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The Biological Vice-Counties of Ireland

D. A. Webb
Proceedings of the Royal Irish Academy. Section B: Biological, Geological, and Chemical Science
Vol. 80B (1980), pp. 179-196
Published by: Royal Irish Academy
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/20494359
Page Count: 18
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The Biological Vice-Counties of Ireland
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Abstract

The history of the division of Ireland into biological vice-counties, originally used to record the distribution of higher plants and later adopted by workers on other groups of organisms, is summarised. A number of ambiguities and errors are discussed, and attention is drawn to the changes in administrative county-boundaries in 1898-1900; the effect of these on the biological scheme has never received proper attention. The principle adopted by the Praeger Committee of the Royal Irish Academy in 1969, that the biological vice-counties should be defined in accordance with the frontispiece map of Praeger's "Irish Topographical Botany" (1901), is here reaffirmed (subject to the correction of three very small errors in the printing of the map). The vice-counties are listed and defined more precisely than has hitherto been done and sketch-maps are given to illustrate those divergences from the administrative boundaries of today which cannot be easily expressed in words.

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