Re: It's a tradition...
@ I ain't Spartacus
No matter how much I like the Brits I have studied, worked, met and sailed with, I just cannot understand this odd ability to claim you are <insert number> largest <insert anything> in the <world/Europe/EU>.
Most always wrong and without any reference. sometimes absolutely ridiculous claims. A few resent claims - second in aeronautics only to the USA - second largest contributor to the UN. I don't give a shit but I find it very odd. Perhaps you have a better insight into the British brain complexity.
About the GDP. What makes you think India (a country with a slightly larger population) should as a country have a smaller GDP than Britain or France. There are other methods to compare too*.
"The UK, a leading trading power and financial center, is the third largest economy in Europe after Germany and France."
COUNTRY COMPARISON :: GDP (PURCHASING POWER PARITY)
1 China $21,290,000,000,000 2016 est
2 European Union $19,970,000,000,000 2016 est
3 United States $18,570,000,000,000 2016 est.
4 India $8,662,000,000,000 2016 est.
5 Japan $5,238,000,000,000 2016 est.
6 Germany $3,980,000,000,000 2016 est.
7 Russia $3,751,000,000,000 2016 est.
8 Brazil $3,141,000,000,000 2016 est.
9 Indonesia $3,032,000,000,000 2016 est.
10 United Kingdom $2,786,000,000,000 2016 est.
11 France $2,734,000,000,000 2016 est.
Unsurprisingly the UK and France have now change position.
So where do you get your numbers, share them with us and do they really change the reality at all. (if your father is alive he's bigger than my father, and all of that).