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HISTORY OF GREAT BRITAIN

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Přidáno: 05.12.2010 11:21
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HISTORY OF GREAT BRITAIN


The original British people were the Celts. They started to settle Britain from the 10th century B.C. The Celtic priests were called druids and they worshipped many gods. The Celtic language is still alive - for example in Wales.

In 55 B.C. the Roman expedition started. Julius Caesar came and named the island as Britannia according to one tribe of Celts - the Britons. Romans built many roads, baths and also Hadrian's wall to protect themselves from the attacks from the north.

In 500 A.D. many Germanic tribes came - for example Anglos, Saxons and Jutes. The origin of English comes from them. The Vikings arrived from Scandinavia throughout the 9th century and in 1066 the Normans with William invaded from France. William of Normandy fought in 1066 in the Battle of Hastings against the British king Harold. Harold was killed and the Duke of Normandy became King William I = William the Conqueror. He brought to England the feudalism but also a new language - French. He established also a Domesday Book and he made a national survey and found out how many people, towns, villages and farms England had.

The next famous king was Henry VIII. He had 6 wifes. He established the Church of England because he wanted to divorce his first wife. The official church with the Pope refused to allow it. So Henry left the Roman Church and start a protestant English Church.

Through the reign of Henry's daughter, Elizabeth I, England prospered in many ways. She supported Sir Francis Drake who attacked the Spanish ships with gold and jewels. During her reign, the 1st British colony in USA arose. Its name was Virginia. But also cultural life flourished. It's known as the Elizabethan age. Elizabeth loved music, painting and books. The most famous writer of her age was propably William Shakespeare.

I want to mention that England was not only a monarchy. In 17th century, at the time of English Civil War, the country was governed by Oliver Cromwell and his parliament for 11 years.

Another important queen was Queen Victoria. She ruled for 64 years. At that time, Britain was the richest and most powerful country in Europe. It traded all over the world, industry was replacing agriculture and the old aristocracy lost their power. Also many schools were built. English Empire had also many colonies and some time later they were established as a British Commonwealth.
 


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