isle of ely

Ely

[ee-lee for 1, 2; ee-lahy for 3]
noun
1.
a former administrative county in E England: now part of Cambridgeshire.
2.
a town on this island: medieval cathedral.
3.
a male given name.
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World English Dictionary
Ely (ˈiːlɪ)
 
n
1.  a cathedral city in E England, in E Cambridgeshire on the River Ouse. Pop: 13 954 (2001)
2.  a former county of E England, part of Cambridgeshire since 1965

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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isle of ely

historic region of England, part of the administrative and historic county of Cambridgeshire. The Isle of Ely consists of a hill about 7 miles (11 km) long and 4 miles (6 km) wide that rises above the surrounding fens (low-lying lands that were partly covered by water). The Isle of Ely is the highest point in these fenlands and was formerly an island surrounded by marshes and swamps; it could be reached only by boat or causeway. This inaccessible location became the scene of Hereward the Wake's resistance to William I the Conqueror about 1070. In the 17th century the surrounding fens were drained, and the Isle of Ely is now simply a hill in the midst of a low, flat plain whose rich soils provide highly productive farmlands.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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