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Summary Article: Wicklow
from The Hutchinson Unabridged Encyclopedia with Atlas and Weather Guide

County of the Republic of Ireland, in the province of Leinster; county town Wicklow; area 2,030 sq km/784 sq mi; population (2002) 114,700. It includes the Wicklow Mountains, the rivers Slaney, Avoca, Vartry, and Liffey, and the coastal resort of Bray. Other towns include Arklow, Greystones, and Baltinglass. The village of Shillelagh gave its name to rough cudgels of oak or blackthorn made there. Agriculture is important; there is livestock rearing (in particular a special breed of mountain sheep), and dairy farming. Wheat and oats are grown, and seed potatoes and bulbs are produced.

Physical Wicklow is bounded to the north by County Dublin, to the south by Wexford, to the east by St George's Channel, and to the west by Carlow and Kildare. The Wicklow Mountains run through the centre from north to south, the highest points being Mount Lugnaquilla (926 m/3,038 ft), the second-highest mountain in Ireland, Mount Kippure (754 m/2,474 ft), Djouce Mountain (727 m/2,385 ft), and Duff Hill (723 m/2,372 ft). The rivers Liffey and Slaney rise there; the county's other principal rivers are the Avonmore, the Dargle, and the Vartry. The two main harbours are at Arklow and Wicklow. Lakes include Loughs Bray, Dan, and the Upper and Lower loughs at Glendalough. There are artificial lakes at Roundwood, which is the Dublin reservoir, and at Pollaphuca, which forms part of the Blessington hydroelectric scheme.

Features The county is known for its scenery; there are gorges and valleys, notable among which are Glenmalure (11 km/7 mi), the Vale of Avoca, and the Croghan Valley; the coast has steep cliffs and sandy beaches. Glendalough is the site of a large and well-preserved 7th-century monastery, and a place of pilgrimage; near the village of Glencree is the Dargle ravine, which has a 91 m/300 ft-high waterfall. There are many other ecclesiastical remains and castles in the county.

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