Thick woodlands covered the island until the Middle Ages.As of 2013, the amount of land that is wooded in Ireland is about 11% of the total, compared with a European average of 35%.Irish culture has had a significant influence on other cultures, especially in the fields of literature.
During the last glacial period, and up until about 10,000 BC, most of Ireland was periodically covered in ice.
The Priteni were said to be the first, followed by the Belgae from northern Gaul and Britain.
Later, Laighin tribes from Armorica (present-day Brittany) were said to have invaded Ireland and Britain more or less simultaneously.
In 2011, the population of Ireland was about 6.4 million, ranking it the second-most populous island in Europe after Great Britain.
Just under 4.6 million live in the Republic of Ireland and just over 1.8 million live in Northern Ireland.Sea levels were lower and Ireland, like Great Britain, formed part of continental Europe.