The Cult of the Lake District

(5453 words)
  • Ian H. Thompson (University of Newcastle upon Tyne)

Literary/ Cultural Context Essay

The Lake District is a mountainous area in the North West of England. Since the Local Government Act of 1974, it has been situated entirely within the county of Cumbria, but previously it comprised parts of Cumberland, Westmorland and Lancashire. The district is little more than thirty miles wide and its highest fell, Scafell Pike, reaches only 3,210 feet (978 m), considerably less than Scotland’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis, at 4,409 feet (1,344 m) and a pygmy when set against the Matterhorn, which attains 14,6934 ft (4,478 metres). Yet the Lake District carries a weight of cultural significance that belies its small physical extent, having played a central role respectively in the growth of Picturesque tourism, the emergence of …

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Thompson, Ian H.. "The Cult of the Lake District". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 19 May 2010
[, accessed 24 September 2016.]

Related Groups

  1. Picturesque landscape and gardens