The culture of the United Kingdom is the pattern of human activity and symbolism associated with the United Kingdom and its people. It is influenced by the UK’s history as a developed island country, a liberal democracy and a major power, its predominantly Christian religious life, and its composition of four countries—England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales—each of which has distinct customs, cultures and symbolism. The wider culture of Europe has also influenced British culture, and Humanism, Protestantism and representative democracy developed from broader Western culture.
British literature, music, cinema, art, theatre, comedy, media, television, philosophy and architecture are influential and respected across the world. The United Kingdom is also prominent in science and technology. Sport is an important part of British culture; numerous sports originated in the country, including football. The UK has been described as a “cultural superpower”, and London has been described as a world cultural capital.
The Industrial Revolution, with its origins in the UK, had a profound effect on the socio-economic and cultural conditions of the world. As a result of the British Empire, significant British influence can be observed in the language, culture and institutions of a geographically wide assortment of countries, including Australia, Canada, India, Republic of Ireland, New Zealand, Nigeria, Pakistan, South Africa and the United States. These states are sometimes collectively known as the Anglosphere, and are among Britain’s closest allies. In turn the empire also influenced British culture, particularly British cuisine.
The cultures of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are diverse and have varying degrees of overlap and distinctiveness. More details below: