By Ian D. Whyte
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Extra info for A Dictionary of Environmental History
Ancient and planned countryside A division of England into two broad landscape categories recognized by early-modern topographers as woodland and champion (open ﬁeld) areas. Later landscape specialists recognized that parliamentary enclosure in England was concentrated in a belt of country from S England through the Midlands to the NE with regions of old enclosures on either side. This belt had been transformed in medieval times by the creation of open ﬁeld systems, many of which survived until enclosure in the C18.
The Aran Islands are a group of three islands in Galway Bay, W Ireland. Essentially, tilted limestone slabs with steep cliffs facing the Atlantic, similar to the Burren. Populated early in prehistory because of their light, well-drained soils. Many stone-walled ring forts survive from later prehistory in a good state of preservation, like Dun Aengus. The landscape is criss-crossed by a dense network of irregular stone walls. Artiﬁcial soil was created by carrying sand and seaweed up from the shore for potatoes and other vegetables.
Asteroid impacts Impacts on earth by large asteroids and comets are rare but are known to have occurred in the past, though they are outside recorded human experience. 50 m diameter.