The analysis of the histories of the almost 200 countries in the world found only 22 which have never experienced an invasion by the British. A new study has found that at various times the British have invaded almost 90 per cent of the countries around the globe. View more at #FactsPediaIn.
Among this select group of nations are far-off destinations such as Guatemala, Tajikistan and the Marshall Islands, as well some slightly closer to home, such as Luxembourg.
Stuart Laycock, the author, has worked his way around the globe, through each country alphabetically, researching its history to establish whether, at any point, they have experienced an incursion by Britain. Only a comparatively small proportion of the total in Mr Laycock’s list of invaded states actually formed an official part of the empire.
The remainder have been included because the British were found to have achieved some sort of military presence in the territory – however transitory – either through force, the threat of force, negotiation or payment. Incursions by British pirates, privateers or armed explorers have also been included, provided they were operating with the approval of their government.
So, many countries which once formed part of the Spanish empire and seem to have little historical connection with the UK, such as Costa Rica, Ecuador and El Salvador, make the list because of the repeated raids they suffered from state-sanctioned British sailors.
The earliest invasion launched from these islands was an incursion into Gaul – now France – at the end of the second century. Clodius Albinus led an army, thought to include many Britons, across the Channel in an attempt to seize the imperial throne. The force was defeated in 197 at Lyon.
The countries never invaded by the British:
The research lists countries based on their current national boundaries and names. Many of the invasions took place when these did not apply. The research covered the 192 other UN member states as well as the Vatican City and Kosovo, which are not member states, but are recognised by the UK government as independent states.
- Central African Republic
- Republic of Congo
- Ivory Coast
- Marshall Islands
- Sao Tome and Principe
- Vatican City
Mr Laycock added: “On one level, for the British, it is quite amazing and quite humbling, that this is all part of our history, but clearly there are parts of our history that we are less proud of. The book is not intended as any kind of moral judgement on our history or our empire. It is meant as a light-hearted bit of fun.”
View more at #FactsPediaIn.