Glacial landforms are landforms created by the action of glaciers. Most of today's glacial landforms were created by the movement of large ice sheets during the Quaternary glaciations; some areas, like Fennoscandia and the southern Andes, have extensive occurrences of glacial landforms. As the glaciers expand, due to their accumulating weight of snow and ice they crush and abrade scour surfaces rocks and bedrock; the resulting erosional landforms include striations, glacial horns, arêtes, trim lines, U-shaped valleys, roches moutonnées, overdeepenings and hanging valleys. Cirque: Starting location for mountain glaciers Cirque stairway: a sequence of cirques U-shaped or trough valley: U-shaped valleys are created by mountain glaciers; when filled with ocean water so as to create an inlet, these valleys are called fjords. Arête: spiky high land between two glaciers, if the glacial action erodes through, a spillway forms. Valley step: an abrupt change in the longitudinal slope of a glacial valley Later, when the glaciers retreated leaving behind their freight of crushed rock and sand, they created characteristic depositional landforms.
Examples include glacial moraines and kames. Drumlins and ribbed moraines are landforms left behind by retreating glaciers; the stone walls of New England contain many glacial erratics, rocks that were dragged by a glacier many miles from their bedrock origin. Esker: Built up bed of a subglacial stream. Kame: Irregularly shaped mound. Moraine: Feature can be terminal, lateral, or medial. Outwash fan: Braided stream flowing from the front end of a glacier. Lakes and ponds may be caused by glacial movement. Kettle lakes form when a retreating glacier leaves behind an underground or surface chunk of ice that melts to form a depression containing water. Moraine-dammed lakes occur. Jackson Lake and Jenny Lake in Grand Teton National Park are examples of moraine-dammed lakes, though Jackson Lake is enhanced by a man-made dam. Kettle lake: Depression, formed by a block of ice separated from the main glacier, in which the lake forms. Tarn: A lake formed in a cirque by overdeepening. Paternoster lake: A series of lakes in a glacial valley, formed when a stream is dammed by successive recessional moraines left by an advancing or retreating glacier.
Glacial lake: A lake that formed between the front of a glacier and the last recessional moraine. Apart from the landforms left behind by glaciers, glaciers themselves may be striking features of the terrain in the polar regions of the earth. Notable examples include valley glaciers where glacial flow is restricted by the valley walls, crevasses in the upper section of glacial ice, icefalls—the ice equivalent of waterfalls; the glacial origin of some landforms has been questioned. Erling Lindström has advanced the thesis that rôches moutonnées may not be glacial landforms taking most of their shape before glaciation. Jointing that contribute to the shape predate glaciation and rôches moutonnee-like forms can be found in tropical areas such as East Africa and Australia. Further at Ivö Klack in Sweden weathered rock surfaces exposed by kaolin mining resemble rôches moutonnée; the idea of elevated flat surfaces being shaped by glaciation —the glacial buzzsaw effect— has been rejected by various scholars.
In the case of Norway the elevated paleic surface has been proposed to have been shaped by the glacial buzzsaw effect. However this proposal is difficult to reconcile with the fact that the paleic surface consist of a series of steps at different levels. Further glacial cirques, that in the buzzsaw hypothesis contribute to belevel the landscape, are not associated to any paleosurface levels of the composite paleic surface, nor does the modern ELA or the Last Glacial Maximum ELA match any given level of the paleic surface; the elevated plains of West Greenland are unrelated to any glacial buzzsaw effect. The Gulf of Bothnia and Hudson Bay, two large depressions at the centre of former ice sheets, are known to be more the result of tectonics than of any weak glacial erosion. Glacial series Nunatak – Exposed rocky element of a ridge, mountain, or peak not covered with ice or snow within an ice field or glacier Pyramidal peak – Angular pointed mountain peak Illustrated glossary of alpine glacial landforms Landforms of glaciation Diagram illustrating mechanisms of glacial landforms in The Ice Melts: Deposition on page 6 of "Pennsylvania and the Ice Age" published 1999 by PA DCNR Bureau of Topographic and Geologic Survey
The United States of America known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U. S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D. C. and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico; the State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean; the U. S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The diverse geography and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.
Paleo-Indians migrated from Siberia to the North American mainland at least 12,000 years ago. European colonization began in the 16th century; the United States emerged from the thirteen British colonies established along the East Coast. Numerous disputes between Great Britain and the colonies following the French and Indian War led to the American Revolution, which began in 1775, the subsequent Declaration of Independence in 1776; the war ended in 1783 with the United States becoming the first country to gain independence from a European power. The current constitution was adopted in 1788, with the first ten amendments, collectively named the Bill of Rights, being ratified in 1791 to guarantee many fundamental civil liberties; the United States embarked on a vigorous expansion across North America throughout the 19th century, acquiring new territories, displacing Native American tribes, admitting new states until it spanned the continent by 1848. During the second half of the 19th century, the Civil War led to the abolition of slavery.
By the end of the century, the United States had extended into the Pacific Ocean, its economy, driven in large part by the Industrial Revolution, began to soar. The Spanish–American War and World War I confirmed the country's status as a global military power; the United States emerged from World War II as a global superpower, the first country to develop nuclear weapons, the only country to use them in warfare, a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. Sweeping civil rights legislation, notably the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Fair Housing Act of 1968, outlawed discrimination based on race or color. During the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union competed in the Space Race, culminating with the 1969 U. S. Moon landing; the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 left the United States as the world's sole superpower. The United States is the world's oldest surviving federation, it is a representative democracy.
The United States is a founding member of the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Organization of American States, other international organizations. The United States is a developed country, with the world's largest economy by nominal GDP and second-largest economy by PPP, accounting for a quarter of global GDP; the U. S. economy is post-industrial, characterized by the dominance of services and knowledge-based activities, although the manufacturing sector remains the second-largest in the world. The United States is the world's largest importer and the second largest exporter of goods, by value. Although its population is only 4.3% of the world total, the U. S. holds 31% of the total wealth in the world, the largest share of global wealth concentrated in a single country. Despite wide income and wealth disparities, the United States continues to rank high in measures of socioeconomic performance, including average wage, human development, per capita GDP, worker productivity.
The United States is the foremost military power in the world, making up a third of global military spending, is a leading political and scientific force internationally. In 1507, the German cartographer Martin Waldseemüller produced a world map on which he named the lands of the Western Hemisphere America in honor of the Italian explorer and cartographer Amerigo Vespucci; the first documentary evidence of the phrase "United States of America" is from a letter dated January 2, 1776, written by Stephen Moylan, Esq. to George Washington's aide-de-camp and Muster-Master General of the Continental Army, Lt. Col. Joseph Reed. Moylan expressed his wish to go "with full and ample powers from the United States of America to Spain" to seek assistance in the revolutionary war effort; the first known publication of the phrase "United States of America" was in an anonymous essay in The Virginia Gazette newspaper in Williamsburg, Virginia, on April 6, 1776. The second draft of the Articles of Confederation, prepared by John Dickinson and completed by June 17, 1776, at the latest, declared "The name of this Confederation shall be the'United States of America'".
The final version of the Articles sent to the states for ratification in late 1777 contains the sentence "The Stile of this Confederacy shall be'The United States of America'". In June 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote the phrase "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" in all capitalized letters in the headline of his "original Rough draught" of the Declaration of Independence; this draft of the document did not surface unti
Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic to the Pacific and northward into the Arctic Ocean, covering 9.98 million square kilometres, making it the world's second-largest country by total area. Canada's southern border with the United States is the world's longest bi-national land border, its capital is Ottawa, its three largest metropolitan areas are Toronto and Vancouver. As a whole, Canada is sparsely populated, the majority of its land area being dominated by forest and tundra, its population is urbanized, with over 80 percent of its inhabitants concentrated in large and medium-sized cities, many near the southern border. Canada's climate varies across its vast area, ranging from arctic weather in the north, to hot summers in the southern regions, with four distinct seasons. Various indigenous peoples have inhabited what is now Canada for thousands of years prior to European colonization. Beginning in the 16th century and French expeditions explored, settled, along the Atlantic coast.
As a consequence of various armed conflicts, France ceded nearly all of its colonies in North America in 1763. In 1867, with the union of three British North American colonies through Confederation, Canada was formed as a federal dominion of four provinces; this began an accretion of provinces and territories and a process of increasing autonomy from the United Kingdom. This widening autonomy was highlighted by the Statute of Westminster of 1931 and culminated in the Canada Act of 1982, which severed the vestiges of legal dependence on the British parliament. Canada is a parliamentary democracy and a constitutional monarchy in the Westminster tradition, with Elizabeth II as its queen and a prime minister who serves as the chair of the federal cabinet and head of government; the country is a realm within the Commonwealth of Nations, a member of the Francophonie and bilingual at the federal level. It ranks among the highest in international measurements of government transparency, civil liberties, quality of life, economic freedom, education.
It is one of the world's most ethnically diverse and multicultural nations, the product of large-scale immigration from many other countries. Canada's long and complex relationship with the United States has had a significant impact on its economy and culture. A developed country, Canada has the sixteenth-highest nominal per capita income globally as well as the twelfth-highest ranking in the Human Development Index, its advanced economy is the tenth-largest in the world, relying chiefly upon its abundant natural resources and well-developed international trade networks. Canada is part of several major international and intergovernmental institutions or groupings including the United Nations, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the G7, the Group of Ten, the G20, the North American Free Trade Agreement and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum. While a variety of theories have been postulated for the etymological origins of Canada, the name is now accepted as coming from the St. Lawrence Iroquoian word kanata, meaning "village" or "settlement".
In 1535, indigenous inhabitants of the present-day Quebec City region used the word to direct French explorer Jacques Cartier to the village of Stadacona. Cartier used the word Canada to refer not only to that particular village but to the entire area subject to Donnacona. From the 16th to the early 18th century "Canada" referred to the part of New France that lay along the Saint Lawrence River. In 1791, the area became two British colonies called Upper Canada and Lower Canada collectively named the Canadas. Upon Confederation in 1867, Canada was adopted as the legal name for the new country at the London Conference, the word Dominion was conferred as the country's title. By the 1950s, the term Dominion of Canada was no longer used by the United Kingdom, which considered Canada a "Realm of the Commonwealth"; the government of Louis St. Laurent ended the practice of using'Dominion' in the Statutes of Canada in 1951. In 1982, the passage of the Canada Act, bringing the Constitution of Canada under Canadian control, referred only to Canada, that year the name of the national holiday was changed from Dominion Day to Canada Day.
The term Dominion was used to distinguish the federal government from the provinces, though after the Second World War the term federal had replaced dominion. Indigenous peoples in present-day Canada include the First Nations, Métis, the last being a mixed-blood people who originated in the mid-17th century when First Nations and Inuit people married European settlers; the term "Aboriginal" as a collective noun is a specific term of art used in some legal documents, including the Constitution Act 1982. The first inhabitants of North America are hypothesized to have migrated from Siberia by way of the Bering land bridge and arrived at least 14,000 years ago; the Paleo-Indian archeological sites at Old Crow Flats and Bluefish Caves are two of the oldest sites of human habitation in Canada. The characteristics of Canadian indigenous societies included permanent settlements, complex societal hierarchies, trading networks; some of these cultures had collapsed by the time European explorers arrived in the late 15th and early 16th centuries and have only been discovered through archeological investigations.
The indigenous population at the time of the first European settlements is estimated to have been between 200,000
Franz Josef Glacier
Franz Josef Glacier / Kā Roimata o Hine Hukatere is a 12 km long temperate maritime glacier located in Westland Tai Poutini National Park on the West Coast of New Zealand's South Island. Together with the Fox Glacier 20 km to the south, a third glacier, it descends from the Southern Alps to less than 300 metres above sea level; the area surrounding the two glaciers is part of a World Heritage Site park. The river emerging from the glacier terminal of Franz Josef is known as the Waiho River; the first European description of one of the west coast glaciers was made in the log of the ship Mary Louisa in 1859. The glacier was named after Emperor Franz Joseph I of Austria by the German explorer, Julius von Haast in 1865; the Māori name for the glacier is Kā Roimata o Hine Hukatere, arising from a local legend: Hine Hukatere loved climbing in the mountains and persuaded her lover, Wawe, to climb with her. Wawe was a less experienced climber than Hine Hukatere but loved to accompany her until an avalanche swept Wawe from the peaks to his death.
Hine Hukatere was broken-hearted and her many, many tears flowed down the mountain and froze to form the glacier. Following the passage of the Ngai Tahu Claims Settlement Act 1998, the name of the glacier was altered to Franz Josef Glacier / Kā Roimata o Hine Hukatere. Franz Josef Glacier is 12 km long and terminates 19 km from the Tasman Sea. Fed by a 20-square-kilometre large snowfield at high altitude, it exhibits a cyclic pattern of advance and retreat, driven by differences between the volume of meltwater at the foot of the glacier and volume of snowfall feeding the névé. Franz Josef Glacier had periods of advances from 1946 to 1951, 1965–1967, 1983–1999 and 2004–2008; the glacier advanced during the Little Ice Age, reaching a maximum in the early eighteenth century. Having retreated several kilometres between the 1940s and 1980s, the glacier entered an advancing phase in 1984 and at times has advanced at the phenomenal rate of 70 cm a day; the flow rate is about 10 times that of typical glaciers.
Over the longer term, the glacier has retreated since the last ice age, it is believed that it extended into the sea some 10,000 to 15,000 years ago. This cyclic behaviour is well illustrated by a postage stamp issued in 1946, depicting the view from St James Anglican Church; the church was built with a panoramic altar window to take advantage of its location. By 1954, the glacier had disappeared from view from the church, but it reappeared in 1997; this is due to the variable conditions on the snowfield, which take around 5–6 years before they result in changes in the terminus location. The glacier was still advancing until 2008, but since it has entered a rapid phase of retreat; as is the case for most other New Zealand glaciers which are found on the eastern side of the southern alps, the shrinking process is attributed to global warming. There have been some incidents of jökulhlaups at the glacier, with one destroying a bridge on the access route in 1989. Based on past variations, scientists expect that Franz Josef Glacier will retreat 5 km and lose 38% of its mass by 2100 in a mid-range scenario of warming.
The Waiho Loop is the terminal moraine of the glacier, indicates the extent of the Franz Josef Glacier, about 12,000 years ago. Too rugged to be cleared for farming it remains covered in native forest; the glacier area is one of the main tourist attractions of the West Coast, with around 250,000 visitors a year, up to 2,700 per day. Guided and unguided walks up to and onto the glacier are possible. However, since April 2012 all glacier walks require a helicopter flight past the unstable terminal face. Glacier walks require some specialised equipment, namely ice axes and crampons that latch onto a sturdy boot; these are provided by tour companies. As the walking part of any tour up to the glacier takes a long time, ends at the first icefall, many tourists book helicopter tours from one of the several local airlines, which drop their guests between the first and second icefalls, for a guided 1–2 hour walk through the broken ground atop the glacier. Although the glacial landscape changes daily, given the glacier's unusually fast flow, some walks including passages through ice tunnels, they are still considered quite safe and only somewhat strenuous.
In June 2010, an Australian tourist died of a heart attack during a guided hike of the glacier. At the entrance of the valley lies the village of Franz Josef, which has a permanent population of 330 residents, it is situated 5 km from the glacier on State Highway 6 and has a petrol station, small but busy heliport, numerous tourist accommodation options and a number of restaurants and shops. Just south of the village, a sealed road leads from the highway into the Franz Josef Glacier valley and to a car park. Several small walks start from the Valley Road and the car park, it is possible to comfortably cycle from Franz Josef township to the car park; as of 2015, the valley walk ends at a lookout about 50 m from the main terminal face of the glacier. Since around 2012 the terminal face has become too dangerous to approach, signs warn against crossing the safety barriers at the lookout. An alternative option to view the glacier is via the 8 hour day hike up the 1,303 metres high Alex Knob, overlooking the Franz Josef Glacier and valley below.
The path up Alex Knob is of good trampi
Canton of Grisons
The canton of Grisons, or canton of Graubünden, is the largest and easternmost canton of Switzerland. It has international borders with Italy and Liechtenstein, its German name, Graubünden, translates as the "Grey Leagues", referring to the canton's origin in three local alliances, the League of God's House, the Grey League, the League of the Ten Jurisdictions. Grisons is home to three of Switzerland's ethnic groups, whose spoken languages—Swiss German and Romansh—are all native to the canton, it is the only trilingual canton and the only canton where the Romansh language has official status. Grisons is Switzerland's largest canton by area at 7,105.2 square kilometres, 19.2% larger than the Canton of Bern. Only about a third of this is regarded as productive land of which forests cover about a fifth of the total area; the canton is mountainous, comprising the highlands of the Rhine and Inn river valleys. In its southeastern part lies the only official Swiss National Park. In its northern part the mountains were formed as part of the thrust fault, in 2008 declared a geologic UNESCO World Heritage Site, under the name Swiss Tectonic Arena Sardona.
Another Biosphere Reserve is the Biosfera Val Müstair adjacent to the Swiss National Park, while Ela Nature Park is one of the regionally supported parks. Elevations in the Grison Alps include Tödi, at 3,614 metres, the highest peak, Piz Bernina, at 4,049 metres. Many of the mountain ranges feature extensive glaciers, such as at the Adula, the Albula, the Silvretta, the Bernina, the Bregaglia and the Rätikon ranges; the mountain ranges in the central area are steep, having some of the deepest valleys in Europe. These valleys were settled by the Raetians. Grisons borders on the cantons of St. Gallen to the north, Glarus to the north-west, Uri to the west, Ticino to the south-west; the capital city is Chur. The world-famous resorts of St. Moritz and Davos-Klosters are located in the canton, complemented by the larger all-year-round tourist destinations of Arosa, Lenzerheide, Scuol-Sammnaun and more; the inhabitants of Grisons are called Grisonians. Most of the lands of the canton were once part of a Roman province called Raetia, established in 15 BC.
The current capital of Grisons, was known as Curia in Roman times. The area was part of the lands of the diocese of Chur. In 1367 the League of God's House was founded to resist the rising power of the Bishop of Chur; this was followed by the establishment of the Grey League, sometimes called Oberbund, in 1395 in the Upper Rhine valley. The name Grey League is derived from the homespun grey clothes worn by the people and was used after 16 March 1424; the name of this league gave its name to the canton of Grisons. A third league was established in 1436 by the people of ten bailiwicks in the former Toggenburg countship, as the dynasty of Toggenburg had become extinct; the league was called League of the Ten Jurisdictions. The first step towards the canton of Grisons was when the league of the Ten Jurisdictions allied with the League of God's House in 1450. In 1471 the two leagues allied with the Grey League. In 1497 and 1498 the Leagues allied with the Old Swiss Confederacy after the Habsburgs acquired the possessions of the extinct Toggenburg dynasty in 1496, siding with the Confederacy in the Swabian War three years later.
The Habsburgs were defeated at Calven Gorge and Dornach, helping the Swiss Confederation and the allied leagues of the canton of Grisons to be recognised. However the Three Leagues remained a loose association until the Bundesbrief of 23 September 1524; the last traces of the Bishop of Chur's jurisdiction were abolished in 1526. The Musso war of 1520 drove the Three Leagues closer to the Swiss Confederacy. Between 1618 and 1639 it became a battleground between competing factions during the Bündner Wirren; the Protestant party was supported by France and Venice, while the Catholic party was supported by the Habsburgs in Spain and Austria. Each side sought to gain control of the Grisons to gain control over the important alpine passes. In 1618, the young radical Jörg Jenatsch became a member of the court of'clerical overseers' and a leader of the anti-Habsburg faction, he supervised the torture to death of the arch-priest Nicola Rusca of Sondrio. In response, Giacomo Robustelli of the pro-Catholic Planta family, raised an army of rebels in the Valtellina.
On the evening of 18/19 July 1620, a force of Valtellina rebels supported by Austrian and Italian troops marched into Tirano and began killing Protestants. When they finished in Tirano, they marched to Teglio and further down the valley killing every Protestant that they found. Between 500 and 600 people were killed in the following four days; the attack drove nearly all the Protestants out of the valley, prevented further Protestant incursions and took the Valtellina out of the Three Leagues. In response, in February 1621, Jenatsch led a force of anti-Habsburg troops to attack Rietberg Castle, the home of a leader of the pro-Catholic faction, Pompeius Planta, they surprised Planta and according to legend he was killed by Jörg Jenatsch with an axe. The murder of Planta encouraged the Protestant faction and they assembled a poorly led and disorganized army to retake the Valtellina and other subject lands. However, the army fell apart; this Protestant invasion provided the Austrians an excuse to invade the Leagues.
By the end of October and Austria had occupied all of Grisons. The resulting peace treaty of January 1622, forced Grisons to cede the Müstair, the Lower Engadine
Norway the Kingdom of Norway, is a Nordic country in Northern Europe whose territory comprises the western and northernmost portion of the Scandinavian Peninsula. The Antarctic Peter I Island and the sub-Antarctic Bouvet Island are dependent territories and thus not considered part of the kingdom. Norway lays claim to a section of Antarctica known as Queen Maud Land. Norway has a total area of 385,207 square kilometres and a population of 5,312,300; the country shares a long eastern border with Sweden. Norway is bordered by Finland and Russia to the north-east, the Skagerrak strait to the south, with Denmark on the other side. Norway has an extensive coastline, facing the Barents Sea. Harald V of the House of Glücksburg is the current King of Norway. Erna Solberg has been prime minister since 2013. A unitary sovereign state with a constitutional monarchy, Norway divides state power between the parliament, the cabinet and the supreme court, as determined by the 1814 constitution; the kingdom was established in 872 as a merger of a large number of petty kingdoms and has existed continuously for 1,147 years.
From 1537 to 1814, Norway was a part of the Kingdom of Denmark-Norway, from 1814 to 1905, it was in a personal union with the Kingdom of Sweden. Norway was neutral during the First World War. Norway remained neutral until April 1940 when the country was invaded and occupied by Germany until the end of Second World War. Norway has both administrative and political subdivisions on two levels: counties and municipalities; the Sámi people have a certain amount of self-determination and influence over traditional territories through the Sámi Parliament and the Finnmark Act. Norway maintains close ties with both the United States. Norway is a founding member of the United Nations, NATO, the European Free Trade Association, the Council of Europe, the Antarctic Treaty, the Nordic Council. Norway maintains the Nordic welfare model with universal health care and a comprehensive social security system, its values are rooted in egalitarian ideals; the Norwegian state has large ownership positions in key industrial sectors, having extensive reserves of petroleum, natural gas, lumber and fresh water.
The petroleum industry accounts for around a quarter of the country's gross domestic product. On a per-capita basis, Norway is the world's largest producer of oil and natural gas outside of the Middle East; the country has the fourth-highest per capita income in the world on the World IMF lists. On the CIA's GDP per capita list which includes autonomous territories and regions, Norway ranks as number eleven, it has the world's largest sovereign wealth fund, with a value of US$1 trillion. Norway has had the highest Human Development Index ranking in the world since 2009, a position held between 2001 and 2006, it had the highest inequality-adjusted ranking until 2018 when Iceland moved to the top of the list. Norway ranked first on the World Happiness Report for 2017 and ranks first on the OECD Better Life Index, the Index of Public Integrity, the Democracy Index. Norway has one of the lowest crime rates in the world. Norway has two official names: Norge in Noreg in Nynorsk; the English name Norway comes from the Old English word Norþweg mentioned in 880, meaning "northern way" or "way leading to the north", how the Anglo-Saxons referred to the coastline of Atlantic Norway similar to scientific consensus about the origin of the Norwegian language name.
The Anglo-Saxons of Britain referred to the kingdom of Norway in 880 as Norðmanna land. There is some disagreement about whether the native name of Norway had the same etymology as the English form. According to the traditional dominant view, the first component was norðr, a cognate of English north, so the full name was Norðr vegr, "the way northwards", referring to the sailing route along the Norwegian coast, contrasting with suðrvegar "southern way" for, austrvegr "eastern way" for the Baltic. In the translation of Orosius for Alfred, the name is Norðweg, while in younger Old English sources the ð is gone. In the 10th century many Norsemen settled in Northern France, according to the sagas, in the area, called Normandy from norðmann, although not a Norwegian possession. In France normanni or northmanni referred to people of Sweden or Denmark; until around 1800 inhabitants of Western Norway where referred to as nordmenn while inhabitants of Eastern Norway where referred to as austmenn. According to another theory, the first component was a word nór, meaning "narrow" or "northern", referring to the inner-archipelago sailing route through the land.
The interpretation as "northern", as reflected in the English and Latin forms of the name, would have been due to folk etymology. This latter view originated with philologist Niels Halvorsen Trønnes in 1847; the form Nore is still used in placenames such as the village of Nore and lake Norefjorden in Buskerud county, still has the same meaning. Among other arguments in favour of the theor
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