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There is no legislation mandating an official language for England,  but English is the only language used for official business.
Despite the country's relatively small size, there are many distinct regional accents , and individuals with particularly strong accents may not be easily understood everywhere in the country.
As well as English, England has two other indigenous languages , Cornish and Welsh. Cornish died out as a community language in the 18th century but is being revived,   and is now protected under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages.
When the modern border between Wales and England was established by the Laws in Wales Acts and , many Welsh-speaking communities found themselves on the English side of the border.
Welsh was spoken in Archenfield in Herefordshire into the nineteenth century,  and by natives of parts of western Shropshire until the middle of the twentieth century if not later.
State schools teach students a second language , usually French, German or Spanish. However, following the census data released by the Office for National Statistics , figures now show that Polish is the main language spoken in England after English.
In the census, The church regards itself as both Catholic and Protestant. It forms part of the Anglican Communion with the Archbishop of Canterbury acting as its symbolic worldwide head.
Since its reintroduction after the Catholic Emancipation , the Church has organised ecclesiastically on an England and Wales basis where there are 4.
A form of Protestantism known as Methodism is the third largest Christian practice and grew out of Anglicanism through John Wesley.
The patron saint of England is Saint George ; his symbolic cross is included in the flag of England, as well as in the Union Flag as part of a combination.
There are non-Christian religions practised. Jews have a history of a small minority on the island since Especially since the s, religions from the former British colonies have grown in numbers, due to immigration.
A small minority of the population practise ancient Pagan religions. Neopaganism in the United Kingdom is primarily represented by Wicca and Witchcraft religions , Druidry , and Heathenry.
According to the UK Census , there are roughly 53, people who identify as Pagan in England, [nb 5] and 3, in Wales , [nb 5] including 11, Wiccans in England and in Wales.
The Department for Education is the government department responsible for issues affecting people in England up to the age of 19, including education.
Children who are between the ages of 3 and 5 attend nursery or an Early Years Foundation Stage reception unit within a primary school.
Children between the ages of 5 and 11 attend primary school, and secondary school is attended by those aged between 11 and After finishing compulsory education, students take GCSE examinations.
Students may then opt to continue into further education for two years. Further education colleges particularly sixth form colleges often form part of a secondary school site.
A-level examinations are sat by a large number of further education students, and often form the basis of an application to university.
Although most English secondary schools are comprehensive , in some areas there are selective intake grammar schools , to which entrance is subject to passing the eleven-plus exam.
Higher education students normally attend university from age 18 onwards, where they study for an academic degree. The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills is the government department responsible for higher education in England.
Students are then able to work towards a postgraduate degree, which usually takes one year, or towards a doctorate, which takes three or more years.
Since the establishment of Bedford College London , Girton College Cambridge and Somerville College Oxford in the 19th century , women also can obtain a university degree.
Many ancient standing stone monuments were erected during the prehistoric period; amongst the best known are Stonehenge , Devil's Arrows , Rudston Monolith and Castlerigg.
Perhaps the best-known example is Hadrian's Wall stretching right across northern England. Early Medieval architecture's secular buildings were simple constructions mainly using timber with thatch for roofing.
Ecclesiastical architecture ranged from a synthesis of Hiberno — Saxon monasticism ,   to Early Christian basilica and architecture characterised by pilaster-strips, blank arcading, baluster shafts and triangular headed openings.
After the Norman conquest in various Castles in England were created so law lords could uphold their authority and in the north to protect from invasion.
Throughout the Plantagenet era, an English Gothic architecture flourished, with prime examples including the medieval cathedrals such as Canterbury Cathedral , Westminster Abbey and York Minster.
Medieval architecture was completed with the 16th-century Tudor style ; the four-centred arch, now known as the Tudor arch , was a defining feature as were wattle and daub houses domestically.
In the aftermath of the Renaissance a form of architecture echoing classical antiquity synthesised with Christianity appeared, the English Baroque style of architect Christopher Wren being particularly championed.
Georgian architecture followed in a more refined style, evoking a simple Palladian form; the Royal Crescent at Bath is one of the best examples of this.
With the emergence of romanticism during Victorian period, a Gothic Revival was launched. In addition to this, around the same time the Industrial Revolution paved the way for buildings such as The Crystal Palace.
Since the s various modernist forms have appeared whose reception is often controversial, though traditionalist resistance movements continue with support in influential places.
English folklore developed over many centuries. Some of the characters and stories are present across England, but most belong to specific regions.
Common folkloric beings include pixies , giants , elves , bogeymen , trolls , goblins and dwarves. While many legends and folk-customs are thought to be ancient, for instance the tales featuring Offa of Angel and Wayland the Smith ,  others date from after the Norman invasion; Robin Hood and his Merry Men of Sherwood and their battles with the Sheriff of Nottingham being, perhaps, the best known.
During the High Middle Ages tales originating from Brythonic traditions entered English folklore and developed into the Arthurian myth. Many of the tales and pseudo-histories make up part of the wider Matter of Britain , a collection of shared British folklore.
Some folk figures are based on semi or actual historical people whose story has been passed down centuries; Lady Godiva for instance was said to have ridden naked on horseback through Coventry , Hereward the Wake was a heroic English figure resisting the Norman invasion, Herne the Hunter is an equestrian ghost associated with Windsor Forest and Great Park and Mother Shipton is the archetypal witch.
The chivalrous bandit, such as Dick Turpin , is a recurring character, while Blackbeard is the archetypal pirate. There are various national and regional folk activities, participated in to this day, such as Morris dancing , Maypole dancing , Rapper sword in the North East, Long Sword dance in Yorkshire, Mummers Plays , bottle-kicking in Leicestershire, and cheese-rolling at Cooper's Hill.
Since the early modern period the food of England has historically been characterised by its simplicity of approach and a reliance on the high quality of natural produce.
The cuisine of England has, however, recently undergone a revival, which has been recognised by food critics with some good ratings in Restaurant ' s best restaurant in the world charts.
Traditional examples of English food include the Sunday roast , featuring a roasted joint usually beef, lamb , chicken or pork served with assorted vegetables, Yorkshire pudding and gravy.
Sausages are commonly eaten, either as bangers and mash or toad in the hole. Lancashire hotpot is a well-known stew originating in the northwest.
Many Anglo-Indian hybrid dishes, curries , have been created, such as chicken tikka masala and balti. Traditional English dessert dishes include apple pie or other fruit pies; spotted dick — all generally served with custard ; and, more recently, sticky toffee pudding.
Common non-alcoholic drinks include tea, the popularity of which was increased by Catherine of Braganza ,  and coffee; frequently consumed alcoholic drinks include wine, ciders and English beers , such as bitter , mild , stout and brown ale.
The earliest known examples are the prehistoric rock and cave art pieces, most prominent in North Yorkshire , Northumberland and Cumbria , but also feature further south, for example at Creswell Crags.
There are numerous surviving artefacts, such as those at Lullingstone and Aldborough. The Tudor era saw prominent artists as part of their court, portrait painting which would remain an enduring part of English art, was boosted by German Hans Holbein , natives such as Nicholas Hilliard built on this.
Early authors such as Bede and Alcuin wrote in Latin. Marvell was the best-known poet of the Commonwealth ,  while John Milton authored Paradise Lost during the Restoration.
More radical elements were later countered by Edmund Burke who is regarded as the founder of conservatism.
The English played a significant role in romanticism: In response to the Industrial Revolution , agrarian writers sought a way between liberty and tradition; William Cobbett , G.
Chesterton and Hilaire Belloc were main exponents, while the founder of guild socialism , Arthur Penty , and cooperative movement advocate G.
Cole are somewhat related. Wells and Lewis Carroll. Lawrence , Virginia Woolf , C. Tolkien , and J. The traditional folk music of England is centuries old and has contributed to several genres prominently; mostly sea shanties , jigs , hornpipes and dance music.
It has its own distinct variations and regional peculiarities. German-born George Frideric Handel became a British subject  and spent most of his composing life in London, creating some of the most well-known works of classical music, The Messiah , Water Music , and Music for the Royal Fireworks.
One of his four Coronation Anthems , Zadok the Priest , composed for the coronation of George II , has been performed at every subsequent British coronation , traditionally during the sovereign's anointing.
In the field of popular music , many English bands and solo artists have been cited as the most influential and best-selling musicians of all time.
Large outdoor music festivals in the summer and autumn are popular, such as Glastonbury , V Festival , and the Reading and Leeds Festivals.
Hitchcock and Lean are among the most critically acclaimed filmmakers. A Story of the London Fog , helped shape the thriller genre in film, while his film, Blackmail , is often regarded as the first British sound feature film.
Major film studios in England include Pinewood , Elstree and Shepperton. Some of the most commercially successful films of all time have been produced in England, including two of the highest-grossing film franchises Harry Potter and James Bond.
English Heritage is a governmental body with a broad remit of managing the historic sites, artefacts and environments of England.
It is currently sponsored by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. There are many museums in England, but perhaps the most notable is London's British Museum.
Its collection of more than seven million objects  is one of the largest and most comprehensive in the world,  sourced from every continent, illustrating and documenting the story of human culture from its beginning to the present.
England has a strong sporting heritage, and during the 19th century codified many sports that are now played around the world.
Sports originating in England include association football,  cricket , rugby union , rugby league , tennis , boxing , badminton, squash ,  rounders ,  hockey , snooker , billiards , darts , table tennis, bowls , netball , thoroughbred horseracing, greyhound racing and fox hunting.
It has helped the development of golf , sailing and Formula One. Football is the most popular of these sports.
The England national football team , whose home venue is Wembley Stadium , played Scotland in the first ever international football match in In the modern day, the Premier League is the world's most-watched football league,  most lucrative,  and amongst the elite.
As is the case throughout the UK, football in England is notable for the rivalries between clubs and the passion of the supporters, which includes a tradition of football chants.
Cricket is generally thought to have been developed in the early medieval period among the farming and metalworking communities of the Weald.
One of the game's top rivalries is The Ashes series between England and Australia , contested since The climax of the Ashes was viewed by 7.
However they have hosted the ICC World Twenty20 in , winning this format in beating rivals Australia in the final. William Penny Brookes was prominent in organising the format for the modern Olympic Games.
England competes in the Commonwealth Games , held every four years. Sport England is the governing body responsible for distributing funds and providing strategic guidance for sporting activity in England.
Rugby union originated in Rugby School , Warwickshire in the early 19th century. England was one of the host nations of the competition in the Rugby World Cup and also hosted the Rugby World Cup.
Rugby league was born in Huddersfield in Since , the England national rugby league team has been a full test nation in lieu of the Great Britain national rugby league team , which won three World Cups but is now retired.
Rugby League is most popular among towns in the northern English counties of Lancashire , Yorkshire and Cumbria.
Some of the most successful clubs include Wigan Warriors , Hull F. Golf has been prominent in England; due in part to its cultural and geographical ties to Scotland, the home of Golf.
England has produced grand slam winners: The world's oldest golf tournament, and golf's first major is The Open Championship , played both in England and Scotland.
The biennial golf competition, the Ryder Cup , is named after English businessman Samuel Ryder who sponsored the event and donated the trophy.
Tennis was created in Birmingham, England in the late 19th century, and the Wimbledon Championships is the oldest tennis tournament in the world, and widely considered the most prestigious.
Fred Perry was the last Englishman to win Wimbledon in He was the first player to win all four Grand Slam singles titles  and helped lead the Great Britain team to four Davis Cup wins.
English women who have won Wimbledon include: Ann Haydon Jones in and Virginia Wade in In boxing , under the Marquess of Queensberry Rules , England has produced many world champions across the weight divisions internationally recognised by the governing bodies.
Originating in 17th and 18th-century England, the thoroughbred is a horse breed best known for its use in horse racing. It is the most watched horse race in the UK, attracting casual observers, and three-time winner Red Rum is the most successful racehorse in the event's history.
England also has a rich heritage in Grand Prix motorcycle racing , the premier championship of motorcycle road racing , and produced several World Champions across all the various class of motorcycle: Darts is a widely popular sport in England; a professional competitive sport, darts is a traditional pub game.
Phil Taylor is widely regarded as the best darts player of all time, having won professional tournaments, and a record 16 World Championships. Another popular sport commonly associated with pub games is Snooker , and England has produced several world champions, including Steve Davis and Ronnie O'Sullivan.
The English are keen sailors and enjoy competitive sailing ; founding and winning some of the worlds most famous and respected international competitive tournaments across the various race formats, including the match race , a regatta, and the America's Cup.
The St George's Cross has been the national flag of England since the 13th century. Originally the flag was used by the maritime Republic of Genoa.
The English monarch paid a tribute to the Doge of Genoa from onwards so that English ships could fly the flag as a means of protection when entering the Mediterranean.
A red cross was a symbol for many Crusaders in the 12th and 13th centuries. It became associated with Saint George , along with countries and cities, which claimed him as their patron saint and used his cross as a banner.
There are numerous other symbols and symbolic artefacts, both official and unofficial, including the Tudor rose , the nation's floral emblem , and the Three Lions featured on the Royal Arms of England.
The Tudor rose was adopted as a national emblem of England around the time of the Wars of the Roses as a symbol of peace.
It is also known as the Rose of England. The Royal Arms of England, a national coat of arms featuring three lions, originated with its adoption by Richard the Lionheart in It is blazoned as gules, three lions passant guardant or and it provides one of the most prominent symbols of England; it is similar to the traditional arms of Normandy.
England does not have an official designated national anthem, as the United Kingdom as a whole has God Save the Queen.
However, the following are often considered unofficial English national anthems: St George is the patron saint of England.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. This article is about the country. For other uses, see England disambiguation.
Sovereign state Legal jurisdiction. England in the Middle Ages. East Riding of Yorkshire. Ceremonial counties of England.
List of places in England. List of English inventions and discoveries and Royal Society. English diaspora , Cornish people , and List of urban areas in the United Kingdom.
English language in England. English language , History of the English language , and Cornish language. Official, but not majority language.
History of Christianity in England. List of universities in England. Fish and chips is a very popular dish in England. Apple pie has been consumed in England since the Middle Ages.
Chicken tikka masala , , adapted from Indian chicken tikka and called "a true British national dish. This royal throne of kings, this sceptred isle, this earth of majesty, this seat of Mars, this other Eden, demi-paradise; this fortress, built by nature for herself.
This blessed plot, this earth, this realm, this England. Folk music of England. Music of the United Kingdom.
Thomas Tallis' "Lamentations I". Cinema of the United Kingdom. List of museums in England. National symbols of England. England portal United Kingdom portal.
London's municipal population is also the largest in the EU. Other Pagan paths, such as Wicca or Druidism, have not been included in this number.
Other Pagan paths, such as Druidism, and general "Pagan" have not been included in this number. Scottish students attending Scottish universities have their fees paid by the devolved Scottish Parliament.
Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 18 April Retrieved 9 August Retrieved 24 April Archived from the original on 20 December Retrieved 1 February Archived from the original on 9 February International Organization for Standardization.
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It resulted in a Church that consciously retained a large amount of continuity with the Church of the Patristic and Medieval periods in terms of its use of the catholic creeds, its pattern of ministry, its buildings and aspects of its liturgy, but which also embodied Protestant insights in its theology and in the overall shape of its liturgical practice.
The way that this is often expressed is by saying that the Church of England is both 'catholic and reformed. Archived from the original on 13 August Archived from the original on 21 July Jews and England" PDF.
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Many of the first European colonists of New England had a maritime orientation toward whaling first noted about  and fishing, in addition to farming.
New England has developed a distinct cuisine , dialect , architecture , and government. New England cuisine has a reputation for its emphasis on seafood and dairy; clam chowder , lobster, and other products of the sea are among some of the region's most popular foods.
New England has largely preserved its regional character, especially in its historic places. The enduring European influence can be seen in the region in the use of traffic rotaries , the bilingual French and English towns of northern Vermont, Maine, and New Hampshire, the region's heavy prevalence of English town- and county-names, and its unique, often non- rhotic coastal dialect reminiscent of southeastern England.
Within New England, many names of towns and a few counties repeat from state to state, primarily due to settlers throughout the region having named their new towns after their old ones.
For example, the town of North Yarmouth, Maine was named by settlers from Yarmouth, Massachusetts , which was in turn named for Great Yarmouth in England.
There are several American English accents spoken in the region normally north of Connecticut , including New England English and its derivative known as the Boston accent ,  which is native to the northeastern coastal regions of New England.
The most identifiable features of the Boston accent are believed [ by whom? Another source was 17th century speech in East Anglia and Lincolnshire where many of the Puritan immigrants originated.
The Boston accent and those accents closely related to it cover eastern Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Maine.
Some Rhode Islanders speak with a non-rhotic accent that many compare to a " Brooklyn " accent or a cross between a New York and Boston accent, where "water" becomes "wata".
Contra dancing and country square dancing are popular throughout New England, usually backed by live Irish, Acadian, or other folk music. Fife and drum corps are common, especially in southern New England and more specifically Connecticut , with music of mostly Celtic, English, and local origin.
Traditional knitting , quilting , and rug hooking circles in rural New England have become less common; church , sports, and town government are more typical social activities.
These traditional gatherings are often hosted in individual homes or civic centers. New England leads the U. New England was an important center of American classical music for some time.
Prominent modernist composers also come from the region, including Charles Ives and John Adams. Quincy, Massachusetts native Dick Dale helped popularize surf rock.
New England Cable News is the largest regional hour cable news network in the U. New Englanders are well represented in American comedy.
Writers for The Simpsons and late-night television programs often come by way of the Harvard Lampoon. SNL cast member Seth Meyers once attributed the region's imprint on American humor to its "sort of wry New England sense of pointing out anyone who's trying to make a big deal of himself", with the Boston Globe suggesting that irony and sarcasm are its trademarks, as well as Irish influences.
The literature of New England has had an enduring influence on American literature in general, with themes that are emblematic of the larger concerns of American letters, such as religion, race, the individual versus society, social repression, and nature.
Boston was the center of the American publishing industry for some years, largely on the strength of its local writers and before it was overtaken by New York in the middle of the nineteenth century.
Boston remains the home of publishers Houghton Mifflin and Pearson Education , and it was the longtime home of literary magazine The Atlantic Monthly.
Merriam-Webster is based in Springfield, Massachusetts. Higgins wrote about life in the New England criminal underworld, while H. Lovecraft set many of his works of horror in his native Rhode Island.
New England has a rich history in filmmaking dating back to the dawn of the motion picture era at the turn of the 20th century, sometimes dubbed Hollywood East by film critics.
A theater at Washington Street in Boston was the second location to debut a picture projected by the Vitascope , and shortly thereafter several novels were being adapted for the screen and set in New England, including The Scarlet Letter and The House of Seven Gables.
The New England area became known for a number of themes that recurred in films made during this era, including the development of yankee characters, smalltown life contrasted with city values, seafaring tales, family secrets, and haunted New England.
Since the turn of the millennium, Boston and the greater New England region have been home to the production of numerous films and television series, thanks in part to tax incentive programs put in place by local governments to attract filmmakers to the region.
A full list of those from Massachusetts can be found here , and a listing of notable films and television series produced in the area here. Two popular American sports were invented in New England: Morgan , in Holyoke, Massachusetts.
The major professional sports teams in New England are based in Massachusetts: Hartford had professional hockey team the Hartford Whalers from until they moved to North Carolina in New England is also home to the Worcester Blades , Boston Pride , and the Connecticut Whale which represent three of the five professional women's hockey teams in the United States.
The Springfield Armor in Springfield, Massachusetts previously played in the region. Thanksgiving Day high school football rivalries date back to the 19th century, and the Harvard-Yale rivalry " The Game " is the oldest rivalry in college football.
The Boston Marathon is run on Patriots' Day every year; it is a New England cultural institution and the oldest annual marathon in the world.
The race offers far less prize money than many other marathons, but its difficulty and long history make it one of the world's most prestigious marathons.
Amtrak provides interstate rail service throughout New England. Boston is the northern terminus of the Northeast Corridor. The long-distance Lake Shore Limited train has two eastern termini after splitting in Albany , one of which is Boston.
This provides rail service on the former Boston and Albany Railroad , which runs between its namesake cities. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
This article is about the region in North America. For other uses, see New England disambiguation.
History of New England. Geology of New England. Climate of New England. Demographics of New England. List of cities by population in New England.
Economy of New England. Town meeting and New England town. Politics of New England. Elections in New England. List of colleges and universities in Connecticut , List of colleges and universities in Maine , List of colleges and universities in Massachusetts , List of colleges and universities in New Hampshire , List of colleges and universities in Rhode Island , and List of colleges and universities in Vermont.
Cuisine of New England. Literature of New England. Sports in New England. Transportation in New England. New England portal United States portal.
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