The River Dee (Welsh: Afon Dyfrdwy =”divine river”) flows from Bala Lake in Gwynedd, central Wales, UK and flows a meandering but generally northeasterly course for some 70 miles (112 km) before turning north-west into the broadening Dee estuary which extends another 12 miles (20 km) into the Irish Sea between the Wirral peninsula (England) to the east and Flintshire (Wales) to the west. Part of its lower course forms the border between Wales and England, as does the estuary. The river enters England near Chester for a brief distance.
The “Sands of Dee” of the estuary and their treacherous tides have been notoriously dangerous throughout history, even entering literature through Milton who lost a friend there in 1637, Charles Kingsley’s poem about the death of a young girl in the mid nineteenth century, and even a limerick by Edward Lear. A popular English folk ballad celebrates an historical “Miller of Dee”.("I care for nobody, no not I, for nobody cares for me")