The county is situated mostly in the basin of the Erne, which divides the county into two nearly equal sections.
Its surface is hilly, and its appearance (in many parts) somewhat sterile, though in the main, and especially in the neighbourhood of Lough Erne, it is picturesque and attractive.
But the most distinguishing features of Fermanagh are the Upper and Lower Loughs Erne, which occupy a great extent of its surface, stretching for about 45 m.
These lakes are expansions of the river Erne, which enters the county from Cavan at Wattle Bridge.
It passes Belturbet, the Loughs Erne, Enniskillen and Belleek, on its way to the Atlantic, into which it descends at Bailyshannon.
Upper Lough Erne is a typical meandering lake of the limestone lowland, with outliers of higher Carboniferous strata forming highlands northeast and south-west of it.
Garrison, a fishing station on the wild Lough Melvin, and Pettigo, near to the lower Lough Erne, are market villages.
The chief place of interest to the antiquary is Devenish Island in Lough Erne, about 2 m.
Donegal, Ireland, in the south parliamentary division, at the mouth of the Erne; on the Bundoran branch of the Great Northern railway.
The Ulster Canal begins at Charlemont on the river Blackwater, near its junction with Lough Neagh, proceeding through the western border of the county, and passing thence to the south-west by Monaghan and Clones into Upper Lough Erne, after a course of 48 m.
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Every variety of form is seen, from steep flat-topped table-mountains as near Loughs Neagh and Erne, to peaks such as those of the Twelve Pins or Bens of Connemara.
On the west the rivers are generally short and torrential, excepting the Erne, which drains the two beautiful loughs of that name in county Fermanagh, and the Shannon, the chief river of Ireland, which, rising in a mountain spring in county Cavan, follows a bow-shaped course to the south and south-west, and draws off the major part of the waters of the plain by tributaries from the east.
(2) The Shannon, itself forming several large loughs, as Allen, Ree and Derg; and the Erne, whose course lies almost wholly through loughs - Gowna, Oughter and the Loughs Erne, irregular of outline and studded with islands - separate this region from the principal lake-region of Ireland, coincident with the province of Connaught.
One of these on the north side of Lough Erne is 15 m.
The name Lough Erne), Vennicnii, Rhobogdii, Darini and Eblanii, none of whom can be identified with certainty.
Carlow, Kilkenny and the territory round Lough Neagh were settled, and after the capture of Lough Erne in 932 much of Longford was colonized.