The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) and Britain, is a sovereign state located off the north-western coast of continental Europe. The country includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland and many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the UK that shares a land border with another state—the Republic of Ireland.
English is the official language in the United Kingdom. Native languages in the UK include Welsh, Cornish, Irish Gaelic, Scottish Gaelic, English, Scots and Ulster Scots. Other languages spoken apart from English are Polish, Punjabi, Bengali, Urdu, Cantonese, Greek and Creole.
The United Kingdom of Great Britain is an Island country located in the North-western coast of Europe. It contains England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Island. The United Kingdom is also referred to as Britain. London, the capital of Britain is a world leading commercial, cultural and financial centre.
Other cities in the United Kingdom include Birmingham, Liverpool, Manchester, Belfast, Londonderry, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Cardiff and Wales.
Summer, winter, autumn and spring are the 4 weather conditions experienced in the United Kingdom.
A combination of factors has influenced the culture of the United Kingdom including the distinct traditions, customs, and symbols of each individual country; the Island status of the nation, history, liberal democracy and its place as a major superpower. The British Empire culture can be observed in the government, language, legal system and culture of its former colonies. Britain is also referred to a cultural superpower.
The Union Flag also known as the Union Jack was created in 1606 by the superimposition of the Flag of England, Flag of Scotland, and an addition of St. Patrick’s Flag. God Save the King/Queen is the National Anthem. The national personification of the United Kingdom is the Britannia, a young woman holding Poseidon’s 3-pronged trident, a shield and bearing the Union Flag. She is symbolised with a brown/golden hair wearing a Corinthian helmet and a white robe.
Christianity is the country’s religion for more than 1400 years. Other religions practised in the United Kingdom are Islam, Hinduism, Sikhism, Judaism, and Buddhism. The Church of England has a representative in UK Parliament.
The government is led by the Prime Minister to govern the country and decide policies. The Monarchy, currently Queen Elizabeth II is the queen and head of state. The monarchy is the ceremonial head of state. The Parliament has 3 chambers: the House of Commons, the House of Lords, and the Queen.
The most powerful is the House of Commons where elected Members of Parliament and the Prime Minister sits. The House of Lords members are called peers, they are appointed by the government. Each country has its own devolved administration to make laws on education and health. The Parliament headquartered in the UK is sovereign and can end at any time other devolved administrations.
The UK has the 6th largest economy in the world. During the 18th to early 20th century, it was a world superpower considered to be the world’s most influential nation in politics, economy and military strength. The World Wars and the decline of the British Empire which stretched over Africa, America, Asia, Australia and several Islands led to a corresponding decline in its leading role in global affairs.
It is also a nuclear power and has strong economic, cultural, military and political influence.
A permanent member of the United Nations Security Council, and also holds a seat in the G8, Commonwealth of Nations headed by the Queen, NATO and the World Trade organization.
The history and influence of United Kingdom stretch over media, education, literature, music, Sports, cinema, transport, military, and arts.