1 Television, films, books, etc. have probably given you ideas about what British people are like.
2Describe the British using 3 adjectives.
Serious, polite, clever, quiet, kind, serene, eccentrical, hard-headed, light-minded, conservative, reserved, polite, snobbish, friendly, unsociable, hypocritical, practical, realistic, have a good sense of humour, emotional, self-disciplined, courtesy, good-tempered, cheerful, boasting.
3Travellers to Britain from all over the world noticed different characteristics about the British character.
Find in 2 minutes the information that supports your prediction. (reading for specific information)
«For centuries the British have been known as snobbish (not very friendly), hypocritical and unsociable».
«The British are said to be a polite and well-mannered people. Englishmen tend to be rather conservative, they love familiar things».
«The English are practical and realistic, prudent and careful about almost everything. Everything is orderly: the lawns and the trees are neatly trimmed».
«The British people are considered to be the world’s greatest tea drinkers. They drink it all meals and between meals».
«Every Englishman is said to be a countryman at heart. The English countryside is many things to many people. It stands for freshness, for leisure, fun and games».
«The English are reputed to have a good sense of humour».
«The Scots are said to be a serious people, rather inventive and somewhat mystical».
«The Irish are known for their charm as well as for the beauty of the Irish girls».
«The Welsh are an emotional people but sometimes reticent».
4What words in the sentences above are used to describe the British? Write them down in 3 columns: positive, negative and other. Consult a dictionary.
5What new facts about the British have you learned?
6Which characteristics of the British have been noticed by different people?
The English thought conservative.
The Scots said well-mannered.
The Welsh are known to be great tea drinkers.
The Irish believed practical and careful.
The British considered country people supposed emotional
7Right or wrong?
1) It is said that the British are great coffee drinkers.
2) Many travellers consider the British to be impolite.
3) They say that every Englishman is a countryman at heart.
4) Some people say that the Scots are serious people.
5) We know that the Irish girls are beautiful.
6) They say the English have no sense of humour.
8Read the text and be ready to speak about English character.
One of the most striking features of English life is the self-discipline and courtesy of people of all classes. There is little noisy behaviour, and practically no loud disputing in the street. People do not rush excitedly for seats in buses or trains, but take their seats in quietly at bus stops in a quiet and orderly manner.
Englishman are naturally polite and are never tired in saying «Thank you», «I’m sorry», «Beg your pardon». If you follow anyone who is entering a building or are room, he will hold a door open for you. Many foreigners have commented on a remarkable politeness of the English people. English people don’t like displaying their emotions even in dangerous and tragic situations, and ordinary people seem to remain good-tempered and cheerful under difficulties. The Englishman does not like any boasting or showing off ill manners, dress or speech. Sometimes he conceals his knowledge. The Englishman prefers his own house to an apartment in a block of flats, because he doesn’t wish his doing to be overlooked by his neighbours. «An Englishman’s house is his castle» Sunday is a very quiet day in London. Londoners like to get out of town on Sundays. The sea is not far – only fifty or sixty miles away and people like to go down to the sea in summer or somewhere to the country for skiing in winter.