Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines is a country in the Lesser Antilles island arc, in the southern portion of the Windward Islands, which lies in the West Indies at the southern end of the eastern border of the Caribbean Sea where the latter meets the Atlantic Ocean. The sovereign state is frequently known as Saint Vincent, its 389 km2 territory consists of the main island of Saint Vincent and the northern two-thirds of the Grenadines, which are a chain of 32 smaller islands including Saint Vincent. Some of The smaller chain of islands which as known as the Grenadine Islands includes those that are inhabited: Bequia, Union Island, Palm Island, Young Island and those that are uninhabited: Tobago cays, Petit Saint Vincent, Bettowia, Petite mustique and Petit Nevis. Most of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines lies within the Hurricane Alley. To the north of Saint Vincent lies Saint Lucia and to the east is Barbados. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines is a densely populated country for its size with 109,643 inhabitants.
Kingstown is main port. Saint Vincent has a French and British colonial history, is now part of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States, CARICOM, the Commonwealth of Nations, the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas and the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States; the main mother tongue is Vincentian Creole and the official language is English. The island now known as Saint Vincent was named Youloumain by the native Island Caribs who called themselves Kalina/Carina; the Caribs aggressively prevented European settlement on Saint Vincent until 1719. Prior to this enslaved Africans, who had either been shipwrecked or who had escaped from Barbados, Saint Lucia and Grenada and sought refuge in mainland Saint Vincent, intermarried with the Caribs and became known as Black Caribs or Garifuna; the first Europeans to occupy St. Vincent were the French. Following a series of wars and peace treaties, the islands were ceded to the British. While the English were the first to lay claim to St Vincent in 1627, the French centred on the island of Martinique would be the first European settlers on the island when they established their first colony at Barrouallie on the Leeward side of St Vincent in 1719.
The French settlers cultivated coffee, indigo and sugar on plantations worked by African slaves. The British captured the island from the French during the Seven Years' War fought between 1754 and 1763. St Vincent was ceded to Great Britain by the Treaty of Paris, after which friction between the British and the Caribs led to the First Carib War. On taking control of the island in 1763, the British laid the foundations of Fort Charlotte; the island was restored to French rule in 1779 and regained by the British under the Treaty of Versailles. Between 1783 and 1796, there was again conflict between the British and the Black Caribs, who were led by Paramount Chief Joseph Chatoyer. Between 1795 and 1796, with French support from Martinique, the Black Caribs fought a series of battles against the British, their uprising was put down, resulting in 5,000 Black Caribs being exiled to the tiny island of Baliceaux off the coast of Bequia. Conflict between the British and the Black Caribs continued until 1796.
In 1797 British General Sir Ralph Abercromby put an end to the open conflict by crushing an uprising, supported by the French radical, Victor Hugues. The British deported more than 5,000 Black Caribs to an island off the coast of Honduras. In 1806 the building of Fort Charlotte was completed; the La Soufriere volcano erupted in 1812. Like the French before them, the British used African slaves to work plantations of sugar, indigo, tobacco and cocoa until full emancipation in 1838; the economy went into a period of decline with many landowners abandoning their estates and leaving the land to be cultivated by liberated slaves. Slavery was abolished in Saint Vincent in 1834, an apprenticeship period followed which ended in 1838. After its end, labour shortages on the plantations resulted, this was addressed by the immigration of indentured servants. In the late 1840s many Portuguese immigrants arrived from Madeira and between 1861 and 1888 shiploads of East Indian labourers arrived. Conditions remained harsh for both former slaves and immigrant agricultural workers, as depressed world sugar prices kept the economy stagnant until the turn of the century.
In 1903, La Soufrière volcano erupted. Much farmland was damaged, the economy deteriorated. From 1763 until its independence in 1979, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines passed through various stages of colonial status under the British. A representative assembly was authorized in 1776, Crown Colony government was installed in 1877, a legislative council was created in 1925, universal adult suffrage was granted in 1951. During the period of its control of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Britain made several unsuccessful attempts to affiliate the island with other Windward Islands, with the aim of simplifying British control in the region through a single unified administration. In the 1960s, several regional islands under British control, including Saint Vincent made an independent attempt to unify themselves politically; the unification was to be called the West Indies Federation and was driven by a desire to gain independence from British government. The attempt collapsed in 1962. Saint Vincent was granted "associate statehood" status by
United States dollar
The United States dollar is the official currency of the United States and its territories per the United States Constitution since 1792. In practice, the dollar is divided into 100 smaller cent units, but is divided into 1000 mills for accounting; the circulating paper money consists of Federal Reserve Notes that are denominated in United States dollars. Since the suspension in 1971 of convertibility of paper U. S. currency into any precious metal, the U. S. dollar is, de facto, fiat money. As it is the most used in international transactions, the U. S. dollar is the world's primary reserve currency. Several countries use it as their official currency, in many others it is the de facto currency. Besides the United States, it is used as the sole currency in two British Overseas Territories in the Caribbean: the British Virgin Islands and Turks and Caicos Islands. A few countries use the Federal Reserve Notes for paper money, while still minting their own coins, or accept U. S. dollar coins. As of June 27, 2018, there are $1.67 trillion in circulation, of which $1.62 trillion is in Federal Reserve notes.
Article I, Section 8 of the U. S. Constitution provides that the Congress has the power "To coin money". Laws implementing this power are codified at 31 U. S. C. § 5112. Section 5112 prescribes the forms; these coins are both designated in Section 5112 as "legal tender" in payment of debts. The Sacagawea dollar is one example of the copper alloy dollar; the pure silver dollar is known as the American Silver Eagle. Section 5112 provides for the minting and issuance of other coins, which have values ranging from one cent to 100 dollars; these other coins are more described in Coins of the United States dollar. The Constitution provides that "a regular Statement and Account of the Receipts and Expenditures of all public Money shall be published from time to time"; that provision of the Constitution is made specific by Section 331 of Title 31 of the United States Code. The sums of money reported in the "Statements" are being expressed in U. S. dollars. The U. S. dollar may therefore be described as the unit of account of the United States.
The word "dollar" is one of the words in the first paragraph of Section 9 of Article I of the Constitution. There, "dollars" is a reference to the Spanish milled dollar, a coin that had a monetary value of 8 Spanish units of currency, or reales. In 1792 the U. S. Congress passed a Coinage Act. Section 9 of that act authorized the production of various coins, including "DOLLARS OR UNITS—each to be of the value of a Spanish milled dollar as the same is now current, to contain three hundred and seventy-one grains and four sixteenth parts of a grain of pure, or four hundred and sixteen grains of standard silver". Section 20 of the act provided, "That the money of account of the United States shall be expressed in dollars, or units... and that all accounts in the public offices and all proceedings in the courts of the United States shall be kept and had in conformity to this regulation". In other words, this act designated the United States dollar as the unit of currency of the United States. Unlike the Spanish milled dollar, the U.
S. dollar is based upon a decimal system of values. In addition to the dollar the coinage act established monetary units of mill or one-thousandth of a dollar, cent or one-hundredth of a dollar, dime or one-tenth of a dollar, eagle or ten dollars, with prescribed weights and composition of gold, silver, or copper for each, it was proposed in the mid-1800s that one hundred dollars be known as a union, but no union coins were struck and only patterns for the $50 half union exist. However, only cents are in everyday use as divisions of the dollar. XX9 per gallon, e.g. $3.599, more written as $3.599⁄10. When issued in circulating form, denominations equal to or less than a dollar are emitted as U. S. coins while denominations equal to or greater than a dollar are emitted as Federal Reserve notes. Both one-dollar coins and notes are produced today, although the note form is more common. In the past, "paper money" was issued in denominations less than a dollar and gold coins were issued for circulation up to the value of $20.
The term eagle was used in the Coinage Act of 1792 for the denomination of ten dollars, subsequently was used in naming gold coins. Paper currency less than one dollar in denomination, known as "fractional currency", was sometimes pejoratively referred to as "shinplasters". In 1854, James Guthrie Secretary of the Treasury, proposed creating $100, $50 and $25 gold coins, which were referred to as a "Union", "Half Union", "Quarter Union", thus implying a denomination of 1 Union = $100. Today, USD notes are made from cotton fiber paper, unlike most common paper, made of wood fiber. U. S. coins are produced by the United States Mint. U. S. dollar banknotes are printed by the Bureau of Engraving and Printing and, since 1914, have been issued by t
Danish West Indies
The Danish West Indies or Danish Antilles was a Danish colony in the Caribbean, consisting of the islands of Saint Thomas with 32 square miles. The Danish West India Guinea Company annexed the uninhabited island of Saint Thomas in 1672 and St. John in 1675. In 1733, Saint Croix was purchased from the French West India Company; when the Danish company went bankrupt in 1755, the King of Denmark–Norway assumed direct control of the three islands. Britain occupied the Danish West Indies during the Napoleonic Wars. Danish colonizers in the West Indies aimed to exploit the profitable triangular trade, involving the export of firearms and other manufactured goods to Africa in exchange for slaves who were transported to the Caribbean to work the sugar plantations; the final stage of the triangle involved the export of cargos of rum to Denmark. The economy of the Danish West Indies depended on slavery. After a rebellion, slavery was abolished in 1848, leading to the near economic collapse of the plantations.
In 1852 the Danish parliament first debated the sale of the unprofitable colony. Denmark tried several times to sell or exchange the Danish West Indies in the late 19th and early 20th centuries: to the United States and to the German Empire respectively; the islands were sold for 25 million dollars to the United States, which took over the administration on 31 March 1917, renaming the islands the United States Virgin Islands. Merchants in Copenhagen asked King Christian IV for permission to establish a West Indian trading company in 1622, but by the time an eight-year monopoly on trade with the West Indies, Virginia and Guinea was granted on 25 January 1625, the failure of the Danish East India and Iceland Companies and the beginning of Danish involvement in the Thirty Years' War dried up any interest in the idea. Prince Frederick organized a trading mission to Barbados in 1647 under Gabriel Gomez and the de Casseres brothers, but it and a 1651 expedition of two ships were unsuccessful, it was not until Erik Smit's private 1652 expedition aboard the Fortuna was successful that interest in the West Indies' trade grew into an interest in the creation of a new Danish colony.
Smit's 1653 expedition and a separate expedition of five ships were quite successful, but Smit's third found his two vessels captured for a loss of 32,000 rigsdaler. In August two years a Danish flotilla was destroyed by a hurricane. Smit returned from his fourth expedition in 1663 and formally proposed the settlement of St. Thomas to the king in April 1665. After only three weeks' deliberation, the scheme was approved and Smit was named governor. Settlers departed aboard the Eendragt on 1 July, but the expedition was ill-starred: the ship hit two large storms and suffered from fire before reaching its destination, it was raided by English privateers prosecuting the Second Anglo-Dutch War. Smit died of illness, a second band of privateers stole the ship and used it to trade with neighboring islands. Following a hurricane and a renewed outbreak of disease, the colony collapsed, with the English departing for the nearby French colony on Sainte-Croix, the Danes fleeing to Saint Christopher, the Dutch assisting their countrymen on Ter Tholen in stealing everything of value the remaining Danish guns and ammunition.
The Danes formed a Board of Trade in 1668 and secured a commercial treaty with Britain, providing for the unmolested settlement of uninhabited islands, in July 1670. The Danish West India Company was organized in December and formally chartered by King Christian V the next year on March 11, 1671. Jørgen Iversen Dyppel, a successful trader on Saint Christopher, was made governor and the king provided convicts from his jails and two vessels for the establishment of the colony, the yacht Den forgyldte Krone and the frigate Færøe. Den forgyldte Krone was ordered to run ahead and wait but ended up returning to Denmark after the Færøe under Capt. Zacharias Hansen Bang was delayed for repairs in Bergen; the Færøe completed her mission alone, establishing a settlement on St. Thomas on May 25, 1672. From an original contingent of 190 – 12 officials, 116 company "employees", 62 felons and former prostitutes – only 104 remained, 9 having escaped and 77 having died in transit. Another 75 died within the first year.
In 1675, Iversen placed two men there. Further instructions in 1688 to establish a settlement on St. John seem not to have been acted on until Governor Bredal made an official establishment on March 25, 1718; the islands became a base for pirates attacking ships in the vicinity and for the Brandenburg African Company. Governor Lorentz raised enormous taxes upon them and seized warehouses and cargoes of tobacco and slaves in 1689 only to have his actions repudiated by the authorities in Copenhagen. Possession of the island was subsequently disputed with the Scottish in 1698 and lost to the Spanish in 1811. St. Croix was purchased from the French West Indies Company in 1733. In 1754, the islands were sold to the Danish king, Frederick V of Denmark, becoming royal Danish colonies; the first British invasion and occupation of the Danish West Indies occurred during the French Revolutionary Wars when at the end of March 1801 a British fleet a
Antigua and Barbuda
Antigua and Barbuda is a country in the West Indies in the Americas, lying between the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean. It consists of two major islands and Barbuda, a number of smaller islands; the permanent population numbers about 81,800 and the capital and largest port and city is St. John's on Antigua. Lying near each other and Barbuda are in the middle of the Leeward Islands, part of the Lesser Antilles at 17°N of the equator; the island of Antigua was explored by Christopher Columbus in 1493 and named for the Church of Santa María La Antigua. Antigua was colonized by Britain in 1632. Antigua and Barbuda joined the West Indies Federation in 1958. With the breakup of the federation, it became one of the West Indies Associated States in 1967. Following by self-governing on its internal affairs, independence was granted from United Kingdom on 1 November 1981. Antigua and Barbuda remains a member of the Commonwealth and Elizabeth II is the country's queen and head of state. Antigua is Spanish for "ancient" and barbuda is Spanish for "bearded".
The island of Antigua was called Wadadli by Arawaks and is locally known by that name today. Christopher Columbus, while sailing by in 1493 may have named it Santa Maria la Antigua, after an icon in the Spanish Seville Cathedral. Antigua was first settled by archaic age hunter-gatherer Amerindians called the Ciboney. Carbon dating has established the earliest settlements started around 3100 BC, they were succeeded by the ceramic age pre-Columbian Arawak-speaking Saladoid people who migrated from the lower Orinoco River. The Arawaks introduced agriculture, among other crops, the famous Antigua black pineapple, sweet potatoes, guava and cotton; the indigenous West Indians made excellent seagoing vessels which they used to sail around on the Atlantic and the Caribbean. As a result and Arawaks were able to colonize much of South America and the Caribbean Islands, their descendants still live there, notably in Brazil and Colombia. Most Arawaks left Antigua around 1100 AD. According to the Catholic Encyclopedia, the Caribs' superior weapons and seafaring prowess allowed them to defeat most of the West Indian Arawak nations, enslaving some and cannibalising others.
The Catholic Encyclopedia makes it clear that the European invaders had difficulty differentiating between the various groups of the native peoples they encountered. As a result, the number and types of ethnic/tribal groups in existence at that time may have been much more varied and numerous than just the two mentioned in this article. European and African diseases and slavery killed most of the Caribbean's native population. Smallpox was the greatest killer; some historians believe that the psychological stress of slavery may have played a part in the massive number of deaths amongst enslaved natives. Others believe the abundant but starchy, low-protein diet may have contributed to their severe malnutrition as they were used to a diet fortified with protein from the sea; the Spaniards did not colonise Antigua. The English settled on Antigua in 1632. Slavery, established to run sugar plantations around 1684, was abolished in 1834; the British ruled from 1632 to 1981, with a brief French interlude in 1666.
The islands became an independent state within the Commonwealth of Nations on 1 November 1981, with Elizabeth II as the first Queen of Antigua and Barbuda. Vere Cornwall Bird Sr became the first Prime Minister. Most of Barbuda was devastated in early September 2017 by Hurricane Irma, which brought winds with speeds reaching 295 km/h; the storm damaged or destroyed 95% of the island's buildings and infrastructure, leaving Barbuda "barely habitable" according to Prime Minister Gaston Browne. Nearly everyone on the island was evacuated to Antigua. Antigua and Barbuda both are low-lying islands whose terrain has been influenced more by limestone formations than volcanic activity; the highest point on Antigua is the remnant of a volcanic crater rising 402 metres. The shorelines of both islands are indented with beaches and natural harbours; the islands are rimmed by shoals. There are few. Both islands lack adequate amounts of fresh groundwater. Rainfall averages 990 mm per year, with the amount varying from season to season.
In general the wettest period is between November. The islands experience low humidity and recurrent droughts. Temperatures average 27 °C, with a range from 23 °C to 29 °C in the winter to from 25 °C to 30 °C in the summer and autumn; the coolest period is between February. Hurricanes strike on an average of once a year, including the powerful Category 5 Hurricane Irma, on 6 September 2017, which damaged 95% of the structures on Barbuda; some 1,800 people were evacuated to Antigua. An estimate published by Time indicated that over $100 million would be required to rebuild homes and infrastructure. Philmore Mullin, Director of Barbuda's National Office of Disaster Services, said that "all critical infrastructure and utilities are non-existent –
Head of state
A head of state is the public persona who represents the national unity and legitimacy of a sovereign state. Depending on the country's form of government and separation of powers, the head of state may be a ceremonial figurehead or concurrently the head of government. In a parliamentary system the head of state is the de jure leader of the nation, there is a separate de facto leader with the title of prime minister. In contrast, a semi-presidential system has both heads of state and government as the leaders de facto of the nation. In countries with parliamentary systems, the head of state is a ceremonial figurehead who does not guide day-to-day government activities or is not empowered to exercise any kind of political authority. In countries where the head of state is the head of government, the head of state serves as both a public figurehead and the highest-ranking political leader who oversees the executive branch. Former French president Charles de Gaulle, while developing the current Constitution of France, said that the head of state should embody l'esprit de la nation.
Some academic writers discuss states and governments in terms of "models". An independent nation state has a head of state, determines the extent of its head's executive powers of government or formal representational functions. In protocolary terms, the head of a sovereign, independent state is identified as the person who, according to that state's constitution, is the reigning monarch, in the case of a monarchy, or the president, in the case of a republic. Among the different state constitutions that establish different political systems, four major types of heads of state can be distinguished: The parliamentary system, with three subset models; the non-executive model, in which the head of state has either none or limited executive powers, has a ceremonial and symbolic role. The Parliamentary-Presidential model, or South African Method, where Parliament chooses the President, who acts as both Head of State and Head of Government; some argue this is unfair, becouse citizens dont get a direct say in their executive leadership.
However, this method makes it impossible for a dictator to come to power. The semi-presidential system, in which the head of state shares key executive powers with a head of government or cabinet. In a federal constituent or a dependent territory, the same role is fulfilled by the holder of an office corresponding to that of a head of state. For example, in each Canadian province the role is fulfilled by the Lieutenant Governor, whereas in most British Overseas Territories the powers and duties are performed by the Governor; the same applies to Indian states, etc.. Hong Kong's constitutional document, the Basic Law, for example, specifies the Chief Executive as the head of the special administrative region, in addition to their role as the head of government; these non-sovereign-state heads have limited or no role in diplomatic affairs, depending on the status and the norms and practices of the territories concerned. In parliamentary systems the head of state may be the nominal chief executive officer, heading the executive branch of the state, possessing limited executive power.
In reality, following a process of constitutional evolution, powers are only exercised by direction of a cabinet, presided over by a head of government, answerable to the legislature. This accountability and legitimacy requires that someone be chosen who has a majority support in the legislature, it gives the legislature the right to vote down the head of government and their cabinet, forcing it either to resign or seek a parliamentary dissolution. The executive branch is thus said to be responsible to the legislature, with the head of government and cabinet in turn accepting constitutional responsibility for offering constitutional advice to the head of state. In parliamentary constitutional monarchies, the legitimacy of the unelected head of state derives from the tacit approval of the people via the elected representatives. Accordingly, at the time of the Glorious Revolution, the English parliament acted of its own authority to name a new king and queen. In monarchies with a written constitution, the position of monarch is a creature of the constitution and could quite properly be abolished through a democratic procedure of constitutional amendment, although there are significant procedural hurdles imposed on such a procedure.
In republics with a parliamentary system the head of state is titled president and the principal functions of such presidents are ceremonial and symbolic, as opposed to the presidents in a presidential or semi-presidential system. In reality, numerous variants exist to the position of a head of state within a parliamentary system; the older the cons
Mauritius the Republic of Mauritius, is an island nation in the Indian Ocean. The main Island of Mauritius is located about 2,000 kilometres off the southeast coast of the African continent; the Republic of Mauritius includes the islands of Rodrigues, Agalega and St. Brandon; the capital and largest city Port Louis is located on the main island of Mauritius. In 1598, the Dutch took possession of Mauritius, they abandoned Mauritius in 1710 and the French took control of the island in 1715, renaming it Isle de France. France ceded Mauritius including all its dependencies to the United Kingdom through the Treaty of Paris, signed on 30 May 1814 and in which Réunion was returned to France; the British colony of Mauritius consisted of the main island of Mauritius along with Rodrigues, Agalega, St Brandon and the Chagos Archipelago, while the Seychelles became a separate colony in 1906. The sovereignty of Tromelin is disputed between Mauritius and France as some of the islands such as St. Brandon, Chagos and Tromelin were not mentioned in the Treaty of Paris.
In 1965, three years prior to the independence of Mauritius, the UK split the Chagos Archipelago from Mauritian territory, the islands of Aldabra and Desroches from the Seychelles, to form the British Indian Ocean Territory. The UK forcibly expelled the archipelago's local population and leased its largest island, Diego Garcia, to the United States; the UK has restricted access to the Chagos Archipelago. The sovereignty of the Chagos is disputed between Mauritius and the UK. In February 2019, in an advisory opinion given by the International Court of Justice on this dispute, the ICJ ordered the UK to hand back the Chagos Islands to Mauritius as as possible; the people of Mauritius are multiethnic and multilingual. The island's government is modelled on the Westminster parliamentary system, Mauritius is ranked for democracy and for economic and political freedom; the Human Development Index of Mauritius is one of the highest in Africa. Mauritius is ranked as the most competitive and one of the most developed economies in the African region.
The main pillars of the Mauritian economy are manufacturing, financial services and information and communications technology. Mauritius is a welfare state. Along with the other Mascarene Islands, Mauritius is known for its varied flora and fauna, with many species endemic to the island; the island was the only known home of the dodo, along with several other avian species, was made extinct by human activities shortly after the island's settlement. The first historical evidence of the existence of an island now known as Mauritius is on a map produced by the Italian cartographer Alberto Cantino in 1502. From this, it appears that Mauritius was first named Dina Arobi around 975 by Arab sailors, the first people to visit the island. In 1507, Portuguese sailors visited the uninhabited island; the island appears with a Portuguese name Cirne on early Portuguese maps from the name of a ship in the 1507 expedition. Another Portuguese sailor, Dom Pedro Mascarenhas, gave the name Mascarenes to the Archipelago.
In 1598, a Dutch squadron under Admiral Wybrand van Warwyck landed at Grand Port and named the island Mauritius, in honour of Prince Maurice van Nassau, stadholder of the Dutch Republic. The island became a French colony and was renamed Isle de France. On 3 December 1810, the French surrendered the island to Great Britain during the Napoleonic Wars. Under British rule, the island's name reverted to Mauritius. Mauritius is commonly known as Maurice and Île Maurice in French, Moris in Mauritian Creole; the island of Mauritius was uninhabited before its first recorded visit during the Middle Ages by Arab sailors, who named it Dina Arobi. In 1507, Portuguese sailors came to the uninhabited island and established a visiting base. Diogo Fernandes Pereira, a Portuguese navigator, was the first European known to land in Mauritius, he named the island "Ilha do Cirne". The Portuguese did not stay. In 1598 a Dutch squadron under Admiral Wybrand van Warwyck landed at Grand Port and named the island "Mauritius" after Prince Maurice of Nassau of the Dutch Republic.
The Dutch inhabited the island in 1638, from which they exploited ebony trees and introduced sugar cane, domestic animals and deer. It was from here; the first Dutch settlement lasted twenty years. Several attempts were subsequently made, but the settlements never developed enough to produce dividends, causing the Dutch to abandon Mauritius in 1710. France, which controlled neighbouring Île Bourbon, took control of Mauritius in 1715 and renamed it Isle de France. In 1723, the Code Noir was established to categorise one group of human beings as "goods", in order for the owner of these goods to be able to obtain insurance money and compensation in case of loss of his "goods"; the 1735 arrival of French governor Bertrand-François Mahé de La Bourdonnais coincided with development of a prosperous economy based on sugar production. Mahé de La Bourdonnais established Port Louis as a shipbuilding centre. Under his governorship, numerous buildings were erected, a number of which are sti
The franc is the name of several currency units. The French franc was the currency of France until the euro was adopted in 1999; the Swiss franc is a major world currency today due to the prominence of Swiss financial institutions. The name is said to derive from the Latin inscription francorum rex used on early French coins and until the 18th century, or from the French franc, meaning "frank"; the countries that use francs include Switzerland and most of Francophone Africa. Before the introduction of the euro, francs were used in France and Luxembourg, while Andorra and Monaco accepted the French franc as legal tender; the franc was used within the French Empire's colonies, including Algeria and Cambodia. The franc is sometimes Hispanicised as the franco, for instance in Luccan franco. One franc is divided into 100 centimes; the French franc symbol was an F with a line through it or, more only an F. For practical reasons, the banks and the financial markets used the abbreviation FF for the French franc in order to distinguish it from the Belgian franc, the Luxembourgish franc, et cetera.
In the Luxembourgish language, the word for franc is plural form Frangen. The franc was a French gold coin of 3.87 g minted in 1360 on the occasion of the release of King John II, held by the English since his capture at the Battle of Poitiers four years earlier. It was equivalent to one livre tournois; the French franc was the name of a gold coin issued in France from 1360 until 1380 a silver coin issued between 1575 and 1641. The franc became the national currency from 1795 until 1999. Though abolished as a legal coin by Louis XIII in 1641 in favor of the gold louis and silver écu, the term franc continued to be used in common parlance for the livre tournois; the franc was minted for many of the former French colonies, such as Morocco, French West Africa, others. Today, after independence, many of these countries continue to use the franc as their standard denomination; the value of the French franc was locked to the euro at 1 euro = 6.55957 FRF on 31 December 1998, after the introduction of the euro notes and coins, ceased to be legal tender after 28 February 2002, although they were still exchangeable at banks until 19 February 2012.
Fourteen African countries use the franc CFA worth 1.7 French francs and from 1948, 2 francs but after January 1994 worth only 0.01 French franc. Therefore, from January 1999, 1 CFA franc is equivalent to €0.00152449. A separate circulates in France's Pacific territories, worth €0.0084. In 1981, The Comoros established an arrangement with the French government similar to that of the CFA franc. 50 Comorian francs were worth 1 French franc. In January 1994, the rate was changed to 75 Comorian francs to the French franc. Since 1999, the currency has been pegged to the euro; the conquest of most of western Europe by Revolutionary and Napoleonic France led to the franc's wide circulation. Following independence from the Kingdom of the Netherlands, the new Kingdom of Belgium in 1832 adopted its own Belgian franc, equivalent to the French one, followed by Luxembourg adopting the Luxembourgish franc in 1848 and Switzerland in 1850. Newly unified Italy adopted the lira on a similar basis in 1862. In 1865, Belgium and Italy created the Latin Monetary Union: each would possess a national currency unit worth 4.5 g of silver or 0.290322 g of gold, all exchangeable at a rate of 1:1.
In the 1870s the gold value was made the fixed standard, a situation, to continue until 1914. In 1926 Belgium as well as France experienced depreciation and an abrupt collapse of confidence, leading to the introduction of a new gold currency for international transactions, the belga of 5 francs, the country's withdrawal from the monetary union, which ceased to exist at the end of the year; the 1921 monetary union of Belgium and Luxembourg survived, forming the basis for full economic union in 1932. Like the French franc, the Belgo-Luxemburgish franc ceased to exist on 1 January 1999, when it became fixed at 1 EUR = 40.3399 BEF/LUF, thus a franc was worth €0.024789. Old franc coins and notes lost their legal tender status on 28 February 2002. 1 Luxembourgish franc was equal to 1 Belgian franc. Belgian francs were legal tender inside Luxembourg, Luxembourgish francs were legal tender in the whole of Belgium; the equivalent name of the Belgian franc in Dutch, Belgium's other official language, was Belgische Frank.
As mentioned before, in Luxembourg the franc was called Frang. The Swiss franc, which appreciated against the new European currency from April to September 2000, remains one of the world's strongest currencies, worth today around five-sixths of a euro; the Swiss franc is used in Liechtenstein. Liechtenstein retains the ability to mint its own currency, the Liechtenstein franc, which it does from time to time for commemorative or emergency purposes; the name of the c