Cuenca. I. A Province Of Spain, in New Castile, bordering on the provinces of Guadalajara, Teruel, Valencia, Albacete, Ciudad Real, Toledo, and Madrid; area, 6,722 sq. m.; pop. in 1867, 242,231. It is one of the most mountainous provinces S. of the Ebro. The principal rivers are the Jucar, its affluent the Cabriel, and the Guadiela, an affluent of the Tagus. The products are timber, excellent honey, several minerals, oil, fruit, hemp, flax, and grain, and wine in the S. W. part. The principal exports are saffron and a superior quality of wool. Only one sixth of the soil is cultivated, and most of the remainder is pasturage. There are several medicinal springs in the province. The woollen industry, for which it was renowned in former times, has much declined. It has no town considerable for its population or trade. II. The capital of the province, one of the most picturesque towns of Spain, about 3,400 ft. above sea level, between the heights of San Cristobal and Socorro, at the confluence of the Huescar and Jucar, 85 m. S. E. of Madrid; pop. about 7,000. Once celebrated for arts, literature, and industry, it is now remarkable only for its Moorish aspect, its cathedral, and its scenery. Beautiful forests, called los pinares de Cuenca, adjoin the town, as well as many lakes and streams.
Near the cathedral is the bishop's palace. Besides a number of churches, the city contains three hospitals, three colleges, and a clerical seminary. The most remarkable bridge of Cuenca is that of San Pablo over the Huescar. The town is surrounded by high old walls, and has woollen factories, paper mills, and establishments for washing wool.