A university is an institution of higher education and research which awards academic degrees in various academic disciplines. Universities provide undergraduate education and postgraduate education; the word university is derived from the Latin universitas magistrorum et scholarium, which means "community of teachers and scholars". While antecedents had existed in Asia and Africa, the modern university system has roots in the European medieval university, created in Italy and evolved from cathedral schools for the clergy during the High Middle Ages; the original Latin word universitas refers in general to "a number of persons associated into one body, a society, community, corporation, etc". At the time of the emergence of urban town life and medieval guilds, specialized "associations of students and teachers with collective legal rights guaranteed by charters issued by princes, prelates, or the towns in which they were located" came to be denominated by this general term. Like other guilds, they were self-regulating and determined the qualifications of their members.
In modern usage the word has come to mean "An institution of higher education offering tuition in non-vocational subjects and having the power to confer degrees," with the earlier emphasis on its corporate organization considered as applying to Medieval universities. The original Latin word referred to degree-awarding institutions of learning in Western and Central Europe, where this form of legal organisation was prevalent, from where the institution spread around the world. An important idea in the definition of a university is the notion of academic freedom; the first documentary evidence of this comes from early in the life of the University of Bologna, which adopted an academic charter, the Constitutio Habita, in 1158 or 1155, which guaranteed the right of a traveling scholar to unhindered passage in the interests of education. Today this is claimed as the origin of "academic freedom"; this is now recognised internationally - on 18 September 1988, 430 university rectors signed the Magna Charta Universitatum, marking the 900th anniversary of Bologna's foundation.
The number of universities signing the Magna Charta Universitatum continues to grow, drawing from all parts of the world. According to Encyclopædia Britannica, the earliest universities were founded in Asia and Africa, predating the first European medieval universities; the University of Al Quaraouiyine, founded in Morocco by Fatima al-Fihri in 859, is considered by some to be the oldest degree-granting university. Their endowment by a prince or monarch and their role in training government officials made early Mediterranean universities similar to Islamic madrasas, although madrasas were smaller, individual teachers, rather than the madrasa itself, granted the license or degree. Scholars like Arnold H. Green and Hossein Nasr have argued that starting in the 10th century, some medieval Islamic madrasas became universities. However, scholars like George Makdisi, Toby Huff and Norman Daniel argue that the European university has no parallel in the medieval Islamic world. Several other scholars consider the university as uniquely European in origin and characteristics.
Darleen Pryds questions this view, pointing out that madaris and European universities in the Mediterranean region shared similar foundations by princely patrons and were intended to provide loyal administrators to further the rulers' agenda. Some scholars, including Makdisi, have argued that early medieval universities were influenced by the madrasas in Al-Andalus, the Emirate of Sicily, the Middle East during the Crusades. Norman Daniel, views this argument as overstated. Roy Lowe and Yoshihito Yasuhara have drawn on the well-documented influences of scholarship from the Islamic world on the universities of Western Europe to call for a reconsideration of the development of higher education, turning away from a concern with local institutional structures to a broader consideration within a global context; the university is regarded as a formal institution that has its origin in the Medieval Christian tradition. European higher education took place for hundreds of years in cathedral schools or monastic schools, in which monks and nuns taught classes.
The earliest universities were developed under the aegis of the Latin Church by papal bull as studia generalia and from cathedral schools. It is possible, that the development of cathedral schools into universities was quite rare, with the University of Paris being an exception, they were founded by Kings or municipal administrations. In the early medieval period, most new universities were founded from pre-existing schools when these schools were deemed to have become sites of higher education. Many historians state that universities and cathedral schools were a continuation of the interest in learning promoted by The residence of a religious community. Pope Gregory VII was critical in promoting and regulating the concept of modern university as his 1079 Papal Decree ordered the regulated establishment of cathedral schools that transformed themselves into the first European universities; the first universities in Europe with a form of corporate/guild structure were the University of Bologna, the University of Paris, the University of Oxford.
The University of Bologna began as a law school teach
International Union of Students
The International Union of Students is a worldwide nonpartisan association of university student organizations. The IUS is the umbrella organization for 155 such students' organizations across 112 countries and territories representing 25 million students; this is recognised by the United Nations Organization granting the IUS a consultative status in UNESCO. The primary aim of the IUS is to defend the rights and interests of students to promote improvement in their welfare and standard of education and to prepare them for their tasks as democratic citizens; the aims of the IUS are spelled out in the 1946 preamble to the organization's Constitution: The purpose of the International Union of Students, founded upon the representative student organizations of different countries, shall be to defend the rights and interests of students to promote improvement in their welfare and standard of education and to prepare them for their tasks as democratic citizens. According to the IUS's entry in the UNESCO Non-Governmental Organization list, the priority work areas of the IUS are: "Exchange of information, defence of students' status, environment, human rights".
The IUS works through: Issuing Student Statements Circular News Letters and Calls for Action to members Celebration of the International Students' Day on November 17 Organizing Student Conferences The logo and flag of the IUS is a burning torch and an open book set against the red and blue outline of a stylized globe. It symbolizes youth's persistent quest for knowledge; the International Union of Students was founded in Prague on August 27, 1946. Student organizations from 62 countries participated in its founding envisioning a more inclusive successor to the short lived 1941-1944 International Council of Students, set up on the initiative of the British National Union of Students to maintain open lines of communication with student organizations in allied countries during World War II. From its earliest inception, the IUS was marked by a fundamental schism: "The spirit of co-operation and the desire to prevent a resurgence of fascism in Europe brought together otherwise divergent groups.
The main divisions, evident at the founding congress, were between the Communist student organizations, which gained control of the executive bodies of the IUS from the beginning, the student unions from western Europe, many of which were interested in preserving the idea of a non-political international agency which would provide concrete services to the students of various countries" In response to the partisan Communist course of the IUS and the broad powers of its secretariat and executive committee to initiate new policy programmes on behalf of the members, several non-Communist members withdrew their membership in the following years. Following which the IUS referred itself as Independent Federation of Left-Wing and Alternative Student Unions. 21 such break-away national students organizations met in Stockholm in 1950 to form the International Student Conference as a nonpartisan rival organization to the pro-Communist IUS. Notable among these founders was the United States National Student Association though "Anglo-Saxons and Dutch wielded the greatest influence ".
At the time of the formation of the ISC, the dominant view in analyses is that the IUS had become Communist controlled to such a degree that it is referred to as a Soviet Union Communist front organization with the IUS and ISC aligned along the Cold War fronts toward the Soviet Union and the United States of America respectively. A dissenting view that the IUS was influenced by socialism and communism but not de facto controlled by Soviet Communist interests, has been expressed, however, by Trotskyist Lawrence Brammer: "It is significant that several former IUS officers became outspoken liberals in Czechoslovakia and in the French and Italian Communist Parties; the outward pro-Soviet orientation of the IUS obscured real differences within the organization" IUS activities in this period included Student Games held by the IUS Sports Council. The first such games were held in Paris in 1946 and were subsequently integrated into the World Youth Festivals which the IUS co-sponsored with the Communist oriented World Federation of Democratic Youth.
Such festivals brought up to 30,000 youth and students together for a social and sporting event. From 1956 onwards, the IUS and ISC competed to attract student unions non-aligned in the Cold War sense. Focus was on Latin America and Africa and recruitment of member unions from here resulted in a broader political base for the IUS. Activities in this period included among others regional student seminars, donation of duplication machines and cameras to help affiliates, the establishment of student Health Centres in India, international student conferences as well as the publication in German and Czech of the World Student News journal of the IUS, the Democratic Education journal of the IUS, topical pamphlets concerning education. More spectacularly, the IUS continued to co-sponsor World Youth Festivals with the World Federation of Democratic Youth, it was well known from the outset that the IUS was funded by Soviet and Czech government contributions: "The cost of international meetings, large-scale publications, the other activities in which they engage, are beyond the financial resources of university students" However, the IUS's inability to win leadership in left-wing student movements in Europe despite its many activities caused the Soviet U
Poland the Republic of Poland, is a country located in Central Europe. It is divided into 16 administrative subdivisions, covering an area of 312,696 square kilometres, has a temperate seasonal climate. With a population of 38.5 million people, Poland is the sixth most populous member state of the European Union. Poland's capital and largest metropolis is Warsaw. Other major cities include Kraków, Łódź, Wrocław, Poznań, Gdańsk, Szczecin. Poland is bordered by the Baltic Sea, Russia's Kaliningrad Oblast and Lithuania to the north and Ukraine to the east and Czech Republic, to the south, Germany to the west; the establishment of the Polish state can be traced back to AD 966, when Mieszko I, ruler of the realm coextensive with the territory of present-day Poland, converted to Christianity. The Kingdom of Poland was founded in 1025, in 1569 it cemented its longstanding political association with the Grand Duchy of Lithuania by signing the Union of Lublin; this union formed the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, one of the largest and most populous countries of 16th and 17th century Europe, with a uniquely liberal political system which adopted Europe's first written national constitution, the Constitution of 3 May 1791.
More than a century after the Partitions of Poland at the end of the 18th century, Poland regained its independence in 1918 with the Treaty of Versailles. In September 1939, World War II started with the invasion of Poland by Germany, followed by the Soviet Union invading Poland in accordance with the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact. More than six million Polish citizens, including 90% of the country's Jews, perished in the war. In 1947, the Polish People's Republic was established as a satellite state under Soviet influence. In the aftermath of the Revolutions of 1989, most notably through the emergence of the Solidarity movement, Poland reestablished itself as a presidential democratic republic. Poland is regional power, it has the fifth largest economy by GDP in the European Union and one of the most dynamic economies in the world achieving a high rank on the Human Development Index. Additionally, the Polish Stock Exchange in Warsaw is the largest and most important in Central Europe. Poland is a developed country, which maintains a high-income economy along with high standards of living, life quality, safety and economic freedom.
Having a developed school educational system, the country provides free university education, state-funded social security, a universal health care system for all citizens. Poland has 15 UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Poland is a member state of the European Union, the Schengen Area, the United Nations, NATO, the OECD, the Three Seas Initiative, the Visegrád Group; the origin of the name "Poland" derives from the West Slavic tribe of Polans that inhabited the Warta river basin of the historic Greater Poland region starting in the 6th century. The origin of the name "Polanie" itself derives from the early Slavic word "pole". In some languages, such as Hungarian, Lithuanian and Turkish, the exonym for Poland is Lechites, which derives from the name of a semi-legendary ruler of Polans, Lech I. Early Bronze Age in Poland begun around 2400 BC, while the Iron Age commenced in 750 BC. During this time, the Lusatian culture, spanning both the Bronze and Iron Ages, became prominent; the most famous archaeological find from the prehistory and protohistory of Poland is the Biskupin fortified settlement, dating from the Lusatian culture of the early Iron Age, around 700 BC.
Throughout the Antiquity period, many distinct ancient ethnic groups populated the regions of what is now Poland in an era that dates from about 400 BC to 500 AD. These groups are identified as Celtic, Slavic and Germanic tribes. Recent archeological findings in the Kujawy region, confirmed the presence of the Roman Legions on the territory of Poland; these were most expeditionary missions sent out to protect the amber trade. The exact time and routes of the original migration and settlement of Slavic peoples lacks written records and can only be defined as fragmented; the Slavic tribes who would form Poland migrated to these areas in the second half of the 5th century AD. Up until the creation of Mieszko's state and his subsequent conversion to Christianity in 966 AD, the main religion of Slavic tribes that inhabited the geographical area of present-day Poland was Slavic paganism. With the Baptism of Poland the Polish rulers accepted Christianity and the religious authority of the Roman Church.
However, the transition from paganism was not a smooth and instantaneous process for the rest of the population as evident from the pagan reaction of the 1030s. Poland began to form into a recognizable unitary and territorial entity around the middle of the 10th century under the Piast dynasty. Poland's first documented ruler, Mieszko I, accepted Christianity with the Baptism of Poland in 966, as the new official religion of his subjects; the bulk of the population converted in the course of the next few centuries. In 1000, Boleslaw the Brave, continuing the policy of his father Mieszko, held a Congress of Gniezno and created the metropolis of Gniezno and the dioceses of Kraków, Kołobrzeg, Wrocław. However, the pagan unrest led to the transfer of the capital to Kraków in 1038 by Casimir I the Restorer. In 1109, Prince Bolesław III Wrymouth defeated the King of Germany Henry V at the Battle of Hundsfeld, stopping the Ge
Italy the Italian Republic, is a country in Southern Europe. Located in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, Italy shares open land borders with France, Austria and the enclaved microstates San Marino and Vatican City. Italy covers an area of 301,340 km2 and has a temperate seasonal and Mediterranean climate. With around 61 million inhabitants, it is the fourth-most populous EU member state and the most populous country in Southern Europe. Due to its central geographic location in Southern Europe and the Mediterranean, Italy has been home to a myriad of peoples and cultures. In addition to the various ancient peoples dispersed throughout modern-day Italy, the most famous of which being the Indo-European Italics who gave the peninsula its name, beginning from the classical era and Carthaginians founded colonies in insular Italy and Genoa, Greeks established settlements in the so-called Magna Graecia, while Etruscans and Celts inhabited central and northern Italy respectively; the Italic tribe known as the Latins formed the Roman Kingdom in the 8th century BC, which became a republic with a government of the Senate and the People.
The Roman Republic conquered and assimilated its neighbours on the peninsula, in some cases through the establishment of federations, the Republic expanded and conquered parts of Europe, North Africa and the Middle East. By the first century BC, the Roman Empire emerged as the dominant power in the Mediterranean Basin and became the leading cultural and religious centre of Western civilisation, inaugurating the Pax Romana, a period of more than 200 years during which Italy's technology, economy and literature flourished. Italy remained the metropole of the Roman Empire; the legacy of the Roman Empire endured its fall and can be observed in the global distribution of culture, governments and the Latin script. During the Early Middle Ages, Italy endured sociopolitical collapse and barbarian invasions, but by the 11th century, numerous rival city-states and maritime republics in the northern and central regions of Italy, rose to great prosperity through shipping and banking, laying the groundwork for modern capitalism.
These independent statelets served as Europe's main trading hubs with Asia and the Near East enjoying a greater degree of democracy than the larger feudal monarchies that were consolidating throughout Europe. The Renaissance began in Italy and spread to the rest of Europe, bringing a renewed interest in humanism, science and art. Italian culture flourished, producing famous scholars and polymaths such as Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael and Machiavelli. During the Middle Ages, Italian explorers such as Marco Polo, Christopher Columbus, Amerigo Vespucci, John Cabot and Giovanni da Verrazzano discovered new routes to the Far East and the New World, helping to usher in the European Age of Discovery. Italy's commercial and political power waned with the opening of trade routes that bypassed the Mediterranean. Centuries of infighting between the Italian city-states, such as the Italian Wars of the 15th and 16th centuries, left the region fragmented, it was subsequently conquered and further divided by European powers such as France and Austria.
By the mid-19th century, rising Italian nationalism and calls for independence from foreign control led to a period of revolutionary political upheaval. After centuries of foreign domination and political division, Italy was entirely unified in 1871, establishing the Kingdom of Italy as a great power. From the late 19th century to the early 20th century, Italy industrialised, namely in the north, acquired a colonial empire, while the south remained impoverished and excluded from industrialisation, fuelling a large and influential diaspora. Despite being one of the main victors in World War I, Italy entered a period of economic crisis and social turmoil, leading to the rise of a fascist dictatorship in 1922. Participation in World War II on the Axis side ended in military defeat, economic destruction and the Italian Civil War. Following the liberation of Italy and the rise of the resistance, the country abolished the monarchy, reinstated democracy, enjoyed a prolonged economic boom and, despite periods of sociopolitical turmoil became a developed country.
Today, Italy is considered to be one of the world's most culturally and economically advanced countries, with the sixth-largest worldwide national wealth. Its advanced economy ranks eighth-largest in the world and third in the Eurozone by nominal GDP. Italy owns the third-largest central bank gold reserve, it has a high level of human development, it stands among the top countries for life expectancy. The country plays a prominent role in regional and global economic, military and diplomatic affairs. Italy is a founding and leading member of the European Union and a member of numerous international institutions, including the UN, NATO, the OECD, the OSCE, the WTO, the G7, the G20, the Union for the Mediterranean, the Council of Europe, Uniting for Consensus, the Schengen Area and many more; as a reflection
Anschluss refers to the annexation of Austria into Nazi Germany on 12 March 1938. The word's German spelling, until the German orthography reform of 1996, was Anschluß and it was known as the Anschluss Österreichs. Prior to the Anschluss, there had been strong support from people of all backgrounds – not just Nazis – in both Austria and Germany for a union of the two countries; the desire for a union formed an integral part of the Nazi "Heim ins Reich" movement to bring ethnic Germans outside Nazi Germany into Greater Germany. Earlier, Nazi Germany had provided support for the Austrian National Socialist Party in its bid to seize power from Austria's Fatherland Front government; the idea of an Anschluss began after the unification of Germany excluded Austria and the German Austrians from the Prussian-dominated German Empire in 1871. Following the end of World War I with the fall of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, in 1918, the newly formed Republic of German-Austria attempted to form a union with Germany, but the Treaty of Saint Germain and the Treaty of Versailles forbade both the union and the continued use of the name "German-Austria".
The idea of grouping all Germans into one nation-state had been the subject of debate in the 19th century from the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806 until the break-up of the German Confederation in 1866. Austria had wanted a Großdeutsche Lösung, whereby the German states would unite under the leadership of the German Austrians; this solution would have included all the German states, but Prussia would have had to take second place. This controversy, called dualism, dominated Prusso-Austrian diplomacy and the politics of the German states in the mid-nineteenth century. In 1866 the feud came to an end during the German war in which the Prussians defeated the Austrians and thereby excluded Austria and the German Austrians from Germany; the Prussian statesman Otto von Bismarck formed the North German Confederation, which included the remaining German states and further expanded the power of Prussia. Bismarck used the Franco-Prussian war as a way to convince other German states, including the Kingdom of Bavaria, to side with Prussia against the Second French Empire.
Due to Prussia's quick victory, the debate was settled and in 1871 the "Kleindeutsch" German Empire based on the leadership of Bismarck and the Kingdom of Prussia formed - this excluded Austria. The Austro-Hungarian Compromise of 1867, the Ausgleich, provided for a dual sovereignty, the Austrian Empire and the Kingdom of Hungary, under Franz Joseph I; the Austrian-Hungarian rule of this diverse empire included various different ethnic groups including Hungarians, Slavic ethnic groups such as Croats, Poles, Serbs, Slovaks and Ukrainians, as well as Italians and Romanians ruled by a German minority. The empire caused tensions between the various ethnic groups. Many Austrian pan-Germans showed loyalty to Bismarck and only to Germany, wore symbols that were temporarily banned in Austrian schools and advocated the dissolution of the empire to allow an annexation of Austria to Germany. Although many Austrians agreed with pan-Germanism ideas, a lot of them still showed allegiance to the Habsburg Monarchy and wished for Austria to remain an independent country.
After the Nazis gained power in Germany in 1933, they used propaganda to try to coerce Austrians into advocating for an Anschluss to the German Reich by using slogans such as Ein Volk, ein Reich, ein Führer. By the end of World War I, Austria had been excluded from internal German affairs for more than fifty years since the Peace of Prague that concluded the Austro-Prussian War of 1866. Elite and popular opinion in Austria after 1918 favored some sort of union with Germany, but it was explicitly forbidden by the peace treaties; the Austro-Hungarian Empire broke up in 1918, on 12 November that year German Austria was declared a republic. The provisional national assembly drafted a provisional constitution that stated that "German Austria is a democratic republic" and "German Austria is a component of the German Republic". Plebiscites in the German border provinces of Tyrol and Salzburg yielded majorities of 98% and 99% in favor of a unification with the German Republic. In the aftermath of a prohibition of an Anschluss, the Germans in both Austria and Germany pointed to a contradiction in the national self-determination principle because it failed to grant it to the ethnic Germans outside of the German Reich.
The Treaty of Versailles and the Treaty of Saint-Germain explicitly prohibited the political inclusion of Austria in the German state. This measure was criticized by Hugo Preuss, the drafter of the German Weimar Constitution, who saw the prohibition as a contradiction of the Wilsonian principle of self-determination of peoples, intended to help bring peace to Europe. Following the destruction of World War I, however and Britain feared the power of a larger Germany and had begun to disempower the current one. Austrian particularism among the nobility played a role in the decisions; the constitutions of the Weimar Republic and the First Austrian Republic inclu
Warsaw is the capital and largest city of Poland. The metropolis stands on the Vistula River in east-central Poland and its population is estimated at 1.770 million residents within a greater metropolitan area of 3.1 million residents, which makes Warsaw the 8th most-populous capital city in the European Union. The city limits cover 516.9 square kilometres, while the metropolitan area covers 6,100.43 square kilometres. Warsaw is an alpha global city, a major international tourist destination, a significant cultural and economic hub, its historical Old Town was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Once described as the'Paris of the North', Warsaw was believed to be one of the most beautiful cities in the world until World War II. Bombed at the start of the German invasion in 1939, the city withstood a siege for which it was awarded Poland's highest military decoration for heroism, the Virtuti Militari. Deportations of the Jewish population to concentration camps led to the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising in 1943 and the destruction of the Ghetto after a month of combat.
A general Warsaw Uprising between August and October 1944 led to greater devastation and systematic razing by the Germans in advance of the Vistula–Oder Offensive. Warsaw gained the new title of Phoenix City because of its extensive history and complete reconstruction after World War II, which had left over 85% of its buildings in ruins. Warsaw is one of Europe's most dynamic metropolitan cities. In 2012 the Economist Intelligence Unit ranked Warsaw as the 32nd most liveable city in the world. In 2017 the city came 4th in the "Business-friendly" category and 8th in "Human capital and life style", it was ranked as one of the most liveable cities in Central and Eastern Europe. The city is a significant centre of research and development, Business process outsourcing, Information technology outsourcing, as well as of the Polish media industry; the Warsaw Stock Exchange is most important in Central and Eastern Europe. Frontex, the European Union agency for external border security as well as ODIHR, one of the principal institutions of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe have their headquarters in Warsaw.
Together with Frankfurt and Paris, Warsaw is one of the cities with the highest number of skyscrapers in the European Union. The city is the seat of the Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw National Philharmonic Orchestra, University of Warsaw, the Warsaw Polytechnic, the National Museum, the Great Theatre—National Opera, the largest of its kind in the world, the Zachęta National Gallery of Art; the picturesque Old Town of Warsaw, which represents examples of nearly every European architectural style and historical period, was listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1980. Other main architectural attractions include the Castle Square with the Royal Castle and the iconic King Sigismund's Column, the Wilanów Palace, the Łazienki Palace, St. John's Cathedral, Main Market Square, palaces and mansions all displaying a richness of colour and detail. Warsaw is positioning itself as Central and Eastern Europe’s chic cultural capital with thriving art and club scenes and serious restaurants, with around a quarter of the city's area occupied by parks.
Warsaw's name in the Polish language is Warszawa. Other previous spellings of the name may have included Werszewa. According to some sources, the origin of the name is unknown. In Pre-Slavic toponomastic layer of Northern Mazovia: corrections and addenda, it is stated that the toponymy of northern Mazovia tends to have unclear etymology. Warszawa was the name of a fishing village. According to one theory Warszawa means "belonging to Warsz", Warsz being a shortened form of the masculine name of Slavic origin Warcisław; however the ending -awa is unusual for a big city. Folk etymology attributes the city name to a fisherman and his wife, Sawa. According to legend, Sawa was a mermaid living in the Vistula River. In actuality, Warsz was a 12th/13th-century nobleman who owned a village located at the modern-day site of the Mariensztat neighbourhood. See the Vršovci family which had escaped to Poland; the official city name in full is miasto stołeczne Warszawa. A native or resident of Warsaw is known as a Varsovian – in Polish warszawiak, warszawianka and warszawianie.
Other names for Warsaw include Varsovia and Varsóvia, Varsavia, Warschau, װאַרשע /Varshe, Varšuva, Varsó and Varšava The first fortified settlements on the site of today's Warsaw were located in Bródno and Jazdów. After Jazdów was raided by nearby clans and dukes, a new similar settlement was established on the site of a small fishing village called Warszowa; the Prince of Płock, Bolesław II of Masovia, established this settlement, the modern-day Warsaw, in about 1300. In the beginning of the 14th century it became one of the seats of the Dukes of Masovia, becoming the official capital of the Masovian Duchy in 1413. 14th-century Warsaw's economy rested on crafts and trade. Upon the extinction of the local ducal line, the duchy was reincorporated into the Crown of the Kingdom of Poland in 1526. In 1529, Warsaw for the first time became the seat of th
Germany the Federal Republic of Germany, is a country in Central and Western Europe, lying between the Baltic and North Seas to the north, the Alps to the south. It borders Denmark to the north and the Czech Republic to the east and Switzerland to the south, France to the southwest, Luxembourg and the Netherlands to the west. Germany includes 16 constituent states, covers an area of 357,386 square kilometres, has a temperate seasonal climate. With 83 million inhabitants, it is the second most populous state of Europe after Russia, the most populous state lying in Europe, as well as the most populous member state of the European Union. Germany is a decentralized country, its capital and largest metropolis is Berlin, while Frankfurt serves as its financial capital and has the country's busiest airport. Germany's largest urban area is the Ruhr, with its main centres of Essen; the country's other major cities are Hamburg, Cologne, Stuttgart, Düsseldorf, Dresden, Bremen and Nuremberg. Various Germanic tribes have inhabited the northern parts of modern Germany since classical antiquity.
A region named Germania was documented before 100 AD. During the Migration Period, the Germanic tribes expanded southward. Beginning in the 10th century, German territories formed a central part of the Holy Roman Empire. During the 16th century, northern German regions became the centre of the Protestant Reformation. After the collapse of the Holy Roman Empire, the German Confederation was formed in 1815; the German revolutions of 1848–49 resulted in the Frankfurt Parliament establishing major democratic rights. In 1871, Germany became a nation state when most of the German states unified into the Prussian-dominated German Empire. After World War I and the revolution of 1918–19, the Empire was replaced by the parliamentary Weimar Republic; the Nazi seizure of power in 1933 led to the establishment of a dictatorship, the annexation of Austria, World War II, the Holocaust. After the end of World War II in Europe and a period of Allied occupation, Austria was re-established as an independent country and two new German states were founded: West Germany, formed from the American and French occupation zones, East Germany, formed from the Soviet occupation zone.
Following the Revolutions of 1989 that ended communist rule in Central and Eastern Europe, the country was reunified on 3 October 1990. Today, the sovereign state of Germany is a federal parliamentary republic led by a chancellor, it is a great power with a strong economy. As a global leader in several industrial and technological sectors, it is both the world's third-largest exporter and importer of goods; as a developed country with a high standard of living, it upholds a social security and universal health care system, environmental protection, a tuition-free university education. The Federal Republic of Germany was a founding member of the European Economic Community in 1957 and the European Union in 1993, it is part of the Schengen Area and became a co-founder of the Eurozone in 1999. Germany is a member of the United Nations, NATO, the G7, the G20, the OECD. Known for its rich cultural history, Germany has been continuously the home of influential and successful artists, musicians, film people, entrepreneurs, scientists and inventors.
Germany has a large number of World Heritage sites and is among the top tourism destinations in the world. The English word Germany derives from the Latin Germania, which came into use after Julius Caesar adopted it for the peoples east of the Rhine; the German term Deutschland diutisciu land is derived from deutsch, descended from Old High German diutisc "popular" used to distinguish the language of the common people from Latin and its Romance descendants. This in turn descends from Proto-Germanic *þiudiskaz "popular", derived from *þeudō, descended from Proto-Indo-European *tewtéh₂- "people", from which the word Teutons originates; the discovery of the Mauer 1 mandible shows that ancient humans were present in Germany at least 600,000 years ago. The oldest complete hunting weapons found anywhere in the world were discovered in a coal mine in Schöningen between 1994 and 1998 where eight 380,000-year-old wooden javelins of 1.82 to 2.25 m length were unearthed. The Neander Valley was the location where the first non-modern human fossil was discovered.
The Neanderthal 1 fossils are known to be 40,000 years old. Evidence of modern humans dated, has been found in caves in the Swabian Jura near Ulm; the finds included 42,000-year-old bird bone and mammoth ivory flutes which are the oldest musical instruments found, the 40,000-year-old Ice Age Lion Man, the oldest uncontested figurative art discovered, the 35,000-year-old Venus of Hohle Fels, the oldest uncontested human figurative art discovered. The Nebra sky disk is a bronze artefact created during the European Bronze Age attributed to a site near Nebra, Saxony-Anhalt, it is part of UNESCO's Memory of the World Programme. The Germanic tribes are thought to date from the Pre-Roman Iron Age. From southern Scandinavia and north Germany, they expanded south and west from the 1st century BC, coming into contact with the Celtic tribes of Gaul as well