The Czech Republic known by its short-form name, Czechia, is a landlocked country in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west, Austria to the south, Slovakia to the east and Poland to the northeast. The Czech Republic covers an area of 78,866 square kilometres with a temperate continental climate and oceanic climate, it is a unitary parliamentary republic, with 10.6 million inhabitants. Other major cities are Brno, Ostrava and Pilsen; the Czech Republic is a member of the European Union, NATO, the OECD, the United Nations, the OSCE, the Council of Europe. It is a developed country with an advanced, high income export-oriented social market economy based in services and innovation; the UNDP ranks the country 14th in inequality-adjusted human development. The Czech Republic is a welfare state with a "continental" European social model, a universal health care system, tuition-free university education and is ranked 14th in the Human Capital Index, it ranks as the 6th safest or most peaceful country and is one of the most non-religious countries in the world, while achieving strong performance in democratic governance.
The Czech Republic includes the historical territories of Bohemia and Czech Silesia. The Czech state was formed in the late 9th century as the Duchy of Bohemia under the Great Moravian Empire. After the fall of the Empire in 907, the centre of power transferred from Moravia to Bohemia under the Přemyslid dynasty. In 1002, the duchy was formally recognized as an Imperial State of the Holy Roman Empire along with the Kingdom of Germany, the Kingdom of Burgundy, the Kingdom of Italy, numerous other territories, becoming the Kingdom of Bohemia in 1198 and reaching its greatest territorial extent in the 14th century. Beside Bohemia itself, the King of Bohemia ruled the lands of the Bohemian Crown, holding a vote in the election of the Holy Roman Emperor. In the Hussite Wars of the 15th century driven by the Protestant Bohemian Reformation, the kingdom faced economic embargoes and defeated five consecutive crusades proclaimed by the leaders of the Catholic Church. Following the Battle of Mohács in 1526, the whole Crown of Bohemia was integrated into the Habsburg Monarchy alongside the Archduchy of Austria and the Kingdom of Hungary.
The Protestant Bohemian Revolt against the Catholic Habsburgs led to the Thirty Years' War. After the Battle of the White Mountain, the Habsburgs consolidated their rule, eradicated Protestantism and reimposed Catholicism, adopted a policy of gradual Germanization; this contributed to the anti-Habsburg sentiment. A long history of resentment of the Catholic Church followed and still continues. With the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806, the Bohemian Kingdom became part of the German Confederation 1815-1866 as part of Austrian Empire and the Czech language experienced a revival as a consequence of widespread romantic nationalism. In the 19th century, the Czech lands became the industrial powerhouse of the monarchy and were subsequently the core of the Republic of Czechoslovakia, formed in 1918 following the collapse of the Austro-Hungarian Empire after World War I. Czechoslovakia remained the only democracy in this part of Europe in the interwar period. However, the Czech part of Czechoslovakia was occupied by Germany in World War II, while the Slovak region became the Slovak Republic.
Most of the three millions of the German-speaking minority were expelled following the war. The Communist Party of Czechoslovakia won the 1946 elections and after the 1948 coup d'état, Czechoslovakia became a one-party communist state under Soviet influence. In 1968, increasing dissatisfaction with the regime culminated in a reform movement known as the Prague Spring, which ended in a Soviet-led invasion. Czechoslovakia remained occupied until the 1989 Velvet Revolution, when the communist regime collapsed and market economy was reintroduced. On 1 January 1993, Czechoslovakia peacefully dissolved, with its constituent states becoming the independent states of the Czech Republic and Slovakia; the Czech Republic joined NATO in 1999 and the EU in 2004. The traditional English name "Bohemia" derives from Latin "Boiohaemum", which means "home of the Boii"; the current English name comes from the Polish ethnonym associated with the area, which comes from the Czech word Čech. The name comes from the Slavic tribe and, according to legend, their leader Čech, who brought them to Bohemia, to settle on Říp Mountain.
The etymology of the word Čech can be traced back to the Proto-Slavic root *čel-, meaning "member of the people. The country has been traditionally divided into three lands, namely Bohemia in the west, Moravia in the east, Czech Silesia in the northeast. Known as the lands of the Bohemian Crown since the 14th century, a number of other names for the country have been used, including Czech/Bohemian lands, Bohemian Crown and the lands of the Crown of Saint Wenceslas; when the country regained its independence after the dissolution of the Austro-Hungarian empire in 1918, the new name of Czechoslovakia was coined to reflect the union of the Czech and Slovak nations within the one country. After Czechoslovakia dissolved in 1992, the Czech part lac
The Bílina rises on the slopes of the Ore Mountains in the Czech Republic, north of Chomutov. The river flows between the Czech Central Mountains and the Ore Mountains to the north-east, empties into the Elbe in Ústí nad Labem; the catchment area of the river covers an area of 1,082 km², its total length is 82.0 km. In the upper part it flows through a man-made riverbed, created when lignite mining in the area around Most started. At the same time, the former Lake Komořany was drained. A substantial part of the flow was extracted for use in chemical plants in Záluží u Litvínova; the polluted output killed all fish. The situation improved during the 1990s; the flow rate is artificially increased by redirection of water from the catchment area of the Ohře. However, the Bílina is still one of the most polluted rivers in the Czech Republic. For most of the river's length it flows through treeless countryside; the river bed is 5 to 10 metres wide regulated. The river has no major tributaries. Towns located on the river include Jirkov, Most, Bílina and Ústí nad Labem
Saxony the Free State of Saxony, is a landlocked federal state of Germany, bordering the federal states of Brandenburg, Saxony Anhalt and Bavaria, as well as the countries of Poland and the Czech Republic. Its capital is Dresden, its largest city is Leipzig. Saxony is the tenth largest of Germany's sixteen states, with an area of 18,413 square kilometres, the sixth most populous, with 4 million people; the history of the state of Saxony spans more than a millennium. It has been a medieval duchy, an electorate of the Holy Roman Empire, a kingdom, twice a republic; the area of the modern state of Saxony should not be confused with Old Saxony, the area inhabited by Saxons. Old Saxony corresponds to the modern German states of Lower Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt, the Westphalian part of North Rhine-Westphalia. Saxony is divided into 10 districts: 1. Bautzen 2. Erzgebirgskreis 3. Görlitz 4. Leipzig 5. Meißen 6. Mittelsachsen 7. Nordsachsen 8. Sächsische Schweiz-Osterzgebirge 9. Vogtlandkreis 10. Zwickau In addition, three cities have the status of an urban district: Chemnitz Dresden Leipzig Between 1990 and 2008, Saxony was divided into the three regions of Chemnitz and Leipzig.
After a reform in 2008, these regions - with some alterations of their respective areas - were called Direktionsbezirke. In 2012, the authorities of these regions were merged into one central authority, the Landesdirektion Sachsen; the Erzgebirgskreis district includes the Ore Mountains, the Sächsische Schweiz-Osterzgebirge district includes Saxon Switzerland and the Eastern Ore Mountains. There are numerous rivers in Saxony; the Elbe is the most dominant one. Oder and Neiße define the border between Poland. Other rivers include the Weiße Elster; the largest cities in Saxony according to the 31 December 2015 estimate are listed below. To this can be added that Leipzig forms a metropolitan-like region with Halle, known as Ballungsraum Leipzig/Halle; the latter city is located just across the border of Saxony-Anhalt. Leipzig shares, for an S-train system and an airport with Halle. Saxony has, after the most vibrant economy of the states of the former East Germany, its economy grew by 1.9% in 2010. Nonetheless, unemployment remains above the German average.
The eastern part of Germany, excluding Berlin, qualifies as an "Objective 1" development-region within the European Union, was eligible to receive investment subsidies up to 30% until 2013. FutureSAX, a business plan competition and entrepreneurial support organisation, has been in operation since 2002. Microchip-makers near Dresden have given the region the nickname "Silicon Saxony"; the publishing and porcelain industries of the region are well known, although their contributions to the regional economy are no longer significant. Today, the automobile industry, machinery production, services contribute to the economic development of the region. Saxony is one of the most renowned tourist destinations in Germany - the cities of Leipzig and Dresden and their surroundings. New tourist destinations are developing, notably in the lake district of Lausitz. Saxony reported an average unemployment of 6.2% in 2017. By comparison, the average in the former GDR was 6.8% and 5.5% for Germany overall. The unemployment rate stood at 5.5% in October 2018.
The Leipzig area, which until was among the regions with the highest unemployment rate, could benefit from investments by Porsche and BMW. With the VW Phaeton factory in Dresden, many parts suppliers, the automobile industry has again become one of the pillars of Saxon industry, as it was in the early 20th century. Zwickau is another major Volkswagen location. Freiberg, a former mining town, has emerged as a foremost location for solar technology. Dresden and some other regions of Saxony play a leading role in some areas of international biotechnology, such as electronic bioengineering. While these high-technology sectors do not yet offer a large number of jobs, they have stopped or reversed the brain drain, occurring until the early 2000s in many parts of Saxony. Regional universities have strengthened their positions by partnering with local industries. Unlike smaller towns and Leipzig in the past experienced significant population growth; the population of Saxony began declining around the middle of the 20th century, a process which accelerated after German reunification in 1990.
The second decade of the 21st century has seen demographic decline stabilize through immigration. In recent years the cities of Dresden and Leipzig, some towns in their hinterlands, have had population increases; the following table illustrates the population of Saxony since 1905: The average number of children per woman in Saxony was 1.49 in 2010, the highest of all German states. In 2016, the value reached 1.59. Within Saxony, the highest is the Bautzen district with 1.77, while Leipzig is the lowest with 1.49. Dresden's birth rate of 1.58 is the highest of all German cities with more than 500,000 inhabitants. Births from January–September 2016 = 28,714 Births from January–September 2017 = 28,129 Deaths from January–September 2016 = 39,386 Deaths from January–September 2017 = 41,284 Natural growth from January–September 2016 = -10,672 Natural growth from January–September 2017 = -13,155 Saxony has a long history as a duchy, an electorate of the Holy
Johann Gottfried Seume
Johann Gottfried Seume was a German author. Seume was born in Poserna, he was educated first at Borna at the Nikolai school and University of Leipzig. The study of Shaftesbury and Bolingbroke wakened his interest in theology, breaking off his studies, he set out for Paris. On the way he was seized by Hessian recruiting officers and sold to England, whereupon he was drafted to Canada. After his return in 1783 he was captured and brought to Emden. In 1787, however, a citizen of Emden became surety for him to the amount of 80 talers, he was allowed to visit his home, he did not return, but paid off his debt in Emden with the remuneration he received for translating an English novel. He taught languages for a time in Leipzig, became tutor to a Graf Igelstrom, whom, in 1792, he accompanied to Warsaw. Here he became secretary to General von Igelstrom, and, as a Russian officer, experienced the terrors of the Polish insurrection. In 1796 he was again in Leipzig and, resigning his Russian commission, entered the employment of the publisher Göschen.
In December 1801, he set out on his famous nine months' walk to Sicily, described in his Spaziergang nach Syrakus. Some years he visited Russia, Finland and Denmark, a journey, described in Mein Sommer im Jahr 1805, his health now began to fail, he died on 13 June 1810, in Teplitz. His reputation rests on the two books just mentioned, to which may be added his autobiography, Mein Leben; these works reflect sturdy patriotism. As a dramatist, as a lyric poet, he had but little success. Seume's Gesammelte Schriften were first edited by J. P. Zimmermann; the most recent edition is J. G. Seume's Prosaische und poetische Werke. See Oskar Planer and Camillo Reißmann, J. G. Seume. Geschichte seines Lebens und seiner Schriften. Seume died in Teplitz in June 1810. Ludwig van Beethoven spent three weeks in August 1811 and another short period during the summer of 1812 at Teplitz, he is known to have visited Seume's grave, wrote to a music teacher from Cassel, Georg Christoph Grosheim, telling him of the feelings of admiration for Seume that that occasion had produced in him.
In his letter to Beethoven of 10 November 1819, Grosheim talks of a "marriage" of Seume's poem "Die Beterin" with Beethoven's "Moonlight" Sonata. It is unclear whether this was a reference to an idea, discussed between the two men, or a new idea of Grosheim's. Thayer reports that Grosheim had tried to persuade Beethoven to arrange the slow opening movement of the "Moonlight" Sonata for voice and piano, to the words of Seume's poem Die Beterin. Beethoven is said to have agreed to the idea, but nothing came of it. In the minds of some writers the association between "Die Beterin" and the sonata came to assume more solidity than it had in reality. "Die Beterin" was sometimes said to be a painting. In the 1954 edition of Grove's Dictionary of Music, it is denied that the "Moonlight" Sonata has any connection with "a picture, Die Beterin". Beethoven had two volumes of Seume's works in his possession; this article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed.. "Seume, Johann Gottfried".
Encyclopædia Britannica. 24. Cambridge University Press. P. 707. Works by Johann Gottfried Seume at Project Gutenberg Works by or about Johann Gottfried Seume at Internet Archive
Thirty Years' War
The Thirty Years' War was a war fought in Central Europe between 1618 and 1648. One of the most destructive conflicts in human history, it resulted in eight million fatalities not only from military engagements but from violence and plague. Casualties were overwhelmingly and disproportionately inhabitants of the Holy Roman Empire, most of the rest being battle deaths from various foreign armies. In terms of proportional German casualties and destruction, it was surpassed only by the period January to May 1945. A war between various Protestant and Catholic states in the fragmented Holy Roman Empire, it developed into a more general conflict involving most of the European great powers; these states employed large mercenary armies, the war became less about religion and more of a continuation of the France–Habsburg rivalry for European political pre-eminence. The war was preceded by the election of the new Holy Roman Emperor, Ferdinand II, who tried to impose religious uniformity on his domains, forcing Roman Catholicism on its peoples.
The northern Protestant states, angered by the violation of their rights to choose, granted in the Peace of Augsburg, banded together to form the Protestant Union. Ferdinand II was a devout Roman Catholic and much more intolerant than his predecessor, Rudolf II, who ruled from the Protestant city of Prague. Ferdinand's policies were considered pro-Catholic and anti-Protestant; these events caused widespread fears throughout northern and central Europe, triggered the Protestant Bohemians living in the relatively loose dominion of Habsburg Austria to revolt against their nominal ruler, Ferdinand II. After the so-called Defenestration of Prague deposed the Emperor's representatives in Prague, the Protestant estates and Catholic Habsburgs started gathering allies for war; the Protestant Bohemians ousted the Habsburgs and elected the Calvinist Frederick V, Elector of the Rhenish Palatinate as the new king of the Kingdom of Bohemia. Frederick took the offer without the support of the Protestant Union.
The southern states Roman Catholic, were angered by this. Led by Bavaria, these states formed the Catholic League to expel Frederick in support of the Emperor; the Empire soon crushed the perceived Protestant rebellion in the Battle of White Mountain, executing leading Bohemian aristocrats shortly after. Protestant rulers across Europe unanimously condemned the Emperor's action. After the atrocities committed in Bohemia, Saxony gave its support to the Protestant Union and decided to fight back. Sweden, at the time a rising military power, soon intervened in 1630 under its king Gustavus Adolphus, transforming what had been the Emperor's attempt to curb the Protestant states into a full-scale war in Europe. Habsburg Spain, wishing to crush the Dutch rebels in the Netherlands and the Dutch Republic, intervened under the pretext of helping its dynastic Habsburg ally, Austria. No longer able to tolerate the encirclement of two major Habsburg powers on its borders, Catholic France entered the coalition on the side of the Protestants in order to counter the Habsburgs.
The Thirty Years' War devastated entire regions, resulting in high mortality among the populations of the German and Italian states, the Crown of Bohemia, the Southern Netherlands. Both mercenaries and soldiers in fighting armies traditionally looted or extorted tribute to get operating funds, which imposed severe hardships on the inhabitants of occupied territories; the war bankrupted most of the combatant powers. The Dutch Republic enjoyed contrasting fortune; the Thirty Years' War ended with the Treaty of Osnabrück and the Treaties of Münster, part of the wider Peace of Westphalia. The war altered the previous political order of European powers; the rise of Bourbon France, the curtailing of Habsburg ambition, the ascendancy of Sweden as a great power created a new balance of power on the continent, with France emerging from the war strengthened and dominant in the latter part of the 17th century. The Peace of Augsburg, signed by Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, confirmed the result of the Diet of Speyer, ending the war between German Lutherans and Catholics, establishing that: Rulers of the 224 German states could choose the religion of their realms.
Subjects had to follow that emigrate. Prince-bishoprics and other states ruled by Catholic clergy were excluded and should remain Catholic. Prince-bishops who converted to Lutheranism were required to give up their territories. Lutherans could keep the territory they had taken from the Catholic Church since the Peace of Passau in 1552. Although the Peace of Augsburg created a temporary end to hostilities, it did not resolve the underlying religious conflict, made yet more complex by the spread of Calvinism throughout Germany in the years that followed; this added a third major faith to the region, but its position was not recognized in any way by the Augsburg terms, to which only Catholicism and Lutheranism were parties. The rulers of the nations neighboring the Holy Roman Empir
North Bohemia, is a region in the north of the Czech Republic. North Bohemia covers the present-day NUTS regional unit of CZ04 Severozápad and the western part of CZ05 Severovýchod. From an administrative perspective, North Bohemia is made up of the present day Ústí nad Labem Region, Karlovy Vary Region and Liberec Region. In German language usage the term Nordböhmen refers to that part of the Sudetenland once populated by Germans in North Bohemia between Karlovy Vary in the west and the Krkonoše in the east. North Bohemia is divided into many landscape areas including the Ore Mountains, the Bohemian Switzerland national park, Mácha’s Country, the Lusatian Mountains and Ještěd Ridge, Frýdlantsko and the Jizera Mountains, it is a popular tourist destination, much of, inaccessible until recently. The Jizera and Lusatian Mountains are protected landscape areas; the summits of the Jizera Mountains climb to heights of about 1,000 metres above sea level, the region’s peat bogs have been opened up with interconnecting educational trails.
The national nature reserve of the Jizera Mountain Beechwood Forest contains the largest beech woodland in the Czech Republic, covering 27 square kilometres. Major cities and towns in North Bohemia include Česká Lípa, Děčín, Jablonec nad Nisou, Litoměřice and Teplice. In the administrative system of the former Czechoslovakia there was a North Bohemia province from 1960-1990 that consisted of the present-day region of Ústí nad Labem and parts of Liberecký kraj. Bohemia Central Bohemian Uplands North Bohemian Basin