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10 best gifts given by Brits to the world

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Recently, we were asked to make a list of the 10 best gifts that Brits had given to the world. Brits were not alone in their efforts, as you know, but Brits made sterling contributions. Here is our list -

1) The English language – a global language which welcomes foreign words.

2) Property rights – without them people are desperately poor and oppressed.

3) One Common Law for all based on principles of fairness and Judeo-Christian ethics, with no person above the law. This subordinated government and the powerful to the rule of law. Trial by a jury of one’s peers who are entitled to determine the law as well as the facts and can refuse to convict if they believe the law is unjust is a great shield against government tyranny.

4) The free economy, created by free people and first described by Adam Smith, which has lifted more than a billion people out of abject poverty.

5) Outlawing slavery – made possible by the outstanding efforts of the Royal Navy.

6) Representative, constitutional government under just law.

7) Freedom of speech, freedom of association, freedom of religion and equal rights for all – a few of the values defended by Brits in World War II.

8) The development of a scientific method that includes experimentation, verification, peer review and team work, which has given the world affordable food and clothing, warm homes, clean water and paved roads, most breeds of dogs and farm animals, television, phones, jet planes, trains, worldwide exploration, medical advances (antibiotics, anaesthesia, artificial hips, ECGs, defibrillators, MRIs, CT scans) and the worldwide web.

9) The concept of fair play and the rules for 8 global sports - football (soccer), rugby, golf, cricket, tennis, boxing, badminton and table tennis.

10) Shakespeare, Robert Burns, Jane Austen, Oscar Wilde, JRR Tolkien, JK Rowling, English cathedrals, English gardens, Christopher Wren, John Constable, William Blake, Turner, AWN Pugin, William Byrd, the hymn writers, The Beatles. . .


Comments (2)

Katie:

This is a great list...just love all the items that are part of the sharing of the British Heritage! I wonder what we in America would have on our list. I guess any nation could ask this of themselves, and probably should ask this of themselves.

Death Bredon:

The industrial revolution that originated in the English Midlands, though it had rough edges at first, was exceedingly preferable to the serf-like drudgery of a purely agricultural economy and, along with the general concepts of free enterprise, was (and still is) part and parcel to the creation of at least some leisure time for those of low birth through out the globe.

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