France the French Republic, is a country whose territory consists of metropolitan France in Western Europe and several overseas regions and territories. The metropolitan area of France extends from the Mediterranean Sea to the English Channel and the North Sea, from the Rhine to the Atlantic Ocean, it is bordered by Belgium and Germany to the northeast and Italy to the east, Andorra and Spain to the south. The overseas territories include French Guiana in South America and several islands in the Atlantic and Indian oceans; the country's 18 integral regions span a combined area of 643,801 square kilometres and a total population of 67.3 million. France, a sovereign state, is a unitary semi-presidential republic with its capital in Paris, the country's largest city and main cultural and commercial centre. Other major urban areas include Lyon, Toulouse, Bordeaux and Nice. During the Iron Age, what is now metropolitan France was inhabited by a Celtic people. Rome annexed the area in 51 BC, holding it until the arrival of Germanic Franks in 476, who formed the Kingdom of Francia.
The Treaty of Verdun of 843 partitioned Francia into Middle Francia and West Francia. West Francia which became the Kingdom of France in 987 emerged as a major European power in the Late Middle Ages following its victory in the Hundred Years' War. During the Renaissance, French culture flourished and a global colonial empire was established, which by the 20th century would become the second largest in the world; the 16th century was dominated by religious civil wars between Protestants. France became Europe's dominant cultural and military power in the 17th century under Louis XIV. In the late 18th century, the French Revolution overthrew the absolute monarchy, established one of modern history's earliest republics, saw the drafting of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, which expresses the nation's ideals to this day. In the 19th century, Napoleon established the First French Empire, his subsequent Napoleonic Wars shaped the course of continental Europe. Following the collapse of the Empire, France endured a tumultuous succession of governments culminating with the establishment of the French Third Republic in 1870.
France was a major participant in World War I, from which it emerged victorious, was one of the Allies in World War II, but came under occupation by the Axis powers in 1940. Following liberation in 1944, a Fourth Republic was established and dissolved in the course of the Algerian War; the Fifth Republic, led by Charles de Gaulle, remains today. Algeria and nearly all the other colonies became independent in the 1960s and retained close economic and military connections with France. France has long been a global centre of art and philosophy, it hosts the world's fourth-largest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites and is the leading tourist destination, receiving around 83 million foreign visitors annually. France is a developed country with the world's sixth-largest economy by nominal GDP, tenth-largest by purchasing power parity. In terms of aggregate household wealth, it ranks fourth in the world. France performs well in international rankings of education, health care, life expectancy, human development.
France is considered a great power in global affairs, being one of the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council with the power to veto and an official nuclear-weapon state. It is a leading member state of the European Union and the Eurozone, a member of the Group of 7, North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the World Trade Organization, La Francophonie. Applied to the whole Frankish Empire, the name "France" comes from the Latin "Francia", or "country of the Franks". Modern France is still named today "Francia" in Italian and Spanish, "Frankreich" in German and "Frankrijk" in Dutch, all of which have more or less the same historical meaning. There are various theories as to the origin of the name Frank. Following the precedents of Edward Gibbon and Jacob Grimm, the name of the Franks has been linked with the word frank in English, it has been suggested that the meaning of "free" was adopted because, after the conquest of Gaul, only Franks were free of taxation.
Another theory is that it is derived from the Proto-Germanic word frankon, which translates as javelin or lance as the throwing axe of the Franks was known as a francisca. However, it has been determined that these weapons were named because of their use by the Franks, not the other way around; the oldest traces of human life in what is now France date from 1.8 million years ago. Over the ensuing millennia, Humans were confronted by a harsh and variable climate, marked by several glacial eras. Early hominids led a nomadic hunter-gatherer life. France has a large number of decorated caves from the upper Palaeolithic era, including one of the most famous and best preserved, Lascaux. At the end of the last glacial period, the climate became milder. After strong demographic and agricultural development between the 4th and 3rd millennia, metallurgy appeared at the end of the 3rd millennium working gold and bronze, iron. France has numerous megalithic sites from the Neolithic period, including the exceptiona
Artolsheim is a commune in the Bas-Rhin department in Alsace in northeastern France. Artolsheim has the distinction of being further from the sea than any other place in France; the Gulf of Genoa and the mouth of the River Scheldt are both 430 kilometres away. Employment opportunities in the village are limited; the traditional economic focus of the region is Sélestat some fifteen kilometres to the west. The river crossing of Marckolsheim with its associated locks and hydro-electric power station offer employment opportunities: many low-paid seasonal jobs are provided by the Europa-Park'theme park'. Communes of the Bas-Rhin department INSEE commune file
Baldenheim is a commune in the Bas-Rhin department in the Alsace region of north-eastern France. The inhabitants of the commune are known as Baldenheimoises; the commune has been awarded two flowers by the National Council of Towns and Villages in Bloom in the Competition of cities and villages in Bloom. Baldenheim is located in the Canton of Marckolsheim and the Arrondissement of Sélestat-Erstein in the centre of the Alsace region on the alluvial plain of the Rhine, 45 km south of Strasbourg, 26 km north by north-east of Colmar and 8 km east of Sélestat. Access to the commune is by the D605 from Hessenheim in the south which passes through the village and continues north to Muttersholtz; the D209 comes from Schwobsheim in the east and passes through the village continuing west to join the D21 near the commune border. The D208 goes south-west from the village to Mussig; the commune is part of the Ried Natural Region. The water table is only 1.50 metres below the surface on average. Water gives rise to waterways.
The Ill river flows calmly across the plain. Like all the rivers in Vosges it is subject to an oceanic regime, characterized by high winter waters and low summer waters, contrary to the Rhine; the last catastrophic flood occurred in May 1983. The climate is of semi-continental type with about 600 mm of rain per year. Temperature differences are marked: summers can be hot and the winters harsh; the commune outside the urban area has five distinct types of landscape: Suburban Village: orchards and gardens, Rural Open Spaces: fields and woods, Wetland: the Black Ried, Banks of the Ill: the Grey Ried, Forested areas. About 80% of the utilized agricultural area is cultivated; the Ill, the Blind and numerous streams flow north though the commune all merging with the Ill which joins the Rhine at Plobsheim. Bandenheim, 1182 There is a Merovingian and Carolingian Cemetery with a hundred graves which attest to the ancient occupation of the commune. Most of the tombs are shallow and contained no ornaments with disturbed skeletons indicating plundering long ago.
Another group of burials are deeper and contained rich ornaments (brooches in bronze and silver partitioned with garnet, glass beads, glass paste necklaces, amber necklaces, other objects from the second half of the 6th century and the second third of the 7th century. The ornaments collected from Baldenheim are from a time period between 550 and 650. Baldenheim appeared in a document from the second half of the 7th century in the form of Baldenheim Villa; the name of this village, according to legend, is. He refused to retrieve it saying B'haltene; the village adopted this onomatopoeia. But the name Baldenheim does appear in the 9th century; the Protestant Reformation was introduced in 1576. A castle was built in 1740 and destroyed in 1821; the Simultaneau in 1843 provoked a violent conflict between the two religious communities. In the 19th century there was significant growth in weaving and there were 150 weavers in the commune. In the last third of the 19th century, the cooperative movement developed in the commune.
A savings bank was founded in 1890 and a dairy cooperative operated until 1981. In 1324 the village belonged to the Duchy of Württemberg, it had given in fief to the Rathsamhausen zum Stein family. Upon the extinction of this noble family, Louis XIV gave it to the engineer of Chamlay, leaving it for him to pay tribute to the Duke of Württemberg who, at the death of the commander of Chamlay passed the fief to the family of Sandersleben-Coligny. Before the French Revolution it was owned by the Waldner Freundstein family whose castle was demolished in 1820. From the 19th century home weaving occupied a important place in the local economy. Baldenheim is known for its festival of "Pfingstpflitteri", held for the tenth time in 1999. In July 1902 Oscar Pfiffer discovered some objects in his field at Lange Gasse. A more thorough search uncovered other Merovingian objects. A study published in 1907 by R. Henning made Baldenheim the eponymous site for this type of helmet with thirty examples identified at this time.
The Baldenheim Helmet is now on display at the Museum of Archaeology in Strasbourg. List of Successive Mayors In 2010 the commune had 1,150 inhabitants; the evolution of the number of inhabitants is known from the population censuses conducted in the commune since 1793. From the 21st century, a census of communes with fewer than 10,000 inhabitants is held every five years, unlike larger communes that have a sample survey every year. Population change Sources: Ldh/EHESS/Cassini until 1962, INSEE database from 1968 The ratio of active population to total population of the commune has grown above the cantonal average. There is evidence that unemployment has decreased. Fruit and vegetables and plants are cultivated in the commune and there are a dozen pig farmers; the number of farms has decreased but orchards are still important and Baldenheim is known for its "white apples of Baldenheim". The village enjoys a high level of economic activity and expansion. There are 440 jobs available in the commune to over 1000 inhabitants.
The commune has many buildings and structures that are registered as historical monuments: Farmhouses Other sites of interestThe Town Hall is on the former location of the communal school which existed from 1600 which for a long time provided separate courses for Cathol
Avolsheim is a French commune in the Bas-Rhin department in the Grand Est region of north-eastern France. The inhabitants of the commune are known as Avolsheimoises; the commune has been awarded one flower by the National Council of Towns and Villages in Bloom in the Competition of cities and villages in Bloom. Avolsheim is located some 22 km west by 18 km north of Obernai. Access to the commune is by the D422 from Odratzheim in the north which passes through the centre of the commune and the town and continues south to Molsheim; the D127 goes east from the town to Dachstein. Apart from the significant sized urban area the commune is mixed farmland; the Bruche river flows north through the east of the commune and abruptly turns right near the northern border of the commune before continuing east to join a branch of the Rhine at Strasbourg. The Mossig river flows from the north-west forming the northern border of the commune before joining the Bruche; the first written record of the name of a village in the current commune dates from the year 788 and is called Hunzolfesheim.
It was found in 1051 spelled Avelsheim Afelsheim in 1350 with a dialectal form Âfelse. In 1496 it was written Afeltzheim and in 1589 Avelssheim again but with two "s". Since the village has had its present name and its spelling has not changed; the prefix offe was the origin of the name Avolsheim and therefore means "Open Town". It is possible that this name was given to the village since it was devoid of walls, which in the Middle Ages was rare. There is an old local saying in dialect: Es steht offe wie Âfelse suggesting that at one time the steeple at Avolsheim, which remained so long in ruins so was "open to the sky", that this could have been the origin of its name; this argument, with the previous one, are confirmed by the popular phrase, Fescht wie Landau un Offe wie Âfelse meaning "A Fort like Landau or open like Avolsheim". Avolsheim is located on the Gallo-Roman road linking Molsheim to Saverne. Many objects dating from this period were excavated in 1930. In the 10th century the area had two distinct hamlets: Avelsheim one hand, corresponding to the current village, Tumpfieter, Dompieter, or Domphietenheim, a village consisting of a group of a few farms and a mill located at a church called the Dompeter.
The last mention of this hamlet was in the 16th century. It died as a village by the end of the same century. For some historians doubt remains: it may have disappeared in the 17th century, its destruction following the Siege of Dachstein by the armies of Turenne. According to the papal bull of Leo IX in 1051 Avolsheim, including the Mont Sainte-Odile Abbey, was part of the possessions of the bishopric of Strasbourg. Avolsheim was put in vassalage to the Counts of Ostoffen to von Murnhart in 1384, remained with von Beger until 1521. From 1534 until the Revolution, the area was a fief of the dignitaries of the diocese; the village has been linked to the sub-prefecture of Molsheim since the Revolution. Avolsheim was once on the Sélestat to Saverne railway line before the section from Molsheim to Saverne was removed in 1967 and replaced with a bicycle path. List of Successive Mayors In 2010 the commune had 728 inhabitants; the evolution of the number of inhabitants is known from the population censuses conducted in the commune since 1793.
From the 21st century, a census of communes with fewer than 10,000 inhabitants is held every five years, unlike larger communes that have a sample survey every year. Population change Sources: Ldh/EHESS/Cassini until 1962, INSEE database from 1968 The commune has many buildings that are registered as historical monuments: A Vineyard Farmhouse at 3 Rue de la Boucherie A Vineyard Farmhouse at 4 Rue de Dompeter The Audéoud House or Maison des Soeurs at 1 place de l'Ecole A Stonemason's House at 2 place de l'Ecole A Vineyard Farmhouse at 4 Place de l'Eglise A Guardhouse at 16 Rue de la Paix A Vineyard Farmhouse at 2 Rue de la Paix A Boatman's House at 5 Rue de la Paix A former Presbytery now Town Hall at 8 Rue de la Paix A Fisherman's House at 9 Rue de la Paix A Stonemason's House at 2 bis Rue Saint-Ullrich A Farmhouse at 5 Route du Vin Houses and FarmsOther sites of interestThe Avolsheim Dam was built in 1682 on the Bruche Canal, built by Vauban; this canal was used to transport blocks of sandstone to Strasbourg from quarries at Soultz-les-Bains and Wolxheim which were necessary for the construction of the Citadel of Strasbourg.
This dam enabled the keeping of the water level high enough to supply the canal located a little further down. The commune has two religious buildings that are registered as historical monuments: The Chapel of Saint-Ullrich; the original building dates back to the end of the 10th century. In 1774 the chapel was transformed to become the new church adopting the facade, seen today; the chapel consists of an original Tetraconch, the oldest still existing in Alsace located along the ancient Roman road in the foothills of the Vosges. Taking the form of a clover leaf covered by a dome, the chapel is surmounted by an unusual octagonal tower. In 1774 a church was built next to the chapel to replace the Dompeter, too far away; the church was demolished in 1911 because the building was too small. The central dome and mural paintings were revealed in 1968; the chapel contains two items that are registered as historical objects: A Monumental Painting An Altar (18
Benfeld is a commune in the Bas-Rhin department in Grand Est in northeastern France. It is situated on the river Ill. In the nearby hamlet Ehl there is an archaeological site with the remains of the Gallo-Roman city Ellelum or Helvetum; the handsome 1846 synagogue survived the Nazi occupation. Communes of the Bas-Rhin department INSEE commune file
Altenheim is a French commune in the Bas-Rhin department in the Grand Est region of north-eastern France. It should not be confused with the German town of the same name, Neuried, in the state of Baden-Württemberg; the inhabitants of the commune are known as Altenheimois or Altenheimoises Altenheim is located some 10 km east by south-east of Saverne and 30 km north-west of Strasbourg. It can be accessed from five directions: from Furchhausen in the west by road D230, from Dettwiller in the north by road D112, from Littenheim in the east by road D151, from Saessolsheim in the south-east by road D230, from Wolschheim in the south by road D112. All these roads intersect in the village; the commune consists of farmland other than the village. The only waterway in the commune is the Drusenbach crossing the south-western corner and two small tributaries of this stream in the north of the commune. On 21 January 1945, an American B-17 bomber,the "Princess Pat" was hit by flak returning from a mission to Heilbronn and landed on its belly near the D230 road between Altenheim and Furchhausen.
List of Successive Mayors of Altenheim In 2009, the commune had 226 inhabitants. The evolution of the number of inhabitants is known through the population censuses conducted in the town since 1793. From the 21st century, a census of municipalities with fewer than 10,000 inhabitants is held every five years, unlike larger towns that have a sample survey every year. Population change Sources: Ldh/EHESS/Cassini until 1962, INSEE database from 1968 The commune has a large number of buildings and structures that are registered as historical monuments: A House A House A House A House A House A House A House A House A Napoleanic Banc-Reposoir The Village Houses The commune has several religious buildings and structures that are registered as historical monuments: A Wayside Cross at R. D. 112 A Wayside Cross at R. D. 112 / R. D. 151 A Wayside Cross at R. D. 112 A Wayside Cross at R. D. 112 A Wayside Cross at R. D. 230 A Wayside Cross at R. D. 230 A Wayside Cross at R. D. 230 The Chapel of la-Fête-Dieu The Church of Saint Lambert.
The Church contains many items that are registered as historical objects: A Funeral Monument of Marie-rose Schmitt and family A Funeral Monument of Maria Diss and Jean-Michel Klein A Funeral Monument of Marie-Odile Debs A Funeral Monument A Chalice with Paten A Statue: Saint Lambert A Neo-Gothic Chalice A Cross: Christ on the Cross 2 Confessionals A Baptismal font A Tabernacle A Monumental Cross A Cemetery Cross Communes of the Bas-Rhin department Altenheim on the old IGN website Altenheim on Lion1906 Altenheim on Google Maps Altenheim on Géoportail, National Geographic Institute website Altenheim on the 1750 Cassini Map Altenheim on the INSEE website INSEE
Bernardvillé is a commune in the Bas-Rhin department in Alsace in northeastern France. Communes of the Bas-Rhin department INSEE commune file