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Location of England within the United Kingdom.

England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west. The Irish Sea lies northwest of England and the Celtic Sea lies to the southwest. England is separated from continental Europe by the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south. The country covers five-eighths of the island of Great Britain, which lies in the North Atlantic, and includes over 100 smaller islands, such as the Isles of Scilly and the Isle of Wight.

The area now called England was first inhabited by modern humans during the Upper Palaeolithic period, but takes its name from the Angles, a Germanic tribe deriving its name from the Anglia peninsula, who settled during the 5th and 6th centuries. England became a unified state in the 10th century, and since the Age of Discovery, which began during the 15th century, has had a significant cultural and legal impact on the wider world. The English language, the Anglican Church, and English law – the basis for the common law legal systems of many other countries around the world – developed in England, and the country's parliamentary system of government has been widely adopted by other nations. The Industrial Revolution began in 18th-century England, transforming its society into the world's first industrialised nation.

England's terrain is chiefly low hills and plains, especially in central and southern England. However, there are uplands in the north (for example, the mountainous Lake District, and the Pennines) and in the west (for example, Dartmoor and the Shropshire Hills). The capital is London, which has the largest metropolitan area in both the United Kingdom and the European Union. England's population of over 53 million comprises 84% of the population of the United Kingdom, largely concentrated around London, the South East, and conurbations in the Midlands, the North West, the North East, and Yorkshire, which each developed as major industrial regions during the 19th century.

The Kingdom of England – which after 1535 included Wales – ceased being a separate sovereign state on 1 May 1707, when the Acts of Union put into effect the terms agreed in the Treaty of Union the previous year, resulting in a political union with the Kingdom of Scotland to create the Kingdom of Great Britain. In 1801, Great Britain was united with the Kingdom of Ireland (through another Act of Union) to become the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. In 1922 the Irish Free State seceded from the United Kingdom, leading to the latter being renamed the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Read more...

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Goodison Park, the stadium used by Everton

Everton Football Club is an English football club located in the city of Liverpool. The club competes in the Premier League and have contested more seasons in the top flight of English football than any other. They are one of the top five most successful English clubs in terms of major honours, having won the League Championship nine times, the FA Cup five times and the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup once. The club's most recent major trophy was the 1995 FA Cup.When managed by David Moyes,(now Real Sociedad manager) the first team made significant progress, with three European qualifications and four top eight finishes during his six-year tenure.

Everton were founded in 1878 and have a notable rivalry with Liverpool F.C., known as the Merseyside derby. Liverpool were formed fourteen years later than Everton (in 1892) after a dispute over the rent at Anfield, Everton's old ground; since then Everton have been based at Goodison Park as a result of the split. In 2006, it was announced that the club and Knowsley Council were discussing the construction of a new 55,000 seater stadium in Kirkby. The club have a large fanbase and regularly attract large crowds, averaging over 36,000 (90% of capacity) during the 2005–06 season.

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New Forest ponies

Photo credit: Michael Rowe

Ponies owned by Commoners running free in the New Forest in southern England.


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Hugh Grant at the Berlin premiere of Music and Lyrics in 2007
Hugh John Mungo Grant (born 9 September 1960) is a Golden Globe-winning British actor and film producer. He achieved international stardom after playing the alter ego of writer-director Richard Curtis in the sleeper hit Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994). He used this breakthrough role as a frequent cinematic persona during the 1990s to deliver comic performances in mainstream films like Mickey Blue Eyes (1999) and Notting Hill (1999). He established himself, by the turn of the 21st century, as a prominent leading man skilled with a satirical comic talent. In recent years, Grant has expanded his oeuvre with critically acclaimed turns as a cad in Bridget Jones's Diary (2001), About A Boy (2002), and American Dreamz (2006).

Grant has been criticised by students of cinema for putting emphasis on nuanced mannerisms, for the predictability of his movies, and for his unwillingness to stretch as an actor. Within the film industry, he is cited as a movie star who approaches his roles like a character actor, with the ability to make acting look effortless. Hallmarks of his comic skills include a nonchalant touch of irony/sarcasm and studied physical mannerisms as well as his precisely-timed dialogue delivery and facial expressions.

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The tower of St. Paul's Church, in Brighton

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