Anatolia known as Asia Minor, Asian Turkey, the Anatolian peninsula or the Anatolian plateau, is the westernmost protrusion of Asia, which makes up the majority of modern-day Turkey. The region is bounded by the Black Sea to the north, the Mediterranean Sea to the south, the Armenian Highlands to the east and the Aegean Sea to the west; the Sea of Marmara forms a connection between the Black and Aegean Seas through the Bosphorus and Dardanelles straits and separates Anatolia from Thrace on the European mainland. The eastern border of Anatolia is traditionally held to be a line between the Gulf of Alexandretta and the Black Sea, bounded by the Armenian Highland to the east and Mesopotamia to the southeast. Thus, traditionally Anatolia is the territory that comprises the western two-thirds of the Asian part of Turkey. Nowadays, Anatolia is often considered to be synonymous with Asian Turkey, which comprises the entire country. By some definitions, the area called the Armenian highlands lies beyond the boundary of the Anatolian plateau.
The official name of this inland region is the Eastern Anatolia Region. The ancient inhabitants of Anatolia spoke the now-extinct Anatolian languages, which were replaced by the Greek language starting from classical antiquity and during the Hellenistic and Byzantine periods. Major Anatolian languages included Hittite and Lydian among other more poorly attested relatives; the Turkification of Anatolia began under the Seljuk Empire in the late 11th century and continued under the Ottoman Empire between the late 13th and early 20th centuries. However, various non-Turkic languages continue to be spoken by minorities in Anatolia today, including Kurdish, Neo-Aramaic, Arabic, Laz and Greek. Other ancient peoples in the region included Galatians, Assyrians, Cimmerians, as well as Ionian and Aeolian Greeks. Traditionally, Anatolia is considered to extend in the east to an indefinite line running from the Gulf of Alexandretta to the Black Sea, coterminous with the Anatolian Plateau; this traditional geographical definition is used, for example, in the latest edition of Merriam-Webster's Geographical Dictionary, Under this definition, Anatolia is bounded to the east by the Armenian Highlands, the Euphrates before that river bends to the southeast to enter Mesopotamia.
To the southeast, it is bounded by the ranges that separate it from the Orontes valley in Syria and the Mesopotamian plain. Following the Armenian genocide, Ottoman Armenia was renamed "Eastern Anatolia" by the newly established Turkish government. Vazken Davidian terms the expanded use of "Anatolia" to apply to territory referred to as Armenia an "ahistorical imposition", notes that a growing body of literature is uncomfortable with referring to the Ottoman East as "Eastern Anatolia". Most archeological sources consider the boundary of Anatolia to be Turkey's eastern border; the highest mountains in "Eastern Anatolia" are Mount Ararat. The Euphrates, Araxes and Murat rivers connect the Armenian plateau to the South Caucasus and the Upper Euphrates Valley. Along with the Çoruh, these rivers are the longest in "Eastern Anatolia"; the oldest known reference to Anatolia – as “Land of the Hatti” – appears on Mesopotamian cuneiform tablets from the period of the Akkadian Empire. The first recorded name the Greeks used for the Anatolian peninsula, Ἀσία echoed the name of the Assuwa league in western Anatolia.
As the name "Asia" broadened its scope to apply to other areas east of the Mediterranean, Greeks in Late Antiquity came to use the name Μικρὰ Ἀσία or Asia Minor, meaning "Lesser Asia" to refer to present-day Anatolia. The English-language name Anatolia itself derives from the Greek ἀνατολή meaning “the East” or more “sunrise”; the precise reference of this term has varied over time originally referring to the Aeolian and Dorian colonies on the west coast of Asia Minor. In the Byzantine Empire, the Anatolic Theme was a theme covering the western and central parts of Turkey's present-day Central Anatolia Region; the term "Anatolia" is Medieval Latin. The modern Turkish form of Anatolia, derives from the Greek name Aνατολή; the Russian male name Anatoly and the French Anatole share the same linguistic origin. The term "Anatolia" referred to a northwestern Byzantine province. By the 12th century Europeans had started referring to Anatolia as Turchia, it has also been called "Asia Minor". In earlier times, it was called" Rûm" by the Seljuqs.
During the era of the Ottoman Empire mapmakers outside the Empire referred to the mountainous plateau in eastern Anatolia as Armenia. Other contemporary sources called the same area Kurdistan. Geographers have variously used the terms east Anatolian plateau and Armenian plateau to refer to the region, although the territory encompassed by each term overlaps with the other. According to archaeologist Lori Khatchadourian this difference in terminology "primarily result from the shifting political fortunes and cultural trajectories of the region since the nineteenth century."Turkey's First Geography Congress in 1941 created two regions to the east of the Gulf of Iskenderun-Black Sea line named the Eastern Anatolia Region and the Southeastern Anatolia Region, the former corresponding to the weste
Djibouti is a country located in the Horn of Africa. It is bordered by Eritrea in the north, Ethiopia in the west and south, Somalia in the southeast; the remainder of the border is formed by the Gulf of Aden at the east. Djibouti occupies a total area of 23,200 km2; the state of Djibouti is predominantly inhabited by two ethnic groups, the Somali and the Afar people, the Somalis being the major ethnic group of the country. Djibouti has always been a active member in the African Union and the Arab League. In antiquity, the territory together with Somalia was part of the Land of Punt. Nearby Zeila, now in Somalia, was the seat of the medieval Ifat Sultanates. In the late 19th century, the colony of French Somaliland was established following treaties signed by the ruling Somali and Afar sultans with the French and its railroad to Dire Dawa allowed it to supersede Zeila as the port for southern Ethiopia and the Ogaden, it was subsequently renamed to the French Territory of the Afars and the Issas in 1967.
A decade the Djiboutian people voted for independence. This marked the establishment of the Republic of Djibouti, named after its capital city. Djibouti joined the United Nations the same year, on 20 September 1977. In the early 1990s, tensions over government representation led to armed conflict, which ended in a power-sharing agreement in 2000 between the ruling party and the opposition. Djibouti is a multi-ethnic nation with a population of over 942,333 inhabitants. Somali and French are the country's three official languages. About 94% of residents adhere to Islam, the official religion and has been predominant in the region for more than a thousand years; the Somali and Afar make up the two largest ethnic groups. Both speak Afroasiatic languages. Djibouti is strategically located near some of the world's busiest shipping lanes, controlling access to the Red Sea and Indian Ocean, it serves as a key refuelling and transshipment center, is the principal maritime port for imports from and exports to neighboring Ethiopia.
A burgeoning commercial hub, the nation is the site of various foreign military bases, including Camp Lemonnier. The Intergovernmental Authority on Development regional body has its headquarters in Djibouti City. Djibouti is known as the Republic of Djibouti. In local languages it is known as Yibuuti, جيبوتي, Jībūtī, Jabuuti; the name of the country is derived from the city of the epynomous country's capital. The etymology of the city of Djibout is disputed. Several theories and legends exist regarding varying based on ethnicity. One theory derives it from the Afar word gabouti, meaning "plate" referring to the geographical features of the area. Another connects it to gabood, meaning "upland/plateau". From 1862 until 1894, the land to the north of the Gulf of Tadjoura was called "Obock". Under French administration, from 1883 to 1967 the area was known as French Somaliland, from 1967 to 1977 as the French Territory of the Afars and the Issas. Djibouti area has been inhabited since the Neolithic. According to linguists, the first Afroasiatic-speaking populations arrived in the region during this period from the family's proposed urheimat in the Nile Valley, or the Near East.
Other scholars propose that the Afroasiatic family developed in situ in the Horn, with its speakers subsequently dispersing from there. Pottery predating the mid-2nd millennium has been found at Asa Koma, an inland lake area on the Gobaad Plain; the site's ware is characterized by punctate and incision geometric designs, which bear a similarity to the Sabir culture phase 1 ceramics from Ma'layba in Southern Arabia. Long-horned humpless cattle bones have been discovered at Asa Koma, suggesting that domesticated cattle were present by around 3,500 years ago. Rock art of what appear to be antelopes and a giraffe are found at Dorra and Balho. Handoga, dated to the fourth millennium BP, has in turn yielded obsidian microliths and plain ceramics used by early nomadic pastoralists with domesticated cattle. Additionally, between Djibouti City and Loyada are a number of phallic stelae; the structures are associated with graves of rectangular shape that are flanked by vertical slabs, as found in central Ethiopia.
The Djibouti-Loyada stelae are of uncertain age, some of them are adorned with a T-shaped symbol. Together with northern Somalia and the Red Sea coast of Sudan, Djibouti is considered the most location of the territory known to the Ancient Egyptians as Punt; the first mention of the Land of Punt dates to the 25th century BC. The Puntites were a nation of people who had close relations with Ancient Egypt during the reign of the 5th dynasty Pharaoh Sahure and the 18th dynasty Queen Hatshepsut. According to the temple murals at Deir el-Bahari, the Land of Punt was ruled at that time by King Parahu and Queen Ati. Through close contacts with the adjacent Arabian Peninsula for more than 1,000 years, the Somali and Afar ethnic groups in the region became among the first populations on the continent to embrace Islam; the Ifat Sultanate was a Muslim medieval kingdom in the Horn of Africa. Founded in 1285 by the Walashma dynasty, it was centered in Zeila. Ifat established bases in Djibouti and northern Somalia, from there expanded southward to the Ahmar Mountains.
Its Sultan Umar Walashma is recorded as hav
The Netherlands is a country located in Northwestern Europe. The European portion of the Netherlands consists of twelve separate provinces that border Germany to the east, Belgium to the south, the North Sea to the northwest, with maritime borders in the North Sea with Belgium and the United Kingdom. Together with three island territories in the Caribbean Sea—Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba— it forms a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands; the official language is Dutch, but a secondary official language in the province of Friesland is West Frisian. The six largest cities in the Netherlands are Amsterdam, The Hague, Utrecht and Tilburg. Amsterdam is the country's capital, while The Hague holds the seat of the States General and Supreme Court; the Port of Rotterdam is the largest port in Europe, the largest in any country outside Asia. The country is a founding member of the EU, Eurozone, G10, NATO, OECD and WTO, as well as a part of the Schengen Area and the trilateral Benelux Union.
It hosts several intergovernmental organisations and international courts, many of which are centered in The Hague, dubbed'the world's legal capital'. Netherlands means'lower countries' in reference to its low elevation and flat topography, with only about 50% of its land exceeding 1 metre above sea level, nearly 17% falling below sea level. Most of the areas below sea level, known as polders, are the result of land reclamation that began in the 16th century. With a population of 17.30 million people, all living within a total area of 41,500 square kilometres —of which the land area is 33,700 square kilometres —the Netherlands is one of the most densely populated countries in the world. It is the world's second-largest exporter of food and agricultural products, owing to its fertile soil, mild climate, intensive agriculture; the Netherlands was the third country in the world to have representative government, it has been a parliamentary constitutional monarchy with a unitary structure since 1848.
The country has a tradition of pillarisation and a long record of social tolerance, having legalised abortion and human euthanasia, along with maintaining a progressive drug policy. The Netherlands abolished the death penalty in 1870, allowed women's suffrage in 1917, became the world's first country to legalise same-sex marriage in 2001, its mixed-market advanced economy had the thirteenth-highest per capita income globally. The Netherlands ranks among the highest in international indexes of press freedom, economic freedom, human development, quality of life, as well as happiness; the Netherlands' turbulent history and shifts of power resulted in exceptionally many and varying names in different languages. There is diversity within languages; this holds for English, where Dutch is the adjective form and the misnomer Holland a synonym for the country "Netherlands". Dutch comes from Theodiscus and in the past centuries, the hub of Dutch culture is found in its most populous region, home to the capital city of Amsterdam.
Referring to the Netherlands as Holland in the English language is similar to calling the United Kingdom "Britain" by people outside the UK. The term is so pervasive among potential investors and tourists, that the Dutch government's international websites for tourism and trade are "holland.com" and "hollandtradeandinvest.com". The region of Holland consists of North and South Holland, two of the nation's twelve provinces a single province, earlier still, the County of Holland, a remnant of the dissolved Frisian Kingdom. Following the decline of the Duchy of Brabant and the County of Flanders, Holland became the most economically and politically important county in the Low Countries region; the emphasis on Holland during the formation of the Dutch Republic, the Eighty Years' War and the Anglo-Dutch Wars in the 16th, 17th and 18th century, made Holland serve as a pars pro toto for the entire country, now considered either incorrect, informal, or, depending on context, opprobrious. Nonetheless, Holland is used in reference to the Netherlands national football team.
The region called the Low Countries and the Country of the Netherlands. Place names with Neder, Nieder and Nedre and Bas or Inferior are in use in places all over Europe, they are sometimes used in a deictic relation to a higher ground that consecutively is indicated as Upper, Oben, Superior or Haut. In the case of the Low Countries / Netherlands the geographical location of the lower region has been more or less downstream and near the sea; the geographical location of the upper region, changed tremendously over time, depending on the location of the economic and military power governing the Low Countries area. The Romans made a distinction between the Roman provinces of downstream Germania Inferior and upstream Germania Superior; the designation'Low' to refer to the region returns again in the 10th century Duchy of Lower Lorraine, that covered much of the Low Countries. But this time the corresponding Upper region is Upper Lorraine, in nowadays Northern France; the Dukes of Burgundy, who ruled the Low Countries in the 15th century, used the term les pays de par deçà for the Low Countries as opposed to les pays de par delà for their original
Fernão Mendes Pinto
Fernão Mendes Pinto was a Portuguese explorer and writer. His voyages are recorded in his autobiographical memoir; the historical accuracy of the work is debatable due to the many events which seem far fetched or at least exaggerated, earning him the nickname "Fernão Mentes Minto". Some aspects of the work can be verified through Pinto's service to the Portuguese Crown and by his association with Jesuit missionaries. Fernão Mendes Pinto was born in Montemor-o-Velho, Portugal to a poor rural family. Pinto had two sisters. In 1551, a brother, Álvaro, was recorded in Portuguese Malacca. Letters record the martyr's death of a brother in Malacca. In 1557, Francisco Garcia de Vargas, Pinto's wealthy cousin is recorded at Cochin, he was related to the wealthy Mendes family who were descendants of Jewish Marranos who lived in Portugal. They had a monopoly of the black pepper commerce in Portugal and some of them moved to Antwerp in Belgium Pinto described his childhood as spartan. In 1521, hoping to improve the boy's prospects, an uncle took him to Lisbon.
There, Pinto was employed in the household service of a noblewoman. After eighteen months or so, Pinto fled. At the docks, he was hired as a ship's boy on a cargo vessel bound for Setúbal. On the way, French pirates captured the passengers were set upon the shore at Alentejo. Pinto made his way to Setúbal, where he entered the service of Francisco de Faria, a knight of Santiago, he remained there for four years and joined the service of Jorge de Lencastre, a master of the Order of Santiago. Pinto held that position for a number of years. Although comfortable, it held no promise of advancement. Therefore, at twenty-eight, Pinto left to join the Portuguese India Armadas. Pinto's travels can be divided into three phases: firstly, from Portugal to India. Pinto returned to Europe. On 11 March 1537, Pinto left Lisbon for India via Portuguese Mozambique. On 5 September that year, he arrived in a fortified island and town northwest of Bombay. Pinto joined a Portuguese reconnaissance mission to the Red Sea via Ethiopia.
The mission was to deliver a message to Portuguese soldiers guarding Eleni of Ethiopia, the mother of "Prester John" in a mountain fortress. After leaving Massawa, the mission engaged three Turkish galleys in battle; the Portuguese ships were defeated and their crews taken to Mocha to be sold as slaves. Pinto was sold to a Greek Muslim, a cruel master. Pinto was sold to a Jewish merchant for about thirty ducats' worth of dates. With the Jewish merchant, Pinto travelled the caravan route to Hormuz, a leading market town in the Persian Gulf. There, Pinto was freed by way of payment of three hundred ducats from the Portuguese crown, he was made captain of the Fortress of Hormuz and the Portuguese king's special magistrate for Indian affairs. Soon after being freed, Pinto sailed on a Portuguese cargo ship to Goa. Against his will, Pinto was transferred en route to a naval fleet bound for the Mughal port city of Debal near Thatta. After enduring battles with Ottoman ships, Pinto reached Goa. From 1539, Pinto remained in Malacca under the newly appointed captain of Malacca.
Pinto was sent to establish diplomatic contacts with small kingdoms allied with the Portuguese against the Muslims of northern Sumatra. In 1569, he discovered. Following Pinto's mission to Sumatra, he was sent to Patani, on the eastern shore of the Malay peninsula. From there, Pinto made an unsuccessful delivery of merchandise to Siam; the goods were stolen by pirates who were chased by Pinto and António de Faria. Pinto continued trading operations in the South China Sea in the Gulf of Tonkin. Pinto raided a tomb of the Emperor of China. Pinto was shipwrecked, apprehended by the Chinese and sentenced to one year hard labour on the Great Wall of China. Before completing his sentence, Pinto was taken prisoner by invading Tatars, he became an agent of the Tartars and travelled with them to Cochinchina, the southernmost part of modern-day Cambodia and Vietnam. Pinto describes his encounter with a "pope-like" man the Dalai Lama, who had never heard of Europe. Pinto and two companions jumped ship to a Chinese pirate junk and were shipwrecked onto the Japanese island of Tanegashima, south of Kyūshū.
Pinto claimed to be the first westerner to enter Japan. In 1543, Pinto landed in Japan, he claimed that he introduced the arquebus to Japan, is the first European to set foot on japanese soil. However it is accepted now that several Portuguese traders such as António Mota and Francisco Zeimoto made it to Japan a year before Pinto; the firearm was used in the Japanese civil wars. It was known as the tanegashima. Pinto facilitated trade between the Japan. At one point, he was shipwrecked on the Ryukyu Islands. In 1549, Pinto left Kagoshima accompanied by a Japanese fugitive, Anjirō, he returned to Japan with a Catholic missionary. In 1554, Pinto joined the Society of Jesu
Italy the Italian Republic, is a country in Southern Europe. Located in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, Italy shares open land borders with France, Austria and the enclaved microstates San Marino and Vatican City. Italy covers an area of 301,340 km2 and has a temperate seasonal and Mediterranean climate. With around 61 million inhabitants, it is the fourth-most populous EU member state and the most populous country in Southern Europe. Due to its central geographic location in Southern Europe and the Mediterranean, Italy has been home to a myriad of peoples and cultures. In addition to the various ancient peoples dispersed throughout modern-day Italy, the most famous of which being the Indo-European Italics who gave the peninsula its name, beginning from the classical era and Carthaginians founded colonies in insular Italy and Genoa, Greeks established settlements in the so-called Magna Graecia, while Etruscans and Celts inhabited central and northern Italy respectively; the Italic tribe known as the Latins formed the Roman Kingdom in the 8th century BC, which became a republic with a government of the Senate and the People.
The Roman Republic conquered and assimilated its neighbours on the peninsula, in some cases through the establishment of federations, the Republic expanded and conquered parts of Europe, North Africa and the Middle East. By the first century BC, the Roman Empire emerged as the dominant power in the Mediterranean Basin and became the leading cultural and religious centre of Western civilisation, inaugurating the Pax Romana, a period of more than 200 years during which Italy's technology, economy and literature flourished. Italy remained the metropole of the Roman Empire; the legacy of the Roman Empire endured its fall and can be observed in the global distribution of culture, governments and the Latin script. During the Early Middle Ages, Italy endured sociopolitical collapse and barbarian invasions, but by the 11th century, numerous rival city-states and maritime republics in the northern and central regions of Italy, rose to great prosperity through shipping and banking, laying the groundwork for modern capitalism.
These independent statelets served as Europe's main trading hubs with Asia and the Near East enjoying a greater degree of democracy than the larger feudal monarchies that were consolidating throughout Europe. The Renaissance began in Italy and spread to the rest of Europe, bringing a renewed interest in humanism, science and art. Italian culture flourished, producing famous scholars and polymaths such as Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael and Machiavelli. During the Middle Ages, Italian explorers such as Marco Polo, Christopher Columbus, Amerigo Vespucci, John Cabot and Giovanni da Verrazzano discovered new routes to the Far East and the New World, helping to usher in the European Age of Discovery. Italy's commercial and political power waned with the opening of trade routes that bypassed the Mediterranean. Centuries of infighting between the Italian city-states, such as the Italian Wars of the 15th and 16th centuries, left the region fragmented, it was subsequently conquered and further divided by European powers such as France and Austria.
By the mid-19th century, rising Italian nationalism and calls for independence from foreign control led to a period of revolutionary political upheaval. After centuries of foreign domination and political division, Italy was entirely unified in 1871, establishing the Kingdom of Italy as a great power. From the late 19th century to the early 20th century, Italy industrialised, namely in the north, acquired a colonial empire, while the south remained impoverished and excluded from industrialisation, fuelling a large and influential diaspora. Despite being one of the main victors in World War I, Italy entered a period of economic crisis and social turmoil, leading to the rise of a fascist dictatorship in 1922. Participation in World War II on the Axis side ended in military defeat, economic destruction and the Italian Civil War. Following the liberation of Italy and the rise of the resistance, the country abolished the monarchy, reinstated democracy, enjoyed a prolonged economic boom and, despite periods of sociopolitical turmoil became a developed country.
Today, Italy is considered to be one of the world's most culturally and economically advanced countries, with the sixth-largest worldwide national wealth. Its advanced economy ranks eighth-largest in the world and third in the Eurozone by nominal GDP. Italy owns the third-largest central bank gold reserve, it has a high level of human development, it stands among the top countries for life expectancy. The country plays a prominent role in regional and global economic, military and diplomatic affairs. Italy is a founding and leading member of the European Union and a member of numerous international institutions, including the UN, NATO, the OECD, the OSCE, the WTO, the G7, the G20, the Union for the Mediterranean, the Council of Europe, Uniting for Consensus, the Schengen Area and many more; as a reflection
Sri Lanka the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, is an island country in South Asia, located in the Indian Ocean to the southwest of the Bay of Bengal and to the southeast of the Arabian Sea. The island is geographically separated from the Indian subcontinent by the Gulf of Mannar and the Palk Strait; the legislative capital, Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte, is a suburb of the commercial capital and largest city, Colombo. Sri Lanka's documented history spans 3,000 years, with evidence of pre-historic human settlements dating back to at least 125,000 years, it has a rich cultural heritage and the first known Buddhist writings of Sri Lanka, the Pāli Canon, date back to the Fourth Buddhist council in 29 BC. Its geographic location and deep harbours made it of great strategic importance from the time of the ancient Silk Road through to the modern Maritime Silk Road. Sri Lanka was known from the beginning of British colonial rule as Ceylon. A nationalist political movement arose in the country in the early 20th century to obtain political independence, granted in 1948.
Sri Lanka's recent history has been marred by a 26-year civil war, which decisively ended when the Sri Lanka Armed Forces defeated the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam in 2009. The current constitution stipulates the political system as a republic and a unitary state governed by a semi-presidential system, it has had a long history of international engagement, as a founding member of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, a member of the United Nations, the Commonwealth of Nations, the G77, the Non-Aligned Movement. Along with the Maldives, Sri Lanka is one of only two South Asian countries rated "high" on the Human Development Index, with its HDI rating and per capita income the highest among South Asian nations; the Sri Lankan constitution accords Buddhism the "foremost place", although it does not identify it as a state religion. Buddhism is given special privileges in the Sri Lankan constitution; the island is home to many cultures and ethnicities. The majority of the population is from the Sinhalese ethnicity, while a large minority of Tamils have played an influential role in the island's history.
Moors, Malays and the indigenous Vedda are established groups on the island. In antiquity, Sri Lanka was known to travellers by a variety of names. According to the Mahavamsa, the legendary Prince Vijaya named the land Tambapanni, because his followers' hands were reddened by the red soil of the area. In Hindu mythology, such as the Ramayana, the island was referred to as Lankā; the Tamil term Eelam, was used to designate the whole island in Sangam literature. The island was known under Chola rule as Mummudi Cholamandalam. Ancient Greek geographers called it Taprobanē from the word Tambapanni; the Persians and Arabs referred to it as Sarandīb from Cerentivu or Siṃhaladvīpaḥ. Ceilão, the name given to Sri Lanka by the Portuguese Empire when it arrived in 1505, was transliterated into English as Ceylon; as a British crown colony, the island was known as Ceylon. The country is now known in Sinhala in Tamil as Ilaṅkai. In 1972, its formal name was changed to "Free and Independent Republic of Sri Lanka".
In 1978 it was changed to the "Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka". As the name Ceylon still appears in the names of a number of organisations, the Sri Lankan government announced in 2011 a plan to rename all those over which it has authority; the pre-history of Sri Lanka goes back 125,000 years and even as far back as 500,000 years. The era spans the Palaeolithic and early Iron Ages. Among the Paleolithic human settlements discovered in Sri Lanka, which dates back to 37,000 BP, Batadombalena and Belilena are the most important. In these caves, archaeologists have found the remains of anatomically modern humans which they have named Balangoda Man, other evidence suggesting that they may have engaged in agriculture and kept domestic dogs for driving game. One of the first written references to the island is found in the Indian epic Ramayana, which provides details of a kingdom named Lanka, created by the divine sculptor Vishwakarma for Kubera, the Lord of Wealth, it is said that Kubera was overthrown by his demon stepbrother Ravana, the powerful emperor who built a mythical flying machine named Dandu Monara.
The modern city of Wariyapola is described as Ravana's airport. Early inhabitants of Sri Lanka were ancestors of the Vedda people, an indigenous people numbering 2,500 living in modern-day Sri Lanka; the 19th-century Irish historian James Emerson Tennent theorized that Galle, a city in southern Sri Lanka, was the ancient seaport of Tarshish from which King Solomon is said to have drawn ivory and other valuables. According to the Mahāvamsa, a chronicle written in Pāḷi, the original inhabitants of Sri Lanka are the Yakshas and Nagas. Ancient cemeteries that were used before 600 BC and other signs of advanced civilisation have been discovered in Sri Lanka. Sinhalese history traditionally starts in 543 BC with the arrival of Prince Vijaya, a semi-legendary prince who sailed with 700 followers to Sri Lanka, after being expelled from Vanga Kingdom (present-day Ben
Sokollu Mehmed Pasha
Sokollu Mehmed Pasha was an Ottoman statesman. Born in Ottoman Bosnia into an Orthodox Christian family, Mehmed was taken away at an early age as part of the Ottoman devşirme system of collection of Christian boys to be raised to serve as a janissary; these boys were converted to Islam and educated, but in turn were offered opportunities to work and to rise within the Ottoman imperial system. He rose through the ranks of the Ottoman imperial system holding positions as commander of the imperial guard, High Admiral of the Fleet, Governor-General of Rumelia, Third Vizier, Second Vizier, as Grand Vizier under three sultans: Suleiman the Magnificent, Selim II, Murad III, he was assassinated in 1579, ending his near 15-years of service to several Sultans, as sole legal representative in the administration of state affairs. Sokollu's birth name was Bajica, he was of ethnic Serb origin, he was said to be born into a modest shepherd family, adherent to the Serbian Orthodox Church, in or near Sokolovići in the vicinity of modern-day Rudo.
"Sokollu" is a demonym, derived from his place of birth. His father was named Dimitrije, he had two brothers and a sister, who married the older brother of Hüseyin Pasha Boljanić, as well as at least one uncle. However, details about his family and relations are disputed on two major counts. One is his relationship to Makarije Sokolović. Traditionally identified as his brother, today some historians consider him to have been either a nephew or distant relative; the second is the matter of Mehmed's uncle. By some accounts, his uncle was a monk at the Mileševa monastery who had his two nephews and Makarije, educated there. Other sources suggest. In 1516, an Ottoman expedition gathering up boys as part of the devşirme system reached Sokol. According to folklore, Bajica was either taken from his father's home or, due to a reputation as a gifted child chosen by the commanding Yeşilce Mehmed Bey; the story further holds that his uncle unsuccessfully appealed to the authorities offering gold for the child's return.
He was imposed on the name of Mehmed and, first in Edirne and in Constantinople, received a thorough Ottoman education as a recruit, first as an apprentice Janissary. As proclaimed in Baghdad on 13 March 1535, Mehmed was sent to be one of the seven retainers of the Imperial Treasurer Iskender Çelebi. Upon Iskender's death, Mehmed returned to Constantinople. In addition to Turkish, he spoke Serbian, Arabic, Venetian-Italian and Latin language. Mehmed in 1541 first became an Imperial Chamberlain and the head of the Sultan's squires. In these positions he became close to Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent and learned from him; as a soldier, Mehmed excelled at the first Siege of Vienna. In 1546 the Kapudan Pasha Hayreddin Barbarossa died and Mehmed was appointed his successor. In this capacity he was present at the naval expedition against Trablus. During his five years in this position, Mehmed Pasha strengthened the arsenal of the naval fleet. Mehmed became Beylerbey of Rumelia in 1551, headquartered in Sofia.
While he was visiting the area of his birth, his mother recognized him by the birthmark on his face and embraced her child for the first time in more than thirty years. After the death of John Zápolya, king of Hungary as an Ottoman vassal, in 1540, Ferdinand I, Holy Roman Emperor looked to annex Zápolya's lands; the Hungarian diet had elected infant John Sigismund Zápolya, the son of Zápolya and Isabella Jagiellon, as King of Hungary, which broke the Treaty of Nagyvárad, Ferdinand I invaded Hungary. Isabella struggled to rule Hungary as Queen dowager for her son. Frater George Martinuzzi, appointed by John as regent, opposed her. Ferdinand I sent mercenary leader Bartolomeo Castoldo with more than 7,000 mercenaries who beat a contingent led by Péter Petrovics, killing more than 2,500 of them, near Csanád; the Sultan ordered Sokollu Mehmed Pasha to move into Hungary, so he assembled an army of 90,000 soldiers and fifty-four cannons and summoned the pashas of Smederevo and Nicopolis. When his forces reached Slankamen in Syrmia, George Martinuzzi begged Mehmed not to attack Transylvania, arguing that it had remained in the possession of the Sultan.
Mehmed rejected negotiation proposals, led Ottoman forces into Transylvania and soon captured 16 cities, including Bečej, Csanád and Lippa. In this campaign, Sokollu won over to his side local Serb-manned garrisons by pointing out to his common ethnicity with them. Martinuzzi responded by raising a rebellion in Transylvania, mustering one soldier from every household. Mehmed had to fall back and once again laid siege to Temesvár on 14 October with the main part of his army and 50 cannons. Mehmed demanded surrender, but the city's commander, István Losonci, replied with a recommendation for Mehmed's return to Rumelia. Mehmed could not seize it. Retreating to Belgrade, he initiated peace negotiations wi