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Pocketmags Digital Magazines
Pocketmags Digital Magazines


A look at Britain’s nomadic people.

What do you think Charlie Chaplin, Michael Caine and Bob Hoskins have in common? Well, they’re all film stars. That’s one thing. And they’re all British. That’s another thing. But did you know that they’re also all of Romani origin?

The Romani (otherwise known as “gypsies”) were originally from India. In the 9th century, they set off on a journey that took them through Afghanistan, Persia and Greece before arriving in Europe. Gypsies are thought to have come to England in about the 15th century. People originally thought they came from Egypt – hence the name, gypsies.

The Romani found work where they could. Many became seasonal workers. During the summer, they often worked on farms. And during the winter, they did casual work in towns, or sold goods or services door to door. Traditional Romani occupations included basket making, dealing in scrap metal, chimney sweeping and horse trading. Most of the Romani were travellers. They would move around the country on foot or in light, horse-drawn carts. Around the mid-19th century, they started using wagons called Vardos. They were often brightly coloured and decorated on the inside and outside. These days, the Romani mostly live in modern caravans, but you can still see Vardos at popular horse fairs such as Stow Fair*.

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About Learn Hot English

Great news! The latest issue of Hot English (198) is out now! Learn over 1,000 useful words and expressions and improve your listening skills with Learn Hot English! This month: Learn 20 words for describing emotions in English, so you can characterise friends, relatives and colleagues. Plus, 8 useful words and expressions for talking about DIY (home repairs), 10 useful words for the kitchen, idioms, phrasal verbs... plus: • Food – chocolate. The environment – carbon footprints. Story time – jokes in English. Holidays – postcards from abroad. Functional language – making requests. Grammar – relative clauses. Listening – accents. Language – how to learn phrasal verbs. British culture – nomadic people. Literature – Harry Potter. Celebrities – Emma Watson. Music – the music business. Robotics – famous robots. Food – meatballs. Cuisine – Jamie Oliver. Business – lawyers. World issues – the TED awards. • Accents – the Canadian accent. AND LOTS, LOTS MORE! By reading and listening to all this great content, you'll improve your English reading and listening skills and learn up to 1,000 useful words or expressions. Plus, you'll get a better job and pass English-language exams more easily. Guaranteed!