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The Kingdom of England (
Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', meaning "to share" or "to be in relation with") is "an appa ...

Latin
: ''Regnum Anglorum'', "Kingdom of the English") was a
sovereign state A sovereign state is a polity, political entity represented by one centralized government that has sovereignty over a geographic area. International law defines sovereign states as having a permanent population, defined territory, one government ...
on the island of
Great Britain Great Britain is an island in the North Atlantic Ocean off the northwest coast of continental Europe. With an area of , it is the largest of the British Isles, the List of European islands by area, largest European island, and the List of i ...

Great Britain
from 12 July 927, when it emerged from various
Anglo-Saxon The Anglo-Saxons were a who inhabited . They traced their origins to the 5th century settlement of incomers to Britain, who migrated to the island from the coastlands of . However, the of the Anglo-Saxons occurred within Britain, and the ide ...
kingdoms, until 1 May 1707, when it united with
Scotland Scotland ( sco, Scotland, gd, Alba Alba (Scottish Gaelic Scottish Gaelic ( gd, Gàidhlig or Scots Gaelic, sometimes referred to simply as Gaelic) is a Goidelic language (in the Celtic languages, Celtic branch of the Indo-European ...
to form the
Kingdom of Great Britain The Kingdom of Great Britain, officially called Great Britain,"After the political union of England and Scotland in 1707, the nation's official name became 'Great Britain'", ''The American Pageant, Volume 1'', Cengage Learning (2012) was a s ...

Kingdom of Great Britain
. The Kingdom of England was among the most powerful states in Europe during the medieval period. On 12 July 927, the various Anglo-Saxon kingdoms were united by
Æthelstan Æthelstan or Athelstan (; ang, Æðelstān ; on, Aðalsteinn; meaning "noble stone"; 894 – 27 October 939) was List of monarchs of Wessex, King of the Anglo-Saxons from 924 to 927 and List of English monarchs, King of the English from 927 ...
(r. 927–939) to form the Kingdom of England. In 1016, the kingdom became part of the
North Sea Empire North Sea Empire and Anglo-Scandinavian Empire are terms used by historians to refer to the personal union A personal union is the combination of two or more State (polity), states that have the same monarch while their boundaries, laws, and ...
of
Cnut the Great Cnut the Great (; ang, Cnut cyning; non, Knútr inn ríki ; or , no, Knut den mektige, sv, Knut den Store. died 12 November 1035), also known as Canute, was King of England This list of kings and queens of the Kingdom of England Th ...
, a personal union between England, Denmark and Norway. The
Norman conquest of England The Norman Conquest (or the Conquest) was the 11th-century invasion and occupation of England England is a Countries of the United Kingdom, country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Wales to its west and ...
in 1066 led to the transfer of the English capital city and chief royal residence from the Anglo-Saxon one at
Winchester Winchester is a cathedral city A city is a large .Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The Social Science Encyclopedia''. 2nd edition. London: Routledge. It ...

Winchester
to
Westminster Westminster is a district in , part of the wider . The area, which extends from the to has many , including the , , , and much of the shopping and entertainment district. The name ( ang, Westmynstre) originated from the informal descript ...

Westminster
, and the
City of London The City of London is a City status in the United Kingdom, city, Ceremonial counties of England, ceremonial county and local government district that contains the historic centre and the primary central business district (CBD) of London. It c ...

City of London
quickly established itself as England's largest and principal commercial centre. Histories of the kingdom of England from the
Norman conquest The Norman Conquest (or the Conquest) was the 11th-century invasion and occupation of England by an army made up of thousands of Normans, Duchy of Brittany, Bretons, County of Flanders, Flemish, and men from other Kingdom of France, French ...
of 1066 conventionally distinguish periods named after successive ruling dynasties:
Norman Norman or Normans may refer to: Ethnic and cultural identity * The Normans The Normans (Norman language, Norman: ''Normaunds''; french: Normands; la, Nortmanni/Normanni) were inhabitants of the early medieval Duchy of Normandy, descended from ...
1066–1154,
Plantagenet The House of Plantagenet () was a royal house which originated from the lands of Anjou in France. The name Plantagenet is used by modern historians to identify four distinct royal houses: the Angevins, who were also counts of Anjou; the ma ...
1154–1485,
Tudor Tudor most commonly refers to: * House of Tudor, English royal house of Welsh origins ** Tudor period, a historical era in England coinciding with the rule of the Tudor dynasty Tudor may also refer to: Architecture * Tudor architecture, the fi ...
1485–1603 and Stuart 1603–1707 (interrupted by the
Interregnum An interregnum (plural interregna or interregnums) is a period of discontinuity or "gap" in a government, organization, or social order. Archetypally, it was the period of time between the reign of one monarch and the next (coming from Latin ''i ...
of 1649–1660). Dynastically, all
English monarchs This list of kings and queens of the Kingdom of England The Kingdom of England was a sovereign state on the island of Great Britain from 12 July 927, when it emerged from various History of Anglo-Saxon England, Anglo-Saxon kingdoms, unti ...
after 1066 ultimately claim descent from the Normans; the distinction of the
Plantagenets The House of Plantagenet () was a Dynasty, royal house which originated from the lands of County of Anjou, Anjou in France. The family held the English throne from 1154 (with the accession of Henry II of England, Henry II, at the end of The An ...
is merely conventional, beginning with
Henry II Henry II may refer to: Kings *Henry II of England (1133–89), reigned from 1154 *Henry II of Jerusalem and Cyprus (1271–1324), reigned from 1285; king of Jerusalem in name only from 1291 *Henry II of Castile (1334–79), reigned 1366–67 and ...

Henry II
(reigned 1154–1189) as from that time, the Angevin kings became "more English in nature"; the houses of
LancasterLancaster may refer to: Lands and titles *The County Palatine of Lancaster, a synonym for Lancashire *Duchy of Lancaster, one of only two British royal duchies *Duke of Lancaster *Earl of Lancaster *House of Lancaster, a British royal dynasty ...
and
York York is a cathedral city City status in the United Kingdom is granted by the monarch of the United Kingdom The monarchy of the United Kingdom, commonly referred to as the British monarchy, is the constitutional monarchy of the United ...
are both Plantagenet cadet branches, the
Tudor dynasty The House of Tudor was an English royal house of Welsh origin, descended from the Tudors of Penmynydd. Tudor monarchs ruled the Kingdom of England The Kingdom of England was a sovereign state on the island of Great Britain from 12 July ...
claimed descent from
Edward III Edward III (13 November 131221 June 1377), also known as Edward of Windsor before his accession, was King of England and Lord of Ireland from January 1327 until his death in 1377. He is noted for his military success and for restoring royal aut ...

Edward III
via John Beaufort and
James VI and I James VI and I (James Charles Stuart; 19 June 1566 – 27 March 1625) was King of Scotland The monarchy of the United Kingdom, commonly referred to as the British monarchy, is the constitutional monarchy, constitutional form of gover ...

James VI and I
of the
House of Stuart The House of Stuart, originally Stewart, was a royal house A dynasty (, ) is a sequence of rulers from the same family,''Oxford English Dictionary'', "dynasty, ''n''." Oxford University Press Oxford University Press (OUP) is t ...

House of Stuart
claimed descent from
Henry VIIHenry VII may refer to: * Henry VII of England (1457–1509), King of England and Lord of Ireland from 1485 until his death in 1509; the founder of the House of Tudor * Henry VII, Duke of Bavaria (died 1047), count of Luxembourg (as Henry II) from 1 ...
via
Margaret Tudor Margaret Tudor (28 November 1489 – 18 October 1541) was Queen consort of Scotland from 1503 until 1513 by marriage to James IV of Scotland and then, after her husband died fighting the English, she became regent for their son James V of Scotla ...

Margaret Tudor
. Following the conquest of England, the Normans gradually sought to extend their conquests both to the remainder of the British Isles, Ireland and additional lands on the Continent, particularly in modern-day France. Over time, this would evolve into a long-standing policy of expansionism pursued intermittently with steadily increasing levels of aggression by successive, now-styled "English", dynasties. Beginning in the 12th century, the Normans began making serious incursions into Ireland. The completion of the
conquest of Wales by Edward I The conquest of Wales by Edward I, sometimes referred to as the Edwardian Conquest of Wales,Examples of historians using the term include Professor J. E. Lloyd, regarded as the founder of the modern academic study of Welsh history, in his ''Hist ...
in 1284 put Wales under the control of the English crown, although Edward's attempts to completely subjugate Ireland met with very limited success while the initial success of his conquest of Scotland was undone by English military defeat under his son, Edward II. Edward III (reigned 1327–1377) transformed the Kingdom of England into one of the most formidable military powers in Europe; his reign also saw vital developments in legislation and government—in particular the evolution of the
English parliament The Parliament of England was the legislature A legislature is an assembly Assembly may refer to: Organisations and meetings * Deliberative assembly A deliberative assembly is a gathering of members (of any kind of collective) who u ...
. From the 1340s the kings of England also laid claim to the crown of
France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a List of transcontinental countries, transcontinental country spanning Western Europe and Overseas France, overseas regions and territories in the Ame ...
, but after the
Hundred Years' War The Hundred Years’ War (french: link=yes, La guerre de Cent Ans; 1337–1453) was a series of armed conflicts between the kingdoms of and during the . It originated from disputed claims to the between the English and the French roy ...
the English lost all their land on the continent, except for
Calais Calais ( , , traditionally , ; pcd, Calés; vls, Kales) is a city A city is a large .Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The Social Science Encyclopedia ...
. The subsequent outbreak of the
Wars of the Roses The Wars of the Roses were a series of fifteenth-century English civil wars for control of the throne of England, fought between supporters of two rival cadet branches of the royal House of Plantagenet: the House of Lancaster, represented by a ...
in 1455 would ensure the English were never again in a position to seriously pursue their French claims. After the turmoil of the Wars of the Roses, the
Tudor dynasty The House of Tudor was an English royal house of Welsh origin, descended from the Tudors of Penmynydd. Tudor monarchs ruled the Kingdom of England The Kingdom of England was a sovereign state on the island of Great Britain from 12 July ...
ruled during the
English Renaissance The English Renaissance was a cultural Culture () is an umbrella term which encompasses the social behavior and Norm (social), norms found in human Society, societies, as well as the knowledge, beliefs, arts, laws, Social norm, customs, cap ...
and again extended English monarchical power beyond England proper, in particular achieving the full union of England and the
Principality of Wales The Principality of Wales ( cy, Tywysogaeth Cymru) existed between 1216 and 1536, encompassing two-thirds of modern Wales Wales ( cy, Cymru ) is a country A country is a distinct territory, territorial body or political entity. It i ...

Principality of Wales
in 1542. The Tudors also secured English control of Ireland, although it would continue to be ruled as a
separate kingdom
separate kingdom
in
personal union A personal union is the combination of two or more states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The Stat ...

personal union
with England for centuries.
Henry VIII Henry VIII (28 June 149128 January 1547) was King of England This list of kings and queens of the Kingdom of England The Kingdom of England was a sovereign state on the island of Great Britain from 12 July 927, when it emerged fro ...

Henry VIII
triggered the
English Reformation The English Reformation took place in 16th-century England The Tudor period occurred between 1485 and 1603 in History of England, England and Wales and includes the Elizabethan period during the reign of Elizabeth I until 1603. The Tudor pe ...
by breaking communion between the
Church of England The Church of England (C of E) is a Christian church Christian Church is a Protestant Protestantism is a form of Christianity that originated with the 16th-century Reformation, a movement against what its followers perceived to be Critic ...
and the
Roman Catholic Church The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with 1.3 billion baptised Baptism (from the Greek language, Greek noun βάπτισμα ''báptisma'') is a Christians, Christian ...

Roman Catholic Church
, although the doctrinal aspects of the Reformation which established the English Church as being recognizably Protestant would not be pursued in earnest until the brief reign of his young son
Edward VI Edward VI (12 October 1537 – 6 July 1553) was King of England This list of kings and queens of the Kingdom of England The Kingdom of England was a sovereign state on the island of Great Britain from 12 July 927, when it emerged fr ...

Edward VI
. Following a return to Catholicism under the similarly brief reign of Henry's eldest daughter
Mary I Mary I (18 February 1516 – 17 November 1558), also known as Mary Tudor, and as "Bloody Mary" by her Protestant Protestantism is a form of that originated with the 16th-century , a movement against what its followers perceived to ...
, Mary's half-sister
Elizabeth I Elizabeth I (7 September 153324 March 1603) was Queen of England and Ireland Ireland ( ; ga, Éire ; Ulster-Scots: ) is an island upright=1.15, Great_Britain.html"_;"title="Ireland_(left)_and_Great_Britain">Ireland_(left)_an ...

Elizabeth I
(reigned 1558–1603) re-established Protestantism under the terms of the
Elizabethan Religious Settlement The Elizabethan Religious Settlement is the name given to the religious and political arrangements made for England during the reign of Elizabeth I (1558–1603) that brought the English Reformation to a conclusion. The Settlement shaped the An ...
, meanwhile establishing England as a great power and laying the foundations of the
British Empire The British Empire was composed of the dominions, Crown colony, colonies, protectorates, League of Nations mandate, mandates, and other Dependent territory, territories ruled or administered by the United Kingdom and its predecessor states. ...

British Empire
by claiming possessions in the
New World The "New World" is a term for the majority of Earth Earth is the third planet from the Sun and the only astronomical object known to harbour and support life. 29.2% of Earth's surface is land consisting of continents and islands. The re ...
. While Henry also pursued an aggressive foreign policy north of the border in an attempt to subjugate Scotland, Elizabeth adopted a much more conciliatory position especially in light of developments such as Scotland's own Reformation and the eventual certainty that the Scottish monarch would succeed Elizabeth. From the accession of
James VI and I James VI and I (James Charles Stuart; 19 June 1566 – 27 March 1625) was King of Scotland The monarchy of the United Kingdom, commonly referred to as the British monarchy, is the constitutional monarchy, constitutional form of gover ...

James VI and I
in 1603, the
Stuart dynasty The House of Stuart, originally Stewart, was a dynasty, royal house of Kingdom of Scotland, Scotland, Kingdom of England, England, Kingdom of Ireland, Ireland and later Kingdom of Great Britain, Great Britain. The family name comes from the off ...
ruled England and Ireland in
personal union A personal union is the combination of two or more states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The Stat ...
with
Scotland Scotland ( sco, Scotland, gd, Alba Alba (Scottish Gaelic Scottish Gaelic ( gd, Gàidhlig or Scots Gaelic, sometimes referred to simply as Gaelic) is a Goidelic language (in the Celtic languages, Celtic branch of the Indo-European ...
. Under the Stuarts, the kingdom plunged into
civil war A civil war, also known as an intrastate war in polemology, is a war between organized groups within the same Sovereign state, state (or country). The aim of one side may be to take control of the country or a region, to achieve independen ...
, which culminated in the
execution of Charles I The execution of Charles I by beheading occurred on Tuesday 30 January 1649 outside the Banqueting House in Whitehall Whitehall is a road and area in the City of Westminster, Central London. The road forms the first part of the A roads in Zo ...
in 1649. The monarchy returned in 1660, but the Civil War had established the precedent that an English monarch cannot govern without the consent of Parliament. This concept became legally established as part of the
Glorious Revolution The Glorious Revolution of November 1688 ( ga, An Réabhlóid Ghlórmhar; gd, Rèabhlaid Ghlòrmhor; cy, Chwyldro Gogoneddus), the invasion also known as the ''Glorieuze Overtocht'' or Glorious Crossing by the Dutch, was the deposition of ...
of 1688. From this time the kingdom of England, as well as its successor states the
Kingdom of Great Britain The Kingdom of Great Britain, officially called Great Britain,"After the political union of England and Scotland in 1707, the nation's official name became 'Great Britain'", ''The American Pageant, Volume 1'', Cengage Learning (2012) was a s ...

Kingdom of Great Britain
and the United Kingdom, have functioned in effect as a
constitutional monarchy A constitutional monarchy, parliamentary monarchy, or democratic monarchy is a form of monarchy in which the monarch exercises his authority in accordance with a constitution and is not alone in deciding. Constitutional monarchies differ from ...
.The
Constitution of the United Kingdom The Constitution of the United Kingdom or British constitution comprises the written and unwritten arrangements that establish the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ire ...
, with the reservation that it is " uncodified", is taken to be based in the
Bill of Rights 1689 The Bill of Rights 1689, also known as the Bill of Rights 1688, is a landmark Act in the constitutional law The principles from the French Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen still have constitutional importance Constitutiona ...
.
On 1 May 1707, under the terms of the
Acts of Union 1707 The Acts of Union ( gd, Achd an Aonaidh) were two Acts of Parliament Acts of parliament, sometimes referred to as primary legislation In parliamentary systems and presidential systems of government, primary legislation and secondary legisl ...
, the kingdoms of England and Scotland united to form the aforementioned Kingdom of Great Britain.


Name

The Anglo-Saxons referred to themselves as the ''Engle'' or the ''Angelcynn'', originally names of the
Angles The Angles ( ang, Ængle, ; la, Angli; german: Angeln) were one of the main Germanic peoples The Germanic peoples were a historical group of people living in Central Europe and Scandinavia. Since the 19th century, they have traditionally ...

Angles
. They called their land ''Engla land'', meaning "land of the English", by Æthelweard Latinized ''Anglia'', from an original ''
Anglia vetus
Anglia vetus
'', the purported homeland of the Angles (called ''Angulus'' by
Bede Bede ( ; ang, Bǣda , ; 672/326 May 735), also known as Saint Bede, The Venerable Bede, and Bede the Venerable ( la, Beda Venerabilis), was an English Benedictine The Benedictines, officially the Order of Saint Benedict ( la, Ordo Sanc ...

Bede
). The name ''Engla land'' became ''England'' by
haplology Haplology (from Greek "simple" and , "speech") is defined as the elimination of an entire syllable A syllable is a unit of organization for a sequence of speech sounds. It is typically made up of a syllable nucleus (most often a vowel A ...
during the
Middle English Middle English (abbreviated to ME) was a form of the English language spoken after the Norman conquest of England, Norman conquest (1066) until the late 15th century. The English language underwent distinct variations and developments following ...
period (''Engle-land'', ''Engelond''). The
Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', meaning "to share" or "to be in relation with") is "an appa ...
name was ''Anglia'' or ''Anglorum terra'', the
Old French Old French (, , ; Modern French French ( or ) is a Romance language The Romance languages, less commonly Latin or Neo-Latin languages, are the modern languages that evolved from Vulgar Latin Vulgar Latin, also known as Popular o ...
and
Anglo-NormanAnglo-Norman may refer to: *Anglo-Normans The Anglo-Normans ( nrf, Anglo-Normaunds, ang, Engel-Norðmandisca) were the medieval ruling class in England, composed mainly of a combination of ethnic Anglo-Saxons, Normans, Bretons, Flemish people, F ...
one ''Engleterre''. By the 14th century, ''England'' was also used in reference to the entire island of Great Britain. The standard title for monarchs from
Æthelstan Æthelstan or Athelstan (; ang, Æðelstān ; on, Aðalsteinn; meaning "noble stone"; 894 – 27 October 939) was List of monarchs of Wessex, King of the Anglo-Saxons from 924 to 927 and List of English monarchs, King of the English from 927 ...
until
John John is a common English name and surname: * John (given name) John is a common English name and surname: * John (given name) * John (surname), including a list of people who have the name John John may also refer to: New Testament Works ...

John
was ' ("King of the English").
Canute the Great Cnut the Great (; ang, Cnut cyning; non, Knútr inn ríki; or , no, Knut den mektige, sv, Knut den Store. died 12 November 1035), also known as Canute, was King of Denmark, King of England, England and King of Norway, Norway, often referred t ...
, a Dane, was the first to call himself "King of England". In the
Norman period The Norman Conquest (or the Conquest) was the 11th-century invasion and occupation of England by an army made up of thousands of Normans, Duchy of Brittany, Bretons, County of Flanders, Flemish, and men from other Kingdom of France, French p ...
' remained standard, with occasional use of ' ("King of England"). From John's reign onwards all other titles were eschewed in favour of ' or '. In 1604
James I James VI and I (James Charles Stuart; 19 June 1566 – 27 March 1625) was King of Scotland as James VI from 24 July 1567 and King of England and King of Ireland, Ireland as James I from the Union of the Crowns, union of the Scottish and En ...

James I
, who had inherited the English throne the previous year, adopted the title (now usually rendered in English rather than Latin) ''King of Great Britain''. The English and Scottish parliaments, however, did not recognise this title until the Acts of Union of 1707.


History


Anglo-Saxon England

The kingdom of England emerged from the gradual unification of the early medieval
Anglo-Saxon kingdoms The Heptarchy is a collective name applied to the seven king King is the title given to a male in a variety of contexts. The female equivalent is , which title is also given to the of a king. *In the context of prehistory, antiqui ...
known as the
Heptarchy 250px, The penultimate set of Anglo-Saxon Kingdoms was fivefold. The map annotates the names of the peoples of Essex and Sussex taken into the Kingdom of Wessex, (which later took in the Kingdom of Kent and became the senior dynasty) and the out ...

Heptarchy
:
East Anglia East Anglia is a geographical area in the East of England. The area included has varied but the legally defined Nomenclature of Territorial Units for Statistics, NUTS statistical unit comprises the counties of Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridgeshi ...
,
Mercia Mercia (, ang, Miercna rīċe; la, Merciorum regnum) was one of the kingdoms of the . The name is a of the or (West Saxon dialect; in the Mercian dialect itself), meaning "border people" (see ). Mercia dominated what would later become ...

Mercia
,
Northumbria Northumbria (; ang, Norþanhymbra Rīċe; la, Regnum Northanhymbrorum) was an early medieval Anglo-Saxons, Anglo-Saxon Heptarchy, kingdom in what is now Northern England and Lothian, south-east Scotland. The name derives from the Old Englis ...

Northumbria
,
Kent Kent is a county A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposesChambers Dictionary The ''Chambers Dictionary'' (''TCD'') was first published by William Chambers (publisher), William and Robert ...

Kent
,
Essex Essex () is a county A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposesChambers Dictionary The ''Chambers Dictionary'' (''TCD'') was first published by William Chambers (publisher), William and Ro ...
,
Sussex Sussex (), from the Old English Old English (, ), or Anglo-Saxon, is the earliest recorded form of the English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, e ...
, and
Wessex Wessex (; ang, Westseaxna rīċe , 'the Kingdom of the West Saxons') was an Anglo-Saxons, Anglo-Saxon Heptarchy, kingdom in the south of Great Britain, from 519 until England was Kingdom of England, unified by Æthelstan in 927. The Anglo-Sa ...
. The Viking invasions of the 9th century upset the balance of power between the English kingdoms, and native Anglo-Saxon life in general. The English lands were unified in the 10th century in a reconquest completed by King Æthelstan in A.D. 927. During the Heptarchy, the most powerful king among the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms might become acknowledged as
Bretwalda ''Bretwalda'' (also ''brytenwalda'' and ''bretenanwealda'', sometimes capitalised) is an Old English Old English (, ), or Anglo-Saxon, is the earliest recorded form of the English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germ ...

Bretwalda
, a
high king A high king is a king of the King of the Romans (variant used in the early modern period) File:Nezahualpiltzintli.jpg">Aztec King Nezahualpiltzintli of Texcoco King is the title given to a male monarch in a variety of contexts. The ...

high king
over the other kings. The decline of Mercia allowed Wessex to become more powerful, absorbing the kingdoms of Kent and Sussex in 825. The kings of Wessex increasingly dominated the other kingdoms of England during the 9th century. In 827, Northumbria submitted to
Egbert of Wessex Ecgberht (770/775 – 839), also spelled Egbert, Ecgbert, Ecgbriht and Ecgbeorht or Ecbert, was King of Wessex This is a list of monarchs of Wessex Wessex (; ang, Westseaxna rīċe , 'the Kingdom of the West Saxons') was an Anglo-S ...

Egbert of Wessex
at Dore, briefly making Egbert the first king to reign over a united England. In 886,
Alfred the Great Alfred the Great (848/49 – 26 October 899) was king of the West Saxons This is a list of monarchs of Wessex until 886 AD. For later monarchs, see the List of English monarchs. While the details of the later monarchs are confirmed by a numbe ...

Alfred the Great
retook London, which he apparently regarded as a turning point in his reign. The ''
Anglo-Saxon Chronicle The ''Anglo-Saxon Chronicle'' is a collection of annals in Old English Old English (, ), or Anglo-Saxon, is the earliest recorded form of the English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoke ...
'' says that "all of the English people (''all Angelcyn'') not subject to the Danes submitted themselves to King Alfred."The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle
Freely licensed version at Gutenberg Project. Note: This electronic edition is a collation of material from nine diverse extant versions of the Chronicle. It contains primarily the translation of Rev. James Ingram, as published in the Everyman edition.
Asser added that "Alfred, king of the Anglo-Saxons, restored the
city of London The City of London is a City status in the United Kingdom, city, Ceremonial counties of England, ceremonial county and local government district that contains the historic centre and the primary central business district (CBD) of London. It c ...

city of London
splendidly ... and made it habitable once more." Alfred's "restoration" entailed reoccupying and refurbishing the nearly deserted Roman walled city, building
quays A wharf, quay (, also ), or staith(e) is a structure on the shore of a harbour or on the bank of a river or canal where ships may dock to load and unload cargo or passengers. Such a structure includes one or more Berth (moorings), berths (Moorin ...

quays
along the
Thames The River Thames ( ), known alternatively in parts as the River Isis, is a river that flows through southern England Southern England, or the South of England, also known as the South, is an area of England consisting of the southernmos ...

Thames
, and laying a new city street plan. It is probably at this point that Alfred assumed the new royal style 'King of the Anglo-Saxons.' During the following years Northumbria repeatedly changed hands between the English kings and the Norwegian invaders, but was definitively brought under English control by
Eadred Eadred (also Edred, 'the Weak-in-the-Feet') (923 – 23 November 955) was King of the English This list of kings and queens of the Kingdom of England begins with Alfred the Great, who initially ruled Kingdom of Wessex, Wessex, one of th ...

Eadred
in 954, completing the unification of England. At about this time,
Lothian Lothian (; sco, Lowden, Loudan, -en, -o(u)n; gd, Lodainn ) is a region of the Scottish Lowlands The Lowlands ( sco, Lallans or ; gd, a' Ghalldachd, , place of the foreigners, ) is a cultural and historical region of Scotland. Culturally, ...

Lothian
, bordering the northern portion of Northumbria (
Bernicia Bernicia (Old English Old English (, ), or Anglo-Saxon, is the earliest recorded form of the English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, early medieval ...
), was ceded to the
Kingdom of Scotland The Kingdom of Scotland ( gd, Rìoghachd na h-Alba; sco, Kinrick o Scotland) was a sovereign state A sovereign state is a polity, political entity represented by one centralized government that has sovereignty over a geographic area. Inte ...
. On 12 July 927 the monarchs of Britain gathered at Eamont in Cumbria to recognise Æthelstan as king of the English. This can be considered England's 'foundation date', although the process of unification had taken almost 100 years. England has remained in political unity ever since. During the reign of
Æthelred the Unready Æthelred (Old English: ''Æþelræd'', ;Different spellings of this king’s name most commonly found in modern texts are "Ethelred" and "Æthelred" (or "Aethelred"), the latter being closer to the original Old English language, Old English fo ...
(978–1016), a new wave of Danish invasions was orchestrated by
Sweyn I of Denmark Sweyn Forkbeard (; Old Norse: ''Sveinn Haraldsson tjúguskegg''; Danish language, Danish: ''Svend Tveskæg''; c. 960 – 3 February 1014) was List of Danish monarchs, king of Denmark from 986 to 1014. He was the father of King Harald II of Denm ...
, culminating after a quarter-century of warfare in the Danish conquest of England in 1013. But Sweyn died on 2 February 1014, and Æthelred was restored to the throne. In 1015, Sweyn's son
Cnut the Great Cnut the Great (; ang, Cnut cyning; non, Knútr inn ríki ; or , no, Knut den mektige, sv, Knut den Store. died 12 November 1035), also known as Canute, was King of England This list of kings and queens of the Kingdom of England Th ...
(commonly known as Canute) launched a new invasion. The ensuing war ended with an agreement in 1016 between Canute and Æthelred's successor,
Edmund Ironside Edmund Ironside (30 November 1016; , ; sometimes also known as Edmund II) was King of the English This list of kings and queens of the Kingdom of England begins with Alfred the Great, who initially ruled Kingdom of Wessex, Wessex, one of t ...

Edmund Ironside
, to divide England between them, but Edmund's death on 30 November of that year left England united under Danish rule. This continued for 26 years until the death of
Harthacnut Harthacnut ( da, Hardeknud; "Tough-knot";  – 8 June 1042), sometimes referred to as Canute III, was King of Denmark The Monarchy of Denmark is a constitutional political system, institution and a historic office of the Kingdom of ...
in June 1042. He was the son of Canute and
Emma of Normandy Emma of Normandy (referred to as Ælfgifu in royal documents; c. 984 – 6 March 1052) was List of English royal consorts, Queen of England, List of Danish consorts, Denmark and List of Norwegian consorts, Norway through her marriages to Æthelred ...
(the widow of Æthelred the Unready) and had no heirs of his own; he was succeeded by his half-brother, Æthelred's son,
Edward the Confessor Edward the Confessor ( ang, Ēadƿeard Andettere ; la, Eduardus Confessor , ; 1003 – 5 January 1066) was one of the last Anglo-Saxon The Anglo-Saxons were a cultural group Culture () is an umbrella term which encompasses the so ...

Edward the Confessor
. The Kingdom of England was once again independent.


Norman conquest

The peace lasted until the death of the childless Edward in January 1066. His brother-in-law was crowned King Harold, but his cousin
William the Conqueror William I (c. 1028Bates ''William the Conqueror'' p. 33 – 9 September 1087), usually known as William the Conqueror and sometimes William the Bastard, was the first Norman Norman or Normans may refer to: Ethnic and cultural identi ...

William the Conqueror
, Duke of Normandy, immediately claimed the throne for himself. William launched an invasion of England and landed in
Sussex Sussex (), from the Old English Old English (, ), or Anglo-Saxon, is the earliest recorded form of the English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, e ...

Sussex
on 28 September 1066. Harold and his army were in
York York is a cathedral city City status in the United Kingdom is granted by the monarch of the United Kingdom The monarchy of the United Kingdom, commonly referred to as the British monarchy, is the constitutional monarchy of the United ...

York
following their victory against the Norwegians at the
Battle of Stamford Bridge The Battle of Stamford Bridge ( ang, Gefeoht æt Stanfordbrycge) took place at the village of Stamford Bridge, East Riding of Yorkshire Stamford Bridge is a village and civil parishes in England, civil parish on the River Derwent, Yorkshire, ...
(25 September 1066) when the news reached him. He decided to set out without delay and confront the Norman army in Sussex so marched southwards at once, despite the army not being properly rested following the battle with the Norwegians. The armies of Harold and William faced each other at the
Battle of Hastings The Battle of Hastings or nrf, Batâle dé Hastings was fought on 14 October 1066 between the Norman-French army of William, the Duke of Normandy, and an English army under the Anglo-Saxon The Anglo-Saxons were a cultural group Cu ...

Battle of Hastings
(14 October 1066), in which the English army, or ''
Fyrd A fyrd () was a type of early Anglo-Saxon The Anglo-Saxons were a who inhabited . They traced their origins to the 5th century settlement of incomers to Britain, who migrated to the island from the coastlands of . However, the of the Angl ...
'', was defeated, Harold and his two brothers were slain, and William emerged as victor. William was then able to conquer England with little further opposition. He was not, however, planning to absorb the Kingdom into the
Duchy of Normandy The Duchy of Normandy grew out of the 911 Treaty of Saint-Clair-sur-Epte A treaty is a formal, legally binding written agreement between actors in international law. It is usually entered into by sovereign states and international organizati ...

Duchy of Normandy
. As a mere duke, William owed allegiance to
Philip I of France Philip I (23 May 1052 – 29 July 1108), called the Amorous, was List of French monarchs, King of the Franks from 1060 to 1108. His reign, like that of most of the early House of Capet, Capetians, was extraordinarily long for the time. The monarchy ...

Philip I of France
, whereas in the independent Kingdom of England he could rule without interference. He was crowned on 25 December 1066 in
Westminster Abbey Westminster Abbey, formally titled the Collegiate Church of Saint Peter at Westminster, is a large, mainly Gothic Gothic or Gothics may refer to: People and languages *Goths or Gothic people, the ethnonym of a group of East Germanic tribes ...

Westminster Abbey
, London.


High Middle Ages

In 1092,
William II
William II
led an invasion of
Strathclyde Strathclyde ( in Gaelic Gaelic is an adjective that means "pertaining to the Gaels". As a noun it refers to the group of languages spoken by the Gaels, or to any one of the languages individually. Gaelic languages are spoken in Ireland, Sco ...
, a
Celtic The words Celt and Celtic (also Keltic) may refer to: Ethno-linguistics *Celts The Celts (, see pronunciation of ''Celt'' for different usages) are. "CELTS location: Greater Europe time period: Second millennium B.C.E. to present ancestry: ...

Celtic
kingdom in what is now southwest Scotland and Cumbria. In doing so, he annexed what is now the county of
Cumbria Cumbria ( ) is a ceremonial A ceremony (, ) is a unified ritual A ritual is a sequence of activities involving gestures, words, actions, or objects, performed according to a set sequence. Rituals may be prescribed by the traditions of a ...

Cumbria
to England. In 1124,
Henry IHenry I may refer to: 876–1366 * Henry I the Fowler, King of Germany (876–936) * Henry I, Duke of Bavaria (died 955) * Henry I of Austria, Margrave of Austria (died 1018) * Henry I of France (1008–1060) * Henry I the Long, Margrave of the Nord ...

Henry I
ceded what is now southeast Scotland (called
Lothian Lothian (; sco, Lowden, Loudan, -en, -o(u)n; gd, Lodainn ) is a region of the Scottish Lowlands The Lowlands ( sco, Lallans or ; gd, a' Ghalldachd, , place of the foreigners, ) is a cultural and historical region of Scotland. Culturally, ...

Lothian
) to the
Kingdom of Scotland The Kingdom of Scotland ( gd, Rìoghachd na h-Alba; sco, Kinrick o Scotland) was a sovereign state A sovereign state is a polity, political entity represented by one centralized government that has sovereignty over a geographic area. Inte ...
, in return for the King of Scotland's loyalty. This final cession established what would become the traditional
borders
borders
of England which have remained largely unchanged since then (except for occasional and temporary changes). This area of land had previously been a part of the Anglian
Kingdom of Northumbria Northumbria (; ang, Norþanhymbra Rīċe; la, Regnum Northanhymbrorum) was an early medieval Anglo-Saxon kingdom in what is now Northern England and Lothian, south-east Scotland. The name derives from the Old English meaning "the people o ...

Kingdom of Northumbria
. Lothian contained what later became the Scottish capital,
Edinburgh Edinburgh (; sco, Edinburgh; gd, Dùn Èideann ) is the capital city A capital or capital city is the holding primary status in a , , , , or other , usually as its seat of the government. A capital is typically a that physically enc ...

Edinburgh
. This arrangement was later finalized in 1237 by the
Treaty of York The Treaty of York was an agreement between the kings Henry III of England and Alexander II of Scotland, signed at York on 25 September 1237, which affirmed that Northumberland (which at the time also encompassed County Durham), Cumberland, and We ...
. The Duchy of Aquitaine came into
personal union A personal union is the combination of two or more states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The Stat ...

personal union
with the Kingdom of England upon the accession of
Henry II Henry II may refer to: Kings *Henry II of England (1133–89), reigned from 1154 *Henry II of Jerusalem and Cyprus (1271–1324), reigned from 1285; king of Jerusalem in name only from 1291 *Henry II of Castile (1334–79), reigned 1366–67 and ...

Henry II
, who had married Eleanor, Duchess of Aquitaine. The Kingdom of England and the Duchy of Normandy remained in personal union until John, King of England, John Lackland, Henry II's son and fifth-generation descendant of William I, lost the continental possessions of the Duchy to Philip II of France in 1204. A few remnants of Duchy of Normandy, Normandy, including the Channel Islands, remained in John's possession, together with most of the Duchy of Aquitaine.


Conquest of Wales

Up until the Norman conquest of England, Wales had remained for the most part independent of the
Anglo-Saxon kingdoms The Heptarchy is a collective name applied to the seven king King is the title given to a male in a variety of contexts. The female equivalent is , which title is also given to the of a king. *In the context of prehistory, antiqui ...
, although some Welsh kings did sometimes acknowledge the
Bretwalda ''Bretwalda'' (also ''brytenwalda'' and ''bretenanwealda'', sometimes capitalised) is an Old English Old English (, ), or Anglo-Saxon, is the earliest recorded form of the English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germ ...

Bretwalda
. Soon after the
Norman conquest of England The Norman Conquest (or the Conquest) was the 11th-century invasion and occupation of England England is a Countries of the United Kingdom, country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Wales to its west and ...
, however, some Norman lords began to attack Wales. They conquered and ruled parts of it, acknowledging the overlordship of the Norman kings of England but with considerable local independence. Over many years these "Marcher Lords" conquered more and more of Wales, against considerable resistance led by various Welsh princes, who also often acknowledged the overlordship of the Norman kings of England. Edward I of England, Edward I defeated Llywelyn ap Gruffudd, and so effectively conquered Wales, in 1282. He created the title Prince of Wales for his heir, the future Edward II of England, Edward II, in 1301. Edward I's conquest was brutal and the subsequent repression considerable, as the magnificent Welsh castles such as Conwy Castle, Conwy, Harlech Castle, Harlech, and Caernarfon Castle, Caernarfon attest; but this event re-united under a single ruler the lands of Roman Britain for the first time since the establishment of the Kingdom of the Jutes in
Kent Kent is a county A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposesChambers Dictionary The ''Chambers Dictionary'' (''TCD'') was first published by William Chambers (publisher), William and Robert ...

Kent
in the 5th century, some 700 years before. Accordingly, this was a highly significant moment in the history of medieval England, as it re-established links with the pre-Saxon past. These links were exploited for political purposes to unite the peoples of the kingdom, including the Anglo-Normans, by popularising Welsh mythology, Welsh legends. The Welsh language—derived from the British language (Celtic), British language, continued to be spoken by the majority of the population of Wales for at least another 500 years, and is still a majority language in parts of the country.


Late Middle Ages

Edward III of England, Edward III was the first English king to have a English claims to the French throne, claim to the throne of France. His pursuit of the claim resulted in the
Hundred Years' War The Hundred Years’ War (french: link=yes, La guerre de Cent Ans; 1337–1453) was a series of armed conflicts between the kingdoms of and during the . It originated from disputed claims to the between the English and the French roy ...
(1337–1453), which pitted five kings of England of the House of Plantagenet against five kings of France of the Capetian House of Valois. Extensive naval raiding was carried out by all sides during the war, often involving privateers such as John Hawley of Dartmouth or the Castilian Pero Niño. Though the English won numerous victories, they were unable to overcome the numerical superiority of the French and their strategic use of gunpowder weapons. England was defeated at the Battle of Formigny in 1450 and finally at the Battle of Castillon in 1453, retaining only a single town in France, Calais. During the Hundred Years' War an English identity began to develop in place of the previous division between the Norman lords and their Anglo-Saxon subjects. This was a consequence of sustained hostility to the increasingly nationalist French, whose kings and other leaders (notably the charismatic Joan of Arc) used a developing sense of French identity to help draw people to their cause. The Anglo-Normans became separate from their cousins who held lands mainly in France and mocked the former for their archaic and bastardised spoken French. Middle English, English also became the language of the law courts during this period. The kingdom had little time to recover before entering the
Wars of the Roses The Wars of the Roses were a series of fifteenth-century English civil wars for control of the throne of England, fought between supporters of two rival cadet branches of the royal House of Plantagenet: the House of Lancaster, represented by a ...
(1455–1487), a series of civil wars over possession of the throne between the House of Lancaster (whose heraldic symbol was the red rose) and the House of York (whose symbol was the white rose), each led by different branches of the descendants of Edward III. The end of these wars found the throne held by the descendant of an initially illegitimate member of the House of Lancaster, married to the eldest daughter of the House of York:
Henry VIIHenry VII may refer to: * Henry VII of England (1457–1509), King of England and Lord of Ireland from 1485 until his death in 1509; the founder of the House of Tudor * Henry VII, Duke of Bavaria (died 1047), count of Luxembourg (as Henry II) from 1 ...
and Elizabeth of York. They were the founders of the
Tudor dynasty The House of Tudor was an English royal house of Welsh origin, descended from the Tudors of Penmynydd. Tudor monarchs ruled the Kingdom of England The Kingdom of England was a sovereign state on the island of Great Britain from 12 July ...
, which ruled the kingdom from 1485 to 1603.


Tudor period

Wales retained a separate legal and administrative system, which had been established by Edward I in the late 13th century. The country was divided between the Marcher Lords, who gave feudal allegiance to the crown, and the
Principality of Wales The Principality of Wales ( cy, Tywysogaeth Cymru) existed between 1216 and 1536, encompassing two-thirds of modern Wales Wales ( cy, Cymru ) is a country A country is a distinct territory, territorial body or political entity. It i ...

Principality of Wales
. Under the Tudor monarchy,
Henry VIII Henry VIII (28 June 149128 January 1547) was King of England This list of kings and queens of the Kingdom of England The Kingdom of England was a sovereign state on the island of Great Britain from 12 July 927, when it emerged fro ...

Henry VIII
replaced the laws of Wales with those of England (under the Laws in Wales Acts 1535–1542). Wales was incorporated into the Kingdom of England, and henceforth was represented in the Parliament of England. During the 1530s, Henry VIII overthrew the power of the Roman Catholic Church within the kingdom, replacing the pope as head of the English Church and seizing the Church's lands, thereby facilitating the creation of a variation of Catholicism that became more Protestant over time. This had the effect of aligning England with Scotland, which also gradually adopted a Protestant religion, whereas the most important continental powers, France and Spain, remained Roman Catholic. In 1541, during Henry VIII's reign, the Parliament of Ireland proclaimed him king of Ireland, thereby bringing the Kingdom of Ireland into personal union with the Kingdom of England. Calais, the last remaining continental possession of the Kingdom, was lost in 1558, during the reign of Philip II of Spain, Philip and Mary I of England, Mary I. Their successor,
Elizabeth I Elizabeth I (7 September 153324 March 1603) was Queen of England and Ireland Ireland ( ; ga, Éire ; Ulster-Scots: ) is an island upright=1.15, Great_Britain.html"_;"title="Ireland_(left)_and_Great_Britain">Ireland_(left)_an ...

Elizabeth I
, consolidated the new and increasingly Protestant
Church of England The Church of England (C of E) is a Christian church Christian Church is a Protestant Protestantism is a form of Christianity that originated with the 16th-century Reformation, a movement against what its followers perceived to be Critic ...
. She also began to build up the kingdom's naval strength, on the foundations Henry VIII had laid down. By 1588, her new navy was strong enough to defeat the Spanish Armada, which had sought to invade England to put a Catholic monarch on the throne in her place.


Early modern history

The House of Tudor ended with the death of Elizabeth I on 24 March 1603. James I of England, James I ascended the throne of England and brought it into personal union with the Kingdom of Scotland. Despite the Union of the Crowns, the kingdoms remained separate and independent states: a state of affairs which lasted for more than a century.


Civil War and Interregnum

The Stuart kings overestimated the power of the English monarchy, and were cast down by Parliament in 1645 and 1688. In the first instance, Charles I of England, Charles I's introduction of new forms of taxation in defiance of Parliament led to the English Civil War (1641–45), in which the king was defeated, and to the abolition of the monarchy under Oliver Cromwell during the English Interregnum, Interregnum of 1649–1660. Henceforth, the monarch could reign only at the will of Parliament. After the High Court of Justice for the trial of Charles I, trial and
execution of Charles I The execution of Charles I by beheading occurred on Tuesday 30 January 1649 outside the Banqueting House in Whitehall Whitehall is a road and area in the City of Westminster, Central London. The road forms the first part of the A roads in Zo ...
in January 1649, the Rump Parliament passed an s:Act declaring England to be a Commonwealth, act declaring England to be a Commonwealth on 19 May 1649. The monarchy and the House of Lords were abolished, and so the House of Commons became a unitary legislative chamber with a new body, the Council of State (England), Council of State becoming the executive. However the Army remained the dominant institution in the new republic and the most prominent general was Oliver Cromwell. The Commonwealth fought Cromwellian conquest of Ireland, wars in Ireland and Scotland in the Wars of the Three Kingdoms, Scotland which were subdued and placed under Commonwealth military occupation. In April 1653 Cromwell and the other ''Grandee (New Model Army), Grandees'' of the New Model Army, frustrated with the members of the Rump Parliament who would not pass legislation to dissolve the Rump and to allow a new more representative parliament to be elected, stopped the Rump's session by force of arms and declared the Rump dissolved. After an experiment with a Nominated Assembly (Barebone's Parliament), the Grandees in the Army, through the Council of State imposed a new constitutional arrangement under a written constitution called the Instrument of Government. Under the Instrument of Government executive power lay with a Lord Protector (Protectorate), Lord Protector (an office to be held for the life of the incumbent) and there were to be triennial Parliaments, with each sitting for at least five months. Article 23 of the Instrument of Government stated that Oliver Cromwell was to be the first Lord Protector. The Instrument of Government was replaced by a second constitution (the Humble Petition and Advice) under which the Lord Protector could nominate his successor. Cromwell nominated his son Richard Cromwell, Richard who became Lord Protector on the death of Oliver on 3 September 1658.


Restoration and Glorious Revolution

Richard proved to be ineffectual and was unable to maintain his rule. He resigned his title and retired into obscurity. The Rump Parliament was recalled and there was a second period where the executive power lay with the Council of state. But this restoration of Commonwealth rule, similar to that before the Protectorate, proved to be unstable, and the exiled claimant, Charles II of England, Charles II, was Restoration (England), restored to the throne in 1660. Following the Restoration of the monarchy in 1660, an attempt by James II of England, James II to reintroduce Roman Catholicism—a century after its suppression by the Tudors—led to the
Glorious Revolution The Glorious Revolution of November 1688 ( ga, An Réabhlóid Ghlórmhar; gd, Rèabhlaid Ghlòrmhor; cy, Chwyldro Gogoneddus), the invasion also known as the ''Glorieuze Overtocht'' or Glorious Crossing by the Dutch, was the deposition of ...
of 1688, in which he was deposed by Parliament. The Crown was then offered by Parliament to James II's Protestant daughter and son-in-law/nephew, William III of England, William III and Mary II of England, Mary II.


Union with Scotland

In the Scottish case, the attractions were partly financial and partly to do with removing English trade sanctions put in place through the Alien Act 1705. The English were more anxious about the royal succession. The death of William III of England, William III in 1702 had led to the accession of his sister-in-law Anne, Queen of Great Britain, Anne to the thrones of England and Scotland, but her only surviving child had died in 1700, and the English Act of Settlement 1701 had given the succession to the English crown to the Protestant House of Hanover. Securing the same succession in Scotland became the primary object of English strategic thinking towards Scotland. By 1704, the Union of the Crowns was in crisis, with the Scottish Act of Security 1704, Act of Security allowing for the Scottish Parliament to choose a different monarch, which could in turn lead to an independent foreign policy during a major European war. The English establishment did not wish to risk a House of Stuart, Stuart on the Scottish throne, nor the possibility of a Scottish military alliance with another power. A Treaty of Union was agreed on 22 July 1706, and following the Acts of Union 1707, Acts of Union of 1707, which created the
Kingdom of Great Britain The Kingdom of Great Britain, officially called Great Britain,"After the political union of England and Scotland in 1707, the nation's official name became 'Great Britain'", ''The American Pageant, Volume 1'', Cengage Learning (2012) was a s ...

Kingdom of Great Britain
, the independence of the kingdoms of England and Scotland came to an end on 1 May 1707. The Acts of Union created a customs union and monetary union and provided that any "laws and statutes" that were "contrary to or inconsistent with the terms" of the Acts would "cease and become void". The English and Scottish Parliaments were merged into the Parliament of Great Britain, located in Palace of Westminster, Westminster, London. At this point England ceased to exist as a separate political entity, and since then has had no national Government of England, government. The laws of England were unaffected, with the legal jurisdiction continuing to be that of England and Wales, while Scotland continued to have its own laws and law courts. This continued after the Acts of Union 1800, 1801 union between the kingdoms of Great Britain and Ireland, forming the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. In 1922 the Irish Free State seceded from the United Kingdom, leading to the latter being Royal and Parliamentary Titles Act 1927, renamed the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.


Territorial divisions

The historic counties of England, counties of England were established for administration by the Normans, in most cases based on earlier shires established by the Anglo-Saxons. They ceased to be used for administration only with the creation of the administrative counties of England, administrative counties in 1889. Unlike the partly self-governing ancient borough, boroughs that covered urban areas, the counties of medieval England existed primarily as a means of enforcing central government power, enabling monarchs to exercise control over local areas through their chosen representatives – originally high sheriff, sheriffs and later the lord-lieutenants – and their subordinate justice of the peace, justices of the peace. Counties were used initially for the administration of justice, collection of taxes and organisation of the military, and later for local government and electing parliamentary representation. Some outlying counties were from time to time accorded County palatine, palatine status with some military and central government functions vested in a local noble or bishop. The last such, the County Palatine of Durham, did not lose this special status until the 19th century. Although all of England was divided into shires by the time of the Norman conquest, some counties were formed considerably later, up to the 16th century. Because of their differing origins the counties List of counties of England by area in 1831, varied considerably in size. The county boundaries were fairly static between the 16th century Laws in Wales Acts 1535-1542, Laws in Wales acts and the Local Government Act 1888.Vision of Britain
– Census Geographies. Retrieved 19 October 2006.
Each shire was responsible for gathering taxes for the central government; for local defence; and for justice, through assize courts. The power of the English feudal barony, feudal barons to control their landholding was considerably weakened in 1290 by the statute of ''Quia Emptores''. Feudal baronies became perhaps obsolete (but not extinct) on the abolition of feudal tenure during the English Civil War, Civil War, as confirmed by the Tenures Abolition Act 1660 passed under the English Restoration, Restoration which took away knight-service and other legal rights. Tenure by knight-service was abolished and discharged and the lands covered by such tenures, including once-feudal baronies, were henceforth held by socage (''i.e.'', in exchange for monetary rents). The English ''Fitzwalter Case'' in 1670 ruled that barony by tenure had been discontinued for many years and any claims to a peerage on such basis, meaning a right to sit in the House of Lords, were not to be revived, nor any right of succession based on them. The Statute of Rhuddlan in 1284 followed the Conquest of Wales by Edward I, conquest of Wales by Edward I of England. It assumed the lands held by the Princes of Gwynedd under the title "Prince of Wales" as legally part of the lands of England, and established shire counties on the English model over those areas. The Welsh Marches, Marcher Lords were progressively tied to the English kings by the grants of lands and lordships in England. The Council of Wales and the Marches, administered from Ludlow Castle, was initially established in 1472 by Edward IV of England to govern the lands held under the Principality of WalesWilliam Searle Holdsworth, "A History of English Law," Little, Brown, and Company, 1912, p. 502 and the bordering English counties. It was abolished in 1689. Under the Laws in Wales Acts 1535–1542 introduced under Henry VIII of England, Henry VIII, the jurisdiction of the marcher lords was abolished in 1536. The Acts had the effect of annexing Wales to England and creating a single state and legal jurisdiction, commonly referred to as England and Wales. At the same time the Council of Wales was created in 1472, a Council of the North was set up for the North of England, northern counties of England. After falling into disuse, it was re-established in 1537 and abolished in 1641. A very short-lived Council of the West also existed for the West Country between 1537 and 1540.


See also

* * * * * *List of English monarchs * * *


Notes


References


Bibliography

* Bartlett, Robert. ''England under the Norman and Angevin kings: 1075–1225'' (Oxford UP, 2002), major scholarly survey. * Black, J.R. ''The Reign of Elizabeth, 1558–1603'' (1959), scholarly survey. * Borman, Tracy. ''Thomas Cromwell: The Untold Story of Henry VIII's Most Faithful Servant'' (2015) popular biography. * Geoffrey Elton, Elton, G. R., ''England under the Tudors'' (London: Methuen, 1955), scholarly survey * Ellis, Steven G. ''Ireland in the age of the Tudors, 1447–1603: English expansion and the end of Gaelic rule'' (Routledge, 2014). * Guy, John. ''The Tudors: a very short introduction'' (Oxford UP, 2013). * Harriss, G.L. ''Shaping the nation: England 1360–1461'' (Oxford UP, 2005), scholarly survey. * Jacob, E.F. ''The Fifteenth Century, 1399–1485'' (Oxford History of England, 1961)), scholarly survey. * Jenkins, Elizabeth. ''Elizabeth the Great'' (Time Incorporated, 1964). popular well-illustrated biography. * Jones, J. Gwynfor. ''Wales and the Tudor state: government, religious change and the social order, 1534–1603'' (U of Wales Press, 1989). * Levin, Carole. ''The heart and stomach of a king: Elizabeth I and the politics of sex and power'' (U of Pennsylvania Press, 2013). * Loades, David Michael. ''Politics and nation: England 1450–1660'' (Wiley-Blackwell, 1999). * Loades, David Michael. ''Power in Tudor England'' (1997). * McCaffrey, Wallace. ''Elizabeth I'', a major scholarly biography * McKisack, May. ''The Fourteenth Century, 1307–1399'' (Oxford History of England, 1959). * Neale, J.E. ''Queen Elizabeth I: a biography'' (1957) old scholarly biography; very well written. * Penn, Thomas. ''Winter king: Henry VII and the dawn of Tudor England'' (2012). * Powicke, Maurice. ''The Thirteenth Century, 1216–1307'' (Oxford History of England, 1962) scholarly survey * Ridley, Jasper G. ''Henry VIII'' (1985), biography. * Roberts, Clayton, F. David Roberts, and Douglas Bisson. '' A History of England, Volume 1: Prehistory to 1714'' (Routledge, 2016). university textbook. * Thomson, John A.F. ''The Transformation of Medieval England 1370–1529'' (Routledge, 2014). * Williams, Penry. ''The Later Tudors: England, 1547–1603'' (Oxford UP, 1995), major scholarly survey.. {{DEFAULTSORT:England, Kingdom Of Kingdom of England, 1707 disestablishments in Great Britain Former countries in the British Isles Former kingdoms Former monarchies of Europe 10th-century establishments in England States and territories established in the 920s States and territories disestablished in 1649 States and territories established in 1660 States and territories disestablished in 1707 927 establishments