The history of the United Kingdom dates back to the prehistoric period, with the arrival of human beings on the British Isles. The Roman Empire invaded Britain in 43 AD and ruled the country until the 5th century AD. After the Romans left, various Germanic tribes invaded the country, including the Angles, Saxons, and Jutes. These tribes eventually became the Anglo-Saxons, who established several kingdoms throughout the country.
In the 9th and 10th centuries, the Vikings also invaded Britain, establishing their own kingdoms in the north and east. However, the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms eventually united under the rule of King Alfred the Great, who established the first English kingdom and fought off the Viking forces.
By the 12th century, England had become a dominant power in Europe, with a strong monarchy and a powerful aristocracy. In 1066, William the Conqueror invaded England and established the Norman dynasty, which ruled the country for several hundred years. The medieval period also saw the development of the English language and the establishment of the Church of England.
In the 16th century, the Tudor dynasty came to power, with rulers such as Henry VIII and Elizabeth I. This period saw the establishment of the Church of England as the official church of the country, as well as the beginning of English colonialism.
During the 17th century, the English Civil War broke out, pitting the monarchy against the parliament. The parliamentarians won, and the monarchy was abolished for a period of time. In 1688, however, a bloodless revolution restored the monarchy under the rule of William and Mary.
The 18th and 19th centuries saw the rise of the British Empire, with England becoming a major world power and colonizing much of the world. The Victorian era, named after Queen Victoria, saw enormous social and cultural changes, including the growth of industry, improvements in healthcare and education, and the expansion of the British Empire.
In the 20th century, the United Kingdom played a major role in both World War I and World War II, and was a founding member of the United Nations. In the latter half of the century, the country experienced significant social and cultural changes, including the advent of the welfare state, the rise of popular culture, and the growth of multiculturalism.
Today, the United Kingdom is a constitutional monarchy with a parliament and a prime minister. It includes four constituent countries: England, Scotland,