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“SOMERSET, or Somersetshire, a maritime county; bounded on the NW, by the Bristol channel; on the N, by Gloucestershire; on the E, by Wilts; on the SE, by Dorset; on the S, by Dorset and Devon; on the W, by Devon... Its greatest length is 71 miles; its greatest breadth is 40 miles... and its area is 1,047,220 acres.
Somerset is a rural county with rolling hills such as Blackdowns,Mendips and Quantocks. It is also has a national park (Exmoor National park).
There have been many People who have settled in Somerset, these include Romans and Anglo-Saxons.
“The county contains 466 parishes, parts of 2 others, and 6 extra-parochial tracts; is divided into 42 hundreds or liberties, and 6 boroughs; has 27 market-towns, 13 towns with each upwards of 2,000 inhabitants, and about 1,385 smaller towns, villages, and hamlets... and, with exclusion of Bedminster parish, constitutes the diocese of Bath and Wells. The assizes and the quarter sessions are held at Taunton, Bridgewater, and Wells...
“The places of worship, in 1851, were 553 of the Church of England, 110 of Independents, 89 of Baptists, 15 of Quakers, 8 of Unitarians, 1 of Moravians, 202 of Wesleyans, 33 of Primitive Methodists, 44 of Bible Christians, 4 of the Wesleyan Association, 26 of Wesleyan Reformers, 4 of Lady Huntingdon's Connexion, 2 of the New Church, 12 of Brethren, 9 of isolated congregations, 2 of the Catholic and Apostolic Church, 6 of Latter Day Saints, 8 of Roman Catholics, and 1 of Jews...
“Population in 1801 was 273,577; in 1821, 355,789; in 1841, 435,599; in 1861, 444,873...”
The above extract is taken from: John Marius Wilson, Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales (1870-72). For the full version, go online to Vision of Britain.