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Pale. 1 In Irish and English history, that district of indefinite and varying limits around Dublin, in which English law prevailed. The term was first used in the 14th cent. to designate what had previously been called English land. Outlying districts were styled the marches, or border lands. In the time of Henry VIII the Pale extended N from Dublin to Dundalk and c.20 mi (32 km) inland from the coast. It disappeared in the ensuing years as the English control of the whole of Ireland was made effective. There was another English Pale in France, comprising Calais and the surrounding area, until 1558.

2 In Russia the Pale designated those regions in which Jews were allowed to live. The Jewish Pale was established in 1792, when it comprised the areas annexed from Poland in the first partition. The area was extended (partly as a result of further annexations), but even within the Pale the Jewish population was subjected to many restrictions. Most of these were in force until the Russian Revolution of 1917.

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



the name of an English colony in southeastern Ireland founded by Anglo-Norman feudal lords in the 1170’s. The name entered into use in the second half of the 14th century.

The borders of the Pale changed in the course of the struggle of the invaders with the population of the independent part of the island. Castles and fortifications were erected in the border zone. By the late 15th century the Pale comprised the presentday counties of Louth, Meath, Dublin, and Kildare. The Pale served as the base for the Complete subjugation of Ireland by the English in the 16th and 17th centuries.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


1. A flat strip (slat) or round stake, usually of wood; set in series to form a fence.
2. An area enclosed by such stakes.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
But for me, the strengths of Beyond the Pale are those of the traditional epic: compelling characters living through crushing forces of history; a point of view that transcends the limitations of the everyday and offers historical sweep; a story that enthralls and surprises; an authorial voice that wraps you completely in another world.
Beyond the Pale has its funny and delightful moments, its lovely scenes where women discover each other's bodies and their own.
Incidentally, Hale's reports that the term "beyond the pale" can be traced back to the English conquest of Ireland.
It is beyond the pale & I think the community sees it as a disgrace PUP'S JOHN KYLE yesterday
CUTS to benefits for disabled people are bad enough - but allowing private companies to make money out of the misery inflicted on claimants is beyond the pale.
Rather, Dershowitz argued that the BDS movement's opposition to the Jewish state's existence and the two-state solution put it beyond the pale.
''Godfrey has gone beyond the pale. He's a friend of mine but I think we have no option but to remove the whip from him.
Farage said that Bloom had "gone beyond the pale" and promised to discuss his position with Ukip's party chairman.
The cavalier attitude that this council has is beyond the pale.
But am I alone in thinking the actions of some teachers in our city this week has gone beyond the pale? Staff at Cardinal Newman school in Keresley banned some kids from taking their maths GCSE exam for wearing the wrong shoes.
I will not offend your sensibilities with the plot-line, which is completely irredeemable and goes far beyond the pale of human decency.
ON DISPLAY: Honley artist Jeff Beaumont pictured at the preview of his exhibition, at Holmfirth Civic Hall, 'Far Beyond the Pale Horizon'