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Scottish Highlands (meaning Land of the Gaels) is a historic region of Scotland. It was culturally distinguishable from the Scottish Lowlands from the later Middle Ages into the Modern period, when English replaced Scottish Gaelic throughout most of the Lowlands. The term is also used for the area north and west of the Highland Boundary Fault, although the exact boundaries are not clearly defined, particularly to the east. The Great Glen divides the Grampian Mountains to the southeast from the Northwest Highlands.
The area is sparsely populated, with many mountain ranges dominating the region, and includes the highest mountain in Britain and Ireland, Ben Nevis. Before the 19th century the Highlands was home to a much larger population, but due to a combination of factors including the outlawing of the traditional Highland way of life following the Jacobite Rising of 1745, the infamous Highland Clearances, and mass migration to urban areas during the Industrial Revolution, the area is now one of the most sparsely populated in Europe.