The United Kingdom is a state made up of the historic countries of England, Wales and Scotland, as well as Northern Ireland. It is known as the home of both modern parliamentary democracy and the Industrial Revolution.
Two world wars and the end of empire diminished its role in the 20th century, and the 2016 referendum vote to leave the European Union has raised significant questions about the country’s global role.
Nonetheless, the United Kingdom remains an economic and military power with great political and cultural influence around the world.
- United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
- Capital: London
- Population 62.8 million
- Area 242,514 sq km (93,638 sq miles)
- Major language English
- Major religion Christianity
- Life expectancy 78 years (men), 82 years (women)
- Currency pound sterling