United Kingdom, Great Britain, England, Scotland, Ireland, Wales… CONFUSED???

Categories English By JadePosted on Format Film
United Kingdom, Great Britain, England, Scotland, Ireland, Wales… CONFUSED???

The United Kingdom, Great Britain, England, or the British Isles: Which one should you use, and what’s the difference between them? And how do Ireland, Scotland, and Wales relate to all of this? It really is confusing, but in this video I will explain exactly what each name refers to, and what belongs where, so you’ll have no more confusion! We’ll also talk about the relationship of Northern Ireland to the UK, as well as the Crown dependencies – the Isle of Man, Jersey, and Guernsey. I’ll also touch upon identity issues such as the proportion of people who feel ‘British’ as opposed to just ‘English’, ‘Welsh’, ‘Scottish’, or ‘Irish’. This one is a really huge lesson, full of facts and interesting trivia about the differences between the countries that make up the United Kingdom. If you learn everything in this lesson and take the quiz at https://www.engvid.com/uk-gb-british-isles-terminology/ you will truly be an expert on the geography and people of the UK!

NEXT, watch some of my other videos about life and customs in England and the UK:
1. DRINKING TEA IN ENGLAND: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HcNAxWlFE_g&index=18&list=PL-Q2Xro-OWKe-pXnqtUKfD2Gpsbpu6Gl7

2. SHOPPING IN ENGLAND: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CF_U1LW8ap8&index=4&list=PL-Q2Xro-OWKe-pXnqtUKfD2Gpsbpu6Gl7

3. 3 POPULAR SLANG WORDS IN BRITISH ENGLISH: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z0JUlo0ETZY&index=23&list=PL-Q2Xro-OWKe-pXnqtUKfD2Gpsbpu6Gl7

4. THE BRITISH ROYAL FAMILY: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jSDoxNzFMZw


Hi, everyone. In this lesson we’re going to look at the geography of the United Kingdom and we’re also going to look at some culture related to all the different terms we use to describe Great Britain, England… All these different words, when do we use them? So we’re going to break it down and look at that.

Let’s start with the name. The official name is United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, but often we just say „UK” because it’s such a long country name, so we just say UK. I drew a map. My map is not to scale. And I tried my best, but it was hard to do it with the pens on the board, so we’re going to show you a correct map. We’ve got England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. And the dotted line shows where Northern Ireland ends. This part is part of the United Kingdom; this part is not. More on that later.

So, the UK is a sovereign state or we could say a sovereign country. This means that they make all their own laws, and they govern themselves. So, the UK is a sovereign state or a sovereign country. But the reason that’s confusing is that we… When we’re talking or when we’re describing a place in the world, we talk about Scotland, England, Wales, and Ireland as being countries. So, you think: „Is…? If the UK is a country, are Scotland, England, Wales, and Ireland also a country?” Well, they are, but they don’t make their own laws. So, we have a word for it and we can call them „constituent countries”. We can say England is a constituent country of the United Kingdom. We can say Scotland is a constituent country of the United Kingdom, etc. Okay.

Now it gets more confusing because when we’re talking about the UK, we can say it’s made up of those countries – Scotland, England, Wales, and Northern Ireland. We can also say it’s made up of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Great Britain is this land mass, this island shape, here; and Northern Ireland is part of the land mass, the island of Ireland. So, if we put this bit and this bit together, we get the United Kingdom.

Great Britain has three constituent countries. Remember, this is Great Britain, Scotland, England, and Wales make up Great Britain. Britain… Now we’re getting smaller. This is Britain, England, and Wales. So, I can say: „I’m from Britain”, because I’m from… I was born about here in London, so I can say: „I’m from Britain”.

Now, we have another term called „The British Isles”. The British Isles is a geographic term, so we use it to describe a place on the map. And the British Isles would include everything we see here. Actually, perhaps except these islands. These islands are called Jersey and Guernsey, and they’re closer to France. But the British Isles could describe everything here in a geographic sense. And I wasn’t able to draw all the islands, but there’s actually over 6,000 islands up in Scotland, some down here as well. So, many, many islands.

But the trouble with that term, to say the British Isles is that some people in Ireland don’t like that term to describe… To include them because it makes it sound like Ireland, it’s British, even though Ireland is independent. Ireland is a sovereign country by itself. So some people object to calling this the British Isles.

If you do object to calling it the British Isles, you can say the North Atlantic-I can never say this word-Archipelago. Archipelago. And this means, like, collection of islands. And the place in the world is in the North Atlantic. Right. […]