In the 19th century, when the British Empire reached a territorial size larger than that of any other empire in history, the phrase, "the sun never sets on the British Empire" was adopted, even though the phrase itself wasn't British. Originally coined in the 16th century to describe the empire of the Spanish, the phrase, "the empire on which the sun never sets" has since been employed at various times throughout history to describe global empires so expansive that at least one part of their territory was always in daylight. . Today, the phrase has
Over time, Britannia became Great Britain, eventually evolving into the independent countries comprising the United Kingdom, just as the British Empire gave rise to the Realm of Commonwealth Nations. The sun may have set on the British Empire. but the sentiment of the phrase survived. It will always be five o'clock somewhere, and it will always be Cape Henry's sun, which rose only once and, eventually, set.