Canada before WWI: British and Canadian Relations

As a fellow members of the common wealth Britain (the UK to be more specific) and Canada have had close relations for a long period of time.  However, before the first World War Canada’s relations with Britain were significantly better.  That is not to say they are strained in the present; “however, most English-speaking Canadians were proud to be British subjects” (Cranny & Moles, 2001, Pg 8) before the war as many Canadian citizens still had close ties to Britain.  This is largely in part to Canada being less of a culturally diverse country before the twentieth century; as “most Canadians were ethnocentric” (Cranny & Moles, 2001, Pg 9.)

However not all Canadians were fond of the British influence in Canada; specifically the French-Canadians.  “During the South- African War in 1899 many English-speaking Canadians wanted to participate.  However, many French-Canadians were opposed”(2013, Canada Foreign Relations.  Retrieved from  This was the case in the first World War as well.

The current relations of  Canada and Britain are not very eventful now however.  Canada has taken upon itself to become a rather independent nation.  However, there are still many signs of Canada’s close allegiance with Britain.  For example, the picture of the current monarch is still on Canadian currency.  As well, many roads, parks, towns and other municipal areas are named after British towns and nobles.  While Canada no longer has a predominantly British culture, its  British heritage is still very much present.

Flag of Commonwealth

Common Wealth. Common Wealth [Photograph; Flag of the Commonwealth”.] At: (Accessed on 08.15.13)


Cranny & Moles. (2001). Counterpoints: Exploring Canadian Issues.  Pearson Education Canada Inc., Toronto, Ontario.

J.J Mcullough (2013) 20th Century Canadian History.  Retrieved from

Norman L Nicholson (2013) Canada Foreign Relations.  Retrieved from


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