Paços de Ferreira
Paços de Ferreira is a city in the Porto district, in the north of Portugal. The population of the city in 2011 was 7491, while its municipality had 56,340 inhabitants, in an area of 70.99 km². Sometimes referred to as the Capital do Móvel, owing to the predominance of this industry within its territory, the municipality has around 5000 companies producing furniture and has the biggest exhibition and selling area of furniture in Europe, it is the location of IKEA's industrial operations within Portugal. Its football team, FC Paços de Ferreira, participated for three times in European Competitions, finished runners-up of the Portuguese Cup in 2008/2009 and of the Portuguese League Cup in 2010/2011; the territory of the current municipality was occupied by humans since prehistory. In the parish of Sanfins de Ferreira, there is an important hillfort, the Citânia de Sanfins, one of the main settlements of the Celtic tribes who lived in northwest Iberian Peninsula. In medieval times, this planaltic area had few population.
The only centers of power were the monastery of Ferreira and the noble families concentrated in the parish of Frazão. After the Portuguese Civil War, the new constitucional regime made important administrative changes, for the first time, granted administrative autonomy for the populations of the region, creating a municipality in 1836 and appointing the most central parish of the plateau, Santa Eulália de Paços de Ferreira, as capital. Since the territory registered a remarkable development, the population more than sextupled in 150 years. In the beginnings of the 20th century, a local elementary school teacher, Albino de Matos, invented new tools and furniture which began to be used in schools all around the country, marking the beginning of the furniture industry in Paços de Ferreira. In the second half of the century, with the economic growth of the country, the carpenters of Paços de Ferreira started to make and sell furniture for houses, which allowed the industry to expand, becoming the most important activity of the population.
In 1993 the Portuguese parliament gave the title of city to Paços de Ferreira. In 2001 the same succeeded with the parish of Freamunde, while Frazão and Carvalhosa were declared "vila" in 1995 and 2004, respectively; the 21st century saw a crescent suburbanization of the territory because of the new highway opened in 2004 which connects Paços de Ferreira and Oporto in only 15 minutes. Administratively, the municipality is divided into 12 civil parishes: F. C. Paços de Ferreira S. C. Freamunde
Nanjing romanized as Nanking and Nankin, is the capital of Jiangsu province of the People's Republic of China and the second largest city in the East China region, with an administrative area of 6,600 km2 and a total population of 8,270,500 as of 2016. The inner area of Nanjing enclosed by the city wall is Nanjing City, with an area of 55 km2, while the Nanjing Metropolitan Region includes surrounding cities and areas, covering over 60,000 km2, with a population of over 30 million. Situated in the Yangtze River Delta region, Nanjing has a prominent place in Chinese history and culture, having served as the capital of various Chinese dynasties and republican governments dating from the 3rd century to 1949, has thus long been a major center of culture, research, economy, transport networks and tourism, being the home to one of the world's largest inland ports; the city is one of the fifteen sub-provincial cities in the People's Republic of China's administrative structure, enjoying jurisdictional and economic autonomy only less than that of a province.
Nanjing has been ranked seventh in the evaluation of "Cities with Strongest Comprehensive Strength" issued by the National Statistics Bureau, second in the evaluation of cities with most sustainable development potential in the Yangtze River Delta. It has been awarded the title of 2008 Habitat Scroll of Honor of China, Special UN Habitat Scroll of Honor Award and National Civilized City. Nanjing boasts many high-quality universities and research institutes, with the number of universities listed in 100 National Key Universities ranking third, including Nanjing University which has a long history and is among the world top 10 universities ranked by Nature Index; the ratio of college students to total population ranks No.1 among large cities nationwide. Nanjing is one of the top three Chinese scientific research centers, according to the Nature Index strong in the chemical sciences. Nanjing, one of the nation's most important cities for over a thousand years, is recognized as one of the Four Great Ancient Capitals of China.
It has been one of the world's largest cities, enjoying peace and prosperity despite wars and disasters. Nanjing served as the capital of Eastern Wu, one of the three major states in the Three Kingdoms period; the city served as the seat of the rebel Taiping Heavenly Kingdom and the Japanese puppet regime of Wang Jingwei during the Second Sino-Japanese War. It suffered severe atrocities including the Nanjing Massacre. Nanjing has served as the capital city of Jiangsu province since the establishment of the People's Republic of China, it boasts many important heritage sites, including the Presidential Palace and Sun Yat-sen Mausoleum. Nanjing is famous for human historical landscapes and waters such as Fuzimiao, Ming Palace, Chaotian Palace, Porcelain Tower, Drum Tower, Stone City, City Wall, Qinhuai River, Xuanwu Lake and Purple Mountain. Key cultural facilities include Nanjing Museum and Nanjing Art Museum; the city has a number of other names, some historical names are now used as names of districts of the city.
When it was the capital of a state, for instance during the ROC, Jing was adopted as the abbreviation of Nanjing. The city first became a Chinese national capital as early as the Jin dynasty; the name Nanjing, which means "Southern Capital", was designated for the city during the Ming dynasty, about six hundred years later. Nanjing is known as Jinling or Ginling and the old name has been used since the Warring States period in the Zhou dynasty. Archaeological discovery shows. Zun, a kind of wine vessel, was found to exist in Beiyinyangying culture of Nanjing in about 5000 years ago. In the late period of Shang dynasty, Taibo of Zhou came to Jiangnan and established Wu state, the first stop is in Nanjing area according to some historians based on discoveries in Taowu and Hushu culture. According to a legend quoted by an artist in Ming dynasty, Chen Yi, King of the State of Wu, founded a fort named Yecheng in today's Nanjing area in 495 BC. In 473 BC, the State of Yue conquered Wu and constructed the fort of Yuecheng on the outskirts of the present-day Zhonghua Gate.
In 333 BC, after eliminating the State of Yue, the State of Chu built Jinling Yi in the western part of present-day Nanjing. It was renamed Moling during reign of Qin Shi Huang. Since the city experienced destruction and renewal many times; the area was successively part of Kuaiji and Danyang prefectures in Qin and Han dynasty, part of Yangzhou region, established as the nation's 13 supervisory and administrative regions in the 5th year of Yuanfeng in Han dynasty. Nanjing was the capital city of Danyang Prefecture, had been the capital city of Yangzhou for about 400 years from late Han to early Tang. Nanjing first became a state capital in AD 229, when the state of Eastern
Iquique is a port city and commune in northern Chile, capital of both the Iquique Province and Tarapacá Region. It lies on the Pacific coast, west of the Pampa del Tamarugal, part of the Atacama Desert, it had a population of 191,468 according to the 2017 census. It is the main commune of Greater Iquique; the city developed during the heyday of the saltpetre mining in the Atacama Desert in the 19th century. Once a Peruvian city with a large Chilean population, it was conquered by Chile in the War of the Pacific. Today it is one of only two free ports of Chile, the other one being Punta Arenas, in the country's far south. Although the city was founded in the 16th century, there is evidence of habitation in the area by the Chango people as early as 7,000 BC. During colonial times, Iquique was part of the Viceroyalty of Peru as much of South America was at the time, remained part of Peruvian territory until the end of the 19th century. Iquique's early development was due in large part to the discovery of mineral riches the presence of large deposits of sodium nitrate in the Atacama Desert.
In July 1835, Charles Darwin, during his voyage on the Beagle, traveled to Iquique and described it as a town "very much in want of everyday necessities, such as water and firewood". These necessities had to be brought in from considerable distances. Darwin visited the saltpeter works; the city has been devastated by several earthquakes, including the 1868 Arica earthquake, the 1877 Iquique earthquake, the 2005 Tarapacá earthquake. The 2014 Iquique earthquake occurred with a moment magnitude of 8.2 on April 1, 2014. Territorial disputes between Bolivia and Chile triggered the War of the Pacific in 1879; the Battle of Iquique was fought in the harbor of Iquique on May 21, 1879, now commemorated as Navy Day, an annual public holiday in Chile. The outcome of the war gave Chile this portion of the Peruvian territory. Over the years there was substantial emigration from other parts of Chile to this area, called the Norte Grande. In subsequent years the further exportation of Chilean saltpeter helped in the development of the city, attracting foreigners and expanding housing projects.
In December 1907, the city was marred by the Santa María de Iquique Massacre when the Chilean Army, under the command of Gen. Roberto Silva Renard, opened fire on thousands of saltpeter miners, their wives and children, who assembled inside the Santa María School; the workers had marched into town to protest their working wages. Somewhere between 500 and 2,000 people were killed; the folk group Quilapayún recorded an album in remembrance of the event in 1970. In December 2007 a series of cultural and ceremonial activities were planned, culminating in the week between December 14 to 21, to commemorate the centenary year of the massacre. Mars 96 launched by Russia in 1996, but failed to leave Earth orbit, re-entered the atmosphere a few hours later; the two RTGs onboard carried in total 200 g of plutonium and are assumed to have survived reentry as they were designed to do. They are thought to now lie somewhere in a northeast-southwest running oval 320 km long by 80 km wide, centred 32 km east of Iquique, Chile.
Prior to becoming Chilean territory, Iquique was home to some of the greatest Peruvian heroes, namely Alfonso Ugarte, Ramon Zavala, a rich saltpeter entrepreneur. As a commune, Iquique is a third-level administrative division of Chile administered by a municipal council, headed by an alcalde, directly elected every four years; the 2012–2016 alcalde is Jorge Soria. Within the electoral divisions of Chile, Iquique is represented in the Chamber of Deputies by Mrs. Marta Isasi and Mr. Hugo Gutiérrez as part of the 2nd electoral district, which includes the entire Tarapacá Region; the commune is represented in the Senate by Fulvio Rossi Ciocca and Jaime Orpis Bouchon as part of the 1st senatorial constituency. Iquique has one of the largest duty-free commercial port centers of South America, the Zona Franca of Iquique, traditionally called Zofri. There are around 2.4 square kilometres of warehouses, banking branches, restaurants. Copper mining in Quebrada Blanca, Cerro Colorado, Doña Inés de Collahuasí, is an important industry in Iquique.
According to the 2002 census of National Statistics Institute, the commune of Iquique had an area of 2,835.3 km2 and 216,419 inhabitants. Of these, 214,586 lived in 1,833 in rural areas; the township has a population of 166,204 inhabitants. The population grew by 42.7 % between the 2002 censuses. Iquique is home to 56% of the total population of the Tarapacá region. In 2008, the city had 226,204 habitants. Iquique commune is divided into the following districts: There is a significant percentage of ethnic group colony residents; the most numerous communities are Croatian, Greek, Arabic nationalities and Bolivians, British peoples, the French. In the 1910s and 1920s, about a thousand East Indian
Marl, North Rhine-Westphalia
Marl is a town and a municipality in the district of Recklinghausen, in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. It is situated near approx. 10 km north-west of Recklinghausen. It has about 90,000 people; the town adjoins in the north to the natural park Hohe Mark. The town forms the smooth transition between the rural Münsterland; the northern town border coincides nearly with the course of the river Lippe. 60% of the total town area are fields, watercourses and other green areas. Marl has the following urban districts: In the north Marl adjoins to Haltern am See, in the east to Oer-Erkenschwick, in the southeast to Recklinghausen, in the south to Herten, in the southwest to Gelsenkirchen and in the west to Dorsten. Braucksenke Die Burg Lippeau Loemühlenbachtal The town area was populated in the old and middle Stone Age, as many archeological finds in the district of Sinsen confirm. Remains of the first settlements are dated to 600 BC. At 300 BC Celtic tribes were expelled by invading Germanic tribes; the Brukterer controlled thereupon the area north of the river Lippe and the Marser lived south of the Lippe.
The Germanic invasion was stopped by the advance of the Romans. Remains of a smaller Roman fort were found at the city limit between Herten. After the Battle of the teutoburg forest in 9AC the Romans lost most of their influence and retreated behind the Rhine river; the area was again in Germanic possession. In 80 AC the Brukterer were expelled by rival tribes and moved to the today’s area of Recklinghausen; the next migration movement took place in the Marl area between the 5th and 7th century, when the Saxons invaded from the northeast across the Lippe into the former Brukterer area. In the 1920th archeological excavations proofed, that the Brukterer built a circular hillfort in the district of Sinsen to defend against the Saxon attacks. Today the hillfort is only recognisable for the expert and lies in the nature reserve "Die Burg", named after the hillfort. Archeologists consider the hillfort as an outstanding historical monument, worth of protection; the hillfort was used by the rural population as a protective barrier until the Late Middle Ages.
Assured written regional facts about the Early Middle Ages in the 9th and 10th century were however not documented till the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century. Marl was first documented in 890 in the urbarium of the benedictine abbey of Werden, founded in 799 during the Saxon wars. There is written, that a Dagubraht donated his possession and revenues to the abbey for his salvation; the name of Marl derives from the medieval place name "meronhlare". Linguists interpreted this name as "marshy range" or "range at a pond"; the name changed over the centuries from "Marlar", "Maerl" to "Marler" and Marl In the urbarium are furthermore found the names of nearby settlements which became part of the town. They were called "Threviri". In addition to the Werden Abbey there were other great land owners as the Cologne and Xanten chapter, the Essen abbey and some nobles; this scattered property caused massive feuds and fighting in the Middle Ages. In the urban district of "Alt-Marl" stands St George's Church, which in the 11th century belonged to the local Count Balderich of the Lower Rhine.
He gave the church to Archbishop Heribert of Cologne. A manuscript dating from 1160 states. In the 13th century it became a parish church, the appointment of its first priest being recorded in 1228. From 1419 the church was under the patronage of the local noble family of Loe; this lasted until 1830. Between 1856 and 1859 the church was restored, to plans drawn up by Emil von Manger, a builder employed by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Münster; the church's Romanesque foundation walls dating from the 12th century were retained in the restoration. In the year 1111 the noble family of Loe built a castle with a moat named "Strevelsloe". In 1359 it was renamed to "Haus Loe". In official manuscripts of 1373 it was named as "castrum". In 1378 the castle was signed over as an "Offenhaus" by the owner Wessel van Loe to the Archbishop of Cologne, Frederick III. of Saarwerden. "Offenhaus" means. So the noble family of Loe was subject to the archbishop; the family had many properties in the region, several farms and mills, like the "Loemill", the "Sickingmill" and the Wermeling manor at the Lippe river.
Although the Loe-family had no male successor, the name lived on as in 1585 the daughter of Wolter van Loe married her cousin Baron Dietrich of Dorneburg-Loe from Eickel. From 1705 to 1832 the castle and all properties were passed over to the noble Family of Wiedenbrück, they sold it to the baron of Twickel. 30 years it was sold to the Duke of Arenberg, who demolished the castle. Today on the former site of the castle there is several sports grounds; the noble Loe-family is borne in remembrance through several names like "Loe Street", "Grammar school at the Loefield" or "Loemill-Airport". Throughout the Middle Ages Marl was involved in several wars. Between 1243 and 1384 there were many military operations between the Archbishop of Cologne and the Count of Mark among other things about the possession of the neighbor town of Recklinghausen. 1388 and 1389 Marl was involved in the "Great Dortmund feud" and
Buenos Aires is the capital and largest city of Argentina. The city is located on the western shore of the estuary of the Río de la Plata, on the South American continent's southeastern coast. "Buenos Aires" can be translated as "fair winds" or "good airs", but the former was the meaning intended by the founders in the 16th century, by the use of the original name "Real de Nuestra Señora Santa María del Buen Ayre". The Greater Buenos Aires conurbation, which includes several Buenos Aires Province districts, constitutes the fourth-most populous metropolitan area in the Americas, with a population of around 15.6 million. The city of Buenos Aires is the Province's capital. In 1880, after decades of political infighting, Buenos Aires was federalized and removed from Buenos Aires Province; the city limits were enlarged to include the towns of Flores. The 1994 constitutional amendment granted the city autonomy, hence its formal name: Autonomous City of Buenos Aires, its citizens first elected a chief of government in 1996.
Buenos Aires is considered an'alpha city' by the study GaWC5. Buenos Aires' quality of life was ranked 91st in the world, being one of the best in Latin America in 2018, it is the most visited city in South America, the second-most visited city of Latin America. Buenos Aires is a top tourist destination, is known for its preserved Eclectic European architecture and rich cultural life. Buenos Aires held the 1st Pan American Games in 1951 as well as hosting two venues in the 1978 FIFA World Cup. Buenos Aires hosted the 2018 the 2018 G20 summit. Buenos Aires is a multicultural city, being home to multiple religious groups. Several languages are spoken in the city in addition to Spanish, contributing to its culture and the dialect spoken in the city and in some other parts of the country; this is because in the last 150 years the city, the country in general, has been a major recipient of millions of immigrants from all over the world, making it a melting pot where several ethnic groups live together and being considered one of the most diverse cities of the Americas.
It is recorded under the archives of Aragonese that Catalan missionaries and Jesuits arriving in Cagliari under the Crown of Aragon, after its capture from the Pisans in 1324 established their headquarters on top of a hill that overlooked the city. The hill was known to them as Bonaira, as it was free of the foul smell prevalent in the old city, adjacent to swampland. During the siege of Cagliari, the Catalans built a sanctuary to the Virgin Mary on top of the hill. In 1335, King Alfonso the Gentle donated the church to the Mercedarians, who built an abbey that stands to this day. In the years after that, a story circulated, claiming that a statue of the Virgin Mary was retrieved from the sea after it miraculously helped to calm a storm in the Mediterranean Sea; the statue was placed in the abbey. Spanish sailors Andalusians, venerated this image and invoked the "Fair Winds" to aid them in their navigation and prevent shipwrecks. A sanctuary to the Virgin of Buen Ayre would be erected in Seville.
In the first foundation of Buenos Aires, Spanish sailors arrived thankfully in the Río de la Plata by the blessings of the "Santa Maria de los Buenos Aires", the "Holy Virgin Mary of the Good Winds", said to have given them the good winds to reach the coast of what is today the modern city of Buenos Aires. Pedro de Mendoza called the city "Holy Mary of the Fair Winds", a name suggested by the chaplain of Mendoza's expedition – a devotee of the Virgin of Buen Ayre – after the Sardinian Madonna de Bonaria. Mendoza's settlement soon came under attack by indigenous people, was abandoned in 1541. For many years, the name was attributed to a Sancho del Campo, said to have exclaimed: How fair are the winds of this land!, as he arrived. But Eduardo Madero, in 1882 after conducting extensive research in Spanish archives concluded that the name was indeed linked with the devotion of the sailors to Our Lady of Buen Ayre. A second settlement was established in 1580 by Juan de Garay, who sailed down the Paraná River from Asunción.
Garay preserved the name chosen by Mendoza, calling the city Ciudad de la Santísima Trinidad y Puerto de Santa María del Buen Aire. The short form "Buenos Aires" became the common usage during the 17th century; the usual abbreviation for Buenos Aires in Spanish is Bs. As, it is common as well to refer to it as "B. A." or "BA". While "BA" is used more by expats residing in the city, the locals more use the abbreviation "Baires", in one word. Seaman Juan Díaz de Solís, navigating in the name of Spain, was the first European to reach the Río de la Plata in 1516, his expedition was cut short when he was killed during an attack by the native Charrúa tribe in what is now Uruguay. The city of Buenos Aires was first established as Ciudad de Nuestra Señora Santa María del Buen Ayre after Our Lady of Bonaria on 2 February 1536 by a Spanish expedition led by Pedro de Mendoza; the settlement founded by Mendoza was located in what is today the San Telmo district of Buenos Aires, south of the city centre. More attacks by the indigenous
Roller skates are shoes, or bindings that fit onto shoes, that are worn to enable the wearer to roll along on wheels. The first roller skate was an ice skate with wheels replacing the blade; the "quad" style of roller skate became more popular consisting of four wheels arranged in the same configuration as a typical car. While the first reported use of roller skates was on a London stage in 1743, the first patented roller skate was introduced in 1760 by Belgian inventor John Joseph Merlin, his roller skate wasn't much more than an ice skate with wheels where the blade goes, a style we would call inline today. They were hard to steer and hard to stop because they didn't have brakes and, as such, were not popular; the initial "test piloting" of the first prototype of the skate was in the city of Huy, which had a party with Merlin playing the violin. In the 1840s, Meyerbeer's Opera, Le prophète featured a scene in which performers used roller-skates to simulate ice-skating on a frozen lake set on stage.
The result was to popularize roller skating throughout the Continent. As ice skaters subsequently developed the art of figure skating, roller skaters wanted the ability to turn in their skates in a similar fashion. In 1863, James Plimpton from Massachusetts invented the "rocking" skate and used a four-wheel configuration for stability, independent axles that turned by pressing to one side of the skate or the other when the skater wants to create an edge; this was a vast improvement on the Merlin design, easier to use and drove the huge popularity of roller skating, dubbed "rinkomania" in the 1860s and 1870s, which spread to Europe and around the world, continued through the 1930s. The Plimpton skate is still used today. Roller skating evolved from just a pastime to a competitive sport. In the mid 1990s roller hockey, played with a ball rather than a puck, became so popular that it made an appearance in the Olympics in 1992; the National Sporting Goods Association statistics showed, from a 1999 study, that 2.5 million people played roller hockey.
Roller Skating has never become an Olympic event. Other roller skating sports include roller derby. Roller skating popularity tapered off in the 80s and 90s; the Roller Skating Rink Operators Association was developed in the U. S in 1937, it is named the Roller Skating Association. The association promotes roller skating and offers classes to the public, aiming to educate the population about roller skating; the current president is Bobby Pender. The Roller Skating Association headquarters is located in Indianapolis; the Roller Skating Association's web page offers some health benefits of roller skating. Some of the benefits they list include: Providing a complete aerobic workout Burning 330 calories per hour while skating 6 miles per hour for a 143-pound person or 600 calories while skating 10 miles per hour. A study from the University of Massachusetts found that in-line skating causes less than 50% of the impact shock to joints compared to running. Roller skating is equivalent to jogging in terms of health benefits The American Heart Association recommends roller skating as an aerobic fitness sport.
Roller skating Inline skates Ice skates Roller shoe "How Rink Rollers Are Made", by George W. Waltz – November 1951 article on how roller skates are manufactured Court Case Brought by Roller Skating Rinks About Taxes History of Roller Skating In Canada homepage for USA Roller Sports Roller Skating Museum
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