Ireland and Its Names

The island of Ireland is located to the west of the United Kingdom. Between them lies the Irish Sea.

Ireland lies to the west of the United Kingdom

Ireland lies to the west of the United Kingdom

Ireland is divided into two parts.

The larger part is the Republic of Ireland. Its name in English is Ireland. Its name in the Irish language is Eire. The capital is Dublin.

Ireland’s four historical provinces are:
Connacht (west)
Leinster (east)
Munster (south)
Ulster (north)

These provinces are divided into 32 counties. Twenty-six of the counties are in the Republic of Ireland. The remaining six counties make up Northern Ireland.

The 32 counties of Ireland

The 32 counties of Ireland

Northern Ireland is not a separate country, but a division of the United Kingdom. Its capital is Belfast. The six counties of Northern Ireland all lie within the province of Ulster. For this reason the word Ulster is often used as another designation for Northern Ireland.

Because Ireland’s climate contributes to the growth of a lush vegetation, the island is known poetically as the Emerald Isle.

emerald: a precious stone of bright green color
isle: another word for “island”

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