10 Interesting Facts About England by:Sue Marchant
Do you think you know all there is to know about England? Here are a few interesting facts about England that you might not have heard previously.
Robin Hood existed. The true facts about his life are largely unknown and probably much less glamorous than TV and Hollywood have made them out to be. However there does seem to be little doubt that his criminal activity was largely taking from those with plenty and giving it to those with little.
In the mid 17th century Christmas was banned in England by order of Oliver Cromwell. As Protectorate for England for his Puritan followers, he considered Christmas traditions of the day, such as wassailing where the people would go from house to house and drink a toast to the householder and their families, to be against their religious beliefs. Christmas was reinstated once Cromwell was removed from power.
In 1826 the world's first zoo opened in London. Still open, London Zoo's most famous exhibit was an African bull elephant named Jumbo, who would later be sold to Barnum & Bailey's Circus and shipped to America. Charles Darwin was thought to be a frequent visitor to the zoo, which had among its other species, an orangutan.
England has two flags; the red cross of St George on a white background, and the Union Jack which is made up of the flags of England, Scotland and Ireland. Most commonly used is the Union Jack, but you will see the other flag in use when the three countries are all represented individually, such as competing in sporting events.
From the Battle of Hastings in 1066 until 1362 the official language of England was French! To this day the Sovereign's motto which appears on the Royal Coat of Arms is "Dieu et mon droit", French for "God and my right".
England, home to the 2012 Olympic Games, is rumored to be the birthplace of the modern Olympics! Contrary to popular opinion that they were started in Greece, there was a small town in England that began holding the Much Wenlock Olympic games in 1850 (it would be another 46 years before Athens caught on). Much Wenlock near Shrewsbury in Shropshire still holds its Olympic games every July.
3.5 million people paid to see London from a bird's eye view in the London Eye during 2007, but by far the most visited attraction in England's capital that year was the British Museum with just over 4.5 million visitors.
Keep hold of your umbrella if traveling on the London Underground. Approximately 80,000 people lose their umbrella's there every year!
Big Ben is more than an oversized clock tower! Within the ornate walls of the clock tower are cells. They haven't been used since 1880, but they are still there waiting to imprison any Members of Parliament who dare to break parliamentary privilege.
Wherever you visit in England, you're never far from the sea! It doesn't matter where you stand in England, you're never more than 80 miles from the sea.
About the author
For more interesting facts about England visit http://www.essentially-england.com/facts-about-england.html.To know about the history of England,its culture, food and travel, visit Sue Marchant's website http://www.essentially-england.com