Lidzbark Warmiński is a town in the Warmian-Masurian Voivodeship in Poland. It is the capital of Lidzbark County. Lidzbark Warmiński was once the capital of Warmia and its largest city; the city was known as the Pearl of Warmia. For a long period of time it was under the control of the Bishops of Warmia and it was a major economic center, only resigning its importance to the nearby city of Braniewo; the Warmian Bishop's Castle is considered to be a great artistic and historical value in the world and has been recognised as a historical monument by the Polish government. The town was an Old Prussian settlement known as Lecbarg until being conquered in 1240 by the Teutonic Knights, who named it Heilsberg. In 1306 it became the seat for the Bishopric of Warmia, remained the Prince-Bishop's seat for 500 years. In 1309 the settlement received town privileges. After the Second Peace of Thorn weakened the Teutonic Order and ended its claim to the area, the town was integrated into the Polish province of Royal Prussia.
Nicolaus Copernicus lived at the castle for several years, it is believed he wrote part of his De revolutionibus orbium coelestium there. In the winter of 1703-04 the town was the residence of King Charles XII of Sweden during the Great Northern War; the town was annexed with the rest of the region by the Kingdom of Prussia in the First Partition of Poland in 1772. In 1807 a battle took place near the town between the French under Murat and Soult and the Russians and Prussians under Bennigsen. From 1933-45 it was the site of the large German government radio station Transmitter Heilsberg; the town was damaged after its conquest by the Soviet Red Army during World War II in 1945. As part of territorial changes promulgated at the Potsdam Conference, the area became part of Poland and its ethnic German population was expelled to the west; the town, as Lidzbark Warmiński, was resettled by Poles, many of them from the parts of eastern Poland annexed by the Soviet Union. Lidzbark Warmiński is twinned with: Oud-Beijerland, Netherlands Milanówek, Poland Sovetsk, Kaliningrad Oblast, Russia Werlte, Germany Mauritius Ferber member of the patrician Ferber family and Roman Catholic Prince-Bishop of Warmia Nicolaus Copernicus, famous astronomer, mathematician and canon Stanislaus Hosius, Polish Roman Catholic cardinal, Prince-Bishop of Warmia John Albert Vasa, Polish cardinal, Prince-Bishop of Warmia and Kraków, Teodor Andrzej Potocki Prince-Bishop of Warmia, Primate of Poland, interrex in 1733 Ignacy Krasicki, Prince-Bishop of Warmia, Primate of Poland, Polish poet Ernst Burchard and scientist Dorothee Raetsch, German sculptor and graphic artist Zbigniew Mikołejko, Polish philosopher and historian of religion, essayist Media related to Lidzbark Warmiński at Wikimedia Commons http://www.lidzbark.com/ https://web.archive.org/web/20040223142519/http://www.lidzbarkwarminski.pl/ https://web.archive.org/web/20050110174133/http://www.warmia-mazury.pl/powiaty/lidzbark.html Map of Warmia Catholic Diocese in 1755 http://www.heilsberg.org/
In monotheistic thought, God is conceived of as the supreme being, creator deity, principal object of faith. The conceptions of God, as described by theologians include the attributes of omniscience, omnipresence, as having an eternal and necessary existence. Depending on one's kind of theism, these attributes are used either in way of analogy, or in a literal sense as distinct properties. God is most held to be incorporeal. Incorporeality and corporeality of God are related to conceptions of transcendence and immanence of God, with positions of synthesis such as the "immanent transcendence". Psychoanalyst Carl Jung equated religious ideas of God with transcendental aspects of consciousness in his interpretation; some religions describe God without reference to gender, while others or their translations use sex-specific terminology. Judaism attributes only a grammatical gender to God, using terms such as "Him" or "Father" for convenience. God has been conceived as either impersonal. In theism, God is the creator and sustainer of the universe, while in deism, God is the creator, but not the sustainer, of the universe.
In pantheism, God is the universe itself. In atheism, there is an absence of belief in God. In agnosticism, the existence of God is deemed unknowable. God has been conceived as the source of all moral obligation, the "greatest conceivable existent". Many notable philosophers have developed arguments against the existence of God. Monotheists refer to their gods using names prescribed by their respective religions, with some of these names referring to certain cultural ideas about their god's identity and attributes. In the ancient Egyptian era of Atenism the earliest recorded monotheistic religion, this deity was called Aten, premised on being the one "true" Supreme Being and creator of the universe. In the Hebrew Bible and Judaism, Adonai, YHWH and other names are used as the names of God. Yahweh and Jehovah, possible vocalizations of YHWH, are used in Christianity. In the Christian doctrine of the Trinity, coexisting in three "persons", is called the Father, the Son, the Holy Spirit. In Islam, the name Allah is used, while Muslims have a multitude of titular names for God.
In Hinduism, Brahman is considered a monistic concept of God. In Chinese religion, Shangdi is conceived as the progenitor of the universe, intrinsic to it and bringing order to it. Other religions have names for the concept, for instance, Baha in the Bahá'í Faith, Waheguru in Sikhism, Sang Hyang Widhi Wasa in Balinese Hinduism, Ahura Mazda in Zoroastrianism; the many different conceptions of God, competing claims as to God's characteristics and actions, have led to the development of ideas of omnitheism, pandeism, or a perennial philosophy, which postulates that there is one underlying theological truth, of which all religions express a partial understanding, as to which "the devout in the various great world religions are in fact worshipping that one God, but through different, overlapping concepts". The earliest written form of the Germanic word God comes from the 6th-century Christian Codex Argenteus; the English word itself is derived from the Proto-Germanic * ǥuđan. The reconstructed Proto-Indo-European form * ǵhu-tó-m was based on the root * ǵhau-, which meant either "to call" or "to invoke".
The Germanic words for God were neuter—applying to both genders—but during the process of the Christianization of the Germanic peoples from their indigenous Germanic paganism, the words became a masculine syntactic form. In the English language, capitalization is used for names by which a god is known, including'God'; the capitalized form of god is not used for multiple gods or when used to refer to the generic idea of a deity. The English word God and its counterparts in other languages are used for any and all conceptions and, in spite of significant differences between religions, the term remains an English translation common to all; the same holds for Hebrew El, but in Judaism, God is given a proper name, the tetragrammaton YHWH, in origin the name of an Edomite or Midianite deity, Yahweh. In many translations of the Bible, when the word LORD is in all capitals, it signifies that the word represents the tetragrammaton. Allāh is the Arabic term with no plural used by Muslims and Arabic speaking Christians and Jews meaning "The God", while "ʾilāh" is the term used for a deity or a god in general.
God may be given a proper name in monotheistic currents of Hinduism which emphasize the personal nature of God, with early references to his name as Krishna-Vasudeva in Bhagavata or Vishnu and Hari. Ahura Mazda is the name for God used in Zoroastrianism. "Mazda", or rather the Avestan stem-form Mazdā-, nominative Mazdå, reflects Proto-Iranian *Mazdāh. It is taken to be the proper name of the spirit, like its Sanskrit cognate medhā, means "intelligence" or "wisdom". Both the Avestan and Sanskrit words reflect Proto-Indo-Iranian *mazdhā-, from Proto-Indo-European mn̩sdʰeh1 meaning "placing one's mind", hence "wise". Waheguru is a term most used in Sikhism to refer to God, it means "Wonderful Teacher" in the Punjabi language. Vāhi means "wonderful" and guru is a term denoting "teacher". Waheguru is described by some as an experience of ecstasy, beyond all descriptions; the most common usage of the word "Waheguru" is in the greeting Sikhs use with each other: Baha, the "greates
Provence is a geographical region and historical province of southeastern France, which extends from the left bank of the lower Rhône River to the west to the Italian border to the east, is bordered by the Mediterranean Sea to the south. It corresponds with the modern administrative région of Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, includes the départements of Var, Bouches-du-Rhône, Alpes-de-Haute-Provence and parts of Alpes-Maritimes and Vaucluse; the largest city of the region is Marseille. The Romans made the region the first Roman province beyond the Alps and called it Provincia Romana, which evolved into the present name; until 1481 it was ruled by the Counts of Provence from their capital in Aix-en-Provence became a province of the Kings of France. While it has been part of France for more than five hundred years, it still retains a distinct cultural and linguistic identity in the interior of the region; the coast of Provence has some of the earliest known sites of human habitation in Europe. Primitive stone tools dating back 1 to 1.05 million years BC have been found in the Grotte du Vallonnet near Roquebrune-Cap-Martin, between Monaco and Menton.
More sophisticated tools, worked on both sides of the stone and dating to 600,000 BC, were found in the Cave of Escale at Saint Estėve-Janson, tools from 400,000 BC and some of the first fireplaces in Europe were found at Terra Amata in Nice. Tools dating to the Middle Paleolithic and Upper Paleolithic were discovered in the Observatory Cave, in the Jardin Exotique of Monaco; the Paleolithic period in Provence saw great changes in the climate. Two ice ages came and went, the sea level changed dramatically. At the beginning of the Paleolithic, the sea level in western Provence was 150 meters higher than today. By the end of the Paleolithic, it had dropped to 100 to 150 metres below the sea level today; the cave dwellings of the early inhabitants of Provence were flooded by the rising sea or left far from the sea and swept away by erosion. The changes in the sea level led to one of the most remarkable discoveries of signs of early man in Provence. In 1985, a diver named Henri Cosquer discovered the mouth of a submarine cave 37 metres below the surface of the Calanque de Morgiou near Marseille.
The entrance led to a cave above sea level. Inside, the walls of the Cosquer Cave are decorated with drawings of bison, auks and outlines of human hands, dating to between 27,000 and 19,000 BC; the end of the Paleolithic and beginning of the Neolithic period saw the sea settle at its present level, a warming of the climate and the retreat of the forests. The disappearance of the forests and the deer and other hunted game meant that the inhabitants of Provence had to survive on rabbits and wild sheep. In about 6000 BC, the Castelnovian people, living around Châteauneuf-les-Martigues, were among the first people in Europe to domesticate wild sheep, to cease moving from place to place. Once they settled in one place they were able to develop new industries. Inspired by pottery from the eastern Mediterranean, in about 6000 BC they created the first pottery made in France. Around 6000 BC, a wave of new settlers from the east, the Chasséens, arrived in Provence, they were farmers and warriors, displaced the earlier pastoral people from their lands.
They were followed about 2500 BC by another wave of people farmers, known as the Courronniens, who arrived by sea and settled along the coast of what is now the Bouches-du-Rhône. Traces of these early civilisations can be found in many parts of Provence. A Neolithic site dating to about 6,000 BC was discovered in Marseille near the Saint-Charles railway station, and a dolmen from the Bronze Age can be found near Draguignan. Between the 10th and 4th century BC, the Ligures were found in Provence from Massilia as far as modern Liguria, they were of uncertain origin. Strabo distinctly states they were not of a different race from the Gauls, they did not have their own alphabet, but their language remains in place names in Provence ending in the suffixes -asc, -osc. -inc, -ates, -auni. The ancient geographer Posidonios wrote of them: "Their country is dry; the soil is so rocky. The men compensate for the lack of wheat by hunting... They climb the mountains like goats." They were warlike. Traces of the Ligures remain today in the dolmens and other megaliths found in eastern Provence, in the primitive stone shelters called'Bories' found in the Luberon and Comtat, in the rock carvings in the Valley of Marvels near Mont Bégo in the Alpes-Maritimes, at an altitude of 2,000 meters.
Between the 8th and 5th centuries BC, tribes of Celtic peoples coming from Central Europe began moving into Provence. They had weapons made of iron, which allowed them to defeat the local tribes, who were still armed with bronze weapons. One tribe, called the Segobriga, settled near modern-day Marseille; the Caturiges and Cavares settled to the west of the Durance river. Celts and Ligurians spread throughout the area and the Celto-Ligures shared the territory of Provence, each tribe in its own alpine valley or settlement along a river, each with its own king and dynasty, they built hilltop forts and settlements given the Latin name oppida. Today the traces 165 oppida are found in the Var, as many as 285 in the Alp
Clergy are some of the main and important formal leaders within certain religions. The roles and functions of clergy vary in different religious traditions but these involve presiding over specific rituals and teaching their religion's doctrines and practices; some of the terms used for individual clergy are clergyman and churchman. Less common terms are churchwoman and cleric. In Christianity the specific names and roles of clergy vary by denomination and there is a wide range of formal and informal clergy positions, including deacons, priests, preachers, pastors and the Pope. In Islam, a religious leader is known formally or informally as an imam, mufti, mullah or ayatollah. In Jewish tradition, a religious leader is a rabbi or hazzan; the word "Cleric" comes from the ecclesiastical Latin Clericus, for those belonging to the priestly class. In turn, the source of the Latin word is from the Ecclesiastical Greek Clericus, meaning appertaining to an inheritance, in reference to the fact that the Levitical priests of the Old Testament had no inheritance except the Lord.
"Clergy" is from two Old French words, clergié and clergie, which refer to those with learning and derive from Medieval Latin clericatus, from Late Latin clericus. "Clerk", which used to mean one ordained to the ministry derives from clericus. In the Middle Ages and writing were exclusively the domain of the priestly class, this is the reason for the close relationship of these words. Within Christianity in Eastern Christianity and in Western Roman Catholicism, the term cleric refers to any individual, ordained, including deacons and bishops. In Latin Roman Catholicism, the tonsure was a prerequisite for receiving any of the minor orders or major orders before the tonsure, minor orders, the subdiaconate were abolished following the Second Vatican Council. Now, the clerical state is tied to reception of the diaconate. Minor Orders are still given in the Eastern Catholic Churches, those who receive those orders are'minor clerics.'The use of the word "Cleric" is appropriate for Eastern Orthodox minor clergy who are tonsured in order not to trivialize orders such as those of Reader in the Eastern Church, or for those who are tonsured yet have no minor or major orders.
It is in this sense that the word entered the Arabic language, most in Lebanon from the French, as kleriki meaning "seminarian." This is all in keeping with Eastern Orthodox concepts of clergy, which still include those who have not yet received, or do not plan to receive, the diaconate. A priesthood is a body of priests, shamans, or oracles who have special religious authority or function; the term priest is derived from the Greek presbyter, but is used in the sense of sacerdos in particular, i.e. for clergy performing ritual within the sphere of the sacred or numinous communicating with the gods on behalf of the community. Buddhist clergy are collectively referred to as the Sangha, consist of various orders of male and female monks; this diversity of monastic orders and styles was one community founded by Gautama Buddha during the 5th century BC living under a common set of rules. According to scriptural records, these celibate monks and nuns in the time of the Buddha lived an austere life of meditation, living as wandering beggars for nine months out of the year and remaining in retreat during the rainy season.
However, as Buddhism spread geographically over time - encountering different cultures, responding to new social and physical environments - this single form of Buddhist monasticism diversified. The interaction between Buddhism and Tibetan Bon led to a uniquely Tibetan Buddhism, within which various sects, based upon certain teacher-student lineages arose; the interaction between Indian Buddhist monks and Chinese Confucian and Taoist monks from c200-c900AD produced the distinctive Ch'an Buddhism. Ch'an, like the Tibetan style, further diversified into various sects based upon the transmission style of certain teachers, as well as in response to particular political developments such as the An Lushan Rebellion and the Buddhist persecutions of Emperor Wuzong. In these ways, manual labour was introduced to a practice where monks survived on alms; this adaptation of form and roles of Buddhist monastic practice continued after the transmission to Japan. For example, monks took on administrative functions for the Emperor in particular secular communities, thereby creating Buddhist'priests'.
Again, in response to various historic attempts to suppress Buddhism, the practice of celibacy was relaxed and Japanese monks allowed to marry. This form was transmitted to Korea, during Japanese occupation, where celibate and non-celibate monks today exist in the same sects.. As these varied styles of Buddhist monasticism are transmitted to Western cultures, still more new forms are being created. In general, the Mahayana schools of Buddhism tend to be mo
Le Mans is a city in France, on the Sarthe River. Traditionally the capital of the province of Maine, it is now the capital of the Sarthe department and the seat of the Roman Catholic diocese of Le Mans. Le Mans is a part of the Pays de la Loire region, its inhabitants are called Mancelles. Since 1923, the city has hosted the internationally famous 24 Hours of Le Mans endurance sports car race. First mentioned by Claudius Ptolemy, the Roman city Vindinium was the capital of the Aulerci, a sub tribe of the Aedui. Le Mans is known as Civitas Cenomanorum, or Cenomanus, their city, seized by the Romans in 47 BC, was within the ancient Roman province of Gallia Lugdunensis. A 3rd-century amphitheatre is still visible; the thermae were demolished during the crisis of the third century when workers were mobilized to build the city's defensive walls. The ancient wall around Le Mans is one of the most complete circuits of Gallo-Roman city walls to survive; as the use of the French language replaced late Vulgar Latin in the area, with dissimilation, became known as Celmans.
Cel- was taken to be a form of the French word for "this" and "that", was replaced by le, which means "the". Gregory of Tours mentions a Frankish sub-king Rigomer, killed by King Clovis I in his campaign to unite the Frankish territories; as the principal city of Maine, Le Mans was the stage for struggles in the eleventh century between the counts of Anjou and the dukes of Normandy. When the Normans had control of Maine, William the Conqueror invaded England and established an occupation. In 1069 the citizens of Maine revolted and expelled the Normans, resulting in Hugh V being proclaimed count of Maine. Geoffrey V of Anjou married Matilda of England in the cathedral, their son Henry II Plantagenet, king of England, was born here. In 1154, during the reign of his uncle King Stephen, Henry landed in England with an army, intent on challenging Stephen for the throne; some of the members of that feudal force were known by the surname'del Mans' In medieval records pertaining to the history of Gloucester is a reference to one such man, Walter del Mans, beside his name'Cenomanus' was added by the medieval scribe, so that there is no doubt as to Walter's origin.
In the English censuses down to the twentieth century the surname Mans was confined to the counties of Gloucestershire and Herefordshire and their borderlands, reflecting the original settlement patterns in the Welsh Marches of the original followers of Henry's from Le Mans in 1154. A John Mans/Manns was escheator of Hereford 1399-1400. One family from Mans held the manor of Worcestershire. Intercourse between England and Le Mans continued throughout the Angevin period. Soon after Le Mans was liberated by the U. S. 79th and 90th Infantry Divisions on 8 August 1944, engineers of the Ninth Air Force IX Engineering Command began construction of a combat Advanced Landing Ground outside of the town. The airfield was declared operational on 3 September and designated as "A-35", it was used by several American fighter and transport units until late November of that year in additional offensives across France. Le Mans has a well-preserved old town and the Cathédrale St-Julien, dedicated to St Julian of Le Mans, honoured as the city's first bishop.
Remnants of a Roman wall are visible in the old town and Roman baths are located by the river. These walls are highlighted every summer evening in a light show. Arboretum de la Grand Prée Part of the former Cistercian abbey de l'Epau, founded by Queen Berengaria and maintained in extensive grounds by the Département de la Sarthe. Jardin des Plantes du Mans Musée de la reine Bérengère, a museum of Le Mans history located in a gothic manor house. Musée de Tessé, the fine arts museum of the city, displaying painting and archaeological collections as well as decorative arts. Le Mans has an oceanic climate influenced by the mild Atlantic air travelling inland. Summers are warm and hot, whereas winters are mild and cloudy. Precipitation is uniform and moderate year round. At the 1999 French census, there were 293,159 inhabitants in the metropolitan area of Le Mans, with 146,105 of these living in the city proper; the Gare du Mans is the main railway station of Le Mans. It takes 1 hour to reach Paris from Le Mans by TGV high speed train.
There are TGV connections to Lille, Nantes and Brest. Gare du Mans is a hub for regional trains. Le Mans inaugurated a new light rail system on 17 November 2007; the first French Grand Prix took place on a 64-mile circuit based at Le Mans in 1906. Since the 1920s, the city has been best known for its connection with motorsports. There are two official and separate racing tracks at Le Mans; the smaller is the Bugatti Circuit, a short permanent circuit, used for racing throughout the year and has hosted the French motorcycle Grand Prix. The longer and more famous Circuit de la Sarthe is composed of public roads; these are closed to the public. Since 1923, this route
Hungary is a country in Central Europe. Spanning 93,030 square kilometres in the Carpathian Basin, it borders Slovakia to the north, Ukraine to the northeast, Austria to the northwest, Romania to the east, Serbia to the south, Croatia to the southwest, Slovenia to the west. With about 10 million inhabitants, Hungary is a medium-sized member state of the European Union; the official language is Hungarian, the most spoken Uralic language in the world, among the few non-Indo-European languages to be spoken in Europe. Hungary's capital and largest city is Budapest; the territory of modern Hungary was for centuries inhabited by a succession of peoples, including Celts, Germanic tribes, West Slavs and the Avars. The foundations of the Hungarian state were established in the late ninth century CE by the Hungarian grand prince Árpád following the conquest of the Carpathian Basin, his great-grandson Stephen I ascended the throne in 1000, converting his realm to a Christian kingdom. By the 12th century, Hungary became a regional power, reaching its cultural and political height in the 15th century.
Following the Battle of Mohács in 1526, Hungary was occupied by the Ottoman Empire. It came under Habsburg rule at the turn of the 18th century, joined Austria to form the Austro–Hungarian Empire, a major European power; the Austro-Hungarian Empire collapsed after World War I, the subsequent Treaty of Trianon established Hungary's current borders, resulting in the loss of 71% of its territory, 58% of its population, 32% of ethnic Hungarians. Following the tumultuous interwar period, Hungary joined the Axis Powers in World War II, suffering significant damage and casualties. Hungary became a satellite state of the Soviet Union, which contributed to the establishment of a socialist republic spanning four decades; the country gained widespread international attention as a result of its 1956 revolution and the seminal opening of its previously-restricted border with Austria in 1989, which accelerated the collapse of the Eastern Bloc. On 23 October 1989, Hungary became a democratic parliamentary republic.
Hungary is an OECD high-income economy and has the world's 58th largest economy by PPP. It ranks 45th on the Human Development Index, owing in large part to its social security system, universal health care, tuition-free secondary education. Hungary's rich cultural history includes significant contributions to the arts, literature, sports and technology, it is the 13th most popular tourist destination in Europe, attracting 15.8 million international tourists in 2017, owing to attractions such as the largest thermal water cave system in the world, second largest thermal lake, the largest lake in Central Europe and the largest natural grasslands in Europe. Hungary's cultural and academic prominence classify it as a middle power in global affairs. Hungary joined the European Union in 2004 and has been part of the Schengen Area since 2007, it is a member of numerous international organizations, including the United Nations, NATO, WTO, World Bank, the AIIB, the Council of Europe, the Visegrád Group.
The "H" in the name of Hungary is most due to early founded historical associations with the Huns, who had settled Hungary prior to the Avars. The rest of the word comes from the Latinized form of Byzantine Greek Oungroi. According to an explanation,the Greek name was borrowed from Old Bulgarian ągrinŭ, in turn borrowed from Oghur-Turkic Onogur. Onogur was the collective name for the tribes who joined the Bulgar tribal confederacy that ruled the eastern parts of Hungary after the Avars; the Hungarian endonym is Magyarország, composed of ország. The word magyar is taken from the name of one of the seven major semi-nomadic Hungarian tribes, magyeri; the first element magy is from Proto-Ugric *mäńć-'man, person' found in the name of the Mansi people. The second element eri,'man, lineage', survives in Hungarian férj'husband', is cognate with Mari erge'son', Finnish archaic yrkä'young man'; the Roman Empire conquered the territory west of the Danube between 35 and 9 BC. From 9 BC to the end of the 4th century, Pannonia was part of the Roman Empire, located within part of Hungary's territory.
Around AD 41–54, a 500-strong cavalry unit created the settlement of Aquincum and a Roman legion of 6,000 men was stationed here by AD 89. A civil city grew in the neighbourhood of the military settlement and in AD 106 Aquincum became the focal point of the commercial life of this area and the capital city of the province of Pannonia Inferior; this area now corresponds to the Óbuda district of Budapest, with the Roman ruins now forming part of the modern Aquincum museum. Came the Huns, a Central Asian tribe who built a powerful empire. After Hunnish rule, the Germanic Ostrogoths and Gepids, the Avar Khaganate, had a presence in the Carpathian Basin. In the 9th century, East Francia, the First Bulgarian Empire and Great Moravia ruled the territory of the Carpathian Basin; the freshly unified Hungarians led by Árpád, settled in the Carpathian Basin starting in 895. According to linguistic evidence, they originated from an ancient Uralic-speaking population that inhabited the forested area between the Volga River and the Ural Mountains.
As a federation of united tribes, Hungary was established in 895, some 50 years after the division of the Carolingian Empire at the Treaty of Verdun in 843, before the unification of the Anglo-Saxon king
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