Middlesex  England

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In 1887, John Bartholomew's Gazetteer of the British Isles described Middlesex like this:

Middlesex, south-midland co. of England, bounded N. by Herts, E. by Essex, W. by Bucks, and S. by the river Thames, which separates the county from Surrey; greatest length, NE. to SW., 24 miles; greatest breadth, N. to S., 18 miles; area, 181,317 ac.; pop. 2,920,485. Excepting Rutland, this is the smallest of the English counties; but as it contains the greater part of London, its population is second only to Lancashire, which has the highest position in point of numbers. ...

It is the metropolitan county of England. The appearance of the country is generally flat, with slight elevations on the Herts border and in the N. suburbs of London. The Thames, and its affluents the Colne, Lea, and Brent, are the only rivers, although there are several smaller streams in the co. Middlesex is likewise traversed by the Grand Junction, Paddington, and Regent Canals, also by the New River, an artificial watercourse constructed in the reign of James I. in connection with the water supply of the metropolis. The London clay forms the greater part of the soil, so that it is generally poor for farming operations except in some places on the banks of the Thames. Farming is carried on with much spirit, and with scientific attention. (For agricultural statistics, see Appendix.) A large number of market-gardens, in connection with the metropolitan supplies are to be found in the co. The co. comprises 6 hundreds, 222 pars., the parl. bors. of London City (2 members, and London University, 1 member), Bethnal Green (2 members), Chelsea (1), Finsbury (3), Fulham (1), Hackney (3), Hammersmith (1), Hampstead (1), Islington (4), Kensington (2), Marylebone (2), Paddington (2), St Pancras (4), Shoreditch (2), Tower Hamlets (7), and Westminster (3). It is mostly in the diocese of London. For Parliamentary purposes th" co. is divided into 7 divisions, viz., Enfield, Tottenham, Hornsey, Harrow, Baling, Brentford, and Uxbridge each division returning 1 member; the representation of Middlesex was increased from 2 to 7 members in 1885.

Vision of Britain presents long-run change by redistricting historical statistics to modern units. However, none of our modern units covers an area close to that of Middlesex. If you want trends covering a particular location within the county, find it on our historical maps and then select "Tell me more".

How to reference this page:

GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Middlesex | Map and description for the county, A Vision of Britain through Time.


Date accessed: 14th July 2024

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