The Clava cairn is a type of Bronze Age circular chamber tomb cairn, named after the group of three cairns at Balnuaran of Clava, to the east of Inverness in Scotland. There are about 50 cairns of this type in an area round about Inverness, they fall into two sub-types, one consisting of a corbelled passage grave with a single burial chamber linked to the entrance by a short passage and covered with a cairn of stones, with the entrances oriented south west towards midwinter sunset. In the other sub-type an annular ring cairn encloses an unroofed area with no formal means of access from the outside. In both sub-types a stone circle surrounds the whole tomb and a kerb runs around the cairn; the heights of the standing stones vary in height so that the tallest fringe the entrance and the shortest are directly opposite it. Where Clava-type tombs have still contained burial remains, only one or two bodies appear to have been buried in each, the lack of access to the second sub-type suggests that there was no intention of re-visiting the dead or communally adding future burials as had been the case with Neolithic cairn tombs.
At Balnuaran of Clava itself there is a group of three Bronze Age cairns which lie close together in a line running north east to south west. The tombs at either end are of the passage grave sub-type; the central cairn is of the ring cairn sub-type, uniquely has stone paths or causeways forming "rays" radiating out from the platform round the kerbs to three of the standing stones. The cairns incorporate ring mark stones, carved before they were built into the structures; the kerb stones are graded in size and selected for colour, so that the stones are larger and redder to the south west, smaller and whiter to the north east. All these elements seem to have been constructed as one operation and indicate a complex design rather than ad hoc additions; the ring round the northern Balnuaran of Clava cairn was measured and analysed by Professor Alexander Thom. He found that the ring was egg-shaped with a complex geometry of circles and ellipses which could be set out around a central triangle, using sizes which are close to whole multiples of what he called the Megalithic yard.
While the geometry of the shape is accepted, the Megalithic Yard is more controversial. Grid reference NH757445 Scotland Before History - Stuart Piggott, Birlinn Limited, ISBN 0-85224-348-0 Scotland's Hidden History - Ian Armit, Tempus 1998, ISBN 0-7486-6067-4 Sun and Standing Stones - John Edwin Wood, Oxford University Press 1978, ISBN 0-19-285089-X
A stone circle is a circular alignment of standing stones. They are found across Northern Europe and Great Britain and date from the Late Neolithic and Early Bronze Age eras, with most concentrations appearing from 3000 BC; the best known examples include those at the henge monument at Avebury, the Rollright Stones and elements within the ring of standing stones at Stonehenge. Ancient stone circles appear throughout Europe with many appearing in the Pyrenees, on the Causse de Blandas in southern France in the Cevennes, in the Alps, Bulgaria. Stone circles are grouped in terms of the shape and size of the stones, the span of their radius and their population within the local area. Although many theories have been advance to explain their use around providing a setting for ceremony or ritual, there is no consensus among archaeologists as to their intended function, their construction involved considerable communal effort, including specialist tasks such as planning, transportation, laying the foundation trenches, final construction.
There is growing evidence that megalithic constructions began as early as 5000 BCE in northwestern France, that the custom and techniques spread via sea routes throughout Europe and the Mediterranean region from there. The Carnac Stones in France are estimated to have been built around 4500 BCE and many of the formations include megalithic stone circles; the earliest stone circles in England were erected 2500-3000 BCE during the Middle Neolithic. Around that time stone circles began to appear in coastal and lowland areas towards the north of the United Kingdom; the Langdale axe industry in the Lake District appears to have been an important early centre for circle building because of its economic power. Many had set stones similar to the earth banks of henges, others were made from unfounded boulders rather than standing stones. Recent research shows that two oldest stone circles in Britain were constructed to align with solar and lunar positions; some sites do not contain evidence of human dwelling.
This suggests. The variety of the stones excludes the possibility that they had astronomical observation purposes of any precision. Sometimes a stone circle is found in association with a burial pit or burial chamber, but the great majority of these monuments have no such association. Recumbent stone circles are a variation containing a single large stone placed on its side; the stones are ordered by height, with the tallest being the portals, with reducing heights around each side of the circle, down to the recumbent stone, the lowest. The type is found throughout the British Isles and Brittany, with 71 examples in Scotland, at least 20 in south west Ireland, including Drombeg stone circle near Rosscarbery, Co. Cork. Scottish recumbent circles are flanked by the two largest of the standing stones on either side; these are known as'flankers'. The stones are graded in height with the lowest stones being diametrically opposite to the tall flankers, it is common for the circle to contain a ring cairn and cremation remains.
Irish recumbent stone circles are found in Kerry. There are no tall flanking stones on either side of the recumbent stone. Instead, there are two tall stones at the side of the circle opposite the recumbent stone; these are known as ` portals'. The portals are turned so that their flat sides face each other, rather than facing into the centre of the circle. A concentric stone circle is a type of prehistoric monument consisting of a circular or oval arrangement of two or more stone circles set within one another, they were in use from the late Neolithic to the end of the early Bronze Age, are found in England and Scotland. Cobble pavements have been found in the centre of many examples. Connected features at some sites include central mounds, outlying standing stones, avenues or circular banks on which the stones are set. Alternatively, they may be replicas of earlier timber circles rebuilt in stone the examples in Wessex. A funerary purpose is thought especially by Burl who sees sites in Cumbria as being analogous to the kerbs that surround some chamber tombs.
Burials have been found at all excavated concentric stone circles: both inhumations and cremations, with the burnt remains either within an urn or placed directly in the earth. Megalithic monuments are found in great number on the European Atlantic fringe and in the British Isles. Experts disagree as to whether the construction of megaliths in England was independently developed or imported from mainland Europe. A 2019 comprehensive radiocarbon dating study of Megalithic structures across Europe and the British Isles concluded that megalithic construction techniques were spread over sea routes starting from northwestern France. There are 1,300 stone circles in Britain and Ireland; the French archaeologist Jean-Pierre Mohen in his book Le Monde des Megalithes has written that British Isles megalithism are "outstanding in the abundance of standing stones, the variety of circular architectural complexes of which they formed a part... strikingly original, they have no equivalent elsewhere in Europe – supporting the argument that the builders were independent."
Some theories suggest that invaders from Brittany may have been responsible for constructing StonehengeAlthough distributed across the island, the two main concentrations of stone circles in Ireland are in the Cork/Kerry area and in mid-Ulster. The latter consist of larger amount of small stones 03.m high, are found in upland areas, o
Hector Boece, known in Latin as Hector Boecius or Boethius, was a Scottish philosopher and historian, the first Principal of King's College in Aberdeen, a predecessor of the University of Aberdeen. He was born in Dundee where he attended school and was educated at the nearby University of St Andrews, he left to study at the University of Paris where he met Erasmus, with whom he became close friends while they were both students at the austere Collège de Montaigu, to whose reforming Master, Jan Standonck, Boece became Secretary. By 1497 he had become a professor of philosophy at Collège de Montaigu. In 1500, he was induced to leave Paris for Aberdeen by a generously financed offer to become the first principal of the newly established University of Aberdeen, created at the behest of James IV by William Elphinstone, Bishop of Aberdeen under the authority of a Papal bull issued by Pope Alexander VI. From onwards, he worked with Elphinstone, to set up the new university and by 1505, regular lectures were taking place at King's College.
The university structure was modelled of Orléans. As intended, Boece was installed as the first principal of the university and gave lectures on medicine and on divinity. At the end of 1534, Boece became Rector of Fyvie, he died in Aberdeen two years at the age of 71. Boece published two books, one of biography and one of history. In 1522 he published the Vitae Episcoporum Murthlacensium et Aberdonensium and in 1527 the Historia Gentis Scotorum to the accession of James III of Scotland; the former was the basis of a poem in Scots by Alexander Gardyne. Reception of the HistoriaThe Historia is the work for which Boece is remembered, as the second scholarly history of the Scots to be written, it was written in a flowing and pleasing style, became popular, led to ecclesiastical preferment and royal favour. By modern standards it is overly patriotic, has many inaccuracies; the historical account of Macbeth of Scotland, in particular, flattered the antecedents of Boece's patron King James IV of Scotland, maligned the real Macbeth.
The work was well received at the time, both in Europe and in Scotland, after its translation from Latin into French and in 1536 from Latin into Scots by John Bellenden. There are some glimpses in the Historia of contemporary Scotland, such as the statement that the Eurasian beaver, soon to become extinct in Scotland, was still common around Loch Ness. Continuations of the Historia and its influenceBoece's Historia as published terminated in 1438. In the early 1530s the scholar Giovanni Ferrerio, engaged by Robert Reid of Kinloss Abbey, wrote a continuation of Boece's history, extending it another 50 years, to the end of the reign of James III. John Lesley in his De Origine, Moribus, et Rebus Gestis Scotorum, Robert Lindsay of Pitscottie, provided further continuations; the metrical translation into Scots by William Stewart, not published until the nineteenth century provided some expansion. The chronicler Polydore Vergil made some use of Boece for his 1534 Historia Anglica. David Chalmers of Ormond in his Histoire abbregée wrote about the French and Scottish monarchies, relying on Boece for the Scottish account.
The Historia was translated into English for Raphael Holinshed's Chronicles of England and Ireland. The account in Holinshed's Chronicle was used by William Shakespeare as the basis of his play Macbeth. George Buchanan made heavy use of Boece in his Rerum Scoticarum Historia. Boece's sourcesBoece's claimed; the works of John Fordun and Walter Bower defined the tradition which he attempted to make seamless, filling the gaps in the chronicle, applying the approach common to humanists of his period. The works of Tacitus had been rediscovered, in the 14th century, contained material relevant to British history. There was a group of sources that remain debated: material from Elphinstone, the authors Veremundus, Cornelius Hibernicus, John Campbell. No written record of these works survives. Sharp criticism of the sourcing of Boece's history was voiced in the sixteenth century by Humphrey Lhuyd and John Twyne. In the eighteenth century the historical content of the earlier parts of work was dismantled by Thomas Innes.
Boece shared in the credulity of his age. The charge of inventing his authorities brought against Boece, has been the subject of recent scholarship. One example of Boece being cleared of the charge of fabricating his work concerns the Battle of Luncarty Luncarty Clan Hay, he was suspected by the Scottish historian John Hill Burton of inventing that battle but, Walter Bower writing in his Scotichronicon around 1440, some 87 years before Boece first published his Scotorum Historia, refers to the battle briefly. The "John Campbell" is tentatively identified as Boece's contemporary John Campbell of Lundie. "Veremundus", it is argued, may be a Richard Vairement of the 13th century. Evonium List of legendary kings of Scotland Sleuth hound Robert. "Boece, Hector". A Biographical Dictionary of Eminent Scotsmen. 1. Glasgow: Blackie and Son. Pp. 262–68 – via Wikisource. Cousin, John William. "Boece
Scotland is a country, part of the United Kingdom. Sharing a border with England to the southeast, Scotland is otherwise surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean to the north and west, by the North Sea to the northeast and by the Irish Sea to the south. In addition to the mainland, situated on the northern third of the island of Great Britain, Scotland has over 790 islands, including the Northern Isles and the Hebrides; the Kingdom of Scotland emerged as an independent sovereign state in the Early Middle Ages and continued to exist until 1707. By inheritance in 1603, James VI, King of Scots, became King of England and King of Ireland, thus forming a personal union of the three kingdoms. Scotland subsequently entered into a political union with the Kingdom of England on 1 May 1707 to create the new Kingdom of Great Britain; the union created a new Parliament of Great Britain, which succeeded both the Parliament of Scotland and the Parliament of England. In 1801, the Kingdom of Great Britain and Kingdom of Ireland enacted a political union to create a United Kingdom.
The majority of Ireland subsequently seceded from the UK in 1922. Within Scotland, the monarchy of the United Kingdom has continued to use a variety of styles and other royal symbols of statehood specific to the pre-union Kingdom of Scotland; the legal system within Scotland has remained separate from those of England and Wales and Northern Ireland. The continued existence of legal, educational and other institutions distinct from those in the remainder of the UK have all contributed to the continuation of Scottish culture and national identity since the 1707 union with England; the Scottish Parliament, a unicameral legislature comprising 129 members, was established in 1999 and has authority over those areas of domestic policy which have been devolved by the United Kingdom Parliament. The head of the Scottish Government, the executive of the devolved legislature, is the First Minister of Scotland. Scotland is represented in the UK House of Commons by 59 MPs and in the European Parliament by 6 MEPs.
Scotland is a member of the British–Irish Council, sends five members of the Scottish Parliament to the British–Irish Parliamentary Assembly. Scotland is divided into councils. Glasgow City is the largest subdivision in Scotland in terms of population, with Highland being the largest in terms of area. "Scotland" comes from the Latin name for the Gaels. From the ninth century, the meaning of Scotia shifted to designate Gaelic Scotland and by the eleventh century the name was being used to refer to the core territory of the Kingdom of Alba in what is now east-central Scotland; the use of the words Scots and Scotland to encompass most of what is now Scotland became common in the Late Middle Ages, as the Kingdom of Alba expanded and came to encompass various peoples of diverse origins. Repeated glaciations, which covered the entire land mass of modern Scotland, destroyed any traces of human habitation that may have existed before the Mesolithic period, it is believed the first post-glacial groups of hunter-gatherers arrived in Scotland around 12,800 years ago, as the ice sheet retreated after the last glaciation.
At the time, Scotland was covered in forests, had more bog-land, the main form of transport was by water. These settlers began building the first known permanent houses on Scottish soil around 9,500 years ago, the first villages around 6,000 years ago; the well-preserved village of Skara Brae on the mainland of Orkney dates from this period. Neolithic habitation and ritual sites are common and well preserved in the Northern Isles and Western Isles, where a lack of trees led to most structures being built of local stone. Evidence of sophisticated pre-Christian belief systems is demonstrated by sites such as the Callanish Stones on Lewis and the Maes Howe on Orkney, which were built in the third millennium BCE; the first written reference to Scotland was in 320 BC by Greek sailor Pytheas, who called the northern tip of Britain "Orcas", the source of the name of the Orkney islands. During the first millennium BCE, the society changed to a chiefdom model, as consolidation of settlement led to the concentration of wealth and underground stores of surplus food.
The first Roman incursion into Scotland occurred in 79 AD. After the Roman victory, Roman forts were set along the Gask Ridge close to the Highland line, but by three years after the battle, the Roman armies had withdrawn to the Southern Uplands; the Romans erected Hadrian's Wall in northern England and the Limes Britannicus became the northern border of the Roman Empire. The Roman influence on the southern part of the country was considerable, they introduced Christianity to Scotland. Beginning in the sixth century, the area, now Scotland was divided into three areas: Pictland, a patchwork of small lordships in central Scotland; these societies were based on the family unit and had sharp divisions in wealth, although the vast majority were poor and worked full-time in subsistence agriculture. The Picts kept slaves through the ninth century. Gaelic influence over Pictland and Northumbria was facilitated by the large number of Gaelic-speaking clerics working as missionaries. Operating in the sixth ce
Inverness is a city in the Scottish Highlands. It is the administrative centre for The Highland Council and is regarded as the capital of the Highlands. Inverness lies near two important battle sites: the 11th-century battle of Blàr nam Fèinne against Norway which took place on the Aird and the 18th century Battle of Culloden which took place on Culloden Moor, it is the northernmost city in the United Kingdom and lies within the Great Glen at its north-eastern extremity where the River Ness enters the Moray Firth. At the latest, a settlement was established by the 6th century with the first royal charter being granted by Dabíd mac Maíl Choluim in the 12th century; the Gaelic king Mac Bethad Mac Findláich whose 11th-century killing of King Duncan was immortalised in Shakespeare's fictionalized play Macbeth, held a castle within the city where he ruled as Mormaer of Moray and Ross. The population of Inverness grew from 40,969 in 2001 to 46,869 in 2012; the Greater Inverness area, including Culloden and Westhill, had a population of 59,969 in 2012.
In 2018, it had a population of 69,989. Inverness is one of Europe's fastest growing cities, with a quarter of the Highland population living in or around it, is ranked fifth out of 189 British cities for its quality of life, the highest of any Scottish city. In the recent past, Inverness has experienced rapid economic growth: between 1998 and 2008, Inverness and the rest of the central Highlands showed the largest growth of average economic productivity per person in Scotland and the second greatest growth in the United Kingdom as a whole, with an increase of 86%. Inverness is twinned with one German city and two French towns, La Baule and Saint-Valery-en-Caux. Inverness College is the main campus for the University of the Islands. With around 8,500 students, Inverness College hosts around a quarter of all the University of the Highlands and Islands' students, 30% of those studying to degree level. In 2014, a survey by a property website described Inverness as the happiest place in Scotland and the second happiest in the UK.
Inverness was again found to be the happiest place in Scotland by a new study conducted in 2015. Inverness was one of the chief strongholds of the Picts, in CE 565 was visited by St Columba with the intention of converting the Pictish king Brude, supposed to have resided in the vitrified fort on Craig Phadrig, on the western edge of the city. A 93 oz silver chain dating to 500–800 was found just to the south of Torvean in 1983. A church or a monk's cell is thought to have been established by early Celtic monks on St Michael's Mount, a mound close to the river, now the site of the Old High Church and graveyard; the castle is said to have been built by Máel Coluim III of Scotland, after he had razed to the ground the castle in which Mac Bethad mac Findláich had, according to much tradition, murdered Máel Coluim's father Donnchad, which stood on a hill around 1 km to the north-east. The strategic location of Inverness has led to many conflicts in the area. Reputedly there was a battle in the early 11th century between King Malcolm and Thorfinn of Norway at Blar Nam Feinne, to the southwest of the city.
Inverness had four traditional fairs, including Legavrik or "Leth-Gheamhradh", meaning midwinter, Faoilleach. William the Lion granted Inverness four charters, by one. Of the Dominican friary founded by Alexander III in 1233, only one pillar and a worn knight's effigy survive in a secluded graveyard near the town centre. Medieval Inverness suffered regular raids from the Western Isles by the MacDonald Lords of the Isles in the 15th century. In 1187 one Domhnall Bán led islanders in a battle at Torvean against men from Inverness Castle led by the governor's son, Donnchadh Mac An Toisich. Both leaders were killed in the battle, Donald Ban is said to have been buried in a large cairn near the river, close to where the silver chain was found. Local tradition says that the citizens fought off the Clan Donald in 1340 at the Battle of Blairnacoi on Drumderfit Hill, north of Inverness across the Beauly Firth. On his way to the Battle of Harlaw in 1411, Donald of Islay harried the city, sixteen years James I held a parliament in the castle to which the northern chieftains were summoned, of whom three were arrested for defying the king's command.
Clan Munro defeated Clan Mackintosh in 1454 at the Battle of Clachnaharry just west of the city. Clan Donald and their allies stormed the castle during the Raid on Ross in 1491. In 1562, during the progress undertaken to suppress Huntly's insurrection, Queen of Scots, was denied admittance into Inverness Castle by the governor, who belonged to the earl's faction, whom she afterwards caused to be hanged; the Clan Munro and Clan Fraser of Lovat took the castle for her. The house in which she lived meanwhile stood in Bridge Street until the 1970s, when it was demolished to make way for the second Bridge Street development. Beyond the northern limits of the town, Oliver Cromwell built a citadel capable of accommodating 1,000 men, but with the exception of a portion of the ramparts it was demolished at the Restoration; the only surviving modern remnant is a clock tower. Inverness played a role in the Jacobite rising of 1689. In early May, it was besieged by a contingent of Jacobites led by MacDonell of Keppoch.
The town was rescued by Viscount Dundee, the overall Jacobite commander, when he arrived with the main Jacobite army, although he required Inverness to profess loyalty to King James VII. In 1715 the Jacobites occupie
Ireland is an island in the North Atlantic. It is separated from Great Britain to its east by the North Channel, the Irish Sea, St George's Channel. Ireland is the second-largest island of the British Isles, the third-largest in Europe, the twentieth-largest on Earth. Politically, Ireland is divided between the Republic of Ireland, which covers five-sixths of the island, Northern Ireland, part of the United Kingdom. In 2011, the population of Ireland was about 6.6 million, ranking it the second-most populous island in Europe after Great Britain. Just under 4.8 million live in the Republic of Ireland and just over 1.8 million live in Northern Ireland. The island's geography comprises low-lying mountains surrounding a central plain, with several navigable rivers extending inland, its lush vegetation is a product of its mild but changeable climate, free of extremes in temperature. Much of Ireland was woodland until the end of the Middle Ages. Today, woodland makes up about 10% of the island, compared with a European average of over 33%, most of it is non-native conifer plantations.
There are twenty-six extant mammal species native to Ireland. The Irish climate is influenced by the Atlantic Ocean and thus moderate, winters are milder than expected for such a northerly area, although summers are cooler than those in continental Europe. Rainfall and cloud cover are abundant; the earliest evidence of human presence in Ireland is dated at 10,500 BC. Gaelic Ireland had emerged by the 1st century AD; the island was Christianised from the 5th century onward. Following the 12th century Norman invasion, England claimed sovereignty. However, English rule did not extend over the whole island until the 16th–17th century Tudor conquest, which led to colonisation by settlers from Britain. In the 1690s, a system of Protestant English rule was designed to materially disadvantage the Catholic majority and Protestant dissenters, was extended during the 18th century. With the Acts of Union in 1801, Ireland became a part of the United Kingdom. A war of independence in the early 20th century was followed by the partition of the island, creating the Irish Free State, which became sovereign over the following decades, Northern Ireland, which remained a part of the United Kingdom.
Northern Ireland saw much civil unrest from the late 1960s until the 1990s. This subsided following a political agreement in 1998. In 1973 the Republic of Ireland joined the European Economic Community while the United Kingdom, Northern Ireland, as part of it, did the same. Irish culture has had a significant influence on other cultures in the field of literature. Alongside mainstream Western culture, a strong indigenous culture exists, as expressed through Gaelic games, Irish music and the Irish language; the island's culture shares many features with that of Great Britain, including the English language, sports such as association football, horse racing, golf. The names Éire derive from Old Irish Eriu; this in turn comes from the Proto-Celtic *Iveriu, the source of Latin Hibernia. Iveriu derives from a root meaning'fat, prosperous'. During the last glacial period, up until about 10,000 BC, most of Ireland was periodically covered in ice. Sea levels were lower and Ireland, like Great Britain, formed part of continental Europe.
By 16,000 BC, rising sea levels due to ice melting caused Ireland to become separated from Great Britain. Around 6000 BC, Great Britain itself became separated from continental Europe; the earliest evidence of human presence in Ireland is dated at 10,500 BC, demonstrated by a butchered bear bone found in a cave in County Clare. It is not until about 8000 BC, that more sustained occupation of the island has been shown, with evidence for Mesolithic communities around the island; these Mesolithic communities lived as hunter-gatherers across the island until about 4000 BC. Some time before 4000 BC, Neolithic settlers arrived introducing cereal cultivars, domesticated animals such as cattle and sheep, large timber building, stone monuments; the earliest evidence for farming in Ireland or Great Britain is from Co.. Kerry, where a flint knife, cattle bones and a sheep's tooth were carbon-dated to c. 4350 BC. Field systems were developed in different parts of Ireland, including at the Céide Fields, preserved beneath a blanket of peat in present-day Tyrawley.
An extensive field system, arguably the oldest in the world, consisted of small divisions separated by dry-stone walls. The fields were farmed for several centuries between 3500 BC and 3000 BC. Wheat and barley were the principal crops; the Bronze Age – defined by the use of metal – began around 2500 BC, with technology changing people's everyday lives during this period through innovations such as the wheel. According to John T. Koch and others, Ireland in the Late Bronze Age was part of a maritime trading-network culture called the Atlantic Bronze Age that included Britain, western France and Iberia, that this is where Celtic languages developed; this contrasts with the traditional view that their origin lies in mainland Europe with the Hallstatt culture. During the Iron Age, a Celtic language and culture emerged in Ireland. How and when the island became Celtic has been debated for close to a century, with the migrations of the Celts being one of the more enduring themes of archaeological and linguistic studies.
The most recent genetic research s
County Cork is a county in Ireland. It is the largest and southernmost county of Ireland, situated in the province of Munster and named after the city of Cork, Ireland's second-largest city; the Cork County Council is the local authority for the county. Its largest market towns are Mallow, Macroom and Skibbereen. In 2016, the county's population was 542,868. Notable Corkonians include Michael Collins, Jack Lynch, Sonia O'Sullivan. Cork borders four other counties; the county contains the Golden Vale pastureland and stretches from Kanturk in the north to Allihies in the south. The south-west region, including West Cork, is one of Ireland's main tourist destinations, known for its rugged coast, megalithic monuments, as the starting point for the Wild Atlantic Way; the county is known as the "Rebel county", a name given to them by King Henry VII of England for its support of a man claiming to be Richard, Duke of York in a futile attempt at a rebellion. The main third-level educator is University College Cork, founded in 1845, with a current undergraduate population around 15,000.
Significant local industry and employers include technology company Dell EMC, the European headquarters of Apple, Dairygold, which own milk-processing factories in Mitchelstown and Mallow. Two local authorities have remits which collectively encompass the geographic area of the county and city of Cork; the county, excluding Cork city, is administered by Cork County Council, while the city is administered separately by Cork City Council. Both city and county are part of the South-West Region. For standardized European statistical purposes, both Cork County Council and Cork City Council rank as first-level local administrative units of the NUTS 3 South-West Region. Thirty-four such LAU 1 entities are in the Republic of Ireland. For elections to Dáil Éireann, the county is divided into five constituencies—Cork East, Cork North-Central, Cork North-West, Cork South-Central and Cork South-West. Together they return 18 deputies to the Dáil; the county is part of the South constituency for the purposes of European elections.
For purposes other than local government, such as the formation of sporting teams, the term "County Cork" is taken to include both city and county. County Cork is located in the province of Munster, bordering Kerry to the west, Limerick to the north, Tipperary to the north-east and Waterford to the east, it is the largest county in Ireland by land area, the largest of Munster's six counties by population and area. At the last census in 2016, Cork city stood at 125,657; the population of the entire county is 542,868 making it the state's second-most populous county and the third-most populous county on the island of Ireland. The remit of Cork County Council includes some suburbs of the city not within the area of Cork City Council. Twenty-four historic baronies are in the county—the most of any county in Ireland. While baronies continue to be defined units, they are no longer used for many administrative purposes, their official status is illustrated by Placenames Orders made since 2003, where official Irish names of baronies are listed.
The county has 253 civil parishes. Townlands are the smallest defined geographical divisions in Ireland, with about 5447 townlands in the county; the county's mountain rose during a period mountain formation some 374-360 million years ago and include the Slieve Miskish and Caha Mountains on the Beara Peninsula, the Ballyhoura Mountains on the border with Limerick and the Shehy Mountains which contain Knockboy, the highest point in Cork. The Shehy Mountains are on the border with Kerry and may be accessed from the area known as Priests Leap, near the village of Coomhola; the Galtee Mountains are located across parts of Tipperary and Cork and are Ireland's highest inland mountain range. The upland areas of the Ballyhoura, Boggeragh and Mullaghareirk Mountain ranges add to the range of habitats found in the county. Important habitats in the uplands include blanket bog, glacial lakes, upland grasslands. Cork has the 13th-highest county peak in Ireland. Three rivers, the Bandon and Lee, their valleys dominate central Cork.
Habitats of the valleys and floodplains include woodlands, marshes and species-rich limestone grasslands. The River Bandon flows through several towns, including Dunmanway to the west of the town of Bandon before draining into Kinsale Harbour on the south coast. Cork's sea loughs include Lough Hyne and Lough Mahon, the county has many small lakes. An area has formed where the River Lee breaks into a network of channels weaving through a series of wooded islands. About 85 hectares of swamp are around Cork's wooded area; the Environmental Protection Agency carried out a survey of surface waters in County Cork between 1995 and 1997, which identified 125 rivers and 32 lakes covered by the regulations. Cork has a flat landscape with many beaches and sea cliffs along its coast; the southwest of Ireland is known for its peninsulas and some in Cork include the Beara Peninsula, Sheep's Head, Mizen Head, Brow Head. Brow Head is the most southerly point of mainland Ireland. There are many islands off the coast in particular, off West Cork.
Carbery's Hundred Isles are the islands around Long Island Roaringwater Bay. Fastnet Rock lies in the Atlantic Ocean 11.3 km south of mainland Ireland, making it the most southerly point of Ireland. Many notable islands lie off Cork, including Bere, Great and Cape Clear. Cork has 1,094 km of coastline, the second-longest coastline of any county after Mayo