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Is England a country?

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wheeze
757118.  Tue Nov 02, 2010 9:53 am Reply with quote

Ok clever peoples.... I have had a debate going on with my friends all of whom say that England, Scotland and Wales are countries in their own right. I thought they were Kingdoms or divisions of the UK. Who's right?
There is conflicting information on the wibbly wobbly webs.[/b]

 
Spoilt Victorian
757128.  Tue Nov 02, 2010 10:10 am Reply with quote

Scotland is definitely a country, but not an INDEPENDENT country.
I suspect this area is where your confusion lies.

I have heard the argument that Wales is not a country but only a Principality. - I'll leave that argument for someone else

x

 
wheeze
757130.  Tue Nov 02, 2010 10:23 am Reply with quote

Thank you Spoilt Victorian... however, I can assure you that my confusion lies oh so much deeper than that lol!!
x

 
suze
757165.  Tue Nov 02, 2010 12:38 pm Reply with quote

As Spoilt Victorian suggests, the convention is to regard the United Kingdom as a country formed of four countries.

No, it doesn't really make sense. But it doesn't have to.

 
TashkentFox
757263.  Tue Nov 02, 2010 8:37 pm Reply with quote

England is a country in the same way Prussia and Bavaria are, in other words, not anymore.

 
samivel
757333.  Wed Nov 03, 2010 5:04 am Reply with quote

If you're from FIFA or UEFA, England is a country. If you're from the IOC, it isn't.

 
TashkentFox
758009.  Fri Nov 05, 2010 3:23 pm Reply with quote

samivel wrote:
If you're from FIFA or UEFA, England is a country. If you're from the IOC, it isn't.


International sporting organisations aren't exactly the be all and end all of what is considered a country. The United Nations is probably the most reliable guide to what is and what isn't a nation and it regards the UK as a single country, but it didn't consider the Soviet Union to be one country (hence the reason Belarus, Ukraine and Russia had seperate seats at the UN, even though they weren't independent states).

 
Spoilt Victorian
758010.  Fri Nov 05, 2010 3:49 pm Reply with quote

TashkentFox wrote:
samivel wrote:
If you're from FIFA or UEFA, England is a country. If you're from the IOC, it isn't.


International sporting organisations aren't exactly the be all and end all of what is considered a country. The United Nations is probably the most reliable guide to what is and what isn't a nation and it regards the UK as a single country, but it didn't consider the Soviet Union to be one country (hence the reason Belarus, Ukraine and Russia had seperate seats at the UN, even though they weren't independent states).


Would you regard Tibet as a country, or just a province of China?

(That's not meant to be a loaded question in any way, I'm just curious)

Personally, I would consider it a country under occupation.

 
suze
758019.  Fri Nov 05, 2010 4:42 pm Reply with quote

So would I, but unfortunately very few of the world's leaders take that position.

Canada considered Tibet a country under occupation until 1998, in which year Jean Chrétien rather shamefully allowed China and the USA to tell him to take the other view.

 
TashkentFox
758020.  Fri Nov 05, 2010 4:45 pm Reply with quote

Spoilt Victorian wrote:
Would you regard Tibet as a country, or just a province of China?

(That's not meant to be a loaded question in any way, I'm just curious)

Personally, I would consider it a country under occupation.


I consider Tibet to be a nation from a historical point of view, but in the present day a province of the PRC, especially since the cultural figurehead of Tibetan culture, the Dalai Lama, seeks autonomy rather than independence for Tibet.

 
welshwizard
758575.  Sun Nov 07, 2010 7:15 pm Reply with quote

England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are commonly referred to as countries, however none are countries. They are Internal Divisions of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
The United Kingdom is a country as it is a sovereign state. Not one of England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland is a sovereign state as they are over-ruled by the parliament of the UK. Any territory cannot be defined a country if it isn't a sovereign state.
I'd also like to point out that Wales is not a principality, as thought by many. Indeed Prince Charles holds the title "Prince of Wales", however he has no law making powers and has no rights to govern Wales, therefore Wales is not a principality.

 
bobwilson
758601.  Mon Nov 08, 2010 12:12 am Reply with quote

Quote:
The United Nations is probably the most reliable guide to what is and what isn't a nation


I disagree - the most reliable guide is the bloke with the gun what is bigger than your mates gun. The UN is certainly A guide but not THE guide to what constitutes a country. As samivel says - it depends on context and the arbitrary decisions of whoever you want to believe.

My own personal definition is that a country is any space that restricts the entry of starlings and other flying creatures by checking their passports. As I am not aware of any restrictions on such flying creatures, and as I consider myself to be at least their intellectual equals (some may argue) I see no reason to recognise any national boundaries except when it suits me to do so.

 
bobwilson
758602.  Mon Nov 08, 2010 12:15 am Reply with quote

Quote:
I'd also like to point out that Wales is not a principality, as thought by many. Indeed Prince Charles holds the title "Prince of Wales", however he has no law making powers and has no rights to govern Wales, therefore Wales is not a principality.


I'd like to point out that the UK is not a Kingdom as thought by many. ER has no law making powers and has no rights to govern the UK, therefore the UK is not a kingdom.

 
djgordy
758644.  Mon Nov 08, 2010 6:09 am Reply with quote

Wales was a principality between 1216 and 1542, ruled over by the Prince of Wales. It was, however, part of the Angevin Empire and so the Prince owed fealty to the English crown. The first Prince of Wales was Owain I and the last Owain IV. The English monarchy bestowed the title Prince of Wales on the oldest son of the monarch from 1301 and only recognised Dafydd I and Dafydd II from the Welsh list.

The Principality of Wales only covered about 2/3 of the modern pretend country of Wales.

Many modern countries, such as Germany and Italy, are made up of previously independent countries so why the British have to persevere with this ludicrous notion that Wales, Scotland and the occupied part of Ireland are "countries" is beyond me. Oh, I know the reason; it means that politicians can have pretend jobs in parliaments and assemblies of countries that don't exist and thus get paid for doing nothing.

 
welshwizard
758894.  Mon Nov 08, 2010 9:32 pm Reply with quote

Get paid for doing nothing? I'm sorry, but I disagree with you on that point entirely. They might not be countries, but Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland are Nations, defined as a collective group/area where people that shale the same national identity. I'd argue that the National Parliament/assemblies of Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales do a great deal to preserve the national identity of these nations, and as such, do not have "pretend jobs" and do not "get paid for doing nothing" as you put it. They also pass great laws that benefit the people of that nation, such as free prescriptions in Wales, no tuition fees for scottish students and so forth. I personally think that it is a shame that England does not have its own devolved parliament/assembly, as this would solely benefit the nation of England, not the whole of the UK as the current system does.

In reply to bobwilson's post, I must admit that I do not know a great deal on this matter and I could very well be wrong in saying the following, however Wikipedia (I know that a lot of people dislike is, but i find it mostly accurate) states that a kingdom is a sovereign state instituting a monarchy, or having a monarch at it's head. Also, certain laws proposed by parliament still need royal assent, thus giving the Queen a major role in deciding if the law is passed or not. Surely this makes the UK a kingdom?
[/quote]

 

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