Quebec (Kwe-bek'; Fr. Quebec, pron. Kay-bek'), a province of Canada, between Ontario and New Brunswick. Area (with additions up to 1900), 347,350 sq. miles. The surface comprises great rivers and lakes, large stretches of agricultural land, and immense forests. S. of the St Lawrence are the Notre Dame or Green Mountains, while on the N. is the Laurentian Range. The St Lawrence (q.v.) has many tributaries of great length, the Ottawa, St Maurice, Saguenay, etc. Of numerous lakes, the best known are Temisca-mingue, Metapedia,Temiscouata, Memphremagog, and St John. The province has a coast-line of 825 miles on the Atlantic. The winter is slightly colder than in the other parts of eastern Canada. The soil is rich and loamy, well adapted for cereals, hay, and root-crops. Indian corn, hemp, flax, and tobacco are also raised. Fruit is grown, especially apples and plums, which are exported; grapes ripen in the open air. Tomatoes are also a field-crop. Cattle-breeding is carried on, and large numbers of animals are exported to Britain. The fisheries in the River and Gulf of St Lawrence are very prolific, and all the smaller rivers teem with fish. Alluvial gold is found in various places, and copper in the eastern townships, while iron is very generally distributed. Other minerals are lead, silver, platinum, zinc, asbestos, and apatite, or phosphate of lime. Agriculture and dairy-farming form the chief occupations of the people; but lumbering, mining, shipbuilding, manufactures, fisheries, and commerce employ many. The affairs of the province, which is divided into 63 counties, are administered by a lieutenant-governor, an executive council of 24 life-members, and a legislative assembly of 73 persons elected every four years. The province is represented in the Dominion Senate by 24 members, and in the House of Commons by 65. Pop. (1871) 1,191,516; (1881) 1,359,027; (1901) 1,648,898, of whom about 80 per cent. were French-Canadians, descendants of the French settlers living in the country when it was transferred to Great Britain in 1763. The French population then did not exceed 70,000, so that the progress in 130 years is in strange contrast to the state of things in old France. Families of twelve and fourteen are quite common amongst French-Canadians. The English population does not increase in the same way. Farms are subdivided amongst all the children as in France. In religion the Roman Catholics naturally prevail, but the rights of the Protestant minority are protected by statute. The two Protestant universities are M'Gill at Montreal and Bishop's College at Lennoxville; Laval, the Catholic university, is at Quebec. The principal city in the province is Montreal (pop. 270,000), the commercial metropolis of the Dominion. Quebec, the most historic city in Canada, is the seat of the provincial government.
Quebec, the capital, is situated on a steep promontory, on the north-west bank of the St Lawrence, 300 miles from the Gulf of St Lawrence and 180 below Montreal (172 by rail). The highest part of the headland is Cape Diamond, 333 feet above the river. Quebec is the most important military position in Canada; its citadel occupies an area of 40 acres, and commands a magnificent view. The harbour is spacious, and the docks and tidal basin are perfect specimens of engineering skill; on the Levis side of the river in the extensive graving-dock. The city is divided into an Upper and Lower Town, whilst westward are the thriving suburbs of St John, St Louis, and St Roch's - the latter having immense warehouses and stores. To the south-west of St John are the Plains of Abraham, the historic battlefield, with a column 40 feet high to the memory of General Wolfe. Another monument, 65 feet high, dedicated to Wolfe and Montcalm, is situated in the Governor's Garden, and immediately overlooks the St Lawrence. On the Ste Foye Road is an iron pillar crowned by a bronze statue, commemorating the deeds of the British and French under Murray and Levis in 1760. There is a shaft also to the memory of Jacques Cartier and the Jesuit Brebeuf. Four martello towers occupy elevated positions. In the Upper Town is Dufterin Terrace, 1400 feet long and 200 feet above the water level, commanding a noble view. The Grand Battery is also picturesquely situated. Three handsome modern gates have replaced the old ones. The principal edifices are the parliamentary and departmental buildings, court-house, Eost-office, custom-house, city hall, masonic hall, basilica, the archiepiscopal palace, the Anglican Cathedral, Church Hall, and Young Men's Christian Association building. Laval University, named after the first Roman Catholic bishop of Quebec, who in 1663 founded the seminary, has a library of 150,000 volumes, a museum and art gallery, laboratory, etc. Morrin College (Presbyterian) is affiliated with M'Gill University. The water-supply is from Lake St Charles. The city is lighted with gas and electricity, the power for the latter being afforded by the Falls of Montmorency, 9 miles distant. Quebec is connected with all parts of America by rail, and is at the head of ocean steamship navigation. Shipbuilding has fallen off. The manufactures are worsted goods, iron-castings, machinery, cartridges, cutlery, nails, leather, musical instruments, boots and shoes, paper, tobacco, steel, etc. The chief exports are timber and lumber. Quebec is the seat of a R. C. archbishop and an Anglican bishop. Cartier visited the site, Stadacone, in 1535; and in 1608 Cham plain founded and named the town, which was the centre of French trade, civilisation, and missions till 1759, when it was captured by Wolfe. In 1763 it was ceded to Great Britain. Pop. (1852) 42,052; (1881) 62,446; (1901) 68,844. See works by Lemoine (1876), Mercier (1890), and Sir Gilbert Parker (1903); and for the siege, Doughty and Parnell (6 vols. 1903).