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Denbighshire

Denbighshire. A county of north-east Wales created in 1536 at the Act of Union with England. Its core was Perfeddwlad, east of the Conwy river, once the Welsh kingdoms of Rhufoniog and Rhos, together with Dyffryn Clwyd. These, after the Norman conquest, constituted the lordships of Denbigh and Ruthin, and to them were added a series of smaller lordships carved out of the northern lands of the Welsh kingdom of Powys, including St Asaph, Bromfield and Yale, Chirk, and Hope.

Thus constituted, the shire included very varied terrain. At its heart was the vale of Clwyd, but to the east it extended across the Denbigh moors and Mynydd Hiraethog to the Conwy valley. To the south it pushed across the Dee valley to the Berwyn Mountains (Moel Sych, 2,317 feet), whilst eastward it included the Wrexham area to the English border, detaching a section of Flintshire. In 1974 it became part of the county of Clwyd and the former county was divided into three districts—Colwyn, Glyndŵr, and Wrexham Maelor. In 1996 it was reconstituted as a county, but without Wrexham which became a county in its own right.

Denbighshire's economy was based mainly on agriculture and tourism. Its south-eastern extension prior to 1996 covered the southern part of the North Wales Coalfield. Although mining has ceased, the area is characterized by industrial village settlement and there is a legacy from the past in modern engineering and electronic industries.

Denbighshire straddles north-east Wales from the English border to the Conwy valley. Accordingly it had a characteristic range of Welsh speaking, from 9.9 per cent in Marford and Hoseley to 74.8 per cent in Llangernyw.

Harold Carter

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Denbighshire

Denbighshire (dĕn´bēshĬr), Welsh Sir Ddinbych, county, 326 sq mi (844 sq km), N Wales. In 1974, the old county of Denbighshire was divided between the nonmetropolitan counties of Clwyd and Gwynedd, but that portion that had been assigned to Clwyd was restored as the county of Denbighshire in 1996.

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