Great Britain (kingdom)
Great Britain (in English: Great Britain), officially called the United Kingdom of Great Britain (United Kingdom of Great Britain), is a former sovereign state located on the island of Great Britain, in northern Europe, which existed from May 1, 1707 to December 31, 1800.
The kingdom was founded by the union into a single state of the Kingdom of Scotland and the Kingdom of England (which included Wales), by the Treaty of Union of 1706 followed by the Acts of Union. Both kingdoms had already been ruled by the same king since the Union of the Crowns in 1603. The kingdom encompassed Great Britain and its outlying islands, but not the Kingdom of Ireland, which remained a separate domain under the British Crown newly created.
On January 1, 1801, the kingdoms of Great Britain and Ireland united to form the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.
The first occurrence of the association of the words "Great" and "Britain" to designate the British Isles is found in ancient Greek, notably used by Ptolemy to distinguish between Great Britain (ancient Greek: Μεγάλη Βρεττανία) and Ireland (Ancient Greek: Μικρά Βρεττανία).
The current use of the word Great before Britain comes from French, which uses the same word "Bretagne" to refer to both the island of Great Britain and Brittany. The French therefore distinguishes between the two by calling the island "La Grande Bretagne", a distinction which has been transferred to English.
The Treaty of Union and subsequent Acts of Union declare that the kingdoms of England and Scotland will be "united into One Kingdom by the Name of Great Britain". ). The Acts of Union use the name "United Kingdom of Great Britain". The name of the kingdom officially becomes "Great Britain" rather than "England" or "Scotland". The name of the island was used in the new official institutions like the Parliament of Great Britain (Parliament of Great Britain),,,,.
The Parliament of Great Britain referred to the state in legislation by its official name: the United Kingdom of Great Britain. Legislation for parliament used the short form "United Kingdom", as did the Parliament of Scotland and the Parliament of England in the Acts of Union in 1707. When the parliaments of England and Scotland dissolved and formed the Parliament of Great Britain, they agreed to form a new state: the United Kingdom of Great Britain. The Acts of Union came into force in early May 1707. The new legislature was first summoned to Westminster in October of the same year.
The descriptive term United Kingdom was even used formally and informally in the 18th century, during the existence of the kingdom. The denominations "United Kingdom of Great Britain" and "United Kingdom" are found on several publications and legislative documents,,,,,.
"Great Britain" and "kingdom of Great Britain" are said respectively in the languages spoken in the kingdom:
Great Britain and Kingdom of Great Britain in English;
Breten Veur and Rywvaneth Breten Veur in Cornish;
Great Breetain and Kinrick o Great Breetain in scots;
Breatainn Mhòr and Rìoghachd na Breatainne Mòire in Scottish Gaelic;
Prydain Fawr and Teyrnas Prydain Fawr in Welsh.
Union of Crowns
Towards a single state
Relations with Ireland
Union with Ireland
Notes and References