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Yorkshire is the largest traditional county of England, covering some 15,000 kmē with a population of some five million. It is traditonally divided into West, North Riding and East ridings (from Old Norse þriðing, "third part", a legacy of the area's ninth century Scandinavian settlers).

Much of Yorkshire is now represented by the region of Yorkshire and the Humber.

The emblem of Yorkshire is the white rose of the House of York, and there is a Yorkshire Day: August 1. There is also an "anthem" for the county in the form of the folk song "On Ilkley Moor Bah 'Tat".

The Yorkshire dialect is colloquially known as "Tyke", and this is also the affectionate term for a Yorkshireman. The social stereotype of a Yorkshireman has a tendency to include such accessories as a flat cap and a whippet.


These ridings were used as the basis of administrative counties upon the introduction of local government, in 1888, although many boroughs within the area were made county boroughs in their own right.

In 1974 this system was reformed, with the area being split between North Yorkshire, South Yorkshire, West Yorkshire, Humberside and Cleveland. South and West Yorkshire are termed metropolitan counties, as they cover mostly built-up areas. Additionally, small portions were ceded to the control of Cumbria, Lancashire and County Durham.

In 1986 the county councils of West and South Yorkshire were abolished, and in 1996 Humberside and Cleveland were broken up into districts, which became independent administrative counties (unitary authority areas) in their own right, as did an expanded City of York.

Towns and cities in Yorkshire

See also: Yorkshire Pudding, Yorkshire Wolds, Yorkshire Dales