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|Lake type||Endorheic, Saline, Permanent, Natural|
|Primary inflows||Volga River, Ural River, Kura River, Terek River|
|Catchment area||3,626,000 km2 (1,400,000 sq mi)|
|Basin countries||Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Russia, Turkmenistan|
|Max. length||1,030 km (640 mi)|
|Max. width||435 km (270 mi)|
|Surface area||371,000 km2 (143,200 sq mi)|
|Average depth||187 m (610 ft)|
|Max. depth||1,025 m (3,360 ft)|
|Water volume||69,400 km3 (16,600 cu mi)|
|Residence time||250 years|
|Shore length1||7,000 km (4,300 mi)|
|Surface elevation||−28 m (−92 ft)|
|Settlements||Baku (Azerbaijan), Rasht (Iran), Aktau (Kazakhstan), Makhachkala (Russia), Türkmenbaşy (Turkmenistan)|
|1 Shore length is not a well-defined measure.|
The Caspian Sea is the largest lake on Earth by both area and volume. It has a surface area of 371,000 square kilometres (143,000 square miles). Its volume is 78,200 cubic kilometres (18,800 cubic miles). The Caspian has for 40 to 44% of the total lake waters of the world.
The Caspian sea is an endorheic body of water. It is bordered by Russia, Azerbaijan, Iran, Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan. It has a maximum depth of about 1,025 metres (3,363 ft). It is called a sea because when the Romans first arrived there, they tasted the water and found it to be salty. It has a salinity of approximately 1.2%, about a third the salinity of sea water.
- van der Leeden, Troise, and Todd, eds. 1990. The Water Encyclopedia. 2nd ed, Chelsea, MI: Lewis Publishers, p196
- "Caspian Sea". Iran Gazette. http://web.archive.org/web/20090122212158/http://irangazette.com/12.html. Retrieved 2010-05-17.
- Caspian Sea Region
- Framework Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Caspian Sea (2003)
- Target: Caspian Sea Oil John Robb, 2004