England vs Wales
There is no other country in the world except England that has so many names. And with each name, its geographical boundaries change to include adjacent territories. The world knows England by several names such as Great Britain, UK, and even British Isles. When we say England, we are talking of only England without taking into account Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland, all of which become its part when we refer to UK or the United Kingdom. Great Britain leaves apart Northern Ireland, and when someone uses the word British Isles, the whole of Ireland is being considered as a part of the UK. It is clear then that England and Wales are two separate countries with different governments, constitutions, and even independent representation in various sporting events internationally. Let us take a closer look at these two countries.
If we look at geography, Wales is a region separated from England by Cambrian Mountains. Wales is surrounded by Irish Sea on North, West, and South and by England on the East. Also, if one looks at the map of the UK, it is noteworthy that Wales is given the same color as the rest of England indicating some sort of suzerainty of England over Wales. Wales is the largest island in the Irish Sea with an area of 8000 square miles and a population of over 3 million. It has a long coastline with the country being hilly in general.
Today England and Wales is one jurisdiction within UK comprising two of the 4 countries UK is made up of. However, Wales was an independent county for a long period of time in history. It was captured by Romans in the 1st till 5th century AD. By 11th century AD, Wales came under the control of England and English rulers started giving the title of Prince of Wales to their sons. Though, there were murmurs of dissent earlier, it was the ascension of Henry VII to the throne of England in 1485 that changed the situation as he was a Welshman. It was under his son Henry VIII that Wales formally joined England in 1536 under the Act of Union.
Towards the end of the 20th century, there was a revival of Welsh pride and identity that led to the country moving politically towards self governance. This process was accepted and hastened by the then British Prime Minister Tony Blair. He supported Wales in its attempts to assert itself more politically and himself opened Welsh national assembly. This provided some sort of self government to Wales and today the government of Wales has powers to make and amend laws for itself.
What is the difference between England and Wales?
• Wales lies west of England and is separated by Camry Mountains from England.
• England is 15 times bigger than Wales in area.
• Wales is hilly, while England has more plains.
• England is the only neighbor of Wales in the west that is surrounded by Irish Sea on rest of the sides.
• Welsh is the language of Wales, though English is spoken by most of the people.
• Cardiff is the capital of Wales while London is the capital of England.
• Monarchs of England traditionally gave the title of Prince of Wales to their sons to indicate unity and relationship with Wales
• Despite being under control of England, Wales today has its own assembly and its government can make and amend laws affecting it.