most advantage in the Champagne and Argonne. Wheat and oats are the predominant cereals. Potatoes, rye, lucerne and other kinds of forage are also important crops. Pasturage is found chiefly on the banks of the Aisne and Meuse and on the plateau of Rocroi in the north. Horse-raising is carried on in the neighbourhood of Buzancy in the south, and at Bourg-Fidèle in the north. Fruit-growing is confined to the west and central districts. The working of slate is very important, especially in the neighbourhood of Fumay, and quarries producing freestone, lime-stone and other minerals are found in several places. Flour-mills, saw-mills, sugar-works, distilleries and leather-works are scattered over the department, but iron-founding and various branches of metal-working which are active along the valley of the Meuse (Nouzon, &c.) are the chief industries. To these may be added wool-weaving, centred at Sedan, and minor industries such as the manufacture of basket-work, wooden shoes, &c. Coal and raw wool are prominent imports, while iron goods, cloth, timber, live-stock, alcohol and the products of the soil are exported. Various branches of the Eastern railway traverse the department. The Meuse is canalized within the department, and the Canal des Ardennes, uniting that river with the Aisne, and the lateral canal of the Aisne are together about 65 m. long. Ardennes is divided into five arrondissements: Mézières, Rocroi, Rethel, Vouziers and Sedan, with 31 cantons and 503 communes. The department forms part of the ecclesiastical province of Reims and of the circumscriptions of the appeal-court of Nancy and the VI. army corps. In educational matters, it is included in the académie (educational area) of Lille. Mézières, the capital, Charleville, Rocroi, Sedan and Rethel are the chief towns. Outside them its finest examples of architecture are the churches of Mouzon (13th century) and Vouziers (15th century).
ARDGLASS (“Green Height”): a small town of Co. Down, Ireland, in the east parliamentary division, at the head of a rocky bay, in a picturesque situation between two hills, 32 m. S. by E. of Belfast on a branch of the Belfast & Co. Down railway. Pop. (1901) 501. Soon after the Norman invasion it became of the first importance as a port, a fact attested by the remains of no fewer than five castles in close proximity, which give the town a picturesque aspect. There are also an ancient church crowning the eastern hill, and a curious fortified warehouse (called the New Works), dating probably from the 14th century, when a trading company was established here under a grant from Henry IV. Ardglass was a royal burgh and sent a representative to the Irish parliament. The chief industry is the herring fishery. Ships of 500 tons may enter the harbour at all times. In summer Ardglass is a frequented resort of visitors; good bathing and a golf links contribute to its attractions.
ARDITI, LUIGI (1822-1903), Italian musical composer and conductor, was born in Piedmont, and studied music at the Conservatoire in Milan, starting professionally as a violinist, and touring with Bottesini, the double-bass player, in the United States in 1847. He began composing at an early age, and in 1840 produced an overture, followed by an opera I Briganti in 1841, and other works. He paid frequent visits to America, conducting the opera in New York, where he produced his La Spia in 1856. In 1858 he became conductor of the opera at Her Majesty’s theatre in London, and both in London and abroad he became famous in this capacity, having the reputation of being Madame Patti’s favourite conductor. His vocal waltz Il Bacio was often sung by her. In 1896 he published his Reminiscences, and after a long and active musical life he died at Brighton on the 1st of May 1903.
ARDMORE, a township and the county-seat of Carter county, Oklahoma, U.S.A., just S. of the Arbuckle Mountains, about 120 m. S. by E. of Guthrie. Pop. (1900) 5681; (1907) 8759 (2122 being negroes, and 108 Indians); (1910) 8618. It is served by the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific, the St Louis & San Francisco, and the Gulf, Colorado & Santa Fé railways. Ardmore is the market-town and distributing point for the surrounding agricultural region, which is the home of a large part of the Chickasaw and Choctaw nations. It is situated 890 ft. above the sea in a cotton and grain producing region, in which cattle are raised and fruit and vegetables grown; coal, oil, natural gas and rock asphalt (which is used for paving the streets of Ardmore) are found in the vicinity. Ardmore is an important cotton market, and has cotton gins, a cotton compress, machine shops, bridge works, foundries, bottling works and manufactories of cotton-seed oil, brick, concrete, flour, brooms, mattresses and dressed lumber. At Ardmore are the Saint Agnes Academy, a Catholic school for girls, and Saint Agnes College for boys, a conservatory of music, Hargrove College, and the Selvidge Commercial College. Near Ardmore is a summer school on the Chautauqua (q.v.) system. Ardmore was founded in 1887, and was incorporated in 1898.
ARDRES, a town of northern France in the department of Pas-de-Calais, 10½ m. by rail S.S.E. of Calais, with which it is also connected by a canal. Pop. (1906) 1269. The “Field of the Cloth of Gold,” where Henry VIII. of England and Francis I. of France met in 1520, was at Balinghem in the immediate neighbourhood. The town is an important market for cattle.
ARDROSSAN, a seaport, burgh of barony, and police burgh of Ayrshire, Scotland, 32 m. from Glasgow by the Glasgow & South-Western railway, and 29½ m. by the Lanarkshire & Ayrshire branch of the Caledonian railway. Pop. (1901) 6077. The rise of Ardrossan was due to the enterprise of Hugh, 12th earl of Eglinton, who began the construction of the present town and harbour in 1806. The harbour was intended to be in connexion with a canal from Glasgow to Ardrossan, but this was only completed as far as Johnstone. Owing to the costliness of the undertaking, and the death of the earl in 1819, the works were suspended after an outlay of £100,000, but his successor completed the scheme on a reduced scale at an expense of another £100,000. The dock accommodation has since been considerably extended, and the town enjoys great prosperity. Steamers run every week-day to Arran and Belfast, and during summer there is a service also to Douglas in the Isle of Man. The exports consist principally of coal and iron from collieries and ironworks in the neighbourhood; and the imports of timber, ores and general goods. Shipbuilding thrives and the fisheries are important. The town is governed by a provost and council.
Saltcoats (pop. 8120), a mile to the south, is a popular seaside resort, with a brisk trade, due to its proximity to Ardrossan and Stevenston; the making of salt, once a leading industry, has ceased.
Ardrossan dates from an early period. The name Arthur of Ardrossan is found in connexion with a charter dated 1226; and Sir Fergus of Ardrossan accompanied Edward Bruce in his Irish expedition in 1316, and in 1320 signed the appeal to the pope, made by the barons of Scotland, against the aggressions of England. The family of Ardrossan is now merged, by marriage, in that of the earl of Eglinton and Winton. The castle where Wallace surprised the English garrison and threw their corpses into the dungeon, grimly styled “Wallace’s Larder,” was finally destroyed by Cromwell, who is said to have used part of its masonry for the construction of the fort at Ayr; but its ruins still exist.
AREA, a Latin word, originally meaning a threshing-floor, namely a raised space in a field exposed on all sides to the wind; now applied in English (1) to a plot of ground on which a structure is to be erected, (2) to the court or sunk space in the front or rear of a building, (3) to the superficial space covered by a district, country, &c., or by a building or court.
ARECIBO, a city and port on the north coast of Porto Rico, at the mouth of a small stream called the Rio Grande de Arecibo, and contiguous to one of the most fertile regions of the island. Pop. (1899) 8008; of the tributary district, about 30,000; (1910) 9612. It is connected with San Juan, Mayaguez and Ponce by railway. It is a well-built and active commercial city, and has a large export trade in coffee and sugar. The harbour is an open roadstead, very dangerous to shipping in northerly winds, and the discharge and loading of cargoes is effected by means of lighters at considerable risk and expense. Arecibo was founded in 1788.