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Harlech (härˈlĕkh, –lĕk, härˈlē) [key], town (1981 pop. 1,372), Gwynedd, W Wales. It is a resort area with beautiful beaches. The ancient capital of Merionethshire, with its 13th-century castle, rests on a cliff 200 ft (61 m) above the modern seaside town. The heroic defense of the castle against the Yorkists (1468; see Roses, Wars of the) is the theme of the Welsh battle song, "The March of the Men of Harlech." The Welsh fortress was the last to surrender (1647) to the parliamentarians in the English civil war. Portmeiron, a resort and architectural fantasy, is to the north across the Dwyryd River.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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