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An Anglophile is a person who is fond of English culture.[1] Its antonym is Anglophobe.[2]


Plaque to Paul Mellon, an anglophile, within St George's, Bloomsbury

The word comes from Latin Anglus "English" via French, and is ultimately derived from Old English Englisc "English" + Ancient Greek φίλος - philos, "friend". It gives the first use as occurring in 1867, where the journal Revue des deux mondes is described as a "thoroughly Anglophile journal".[3]

In some cases, Anglophilia represents an individual's appreciation of English history. Alongside Anglophiles who are attracted to 'traditional' English culture (e.g. Shakespeare, Jane Austen, Dr. Johnson, Gilbert and Sullivan), there are also anglophiles whose affection is based on popular music. The reach also extends to news and entertainment (such as the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC World Service) news programme), Doctor Who, Sherlock, Downton Abbey, Absolutely Fabulous, Call the Midwife, Merlin, Footballer's Wives, Top Gear, and English cars (Jaguar, Rolls-Royce, Land Rover, MG or Aston Martin) and English contemporary culture in general. Fondness of the British monarchy, English bureaucracy (such as the Westminster system of parliament and the Royal Mail) as well as British Empire nostalgia and the English class system, may also be considered Anglophilia. In film and television, adoration of current actors such as Helena Bonham Carter, Russell Brand, Carey Mulligan, David Tennant, Idris Elba, Clive Owen, Hugh Grant, Jude Law, Kate Winslet, Keira Knightley, Benedict Cumberbatch. Tom Hiddleston, and Sacha Baron Cohen may be considered Anglophilia due to the steady presence of British films that infiltrate Hollywood. In fashion, designers' brands that include Alexander McQueen, Burberry, Mary Katrantzou, Stella McCartney and Vivienne Westwood have maintained a global appeal. This goes back to the Swinging London look from the 1960s Mod subculture, which included designers like Mary Quant and the iconic models Twiggy and Jean Shrimpton. Other British subcultures of interest include the Punks, Rockers, Skinheads and Teddy Boys.

American Anglophiles may use English spellings instead of American spellings, such as 'colour' instead of 'color', 'grey' rather than 'gray', 'centre' rather than 'center', 'traveller' rather than 'traveler', 'theatre' rather than 'theater', and 'tyre' rather than 'tire'. Noted American Anglophiles include Madonna, Jean Paul Getty, Gerard Way, George Takei, Brandon Flowers, Jack White, Courtney Love, and Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. The use of British-English expressions in casual conversation and news reportage has recently increased in the United States. The trend and misunderstanding and misuse of these expressions by Americans has become a topic of media interest on both sides of the Atlantic. University of Delaware English professor Ben Yagoda claims that the use of British English has "established itself as this linguistic phenomenon that shows no sign of abating". Lynne Murphy, a linguist at the University of Sussex, notes the trend is more pronounced in the Northeastern United States. The internet, interest in the Royal family, prominent British journalists working for the American media, a generation that grew up on Harry Potter, and British accents sounding "posh" to Americans have been cited as reasons for this trend.[4][5][6]

The term is not usually associated with citizens of Commonwealth nations (the former British Empire), although these countries share many aspects of culture and history with the UK. Occasionally, it is used to describe the adherence to the culture of the wider Anglosphere such as the South Africa, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

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