The Glimpse of Great Britain and Its Parliament Life

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The Glimpse of Great Britain and Its Parliament Life

1. Great Britain or the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland as the country is officially called ranks among the oldest constitutional monarchies in Europe. The country's first con­stitution, the Magna Charta, was signed under the pressure of her Parliament by the despotic King John Lackland, son of King Richard the Lion Hearted, as far back as June 10,1215. The Magna Charta had a great influence on the country's parliamentary life and traditions which have remained unchanged for centuries. Thus, the Palace of Westminster where Parliament is held and which was built anew and rebuilt for several times is in the same place for more than 1,000 years. Besides the Parliament consists of two Chambers or Houses - the Upper Chamber or the House of Lords and the lower Chamber or the House of Commons.

2. The Upper House consists of over 1,100 Members belonging to one of the three unequally represented groups of peers: 1. Heredi­tary Peers, Marquises, Earls, Viscounts, Barons (almost half of all peers), and Peeresses in their own right (ab 20); 2. Life Peers and Life Peeresses; 3. Archbishops (2) and Senior Bishops (20).

The House of Lords is headed by the Lord Chancellor who is also the minister of Justice and Head of the High Court.

3. The House of Commons consists of 659 elected MPs (1997 elections). The House is headed by the Speaker. The number of seats in the House, however, covers the need of only two-thirds of the elected MPs, the rest using the «front benches», the «cross benches» and the «back benches».

4. There are nine Royal British orders of Knighthood. The high­est of them is the order of the Garter, which was founded by King Edward III in 1348. It consists of two parts - a collar gold chain worn around the neck with St. George killing the Dragon, and an eight-pointed star with the words Honi soit qui таї у pense (in French) meaning: Shame on them who think badly. The order is conferred to the members of the Royal family and 25 knights. The only commoner to have received the order was Sir Winston Churchill in 1957. This


order gives the bearer the right to be buried in Westminster Abbey.

The next important order is that of the Bath established during the reign of Henry IV (1399-1413). The name of the order comes from the ceremony of bathing (the symbol of purity) before being given it. There are three different degrees of the order, the highest being the first: 1) G.C.B. (Grand Cross of the Bath); 2) K.C.B. (Knight Com­mander of the Bath), 3) C.B. (Commander of the Bath). The highest military award in Great Britain is the Victoria Cross instituted by Queen Victoria in 1856 to mark the victory in the Crimean War. It is a bronze Maltese Cross with a Lion in its centre and the inscription «For Val­our» under it. The cross is made from the metal of the Russian guns captured in Sevastopol during the Crimean War in 1855.

5. Several traditional ceremonies are held in the capital of Great Britain attracting the attention of many Londoners and their numerous domestic and foreign quests. One of them observed every day is the changing of the Household Guards quartered in the Chelsea and Wellington Barracks near the Buckingham Palace. The Brigade of Guards of the Queen (and the Royal family body-guards) consists of two regiments representing the nationalities of the United Kingdom. The English Grenadiers wear the bear skin caps twenty inches high. The Scots Guards wear a wide black ribbon on the back of their uniform colour 15 cm wide and 25 cm long.

All the Guards wear scarlet or red tunics and black trousers except the Scots Guards wearing their traditional regimental cloth. The Irish Guards wear a triple row of brass buttons and distinctive plumes. The second ceremonial event which can be seen at 11 a.m. every weekday and at 10 a.m. on Sundays is Mounting the Guard. In this ceremony the Household Cavalry (the Royal and Life Guards) take part. They wear breast and back shiny plates made of steel armour. The third ceremony is observed only once a year on the second Saturday in June at ab. 11.15 a.m. and is called Trooping the Colour. The ceremony marks the «official» birthday of the Queen and presents an inspection parade of the Queen's own troops. This spectacular ceremony with the Queen riding side-saddle on a highly trained horse ahead of the Guards is watched by many hundreds of people.

Among other old traditions the most prominent are the cer­emony of the Keys which is over 700 years old (since 1215 when King John was forced to sign the Magna Charta) and Lord Mayor's Show. The latter goes back to the mayoralty of Richard (Dick) Whittington, who was mayor four times (1396, 1397, 1406 and 1419). The Lord

Mayor rides from the City in a splendid six horses-spanned coach through the streets of London and stops at Law Courts where he is presented to the Lord Chief of Justice, who hands him his sword of office after receiving a solemn promise to carry out his duties faith­fully. The procession then continues to Westminster, and then returns to the Mansion House, the official residence of the Lord Mayor.


Exercise VIII. Read the stories A, B, C, D, E below, pick out the units of the English culturally biased lexicon and trans­late the stories into Ukrainian.


An Englishman's day - and who better to describe it than an Englishman's wife? It begins when, ignoring me, he sits down to break­fast with his morning paper. As he scans the headlines (or the racing results) there is nothing he likes better than his favourite breakfast of cornflakes with milk and sugar (porridge if he lives in the North) followed by fried bacon and eggs, marmalade and toast, the whole accompanied by tea or coffee. But whether he in fact gets such a meal depends on the state of my housekeeping budget! After breakfast, except on Sundays and (in many cases) Saturdays which are holidays, he sets off to work by train, tube, car, motor scooter, motor bike or even on his own two feet. The time he sets out depends in large degree upon whether he is what might colloquially be termed a «striver» (one who works himself), a «driver» (one who sees that others works) or a «thriver» (one who profits from others work). If he is a «striver», he will jostle along with thousands like him on the 7.20, probably still reading his paper (or somebody else's) and studying the successes (or otherwise) of his favourite team.

The «drivers» customarily depart about an hour later while the «thrivers» travel up to the City in great style about an hour later. But be he «striver», «driver» or «thriver», he will enjoy his tea or coffee break around about 11. The tea or coffee is usually brought to the factory bench or office desk.

Then, at mid-day, everything stops for lunch. Most offices and small shops close for an hour, say from 1 to 2, and the city pavements are thronged with people on their way to cafes. Factory workers usually eat in their canteens.


The usual mid-day meal usually consists of two courses - a meat course accompanied by plenty of vegetables, followed by a sweet dish, perhaps fruit pudding and custard with tea or coffee to finish. Most Englishmen like what they call «good plain food, not messed about with». They must be able to recognize what they are eating. Otherwise they are likely to refuse it. Usually they like beef steaks, chops, roast beef and Yorkshire pudding and fried fish and chipped potatoes.

They are in the main not overfond of soup, remarking that it fills them without leaving sufficient room for the more important meat course. Then back to work again, with another break in the middle of the afternoon, once again for tea or coffee, sometimes with a cake or biscuit.

The working day finishes at time between 4 and 6, with the «thrivers» usually first home and the «strivers» last. On arrival home, many Englishmen seem to like to inspect their gardens before their evening meal.

This goes under various names - tea, high tea, dinner or sup­per depending upon its size and also the social standing of those eating it. Usually a savoury meat course is followed by stewed fruit or cake and tea. His evening meal over, the Englishman might do a bit of gardening and then have a walk to the «local» for a «quick one». The «local» means the nearest beer house while a «quick one» means a drink (alcoholic, of course!) taking anything from half-an-hour to three hours to imbibe! There is plenty of lively, congenial company at the «local» and he can play darts, dominoes, billiards or discuss the weather or the current situation.

But if the Englishman stays at home, he might listen to the radio, watch television, talk, read or pursue his favourite hobby. Then at any time between 10 and 12 he will have his «nightcap» - a drink accompanied by a snack - and then off to bed ready for tomorrow. (S. Andrews)

B. You Say Pasta, We Say NoodleIt's too soon to declare peace in the world's pasta wars. But the combatants finally sat down together at the table. U.S. pasta-makers have been angered over European Union subsidies, which sometimes made Italian pasta cheaper than American brands on U.S. grocery shelves. A few months ago, the U.S. International Trade Commission decided there was merit to American pastamakers' com-

plaints about being hurt by Italian add Turkish imports. No settlement has been reached yet. Italy's Menconi was quick to recall how na­tional pride was pricked earlier this year by a claim from some U.S. experts that pasta could be bad for some people, especially the over­weight. Focusing on the common goal of increasing pasta consump­tion, savvy spaghetti sellers aren't overlooking any market. C. Fast Food Burgers

Two quick service restaurants specializing in burgers are at­tracting locals and foreigners alike. If you're looking for a tasty, cheap meal in a convenient location, Kentucky Beirut Chicken and Boston Burger, both located in the center of Kyiv, measure up Kentucky Bei­rut Chicken wins on the burger front. Their Lebanese-seasoned burg­ers - it's a secret recipe, - are crave-indicing. They come on crisp buns with a variety of fixings that are in the plate option. A plate is like getting a full meal deal at McDonald's, only in Kyiv it includes a hamburger or cheesburger, French fries, pickles and coleslaw. KBC's drawback is Boston Burger's saving - French fries. While KBC's tend to be soggy and too cool, Boston Burger's are perfect, string-like morsels. Boston Burger's hamburgers are fine, but they're missing a special touch. They're simply a bland hunk of meat, with wilted let­tuce and ketchup. KBC has an advantage in that it cooks as food is ordered, whereas Boston Burger premakes a bunch of sandwiches, which means they sometimes are served lukewarm and not-so-fresh. Until the Big Mac makes its way to Kyiv, Boston Burger and Kentucky Beirut Chicken will fill that fast-food burger whole in your stomach. 0. The Candymaker's Witness

A candymaker in Indiana wanted to make a candy that would be a witness, so he made the famous throughout America Christmas Candy Cane on which he incorporated several symbols for the birth, ministry and death of Jesus Christ.

He began with a hard candy stick of pure white, which symbol­izes the Virgin Birth and the sinless nature of Jesus; and hard to symbolize the Solid Rock, the foundation of the Church, and the firm­ness of the promises of God. This candy cane was made in the form of the letter «J» to represent the name of Jesus, who came to earth as our Savior. It could also represent the staff of the «Good Shepherd» with which he reaches down into the ditches of the world to lift out the fallen lambs who, like all sheep, have gone astray.

Thinking that the only white candy was somewhat plain, the


candymaker stained it with red stripes. He used three small stripes to show the stripes of the scourging Jesus and the large red stripe was for the blood that was shed by Christ on the cross so that we could have the promise of eternal life.

Unfortunately, in America the candy became known only as a sweet Candy Cane - a meaningless decoration seen at Christmas time. But the meaning is still there for those who «have eyes to see and ears to hear».

E. Scotland

It is one of those places where civilization has not tramped all before it. Scotland has uniqely combined the untouched beauty of nature with the kind of facilities that guarantee comfort.

Your impressions from Scotland very much depend on you, on how open you are to new cultures and traditions of this country. Start your trip with the cities and then go deep to the Highlands. Step by step you will be unweiling the quiet magic of this miraculous place and falling in love with its unforgettable authenticity, which gets smoothly with modernity. Tartan is no longer just an echo from the past. Any bank or football team has its own tartan. Any local family can have a tartan by just registering it at the Scottish tartan Society.

And it is not only fashion that reflects a changing conscious­ness. Over the last 10-15 years Scots seem to have become more conscious of their national identity, just as we Ukrainians have. They do not only debate their more independent status, but wear kilts more often - for weddings and for parties, even for work. They feel proud and comfortable on these double-pleated skirts, even when they have to pay something in the region on of 600 USD for a full outfit.

Exercise IX. Translate the passage below into English. Explain the ways you employed to convey faithfully the notions of the specifically Ukrainian national lexicon.

Кобзар О.М. Вересай

Старий уже був Грицько Вересай. Він брав кобзу і простував на церковний майдан Калюжинців. Поводирем сліпого ставав малий онук Остапко, що мусив жебрати, бо кріпацького хліба вистачало сім'ї лише до Різдва. У М'ясниці гуляли весілля, на які запрошували Остапкового батька Микиту Вересая, котрий гарно грав на скрипці. Після тяжкої хвороби 4-річний хлопчик осліп. Дід переконував онука, що для закріпаченої людини - то захист, хоч не бачитиме, що діється на нашій зболеній землі. А через десятиліття саме пісня «Про правду і неправду» понесла славу

Кобзаря Остапа Вересая по України за її межі. Коли влітку 1874 року в Києві відбувався визначний в історії кобзарства III Археологічний з'їзд, на який з'їхалися учені з усієї Европи, французький професор Н. Рамбо назвав знаменитого виконавця народних дум і пісень «Гомером в українській свиті». Завдяки своєму мистецтву Остап Микитович побував у царському палаці в Петербурзі - прийшов зі скаргою на тяжку долю селянина, наївно думаючи, що цар допоможе.

Спливли роки. У Сокиринці на Чернігівщині, як до Канева на могилу великого Шевченка, приходять люди вклонитися співцеві.


Це печиво пекли у Петрівський піст або на Петра. На це свято годилося шанувати пастухів і підпасків. їх частували і дарували мандрики («мандриги»)-сирні пампушки. Вірили: хто з'їсть їх у Петрівку, того весь рік минатиме лихоманка. Після Петра вже переставала кувати зозуля, що й породило приказку: «Зозуля мандрикою вдавилась». Особливо смачними були мандрики із сиру, відтопленого із сколотини (маслянки), тобто сироватки, яка залишилася після збитого із сметани масла.

3. Обряд з кашею

Щоб відзначити таку важливу для сім'ї подію, як хрещення дитини, у хаті влаштовували святковий обід, відомий у народі під назвою «христини». За північноукраїнською традицією баба-повитуха приносила круто зварену кашу, накривала їїхлібом-сіллю або млинцем і пропонувала розбити горщик тому, хто покладе більше грошей. Гості скидали їх новородженому - «на мило», «на воза», «на коня», «на люльку», «на віночок». Дарували й полотно на пелюшки, хустинки.

Хрещений батько клав більші гроші і розбивав горщик качалкою або тричі підіймав його і за останнім разом ударяв об кут стола. Якщо каша ціла, не розвалилася, - це на достаток і щастя. її годилося скоро схопити і з'їсти, «щоб дитина говорила скоріше», «щоб дитя на ноги хваталося швидко». Частування кашею було насичене й іншими діями, супроводжувалося примовками, наприклад: «Роди, Боже, жито й пшеницю, а куму й кумі дітей копицю». Хлопчику бажали, «щоб орач був, щоб не злодій був». Дівчинці - «щоб хлопці поважали й любили» і т.ін. Обряд з кашею - багатозначний ритуал. У ньому реалізувалася ідея входження дитини в сім'ю.


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