County Armagh

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County Armagh
Contae Ard Mhacha  (Irish)
Coontie Airmagh/Coontie Armagh  (Scots)
Coat of arms of County Armagh
Coat of arms
Location of County Armagh
Country United Kingdom
Region Northern Ireland
Province Ulster
County town Armagh
Area
 • Total 512 sq mi (1,326 km2)
Area rank 27th
Population (2011) 174,792
 • Rank 11th[1]
Contae Ard Mhacha is the Irish name; Coontie Armagh[2] and Coontie Airmagh[3] are Ulster Scots spellings.

County Armagh is one of six counties that together make up Northern Ireland. It is also one of the 32 counties of Ireland. County Armagh lies in the north-east of the island of Ireland. The county is 1,326 km²[4] big. About 174,792 people live there.

The county is named after the town Armagh. The name "Armagh" derives from the Irish word Ard meaning "high place" and Macha. In stories, Macha is a goddess of Ireland. Armagh was the main town for the historic Ulaid kings of Ulster.

Landscape[change | change source]

The landscape has hills in the south. Slieve Gullion is the highest mountain. It goes down from there and becomes flatter with small hills called drumlins in the middle and the west. It is fairly flat in the north, and is at sea level at Lough Neagh. There are a few small islands in the lake.

History[change | change source]

Ancient Armagh was the territory of the Ulaid people before the year 400. The Red Branch ruled the county. Their capital was a fort called Emain Macha near Armagh. The Red Branch play an important role in the stories in the Ulster Cycle. They are also part of the story the "Cattle Raid of Cooley".

Armagh was the Roman Catholic home of Saint Patrick.

The Troubles[change | change source]

South Armagh is mostly nationalist. This means that there is a lot of support for the IRA there.

Main towns[change | change source]

Baronies[change | change source]

Baronies are old divisions of Ireland. Below is a list of the baronies in County Armagh.

The Baronies of County Armagh (1900)

Transport[change | change source]

The M1 near Lurgan

Two major highways run through County Armagh. The M1 links Belfast to Dungannon in the north of the county. The A1/N1 from Belfast to Dublin runs in the far south east. Armagh has lots of local roads connecting the towns and villages.

There used to be many railways in County Armagh, but at the moment there are only a few stations left.

Ulsterbus is the bus company that runs most public transport in the county. It includes buses from most towns to Belfast. Railway companies Northern Ireland Railways and Iarnród Éireann together run the Enterprise service. It has trains that go to Dublin (about an hour) and Belfast (about forty minutes) a few times daily. There are many more Northern Ireland Railways trains into Belfast and Bangor.

Inland waterways[change | change source]

The Ulster Canal and the Newry Canal run through County Armagh. The canals are not fully open for boats to use.

People associated with County Armagh[change | change source]

Places of interest[change | change source]

References[change | change source]

  1. Census figures are no longer released detailing returns for Counties but rather Parliamentary Constituency, Local Government District, Electoral Ward and Output Area. This figure is based on a tally of all persons resident in the wards comprising County Armagh on 29 April 2001, i.e. all electoral wards of the Newry & Armagh Parliamentary Constituency (minus St. Mary's, St. Patrick's and Windsor Hill from County Down) combined with the 17 wards in the Upper Bann Parliamentary Constituency from County Armagh (i.e. Derrytrasna, Birches, Bleary, Drumgask, Taghnevan, Court, Annagh, Brownstown, Ballybay, Ballyoran, Corcrain, Edenderry, Killycomain, Kernan, Drumgor, Mourneview, Church, Knocknashane, Parklane, Woodville, Drumnamoe, and Tavanagh). "Area Profiles". Northern Ireland Neighbourhood Information Service. Retrieved 8 August 2008. 
  2. Tourism Ireland: 2007 Yearly Report in Ulster Scots Archived 17 July 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  3. North-South Ministerial Council: 2006 Annual Report in Ulster Scots Archived 27 February 2013 at the Wayback Machine.
  4. [1] County Armagh, Land Area

Other websites[change | change source]

Coordinates: 54°21′00″N 6°39′17″W / 54.3499°N 6.6546°W / 54.3499; -6.6546