lake Peipus (known in Russia as Battle on the Ice, in Estonia Jäälahing) between the Teutonic Knights and Novgorodians under Alexander Nevski.


  1. ^ O'Sullivan, P. E.; C.S. Reynolds (2004). The Lakes Handbook. Blackwell Publishing. pp. 74. ISBN 9780632047970.  
  2. ^ Unesco (1973). Hydrology of Lakes. International Association of Hydrological Sciences.  
  3. ^ World Water Assessment Programme; Kofi A. (FRW) Annan (2003). The United Nations World Water Development Report. Berghahn Books. pp. 404. ISBN 9781571816276.  
  4. ^ see the UN World Water Development Report
  5. ^ Kapanen, Galya; Jaan–Mati Punning, Irina Blinova, and Külli Kangur (2008). "The Roles of Natural and Anthropogenic Factors of Ecological State in the Lake Peipsi". International Journal of Applied Science, Engineering and Technology. Retrieved 2008-10-15.  

External links



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