Football Club de Nantes referred to as FC Nantes or Nantes, is a French association football club based in Nantes, Pays de la Loire. The club was founded on 21 April 1943, during World War II, as a result of local clubs based in the city coming together to form one large club. From 1992 to 2007, the club was referred to as FC Nantes Atlantique before reverting to its current name at the start of the 2007–08 season. Nantes play in the first division of French football. Nantes is one of the most successful clubs in French football, having won eight Ligue 1 titles, three Coupe de France wins and attained one Coupe de la Ligue victory; the club is famous for its jeu à la nantaise, its collective spirit advocated under coaches José Arribas, Jean-Claude Suaudeau and Raynald Denoueix and for its youth system, which has produced players such as Marcel Desailly, Didier Deschamps, Mickaël Landreau, Claude Makelele, Christian Karembeu and Jérémy Toulalan. As well as Les Canaris, Nantes is nicknamed Les jaunes et verts and La Maison Jaune.
The club was founded in 1943. The first match played by Nantes as a professional team took place at the Stade Olympique de Colombes against CA Paris, where Nantes triumphed 2–0; the first home match was a defeat of the same score against Troyes. The club finished fifth at the end of this first season following which the club's manager Aimé Nuic left the club following a dispute, was succeeded by Antoine Raab, who took over in a player-coach role. After winning 16 consecutive matches, Nantes lost 9–0 to Sochaux. In July 1991, the club re-instated Jean-Claude Suaudeau, in July 1992, after spending a fortnight in the second division due to an administrative decision by the DNCG, FC Nantes was renamed FC Nantes Atlantique, was able to take its place in the first division back, they won the French championship in 1994/95 and in 2000/01. In 2005, Nantes narrowly avoided relegation on the final day of the season by defeating Metz 1-0; the following season Nantes finished last in Ligue 1 and were relegated to Ligue 2 after spending over 40 consecutive seasons in Ligue 1.
In 2007, Nantes were promoted back to Ligue 1 at the first attempt but the following season they were relegated back to Ligue 2 after finishing 19th on the table. After spending 3 seasons in Ligue 2, Nantes were once again promoted to Ligue 1 in 2013. In their first season back in the top division, Nantes avoided relegation finishing 13th on the table. After two years of stability, in the 2016/2017 Ligue 1 season, Nantes finished a respectable 7th on the table. For the 2017/2018 season, former Leicester City boss Claudio Ranieri took over as manager and after 10 games in charge had Nantes sitting 3rd on the table just behind big spending Paris Saint-Germain and AS Monaco. In the second half of the 2017/2018 season, Nantes managed to only win 3 more games and finished 9th on the table. Claudio Ranieri announced his departure from the club after only one season. Nantes' home ground since 1984 has been the Stade de la Beaujoire-Louis Fontenau, which has a capacity of 38,128. FC Nantes former stadium was The Stade Marcel Saupin which the club played at from 1937 to 1984.
A new stadium is expected to be built and replace the Stade de la Beaujoire-Louis Fontenau as Nantes' home ground in 2022. As of 16 February 2019. Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality. Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality; as of 1 February 2019. Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality. Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality. Below are the notable former players who have represented Nantes in league and international competition since the club's foundation in 1943. To appear in the section below, a player must have played in at least 100 official matches for the club. For a complete list of FC Nantes players, see Category:FC Nantes players Ligue 1 Winners: 1964–65, 1965–66, 1972–73, 1976–77, 1979–80, 1982–83, 1994–95, 2000–01 Coupe de France Winners: 1978–79, 1998–99, 1999–2000 Coupe de la Ligue Winners: 1964–65 Trophée des Champions Winners: 1965, 1999, 2001 UEFA Champions League Semi-finalists: 1995–96 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup Semi-finalists: 1979–80 Cup of the Alps Winners: 1982 FC Nantes at UEFA Official website
A textile is a flexible material consisting of a network of natural or artificial fibers. Yarn is produced by spinning raw fibres of wool, cotton, hemp, or other materials to produce long strands. Textiles are formed by weaving, crocheting, knotting or tatting, felting, or braiding; the related words "fabric" and "cloth" and "material" are used in textile assembly trades as synonyms for textile. However, there are subtle differences in these terms in specialized usage. A textile is any material made of interlacing fibres, including carpeting and geotextiles. A fabric is a material made through weaving, spreading, crocheting, or bonding that may be used in production of further goods. Cloth may be used synonymously with fabric but is a piece of fabric, processed; the word'textile' is from Latin, from the adjective textilis, meaning'woven', from textus, the past participle of the verb texere,'to weave'. The word'fabric' derives from Latin, most from the Middle French fabrique, or'building, thing made', earlier as the Latin fabrica'workshop.
The word'cloth' derives from the Old English clað, meaning a cloth, woven or felted material to wrap around one, from Proto-Germanic kalithaz. The first clothes, worn at least 70,000 years ago and much earlier, were made of animal skins and helped protect early humans from the ice ages. At some point people learned to weave plant fibers into textiles; the discovery of dyed flax fibres in a cave in the Republic of Georgia dated to 34,000 BCE suggests textile-like materials were made in prehistoric times. The production of textiles is a craft whose speed and scale of production has been altered beyond recognition by industrialization and the introduction of modern manufacturing techniques. However, for the main types of textiles, plain weave, twill, or satin weave, there is little difference between the ancient and modern methods. Textiles have an assortment of uses, the most common of which are for clothing and for containers such as bags and baskets. In the household they are used in carpeting, upholstered furnishings, window shades, coverings for tables and other flat surfaces, in art.
In the workplace they are used in scientific processes such as filtering. Miscellaneous uses include flags, tents, handkerchiefs, cleaning rags, transportation devices such as balloons, kites and parachutes. Textiles are used in many traditional crafts such as sewing and embroidery. Textiles for industrial purposes, chosen for characteristics other than their appearance, are referred to as technical textiles. Technical textiles include textile structures for automotive applications, medical textiles, agrotextiles, protective clothing. In all these applications stringent performance requirements must be met. Woven of threads coated with zinc oxide nanowires, laboratory fabric has been shown capable of "self-powering nanosystems" using vibrations created by everyday actions like wind or body movements. Textiles are made from many materials, with four main sources: animal, plant and synthetic; the first three are natural. In the 20th century, they were supplemented by artificial fibres made from petroleum.
Textiles are made in various strengths and degrees of durability, from the finest microfibre made of strands thinner than one denier to the sturdiest canvas. Textile manufacturing terminology has a wealth of descriptive terms, from light gauze-like gossamer to heavy grosgrain cloth and beyond. Animal textiles are made from hair, skin or silk. Wool refers to the hair of the domestic sheep or goat, distinguished from other types of animal hair in that the individual strands are coated with scales and crimped, the wool as a whole is coated with a wax mixture known as lanolin, waterproof and dirtproof. Woollen refers to a bulkier yarn produced from carded, non-parallel fibre, while worsted refers to a finer yarn spun from longer fibres which have been combed to be parallel. Wool is used for warm clothing. Cashmere, the hair of the Indian cashmere goat, mohair, the hair of the North African angora goat, are types of wool known for their softness. Other animal textiles which are made from hair or fur are alpaca wool, vicuña wool, llama wool, camel hair used in the production of coats, ponchos and other warm coverings.
Angora refers to the long, soft hair of the angora rabbit. Qiviut is the fine inner wool of the muskox. Wadmal is a coarse cloth made of wool, produced in Scandinavia 1000~1500 CE. Sea silk is an fine and valuable fabric, made from the silky filaments or byssus secreted by a gland in the foot of pen shells. Silk is an animal textile made from the fibres of the cocoon of the Chinese silkworm, spun into a smooth fabric prized for its softness. There are two main ty
Republic of the Congo
The Republic of the Congo known as Congo-Brazzaville, the Congo Republic or the Congo, is a country located in the western coast of Central Africa. It is bordered by five countries: Gabon to its west; the region was dominated by Bantu-speaking tribes at least 3,000 years ago, who built trade links leading into the Congo River basin. Congo was part of the French colony of Equatorial Africa; the Republic of the Congo was established on the 28th of November 1958 but gained independence from France in 1960. The sovereign state has had multi-party elections since 1992, although a democratically elected government was ousted in the 1997 Republic of the Congo Civil War, President Denis Sassou Nguesso, who first came to power in 1979, has ruled for 33 of the past 38 years; the Republic of the Congo has become the fourth-largest oil producer in the Gulf of Guinea, providing the country with a degree of prosperity despite political and economic instability in some areas and unequal distribution of oil revenue nationwide.
Congo's economy is dependent on the oil sector, economic growth has slowed since the post-2015 drop in oil prices. Bantu-speaking peoples who founded tribes during the Bantu expansions displaced and absorbed the earliest inhabitants of the region, the Pygmy people, about 1500 BC; the Bakongo, a Bantu ethnic group that occupied parts of present-day Angola and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, formed the basis for ethnic affinities and rivalries among those countries. Several Bantu kingdoms—notably those of the Kongo, the Loango, the Teke—built trade links leading into the Congo River basin; the Portuguese explorer Diogo Cão reached the mouth of the Congo in 1484. Commercial relationships grew between the inland Bantu kingdoms and European merchants who traded various commodities, manufactured goods, people captured from the hinterlands. After centuries as a major hub for transatlantic trade, direct European colonization of the Congo river delta began in the late 19th century, subsequently eroding the power of the Bantu societies in the region.
The area north of the Congo River came under French sovereignty in 1880 as a result of Pierre de Brazza's treaty with King Makoko of the Bateke. This Congo Colony became known first as French Congo as Middle Congo in 1903. In 1908, France organized French Equatorial Africa, comprising Middle Congo, Gabon and Oubangui-Chari; the French designated Brazzaville as the federal capital. Economic development during the first 50 years of colonial rule in Congo centered on natural-resource extraction; the methods were brutal: construction of the Congo–Ocean Railroad following World War I has been estimated to have cost at least 14,000 lives. During the Nazi occupation of France during World War II, Brazzaville functioned as the symbolic capital of Free France between 1940 and 1943; the Brazzaville Conference of 1944 heralded a period of major reform in French colonial policy. Congo benefited from the postwar expansion of colonial administrative and infrastructure spending as a result of its central geographic location within AEF and the federal capital at Brazzaville.
It received a local legislature after the adoption of the 1946 constitution that established the Fourth Republic. Following the revision of the French constitution that established the Fifth Republic in 1958, the AEF dissolved into its constituent parts, each of which became an autonomous colony within the French Community. During these reforms, Middle Congo became known as the Republic of the Congo in 1958 and published its first constitution in 1959. Antagonism between the Mbochis and the Laris and Kongos resulted in a series of riots in Brazzaville in February 1959, which the French Army subdued. New elections took place in April 1959. By the time the Congo became independent in August 1960, the former opponent of Youlou, agreed to serve under him. Youlou became the first President of the Republic of the Congo. Since the political tension was so high in Pointe-Noire, Youlou moved the capital to Brazzaville; the Republic of the Congo received full independence from France on 15 August 1960. Youlou ruled as the country's first president until labour elements and rival political parties instigated a three-day uprising that ousted him.
The Congolese military took charge of the country, installed a civilian provisional government headed by Alphonse Massamba-Débat. Under the 1963 constitution, Massamba-Débat was elected President for a five-year term. During Massamba-Débat's term in office the regime adopted "scientific socialism" as the country's constitutional ideology. In 1965, Congo established relations with the Soviet Union, the People's Republic of China, North Korea and North Vietnam. Massamba-Débat's regime invited several hundred Cuban army troops into the country to train his party's militia units and these troops helped his government survive a coup d'état in 1966 led by paratroopers loyal to future President Marien Ngouabi. Massamba-Débat was unable to reconcile various institutional and ideological factions within the country and his regime ended abruptly with a bloodless coup in September 1968. Ngouabi, who had participated in the coup, assumed the presidency on 31 December 1968. One year President Ngouabi proclaimed Congo Africa's first "people's republic"
Fulham Football Club is a professional association football club based in Fulham, West London, England. Founded in 1879, they compete in the Premier League, the top tier of English football, they are the oldest football club from London to play in the Football League. The club has spent 26 seasons in English football's top division, the majority of these in two spells during the 1960s and 2000s; the latter spell was associated with former chairman Mohamed Al-Fayed, after the club had climbed up from the fourth tier in the 1990s. Fulham have reached two major finals: in 1975, as a Second Division team, they contested the FA Cup Final for the only time in their history, losing 2–0 to West Ham United, in 2010 they reached the final of the UEFA Europa League, which they contested with Atlético Madrid in Hamburg, losing 2–1 after extra time. Fulham were formed in 1879 as Fulham St Andrew's Church Sunday School F. C. founded by worshipers at the Church of England on West Kensington. Fulham's mother church still stands today with a plaque commemorating the team's foundation.
They won the West London Amateur Cup in 1887 and, having shortened the name from Fulham Excelsior to its present form in 1888, they won the West London League in 1893 at the first attempt. One of the club's first kits was half red, half white shirts with white shorts worn in the 1886–87 season. Fulham started playing at their current ground at Craven Cottage in 1896, their first game against now defunct rivals Minerva. Fulham are one of the oldest established clubs in southern England playing professional football, though there are many non-league sides like Kent side Cray Wanderers who are several decades older; the club gained professional status on 12 December 1898, the same year that they were admitted into the Southern League's Second Division. They were the second club from London to turn professional, following Arsenal named Royal Arsenal 1891, they adopted a white kit during the 1900 -- 01 season. In 1902 -- 03, the club won promotion from this division; the club's first recorded all-white club kit came in 1903, since the club has been playing in all-white shirts and black shorts, with socks going through various evolutions of black and/or white, but are now white-only.
The club won the Southern League twice, in 1905–06 and 1906–07. Fulham joined The Football League after the second of their Southern League triumphs; the club's first league game, playing in the Second Division's 1907–08 season, saw them lose 1–0 at home to Hull City in September 1907. The first win came a few days at Derby County's Baseball Ground by a score line of 1–0. Fulham finished the season three points short of promotion in fourth place; the club progressed all the way to the semi-final of that season's FA Cup, a run that included an 8–3 away win at Luton Town. In the semi-final, they were beaten, 6–0, by Newcastle United; this is still a record loss for an FA Cup semi-final game. Two years the club won the London Challenge Cup in the 1909–10 season. Fulham's first season in Division Two turned out to be the highest that the club would finish for 21 years, until in 1927–28 when the club were relegated to the 3rd Division South, created in 1920. Hussein Hegazi, an Egyptian forward, was one of the first non-British players to appear in The Football League, though he only played one game for Fulham in 1911, marked with a goal, afterwards playing for non-league Dulwich Hamlet.
During this period and politician Henry Norris was the club chairman and curiously he had an indirect role in the foundation of Fulham's local rivals Chelsea. When he rejected an offer from businessman Gus Mears to move Fulham to land where the present-day Chelsea stadium Stamford Bridge is situated, Mears decided to create his own team to occupy the ground. In 1910, Norris started to combine his role at Fulham with the chairmanship of Arsenal. Fulham became the first British team to sell hot dogs at their ground in 1926. Fulham had several high-profile international players during the 1920s, including Len Oliver and Albert Barrett. After finishing fifth and ninth in their first three seasons in the Third Division South, Fulham won the division in the 1931–32 season. In doing so they beat Torquay United 10–2, won 24 out of 42 games and scored 111 goals, thus being promoted back to the Second Division; the next season they missed out on a second consecutive promotion, finishing third behind Tottenham Hotspur and Stoke City.
A mixed bag of league performances followed, although the club reached another FA Cup semi-final during the 1935–36 season. Fulham were to draw with Austria in 1936 before Anschluss. On 8 October 1938, Craven Cottage saw its all-time highest attendance at a match against Millwall, with a crowd of 49,335 watching the game. League and cup football were disrupted by the outbreak of World War II in 1939, with the Football League split into regional divisions temporarily, with a national Football League War Cup and a London War Cup up for grabs. Craven Cottage was used like many grounds for training of the army youth reserves. Post-war, a full league programme was only restored for 1946–47. In the third season of what is now considered the modern era of football, Fulham finished top of the Second Division, with a win-loss-draw record of 24–9–9. John Fox Watson made a pioneering transfer to Real Madrid in 1948, becoming one of the first players from the United Kingdom to sign for a high-profile side abroad.
Promotion to the top tier of English football saw the club perform poorly, finishing 17th in their first y
Brittany national football team
The Brittany football select is the professional football team of Brittany, France. It is administered by the Breton Football Association, it is characterised as one of the six Celtic nations. Its games are held under the auspices of the French Football Federation and FIFA Regulations Amateur football in Brittany is administered by both the Ligue de Bretagne and the Ligue Atlantique, which are regional associations within the French FA. Brittany plays unofficial internationals. BFA has a pool of around 100 players in the first three professional divisions to choose from, some of them with proven international football experience. Brittany's Stéphane Guivarc'h won the 1998 World Cup with France. Brittany notably held Cameroon to a 1–1 draw before the 1998 World Cup finals, featuring Paul Le Guen. Six games had to be called off between 1999 and 2005 because of the French FA administration, which contradicted its own rules; the head of the French FA administration changed and BFA recovered in order to resume its activities in 2008.
Its latest game was played versus Mali on 28 May 2013. BFA offered other Celtic nations to join in a Celtic Nations Championship between 1985 and 1987. On 9 September 1985, BFA Secretary Fañch Gaume, visiting Cardiff on the eve of a World Cup qualifier between Wales and Scotland, sounded both the FA of Wales and the Scottish FA about participation to a Celtic Nations Cup. Informal conversations were followed up by correspondence and further personal exchanges, whenever the opportunity presented itself before international games. While Wales showed a genuine interest, the offer fell on barren ground with Scotland. Rejection letters from the SFA for non-entry stated the difficulties to find suitable dates but, as the Sports Editor of "The Glasgow Herald" Jim Reynolds presented it: "It is just two years since England and Scotland broke up the British International Championship by calling a halt to regular games featuring Northern Ireland and Wales. So, the chances of a Celtic Championship involving Scotland must be remote."
Brittany renewed its claims to organise and take part in the new Celtic Nations Cup with the Republic of Ireland and Wales by 2015 at the earliest or 2017. ° game agreed but not played because of French FA administration. 1988: Jean-Louis Lamour and Marc Rastoll 1998: Georges Eo and René Le Lamer 2000/2008: Serge Le Dizet 2010: Pierre-Yves David 2011: Michel Audrain 2014: Claude Le Roy 2016: Raymond Domenech and Michel Audrain To be included in the Breton squad, according to FIFA national teams rules, it is eligible a player: - born into one of five historical Breton departments. - with parents from Brittany. - with grandparents from Brittany - grown up in Brittany since the age of seven. Opponents: Cm, Cg, Cs, Gq, Oi, Tg, Us. Last-minute defections through injury or illness: 1998: Sylvain Ripoll, Ronan Salaün 2000: Claude Michel 2008: Mathieu Bouyer, Romain Danzé, Yoann Gourcuff, Fabien Lemoine 2010: Hassan Ahamada, Étienne Didot, Jérémy Menez, Fabien Robert 2011: Florent Besnard, Mathieu Bouyer Players in bold have won the FIFA World Cup Players in underlined have won a continental championships Argentina Cambodia Comoros Ivory Coast France Guinea Madagascar Martinique Mauritius Niger Norway Official website of Football Association of Brittany
Belgium the Kingdom of Belgium, is a country in Western Europe. It is bordered by the Netherlands to the north, Germany to the east, Luxembourg to the southeast, France to the southwest, the North Sea to the northwest, it has a population of more than 11.4 million. The capital and largest city is Brussels; the sovereign state is a federal constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary system. Its institutional organisation is structured on both regional and linguistic grounds, it is divided into three autonomous regions: Flanders in the north, Wallonia in the south, the Brussels-Capital Region. Brussels is the smallest and most densely populated region, as well as the richest region in terms of GDP per capita. Belgium is home to two main linguistic groups or Communities: the Dutch-speaking Flemish Community, which constitutes about 59 percent of the population, the French-speaking Community, which comprises about 40 percent of all Belgians. A small German-speaking Community, numbering around one percent, exists in the East Cantons.
The Brussels-Capital Region is bilingual, although French is the dominant language. Belgium's linguistic diversity and related political conflicts are reflected in its political history and complex system of governance, made up of six different governments. Belgium was part of an area known as the Low Countries, a somewhat larger region than the current Benelux group of states that included parts of northern France and western Germany, its name is derived after the Roman province of Gallia Belgica. From the end of the Middle Ages until the 17th century, the area of Belgium was a prosperous and cosmopolitan centre of commerce and culture. Between the 16th and early 19th centuries, Belgium served as the battleground between many European powers, earning the moniker the "Battlefield of Europe", a reputation strengthened by both world wars; the country emerged in 1830 following the Belgian Revolution. Belgium participated in the Industrial Revolution and, during the course of the 20th century, possessed a number of colonies in Africa.
The second half of the 20th century was marked by rising tensions between the Dutch-speaking and the French-speaking citizens fueled by differences in language and culture and the unequal economic development of Flanders and Wallonia. This continuing antagonism has led to several far-reaching reforms, resulting in a transition from a unitary to a federal arrangement during the period from 1970 to 1993. Despite the reforms, tensions between the groups have remained, if not increased. Unemployment in Wallonia is more than double that of Flanders. Belgium is one of the six founding countries of the European Union and hosts the official seats of the European Commission, the Council of the European Union, the European Council, as well as a seat of the European Parliament in the country's capital, Brussels. Belgium is a founding member of the Eurozone, NATO, OECD, WTO, a part of the trilateral Benelux Union and the Schengen Area. Brussels hosts several of the EU's official seats as well as the headquarters of many major international organizations such as NATO.
Belgium is a developed country, with an advanced high-income economy. It has high standards of living, quality of life, education, is categorized as "very high" in the Human Development Index, it ranks as one of the safest or most peaceful countries in the world. The name "Belgium" is derived from Gallia Belgica, a Roman province in the northernmost part of Gaul that before Roman invasion in 100 BC, was inhabited by the Belgae, a mix of Celtic and Germanic peoples. A gradual immigration by Germanic Frankish tribes during the 5th century brought the area under the rule of the Merovingian kings. A gradual shift of power during the 8th century led the kingdom of the Franks to evolve into the Carolingian Empire; the Treaty of Verdun in 843 divided the region into Middle and West Francia and therefore into a set of more or less independent fiefdoms which, during the Middle Ages, were vassals either of the King of France or of the Holy Roman Emperor. Many of these fiefdoms were united in the Burgundian Netherlands of the 15th centuries.
Emperor Charles V extended the personal union of the Seventeen Provinces in the 1540s, making it far more than a personal union by the Pragmatic Sanction of 1549 and increased his influence over the Prince-Bishopric of Liège. The Eighty Years' War divided the Low Countries into the northern United Provinces and the Southern Netherlands; the latter were ruled successively by the Spanish and the Austrian Habsburgs and comprised most of modern Belgium. This was the theatre of most Franco-Spanish and Franco-Austrian wars during the 17th and 18th centuries. Following the campaigns of 1794 in the French Revolutionary Wars, the Low Countries—including territories that were never nominally under Habsburg rule, such as the Prince-Bishopric of Liège—were annexed by the French First Republic, ending Austrian rule in the region; the reunification of the Low Countries as the United Kingdom of the Netherlands occurred at the dissolution of the First French Empire in 1815, after the defeat of Napo
France the French Republic, is a country whose territory consists of metropolitan France in Western Europe and several overseas regions and territories. The metropolitan area of France extends from the Mediterranean Sea to the English Channel and the North Sea, from the Rhine to the Atlantic Ocean, it is bordered by Belgium and Germany to the northeast and Italy to the east, Andorra and Spain to the south. The overseas territories include French Guiana in South America and several islands in the Atlantic and Indian oceans; the country's 18 integral regions span a combined area of 643,801 square kilometres and a total population of 67.3 million. France, a sovereign state, is a unitary semi-presidential republic with its capital in Paris, the country's largest city and main cultural and commercial centre. Other major urban areas include Lyon, Toulouse, Bordeaux and Nice. During the Iron Age, what is now metropolitan France was inhabited by a Celtic people. Rome annexed the area in 51 BC, holding it until the arrival of Germanic Franks in 476, who formed the Kingdom of Francia.
The Treaty of Verdun of 843 partitioned Francia into Middle Francia and West Francia. West Francia which became the Kingdom of France in 987 emerged as a major European power in the Late Middle Ages following its victory in the Hundred Years' War. During the Renaissance, French culture flourished and a global colonial empire was established, which by the 20th century would become the second largest in the world; the 16th century was dominated by religious civil wars between Protestants. France became Europe's dominant cultural and military power in the 17th century under Louis XIV. In the late 18th century, the French Revolution overthrew the absolute monarchy, established one of modern history's earliest republics, saw the drafting of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, which expresses the nation's ideals to this day. In the 19th century, Napoleon established the First French Empire, his subsequent Napoleonic Wars shaped the course of continental Europe. Following the collapse of the Empire, France endured a tumultuous succession of governments culminating with the establishment of the French Third Republic in 1870.
France was a major participant in World War I, from which it emerged victorious, was one of the Allies in World War II, but came under occupation by the Axis powers in 1940. Following liberation in 1944, a Fourth Republic was established and dissolved in the course of the Algerian War; the Fifth Republic, led by Charles de Gaulle, remains today. Algeria and nearly all the other colonies became independent in the 1960s and retained close economic and military connections with France. France has long been a global centre of art and philosophy, it hosts the world's fourth-largest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites and is the leading tourist destination, receiving around 83 million foreign visitors annually. France is a developed country with the world's sixth-largest economy by nominal GDP, tenth-largest by purchasing power parity. In terms of aggregate household wealth, it ranks fourth in the world. France performs well in international rankings of education, health care, life expectancy, human development.
France is considered a great power in global affairs, being one of the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council with the power to veto and an official nuclear-weapon state. It is a leading member state of the European Union and the Eurozone, a member of the Group of 7, North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the World Trade Organization, La Francophonie. Applied to the whole Frankish Empire, the name "France" comes from the Latin "Francia", or "country of the Franks". Modern France is still named today "Francia" in Italian and Spanish, "Frankreich" in German and "Frankrijk" in Dutch, all of which have more or less the same historical meaning. There are various theories as to the origin of the name Frank. Following the precedents of Edward Gibbon and Jacob Grimm, the name of the Franks has been linked with the word frank in English, it has been suggested that the meaning of "free" was adopted because, after the conquest of Gaul, only Franks were free of taxation.
Another theory is that it is derived from the Proto-Germanic word frankon, which translates as javelin or lance as the throwing axe of the Franks was known as a francisca. However, it has been determined that these weapons were named because of their use by the Franks, not the other way around; the oldest traces of human life in what is now France date from 1.8 million years ago. Over the ensuing millennia, Humans were confronted by a harsh and variable climate, marked by several glacial eras. Early hominids led a nomadic hunter-gatherer life. France has a large number of decorated caves from the upper Palaeolithic era, including one of the most famous and best preserved, Lascaux. At the end of the last glacial period, the climate became milder. After strong demographic and agricultural development between the 4th and 3rd millennia, metallurgy appeared at the end of the 3rd millennium working gold and bronze, iron. France has numerous megalithic sites from the Neolithic period, including the exceptiona