Otázka: Canada, Australia and Other English-Speaking Coutries
Ireland is an island about 486 km long and 275 km wide, separated from Great Britain Britain by the Irish Sea. It has an extremely mild climate and lots of rain – good for growing grass, which is why is it known as the Emerald Isle.
The island has had an interesting political history, struggling to gain independence from the UK, and since 1921 it has been divided politically into two parts.
The majority of the island, 26 countries (or administrative districts), are known as the Republic of Ireland and the population is 4.5million. The remaining 6 coutries in the north are called Northern Ireland, and remain part of the United Kingdom. Northern Ireland has a population of 2 million and its main city is Belfast.
Irish Gaelic is the offical native language of the Republic of Ireland, but in reality English is used in everyday life.
Dublin is the capital city and is over 1 000 years old. It has a strong history of writers and poets like Oscar Wilde and James Joyce. Its main tourist attractions are Dublin Castle, St Patrick’s Cathedral, O’Connell Street and the Guinness Brewery. The city has a lively Irish music and pub scene.
Other important towns are Cork, Limerick, Galway and Waterford. Top tourist sites include
rocky outcrops and bays).
Ireland has had a very difficult history. The problems started in the 16th century when English rulers tried to conquer Ireland. The majority of Irish people were(and are) Catholics but the English rulers were Protestant. The English took away the Catholic’s land and gave it to Protestant Scottish and English farmers. For hundreds of years, Irish Catholics fought against the English. Eventually, in 1921, the British government was forced to give independence to the south of Ireland. The results is that today there are two ‚‚Irelands‘‘, Northern Ireland. In the north, is part of the United Kingdom. The Republic of Ireland, in the south, is an independent country.
LANDSCAPE AND CLIMATE
Ireland is sometimes called ‚‚the Emerald isle‘‘ because it is a very green island with a wet but warm climate.
FACT BOX: IRELAND
Status: independent country (Northern Ireland)
Area: 70,284sq km
Language: English, Irish
Religion: 93% Catholic
In the 1840s people died of hunger because their crop was affected by disease.
Many people still work on the land but more and more people are moving to the cities to work in factories and offices.
The Irish are famous for being warmhearted and friendly.
Since independence, Ireland has revived its own culture of music, language (Irish, a form of Gaelic), literature (Wilde) and singing. Different areas have different styles of old Irish songs which are sung without instruments. Other kinds of irish music use many different instruments such as the harp, the fiddle (violin), whistles, and Irish bagpipes.
THE REPUBLIC OF IRELAND
The Republic of Ireland (the Irish Republic) occupies about five-sixth of the total area of Ireland – the Emerald Isle. The rest of the island . the largest part of the province of Ulster – is occupied by Northern Ireland.
The Republic of Ireland covers 70 thousand square kilometres and consists of four provinces(Ulster, Munster, Leinster, Connaught) and 26 coutries.
Most of the island is a central plain, ringed by low mountains, in the west and south and by lowlands in the east.
The Shannon River, the longest river in the British Isles. It forms many important lakes. The seacoast is mild and beautiful.
The climate is temperate, with mild winters and cool summers. Heav forms many important lakes. The seacoast is mild and beautiful.
The climate is temperate, with mild winters and cool summers. Heavy rainfall in all seasons encourages green vegetation, hence the name the Emerald Isle. The soil is suitable for farming and cattle raising.
The capital od the Republic of Ireland is Dublin, with more than one million inhabitants.
The first inhabitants of Ireland were wise Druids. In about 300B.C. was conquered by the Celts (from France called Gaels). In 432 A.D. Patrick, the Patron Saint of Ireland, converted the people to Christianity and taught them to read and write. Shamrock became the Ireland’s national emblem. In St Patrick’s name, the day of the wearing of the green shamrock has been celebrated on 17th March by the Irish all over the world.
From the 5th to the 8th century it was the golden era of Irish culture, The era ended in the 8th century when the Vikings invaded Ireland. The Norman conquest followed under Henry VIII, who took the title king of Ireland, imposed his Protestant religion on the country. In 1845 the Great Famine hit Ireland and lasted for four years. Starvation, diseases and mass emigration reduced the population from over 8 million before the Great Famine to about 4.5million at the end of the century.
In 1899 the Sinn Féin movement started in Ireland. Later it organized an army of volunteers known as the Irish Republican Army (IRA) and, in 1916, inspired an armed rebellion on Easter Monday in Dublin. The Irish Republic was proclaimed on that day.
In 1922 the Irish Free State consisting of 26 Catholic countries and Northern Ireland consisting of the 6 Protestant countries of Ulster. In 1949 the State was renamed the Republic of Ireland and left the British Commonwealth of Nations, Today the population of Ireland is about 3.5 million inhabitants.
People living in the Republic of Ireland are bilingual: they speak Irish Gaelic and English which is their second official language.
The Republic of Ireland is an independent country with its political systém set up on a democratic principle close to that of the United States of America.
The head of the state is the President elected for 7 years by the direct vote of the people.
The Irish flag is a tricolor with vertical stripes of green, white and orange. The green colour symbolizes the Emerald Isle and the Catholic majority of the population. White in the centre expresses the need for peace and understanding between Catholics and Protestants represented by the orange stripe.
The Irish national anthem is called ‚‚The Soldier’s Song‘‘.
Ireland has always been primarily agricultural producting mainly beef and dairy products. Tourism has also become one of the fast growing industries.
ST.PATRICK – IRELAND’S PATRON SAINT
He was not a native Irishman. He was born in either Scotland or Roman England in the later half of the 4th century AD. His parents were Romans living in Britain and when he was fourteen or so, he was captured by pirates along with other children and sold into slavery in Ireland.
Ireland at this time was a land of druids and pagan beliefs. During his captivity, Patrick turned to God who, according to legend, told him to escape. It took him six years before he succeeded. He went to Britain and then to France where he joined a monastery. Patrick spent around 12 years in training there and when he became a bishop he dreamed that the Irish were calling him back to Ireland to tell them about God, so he set out for Ireland and started converting the Irish to Christianity. For 20 years he travelled throughout Irelnd, establishing monasteries and setting up schools and churches across the country. He died on MArch 17, 461AD.
By the end of the 7th century Patrick had become a legendary figure. One legend says that Patrick used the three-leafed shamrock to explain the concept of the Holy Trinity, which refers to the combination of the Father,Son, nad the Holy Spirit. The shamrock is, therefore, strongly associated with Saint Patrick’s Day.
People dress up and there are street parades, fireworks, and lots of Guinness drinking.
It is Karst area(360 sq km – less than 1% of the island), it is covered with limestone blocks.
In the cracks are unique flora – 75% of Irish plant species, a combination of artcic, alpine and subtropical flora.
It is situated in Burren. It is also called Portal Tomb. It looks like a big table. There is the stone at the top – the weight is 5 tons. It built 3,000 years ago, 30 people were buried under it.
CLIFFS OF MOHER
It is 214m high, it is 8km along the coast of the Atlantic. Nesting place of many sea birds, e.g. puffins, auks, seagulls. The cliffs are composed of sandstone and slate.
KILLARNEY NATIONAL PARK
There are 3 lakes – the largest is Lough Leane. You can find there Ross Castle, there were formationed in the 14th century, it was the last Irish stronghold during Cromwell’s conquest of Ireland
RING OF KERRY
Iveragh Peninsula, also called Little Finland (plenty of lakes). There are beautiful scenery, paradise for hikers, fishermen, nice beaches. Waterville – often visited by Chaplin.
It is Bohemian town with many ppubs, university. Claddagh rings: joined hands(friendship) holding a heart (love) with a crown (faithfulness). It is a city of clans (merchant families), which is formed in middle ages. There is Lynch’s Castle – it came from 15th to 18th centuries – it was built by influential Galway family. A legend told – in 1493 Mayor Lynch found his own son guilty of murder. Nobody wanted to execute him so father carried it out himself.
There are many castles and ruins of castles. Dunguaire comes from the 16th century. Medieval banquets are for tourists.
He is an Ireland’s patron saint. He was born in England, as a boy captured by Irish traders, 6 years of slavery in Ireland, escaped, studied in France (priest), returned to Ireland. He converted Ireland to Christianity 432-461AD. He used shamrock to explain the concept of the Trinity. He banished all snakes.
The day is celebrated on March 17 (St. Patrick’s death in 461 AD). With this day are associated parades, concerts and fireworks. It is conneted with wearingm eating or drinking something green, shamrocks on faces. The festival is celebrated also in the USA, Canada, Australia and other countries.
IRISH FOLK MUSIC
Irish traditional instruments are harp, pipes, flute, fiddle and bodhran. Today are also typical instruments as accordion nad guitar.
Typical Irish dance is step dancing. Arms are kept still, only work of feet (the current record is 38 taps in 1 second). Michael Flatley : Riverdance, he is a Lord of the Dance.
There are in wet moorlands – layers of peat, many feet thick. It used as fuel in houses (in the past), in power plants (industrial digging). It used in horticulture.
It was developed since 1759 – Arthur Guinness. It is the 6th biggest brewery in the world. The 10 million bottles are drunk every day in 150 countries.
It is also called Uisge beatha = water of life. The difference between Irish whiskey and Scotch whisky. It is distilled 3 times (Scotch twice). The peat is rarely used in the malting process (smoother finish than Scotch).
BRÚ NA BÓINNE
It is a world heritage site and one of the largest and the most important prehistoric megalithic sites in Europe. They are in the valley of the River Boyne. It is a complex of Neolithic mounds, standing stones. It contains 40 passage graves with burial chambers. Some of them are older than Egyptian pyramids, come from 3500 BC. It was the most famous – Newgrange, Knowth, Dowth.
It was built about 3200BC. It is a large circular mound with a stone passageway and chambers inside (80m in diametre). It was probably a burial place for kings or there were religious rituals. On the winter salstice, at 8.20, rays of the sun start lighting the long passage. When they reach the main chamber, they light it for 17 mins. It was decorated with white quartz.
It is the largest of the passage graves in Brú na Bóinne. It comes from between 2500 and 2000 BC. It consists of 1 large mound and 17 smaller satellite tombs. The mound contains 2 passages placed along an east-west line. They lead to a burial chamber. It is encircled by 127 kerbstones.
The name Glean Dá Loch = glen of two lakes (Upper abd Lower). The St Kevin came here in 498 seeking refuge from society, to meditate abd live a hermit life in a cave. Soon his followers came. A monastery was founded in the 6th century.
The Round Tower: It is about 30m high, its entrance is 3.5m from the basem comes from the 10th century. The purpose: a bell tower, also as a store house or a place of refuge. St Kevin’s Church or ‚‚Kitchen‘‘ (the reason for this name is not known). It is the oldest part – the 11th century. It has a stone roof and belfry.
There is a beautiful scenery. There is situated St. Kevin’s Bed (a cave), St. Kevin’sCell(founation stones of a shelter). Reefert Church came from the 11th century, a burial place of chiefs of a clan.
ROCK OF CASHEL
According to a legend, St. Patrick preached here and baptized local Irish kings. It was the traditional seat of kings of Munster. In 1647 Oliver Cromwell’s troops of looted this place and many buildings were destroyed. The majority of buildings came from the 12th or 13th century. The Round Tower – the oldest building, dry stone method. The Cathedral and Castle. Cormac’s Chapel – it contains one of the best preserved Irish Romanesque frescoes.
The coast of Canada(Newfoundland) was discovered by the English (Italian seaman in the service of the King of England – Giovanni Gabotto – John Cabbot). But the first permanent settlers were French – in the 17th century. Anglo-French rivalry in Canada resulted in the defeat of the French and in 1763 Canada became a British colony. In 1867 the British Parliament passed an act, under which Canada was granted self-government and became the first Dominion in the British Empire.
Present – day Canada is politically divided into 10 provinces and 3 territories : Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland, Quebeck (kwi’bek), Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, British Columbia.
3 territories: Yukon Territory, North-West Territory, since 1999 Nunavut
Canada is the second largest country in the world, but most of the territory is very thinly populated. The population is concentrated in a comparratively narrow belk close to the US border. The most densely populated provincies are Ontario and Quebec.
The western half of Canada is mountainous (the Cordilleras). Between the eastern lowlands and the Cordilleras there is a region of prairies. This is the principal agricultural area (wheat-growing). The prinicipal rivers: the Mackenzie, the St. Lawrence, the Fraser River.
Lakes: the northern part of the Great Lakes (not Michigan)+ many other lakes
Climate is continental, but on the Pacific ocean the climate is milder. In the uninhabited North the winters are very severe (arctic climate).
There are resources such as timber(1/3 of the country is covered with forests), uranium, non-ferrous metals, precious metals, coal, iron ore, natural gas.
In 1991 the population of Canada was 27 million. Vast stretches of land is uninhabited (only some Indians and Eskimos).
English is the mother tongue of the majority of Canadians. 30 per cent are French Canadians. Most of them live in the province of Quebec. Both English and French are the official languages.
The federal capital is Otawa.
The largest towns are Montrealm Toronto.
THE NATIONAL ECONOMY
Canada is a highly developed industrial and agrarian country. The main industries are wood and paper industry, food iindustrym engineering and mining.
Agriculture: Canada is the largest wheat producer. The principal fishery areas are the coasts of Newfoundland and the Pacific coast.
THE SYSTEM OF GOVERNMENT
Canada is a federation of 10provincies.
The Federal Parliament
As in all the British Dominions, the executive power is nominally in the hands of the Queen of England, represented by the Governor General, but actually: the Canadian Prime Minister and his Cabinet.
New Zealand is a beautiful country on the other side of the world from us here in Europe. It is a very unusual country. The first people to settle in N.Z. were Polynezian tribes – the Maoris (before 1,000 AD), the first Europeans – Dutch (A.Tasman), English (James Cook) 1769. The colonization was in the 19th century.
In 1907 New Zealand was granted the status of a Dominion.
N.Z. is an archipelago consisting of two large islands separated by Cook Strait (North Island and South Island) and a small island (Steward Is.). The density of population is very low. The country is predominantly mountainous. The North Island is famous for its hot springs, geysers. The South Island has fertile plains and high mountains, the Southern Alps (skiing, mountaineering).
N.Z. has a very pleasant, healthy, temperate climate with plenty of sunshine and good rainfall, with warm summers and mild winters. That’s why N.Z. has the leading world position in grassland farming.
Population: 3,4 million in 1990
The largest town: Auckland
The capital: Wellington
Most of the people in New Zealand are from European families, mainly British, that came to the country over 200 years ago. There are also many Maori people. Maoris are the original people of New Zealand. They have lived in the country since at least the 1300’s.
Maori people have their own customs, traditions and their own language. Today most Maori can speak English. They enjoy singing and dancing at their traditional meeting places called Maraes. The most famous Maori dance is called the ‚‚the Haka‘‘.
New Zealand consists of two main islands. They are known as North Island and South Island. New Zealand contains mountains, lakes and rivers like most countries. New Zealand has very specific type of scenery in the world. The mountains of the South Island are known as the Southern Alps. The highest mountains are volcanic. There are some volcanoes that are still smoking.
The New Zealanders love sport. They are very proud of their rugby team called the ‚‚All Blacks‘‘ (they wear black shirts, shorts and socks). Like many of the Commonwealth countries cricket is the national summer sport. New Zealanders love extreme sports. The mountaineering is very popular for high mountains. Sir Edmund Hilary, the first man to successfully climb Mount Everest in 1953, was from New Zealand. New Zealanders also invented bungee jumping.
New Zealand is home to some amazing animal life. The national symbol of New Zealand is the kiwi bird. Kiwis are unusual birds – they have bad eyesight and no wings. They can also sleep for twenty hours a day. New Zealand is home of the tuatara. This lizard like creature lays eggs in burrows that it shares with seabirds. Tuataras have lived in New Zealand for over 200 million years. There are not many left now and so they are protected.
THE NATIONAL ECONOMY OF N.Z.
N.Z. is a rich agricultural country. It has a relatively high standard of living.
N.Z. is primarily a grazing country and specializes in livestock breeding (cattle and sheep). Grass is ‚‚the green gold‘‘ of N.Z. and grazzing is possible all the year round. Highly efficient grassland farming has enabled New Zealand to become the world biggest exporter of meat (lamb, mutton, beef) and dairy products (butter, cheese, milk powders) and the second largest exportet of wool.
REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA
Population: 39,5 million in 1990
Capital: Cape Town
Other towns: Johannesburg, Durban
The area was originally inhabited by Kung and Hottentots. At 16th-17th century century they were attracted by the Bantu people from the north and the whites from the south. The British power started at the beginning of the 19th century. In 1836 some 10,000 Dutch, wishing to escape from British rule, set out north and foundad the republic of Transvaal and the Orange Free State.
The discovery of diamonds and gold attracted prospectors, who came into conflict with the Dutch farmers (Boers). After several attempts by the British to occupy these territories the open ‚‚Boer War‘‘(1899-1902) was won by Britain.
The predominant power of the whites led to open apartheid in 1948. In the 1950’s the African National Congress (ANC) led a campaign of civil disobedience. The ANC leader Nelson Handela was sentenced to life imprisonment in 1964. He became a central symbol of black opposition to the apartheia regime, remaining in prison until 1990. In 1991 President F.W. de Klerk announced the intended repeal of all remaining apartheid laws. This led to the 1994 election victory of the ANC. Nelson Mandela became the President of the country.
Australia was discovered by Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch navigators. An early name for Australia was New Holland. Captain James Cook explored the eastern coast in 1970, but actual colonization started in 1788, when a fleet of ships brought the first settlers and convicts from England. The first colony was called New South Wales. It was a penal colony at first and many of the first permanent settlers were ex-convicts. The discovery of gold in the middle of the 19th century attracted many immigrants.
In 1901 a new British Dominion known as the Commonwealth of Australia was formed. It consists of 6 states (New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, Queensland, Western Australia, Tasmania – an island) and 2 territories (Australian Capital Territory, the Northern Territory).
Australia us a continent lying in the southern hemisphere between the Indian and Pacific Oceans. Its vast areas are completely uninhabited. The population is concentrated on the coast, especially in the south-east. Australia is the flattest of the continents – western part – a flat plateau, only in the east the Australian Alps with Mount Kosciusto (2,238m). The largest river is the Murray. Most Australian rivers are small creeks which dry up when there is not enough rain.
The northern part of Australia lies in the tropical climate zone, the rest – the sub-tropical or temperate zone. 1/3(one third) of Australia – desert or semi- desert.
The principal mineral resources are: iron ore, coal, lead, zinc, copper. All resources have not been surveyed yet. The main source of timber is the eucalyptus tree.
Population in 1991 was 17 million inhabitants. They are nearly all of British descent. The Aborigines – original dark-skinned race. They originally lived as hunters and food gatherers (but some of their tods are ingenious e.g. the boomerang). The most populated is the South-eastern belt (Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbone) and the south-western tip(Parth).
The federal capital is Canberra.
THE NATIONAL ECONOMY
Australia has reached a high degree of development, especially in agriculture. Sheep-raising is the most important branch of Australian economy. Australia is the greatest producer of wool in the world. Other branches – cattle raising, crop prodution (wheat,barley).
The system of Government
The commonwealth of Australia is a federation of six states. There is a federal Government and each state has its own Government and Constitutions.
The legal power: the Federal Government
The executive power: formally vested in the Governor General, who represents the Crown. But the actual head of the executive is the Australian Prime Minister.
It is also the home to kangaroos and koalas. Tropical paradises as well as dry and very hot areas or hosting the Olympic Games 2000 are another remarkable facts about this country. Australia is one of the most beautiful places in the world.
Australia has a population of around 18.5 million people and is part of the British Commonwealth. It is the driest continent in the world – thirty percent of the area gets less than 250mm of rain each year.
Australia consists of seven parts. The whole western part is called Western Australia. In the middle are Northern Territory and South Australia. The Eastern part is divided into Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria. The last part of the country is Tasmania, which is an island located of the east coast.
The hottest temperature recorded in Australia was in Queensland and lowest was in New South Wales.
An interesting thing for Europeans is that in Australia the seasons are just opposite to oursl
Australian coutryside can be divided into two main areas. One is the inner kand that is very dry and sandy. Almost no vegetation grows here and very few peoplelive in this area. Hard leaked evergreen plants like eucalyptus or palm trees. Rain forests cover about 9% of the continent.
The country is also well-known for its beaches, which are very popular among Australians and tourists. In Queensland, the most tropical part of Australia, is a set of coral reefs. It is called the Great Barrier Reef and is the biggest reef in the world.
Australian history goes hand in hand with its original inhabitants who are called aborigines. Discoveries of aboriginal art indicate that they may have inhabited Australia for more than 176,000 years, and they had arrived by watercraft. The Sydney region, which local aborigines call Warrane, has been inhabited for at least 50,000 years.
The west and north coasts of Australia were visited quite frequently by Europeans in the 17th ccentury, but the east coast was first seen in 1770, when well-known Captain James Cook came here, claimed the whole east coast for King George III and called it New South Wales.
Australia has a lot of unique wildlife. We can find there animals such as emus, cockatoos.
THE CAPITAL CITIES
Canberra is the capital of Australia with a population 307,700 people. The federal government is run from Canberra. The city was founded in 1928. The name of the city is an Aboriginal word meaning ‚‚Meeting Place‘‘.
Sydney has a population of around 3,9 million people, is the capital city of New South Wales and the oldest city in Australia. In 1850, its first university was built. The shores of Sydney Harbour are 240km long. The most famous building in Sydney is the Opera House, whih was built in 1973 and cost 100 million dollars. The oldest part of the city is called The Rocks. In Sydney were Olympic Games in 2000.
Melbourne, the capital city of Victoria, has a population over 3,2 million. It is Australia second largest city and the only city in the country in which trams are still used. It has one of the largest Greek populations in the world and a large Italian community.
Brisbane has a population of over 1,5million people and is the capital of Queensland. It has a sub-tropical climate wuth average temperatures between 15 and 25 degrees Celsius.
Perth is the capital city of Western Australia.
Adelaide was named after queen Adelalde who was the wife of King William IV. It is the capital of South Australia, which is the driest of all Australian states and territories. It is now Australian’s fifth largest city just after Perth. Adelaide is known for its botanical garden which is the biggest in southern hemisphere.
Hobart is the capital of Tasmania, which is the smallest of all seven states. It is the second oldest of all Australian capitals and was established in 1803.
Darwin is the capital of Northern Territory. Darwin is the smallest of all the capital cities. During World War II, woman, children and older man were evacuated from Darwin bacause the first Japanese attack on Australia was the bombing of Darwin Harbour.
There are many interesting opportunities for spending free time in most Australian cities, especially if you are by the ocean. A large number of beaches located mainly in New South Wales and Queensland are very exotic. Almost everyone in Australia goes to these beaches for surfing, swimming, skateboarding, jogging or just to lie on the beach amd to have fun with their friends and families.
In Australia is a typical cooking such as outdoor grill, called barbecue.
- ROCK DREAM
→Uluru or Ayers rock
Uluru is listed as a World Heritagy Site and is a approximately 470kilometres from Alice Springs in Australia’s ‚red heart‘ centre. It is the second largest monolith in the world. The area has many springs, waterholes, rock caves and ancient painrings.
- OCEAN DREAM
Australia’s waters are home to more than 4000 species of fish including 166 species of shark.
→The Great Barrier Reef
Situated off the east coast of Australia is one of the wonders of the natural world. It is the world’s largest coral reef ecosystem and was declared a World Heritage Area in 1981. It abounds in wildlife, including green turtles, varieties of dolphins and whales, more than 1500 fish species, 4000 types of mollusk and more than 200 species of birds.
The British Empire searched for goods to trade, like silk or precious metals in India and the Far East, ansd lands to settle, in America and Australia.