Belgium the Kingdom of Belgium, is a country in Western Europe. It is bordered by the Netherlands to the north, Germany to the east, Luxembourg to the southeast, France to the southwest, the North Sea to the northwest, it has a population of more than 11.4 million. The capital and largest city is Brussels; the sovereign state is a federal constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary system. Its institutional organisation is structured on both regional and linguistic grounds, it is divided into three autonomous regions: Flanders in the north, Wallonia in the south, the Brussels-Capital Region. Brussels is the smallest and most densely populated region, as well as the richest region in terms of GDP per capita. Belgium is home to two main linguistic groups or Communities: the Dutch-speaking Flemish Community, which constitutes about 59 percent of the population, the French-speaking Community, which comprises about 40 percent of all Belgians. A small German-speaking Community, numbering around one percent, exists in the East Cantons.
The Brussels-Capital Region is bilingual, although French is the dominant language. Belgium's linguistic diversity and related political conflicts are reflected in its political history and complex system of governance, made up of six different governments. Belgium was part of an area known as the Low Countries, a somewhat larger region than the current Benelux group of states that included parts of northern France and western Germany, its name is derived after the Roman province of Gallia Belgica. From the end of the Middle Ages until the 17th century, the area of Belgium was a prosperous and cosmopolitan centre of commerce and culture. Between the 16th and early 19th centuries, Belgium served as the battleground between many European powers, earning the moniker the "Battlefield of Europe", a reputation strengthened by both world wars; the country emerged in 1830 following the Belgian Revolution. Belgium participated in the Industrial Revolution and, during the course of the 20th century, possessed a number of colonies in Africa.
The second half of the 20th century was marked by rising tensions between the Dutch-speaking and the French-speaking citizens fueled by differences in language and culture and the unequal economic development of Flanders and Wallonia. This continuing antagonism has led to several far-reaching reforms, resulting in a transition from a unitary to a federal arrangement during the period from 1970 to 1993. Despite the reforms, tensions between the groups have remained, if not increased. Unemployment in Wallonia is more than double that of Flanders. Belgium is one of the six founding countries of the European Union and hosts the official seats of the European Commission, the Council of the European Union, the European Council, as well as a seat of the European Parliament in the country's capital, Brussels. Belgium is a founding member of the Eurozone, NATO, OECD, WTO, a part of the trilateral Benelux Union and the Schengen Area. Brussels hosts several of the EU's official seats as well as the headquarters of many major international organizations such as NATO.
Belgium is a developed country, with an advanced high-income economy. It has high standards of living, quality of life, education, is categorized as "very high" in the Human Development Index, it ranks as one of the safest or most peaceful countries in the world. The name "Belgium" is derived from Gallia Belgica, a Roman province in the northernmost part of Gaul that before Roman invasion in 100 BC, was inhabited by the Belgae, a mix of Celtic and Germanic peoples. A gradual immigration by Germanic Frankish tribes during the 5th century brought the area under the rule of the Merovingian kings. A gradual shift of power during the 8th century led the kingdom of the Franks to evolve into the Carolingian Empire; the Treaty of Verdun in 843 divided the region into Middle and West Francia and therefore into a set of more or less independent fiefdoms which, during the Middle Ages, were vassals either of the King of France or of the Holy Roman Emperor. Many of these fiefdoms were united in the Burgundian Netherlands of the 15th centuries.
Emperor Charles V extended the personal union of the Seventeen Provinces in the 1540s, making it far more than a personal union by the Pragmatic Sanction of 1549 and increased his influence over the Prince-Bishopric of Liège. The Eighty Years' War divided the Low Countries into the northern United Provinces and the Southern Netherlands; the latter were ruled successively by the Spanish and the Austrian Habsburgs and comprised most of modern Belgium. This was the theatre of most Franco-Spanish and Franco-Austrian wars during the 17th and 18th centuries. Following the campaigns of 1794 in the French Revolutionary Wars, the Low Countries—including territories that were never nominally under Habsburg rule, such as the Prince-Bishopric of Liège—were annexed by the French First Republic, ending Austrian rule in the region; the reunification of the Low Countries as the United Kingdom of the Netherlands occurred at the dissolution of the First French Empire in 1815, after the defeat of Napo
Compagnie des Montres Longines Francillon S. A. or Longines, is a Swiss luxury watchmaker based in Saint-Imier, Switzerland. Founded by Auguste Agassiz in 1832, the company has been a subsidiary of the Swiss Swatch Group since 1983, its winged hourglass logo, registered in 1889, is the oldest unchanged yet still active registered trademark. Longines was founded in Saint-Imier in 1832 by Auguste Agassiz, a Swiss watchmaker and brother of biologist Louis Agassiz. Auguste had two partners, lawyers Henri Raiguel and Florian Morel, the company's origional name was Raiguel Jeune & Cie. By 1846, Raigeul and Morel had retired from the watch industry, leaving Agassiz as sole company head. Several years Agassiz brought in his bright, enterprising nephew, trained economist Ernest Francillon, into the business. Francillon was the mastermind behind several impressive innovations that would distinguish the company from competitors. One early stroke of genius from Francillon was to produce crown-wound pocket watches rather than the prevalent key-wound alternative.
When Agassiz started suffering from ill health, he passed leadership to Francillon. Under Francillon, the company began segueing out of the établissage system and moved towards more modern production methods. Francillon solidified his firm’s progression to mass production in 1867 by establishing his first factory, its location, an area in southern St. Imier known locally as Les Longines gave rise to the Longines name. To help further his efforts to improve production at Longines, Francillon brought on Jacques David, a talented engineer. In addition, Francillon appointed David as Technical Director and put him in charge of the new factory. By 1867, it was marked the year the Longines factory produced its first in-house watch movement, the 20A; the 20A, built with an anchor escapement, was set via a pendent crown. The innovative movement won an award at the 1867 Universal Exhibition in Paris. Several years the U. S. watchmaking industry was earning fame worldwide for making great strides in industrialized watch manufacturing.
Francillon sent Jacques David to the 1876 World’s Fair in Philadelphia to garner new ideas and strategies from the Americans. Upon returning, David wrote a comprehensive 108-page report on what he’d learned about American watch production; this report is considered one of the most significant documents in watchmaking history. It detailed the inner workings of American watch factories, including the entire production process from raw materials to finished watches. Additionally, David shared the highly-effective internal structure and quality control measures implemented in these factories. In his analysis, David concluded the Swiss watchmaking industry needed to change to keep pace with American competitors. In 1878, Longines developed its first chronograph movement, the 20H, it was a “mono-pusher” chronograph, in which all 3 chronograph functions- start and reset – were controlled via the crown. With the 20H, Longines could produce stopwatches suitable for precise timing in professional events.
This was when Longines began building its reputation in equestrian sports such as horse racing and jumping. By 1880, Longines was known for the precision of its timepieces. To Francillon’s dismay, the brand became a target for counterfeiters looking to pass off cheaply-made watches as genuine Longines products. “Knock-offs” of Longines were not only directly stealing business and revenue from Francillon, but potentially damaging his company’s reputation. So Francillon made the wise decision to trademark the Longines name in 1880, distinctive winged hourglass logo in 1889. By 1886, Longines had established itself as a primary supplier of timing equipment for most New York sporting officials. In 1931, Longines collaborated with an aviator, Charles Lindbergh introduces an aviation watch called, Longines Weems, named after P. V. H. Weems. In 1954, Longines introduced a timekeeping instrument called, Longines Chronocinegines. In 1971, Longines was sold by ASUAG. is one of the companies that merged to become Société Suisse de Microélectronique et d'Horlogerie, it would became, the Swatch Group since 1983.
The company motto/slogan of Longines is "Elegance is an attitude". In December 2018, World Wide Fund for Nature released an official report giving environmental ratings for 15 major watch manufacturers and jewelers in Switzerland. Longines, along with 7 other manufacturers including Omega and Tissot, was given the lowest environmental rating as "Latecomers/Non-transparent", suggesting that the manufacturer has taken few actions addressing the impact of its manufacturing activities on the environment and climate change. There are concerns over the lack of transparency in manufacturing activities and the sourcing of precious raw materials such as gold, a major cause of environmental issues such as pollution, soil degradation and deforestation; the situation is serious in the developing countries which are top producers of gold, including China and South Africa. It is estimated that the watch and jewelry sector uses over 50% of world's annual gold production, but in most cases the watch companies are not able to or are unwilling to demonstrate where their raw materials come from and if the material suppliers use eco-friendly sourcing technologies.
Notable Longines brand ambassadors and timepieces owners include Humphrey Bogart, Harry Connick Jr. Audrey Hepburn, Aishwarya Rai, Kate Winslet and so on. In particular, Albert Einstein owned two timepieces from Longines, one 1943 silver pocket watch and one 1929 gold wristwatch, his Longines' wrist
Glossary of gymnastics terms
This is a general glossary of the terms used in the sport of gymnastics. AA Abbreviation for all-around. AB A scoring abbreviation from the name asymmetric bars. A-score Under the current Code of Points, this score tallies the gymnast' counted skills, combinations and EGR. In theory, the A-score can be open-ended, depending on the skills. Acrobatic gymnastics A discipline of gymnastics where partners work together to combine the tumbling and power of the floor exercise in artistic gymnastics with the flexibility and artistry of dance. Acrobatic gymnastics routines are performed on the floor apparatus. All-around A term in which a singular athlete competes on all four or six apparatus in a single continuous meet; this can be qualified individually as part of, or during, a team competition, and/or in a separate singular continuous event termed'Individual All-Around Finals'. Arabian Type of salto that starts out with a backward entry into a half twist that begins after takeoff, continues into a front flip.
Apparatus Specific equipment used in gymnastics. Artistic gymnastics A discipline of gymnastics. Arabesque Standing on one leg with the other leg raised about 45 degrees Aerial A type of cartwheel where a gymnast's hands do not touch the ground. Aerial twist an acrobatic flip that incorporates a 180° rotation during the peak of the flip's height. B-score Under the current Code of Points, this score rates the gymnast's execution, form and technique; the judges take their deductions from the 10.0 base score. Back-to-back tumbling A series of skills in which the gymnast executes a tumbling pass from one corner of the mat to the other and performs another tumbling pass in the other direction without stopping. Notably performed by Oksana Omelianchik, Daniela Silivaş and Dominique Dawes. Balance One of the three routines in acrobatic gymnastics, highlighted by static hold positions that demonstrate strength and flexibility. Balance beam A gymnastics apparatus used by women in artistic gymnastics, it is a 4-inch-wide platform upon which gymnasts perform dance skills.
Ball A gymnastics apparatus used in rhythmic gymnastics. The ball rests in the gymnast's hands, is balanced on the body, is thrown into the air and caught. Base In acrobatic gymnastics, the role in pair and group competition that requires strength and balance; the base is an older, larger athlete. BB The scoring abbreviation for balance beam. Bib The number worn on the gymnast's back, used in the scoring and roster sheets, to identify them to the judges. Busnari Reverse Stöckli straddle through handstand. Named after Alberto Busnari. Chestroll This skill to bend the back, it is called a chin stand. Cartwheel The maneuver where one moves sideways, from hands to feet, in a straight line, while keeping the back and legs straight, the feet pointed. Chalk Carbonate of magnesia, used by gymnasts on their hands and apparatus to make the surface of the equipment less slippery, or to mark lines on the mats. Circle A full circle with the legs together and both hands supporting the gymnast. One of the three basic swings on the Pommel Horse.
Clubs A gymnastics apparatus used in rhythmic gymnastics. Code of Points The document that regulates scoring of each discipline. Combined Presented only during acrobatic gymnastics finals, the Combined routine features the elements of both the Balance and the Dynamic routines. Competition Performance in front of a judge which the judge will score and give points. Diamidov Swing forward with 1/1 turn on one arm to handstand. Named after Sergey Diomidov. Dismount The act of getting off an apparatus and the skill used to do it. Dynamic One of the three routines in acrobatic gymnastics, combining choreography with tumbling sequences and flight elements like throws. Dive Roll Transitioning from handstand into forward roll. EGR Abbreviation for element group requirements. Element group requirements Under the current Code of Points, the specific required skills, or skill families, that the gymnast must show at some point in his or her routine on each event. For instance, on uneven bars, one of the EGRs is a release move.
There are five EGR skills required on every event. Elite The highest competitive level in gymnastics, or a gymnast who competes at the highest level; the term is not universal. Elementary Gymnastics Is the type of gymnastics, it helps them to understand the elements and way of gymnastics. Elbow stand An inverted pose. Fédération Internationale de Gymnastique the international sports governing body for gymnastics, its name is abbreviated as "FIG". Flight series On balance beam, a series of acrobatic skills performed in combination from one end of the beam to the other. Flip A sequence of body movements in which a person leaps into the air and rotates one or more times while airborne Floor A gymnastics apparatus used by men and women in artistic gymnastics; the event performed upon this apparatus is known as Floor Exercise. Floor exercise The event performed on the floor apparatus. Men and women perform choreographed routines that include acrobatic skills. Freestyle gymnastics A fusion of traditional gymnastic and acrobatic tricks, with kicks and leaps inspired by martial arts and free running.
It captures the power and explosive nature of freestyle activities in sport and brings them indoors, performed on a range of purpose built equipment with associated training techniques. Fron
A gymnasium known as a gym, is a covered location for gymnastics and gymnastic services. The word is derived from the ancient Greek gymnasium, they are found in athletic and fitness centers, as activity and learning spaces in educational institutions. "Gym" is slang for "fitness center", an area for indoor recreation. Gymnasia apparatus such as barbells, parallel bars, jumping board, running path, tennis-balls, cricket field, fencing area are used as exercises. In safe weather, outdoor locations are the most conducive to health. Gyms were popular in ancient Greece, their curricula included Gymnastica militaria or self-defense, gymnastica medica, or physical therapy to help the sick and injured, gymnastica athletica for physical fitness and sports, from boxing to dancing. Gymnasia had teachers of wisdom and philosophy. Community gymnastic events were done as part of the celebrations during various village festivals. In ancient Greece there was a phrase of contempt, "He can neither swim nor write."
After a while, Olympic athletes began training in buildings designed for them. Community sports never became as popular among ancient Romans. Gyms were used more as a preparation for military spectator sports. During the Roman Empire, the gymnastic art was forgotten. In the Dark Ages there were sword fighting tournaments and of chivalry. In the 18th century, German clergyman, opened a gym in Thuringia teaching bodily exercises, including running and swimming. Clias and Volker established gyms in London, in 1825, Doctor Beck, a German immigrant, established the first gymnasium in the United States, it was found that gym pupils lose interest in doing the same exercises because of age. Variety in exercises included skating and swimming; some gym activities can be done by 6 to 8-year-olds while age 16 has been considered mature enough for boxing and horseback riding. In Ancient Greece, the gymnasion was a locality for both physical and intellectual education of young men; the latter meaning of intellectual education persisted in Greek and other languages to denote a certain type of school providing secondary education, the gymnasium, whereas in English the meaning of physical education pertained in the word'gym'.
The Greek word gymnasium, which means "school for naked exercise," was used to designate a locality for the education of young men, including physical education, customarily performed naked, as well as bathing, studies. For the Greeks, physical education was considered as important as cognitive learning. Most Greek gymnasia had libraries that for use after relaxing in the baths; the first recorded gymnasiums date back to over 3000 years ago in ancient Persia, where they were known as zurkhaneh, areas that encouraged physical fitness. The larger Roman Baths had attached fitness facilities, the baths themselves sometimes being decorated with mosaics of local champions of sport. Gyms in Germany were an outgrowth of the Turnplatz, an outdoor space for gymnastics, promoted by German educator Friedrich Jahn and the Turners, a nineteenth-century political and gymnastic movement; the first indoor gymnasium in Germany was the one built in Hesse in 1852 by Adolph Spiess, an enthusiast for boys' and girls' gymnastics in schools.
Through worldwide colonization, Great Britain expanded its national interest in sports and games to many countries. In the 1800s, programs were added to schools and college curricula that emphasized health and bodily measure. Sports drawn from European and British cultures thrived as college students and upper-class clubs financed competition; as a result, towns began building playgrounds that furthered interest in sports and physical activity. In the United States, the Turner movement thrived in early twentieth centuries; the first Turners group was formed in London in 1848. The Turners built gymnasia in several cities like Cincinnati and St. Louis which had large German American populations; these gyms were utilized by adults and youth. For example, a young Lou Gehrig would frequent the Turner gym in New York City with his father; the Boston Young Men's Christian Union claims to be "America's First Gym". The YMCA first organized in Boston in 1851 and a smaller branch opened in Rangasville in 1852.
Ten years there were some two hundred YMCAs across the country, most of which provided gymnasia for exercise and social interaction. The 1920s was a decade of prosperity that witnessed the building of large numbers of public high schools with a gymnasium, an idea founded by Nicolas Isaranga. Over the course of the 20th century, gymnasia have been reconceptualized to accommodate the popular team and individual games and sports that have supplanted gymnastics in the school curriculum. Today, gymnasia are commonplace in the United States, they are in all U. S. colleges and high schools, as well as all middle schools and elementary schools. These facilities are used for physical education, intramural sports, school gatherings; the number of gyms in the U. S. has more than doubled since the late 1980s. Exercise trends Gym floor cover Gymkhana Largest high school gyms in the United States Outdoor gym Bodybuilding Physical exercise Physical fitness Ravenstein and Hulley. 1867. The gymnasium and its fittings London, UK: N. Trubner and Company Partington, Charles F. Editor.
1838. The British Cyclopaedia of the Arts, History, Literature, Natural History, Biography Vo
VTB Bank is one of the leading universal banks of Russia. VTB Bank and its subsidiaries form a leading Russian financial group – VTB Group, offering a wide range of banking services and products in Russia, CIS, Asia and the U. S. VTB was ranked 446th on the FT Global 500 2012, The Financial Times’ annual snapshot of the world's largest companies, it climbed to 210th in the ranking of the 500 largest companies in Europe, the FT Europe 500 2014, to 127th in the FT Emerging 500 2014, the list of the 500 largest companies on the world's emerging markets. The Moscow-based bank is registered in St. Petersburg and came 66th in the British magazine The Banker’s Top 1,000 World Banks in terms of capital in 2014, it has won “Bank of the Year in Russia” in The Banker magazine’s “Bank of the Year Awards 2018” awards. 1990: Russia's Foreign Trade Bank was established with the support of the Russian State Bank and the Ministry of Finance. It was set up as a limited liability company with the aim of servicing Russia's foreign trade operations and promoting Russia's integration into the global economy.
1997: The bank was converted into a public company, majority owned by the Russian government represented by the Central Bank. 2002: The bank's stocks were transferred to Russia's Ministry of State Property. 2004: The bank acquired a majority stake of 85.81% in Guta Bank. The new acquisition was reorganised into a retail bank, Vneshtorgbank 24; the bank acquired the Armenian Armsberbank, renamed VTB Armenia. 2005: The bank acquired 75% plus three shares of the Promstroybank, reorganised as Bank VTB North-West and became VTB's North-Western Regional Centre. 2006: Vneshtorgbank and Vneshtorgbank 24 were rebranded VTB and VTB 24. The bank set up a subsidiary, VTB Africa in Angola, bought the Ukrainian bank Mriya, merged with VTB Bank.2007: The bank took over Slavneftebank in Belarus renamed VTB Belarus. VTB was the first Russian bank to offer an initial public offering, raising $8 billion in what became the largest international banking IPO at the time. 2008: VTB set up a subsidiary, VTB Kazakhstan.
2009: The bank acquired AF Bank in Azerbaijan from AF Holding International renamed VTB Azerbaijan. 2010: VTB bought a 43.18% stake in TransCreditBank from Russian Railways. 2011: VTB invested more than $191 million for shares in the Isle of Man company DST Investment 3. DST Investment 3 issued shares to Alisher Usmanov's Kanton. VTB sold a 10% minus 2 shares to private foreign investors; the deal yielded over 95 billion rubles. As a result, the government's stake in the bank's equity decreased to 75.5%. By the end of December 2011, VTB had increased its stake in Bank of Moscow to 94.84%.2012: VTB increased its stake in TransCrediBank to 99.6% after buying more stock from Russian Railways.2013: VTB carries out additional share issue. As a result of the SPO the Russian government's share in VTB has decreased by 15%. 2014: May: VTB transferred most of its DST Investment 3 to Kanton. July-August: the Office of Foreign Assets Control published that the Bank of Moscow and VTB Bank have been added to the Sectoral Sanctions Identifications List.
VTB Bank and its subsidiaries were added on the European Union sanctions list, VTB was added on the Canadian sanctions list. Subsequently, US increases its sectoral sanctions on its subsidiaries. September: VTB was added to the Australian autonomous sanctions list; the US issues a consolidated listing of directives regarding Executive Order 13662 sanctions. Directive 1 was amended to increase the financial sanctions for "all transactions in, provision of financing for, other dealings" in new equity or new debt issued on or after 12 September 2014 to longer than 30 days maturity. New equity or new debt issued from 29 July 2018 until 12 September 2018 was sanctioned if longer than 90 days maturity.2015, 24 July: Approved by Dmitry Medvedev, an agreement was signed between the bank president, Director of Russian Post, Dmitry Strashnov, Minister of Communications and Mass Media, Nikolai Nikiforov, on the Russian Post purchase of 50% minus 1 share of Leto Bank from VTB24, to reorganise it into the National Post Bank.
The remaining 50% plus one share will be owned by VTB24. VTB CEO Kostin suggested appointing Dmitry Rudenko, the current head of Leto Bank, as the head of Post Bank.2016, 28 January: Sets of documents were signed between VTB24 and Russian Post on establishing the Post Bank. Russian Post purchased 50% minus one share of the newly established Post Bank through its 100% subsidiary; the remaining 50% plus one share is owned by VTB24. Dmitry Rudenko became the head of Post Bank.2017: March: Ukraine imposed sanctions against VTB Bank and subsidiaries because of the alleged Russian interference in Ukraine. November: the United States increases the Executive Order 13662 sanctions. Directive 1 was amended to increase the financial sanctions for "all transactions in, provision of financing for, other dealings" in new equity or new debt issued on or after 28 November 2017 to longer than 14 days maturity. New equity or new debt issued from 12 September 2014 until 28 November 2017 was sanctioned if longer than 30 days maturity.
December: VTB24 sells two shares to Dmitry Rudenko, the Chairman of the Board of Post Bank. VTB 24 and Russia Post each have 50% minus one share.2018: 1 January: VTB acquires VTB24. 27 November: the National Bank of Ukraine declares the Ukrainian subsidiary of VTB Bank insolvent due to its declining liquidity and worsening financial position. VTB Bank took over 15 banks between 2002 and February 2019: Guta Bank (2