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Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland is one of the four countries in the United Kingdom, with England, Scotland and Wales. The number of people who live there is about 1.8 million, which is about 3% of the UK population. The capital city is Belfast. Another name for Northern Ireland is ‘Ulster’ or ‘The Six Counties’. The country was created in 1921 when Ireland was divided into Southern Ireland (later — the Republic of Ireland) and Northern Ireland.

In Northern Ireland you can find beautiful beaches, forests and mountains. You can visit the Giant’s Causeway, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. About ten thousand columns were formed after a volcanic eruption. Different popular films and TV series are filmed in Northern Ireland. The most famous TV series shot here is ‘A Game of Thrones’. Hundreds of tourists come to Northern Ireland just to see the places where some scenes took place.

Nearly everyone in Northern Ireland speaks English. A small number of people speak Irish Gaelic, an old Celtic language. The Irish language is the national and first official language in the Republic of Ireland. In some of the regions it is spoken by more than 70% of the population. Speaking about Northern Ireland this language is officially recognized as a minority language. The other regional language is Ulster Scots, a variation of English which is similar to Scots spoken in Scotland.

All types of music can be heard in Northern Ireland. These are traditional Irish music, jazz, rock or pop. In summer Belfast has music festivals like ‘Belsonic’ and ‘Tennents Vital’. Many musicians from Northern Ireland as well as international ones play at these festivals. There are some very popular singers and bands that come from Ireland. The most famous are U2 who have sold more than 170 million copies, Enya with her 80 million and the Cranberries with more than 50 thousand copies.

Northern Ireland is a popular place to go walking or do outdoor activities such as mountain biking, coasteering or zorbing. Such kinds of sport as football, rugby, cricket, Gaelic football and hurlingare are popular in Northern Ireland. Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland join together in the same team for many international competitions. However, football is different and Northern Ireland has its own football league. Still, almost all the players from the Northern Ireland national football team play in the English Premier League.

The best known dish from Northern Ireland is the ‘Ulster Fry’, which is bacon, eggs, sausages and soda bread. Sometimes you can also find tomatoes, mushrooms or baked beans in this dish. It is also eaten with Irish potato bread. Irish stew is also a very popular dish among tourists. It is made with mutton with some vegetables such as potatoes, carrots and onions. Herbs play a very important role. The most frequent ones are thyme and parsley.

As for symbols, St. Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland and Northern Ireland. On March 17th St. Patrick’s Day is a very important celebration in both countries with parades, concerts, music and dancing. Nowadays this holiday is observed in many other countries, not necessarily English-speaking: in Europe and even Russia. The main symbol of these countries is the shamrock (a green plant with three leaves). There are many other symbols such as the harp, Celtic cross, the Claddagh ring etc.

ВОПРОС 1: According to the author Northern Ireland used to be …
1) part of the UK.
2) part of Ireland.
3) part of the Republic of Ireland.
4) part of Southern Ireland.

ВОПРОС 2: Which of the following statements is TRUE, according to the author?
1) The Giant’s Causeway is the only UNESCO World Heritage Site in Northern Ireland.
2) ‘A Game of Thrones’ was shot in The Giant’s Causeway.
3) The Giant’s Causeway is surrounded by beautiful beaches.
4) A volcano eruption created The Giant’s Causeway.

ВОПРОС 3: The author says that the Irish language …
1) is spoken by 70% of the population of Northern Ireland.
2) is the national language of Northern Ireland.
3) is a minority language in Northern Ireland.
4) is a variation of English.

ВОПРОС 4: According to the author at music festivals you can hear …
1) only traditional music.
2) many international singers.
3) only musicians from Northern Ireland.
4) many famous bands.

ВОПРОС 5: Which of the following statements is WRONG, according to the author?
1) Many players of the national football team of Northern Ireland play in England.
2) Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland join for some international competitions.
3) Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland joined football team.
4) Gaelic football is more popular than football and rugby.

ВОПРОС 6: The author says that the ‘Ulster Fry’ …
1) is made with mutton.
2) is cooked with many herbs.
3) is made with sausage.
4) is the most famous dish in Northern Ireland.

ВОПРОС 7: According to the author St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated
1) all the countries in the world.
2) all Europe.
3) all the English-speaking countries.
4) all Ireland.

ВОПРОС 1: – 2
ВОПРОС 2: – 4
ВОПРОС 3: – 3
ВОПРОС 4: – 2
ВОПРОС 5: – 3
ВОПРОС 6: – 4
ВОПРОС 7: – 4