The United Kingdom the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, sometimes referred to as Britain, is a sovereign country located off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland, many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state, the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world; the Irish Sea lies between Great Ireland. With an area of 242,500 square kilometres, the United Kingdom is the 78th-largest sovereign state in the world, it is the 22nd-most populous country, with an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017. The UK is constitutional monarchy; the current monarch is Queen Elizabeth II, who has reigned since 1952, making her the longest-serving current head of state.
The United Kingdom's capital and largest city is London, a global city and financial centre with an urban area population of 10.3 million. Other major urban areas in the UK include Greater Manchester, the West Midlands and West Yorkshire conurbations, Greater Glasgow and the Liverpool Built-up Area; the United Kingdom consists of four constituent countries: England, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Their capitals are London, Edinburgh and Belfast, respectively. Apart from England, the countries have their own devolved governments, each with varying powers, but such power is delegated by the Parliament of the United Kingdom, which may enact laws unilaterally altering or abolishing devolution; the nearby Isle of Man, Bailiwick of Guernsey and Bailiwick of Jersey are not part of the UK, being Crown dependencies with the British Government responsible for defence and international representation. The medieval conquest and subsequent annexation of Wales by the Kingdom of England, followed by the union between England and Scotland in 1707 to form the Kingdom of Great Britain, the union in 1801 of Great Britain with the Kingdom of Ireland created the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.
Five-sixths of Ireland seceded from the UK in 1922, leaving the present formulation of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. There are fourteen British Overseas Territories, the remnants of the British Empire which, at its height in the 1920s, encompassed a quarter of the world's land mass and was the largest empire in history. British influence can be observed in the language and political systems of many of its former colonies; the United Kingdom is a developed country and has the world's fifth-largest economy by nominal GDP and ninth-largest economy by purchasing power parity. It has a high-income economy and has a high Human Development Index rating, ranking 14th in the world, it was the world's first industrialised country and the world's foremost power during the 19th and early 20th centuries. The UK remains a great power, with considerable economic, military and political influence internationally, it is sixth in military expenditure in the world. It has been a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council since its first session in 1946.
It has been a leading member state of the European Union and its predecessor, the European Economic Community, since 1973. The United Kingdom is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, the Council of Europe, the G7, the G20, NATO, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and the World Trade Organization; the 1707 Acts of Union declared that the kingdoms of England and Scotland were "United into One Kingdom by the Name of Great Britain". The term "United Kingdom" has been used as a description for the former kingdom of Great Britain, although its official name from 1707 to 1800 was "Great Britain"; the Acts of Union 1800 united the kingdom of Great Britain and the kingdom of Ireland in 1801, forming the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. Following the partition of Ireland and the independence of the Irish Free State in 1922, which left Northern Ireland as the only part of the island of Ireland within the United Kingdom, the name was changed to the "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland".
Although the United Kingdom is a sovereign country, Scotland and Northern Ireland are widely referred to as countries. The UK Prime Minister's website has used the phrase "countries within a country" to describe the United Kingdom; some statistical summaries, such as those for the twelve NUTS 1 regions of the United Kingdom refer to Scotland and Northern Ireland as "regions". Northern Ireland is referred to as a "province". With regard to Northern Ireland, the descriptive name used "can be controversial, with the choice revealing one's political preferences"; the term "Great Britain" conventionally refers to the island of Great Britain, or politically to England and Wales in combination. However, it is sometimes used as a loose synonym for the United Kingdom as a whole; the term "Britain" is used both as a synonym for Great Britain, as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Usage is mixed, with the BBC preferring to use Britain as shorthand only for Great Britain and the UK Government, while accepting that both terms refer to the United K
The Plymouth Brethren are a conservative, low church, non-conformist, evangelical Christian movement whose history can be traced to Dublin, Ireland in the late 1820s, originating from Anglicanism. The group emphasizes sola scriptura, the belief that the Bible is the supreme authority for church doctrine and practice over and above any other source of authority. Plymouth Brethren see themselves as a network of like-minded free churches, not as a Christian denomination. An influential figure among the early Plymouth Brethren was John Nelson Darby; the movement refused to take any denominational name to a stance that some still maintain. The title "The Brethren," however, is one that many of their number are comfortable with, in that the Bible designates all believers as "brethren": "one is your Master Christ. Brethren assemblies are divided into two major branches: the Open Brethren and the Exclusive Brethren, following a schism that took place in 1848. Both of these main branches are themselves divided into several smaller streams, with varying degrees of communication and overlap among them.
The best-known and oldest distinction between Open and Exclusive assemblies is in the nature of relationships among their local churches. Open Brethren assemblies function as networks of like-minded independent local churches. Exclusive Brethren are connectional and so feel under obligation to recognize and adhere to the disciplinary actions of other associated assemblies, thus for Exclusive Brethren disciplinary action involves denying the individual participation in the breaking of bread or Lord's table. This is a Sunday morning service of prayer, singing and taking communion, with important assembly-related announcements given at the end. Exclusion from it is a major issue. Discipline among Brethren may involve formal social ostracism or "shunning" to varying degrees, dependent upon which kind of Brethren group it is. For instance, people placed "under discipline" may be asked not to attend any group functions which are purely social, people may decline to eat or shake hands with members who are under discipline.
One practical result of this among Open Brethren is that, should a member be disciplined in one assembly, other Open assemblies aware of that disciplining would not automatically feel any binding obligation to deny that person participation in their breaking of bread service, as long as their leadership does not consider whatever caused the disciplinary action a serious issue. A numerically small movement known as the Needed Truth Brethren emerged from the Open Brethren around 1892 in an attempt to address the problem of making discipline more effective. Reasons for being put under discipline by both the Open and Exclusive Brethren include disseminating gross Scriptural or doctrinal error, in the eyes of the fellowship, or being involved in what is deemed sexual immorality. Being accused of irregular or illegal financial dealings may result in being put under discipline. In Exclusive meetings, a member under discipline in one assembly would not be accepted in another assembly, as one assembly respects the decisions made by another assembly.
Exclusive assemblies are much more adherent to the shunning of the offending party, using as guidance instructions given in Leviticus 14:34–48 for dealing with a "leprous house". In extreme cases, members may be asked to divorce members of their immediate families. Another less clear difference between assemblies lies in their approaches to collaborating with other Christians. Many Open Brethren will hold gospel meetings, youth events, or other activities in partnership with non-Brethren Evangelical Christian churches. More conservative Open Brethren—and the majority of Exclusive Brethren—tend not to support activities outside their own meetings. Since the formation of the Exclusives in 1848, there have been a great number of subdivisions into separate groups, but most groups have since rejoined, with the exception of the separatist Plymouth Brethren Christian Church; this group is informally known as "Jimite" from their following of James Taylor, Jr at the division in 1970, they are referred to as the Raven-Taylor-Hales Exclusive Brethren.
This group practices extreme separation, other Brethren groups accuse it of being a cult. Most other Exclusive groups prefer not to be known by any name and are only given such designations by non-members. There are some movements with strong Brethren connections; the Assemblies Jehovah Shammah of India, for example, are regarded as Open Brethren because of their general willingness to work and worship together with other Evangelical Christians, because their foreign connections tend to be with Open Brethren. The ecclesiology, has more in common with that of the Exclusive Brethren. Both Open and Exclusive assemblies maintain relations within their respective groups through common support of missionaries, area conferences, the travelling ministries of "commended workers", "laboring brothers", itinerant evangelists; some Exclusives hold t
The Exclusive Brethren are a subset of the Christian evangelical movement described as the Plymouth Brethren. They are distinguished from the Open Brethren from whom they separated in 1848; the Exclusive Brethren are now divided into a number of groups, most of which differ on minor points of doctrine or practice. The best-known of these through media attention, is the Raven-Taylor-Hales group, now known as the Plymouth Brethren Christian Church, which maintains the doctrine of uncompromising separation from the world based on their interpretation of 2 Corinthians 6 and 2 Timothy 2, believing that attendance at the Communion Service, the'Lord's Supper', governs and limits their relationship with others other Brethren groups; these brethren have one fellowship in some nineteen countries — including France, Spain, Denmark, the Netherlands, Sweden and Argentina, but they are more numerous in Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, North America where they are referred to just as the Exclusive Brethren or Brethren.
The Plymouth Brethren split into Exclusive and Open Brethren in 1848 when George Müller refused to accept John Nelson Darby's view of the relationship between local assemblies following difficulties in the Plymouth meeting. Brethren that held Muller's congregational view became known as "Open", those holding Darby's'connexional' view, became known as "Exclusive" or "Darbyite" Brethren. Darby's circular on 26 August 1848, cutting off not only Bethesda but all assemblies who received anyone who had attended Bethesda, was to define the essential characteristic of "exclusivism" that he was to pursue for the rest of his life, he set it out in detail in a pamphlet he issued in 1853 entitled Separation from Evil - God’s Principle of Unity. But a tension had existed since the earliest times, as set out in a letter from Anthony Norris Groves in 1836 to Darby: Some will not have me hold communion with the Scotts, because their views are not satisfactory about the Lord’s Supper. On my principles, I receive them all.
For most of his life, Darby was able to hold the exclusives together by his great learning and tireless activity, although several longtime members had seceded after accusing him of similar errors about the nature of Christ's humanity of which he had accused Benjamin Wills Newton. The Central Meeting in London would communicate with the other assemblies and most difficulties were smoothed over, but shortly before he died in 1882, things started to fall apart. It all started from an initiative in 1879 of Edward Cronin, one of the Dublin founding members, that paralleled Darby's initiation of a new assembly at Plymouth thirty years before; some members had left a failing assembly in Cronin travelled down to break bread with them. When he reported back to London, different assemblies took differing views of his action. Though Darby was sympathetic in private he attacked him fiercely in public. By 1881 an assembly in Ramsgate had itself split over the issue and the division, over an issue not of doctrine or principle but church governance, became irrevocable.
The excluded party became known as the "Kelly Brethren", although William Kelly remained devoted to the memory of Darby and edited his collected papers. But after another division in 1885, three years after Darby's death, when a London assembly excommunicated a brother in Reading over the "standing" of a Christian, the minority in the resultant split adopted a more "open" approach to fellowship, as did those who followed Grant in America. A more serious split occurred in 1890 around the teaching of F. E. Raven of Greenwich. "The seceders from his communion falsely accused him of denying the orthodox doctrine of the union of the Divine and the human natures in the Man Christ Jesus – not indeed in a Unitarian, but in a Gnostic sense." After furious strife in which the leading opponent was William Lowe, many of the remaining assemblies in Britain stayed with Raven but those on the continent separated whilst the American assemblies were split. Not all of the people remaining in fellowship with Raven agreed with him and this led in 1908-9 to further splits, initiated by actions of the Glanton assembly in Northumberland over dissensions in the neighbouring Alnwick assembly.
Once more assemblies had to decide which side to support and this included those as far away as Melbourne, Australia. Thus the Ravens and the Glantons were established. In the same year a festering disagreement in Tunbridge Wells led to a minor breakaway from the Lowe group by a number of assemblies. A further division took place in 1970. By this time, James Taylor, Jr. had come to control. At a meeting in Aberdeen, Scotland, on 25 July, a drunk Taylor publicly insulted members, calling them "bums", "bastards", other such names; that weekend, he was found in bed with a married woman, both of them naked. His host published a long letter of protest, sent to the New York assembly. Taylor rejected both accusations as lies and the incident definitively divided the Brethren membership worldwide. Few based near the scene of the events stayed in fellowship with Taylor — only two families in Aberdeen and 200 out of 3,000 members in Scotland remained. Altogether, over 200 such assemblies in England and Ireland seceded from the Taylor group, according to a 1971 listing.
Others those further afield, believed Taylor's line that he was a pure man and that this incident was used by God to expose his enemies
Hanging is the suspension of a person by a noose or ligature around the neck. The Oxford English Dictionary states that hanging in this sense is "specifically to put to death by suspension by the neck", though it also referred to crucifixion and death by impalement in which the body would remain "hanging". Hanging has been a common method of capital punishment since medieval times, is the primary execution method in numerous countries and regions; the first known account of execution by hanging was in Homer's Odyssey. In this specialised meaning of the common word hang, the past and past participle is hanged instead of hung. Hanging is a common method of suicide in which a person applies a ligature to the neck and brings about unconsciousness and death by suspension. Partial suspension or partial weight-bearing on the ligature is sometimes used in prisons, mental hospitals or other institutions, where full suspension support is difficult to devise, because high ligature points have been removed.
There are numerous methods of hanging in execution which instigate death either by the fracturing of the spine or by strangulation. The short drop is a method of hanging performed by placing the condemned prisoner on a stool, the top of a ladder, the back of a cart, horse, or other vehicle, with the noose around the neck; the object is moved away, leaving the person dangling from the rope. Suspended by the neck, the weight of the body is used to tighten the noose around the trachea and neck structure causing strangulation and subsequently death; this takes between ten and twenty minutes, with unconsciousness occurring within 6–15 seconds. Before 1850, the short drop was the standard method for hanging, is still common in suicides and extrajudicial hangings which do not benefit from the specialised equipment and drop-length calculation tables used by the newer methods. A short drop variant is the Austro-Hungarian "pole" method, called Würgegalgen, in which the following steps take place: The condemned is made to stand before a specialized vertical pole or pillar 10 feet in height.
A rope is routed through a pulley at the base of the pole. The condemned is hoisted to the top of pole by means of a sling running across the chest and under the armpits. A narrow diameter noose is looped around the prisoner's neck secured to a hook mounted at the top of the pole; the chest sling is released, the prisoner is jerked downward by the assistant executioners via the foot rope. The executioner stands on a stepped platform 4 feet high beside the condemned, guides the head downward with his hand simultaneous to the efforts of his assistants; this method was also adopted by the successor states, most notably by Czechoslovakia. Nazi war criminal Karl Hermann Frank, executed in 1946 in Prague, was among 1,000 condemned people executed in this manner in Czechoslovakia; the standard drop involves a drop of between 4 and 6 feet and came into use from 1866, when the scientific details were published by an Irish doctor, Samuel Haughton. Its use spread to English-speaking countries and those where judicial systems had an English origin.
It was considered a humane improvement on the short drop because it was intended to be enough to break the person's neck, causing immediate unconsciousness and rapid brain death. This method was used to execute condemned Nazis under United States jurisdiction after the Nuremberg Trials including Joachim von Ribbentrop and Ernst Kaltenbrunner. In the execution of Ribbentrop, historian Giles MacDonogh records that: "The hangman botched the execution and the rope throttled the former foreign minister for twenty minutes before he expired." A Life magazine report on the execution says: "The trap fell open and with a sound midway between a rumble and a crash, Ribbentrop disappeared. The rope quivered for a time stood tautly straight." This process known as the measured drop, was introduced to Britain in 1872 by William Marwood as a scientific advance on the standard drop. Instead of everyone falling the same standard distance, the person's height and weight were used to determine how much slack would be provided in the rope so that the distance dropped would be enough to ensure that the neck was broken, but not so much that the person was decapitated.
The careful placement of the eye or knot of the noose contributed to breaking the neck. Prior to 1892, the drop was between four and ten feet, depending on the weight of the body, was calculated to deliver a force of 1,260 lbf, which fractured the neck at either the 2nd and 3rd or 4th and 5th cervical vertebrae; this force resulted in some decapitations, such as the infamous case of Black Jack Ketchum in New Mexico Territory in 1901, owing to a significant weight gain while in custody not having been factored into the drop calculations. Between 1892 and 1913, the length of the drop was shortened to avoid decapitation. After 1913, other factors were taken into account, the force delivered was reduced to about 1,000 lbf; the decapitation of Eva Dugan during a botched hanging in 1930 led the state of Arizona to switch to the gas chamber as its primary execution method, on the grounds that it was believed more humane. One of the more recent decapitations as a result of the long drop occurred when Barzan Ibrahim al-Tikriti was hanged in Iraq in 2007
Andover is a town in the English county of Hampshire. The town is on the River Anton, a major source of the Test, 18 miles west of the town of Basingstoke, both major rail stops, it is 15 miles NNW of the city of Winchester, 25 miles north of the city of Southampton and 65 miles WSW of London. Andover is twinned with the towns of Redon in France, Goch in Germany, Andover, Massachusetts in the United States, its name is recorded in Old English in 955 as Andeferas, is thought to be of Celtic origin: compare Welsh onn dwfr = "ash water". Andover's first mention in history is in 950 when King Edred is recorded as having built a royal hunting lodge there. In 962 King Edgar called a meeting of the Saxon'parliament' at his hunting lodge near Andover. Of more importance was the baptism, in 994 of a Viking king named Olaf; the identity of that man was either Olof Skötkonung. The baptism was part of a deal with King Ethelred II of England whereby he stopped ravaging England and returned home. Olav Tryggvason became king of Norway in 995 and tried to convert his country to Christianity before his death in the Battle of Svolder in 1000.
Olof Skötkonung was king of Sweden and became its first Christian king and began c. 995 to mint Sweden's first coins with the help of English expertise. At the time of the Domesday Book Andover had 107 adult male inhabitants and had a total population of about 500, it was a large settlement. Andover had six watermills which ground grain to flour; the town's relative isolation implies a market for flour. In 1175 King Richard I sold Andover a charter granting certain townspeople rights and forming a merchant guild which took over the governmental rights, see ancient borough; the members elected two officials, who ran the town. In 1201 King John gave the merchants the right to collect royal taxes in Andover themselves. In 1256 Henry III gave the townspeople the right to hold a court and try criminals for offences committed in Andover. Andover sent MPs to the parliaments of 1295 and 1302–1307; the town was ravaged by two serious fires, one in 1141 and another in 1435. Andover remained a small market town.
Processing wool appears to have been the main industry and street names in the area of the town known as "Sheep Fair" commemorate this. A weekly market, an annual fair were held; as well as the Church of St Mary the town had a priory and a hospital run by monks, dedicated to St John the Baptist, a lepers hostel to St Mary Magdalene. In 1538 during the Reformation Henry VIII closed the hospital. In 1571 a free school for the boys of Andover was established in the grounds of St Mary's Church; this in time became Andover Grammar School, in the 1970s it became John Hanson Community School. The school has occupied various sites in the town over the course of its history and is located in Floral Way. In 1599 the town received a new charter from Elizabeth I; the merchants guild was made a corporation and the number of annual fairs was increased from one to three. Like other towns Andover suffered from outbreaks of plague. There were outbreaks in 1603-5, 1625–6 and 1636. During the 18th century, being on the main Exeter – Salisbury – London road, the place became a refuelling or overnight stop for stagecoaches and other passing trade.
More than 30 coaches passed through the town each day. In 1789 a canal to Southampton was opened, though this was never a commercial success and closed in 1859. In 1836 the Borough established a small police force: for the most part a gaoler. Andover was linked to Basingstoke and thus to London on its new railway to Salisbury when Andover junction station was opened on 3 July 1854. A railway from the 1860s ran to Southampton, built on the bed of the canal, for about 100 years, until 1964; the land, together with the adjacent gasworks and P. M. Coombes woodyards, was sold to the TSB Trust Company who built their headquarters there; the population grew from 3,304 in 1801 to 5,501 in 1871. During the 19th century the town acquired all the usual additions, a theatre in 1803, gas street lighting in 1838, a fire station and cottage hospital in 1877, a swimming pool opened in 1885 and a recreation ground opened in 1887. A water company was formed in 1875 to provide piped water to the town and a system of sewers and drains was built in 1899–1902.
The public library opened in 1897. Despite this burgeoning of the amenities of the town in 1845 a notorious scandal involving the hardships endured by the inmates of the workhouse led indirectly to reform of the Poor Law Act, principally involving segregation of a now-obligatory infirmary for local people from the workhouse for the able-bodied, but better governance; the town was one of the boroughs reformed by the Municipal Reform Act 1835. In 1846, the town came to public attention; the Andover workhouse scandal brought to light evidence of beatings, sexual abuse and general mistreatment of workhouse inmates by the overseers. The woollen industry had declined but new industries took its place. Taskers Waterloo Ironworks opened at Anna Valley in flourished. Many examples of the machinery produced by Taskers can be seen at the Milestones Museum in Basingstoke; the town's largest employer is the Ministry of Defence. RAF Andover was opened on Andover Airfield, to the south of the town, during the First World War and became the site of the RAF Staff College.
In 1926, the Andover War Memorial Hospital was opened by Field Marshall Allanby. The hospital provides inpatient re