Four nations. Introduction.
Every country has a national anthem [гимн], a song which expresses national identity [самобытность], recalls history and praises [прославляет] the people. A great form of patriotism, indeed. For example, the British national anthem is «God Save the Queen», sung whenever Queen Elizabeth II makes a public appearance. But in recent times, Scotland has adopted «Flower of Scotland» as its unofficial anthem. Regularly played at national rugby and football matches, «Flower of Scotland» evokes [напоминает о] the country’s very significant victory against England at the Battle of Bannockburn in 1314, led by Robert the Bruce [Роберт I Брюс, король Шотландии] .
The song itself is named after Scotland’s national emblem. Not surprisingly, each country in the UK is represented by various symbols. But did you know that England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland all have its own floral emblem? Well, England’s emblem is the rose, while Wales has the daffodil [жёлтый нарцисс] and Ireland has the shamrock [трилистник] . But Scotland’s national emblem is called the thistle [чертополох].
Originally seen as a symbol of defence in the 15th century, the thistle, this prickly-leaved [колючий] purple flower, is and will always be known as the symbol of Scotland. The flower of Scotland, my country.
After John Moran
Some more facts about Scotland: http://learnenglishteens.britishcouncil.org/2012/05/01/scotland-not-just-tartan-and-bagpipes
Fun: online jigsaw puzzle — 42 pieces.