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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Bertha \Ber"tha\, n. [F. berthe, fr. Berthe, a woman's name.] A kind of collar or cape worn by ladies.

Big Bertha, n. a large cannon used by the German army during World War I.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

fem. proper name, from Old High German Berahta, Perahta, the name of a goddess, literally "the bright one," from Old High German beraht, related to Old English beorht (see bright). Soldiers' nickname Big Bertha for large-bore German mortar of World War I is a reference to Frau Bertha Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach, owner of Krupp steel works 1903-43.


n. A lace collar that covers the shoulders of a dress

Bertha, MN -- U.S. city in Minnesota
Population (2000): 470
Housing Units (2000): 228
Land area (2000): 1.025719 sq. miles (2.656600 sq. km)
Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km)
Total area (2000): 1.025719 sq. miles (2.656600 sq. km)
FIPS code: 05482
Located within: Minnesota (MN), FIPS 27
Location: 46.267377 N, 95.063868 W
ZIP Codes (1990): 56437
Note: some ZIP codes may be omitted esp. for suburbs.
Bertha, MN

Bertha is a female Germanic name, from Old High German berhta meaning "bright one".

The name occurs as a theonym, surviving as Berchta, a figure in Alpine folklore connected to the Wild Hunt, probably an epithet of * Frijjō in origin.

Bertha appears as a Frankish given name from as early as the 6th century. The monothematic Bertha as a given name may however not originate with the theonym but rather as a short form of dithematic given names including the "bright" element. This is notably the case with the mother of Charlemagne, Bertrada (properly berht-rada "bright counsel") called "Bertha Broadfoot". Carolingian uses of the name Bertha, as in the case of Bertha, daughter of Charlemagne and Bertha, daughter of Lothair II, are in this tradition.

In modern times, the name is associated with machines that are abnormally large, and many large machines are nicknamed Bertha. This is largely because of the World-War I howitzer known as Big Bertha.

Women named Bertha include:

  • Saint Bertha of Kent (539-c. 612), Queen of Kent
  • Saint Bertha of Val d'Or (d. c. 690), abbess
  • Saint Bertha of Artois (mid 7th century - July 4, 725), abbess, daughter of Count Rigobert and Ursana
  • Bertrada of Laon (also called Bertha with the big feet) (720-783), Frankish queen
  • Saint Bertha of Bingen (fl. c. 840?), mother of Saint Rupert of Bingen
  • Bertha, daughter of Lothair II (died 925)
  • Blessed Bertha de Bardi, Florence; (d. March 24, 1163)
  • Bertha, Duchess of Brittany (c. 1114-1156)
  • Bertha of Burgundy (952, 964 or 967 – 1010, 16 January 1016, or 1035), queen of France
  • Bertha of Hereford (born c. 1130), heiress
  • Bertha of Holland (c. 1055–1093), queen of France
  • Bertha of Putelendorf (died 1190), Saxon noble
  • Bertha of Savoy (1051-1087)
  • Bertha of Sulzbach (1110-1159), Byzantine empress
  • Bertha of Swabia (c. 907-966), queen of Burgundy
  • Bertha of Val d'Or (died c. 690), a Christian saint
  • Bertha Benz (1849-1944), wife of inventor Karl Benz
  • Bertha Southey Brammall (1878-1957), Australian writer
  • Bertha Brainard (1890-1946), pioneering television executive
  • Bertha Coombs (born 1961), reporter
  • Bertha Díaz (born 1936), Cuban track and field athlete
  • Bertha "Chippie" Hill (1905–1950), American blues and vaudeville singer and dancer
  • Bertha von Hillern (born 1857), American athlete and painter
  • Bertha Kalich (1874-1939), Jewish actress
  • Bertha Krupp (1886-1957), sole proprietor of the Krupp industrial empire from 1902 to 1943
  • Bertha Knight Landes (1868-1943), first female mayor of a major American city (Seattle, Washington)
  • Bertha Lewis (1887–1931), English opera singer and actress
  • Bertha Mahony (1882–1969), publisher of children's literature
  • Bertha Palmer (1849–1918), American businesswoman, socialite, and philanthropist
  • Bertha Pappenheim (1859-1936), Austrian-Jewish feminist and social pioneer
  • Bertha Lee Pate (died 1975), American blues vocalist
  • Bertha Ronge (1818-1863), Anglo-German kindergarten activist
  • Bertha Runkle (1879-1958), American novelist and playwright
  • Bertha Sánchez (born 1978), Colombian long-distance runner
  • Bertha von Suttner (1843-1914), Austrian novelist and pacifist
  • Bertha Tammelin, Swedish musician, composer and singer
  • Bertha Teague (1906-1991), Hall of Fame basketball coach
  • Bertha Townsend (1869-1909), American tennis player
  • Bertha Valerius (1824-1895), Swedish photographer
  • Bertha Wilson (1923-2007), first female Puisne Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada
  • Bertha Zück (1797-1868), German-Swedish royal treasurer
Bertha (disambiguation)

Bertha is a female given name.

It can also refer to:

Bertha (Rorem)

Bertha is an opera in one act, with music by Ned Rorem to an English libretto by Kenneth Koch, an original work parodying Shakespeare's histories. Rorem wrote the work originally at the request of the Metropolitan Opera (Met) Studio in the 1960s, intended as an opera for children. However, the Met studio rejected the work. The work was premiered at Alice Tully Hall in New York City on November 25, 1973 with Beverly Wolff in the title role.

Bertha is still sporadically performed. It received a performance by The Golden Fleece in New York City in 1981. In the UK, the New World Opera Company produced the work in London in February 2001.

Bertha (TV series)

Bertha is a British stop motion-animated children's television series about a factory machine of that name, comprising 13 episodes that aired from 1985 to 1986. Other major characters in the series were Mr Willmake (factory owner), Mr Sprott (Bertha's chief designer) and Tracy (Mr Sprott's young assistant). All the characters were designed by Ivor Wood, and the series was produced by his company, Woodland Animations. It was broadcast on BBC Television.

A series of six storybooks based on Bertha was published by André Deutsch at the same time as the series was broadcast. They were adapted by Eric Charles and illustrated by Steve Augarde, who was also responsible for the artwork and music in the children's series Bump.

Bertha (Perth)

Bertha was a Roman fortress north of the site of modern Perth, in Scotland at the confluence of the rivers Almond and Tay. It is half a mile east of the modern farm of "Berthapark".

One source contradicts the view that Perth was a corruption of the fort's name. According to this source, the name "Bertha" was originally used by medieval Scots historians, such as John of Fordun and Walter Bower, who did not know the original name for the site and who adapted a version of "Perth" - Berth". The Romans probably called the site "Tamia", after a native name for the River Tay. In early medieval times the abandoned site was still used for ceremonial purposes by Pictish and Gaelic kings, when it was called "Rathinveramon".

The fort was a supply base built around AD83 to support the occasional Roman expeditions into north-east Scotland. At that time, it was at the highest navigable point on the Tay. It's thought possible that the site was re-used on three occasions up to the 3rd century

The site was identified in the 18th century. It has been damaged by river erosion and by ploughing, but excavations in 1973 revealed a ditch wide and deep. Immediately within the ditch was a wide berm over wide and this was backed by a turf rampart averaging about wide.

Bertha (tunnel boring machine)

Bertha, also known as Big Bertha, is a tunnel boring machine built specifically for the Washington State Department of Transportation's (WSDOT) Alaskan Way Viaduct replacement tunnel project in Seattle. It was made by Hitachi Zosen Sakai Works in Osaka, Japan, and the machine's assembly was completed in Seattle in June 2013. Tunnel boring began on July 30, 2013, with the machine originally scheduled to complete the tunnel in December 2015.

On December 6, 2013, work was halted approximately into the planned route because of an unexpected impediment. Investigations a month later revealed that the machine had damaged several of its cutting blades after encountering a steel pipe that was used to measure groundwater in 2002 around the Alaskan Way Viaduct. Over the next two years, a recovery pit was dug from the surface in order to access and lift the machine's cutterhead for repair and partial replacement in 2015.

Bertha resumed tunnel boring on December 22, 2015, but was stopped in early January 2016 after a tethered barge in Elliott Bay damaged nearby piers and a sinkhole opened near the project site. Governor Jay Inslee halted all work on the tunnel on January 14, 2016, citing concern over public safety after the sinkhole incident. Digging resumed on February 23, but was halted again for maintenance and inspections late in March. Bertha resumed tunneling on Friday, April 29, 2016, digging under the Alaskan Way Viaduct.

In December 2015, WSDOT estimated that the tunnel would be completed and open to traffic in early 2018. The estimate was revised in July 2016 to open in early 2019; an estimated $223 million in cost overruns stem from the two-year delay of the machine.

Bertha has excavated of the planned tunnel route.

Usage examples of "bertha".

Querida thought as Bertha was pushed aside and Querida found herself lying on the ground being punched by hard trotters galloping across her.

Berthas had sounded, the exaggerated WHUMP of incendiary tonnage, way larger than life.

And Bertha Brachiosaur is munching away in Ostrom Meadow, benignly supervising the whole scene.

Bertha derived her female descent from the Carlovingian line, every step was polluted with illegitimacy or vice.

Bertha exclaimed in dismay and set the roast chicken she was bringing in from the kitchen down on the table.

If the ambassadors were instructed by any false brethren in the Byzantine history, they might produce three memorable examples of the violation of this imaginary law: the marriage of Leo, or rather of his father Constantine the Fourth, with the daughter of the king of the Chozars, the nuptials of the granddaughter of Romanus with a Bulgarian prince, and the union of Bertha of France or Italy with young Romanus, the son of Constantine Porphyrogenitus himself.

She did not raise her voice shrewishly, not once, even when Bertha belched loudly in the hall.

William apparently was fascinated with hatchets and may have had a connection to the Bertha Manchester murder.

Bertha hollered, bending over to peer into her oven at a rib roast and some baked potatoes.

Bertha, Rudabaugh, and Orson to cart these bodies into one of the buildings.

Hickok, Geronimo, Bertha, Lynx, Rudabaugh, and Orson stood near the SEAL, their respective weapons at the ready.

The front end suddenly swerved toward the sidewalk, and Sundance leaped, his left arm catching Bertha around the waist.

SEAL until well after dark, with Sundance pacing back and forth the whole while, and Bertha had never appeared.

Pings locked away in the trunk of my Beemer, right along with that Big Bertha you won the Colonial with.

Although Bertha knew where the Bobcat leader and the other boy were hiding, neither betrayed their position, neither appeared in her field of view.