Did you know that The United Kingdom and Great Britain aren’t the same? No? Then it’s time we informed you before your stay at Eurospeak!
Although the difference is hard for many outsiders to see, let alone important, if you have contact with the residents, you can prevent yourself from putting your foot in it (by the way, this is an idiom and means to spoil yourself with someone, although you could have easily prevented it). So, let’s go:
Starting with the largest unit: The United Kingdom(UK). This is a sovereign state which is a member of both the EU and the UN. The United Kingdom consists of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. You have read correctly, only Northern Ireland.
Now you’re probably asking yourself which countries make up the United Kingdom.
First of all, of course England, which lies in the south of Great Britain. Both the area and the population of England make up the largest part of the United Kingdom. The capital city, of England as well as of the whole United Kingdom, is London. It is also the third largest city in Europe (after Moscow and Istanbul). England is often said to mean the entire kingdom. This mistake can no longer happen to you!
Scotland also belongs to the United Kingdom. This lies in the northern third of Great Britain and also consists of several island groups. The capital city of Scotland is Edinburgh.
There is also Wales, which lies in the west of Great Britain and borders England and the Irish Sea. The capital city of Wales is Cardiff.
The three countries you got to know so far are also Great Britain. Great Britain is indeed an island and the largest in Europe.
As you may already know, Northern Ireland(and Ireland anyway) does NOT belong to Great Britain. Instead, it is on the island of Ireland, west of Great Britain. As the name suggests, it is located in the north of Ireland and the capital city is Belfast.
- England + Scotland + Wales + Northern Ireland = United Kingdom
- But at the same time independent countries!
- England + Scotland + Wales = Great Britain