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Stereotypes of the British

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Stereotypes of British people are found in several cultures.[1] Some of these stereotypes are completely untrue,[2] while others have some truth to them.

Positive stereotypes


Many British people are seen as polite,[3] similar to Canadians.[4]

Gun policy

The United Kingdom is well-known for its lack of gun tolerance, and keeping a firm grip on gun control.[5] Gun policy is strict, with most licences held for sport.[6] British police officers only use guns as a last resort.[7]


Many British people are proud of their local community and the country they live in, [8] although some are afraid to show their pride in their cultures and politics publicly.[9]


British people are well known for their use of sarcasm and irony.[10] Some of the best comedy shows, such as Fawlty Towers and Mr Bean, are British.[11]


British music is often seen as being better than American music[12], including the best rock bands.[13]


Football is very popular in the United Kingdom, and has some of the best players in the world.[14][15]


Tea is seen as a key part of British culture.[16]

Negative stereotypes

Bigotry and racism

In the past, many British people were seen as bigoted.[17] Some modern British people in politics are often accused of being racist.[18] In addition, some British people have a negative view of Americans[19], though this is not universal.[20] British people overall are welcoming to people of different nationalities and sexualities.[21]


Weather in the United Kingdom is seen as poor,[1] mostly consisting of heavy rain.[22] However, the UK has seen some record-breaking sunny weather as well.[23]


Americans often joke about the British having bad teeth, however, this is mostly untrue.[2]


British food is often joked as being poor quality. In reality, this is false[2][24] and British people eat a huge variety of dishes from a great wealth of cultures.[25]


  1. ^ a b "12 Stereotypes of British People You Need to Know About". Gap Year. 3 March 2017. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  2. ^ a b c Finnis, Alex (24 April 2018). "The stereotypes Americans have about Britain which are actually completely wrong". Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  3. ^ Mills, Sara (19 October 2017). "English Politeness and Class". Cambridge University Press. Retrieved 20 May 2019 – via Google Books.
  4. ^ [1][dead link]
  5. ^ Hinton, Perry Roy (20 May 2019). "Stereotypes, Cognition and Culture". Psychology Press. Retrieved 20 May 2019 – via Google Books.
  6. ^ "There are more licensed gun owners in the UK than you might think". Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  7. ^ "Ukraine's police forces switch to MP5 submachine guns (PHOTOS) - KyivPost - Ukraine's Global Voice". 17 May 2019. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  8. ^ Paget, Antonia (10 May 2016). "What makes Brits proud? Biggest ever study of national pride reveals all". Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  9. ^ "Patriotic Britons are increasingly afraid of showing national pride in public, says study". The Independent. 19 April 2018.
  10. ^ "Most Common Cultural British Stereotypes". 15 July 2014. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  11. ^ [2][dead link]
  12. ^ Barrie, Joshua (24 October 2016). "American lists everything the British do better – it takes a while". Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  13. ^ Young, Rob (19 August 2010). "Electric Eden: Unearthing Britain's Visionary Music". Faber & Faber. Retrieved 20 May 2019 – via Google Books.
  14. ^ "Why is football so popular in England? - There are reasons". 16 May 2014. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  15. ^ Mitchell, Colin; Reeves, Jon; Tyler, Daniel (20 May 2019). "The History of English Football Clubs". New Holland Publishers. Retrieved 20 May 2019 – via Google Books.
  16. ^ "English Stereotypes: Fact or Fiction?". Tandem - Speak Any Language. 2017-08-30. Retrieved 2019-06-28.
  17. ^ "Not all British memsahibs were racist snobs". The Spectator. 4 May 2019. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  18. ^ Shabi, Rachel (7 May 2019). "Racism in political parties reflects pervasive prejudice in Brexit Britain - Rachel Shabi". Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  19. ^ "A bizarre view of Americans". 4 January 2013. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  20. ^ "British Views of American Society". 20 September 1864. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  21. ^
  22. ^ Murdoch, H. Adlai (20 May 2019). "Creolizing the Metropole: Migrant Caribbean Identities in Literature and Film". Indiana University Press. Retrieved 20 May 2019 – via Google Books.
  23. ^ Nobbs, Patrick (15 January 2015). "The Story of the British and Their Weather: From Frost Fairs to Indian Summers". Amberley Publishing Limited. Retrieved 20 May 2019 – via Google Books.
  24. ^ "They're short, drink too much & have terrible teeth: Why I'd never date a Brit". The Sun. 16 May 2019. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  25. ^ "Common Myths About British Food". The Spruce Eats. Retrieved 20 May 2019.