REFERAT ENGLEZA: LONDON, CAPITAL OF UNITED KINGDOM

Publicat: 15 Ian 2009 00:00

London (England), city, capital of the United Kingdom. It is situated in south-eastern England at the head of the River Thames estuary. Settled by the Romans as an important shipping point for crops and minerals, it gradually developed into the wealthy capital of a thriving industrial and agricultural nation. The expansion in the 19th century of the British Empire increased Londons influence still further. Since World War II the citys prominence on the international stage has diminished, but it remains a flourishing financial centre and home to one of the worlds most important stock exchanges. In addition, it is the foremost tourist destination in Britain, a centre of academic excellence, and one of the cultural capitals of the world-well deserving of the observation by Samuel Johnson that: "When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life".The term "City of London", or "the City", is applied only to a small area known as the Square Mile (2.59 sq km/1 sq mi) that was the original settlement (ancient Londinium) and is now part of the financial and business district of the metropolis. The City of London and 32 surrounding boroughs constitute the Greater London metropolitan area, which covers some 1,580 sq km (620 sq mi). The 13 inner London boroughs are Camden, Hackney, Hammersmith and Fulham, Haringey, Islington, Kensington and Chelsea, Lambeth, Lewisham, Newham, Southwark, Tower Hamlets, Wandsworth, and the City of Westminster. The 19 outer boroughs are Barking and Dagenham, Barnet, Bexley, Brent, Bromley, Croydon, Ealing, Enfield, Greenwich, Harrow, Havering, Hillingdon, HPopulation Patterns and TrendsIn mid-1994 the population of Greater London was estimated at 6,967,500 (representing about 12 per cent of Britains overall population), with two thirds resident in outer London. Although the population is no longer as large as in mid-century (peaking at about 8,346,000 in the 1951 census), it has recently been increasing, rising at an average of 20,000 per year since 1984. Londons population is heavily concentrated (at about 4,409 people per sq km/11,238 per sq mi) relative to other metropolitan areas in the country.The arrival of immigrants has contributed considerably to the variations in population figures, and the capital is the most ethnically diverse region in the United Kingdom. Ethnic minority communities account for over a third of the population in the Museums and Art GalleriesLondons museums and art galleries contain some of the most comprehensive collections of objects of artistic, archaeological, scientific, historical, and general interest. The British Museum in Bloomsbury is one of the biggest and most famous museums in the world. Its collections range from Egyptian and Classical antiquities through Saxon treasures to more recent artefacts.The Victoria and Albert Museum in South Kensington is an assembly of fine and decorative art collections from all over the world. There are magnificent examples of porcelain, glass, sculpture, fabrics and costume, furniture, and musical instruments, all set in a building of Victorian grandeur. Nearby are the Museum of Natural History and the Science Museum. On the other side of London, in the City itself, is the Museum of London, which has exhibits dealing with the development of the capital from its origins to the present day.The National Gallery in Trafalgar Square contains one of the finest mixed collections of paintings in the world. Next door is the National Portrait Gallery, whose collection includes more than 9,000 portraits. The Tate Gallery, situated on the Embankment between Chelsea and Westminster, houses the largest collection of British painting from the 16th century to the present day. In 1987 an extension opened to house the paintings bequeathed to the nation by J. M. W. Turner. There are plans to establish a new Tate Gallery of Modern Art in Southwark, near the reconstructed Shakespearean theatre, the Globe.Other important collections in the capital include the Imperial War Museum, the National Army Museum, the Royal Air Force Museum, the National Maritime Museum, the Wallace Collection (of paintings, furniture, arms and armour, and objets dart), Sir John Soanes Museum (founded by the architect of the Bank of England in the City), and the London Transport Museum. The Queens Gallery in Buckingham Palace has exhibitions of pictures from the extensive royal collection. The Theatre Museum displays the history of the performing arts, while the Museum of the Moving Image traces the history of film and television.The British Library, the national library of Britain, has a collection of more than 150 million separate items. Publishers must deposit in the Library a copy of everything they publish.boroughs of Brent, Hackney, Newham, and Tower Hamlets.ounslow, Kingston upon Thames, Merton, Redbridge, Richmond upon Thames, Sutton, and Waltham Forest

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