Statler and Waldorf
Statler and Waldorf are a pair of Muppet characters known for their cantankerous opinions and shared penchant for heckling. The two elderly men first appeared in The Muppet Show in 1975, where they jeered the entirety of the cast and their performances from their balcony seats. Created by Jim Henson, the characters have been performed by numerous puppeteers, including Henson, in a variety of films and television productions within the Muppet franchise. Statler and Waldorf are named after two New York City hotels, the Statler Hilton and the Waldorf-Astoria; the characters are known for their heckling. In The Muppet Show, the two were always criticizing Fozzie Bear's humor, except for one occasion where Fozzie heckled them back. In contrast, they found themselves vastly entertaining and burst into mutual laughter at their own witticisms, it is revealed in the A Muppet Family Christmas special that the two hecklers were friends with Fozzie's mother, Emily Bear. Despite complaining about the show and how terrible some acts were, they would always be back the following week in the best seats in the house.
As to why, the original version of The Muppet Show theme song had Statler admitting, "I guess we'll never know."They had a predisposition for breaking the fourth wall. Author Ben Underwood remarked on how the characters "blur the boundary between performer and audience", as they are "concurrently audience members and performers". Underwood points to a second season incident in which the characters see themselves watching the Muppets, with Statler skeptical, saying "No one would watch junk like that"; the puppets were designed by Bonnie Erickson. They were named after the Statler Hilton and the Waldorf-Astoria. In "Sex and Violence," the pilot episode of The Muppet Show and Waldorf were performed by Jerry Nelson and Jim Henson, respectively. Nelson was unavailable for the first few weeks of production on The Muppet Show; as a result, Richard Hunt took on the role of Statler. Hunt and Henson would continue to perform the two characters until Henson's death in 1990. To portray the characters and Henson shared close space for hours at a time.
Beginning with The Muppet Christmas Carol and Waldorf were performed by Jerry Nelson and Dave Goelz, respectively. When Jerry Nelson left the Muppets, citing health reasons, Muppeteer Steve Whitmire took over as Statler; the two were performed by Drew Massey and Victor Yerrid in 2005 and 2006, most notably in the web series Statler and Waldorf: From the Balcony. Kevin Clash filled in for Goelz as Waldorf in a few episodes of Muppets Tonight. In 2017, Whitmire departed from the Muppets franchise, including the part of Statler, after being unwillingly dismissed from the part of Kermit the Frog in October 2016. While Matt Vogel was announced for the replacement for Kermit, Peter Linz had replaced Whitmire as the voice of Statler in advertisements. Statler and Waldorf appeared in the Saturday morning animated television series Muppet Babies. Both characters were voiced by Dave Coulier. In The Muppet Christmas Carol, they played the ghosts of Robert Marley. Whereas the novel A Christmas Carol features only a Jacob Marley, creating a Robert allowed for including the two Muppets, also references Bob Marley.
When Ebenezer Scrooge, played by Michael Caine, accuses them of always criticizing him, they reply "We were always heckling you." In Muppet Treasure Island, they were the figureheads of the Hispaniola. Statler complains about being stuck on the front of the ship, to which Waldorf replies it is better than being in the audience. In the 1996 series Muppets Tonight, based on a television rather than theatre show and Waldorf were shown watching the show at an assisted living facility, still making disparaging remarks; the duo are featured characters at Disney's Muppet*Vision 3D at Disney's Hollywood Studios as audio-animatronic Muppets helping Bean Bunny escape the theater and, of course, heckling the show. They make a cameo appearance in Pixar's 2008 short film Presto, where they can be seen in their theater box; the Muppet Newsflash: A Jim Henson News Blog announced on September 17, 2009, that Statler and Waldorf would release a book titled From the Balcony in 2010. However, the book was never released.
Statler and Waldorf appear in featured roles in The Muppets film. They are shown in Kermit's old office where they inform evil oil baron, Tex Richman, that the only thing that could stop his purchase of The Muppet Theater would be Kermit raising $10 million, they appear during one scene of the 2014 sequel Muppets Most Wanted. When the Muppets arrive in Berlin to perform at a run-down cabaret theater, marked by a sign reading "Die Muppets", the two joke as to whether this is an early review or a suggestion; this scene is presented in the "Statler and Waldorf Cut" of the film in its home video release. They appear as audience members in The Muppets TV series; the episode "Pig Out" features a B-plot focusing on Statler without Waldorf. Statler and Waldorf: From the Balcony is a multi-award–winning web show which ran biweekly on Movies.com from June 2005 until September 2006. The series spawned more than 35 episodes and featured many Muppet characters, both well-known classics and newly created characters.
The two elderly curmudgeons would discuss upcoming films, watch the latest movie trailers and share the week's "balconism" from their theater box. Both made an appearance in Marvel Team-Up #74. In this issue, Spider-Man teams up with the cast of Saturday Night Live to battle the Silver Samurai. Statler and Waldorf appear in typical style as hecklers on a balcony, they appear at the end of Weezer's video for the song "'Keep Fishin
Monkey is a common name that may refer to groups or species of mammals, in part, the simians of infraorder Simiiformes. The term is applied descriptively to groups of primates, such as families of new world monkeys and old world monkeys. Many monkey species are tree-dwelling, although there are species that live on the ground, such as baboons. Most species are active during the day. Monkeys are considered to be intelligent the old world monkeys of Catarrhini. Simians and tarsiers emerged within haplorrhines some 60 million years ago. New World monkeys and catarrhine monkeys emerged within the simians some 35 million years ago. Old World monkeys and Hominoidea emerged within the catarrhine monkeys some 25 million years ago. Extinct basal simians such as Aegyptopithecus or Parapithecus and sometimes the Catarrhini group are considered monkeys by primatologists. Lemurs and galagos are not monkeys. Like monkeys, tarsiers are haplorhine primates. Apes emerged within "monkeys" as sister of the Cercopithecidae in the Catarrhini, so cladistically they are monkeys as well.
There has been some resistance to directly designate apes as monkeys despite the scientific evidence, so "Old World monkey" may be taken to mean the Cercopithecoidea or the Catarrhini. That apes are monkeys was realized by Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon in the 18th century. Monkeys can be distinguished from other primates by having only two pectoral nipples, a pendulous penis, the lack of sensory whiskers. According to the Online Etymology Dictionary, the word "monkey" may originate in a German version of the Reynard the Fox fable, published circa 1580. In this version of the fable, a character named. In English, no clear distinction was made between "ape" and "monkey". Colloquially, the terms "monkey" and "ape" are used interchangeably. A few monkey species have the word "ape" in their common name, such as the Barbary ape. In the first half of the 20th century, the idea developed that there were trends in primate evolution and that the living members of the order could be arranged in a series, leading through "monkeys" and "apes" to humans.
Monkeys thus constituted a "grade" on the path to humans and were distinguished from "apes". Scientific classifications are now more based on monophyletic groups, groups consisting of all the descendants of a common ancestor; the New World monkeys and the Old World monkeys are each monophyletic groups, but their combination was not, since it excluded hominoids. Thus the term "monkey" no longer referred to a recognized scientific taxon; the smallest accepted taxon which contains all the monkeys is the infraorder Simiiformes, or simians. However this contains the hominoids, so that monkeys are, in terms of recognized taxa, non-hominoid simians. Colloquially and pop-culturally, the term is ambiguous and sometimes monkey includes non-human hominoids. In addition, frequent arguments are made for a monophyletic usage of the word "monkey" from the perspective that usage should reflect cladistics. A group of monkeys may be referred to as a tribe or a troop. Two separate groups of primates are referred to as "monkeys": New World monkeys from South and Central America and Old World monkeys from Africa and Asia.
Apes —consisting of gibbons, gorillas and humans—are catarrhines but were classically distinguished from monkeys. Monkeys range in size from the pygmy marmoset, which can be as small as 117 millimetres with a 172-millimetre tail and just over 100 grams in weight, to the male mandrill 1 metre long and weighing up to 36 kilograms; some are arboreal. Some characteristics are shared among the groups. Old World monkeys have trichromatic color vision like that of humans, while New World monkeys may be trichromatic, dichromatic, or—as in the owl monkeys and greater galagos—monochromatic. Although both the New and Old World monkeys, like the apes, have forward-facing eyes, the faces of Old World and New World monkeys look different, though again, each group shares some features such as the types of noses and rumps; the following list shows where the various monkey families are placed in the classification of living primates. ORDER PRIMATES Suborder Strepsirrhini: lemurs and galagos Suborder Haplorhini: tarsiers and apes Infraorder Tarsiiformes Family Tarsiidae: tarsiers Infraorder Simiiformes: simians Parvorder Platyrrhini: New World monkeys Family Callitrichidae: marmosets and tamarins Family Cebidae: capuchins and squirrel monkeys Family Aotidae: night monkeys Family Pitheciidae: titis and uakaris Family Atelidae: howler and woolly monkeys Parvorder Catarrhini Superfamily Cercopithecoidea Family Cercopithec
A weasel is a mammal of the genus Mustela of the family Mustelidae. The genus Mustela includes the least weasels, stoats and minks. Members of this genus are active predators, with long and slender bodies and short legs; the family Mustelidae is referred to as the "weasel family". In the UK, the term "weasel" refers to the smallest species, the least weasel. Weasels vary in length from 173 to 217 mm, females being smaller than the males, have red or brown upper coats and white bellies, they have slender bodies, which enable them to follow their prey into burrows. Their tails may be from 34 to 52 mm long. Weasels feed on small mammals and have from time to time been considered vermin because some species took poultry from farms or rabbits from commercial warrens, they do, on the other hand. They can be found all across the world except for Antarctica and neighbouring islands; the English word "weasel" was applied to one species of the genus, the European form of the least weasel. This usage is retained in British English, where the name is extended to cover several other small species of the genus.
However, in technical discourse and in American usage, the term "weasel" can refer to any member of the genus, or to the genus as a whole. Of the 17 extant species classified in the genus Mustela, 10 have "weasel" in their common names. Among those that do not are the stoat, the polecats, the ferret, the European mink; the American mink and the extinct sea mink were included in this genus as Mustela vison and Mustela macrodon but in 1999 were moved to the genus Neovison. The following information is according to the Integrated Taxonomic Information System. 1 Europe and northern Asia division excludes China. Hybrids in this genus include the polecat -- ferret the polecat -- mink hybrid. Weasels have been assigned a variety of cultural meanings. In Greek culture, a weasel near one's house is a sign of bad luck evil, "especially if there is in the household a girl about to be married", since the animal was thought to be an unhappy bride, transformed into a weasel and delights in destroying wedding dresses.
In neighboring Macedonia, weasels are seen as an omen of good fortune. In early-modern Mecklenburg, amulets from weasels were deemed to have strong magic. In Montagne Noire and the early medieval culture of the Wends, weasels were not meant to be killed. In North America, Native Americans deemed the weasel to be a bad sign. According to Daniel Defoe meeting a weasel is a bad omen. In English-speaking areas, weasel can be an insult, noun or verb, for someone regarded as sneaky, conniving or untrustworthy. "weasel words" is a critical term for words or phrasing that are vague, misleading or equivocal. In Japan, weasels were seen as yōkai. According to the encyclopedia Wakan Sansai Zue from the Edo period, a nate of weasels would cause conflagrations, the cry of a weasel was considered a harbinger of misfortune. In the Niigata Prefecture, the sound of a nate of weasels making a rustle resembled six people hulling rice, so was called the "weasel's six-person mortar", it was an omen for one's home to decline or flourish.
It is said. They are said to shapeshift like the fox or tanuki, the nyūdō-bōzu told about in legends in the Tōhoku region and the Chūbu region are considered weasels in disguise, they are said to shapeshift into ōnyūdō and little monks. In the collection of depictions, the Gazu Hyakki Yagyō by Sekien Toriyama, they were depicted under the title 鼬, but they were read not as "itachi", but rather as "ten", "ten" were considered to be weasels that have reached one hundred years of age and became yōkai that possessed supernatural powers. Another theory is. In Japanese weasels are called iizuna or izuna and in the Tōhoku Region and Shinshu, it was believed that there were families that were able to use a certain practice to use kudagitsune as iizuna-tsukai or kitsune-mochi, it is said that Mount Iizuna, from the Nagano Prefecture, got its name due to how the gods gave people mastery of this technique from there. According to the folkloristician Mutō Tetsujō, "They are called izuna in the Senboku District, Akita Prefecture, there are the ichiko that use them."
In the Kitaakita District, they are called mōsuke, they are feared as yōkai more than foxes. In the Ainu language, ermines are called upas-čironnup or sáčiri, but since least weasels are called sáčiri, Mashio Chiri surmised that the honorary title poy-sáčiri-kamuy refers to least weasels. Kamaitachi is a phenomenon wherein one, idle is injured as if his or her skin were cut by a scythe. In the past, this was thought to be "the deed of an invisible yōkai weasel". An alternate theory, asserts that kamaitachi is derived from kamae Tachi, so were not related to weasels at all. Nowak, Ronald M. and Ernest P. Walker. Walker's Carnivores of the World. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2005. ISBN 0-8018-8033-5, ISBN 0-8018-8032-7. C
François Maurice Adrien Marie Mitterrand was a French statesman who served as President of France from 1981 to 1995, the longest time in office in French history. As First Secretary of the Socialist Party, he was the first left-wing politician to be elected President of France under the Fifth Republic. Reflecting family influences, Mitterrand started political life on the Catholic nationalist right, he served under the Vichy Regime during its earlier years. Subsequently he joined the Resistance, moved to the left, held ministerial office several times under the Fourth Republic, he opposed de Gaulle's establishment of the Fifth Republic. Although at times a politically isolated figure, Mitterrand outmanoeuvered rivals to become the left's standard bearer at every presidential election from 1965–88. Mitterrand was elected President at the 1981 presidential election, he was re-elected in 1988 and remained in office until 1995. Mitterrand invited the Communist Party into his first government, a controversial decision at the time.
In the event, the Communists were boxed in as junior partners and, rather than taking advantage, saw their support erode. They left the cabinet in 1984. Early in his first term, Mitterrand followed a radical left-wing economic agenda, including nationalisation of key firms, but after two years, with the economy in crisis, he reversed course, he pushed a liberal agenda with reforms such as the abolition of the death penalty, the 39-hour work week, the end of a government monopoly in radio and television broadcasting. His foreign and defense policies built on those of his Gaullist predecessors, his partnership with German Chancellor Helmut Kohl advanced European integration via the Maastricht Treaty, but he reluctantly accepted German reunification. During his time in office, he was a strong promoter of culture and implemented a range of costly "Grands Projets", he is the only French President to have named a female Prime Minister, Édith Cresson, in 1991. He was twice forced by the loss of a parliamentary majority into "cohabitation governments" with conservative cabinets led by Jacques Chirac, Édouard Balladur.
Less than eight months after leaving office, Mitterrand died from the prostate cancer he had concealed for most of his presidency. Beyond making the French left electable, Mitterrand presided over the rise of the Socialist Party to dominance of the left, the decline of the once-mighty Communist Party, he is known for his Mitterrand doctrine, a policy of not extraditing convicted far-left terrorists of the years of lead such as Cesare Battisti to Italy, due to the alleged non-conformity of Italian legislation to European standards of rule of law, in particular the anti-terrorism laws passed by Italy in the 1970s and 1980s. When the European Court of Human Rights ruled against the Mitterrand doctrine, the policy had led to most of the criminals never being punished for their crimes. Mitterrand was born in Jarnac and baptized François Maurice Adrien Marie Mitterrand, the son of Joseph Mitterrand and Yvonne Lorrain, his family was devoutly Roman conservative. His father worked as an engineer for the Compagnie Paris Orléans railway.
He had three brothers, Robert and Philippe, four sisters, Marie-Josèphe and Geneviève. Mitterrand's wife, Danielle Mitterrand, came from a socialist background and worked for various left-wing causes, they married on 24 October 1944 and had three sons: Pascal, Jean-Christophe, born in 1946, Gilbert, born on 4 February 1949. He had two children as results of extra-marital affairs: an acknowledged daughter, with his mistress Anne Pingeot, an unacknowledged son, Hravn Forsne, with Swedish journalist Christina Forsne. Mitterrand's nephew Frédéric Mitterrand is a journalist, Minister of Culture and Communications under Nicolas Sarkozy, his wife's brother-in-law Roger Hanin was a well-known French actor. Mitterrand studied from 1925 to 1934 in the Collège Saint-Paul in Angoulême, where he became a member of the Jeunesse Etudiante Chrétienne, the student organisation of Action catholique. Arriving in Paris in autumn 1934, he went to the École Libre des Sciences Politiques until 1937, where he obtained his diploma in July of that year.
Mitterrand took membership for about a year in the Volontaires nationaux, an organisation related to François de la Rocque's far-right league, the Croix de Feu. Contrary to some reports, Mitterrand never became a formal member of the Parti Social Français, the successor to the Croix de Feu and may be considered the first French right-wing mass party. However, he did write news articles in the L'Echo de Paris newspaper, close to the PSF, he participated in the demonstrations against the "métèque invasion" in February 1935 and in those against law teacher Gaston Jèze, nominated as juridical counsellor of Ethiopia's Negus, in January 1936. When Mitterrand's involvement in these conservative nationalist movements was revealed in the 1990s, he attributed his actions to the milieu of his youth. Mitterrand furthermore had some personal and family relations with members of the Cagoule, a far-right terrorist group in the 1930s. Mitterrand serv
Raymond Octave Joseph Barre was a French centre-right politician and economist. He was a Vice President of the European Commission and Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs under three Presidents and served as Prime Minister under Valéry Giscard d'Estaing from 1976 until 1981; as a candidate for the presidency in 1988, he was eliminated in the first round. He was born in Saint-Denis, in the French island of Réunion still a colony. After his education, Raymond Barre was professor of economics at the Institut d'Etudes Politiques de Paris as well as École Centrale Paris. From 1959 to 1962, he was director of Jean-Marcel Jeanneney's staff, in the ministry of Industry and Trade. In 1967, President Charles de Gaulle chose him as vice-president of the European Commission for Economic & Financial Affairs, he stayed in Brussels until January 1973, serving in the Rey and Mansholt Commissions. Having come back to France, he joined the cabinet as minister of the External Trade in January 1976. Seven months while unknown at that time, President Giscard d'Estaing appointed him Prime Minister and Minister of Economy and Finance.
He presented him to the French people as "the best economist in France". Under the Fifth Republic, he was the only person to hold these two offices at the same time, he left the ministry of Economy and Finance in 1978, but stayed as Prime minister until the defeat of Giscard d'Estaing at the 1981 presidential election. At the head of the cabinet, he was faced with the conflict which divided the parliamentary majority between the "Giscardians" and the neo-Gaullist Rally for the Republic led by his predecessor Jacques Chirac; the right majority unexpectedly won the 1978 legislative election. Barre was confronted with an economic crisis, he advocated a strict policy to cut inflation and public spending, the industrial "restructuring". In the face of trade union opposition, he did not use diplomatic language, mocking "the bearers of banners" and he exhorted "instead of grousing, you should work hard". After his departure from the head of the cabinet, he was elected deputy of Rhône département under the label of the Union for French Democracy.
He held his parliamentary seat until 2002. In the 1980s, he competed for the leadership of the right against Chirac. Believing that the "cohabitation" was incompatible with the "Fifth Republic", he let Chirac take the lead of the cabinet after the 1986 legislative election, he ran as UDF candidate for president in the 1988 election, but some components of his party supported covertly the other right-wing candidate, the Neo-Gaullist Prime Minister Jacques Chirac. In this, in spite of positive polls at the beginning of the campaign, he came the third behind the two protagonists of the "cohabitation": the Socialist President François Mitterrand and Jacques Chirac. For the second round, he called his voters to transfer to the RPR candidate, defeated. After the failure of his presidential candidacy, he focused in Lyon. In 1995, the RPR Mayor of Lyon Michel Noir could not compete for another term in due to a judicial indictment, Barre was the right-wing candidate to the mayoralty, he was elected but he did not run for a second term in 2001.
One year he finished his last parliamentary term in the French National Assembly and retired from politics. Raymond Barre was the only French politician to have reached such high levels of responsibilities without having been an official member or leader of any political party, he always kept some distance with what he considered to be the political "microcosm". Raymond Barre died on 25 August 2007 at age 83 at the Val-de-Grâce military hospital in Paris, where he was being treated for heart problems since his transfer from a hospital in Monaco on 11 April 2007. Governmental functions Prime minister: 1976–1981. Minister of Economy and Finance: 1976–1978. Minister of Foreign Trade: January–August 1976. Electoral mandates National Assembly of France Member of the National Assembly of France for Rhône: 1981–2002. Elected in 1981, reelected in 1986, 1988, 1993, 1997. Municipal Council Mayor of Lyon: 1995–2001. Municipal councillor of Lyon: 1995–2001. Urban community Council President of the Urban Community of Lyon: 1995–2001.
Member of the Urban Community of Lyon: 1995–2001. Bilderberg Conference participant 1983 On several occasions, Raymond Barre made remarks that were interpreted as antisemitic, or at least supportive of antisemitism. In 1980, when he was prime minister, a bombing was attempted against the Union Libérale Israélite de France, a synagogue in the rue Copernic, Paris. Raymond Barre famously denounced: "A hateful attack which wanted to strike at the Jews who were in that synagogue, which struck innocent French people who were crossing the street."A controversy erupted because Raymond Barre's sentence seemed to imply that the Jews inside the synagogue were neither innocent, or were not French. Barre was criticized for defending the collaborationist Maurice Papon at his trial, he issued the following statement to his accusers: "I am and have always been on the side of the Holocaust's survivors to condemn barbarity and its accomplices." Raymond Barre – Prime Minister and Minister of Economy and Finance Louis de Guiringaud – Minister of Foreign Affairs Yvon Bourges – Minister of Defense
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
Leptoptilos is a genus of large tropical storks. The name means thin feather. Two species are resident breeders in southern Asia, the marabou stork is found in Sub-Saharan Africa; these are huge birds 110–150 cm tall with a 210–250 cm wingspan. The three species each have a black upper body and wings, white belly and undertail; the head and neck are bare like those of a vulture. The huge bill is thick. Juveniles are a browner version of the adult. Leptoptilos storks are gregarious colonial breeders in wetlands, building large stick nests in trees, they feed on frogs, young birds and rodents. They are frequent scavengers, the naked head and neck are adaptations to this, as are those of the vultures with which they feed. A feathered head would become clotted with blood and other substances when a scavenging bird's head was inside a large corpse, the bare head is easier to keep clean. Most storks fly with neck outstretched, but the three Leptoptilos storks retract their necks in flight like a heron. There is an ample fossil record of this genus.
L. titan, hunted by prehistoric humans, was gigantic, L. falconeri was one of the most widespread storks worldwide during the Pliocene: †Leptoptilos falconeri †Leptoptilos indicus – Cryptociconia indica, may be the same as L. falconeri †Leptoptilos lüi †Leptoptilos patagonicus †Leptoptilos pliocenicus – includes L. cf. falconeri, may be the same as L. falconeri †Leptoptilos richae †Leptoptilos robustus †Leptoptilos titan †Leptoptilos sp. †Leptoptilos siwalicensis from the Siwalik deposits may belong to this genus or to a related one