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Glarus(glä`rəs), Fr. Glaris, canton (1993 pop. 39,000), 264 sq mi (684 sq km), E central Switzerland. Located in the basin of the Linth River, it is a mountainous and pastoral region, with forests and meadows in the valleys. It lies between the Walensee in the north and the Glarus Alps in the south. Cattle are raised in the canton, and there are industries producing electrical and metal goods, machinery, textiles, paper, and other goods. The inhabitants are mainly German-speaking Protestants. Sparsely settled by the Romans after 15 B.C., Glarus was permanently occupied c.A.D. 500 by the Alemanni. Glarus joined the Swiss Confederation in 1352. The town of Glarus (1990 pop. 5,541), on the Linth, is the capital. Furniture, textiles, and cigars are made there. Zwingli was a parish priest in the town from 1506 to 1516.
1. an Alpine canton of E central Switzerland. Capital: Glarus. Pop.: 38 400 (2002 est.). Area 684 sq. km (264 sq. miles)
2. a town in E central Switzerland, the capital of Glarus canton. Pop.: 5556 (2000)