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Sheffield

Sheffield was a comparatively late developer among the great English cities. Its situation was determined by the river Sheaf joining the Don: William de Lovetot built a castle in the angle in the 12th cent. together with a bridge. The property passed to the earls of Shrewsbury and thence to the dukes of Norfolk. As early as the 14th cent. Sheffield had a national reputation for cutlery, since Chaucer's Miller from Trumpington had a ‘Sheffield whittle’, a short dagger or knife, in his hose. By Leland's day, in the 1540s, it was ‘the chief market town of Hallamshire’. Its development as a great steel town depended upon local supplies of iron, the water-power of the Loxley, Rivelin, and Porter, as well as the Sheaf and Don, and sandstone for grinding. Camden's Britannia (1580s) found Sheffield ‘remarkable, among many other places hereabouts, for blacksmiths, there being much iron digged up in these parts’. The Cutlers' Company was granted a charter under the master cutler in 1624. Mary, queen of Scots, was held prisoner in the castle for thirteen years in the custody of George, earl of Shrewsbury, and the castle changed hands several times during the Civil War. Defoe in the 1720s found the town ‘very populous and large, the streets narrow, and the houses dark and black, occasioned by the continued smoke of the forges, which are always at work’. Two innovations in the 1740s and improved communications brought about the vast expansion. Thomas Boulsover invented Sheffield plate, silver on copper, and Benjamin Huntsman a new process for making steel: the Don was made navigable to Tinsley in 1751 and turnpike roads were opened to Chesterfield (1756), Wakefield (1758), and Worksop (1764). By 1801, Sheffield, with a population of 31,000, was the tenth town in England. It was given parliamentary representation by the Great Reform Act of 1832, acquired a town council in 1843, and by 1861 was fifth largest, with 185,000 people. It became a city in 1893, gained a university in 1905, was given cathedral status in 1914. But perhaps it took greater pleasure from passing Leeds in population in 1911. By the 1990s communications had been further improved with the M1 motorway, the population exceeded half a million, and it was the capital of the South Yorkshire metropolitan region.

J. A. Cannon

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Sheffield (city, England)

Sheffield, city and metropolitan borough (1991 pop. 470,685), N England, at the confluence of the Don River and four tributaries. Sheffield was one of the leading industrial cities of England. It has been a center of cutlery manufacture since the 14th cent. The Cutlers' Company, the governing body of cutlery manufacturers, was founded in the city in 1624. Silver and electroplate goods, tools, and heavy steel goods, including plates for artillery and rails, are also made. The first Bessemer-process steelworks were built in Sheffield in 1859; the industry is now all but finished. In the city's Weston Park are an observatory, City Museum, and the Mappin Art Gallery. Also of note is Graves Art Gallery. Educational institutions include the Univ. of Sheffield (1905) and Sheffield Polytechnic.

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Sheffield (city, United States)

Sheffield, industrial city (1990 pop. 10,380), Colbert co., NW Ala., on the Tennessee River near Muscle Shoals, in an iron and coal area; inc. 1885. Its varied manufactures include aluminum products, metals, structural castings, rolled rubber, and motor vehicle parts. Nearby Wilson Dam (1925) supplies power for the area's industries and has one of the world's highest single-lift locks. The home of Helen Keller is in nearby Tuscumbia.

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Sheffield, University of

University of Sheffield, at Sheffield, England; founded 1897 as University College, received royal charter 1905. It has faculties of arts, architectural studies, engineering, pure science, medicine, dentistry, law, social sciences, and educational studies.

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Sheffield

Sheffield City and county district in South Yorkshire, n England. A hilly city, it lies at the confluence of the River Don and its tributaries, the Sheaf, Rivelin, and Lordey. It is a major industrial centre, noted for its steel. Pop. (1997) 530,600.

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Sheffield

Sheffield •Schwarzwald • Buchenwald •beheld, eld, geld, held, meld, self-propelled, upheld, weld, withheld •Ziegfeld • unparalleled • spot-weld •unscaled •afield, field, midfield, misfield, shield, unaneled, unconcealed, unhealed, unpeeled, unrevealed, unsealed, wield, yield •backfield • battlefield • Mansfield •Garfield • Sheffield • Lee-Enfield •airfield • Wakefield • Masefield •Greenfield • Lichfield • brickfield •Springfield • Smithfield • minefield •cornfield • brownfield • outfield •snowfield •coalfield, goldfield, Sutton Coldfield •oilfield • Bloomfield • Nuffield •upfield • Huddersfield • Sellafield •chesterfield • windshield •gumshield •build, deskilled, gild, guild, self-willed, sild, unfilled, unfulfilled, unskilled, untilled, upbuild •Brunhild • Roskilde

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