Lowlands Geography

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Lowlands Geography

The Lowlands is a cultural and historical region of Scotland, comprising the portion of the country southeast of a line drawn from Dumbarton to Stonehaven; northwest of the line are the Highlands. The Lowlands are traditionally distinguished by the use of the Scots language (considered a dialect or close relative of English) in contrast to the Scottish Gaelic (a Celtic language) spoken in the Highlands. The Lowlands, as a cultural area, include two main topographic regions: the Midland Valley (or Central Lowlands) and the Southern Uplands (of southern Scotland).

The Midland Valley is a geological rift valley that stretches from the Firth of Forth to the Firth of Clyde. It is characterized by a series of low ridges and hills that are separated by narrow valleys. The valley has a characteristic structure of sedimentary rocks with coal deposits, which has made it the most agriculturally productive region of Scotland historically. During the 19th and early 20th centuries, coal deposits promoted concentrated industrial activity and urbanization in the Midland Valley, where 80 percent of the population of Scotland now live. While coal mining and heavy industry have declined in the region, it remains at the center of the Scottish economy, with electronics and computer manufacture and service sectors such as telecommunications, computer software, and finance.

The Southern Uplands are a range of hills and mountains that extend from the Scottish Borders to the Firth of Clyde. The region is characterized by rolling hills, deep valleys, and narrow glens. The Southern Uplands are home to several rivers, including the Tweed, Clyde, and Annan. The region is also known for its forests, lochs, and wildlife, including red deer, otters, and golden eagles.

In summary, the Lowlands region of Scotland is a culturally and historically rich area that includes two main topographic regions: the Midland Valley and the Southern Uplands. The Midland Valley is a geological rift valley that has a characteristic structure of sedimentary rocks with coal deposits, which has made it the most agriculturally productive region of Scotland historically. The Southern Uplands are a range of hills and mountains that are home to several rivers, forests, lochs, and wildlife. The Lowlands region has played a significant role in the Scottish economy, with electronics and computer manufacture and service sectors such as telecommunications, computer software, and finance being the major contributors to the economy.