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6. Of these heights, Lugnaquilla is over 3000 feet above the sea level. There are several small lakes of much beauty. The Liffey rises among the Wicklow Hills; the Slaney rises from the northern slope of Lugnaquilla. The Avonmore or Avoca flows eastward to the sea, winding through that loveliest of valleys to which it gives its
7. The district was inhabited by two Irish septs or clans of the O'Byrnes and the O'Tooles, who kept up a warfare against the English settlers till the time of James I., and the name of O'Byrne is still to be met with in all parts of the county.
8. Let us enter the county from the north. Crossing the bridge over the little stream dividing it from the county of Dublin, we find ourselves in the town of Bray, the Irish Brighton. Bray Head is a bold promontory, with wooded sides and steep face towards the sea; from its summit a fine view is seen of the beautiful coast as far as Kingstown, with Howth Head in the distance.
9. The granite hill-barrier between Wicklow and Dublin has been rent as by some sudden shock of nature, to form an easy highway from one county to the other. This is the Scalp, and is as fine a mountain pass for its extent as one can see. Midway in the pass is the pretty Englishlike village of Enniskerry, near which is the seat of the Earl of Powerscourt, a fine mansion overlooking the river Dargle. The house is built of granite, on the site of the ancient castle of the O'Tooles, and for beauty of its lands, with their woods, rivers, mountains, glens, valleys, dales, and ravines, may be ranked among the finest of all Irish residences.
10. Leaving many lakes and glens, let us go to the farfamed Glendalough, the City of the Lakes. In a dark valley surrounded by mountains, open only to the east by a narrow road, is the site of the Seven Churches. It is a scene grand and almost awful in its silent, deathlike gloom—a city strewn with the ruins of venerable religious houses. Scarcely a tree is to be seen. Yet here St. Kevin founded an abbey, which grew into a city, a school for learning, a college for religion, a
refuge for the poor, the sick, and the oppressed. Here were buried the royal family of the O'Tooles, some of whose tombstones still remain. The round tower is 110 feet high, and save that its conical top is gone, it is in good preservation.
11. Following the windings of the Avonmore, we reach the Vale of Clara, and onward to the far-famed Vale of Avoca. The river glides on, between hills on either side, rich with verdure and clothed with forest trees, till it reaches the copper mines of Cronbane. The trade has now fallen off, both for copper and sulphur, but still the scarred mountain-sides contrast in a pleasing manner with the woodland scenes around.
LESSON 37.-DIVISIONS AND TOWNS.-I.
1. The country is divided into four Provinces-Leinster, occupying the east and south-east; Ulster, the north and north-east; Connaught (Con-nät), the west; and Munster the south-west. The provinces agree nearly with the four kingdoms which existed before Ireland was united with England. These provinces are divided into counties, thirty-two in all, most of them being districts round the central town from which they are named.
2. The county of Meath was anciently a separate kingdom, afterwards united to Leinster; King's County and Queen's County (also in Leinster) were named from Queen Mary and her Spanish husband, Philip, whose names are retained in Philipstown and Maryborough.
3. Since Ireland is almost entirely agricultural, the people are not gathered into large towns except at the ports. There are but half a dozen large towns—Dublin, Belfast, Cork, Limerick, Londonderry, and Waterford and no inland town has as many as 20,000 inhabitants.
4. The province of Leinster (Lěn'-ster) consists of twelve counties, namely Dublin, Wicklow, Wexford, Kilkenny, Carlow, Kildare, Queen's County, King's County, Meath, Westmeath, Louth, Longford. It contains a larger proportion of fertile land than any other province. Wicklow yields small quantities of lead, silver, and iron-ore; there are collieries in Kilkenny, Carlow, and Queen's County; black marble is obtained from Kilkenny.
5. The small county of Dublin contains the city of Dublin, which is the metropolis of Ireland, being the residence of the lord-lieutenant, and the seat of the supreme courts.
It also contains the ancient University of Trinity College, and a newly-founded Royal Irish University. The city is built on both banks of the Liffey near its mouth; the river is lined with quays, and the port has a large passenger and import trade. There are manufactures of poplins (a mixed woollen and silk fabric), leather, starch, sugar, snuff, porter, and spirits. The population is 250,000.
6. The principal public buildings are the Castle, which is the official residence of the lord-lieutenant, the Four Courts (of law), the Bank of Ireland (formerly the Irish Parliament House), Trinity College, the cathedrals Protestant and Roman Catholic, General Post-office, and the Custom House. Phoenix Park, to the west of the city, contains the vice-regal lodge, zoological gardens, and 1300 acres of ground beautifully laid out, and open to the public.
7. Kingstown,on Dublin Bay, is a thriving seaport chiefly for passenger traffic. It has a large harbour formed by piers projecting into the Irish Sea. Balbriggan (Balbrig'-gan), near the north end of the county, is noted for hosiery.
8. The mountainous county of Wicklow contains some fine scenery, more particularly that of the Vale of Avoca. Wicklow is a small seaport town, with a little trade and some fishing. Wexford, in the county of the same name, stands near the mouth of the Slaney, and has a fine harbour, which unfortunately has a bar at its mouth.
9. Kilkenny contains the town of Kilkenny, on the Nore, the largest inland town of the province, with 15,000 inhabitants, a cathedral, and several educational institutions.
10. Kildare is said to be the moistest inland county in Ireland. The Curragh (Cur'-ra) or common of Kildare has a permanent military camp similar to that of Alder
At Maynooth is a college for the education of Roman Catholic priests.
11. Mullingar, the county town of Westmeath, has a considerable trade and large fairs. Athlone (Ath-lone') on the Shannon is a great military centre, with barracks for 1500 men, and has also an important trade.
12. Dundalk, the county town of Louth, and Drogheda (Dro'-ke-da), are both flourishing towns with a considerable shipping trade and some manufactures. The latter is situated on the Boyne near its mouth; the battle of the Boyne was fought in the neighbourhood.
1. The steam packet left Holyhead at 6 p.m., and reached Kingstown at 11 p.m., so that I found myself in the metropolis of Ireland without being bothered with the old-fashioned comparison between the beauty of its bay and that of Naples.
2. The next morning was beautifully fine, and I ventured forth on horseback. All of a sudden I came to a fine
open space, in the centre of which, with a broad road on each side, was a deep channel, apparently bisecting the city. The dark-coloured peat-water rushing within announced to me it was the Liffey, retained within its limits by handsome walls of hewn stone, on which highwater mark was very plainly denoted by a deep black stain, perforated every here and there, at about four feet from the bottom, with square black drainage-holes.
3. Across this river there are a series of bridges, and just beyond the most eastern of these arched communi