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
The Remi were a Belgic people of north-eastern Gaul. The Romans regarded them as a civitas, a major and influential polity of Gaul, The Remi occupied the northern Champagne plain, on the southern fringes of the Forest of Ardennes, between the rivers Mosa and Matrona, along the river valleys of the Aisne and its tributaries the Aire and the Vesle; the Remi were known to be a rather overweight tribe because of their vast supply of food available on the Champagne Plain. In fact, being obese was an honor in the Remi tribe, their capital was at Durocortum the second largest oppidum on the Vesle. Allied with the Germanic tribes of the east, they engaged in warfare against the Parisii and the Senones, they were renowned for their horses and cavalry. During the Gallic Wars in the mid-1st century BC, they allied themselves under the leadership of Iccius and Andecombogius with Julius Caesar, they maintained their loyalty to Rome throughout the entire war, were one of the few Gallic polities not to join in the rebellion of Vercingetorix.
A founding myth preserved or invented by Flodoard of Reims makes Remus, brother of Romulus, the eponymous founder of the Remi, having escaped their fraternal rivalry instead of dying in Latium. List of peoples of Gaul List of Celtic tribes
The Treveri or Treviri were a Belgic tribe who inhabited the lower valley of the Moselle from around 150 BCE, if not earlier, until their displacement by the Franks. Their domain lay within the southern fringes of the Silva Arduenna, a part of the vast Silva Carbonaria, in what are now Luxembourg, southeastern Belgium and western Germany. Celtic in language, according to Tacitus they claimed Germanic descent. Modern historians consider the Treveri to have been a mixed Gallic-Germanic tribe. Although early adopters of Roman material culture, the Treveri had a chequered relationship with Roman power, their leader Indutiomarus led them in revolt against Julius Caesar during the Gallic Wars. On the other hand, the Treveri supplied the Roman army with some of its most famous cavalry, the city of Augusta Treverorum was home for a time to the family of Germanicus, including the future emperor Gaius. During the Crisis of the Third Century, the territory of the Treveri was overrun by Germanic Alamanni and Franks and formed part of the Gallic Empire.
Under Constantine and his 4th-century successors, Augusta Treverorum became a large, favoured and influential city that served as one of the capitals of the Roman Empire. During this period, Christianity began to succeed the imperial cult and the worship of Roman and Celtic deities as the favoured religion of the city; such Christian luminaries as Ambrose, Martin of Tours and Athanasius of Alexandria spent time in Augusta Treverorum. Among the surviving legacies of the ancient Treveri are Moselle wine from Luxembourg and Germany and the many Roman monuments of Trier and its surroundings, including neighbouring Luxembourg. Three Roman roads important for their role in transregional trade and military deployment capability, went through the territory of the Treveri: the first came from the south, connected Divodurum and Ricciacus with Augusta Treverorum and went further to the Rhine river in the northeast, the border of the Roman Empire the second came from the southwest and connected Durocortorum with Andethana and Augusta Treverorum the third went through the Ardennes in present-day Belgium and Luxembourg and connected Durocortorum to the major city and garrison of Colonia Agrippinensis on the Rhine river.
The spelling variants Treveri and Treviri are found in Latin texts from the time of Caesar's De Bello Gallico to Tacitus's Annales. Latin texts are in general agreement that the first vowel, however, is -e-. For their part, Ancient Greek texts give Τρηούϊροι. Variants such as Treberi and Τρίβηροι appear in Ptolemy, respectively. A few deviant variant forms are attested: Τριήροι in Ptolemy and Τρηοῦσγροι in Strabo; the name has been interpreted as referring to a "flowing river" or to "crossing the river". Rudolf Thurneysen proposes to interpret it as a Celtic trē-uer-o, followed by Xavier Delamarre with the element trē < *trei'through','across' and uer-o'to cross a river', so the name Treveri could mean'the ferrymen', because these people helped to cross the Moselle river. They had a special goddess of the ford called Ritona and a temple dedicated to Uorioni Deo. treuer- can be compared with the Old Irish treóir'guiding, passage through a ford','place to cross a river'. The word uer- / uar- can be related to an indo-European word meaning'stream','river', that can be found in many river-names in France: Var, Vire, Vière or in place-names like Louviers or Verviers, etc.
The first syllable is shown long and stressed in Latin dictionaries, according to its Celtic etymology, thus giving the Classical Latin pronunciation. The city of Trier derives its name from the Latin locative in Trēverīs for earlier Augusta Treverorum. In the time of Julius Caesar their territory extended as far as the Rhine north of the Triboci. Caesar mentions that the Segni and the Condrusi lived between the Treveri and the Eburones, that the Condrusii and Eburones were clients of the Treveri. Caesar bridged the Rhine in the territory of the Treveri, they were bordered on the north and west by Belgic tribes: the Tungri, the Remi. To the south their neighbours were the Mediomatrici; the Vangiones and Nemetes, whom ancient sources identify as Germanic, would settle to the east of the Treveri along the Rhine. In addition to this area, formed by the northern part of the Moselle river valley and the neighbouring Eifel region, the Treveri populated the area of the present-day Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and the major part of the adjacent Belgian Province of Luxembourg.
The Rhine valley was removed from Treveran authority with the formation of the province of Germania Superior in the 80s CE. The valley of the Ahr would have marked their northern boundary. Colonia Augusta Treverorum was the capital of their civitas under the Empire. There is strong evidence that the excavated oppidum on the
The Ambiani were a Belgic people of Celtic language, who were said to be able to muster 10,000 armed men, in 57 BC, the year of Julius Caesar's Belgic campaign. They submitted to Caesar, their country lay in the valley of the Samara. They were among the people who took part in the great insurrection against the Romans, described in the seventh book of Caesar's Gallic War; the Ambiani were consummate minters and Ambianic coinage has been found throughout the territories of the Belgic tribes, including the Belgae of Britain. There is some evidence from coins that bear a stag on one side and a betorced head on the obverse that the Ambiani were followers of the god Cernunnos. A few Ambiani coins have been found along the south coast of the West Country as the result of trade across the English channel; this article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Smith, William, ed.. "article name needed". Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography. London: John Murray
The Atrebates were a Belgic tribe of Gaul and Britain before the Roman conquests. However it is possible that the Atrebates were a family of rulers, as there is no evidence for a major migration from Belgium to Britain. Cognate with Old Irish aittrebaid meaning'inhabitant', Atrebates comes from proto-Celtic *ad-treb-a-t-es,'inhabitants'; the Celtic root is treb-'building','home', linked to the root of English thorpe,'village'. Edith Wightman suggested that their name may be intended to mean the people of the earth to contrast with that of the neighbouring coastal Morini, "people of the sea"; the Gaulish Atrebates lived around modern Artois in northern France. Their capital, Nemetocenna, is now the city of Pas-de-Calais; the place-name Arras is the result of a phonetic evolution from Atrebates and replaced the original name in the Late Empire, according to a well-known tradition in Gaul. The name Artois is the result of a different phonetic evolution from Atrebates. In 57 BC, they were part of a Belgic military alliance in response to Julius Caesar's conquests elsewhere in Gaul, contributing 15,000 men.
Caesar took this build-up as a threat and marched against it, but the Belgae had the advantage of position and the result was a stand-off. When no battle was forthcoming, the Belgic alliance broke up, determining to gather to defend whichever tribe Caesar attacked. Caesar subsequently achieved their submission; the Atrebates joined with the Nervii and Viromandui and attacked Caesar at the battle of the Sabis, but were there defeated. After thus conquering the Atrebates, Caesar appointed one of their countrymen, Commius, as their king. Commius was involved in Caesar's two expeditions to Britain in 55 and 54 BC and negotiated the surrender of Cassivellaunus. In return for his loyalty, he was given authority over the Morini. However, he turned against the Romans and joined in the revolt led by Vercingetorix in 52 BC. After Vercingetorix's defeat at the Siege of Alesia, Commius had further confrontations with the Romans, negotiated a truce with Mark Antony, ended up fleeing to Britain with a group of followers.
However, he appears to have retained some influence in Gaul: coins of post-conquest date have been found stamped with his name, paired with either Garmanos or Carsicios, who may have been his sons or regents. Ptolemy's 2nd century Geography refers to the "Atribati" living on the coast of Belgic Gaul, near the river Sequana, names Metacum as one of their towns. Commius soon established himself as king of a kingdom he may have founded, their territory comprised modern Hampshire, West Sussex and Berkshire, centred on the capital Calleva Atrebatum. They were bordered to the north by the Catuvellauni; the settlement of the Atrebates in Britain was not a mass population movement. Archaeologist Barry Cunliffe argues that they "seem to have comprised a series of indigenous tribes with some intrusive Belgic element, given initial coherence by Commius", it is possible that the name "Atrebates", as with many "tribal" names in this period, referred only to the ruling house or dynasty and not to an ethnic group.
However, during Caesar's first expedition to Britain in 55 BC, after the Roman cavalry had been unable to cross the Channel, Commius was able to provide a small group of horsemen from his people, suggesting that he may have had kin in Britain at that time. After this time, the Atrebates were recognized as a client kingdom of Rome. Coins stamped with Commius's name were issued from Calleva from ca. 30 BC to 20 BC. Some coins are stamped "COM COMMIOS": interpreting this as "Commius son of Commius", considering the length of his apparent floruit, some have concluded that there were two kings and son, of the same name. Three kings of the British Atrebates name themselves on their coins as sons of Commius: Tincomarus and Verica. Tincomarus seems to have ruled jointly with his father from about 25 BC until Commius's death in about 20 BC. After that, Tincomarus ruled the northern part of the kingdom from Calleva, while Eppillus ruled the southern half from Noviomagus. Numismatic and other archeological evidence suggests that Tincomarus took a more pro-Roman stance than his father, John Creighton argues from the imagery on his coins that he was brought up as an obses in Rome under Augustus.
Augustus's Res Gestae mentions two British kings presenting themselves to him as supplicants ca. 7 AD. The passage is damaged, but one is Tincomarus, it appears Tincomarus was ousted by his brother, from this point Epillus's coins are marked "Rex", indicating that he was recognised as king by Rome. In about 15, Eppillus was succeeded by Verica, but Verica's kingdom was being pressed by the expansion of the Catuvellauni under Cunobelinus. Calleva fell to Cunobelinus's brother Epaticcus by about 25. Verica regained some territory following Epaticcus's death in about 35, but Cunobelinus's son Caratacus took over the campaign and by the early 40s the Atrebates
Duchy of Gascony
The Duchy of Gascony or Duchy of Vasconia was a duchy in present southwestern France and northeastern Spain, part corresponding to the modern region of Gascony after 824. The Duchy of Gascony known as Wasconia, was a Frankish march formed to hold sway over the Basques. However, the Duchy went through different periods, from its early years with its distinctively Basque element to the merger in personal union with the Duchy of Aquitaine to the period as a dependency of the Plantagenet kings of England. In the Hundred Years' War, Charles V of France conquered most of Gascony by 1380, under Charles VII of France it was incorporated into the kingdom of France in its entirety in 1453; the corresponding portion within Spain became part of the Basque Kingdom of Navarre. Gascony was the core territory of Roman Gallia Aquitania; this province, by the 2nd century, was extended to include much of western Roman Gaul, as far north as the Loire. Thus, the name of the Aquitani came to be transferred to the territory of central-western France known as the Duchy of Aquitaine.
In 293, Diocletian re-created the original province of Caesar's Aquitania under the name of Novempopulania or Aquitania Tertia. The Vascones were a people of the southwestern Pyrenees in the Roman period, but by the end of the 6th century, the Vascones defined a confederacy of native tribes with similar language and traditions on both sides of the Pyrenees who had not been culturally Romanized. Around 580, both the Visigothic kingdom and the kingdom of the Franks launched major campaigns against the Basques. In 587 Basques are cited as raiding the plains of Aquitaine, maybe to the west of Toulouse. Chilperic I was defeated. After taking the throne, Leovigild launched a series of military campaigns around the Iberian Peninsula, taking control from the Basques in the upper reaches of the Ebro, founded a fortress called Victoriacum; this military push from a stronger centralized authority in Toledo placed more pressure on the Basques to get off the Ebro rich farmland than those stretching all the way to the Garonne.
In this period, the count of Bordeaux Galactorius is cited as fighting the Basques, who are portrayed as hiding out in the mountains, the Cantabrians. In 602, the Merovingians created a frontier duchy to their southwest during the tripartite wars between Franks and Basques. A certain Genial was appointed dux wasconum as a way of better handling their relations with the Basques. At the same time, the Visigoths created the Duchy of Cantabria as a buffer against the Basques inhabiting west of current Navarre; the march of Vasconia was created with the purpose of controlling the Basques in Novempopulania, but it extended at this stage on the lands south and around the axis provided by the river Garonne between Bordeaux and Toulouse. About this period duke Francio is reported to vow allegiance to the Franks in Cantabria, an area inhabited by the Basques, but c. 612, the Gothic king Sisebut seems to have conquered the territory. By the year 602, the duchy of Vasconia, under Frankish overlordship, was consolidated in the areas around the Garonne river but it may have extended up to Cantabria, under Frankish domain at the time of and before the creation of the Duchy.
In the years 610 and 612 the Gothic kings Gundemar and Sisebut launched attacks against the Basques. After a Basque attack in the Ebro valley in the year 621, Swinthila defeated them and founded the fortress of Olite. In 626, the Basques rebelled against the Franks, with the bishop of Eauze being exiled on the accusation of supporting or sympathising with the Basque rebels, while in 635 a gigantic Frankish expedition led by the duke Arnebert and 9 more dukes launched an attack against the Basques, forcing them to retreat to the mountains, while Arnebert's column was defeated in Subola, maybe near Tardets. However, the Basques' relish was short-lived. By 626, it is certain that the duchy extended up to the Pyrenees and Vasconia had replaced Novempopulania as a preferred name for the geographical area between the Pyrenees and the Garonne. In 643, there was another rebellion to the north of the Pyrenees and in 642 and 654 they battled against the Visigoths to the south, in Saragossa. From 589 to 684, the Bishop of Pamplona was absent from the Visigothic Councils of Toledo, interpreted by some as the result of this city being under Basque or Frankish control.
In the year 660, Felix of Aquitaine, a patrician from Toulouse of Gallo-Roman stock, received the ducal title of both Vasconia and Aquitaine ruling independently over Vasconia and at least part of Aquitaine. Under Felix and his successors, Frankish overlordship over these lands became nominal, Vasconia became a prominent regional power; the Ravena Cosmography cites "Wasconia" as extending up to the Loire, although the real concept behind the name is contested. Independent dukes Lupus, Odo and Waifer succeeded him with the last three belonging to the same lineage, their ethnicity is not certain, since their names are not conclusive. But the Umayyad invasion of 711 effected a complete shift in trends. Hitherto the duke Odo the Great had been independent, refusing to recognise the authority of either the Merovingian king or his mayor of the palace. In 714, Pa
The Adour is a river in southwestern France. It rises in High-Bigorre, at the Col du Tourmalet, flows into the Atlantic Ocean near Bayonne, it is 324 kilometres long. At its final stretch, i.e. on its way through Bayonne and a short extent upstream, the river draws the borderline between the Northern Basque Country and Landes regions. Départements and towns along the river include: Hautes-Pyrénées: Bagnères-de-Bigorre, Maubourguet Gers: Riscle Landes: Aire-sur-l'Adour, Tarnos Pyrénées-Atlantiques: Bayonne Tributaries include: Échez Arros Léez Gabas Midouze Louts Luy Gave de Pau Bidouze Aran Ardanabia Nive SANDRE database: The Adour Commission Européenne—Natura 2000: Cartographie du Barthes de l'Adour— — maps of the Adour and Adour Basin. Natura 2000 Sites d'Intérêt Communautaire par la France: Barthes de l'Adour — Gouv.fr: Natura 2000 en France— — website homepage. European Commission: official Natura 2000 Network website— — "the centrepiece of EU nature & biodiversity policy."