I Customs and traditions in the UK
Every nation and every country has its own customs and traditions. Britain is different from our own country. This is natural. In Britain traditions play a more important part in the life of the people than in other countries. Englishmen are proud of their traditions and carefully keep them up. It has been the law for about 300 years that all the theatres are closed on Sundays. No letters are delivered; only a few Sunday papers are published. Foreigners coming to Britain are stuck at once by quite a number of customs and pecularities in the English life. The 6 ravens have been kept in the Tower of London now for enturies. They used to come in from Essex for food cracks when the Tower was used as a palace. Over the years people thought that if the ravens ever left the Tower, the Monarchy would fall. So Charles II decreed that 6 ravens should always be keot in the Tower and should be paid a wage from the tresury. Sometimes they live as long as 25 years, but thrit wings are clipped, so they can’t fly away, and when araven dies another raven brought from Essex. Some ceremonies are traditional, such as a Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace, Trooping the Colour, the State Opening of Parlament. The Ceremony of Trooping the Colour is one of the most fascinating. It is staged in front of Buckingham Palace. It is held annually on the monarch’s official birthday which was the second Saturday in June. Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II was Colonel-in-Chief of the Life Guards. She was escorted by Horse Guards riding to the Parade. The ceremeny is accompanied by the music of bands. The processionis is headed by the Queen. In england the Queen opens the parlament once a year, she goes to the Houses of Parlament in the golden coach, she wears the crown jewels. She opens the Parlament with a speech in the House of Lords. The cavalrymen wear red uiforms, shining helmets, long black boots and long white gloves. These men are Life Guards. In the House of Lords, Chancellor sits on the sack of wool. This tradition comes from the old times when sheep wool made England rich and powerful. In the House of Commons there are two rows benches: one row is for the government and the other one is for the opposition. The benches are divided by a strip of carpet, which is also a tradition from old days, when that division prevented the two parties from fighting during the debates. The englishmen have love for old things. They prefer houses with a fireplace and a garden to a flat, modern houses with central heating. The houses are traditionally not very high. They are usually two-storied. British buses are double-decked and red, mail-boxes are yellow, the cars keep to the left isde of road-all these are traditions. Most English love garden in front of the house is a little square covered with cement painted green in imitation of grass and a box of flowers. They love flowers very much. The English people love animals very much, too. Sometimes thire pets have a far better life in Britain than anywhere else. In Britain they usually buy things for thire pets in pet-shops. In recent years they bagan to show love for more “exotic” animals, such as crocodiles, elephants, and so on. Queuing is normal in Britain, when they are waiting for bus, waitng to be served in a shop. People will become very angry, and even rude, if you “jump” the queue. Traditionally telephone boxes, letter boxes and double-decker buses are red. Old customs and traditions may seem atrange to visitors but the English still keep them up, which mix with everyday life in the streets.
II Holidays in Great Britain
1. There are 8 public holidays or bank holidays in a year in Great Britain, that are days on which people need not to go in to work. They are Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Year’s Day, Good Friday, Easter Monday, May day, Spring Bank Holiday and Late Summer Bank Holiday. The term “bank holiday” dates back to the 19th century when in 1871 and...
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