Carrickfergus, a parliamentary borough and seaport of Ireland, county Antrim, situated on Belfast lough, 7 m. N. E. of Belfast; pop. in 1871, 9,452. The town extends about a mile along the shore of Carrickfergus bay, and consists of three parts: the old or walled town in the centre, the Irish quarter on the west, and the Scotch quarter on the east. The inhabitants of the last mentioned quarter are chiefly fishermen, descendants of a colony whom religious persecution drove thither in the 17th century. There is an old castle, once very strong, and still fortified. The other public buildings worthy of note are the parish church, an antiquated structure in the form of a cross, and the court house. There are also places of worship for Catholics, Presbyterians, Methodists, and Unitarians. There are flax-spinning mills, a muslin bleach green, and a linen bleach mill and green in the vicinity; and some trade is also carried on in tanning, brewing, and distilling. There is a semi-annual fair. It returns one member to parliament.
In ancient times the town was frequently attacked by the Scots. William III. landed here, June 14, 1690. In the roads opposite the town the British sloop of war Drake was captured by Paul Jones, April 24, 1778.