Great Britain, also known as Britain, is a large island in the north Atlantic Ocean off the northwest coast of continental Europe. With an area of 209,331 km2 , Great Britain is the largest of the British Isles, the largest European island, and the ninth-largest island in the world. In 2011 the island had a population of about 61 million people, making it the world's third-most populous island after Java in Indonesia and Honshu in Japan. The island of Ireland is situated to the west of it, and together these islands, along with over 1,000 smaller surrounding islands, comprise the British Isles archipelago.
The island is dominated by a maritime climate with quite narrow temperature differences between seasons. Politically, the island is part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and constitutes most of its territory. Most of England, Scotland, and Wales are on the island. The term "Great Britain" often extends to include surrounding islands that form part of England, Scotland, and Wales, and is also sometimes loosely applied to the UK as a whole.
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