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Motto: "Cymru am byth"{{#invoke:Category handler|main}} (Welsh)
"Wales for ever"
Anthem: "Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau{{#invoke:Category handler|main}}"
"Land of My Fathers"
Location of  Wales{{#invoke:String
Location of  Wales{{#invoke:String|rep| |2}}(dark green)

– in Europe{{#invoke:String|rep| |2}}(green & dark grey)
– in the United Kingdom{{#invoke:String|rep| |2}}(green)

Status Country
and largest city
Cardiff (Caerdydd{{#invoke:Category handler|main}})

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Official languages
Demonym Welsh (Cymry{{#invoke:Category handler|main}})
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Government Devolved parliamentary legislature within parliamentary constitutional monarchy
 -  Monarch Elizabeth II
 -  First Minister Carwyn Jones AM {{#invoke:Infobox|infobox}}
 -  Prime Minister David Cameron MP
 -  Secretary of State Stephen Crabb MP
 -  Unification by Gruffydd ap Llywelyn 1057<ref name="Wales Hist 100"/> 
 -  Statute of Rhuddlan<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation


3 March 1284 
 -  Laws in Wales Act<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation


 -  Devolution<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation


31 July 1998 
 -  Total 20,779 km2
8,022 sq mi
 -  2011 census 3,063,456
 -  Density 148/km2
381/sq mi
GDP (PPP) estimate
 -  Total £52.070 billion
 -  Per capita £16,893
Currency Pound sterling (GBP)
Time zone GMT (UTC​)
 -  Summer (DST) BST (UTC+1)
Date format dd/mm/yyyy (AD)
Drives on the left
Calling code +44
Patron saint Saint David (Dewi Sant{{#invoke:Category handler|main}})
Internet TLD
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Wales ({{#invoke:IPAc-en|main}}; Welsh: Cymru{{#invoke:Category handler|main}} [ˈkəm.rɨ]) is a country that is part of the United Kingdom and the island of Great Britain,<ref name="Stats 1">{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> bordered by England to its east, the Irish Sea to its north and west, and the Bristol Channel to its south. It had a population in 2011 of 3,063,456 and has a total area of {{safesubst:#invoke:convert|convert}}. Wales has over {{safesubst:#invoke:convert|convert}} of coastline and is largely mountainous, with its higher peaks in the north and central areas, including Snowdon (Yr Wyddfa{{#invoke:Category handler|main}}), its highest summit. The country lies within the north temperate zone and has a changeable, maritime climate.

Welsh national identity emerged among the Celtic Britons after the Roman withdrawal from Britain in the 5th century, and Wales is regarded as one of the modern Celtic nations. Llywelyn ap Gruffudd's death in 1282 marked the completion of Edward I of England's conquest of Wales, though Owain Glyndŵr briefly restored independence to what was to become modern Wales, in the early 15th century. The whole of Wales was annexed by England and incorporated within the English legal system under the Laws in Wales Acts 1535–1542. Distinctive Welsh politics developed in the 19th century. Welsh Liberalism, exemplified in the early 20th century by Lloyd George, was displaced by the growth of socialism and the Labour Party. Welsh national feeling grew over the century; Plaid Cymru was formed in 1925 and the Welsh Language Society in 1962. Established under the Government of Wales Act 1998, the National Assembly for Wales holds responsibility for a range of devolved policy matters.

At the dawn of the Industrial Revolution, development of the mining and metallurgical industries transformed the country from an agricultural society into an industrial nation; the South Wales Coalfield's exploitation caused a rapid expansion of Wales' population. Two-thirds of the population live in south Wales, mainly in and around Cardiff (the capital), Swansea and Newport, and in the nearby valleys. Now that the country's traditional extractive and heavy industries have gone or are in decline, Wales' economy depends on the public sector, light and service industries and tourism. Wales' 2010 gross value added (GVA) was £45.5 billion (£15,145 per head, 74.0% of the average for the UK, and the lowest GVA per head in Britain).

Although Wales closely shares its political and social history with the rest of Great Britain, and the vast majority of the population speaks English, the country has retained a distinct cultural identity and is officially bilingual. Over 560,000 Welsh language speakers live in Wales, and the language is spoken by a majority of the population in parts of the north and west. From the late 19th century onwards, Wales acquired its popular image as the "land of song", in part due to the eisteddfod tradition. At many international sporting events, such as the FIFA World Cup, Rugby World Cup and the Commonwealth Games, Wales has its own national teams, though at the Olympic Games, Welsh athletes compete as part of a Great Britain team. Rugby Union is seen as a symbol of Welsh identity and an expression of national consciousness.

Wales sections
Intro  Etymology  History  Government and politics  Law and order  Economy  Transport  Education  Healthcare  Demography  Culture  See also  Footnotes  References  Bibliography  External links  

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