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royal burgh (town) and fishing port, Highland council area, historic county of Caithness, Scotland. An ancient Norse settlement on the North Sea, situated about 14 miles (23 km) south of John o'Groats, Wick developed as a fishing port and centre and was designated a royal burgh in 1589. It expanded rapidly during the herring boom of the 19th century. Since then herring fishing has declined and been replaced by the smaller whitefish industry. Several light manufacturing industries have been established, including the Caithness glass-blowing factory, which attracts thousands of visitors each year. Wick Airport provides important links to cities to the south. Pop. (2001) 7,333.
thread, strip, or bundle of fibres that, by capillary action, draws up the oil of a lamp or the melted wax in a candle to be burned. By 1000 BC, wicks of vegetable fibres were used in saucer-type vessels containing olive oil or nut oil in order to provide light, and by 500-400 BC these wicks were in general domestic use. See lamp.