Communes of France
The commune is a level of administrative division in the French Republic. French communes are analogous to civil townships and incorporated municipalities in the United States and Canada, Gemeinden in Germany, comuni in Italy or ayuntamiento in Spain; the United Kingdom has no exact equivalent, as communes resemble districts in urban areas, but are closer to parishes in rural areas where districts are much larger. Communes are based on historical geographic communities or villages and are vested with significant powers to manage the populations and land of the geographic area covered; the communes are the fourth-level administrative divisions of France. Communes vary in size and area, from large sprawling cities with millions of inhabitants like Paris, to small hamlets with only a handful of inhabitants. Communes are based on pre-existing villages and facilitate local governance. All communes have names, but not all named geographic areas or groups of people residing together are communes, the difference residing in the lack of administrative powers.
Except for the municipal arrondissements of its largest cities, the communes are the lowest level of administrative division in France and are governed by elected officials with extensive autonomous powers to implement national policy. A commune is city, or other municipality. "Commune" in English has a historical bias, implies an association with socialist political movements or philosophies, collectivist lifestyles, or particular history. There is nothing intrinsically different between commune in French; the French word commune appeared in the 12th century, from Medieval Latin communia, for a large gathering of people sharing a common life. As of January 2015, there were 36,681 communes in France, 36,552 of them in metropolitan France and 129 of them overseas; this is a higher total than that of any other European country, because French communes still reflect the division of France into villages or parishes at the time of the French Revolution. The whole territory of the French Republic is divided into communes.
This is unlike some other countries, such as the United States, where unincorporated areas directly governed by a county or a higher authority can be found. There are only a few exceptions: COM of Saint-Martin, it was a commune inside the Guadeloupe région. The commune structure was abolished when Saint-Martin became an overseas collectivity on 22 February 2007. COM of Wallis and Futuna, which still is divided according to the three traditional chiefdoms. COM of Saint Barthélemy, it was a commune inside the Guadeloupe region. The commune structure was abolished when Saint-Barthélemy became an overseas collectivity on 22 February 2007. Furthermore, two regions without permanent habitation have no communes: TOM of the French Southern and Antarctic Lands Clipperton Island in the Pacific Ocean In metropolitan France, the average area of a commune in 2004 was 14.88 square kilometres. The median area of metropolitan France's communes at the 1999 census was smaller, at 10.73 square kilometres. The median area is a better measure of the area of a typical French commune.
This median area is smaller than that of most European countries. In Italy, the median area of communes is 22 km2. Switzerland and the Länder of Rhineland-Palatinate, Schleswig-Holstein, Thuringia in Germany were the only places in Europe where the communes had a smaller median area than in France; the communes of France's overseas départements such as Réunion and French Guiana are large by French standards. They group into the same commune several villages or towns with sizeable distances among them. In Réunion, demographic expansion and sprawling urbanization have resulted in the administrative splitting of some communes; the median population of metropolitan France's communes at the 1999 census was 380 inhabitants. Again this is a small number, here France stands apart in Europe, with the lowest communes' median population of all the European countries; this small median population of French communes can be compared with Italy, where the median population of communes in 2001 was 2,343 inhabitants, Belgium, or Spain.
The median population given here should not hide the fact that there are pronounced differences in size between French communes. As mentioned in the introduction, a commune can be a city of 2 million inhabitants such as Paris, a town of 10,000 inhabitants, or just a hamlet of 10 inhabitants. What the median population tells us is that the vast majority of the French communes only have a few hundred inhabitants. In metropolitan France just over 50 percent of the 36,683 communes have fewer than 500 inhabitants a
Baden-Württemberg is a state in southwest Germany, east of the Rhine, which forms the border with France. It is Germany's third-largest state, with an area of 11 million inhabitants. Baden-Württemberg is a parliamentary republic and sovereign, federated state, formed in 1952 by a merger of the states of Württemberg-Baden, Baden and Württemberg-Hohenzollern; the largest city in Baden-Württemberg is the state capital of Stuttgart, followed by Karlsruhe and Mannheim. Other cities are Freiburg im Breisgau, Heilbronn, Pforzheim and Ulm; the sobriquet Ländle is sometimes used as a synonym for Baden-Württemberg. Baden-Württemberg is formed from the historical territories of Baden, Prussian Hohenzollern, Württemberg, parts of Swabia. In 100 AD, the Roman Empire invaded and occupied Württemberg, constructing a limes along its northern borders. Over the course of the third century AD, the Alemanni forced the Romans to retreat west beyond the Rhine and Danube rivers. In 496 AD the Alemanni were defeated by a Frankish invasion led by Clovis I.
The Holy Roman Empire was established. The majority of people in this region continued to be Roman Catholics after the Protestant Reformation influenced populations in northern Germany. In the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries, numerous people emigrated from this rural area to the United States for economic reasons. After World War II, the Allies established three federal states in the territory of modern-day Baden-Württemberg: Württemberg-Hohenzollern, Württemberg-Baden. Baden and Württemberg-Hohenzollern were occupied by France, while Württemberg-Baden was occupied by the United States. In 1949, each state became a founding member of the Federal Republic of Germany, with Article 118 of the German constitution providing an accession procedure. On 16 December 1951, Württemberg-Baden, Württemberg-Hohenzollern and Baden voted via referendum in favor of a joint merger. Baden-Württemberg became a state in West Germany on 25 April 1952. Baden-Württemberg shares borders with the German states of Rhineland Palatinate and Bavaria, Switzerland.
Most of the major cities of Baden-Württemberg straddle the banks of the Neckar River, which runs downstream through the state past Tübingen, Heilbronn and Mannheim. The Rhine forms the western border as well as large portions of the southern border; the Black Forest, the main mountain range of the state, rises east of the Upper Rhine valley. The high plateau of the Swabian Alb, between the Neckar, the Black Forest, the Danube, is an important European watershed. Baden-Württemberg shares Lake Constance with Switzerland and Bavaria, the international borders within its waters not being defined, it shares the foothills of the Alps with Bavaria and the Austrian Vorarlberg, but Baden-Württemberg does not border Austria over land. The Danube River has its source in Baden-Württemberg near the town of Donaueschingen, in a place called Furtwangen in the Black Forest. Baden-Württemberg is divided into thirty-five districts and nine independent cities, both grouped into the four Administrative Districts of Freiburg, Stuttgart, Tübingen.
Map Baden-Württemberg contains nine additional independent cities not belonging to any district: The state parliament of Baden-Württemberg is the Landtag. The politics of Baden-Württemberg have traditionally been dominated by the conservative Christian Democratic Union of Germany, who until 2011 had led all but one government since the establishment of the state in 1952. In the Landtag elections held on 27 March 2011 voters replaced the Christian Democrats and centre-right Free Democrats coalition by a Greens-led alliance with the Social Democrats which secured a four-seat majority in the state parliament. From 1992 to 2001, the Republicans party held seats in the Landtag; the Baden-Württemberg General Auditing Office acts as an independent body to monitor the correct use of public funds by public offices. Although Baden-Württemberg has few natural resources compared to other regions of Germany, the state is among the most prosperous and wealthiest regions in Europe with a low unemployment rate historically.
A number of well-known enterprises are headquartered in the state, for example Daimler AG, Robert Bosch GmbH, Carl Zeiss AG, SAP SE and Heidelberger Druckmaschinen. In spite of this, Baden-Württemberg's economy is dominated by medium-sized enterprises. Although poor in workable natural resources and still rural in many areas, the region is industrialised. In 2003, there were 8,800 manufacturing enterprises with more than 20 employees, but only 384 with more than 500; the latter category accounts for 43% of the 1.2 million persons employed in industry. The Mittelstand or mid-sized company is the backbone of the Baden-Württemberg economy. Medium-sized businesses and a tradition of branching out into different industrial sectors have ensured specialization over a wide range. A fifth of the "old" Federal Republic's industrial gross value added is generated by Baden-Württemberg. Turnover for manufacturing in 2003 e
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
Heilbronn is a city in northern Baden-Württemberg, Germany. It is surrounded by Heilbronn County and, with 123,000 residents, it is the sixth-largest city in the state; the city on the Neckar is the seat of Heilbronn County. Heilbronn is the economic center of the Heilbronn-Franken region that includes most of northeast Baden-Württemberg. Furthermore, Heilbronn is known for its wine industry and is nicknamed Käthchenstadt, after Heinrich von Kleist's Das Käthchen von Heilbronn. Heilbronn is located in the northern corner of the Neckar basin at the bottom of the Wartberg, it occupies both banks of the Neckar, the highest spot inside city limits is the Schweinsberg with a height of 372 meters. Heilbronn is surrounded by vineyards. Heilbronn and its surroundings are located in the northern part of the larger Stuttgart metropolitan area; the city is the economic center of the Heilbronn-Franken region and is one of fourteen such cities in the Baden-Württemberg master plan of 2002. It serves Abstatt, Bad Rappenau, Bad Wimpfen, Brackenheim, Eberstatt, Eppingen, Gemmingen, Güglingen, Ittlingen, Lauffen am Neckar, Leingarten, Löwenstein, Neckarwestheim, Obersulm, Schwaigern, Talheim, Weinsberg, Wüstenrot, Zaberfeld as a regional economic centre.
Heilbronn shares a border with the following cities and towns, all part of Heilbronn County and listed here clockwise from the North: Bad Wimpfen, Erlenbach, Lehrensteinsfeld, Flein, Lauffen am Neckar, Leingarten, Schwaigern and Bad Rappenau. The city is divided into nine boroughs: The oldest traces of humans in and around Heilbronn date back to the Old Stone Age; the fertile Neckar floodplains in the Heilbronn basin aided early settlement by farmers and ranchers. The city limits of present-day Heilbronn contain. On, but still before AD, the Celts mined here for salt from brine. Under Roman Emperor Domitian the Romans pushed east away from the Rhine and the outer boundary of the Roman Empire was set at the Neckar-Odenwald Limes. A castle in today's borough of Böckingen was part of that limes, nearby numerous Roman villas and plantations were built. Around AD 150, the Neckar-Odenwald Limes became obsolete when the boundary of the Roman Empire was moved 30 km to the east, where it was subsequently fortified with the construction of the Upper Germanic Limes complete with parapet and trenches.
Around 260, the Romans surrendered the limes, the Alamanni became rulers of the Neckar basin. Between the 4th and 7th centuries, the area became part of the Frankish Empire, the first settlement was built in the general vicinity of the present center of town. In 741 Heilbronn is first mentioned in an official document of the Diocese of Würzburg as villa Helibrunna, in 841, King Louis the German set up court here for a period of time; the name Heilbrunna hints to a well, located not far from the basilica. In 1050 a significant settlement of Jews is noted in official documents, the Codex of the monastery in Hirsau documented Heilbronn's right to hold market days and mint coins, mentioning its harbor and vineyards as well; the name of the city became a widespread Jewish surname in many varieties, see Heilprin and Halperin. In 1225 Heilbronn was incorporated into the Hohenstaufen Empire as oppidum Heilecbrunnen. Oppidum signified a city fortified by parapet and trenches. During the 13th century, the Teutonic Knights obtained ownership of a large area south of Heilbronn which would remain owned by that order until German Mediatisation in 1805.
Starting in 1268, the order built the Deutschhof there as one of its residences. The church building of the order, located on the premises was modified and expanded several times: First in 1350 it was expanded it was remodeled in 1719, in 1977, it was consecrated as a cathedral. After the demise of the Staufen dynasty, King Rudolf I returned city status to Heilbronn in 1281 and installed a regal advocate to rule the city. In addition to the advocate he put a council in place, headed up by a mayor. Around 1300, the first city hall was erected in the market place and the Kilianskirche was expanded; the Neckar privilege gave the city the right to modify the flow of the river in 1333, which meant it now had the right to construct dams and mills. Because of the infrastructure thus created, during the 14th century Heilbronn grew attractive to merchants and craftspeople, who now demanded the right to determine their own fate. In 1371 Charles IV, Holy Roman Emperor, issued a new charter to the city. Now Heilbronn needed as such was an Imperial Free City.
Craftspeople and merchants were now represented in its council and the villages of Böckingen, Flein and Neckargartach became part of Heilbronn's territory. As an Imperial Free City Heilbronn was threatened by the ambitious House of Württemberg. A relationship with the Holy Roman Emperor and a treaty with the Electorate of the Palatinate in effect from 1417 to 1622 strengthened Heilbronn's position and kept the House of Württemberg at bay; the political stability enjoyed by the city during the 15th century enabled it to expand, many of its historic structures, such as the Kilianskirche, trace their origins to that era. Götz von Berlichingen spent three years in "kn
Departments of France
In the administrative divisions of France, the department is one of the three levels of government below the national level, between the administrative regions and the commune. Ninety-six departments are in metropolitan France, five are overseas departments, which are classified as regions. Departments are further subdivided into 334 arrondissements, themselves divided into cantons; each department is administered by an elected body called a departmental council. From 1800 to April 2015, these were called general councils; each council has a president. Their main areas of responsibility include the management of a number of social and welfare allowances, of junior high school buildings and technical staff, local roads and school and rural buses, a contribution to municipal infrastructures. Local services of the state administration are traditionally organised at departmental level, where the prefect represents the government; the departments were created in 1790 as a rational replacement of Ancien Régime provinces with a view to strengthen national unity.
All of them were named after physical geographical features, rather than after historical or cultural territories which could have their own loyalties. The division of France into departments was a project identified with the French revolutionary leader the Abbé Sieyès, although it had been discussed and written about by many politicians and thinkers; the earliest known suggestion of it is from 1764 in the writings of d'Argenson. They have inspired similar divisions in some of them former French colonies. Most French departments are assigned a two-digit number, the "Official Geographical Code", allocated by the Institut national de la statistique et des études économiques. Overseas departments have a three-digit number; the number is used, for example, in the postal code, was until used for all vehicle registration plates. While residents use the numbers to refer to their own department or a neighbouring one, more distant departments are referred to by their names, as few people know the numbers of all the departments.
For example, inhabitants of Loiret might refer to their department as "the 45". In 2014, President François Hollande proposed to abolish departmental councils by 2020, which would have maintained the departments as administrative divisions, to transfer their powers to other levels of governance; this reform project has since been abandoned. The first French territorial departments were proposed in 1665 by Marc-René d'Argenson to serve as administrative areas purely for the Ponts et Chaussées infrastructure administration. Before the French Revolution, France gained territory through the annexation of a mosaic of independent entities. By the close of the Ancien Régime, it was organised into provinces. During the period of the Revolution, these were dissolved in order to weaken old loyalties; the modern departments, as all-purpose units of the government, were created on 4 March 1790 by the National Constituent Assembly to replace the provinces with what the Assembly deemed a more rational structure.
Their boundaries served two purposes: Boundaries were chosen to break up France's historical regions in an attempt to erase cultural differences and build a more homogeneous nation. Boundaries were set so that every settlement in the country was within a day's ride of the capital of a department; this was a security measure, intended to keep the entire national territory under close control. This measure was directly inspired by the Great Terror, during which the government had lost control of many rural areas far from any centre of government; the old nomenclature was avoided in naming the new departments. Most were named after other physical features. Paris was in the department of Seine. Savoy became the department of Mont-Blanc; the number of departments 83, had been increased to 130 by 1809 with the territorial gains of the Republic and of the First French Empire. Following Napoleon's defeats in 1814–1815, the Congress of Vienna returned France to its pre-war size and the number of departments was reduced to 86.
In 1860, France acquired the County of Nice and Savoy, which led to the creation of three new departments. Two were added from the new Savoyard territory, while the department of Alpes-Maritimes was created from Nice and a portion of the Var department; the 89 departments were given numbers based on the alphabetical order of their names. The department of Bas-Rhin and parts of Meurthe, Moselle and Haut-Rhin were ceded to the German Empire in 1871, following France's defeat in the Franco-Prussian War. A small part of Haut-Rhin became known as the Territoire de Belfort; when France regained the ceded departments after World War I, the Territoire de Belfort was not re-integrated into Haut-Rhin. In 1922, it became France's 90th department; the Lorraine departments were not changed back to their original boundaries, a new Moselle department was created in the regaine
Bas-Rhin is a department in Alsace, a part of the Grand Est super-region of France. The name means "Lower Rhine", geographically speaking it belongs to the Upper Rhine region, it is the more populous and densely populated of the two departments of the traditional Alsace region, with 1,121,407 inhabitants in 2016. The prefecture and the General Council are based in Strasbourg; the INSEE and Post Code is 67. The inhabitants of the department are known as Bas-Rhinoises; the Rhine has always been of great historical and economic importance to the area, it forms the eastern border of Bas-Rhin. The area is home to some of the foothills of the Vosges Mountains. To the north of Bas-Rhin lies the Palatinate forest in the German State of Rhineland-Palatinate, the German State of Baden-Württemberg lies to the east. To the south lies the department of Haut-Rhin, the town of Colmar and southern Alsace, to the west the department of Moselle. On its south-western corner, Bas-Rhin joins the department of Vosges.
The Bas-Rhin has a continental-type climate, characterised by cold, dry winters and hot, stormy summers, due to the western protection provided by the Vosges. The average annual temperature is 7 °C on high ground; the annual maximum temperature is high. The average rainfall is 700 mm per year. Established according to data from the Infoclimat station at Strasbourg-Entzheim, over the period from 1961 to 1990; this is the last French department to have kept the term Bas meaning "Lower" in its name. Other departments using this prefix preferred to change their names - e.g.: Basses-Pyrenees in 1969 became Pyrénées-Atlantiques and Basses-Alpes in 1970 became the department of Alpes-de-Haute-Provence. The same phenomenon was observed for the inférieur departments such as Charente-Inférieure, Seine-Inférieure, Loire-Inférieure. Bas-Rhin is one of the original 83 departments created on 4 March 1790, during the French Revolution. On 14 January 1790 the National Constituent Assembly decreed: "- That Alsace be divided into two departments with Strasbourg and Colmar as their capitals.
In 1871 Bas-Rhin was annexed by Germany and became Bezirk Unterelsass in Reichsland Elsaß-Lothringen. Strasbourg, the chef lieu of Bas-Rhin is the official seat of the European Parliament as well as of the Council of Europe; the demography of Bas-Rhin is characterized by high density and high population growth since the 1950s. In January 2014 Bas-Rhin had 1,112,815 inhabitants and was 18th by population at the national level. In fifteen years, from 1999 to 2014, its population grew by more than 86,000 people, or about 5,800 people per year, but this variation is differentiated among the 517 communes. The population density of Bas-Rhin is 234 inhabitants per square kilometre in 2014, more than twice the average in France, 112 in 2009; the first census was conducted in 1801 and this count, renewed every five years from 1821, provides precise information on the evolution of population in the department. With 540,213 inhabitants in 1831, the department represented 1.66% of the total French population, 32,569,000 inhabitants.
From 1831 to 1866, the department gained 48,757 people, an increase of 0.26% on average per year compared to the national average of 0.48% over the same period. Demographic change between the Franco-Prussian War of 1870 and the First World War was higher than the national average. Over this period, the population increased by 100,532 inhabitants, an increase of 16.74%, compared to 10% nationally. The population increased by 9.23% between the two world wars from 1921 to 1936 compared to a national growth of 6.9%. Like other French departments, Bas-Rhin experienced a population boom after the Second World War, higher than the national level; the rate of population growth between 1946 and 2007 was 83.83%
Lupstein is a commune in the Bas-Rhin department in Grand Est in north-eastern France. Alois Kayser, Catholic pastor, active in Nauru, was born in Lupstein. Communes of the Bas-Rhin department INSEE commune file