Onta'rio, the easternmost and smallest (7240 sq. m.) of the five great lakes of North America, receives at its south-west corner the waters of the upper lakes by the Niagara River, and at its north-east corner issues into the St Lawrence. Its surface, which is subject to periodical variations of about 3 1/2 feet, is 326 3/10 feet below the surface of Lake Erie and 246 6/10 feet above the ocean-level. Its mean depth is about 300, its maximum depth 73S feet. It is 190 miles long, 55 in its widest part, and over 500 in circumference. Ports are Kingston, Coburg, Port Hope, Toronto, and Hamilton on the Canadian shore, and Sackett's Harbor, Oswego, and Charlotte in the United States. Lake Ontario is connected with Lake Erie by the Welland Canal, with the Erie Canal and river Hudson by the Oswego Canal, and by the Rideau Canal with the Ottawa; and In 1890 a ship-railway (69 miles) was projected, to connect it with Lake Huron. The lake is subject to violent storms, and it is probably owing chiefly to the constant agitation of its waters that it freezes only for a few miles from the shore. The shores are generally very flat, but the Bay of Quinte, near Kingston, a crooked arm of the lake, 50 miles long, possesses attractive scenery. Burlington Bay, on which Hamilton lies, is a large basin almost enclosed by a fine natural bank of sand. The name is Indian.
Onta'rio, the most populous and wealthy province of Canada, is bounded by James Bay, Labrador, Quebec, the St Lawrence and the Great Lakes (separating it from the United States), Manitoba, and Keewatin. Area, 222,000 sq. m.; pop. (1901) 2,1S2,947. The surface is generally undulating; for the Laurentian Hills, see Canada, p. 148. The principal rivers are tributaries of the Ottawa, which forms part of the NW. boundary. Among smaller lakes are Simcoe, Nipissing, and Nipigon. Immense crops are raised of all the products of a temperate climate, and in the south-west corner of the province Indian corn is a regular crop, and grapes, peaches, and tomatoes ripen in the open air. Stock-raising, dairy-farming, and fruit-growing are important industries. Iron is found in many parts; copper, lead, plumbago, apatite, antimony, arsenic, gypsum, marble, and building-stone are abundant; there are also gold and silver. The nickel deposits at Sudbury are probably the most extensive in the world. Petroleum wells in the SW., and salt wells near Lake Huron are very productive. The principal manufactures are agricultural implements, iron and wood ware, wagons and carriages, railway rolling-stock (including locomotives), cottons and woollens, leather, furniture, flax, hardware, paper, soap, woodenware, etc. The most thickly populated part of Ontario more nearly resembles England than any of the other colonies. There is only one large city, Toronto (208,000); but smaller cities and towns (including Hamilton, Ottawa, and London, between 60,000 and 39,000) are scattered all over the province. Ontario has a perfect network of railways (between 6000 and 7000 miles). Water-ways and water-power are exceptionally developed. The exports are, in order of value, agricultural products, animals and their produce, manufactures, lumber, and minerals. The public affairs are administered by a lieutenant-governor and a legislative assembly. Methodists are the most numerous religious body, followed by Presbyterians and the Church of England. Ontario, long known as Upper Canada, was largely founded by immigration of loyalists from the United States after the revolutionary war. See Canada.