Lincolnshire, a maritime county of England, after Yorkshire the largest in the country, is bounded N. by the Humber, E. by the North Sea, the Wash, and Norfolk, and elsewhere by Cambridge, Northampton, Rutland, Leicester, Nottingham, and York shires. Measuring 75 miles from N. to S., and 48 from E. to W., it has a seaboard of about 90, and contains 2672 sq. m., or 1,767,879 acres. Pop. (1801) 208,557 ; (1841)362,602; (1901) 498,781. The surface is comparatively flat: along the coast stretch low-lying marshes, from which in places the sea is only kept out by means of embankments. West of these marshes lie the Wolds, a range of chalk downs, which, commencing near Barton-on-Humber in the north, extend thence 40 miles south-eastward to the neighbourhood of Spilsby and Horncastle. The western side of the county, from the Humber in the north through Lincoln to Grantham in the south, consists principally of light uplands, whilst in the south-east are fens forming part of the Bedford Level (q.v.). The chief rivers are the Trent, Witham, and Welland; and a noticeable feature of the county are the numerous canals which intersect it - Car-dyke and Foss-dyke, the two largest, being probably the work of the Romans. Near Ancaster limestone is extensively quarried, and in the western districts ironstone abounds. The chief crops are corn and turnips, and in places flax is cultivated; the county is famous for its rich 'warp-lands' along the banks of the Trent, and its immense flocks of sheep. Horse-breeding, too, is extensively prosecuted, with great horse-fairs at Horncastle and Lincoln; other industries are the manufacture of agricultural implements and machinery, and the shipping trade and fisheries of Grimsby.
Lincolnshire is divided into three districts or * Parts' - viz. the Parts of Holland in the southeast, comprising the greater part of the Fens, the Parts of Kesteven in the south-west, and the Parts of Lindsey, which is by far the largest, occupying the remainder of the county. These Parts, each with its own county council, are subdivided into thirty-one wapentakes or hundreds, the city of Lincoln and the municipal boroughs of Boston, Grantham, Great Grimsby, and Louth, with part of Stamford (the rest being in Northamptonshire), and contain in all 757 parishes, almost entirely situate in the diocese of Lincoln and midland circuit. For parliamentary purposes the county is divided into seven divisions, and the boroughs of Boston, Grantham, Grimsby, and Lincoln, each returning one member. Other towns are Clee-thorpes (practically a suburb of Grimsby), Gainsborough, Sleaford, Spalding, and Sutton.
The insurrection known as the 'Pilgrimage of Grace' (1536) broke out in Lincolnshire; and in 1643, during the Civil War, Ancaster, Gainsborough, Grantham, and Winceby were the scene of contests between the rival forces. To the antiquary Lincolnshire is of special interest on account of the beauty of its many churches - Boston, Crowle, Grantham, Heckington, Louth, Long Sutton, and Tattershall amongst them ; whilst of other places of interest it will suffice to mention here the ruined abbey of Crowland, and Boling-broke Castle, the home of John of Gaunt and of his son Henry IV. Other eminent persons associated with the county include Bishop Grosseteste; John Foxe, the martyrologist; William Cecil, Lord Burghley; Captain John Smith; Archbishop Whitgift; Heywood, the dramatist; Sir Isaac Newton; Thomas Sutton, founder of the Charterhouse ; Dr Busby, head-master of Westminster; John Wesley; Scott, the commentator; Sir John Franklin; Dr Dodd, the forger ; Dr Lingard; Lord Tennyson ; Dr Latham ; Worth ' of Paris ; Jean Ingelow; and Conington. See works by Allen (1834), Anderson (1880), Venables and Perry (1897).