Isle of Man

Isle of Man

Mannin, Ellan Vannin (Manx)
Motto: "Quocunque Jeceris Stabit" (Latin)
"Whithersoever you throw it, it will stand"[1]
Location of Isle of Man
StatusCrown dependency
and largest settlement
54°09′N 4°29′W / 54°09′N 4°29′W / 54.150; -4.483
Official languagesEnglish (de facto)
Manx (Traditional)
Christianity (Church of England)
GovernmentParliamentary democratic constitutional monarchy with a de facto non-partisan democracy
Elizabeth II
Sir Richard Gozney
Howard Quayle
Legislative Council
House of Keys
• Total
572 km2 (221 sq mi) (unranked)
• Water (%)
• 2016 census
• Density
148/km2 (383.3/sq mi) (78th)
GDP (PPP)2014 estimate
• Total
US$7.43 billion (161st)
• Per capita
US$84,600 (9th)
HDI (2010)0.849[4]
very high · 14th
CurrencyPound sterling (GBP);
Manx pound (IMP)[a]
Time zoneUTC (Greenwich Mean Time)
• Summer (DST)
UTC+1 (British Summer Time)
Date formatdd/mm/yyyy (AD)
Driving sideleft
Calling code
ISO 3166 codeIM
  1. ^ The Manx pound is in parity with the pound sterling, and is only legal tender in the Isle of Man.

The Isle of Man (Manx: Ellan Vannin [ˈɛlʲən ˈvanɪn]), often referred to simply as Mann (n/; Manx: Mannin [ˈmanɪn]), is a self-governing British Crown dependency in the Irish Sea between Great Britain and Ireland. The head of state is Queen Elizabeth II, who holds the title of Lord of Mann and is represented by a lieutenant governor. Defence is the responsibility of the United Kingdom.

The island has been inhabited since before 6500 BC. Gaelic cultural influence began in the 5th century AD, and the Manx language, a branch of the Gaelic languages, emerged. In 627, Edwin of Northumbria conquered the Isle of Man along with most of Mercia. In the 9th century, Norsemen established the Kingdom of the Isles, which included the Isle of Man. Magnus III, King of Norway, was King of Mann and the Isles between 1099 and 1103.[5]

In 1266, the island became part of Scotland under the Treaty of Perth, after being ruled by Norway. After a period of alternating rule by the kings of Scotland and England, the island came under the feudal lordship of the English Crown in 1399. The lordship revested into the British Crown in 1765, but the island never became part of the 18th-century kingdom of Great Britain or its successors the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and the present-day United Kingdom. It retained its internal self-government.

In 1881, the Isle of Man parliament, Tynwald, became the first national legislative body in the world to give women the right to vote in a general election, although this excluded married women.[6][7] In 2016, the Isle of Man was awarded biosphere reserve status by UNESCO.[8]

Insurance and online gambling generate 17% of GNP each, followed by information and communications technology and banking with 9% each.[9] Internationally, the Isle of Man is known for the Isle of Man TT motorcycle races.[10]


The Manx name of the Isle of Man is Ellan Vannin: ellan (Manx pronunciation: [ɛlʲən]) is a Manx word meaning "island"; Mannin (IPA: [manɪn]) appears in the genitive case as Vannin (IPA: [vanɪn]), with initial consonant mutation, hence Ellan Vannin, "Island of Mann". The short form used in English, Mann, is derived from the Manx Mannin,[11] though sometimes the name is written as Man. The earliest recorded Manx form of the name is Manu or Mana.[12]

The Old Irish form of the name is Manau or Mano. Old Welsh records named it as Manaw, also reflected in Manaw Gododdin, the name for an ancient district in north Britain along the lower Firth of Forth.[13] The oldest known reference to the island calls it Mona, in Latin (Julius Caesar, 54 BC); in the 1st century AD, Pliny the Elder records it as Monapia or Monabia, and Ptolemy (2nd century) as Monœda (Mοναοιδα, Monaoida) or Mοναρινα (Monarina), in Koine Greek. Later Latin references have Mevania or Mænavia (Orosius, 416),[14] and Eubonia or Eumonia by Irish writers. It is found in the Sagas of Icelanders as Mön.[15]

The name is probably cognate with the Welsh name of the island of Anglesey, Ynys Môn,[13] usually derived from a Celtic word for 'mountain' (reflected in Welsh mynydd, Breton menez, and Scottish Gaelic monadh),[16][17] from a Proto-Celtic *moniyos.

The name was at least secondarily associated with that of Manannán mac Lir in Irish mythology (corresponding to Welsh Manawydan fab Llŷr).[18] In the earliest Irish mythological texts, Manannán is a king of the otherworld, but the 9th-century Sanas Cormaic identifies a euhemerised Manannán as "a famous merchant who resided in, and gave name to, the Isle of Man".[19] Later, a Manannán is recorded as the first king of Mann in a Manx poem (dated 1504).[20]