England is a European country that is part of, but not synonymous with, both Great Britain and the United Kingdom. It home to major metropolitan centers such as London, Birmingham, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester and Sheffield. London is the capital city of England.
England has an area of 50,085 square miles, and its highest point is the 3,210 foot tall Scafell Pike. Its lowest point is the Fens, which is 15 feet below sea level. The Thames is England's longest river, although the Severn is Britain's longest river.
England's history goes back to ancient times, and the Romans built several cities in the country. The Middle Ages saw the construction of York, Windsor Castle and Winchester, the latter functioning as England's first capital.
England has long served as a center of culture, art and entertainment. Famous composers who have lived in the country include Thomas Tallis, Henry Purcell, Edward Elgar, Gustav Holst and Benjamin Britten. Composers from the European mainland, such as Franz Josef Haydn, made successful concert tours in England. Famous writers such as J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis lived much of their lives in England.
As of 2015, major religious traditions in England include Anglicanism, Catholicism, Judaism and Islam.