England vs UK


No one can deny that it is a pretty common thing for people to call the United Kingdom as England. Moreover, it is not because of the lack of scientific awareness, but, in particular, because of the acceptation of no difference that has already become ingrained in everyday peoples' lives. Although, for those ones, who strictly adhere the traditions of national character and highly promote this trend, there are some issues, which might be considered when talking about England and the United Kingdom separately.

The first distinguishing factor to note is, certainly, the geographical affiliation, which emphasizes the priority of the United Kingdom as the world-famous and prosperous state over England, one of the four administrative units (consistent parts) of the country. It is appropriate to note that both, the United Kingdom and England (as well as Scotland and Wales), might be referred to as countries, but the meaning "state" as a political term applies only to the United Kingdom, the full title of which is the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Irelan.

One should differentiate:

England (the land of Angles tribes initially) – the historical land and the administrative unit of the UK, or a part of Great Britain.
Great Britain – the consistent part of the United Kingdom along with Northern Ireland, which unites England, Wales and Scotland. It is also the name of the isle, where all these three parts are situated.  The first mentioning of Great Britain dates back to the 1603, when King James I of England ruled the country.

The United Kingdom – the common name of the country.

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland – the name of the country since the Republic of Ireland was included (1801).

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland – the current formal name of the United Kingdom.

The historical context of both areas should be taken into account too. England, being one of the United Kingdom’s historical lands, appears to be the core “piece” of the whole country, where the initial development occurred. In particular, it was settled by Angles, Saxons, Jutes and Frisians in the 5th century and preserved its status as the separate state until it conquered Wales in the 12th century and added Scotland in the 18th century. Since that time Great Britain emerged, which transformed into the United Kingdom in 1801 (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland). The current name of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland was proclaimed in1922 since Anglo-Irish Treaty was signed. It leads to the conclusion that England has been present in the history of the United Kingdom for the entire lifetime of the country.

One more noticeable interrelation between England and the UK is that culture in the United Kingdom is mainly determined by the culture of England, with an addition of local cultural traditions of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, and, albeit to a lesser extent, cultural features of many countries, once former colonies of the British Empire. The old ancestral castles with the ghosts wandering out there, the ancient universities, the famous English pubs, as well as the royal family, considered to be the subject of passionate interest and pride of the entire British population – all that is England. England has made a huge contribution to the development of architectural styles, literature and drama in contrast to other parts of the United Kingdom.

Who does not familiar with works of William Shakespeare, Charles Dickens or Geoffrey Chaucer, who obtained the international glory of being specifically English writers? It is also appropriate to remind of royal history, which beyond any doubt is related to London and England, and its influence on the culture and religion of the country goes without saying.

It also applies to Englishmen vs British: it is in national etiquette to call people from England solely as Englishmen and those ones from Ireland or Scotland remain British.