Glorified in all its charms by Jerome K. Jerome, the Thames for England means the same thing as the Volga for Russia. It is not the longest river of its state, but besides the Volga there are the mighty Siberian rivers Lena, Yenisei and Ob. And, nevertheless, there is no Englishman’s heart that is nicer and more attractive than a river, with which so many legends and traditions are connected!
This is the second largest river in Great Britain and the first in England is 215 miles (346 kilometers). Its source is called Thames Head (head of Thames), it is located in the county of Gloucestershire. There is a Kembl village in its southern part. If you walk from it about one mile to the north, you can get into a place called the Cotswolds.
It is here that there are still many disputes over what is the actual length that the Thames has? The fact is that quite often, experts consider it to be the source of the very Seven Keys, where the Black River begins, the length of which “adds” to the Thames “extra” fifteen miles. And the mouth of the river, in the form of an estuary, leads the stream of the Thames into the North Sea.
Another disputed opinion is still connected with this dispute around the Seven Keys. The fact is that the Severn River has the title of the longest in the United Kingdom. Its length is 354 kilometers. But, if we take into account the length of the river Chern, the Thames turns out to be longer — 368 kilometers. Thus, as a natural river stream, this tandem becomes the longest in the UK.
Apparently, the Thames owes its greatness and significance in the history of England to the fact that its small area is located in London, and this makes the continental city as marine as Petersburg, through which the Neva passes.
Throughout its length, the Thames feeds on small streams and small rivers in the west and southeast of Britain. In total, more than 20 tributaries flow into it, the river has about 80 islands, and its sections, where salt water alternates with fresh water, create a great diversity of flora and fauna.
For many centuries of its existence, the Thames maintained its status of the coil and human nurse. It was the main transport route through which international trade was carried out, among other things. The port of London and the extensive system of British channels were her loyal assistants in this.
And since it was this river that was at the center of numerous events in the annals of England, it is not surprising that Robert Burns called it a “fluid history“.