British People Prefer to Live in a Different Era, Survey Shows

November 20, 2014

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. expertise /ˌekspə(r)ˈtiːz/ (n.) – skill and knowledge in a particular field of study
Example: The professor was hired because of his expertise in the history subject.

2. hail /heɪl/ (v.) – to publicly give someone or something praise
Example: The computer is hailed as the best invention that benefits people.

3. prosperous /ˈprɒs pər əs/ (adj.) – characterized by wealth and success
Example: Some prosperous countries help developing countries.

4. execute /ˈɛk sɪˌkyut/ (v.) – to kill someone as a form of punishment for a crime committed
Example: Our national hero was unfairly executed without being brought to trial.

5. heresy /ˈhɛr ə si/ (n.) – a belief or an action that contradicts the teachings of a religion and is considered offensive
Example: She committed heresy when she threw the holy book.


Read the text below.
A survey revealed that British citizens would rather live in another era than the present one.

UK television channel Yesterday commissioned the Yesterday Historical Report to conduct a study to mark the launch of Inquisition [in-kwuh-ZISH-uh n], a four-part UK series exploring the shocking persecutions from history. The study involved more than 2,000 British adults and the expertise of historian Richard Felix.

According to the study, 57% of people in Britain wished they could live in another era and one in five said that they would like to live in the 1960s.

History shows that the 1960s is one of the greatest periods because of the widespread revolution and the change in politics, music, and societies around the world.

Despite the unique characteristics of the 1960s, the Roman period, which is between 27 BC to 476 AD, was hailed the most prosperous era. This was because small wars ended during this time, allowing the people to farm and trade peacefully. The Romans also introduced town planning, baths, toilets, and water supplies.     

On the other hand, the British voted the Black Death in the 14th Century as the darkest period of history, followed by the Inquisitions of the 12th Century to the 18th Century. The Black Death claimed the lives of about 75 to 200 million people with symptoms including blisters, fever, and vomiting of blood leading to death. And during the Inquisitions, people were arrested and executed for heresy by the Roman Catholic Church.

As for the top inventions of all time, electricity came on top with 60% of the votes, followed by penicillin with 44%, while the invention of the wheel came third.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         Would you want to live in the Roman period? Explain your answer.
·         Why do you think the British people are not satisfied with the current era they are in?

Discussion B

·         In your opinion, at what point of history was your country the most prosperous? Explain your answer.
·         How has the situation changed since then? Discuss with your tutor.

November 20, 2014