The United Kingdom, officially the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, is a sovereign and insular country , member of the European Union , located northwest of Continental Europe . Its territory is geographically formed by the island of Great Britain , the northeast of the island of Ireland small adjacent islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the country with a land border, which separates it from the Republic of Ireland . Britain borders the Atlantic Ocean to the north and west , to the east with the North Sea , to the south with the English Channel and to the west with the Irish Sea. It’s also known as UK.
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- Britain has always been important in the art of modern times. Dramas, novels, stories and recent screenplays by British writers are widely recognized worldwide. Although far behind other European countries in the field of painting and music, the British have surpassed all others in literary creation. However, in the twentieth century Britain also saw important artists and composers, among them the painter David Hockney and composer Sir Edward Elgar .