Wales (Cymru) UK
Principality of Wales
Wales (Welsh: Cymru) is a principality and one of the four
constituent parts of the United Kingdom (others are England,
Scotland & Northern Ireland). Wales is located in the
south-west of Great Britain, and is bordered by England to the
east, the Bristol Channel to the south, St George's Channel in
the west, and the Irish Sea to the north.
Wales has not been
politically independent since 1282, when it was conquered by
King Edward I of England. The capital of Wales since 1955
has been Cardiff,
although Caernarfon is the location where the Prince of Wales is
invested. In 1999, the National Assembly for Wales was
formed, which has limited domestic powers and cannot make law.
The Welsh language (Cymraeg or y Gymraeg), is a
member of the
Brythonic branch of Celtic spoken natively
in the western part of Britain known as Wales (Cymru),
and in the Chubut Valley, a Welsh immigrant
colony in the Patagonia region of Argentina.
The 2001 census gives a figure
of 20.5% of the population of
Wales as Welsh speakers, out of
a population of about 3 million.
Welsh as a first language is
largely concentrated in the less
urban north and west of Wales,
Denbighshire, Anglesey (Ynys
Môn), Carmarthenshire, North
Pembrokeshire, Ceredigion, and
parts of western Glamorgan,
although first-language and
other fluent speakers can be
found throughout Wales.
councils and the Welsh Assembly
use Welsh as an official
language, issuing official
literature and publicity in
Welsh versions and all road
signs in Wales should be in
English and Welsh, including the
Welsh versions of place names.