Portal:England

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Flag of England
Location of England within the United Kingdom.

England (About this sound /ˈɪŋɡlənd/ ) is a country that is part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Its mainland is on the central and southern part of the island of Great Britain in the North Atlantic. England shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; and adjoins the Irish Sea to the north-west, the Celtic Sea to the south-west and the North Sea to the east. The English Channel separates it from continental Europe. In addition to the mainland, England includes over 100 smaller islands, including the Isles of Scilly and the Isle of Wight. England's population is about 51 million, around 84% of the United Kingdom.

England has been settled by humans of various cultures for over 29,000 years but it takes its name from the Angles, one of the Germanic tribes who settled Great Britain during the 5th and 6th centuries. England became a unified state in AD 927 and after the Age of Discovery has had a significant cultural and legal impact on the wider world. England was where the English language, the Anglican Church and English law, which forms the basis of the common law legal systems of countries around the world, developed. The innovations that came from England have been widely adopted by other nations, such as its parliamentary system, which is the world's oldest. During the 18th century England underwent the Industrial Revolution and became the first country in the world to industrialise. Its Royal Society laid the foundations of modern experimental science.

Most of England is lowland but there are upland regions in the north (such as the Lake District, Pennines and Yorkshire Moors) and in the south and south west (such as Dartmoor, the Cotswolds, and the North and South Downs). London, a global city and England's capital, is the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. The population of England is concentrated in London and the South East, as well as the conurbations in the Midlands, the North West, the North East and Yorkshire, which developed as major industrial regions during the 19th century.

The Kingdom of England (which included Wales) was a sovereign state until 1 May 1707 when the Acts of Union put into effect the terms agreed in the Treaty of Union the previous year and resulted in a political union with the Kingdom of Scotland that created the united Kingdom of Great Britain. In 1800 Great Britain was united with Ireland through another Act of Union 1800 to become the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. In 1922 the Irish Free State was established as a separate dominion but the Royal and Parliamentary Titles Act in 1927 reincorporated into the kingdom six Irish counties to officially create the current United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

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A Herdwick ewe

The Herdwick is a traditional breed of domestic sheep native to the mountainous Lake District of Cumbria in North West England. The name "Herdwick" is derived from the Old Norse herdvyck, meaning sheep pasture. Though low in lambing capacity and wool quality when compared to more common commercial breeds such as Merino sheep, Herdwicks are prized for their robust health, their ability to live solely on forage, and their tendency not to stray over the difficult upland terrain of the Lake District. An integral part of the cultural identity of the Lake District, the breed is for the most part found in the central and western dales of the region.

Severely threatened by the 2001 outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in England and Wales, the breed has survived due to the intent to preserve this unique animal as a crucial part of traditional Lakeland agriculture. Still far less in number than most commercial breeds, Herdwicks survive largely due to farming subsidies and the aid of the British National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty.

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Broadway tower

Photo credit: Newton2/YFB

Broadway Tower is a folly located near the village of Broadway, Worcestershire, England, at one of the highest points of the Cotswolds. Its base is 1,024 feet (312 m) above sea level, the tower itself standing 55 feet (17 m) tall. On a clear day, thirteen counties of England can be seen from its top.


Selected biography

William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare (baptised 26 April 1564 – 23 April 1616) was an English poet and playwright, widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world's pre-eminent dramatist. He is often called England's national poet and the "Bard of Avon" (or simply "The Bard"). His surviving works consist of 38 plays, 154 sonnets, two long narrative poems, and several other poems. His plays have been translated into every major living language, and are performed more often than those of any other playwright.

Shakespeare was born and raised in Stratford-upon-Avon. At the age of 18 he married Anne Hathaway, who bore him three children: Susanna, and twins Hamnet and Judith. Between 1585 and 1592 he began a successful career in London as an actor, writer, and part owner of the playing company the Lord Chamberlain's Men, later known as the King's Men. He appears to have retired to Stratford around 1613, where he died three years later. Few records of Shakespeare's private life survive, and there has been considerable speculation about such matters as his sexuality, religious beliefs, and whether the works attributed to him were written by others.

Shakespeare produced most of his known work between 1590 and 1613. His early plays were mainly comedies and histories, genres he raised to the peak of sophistication and artistry by the end of the sixteenth century. Next he wrote mainly tragedies until about 1608, including Hamlet, King Lear, and Macbeth, considered some of the finest examples in the English language. In his last phase, he wrote tragicomedies, also known as romances, and collaborated with other playwrights. Many of his plays were published in editions of varying quality and accuracy during his lifetime, and in 1623 two of his former theatrical colleagues published the First Folio, a collected edition of his dramatic works that included all but two of the plays now recognised as Shakespeare's.

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The Palace of Westminster

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George Mikes

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EnglandBedfordshireBrightonCheshireCornwallDerbyshireGreater ManchesterHampshireLincolnshireLondonMerseysideNorthamptonshireNorth East EnglandSheffieldSurrey. WarwickshireWest MidlandsWorcestershireYorkshire

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Cities and major towns: BlackpoolBirminghamBristolChelmsfordLeedsLiverpoolLondonManchesterNewcastleNottinghamOxfordPortsmouthSheffieldSouthamptonStoke-on-Trent

Culture: The Football AssociationRugby Football UnionEngland and Wales Cricket BoardEnglish inventions and discoveries

Geography: GeologyClimateMountains and hillsIslandsRivers

Economy: Bank of EnglandLondon Stock ExchangeChancellor of the ExchequerMonetary Policy CommitteeHM Treasury

History: Timeline of English historyPrehistoric BritainRoman BritainAnglo-Saxon EnglandHouse of LancasterHouse of YorkHouse of TudorHouse of Stuart

Governance: Kingdom of EnglandPrime Minister of the United KingdomParliament of the United KingdomHome SecretaryLocal Government Boundary Commission for EnglandAdministrative divisions of EnglandEnglish law

Symbols: FlagsFlag of EnglandSt George's CrossTudor roseCoat of arms of England

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Counties



Ireland
Northern Ireland
Isle of Man
Wales
Scotland
United Kingdom
English Law
Ireland Northern Ireland Isle of Man Wales Scotland United Kingdom English law

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