France (French: [fs] (About this soundlisten)), officially the French Republic (French: Rpublique franaise, pronounced [epyblik fsz] (About this soundlisten)), is a country whose territory consists of metropolitan France in Western Europe and several overseas regions and territories.[XIII] The metropolitan area of France extends from the Mediterranean Sea to the English Channel and the North Sea, and from the Rhine to the Atlantic Ocean. It is bordered by Belgium, Luxembourg and Germany to the northeast, Switzerland and Italy to the east, and Andorra and Spain to the south. The overseas territories increase French Guiana in South America and several islands in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans. The country’s 18 integral regions (five of which are situated overseas) span a whole place of 643,801 square kilometres (248,573 sq mi) and a total population of 67.02 million (as of July 2019). France is a unitary semi-presidential republic behind its capital in Paris, the country’s largest city and main cultural and billboard centre. additional major urban areas augment Lyon, Marseille, Toulouse, Bordeaux, Lille and Nice.
During the Iron Age, what is now metropolitan France was inhabited by the Gauls, a Celtic people. Rome annexed the place in 51 BC, holding it until the initiation of Germanic Franks in 476, who formed the Kingdom of Francia. The unity of Verdun of 843 partitioned Francia into East Francia, middle Francia and West Francia. West Francia, which became the Kingdom of France in 987, emerged as a major European knack in the tardy middle Ages, in imitation of its victory in the Hundred Years’ conflict (13371453). 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 in the midst of Catholics and Protestants (Huguenots). France became Europe’s dominant cultural, political, and military skill in the 17th century below Louis XIV. In the late 18th century, the French lawlessness overthrew the absolute monarchy, establishing one of avant-garde history’s antediluvian republics and drafting the statement of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, which expresses the nation’s ideals to this day.
In the 19th century, Napoleon took facility and standard the First French Empire. His subsequent Napoleonic Wars (180315) shaped the course of continental Europe. once the collapse of the Empire, France endured a tumultuous concurrence of governments culminating as soon as the instigation of the French Third Republic in 1870. France was a major participant in World court case I, from which it emerged victorious, and was one of the Allies in World act II, but came under motion by the Axis powers in 1940. gone liberation in 1944, a Fourth Republic was expected and progressive dissolved in the course of the Algerian War. The Fifth Republic, led by Charles de Gaulle, was formed in 1958 and remains today. Algeria and nearly every the new colonies became independent in the 1960s, afterward most retaining close economic and military links next France.
France has long been a global middle of art, science, and philosophy. It hosts the world’s fourth-largest number of UNESCO World descent Sites and is the leading tourist destination, receiving a propos 83 million foreign visitors annually. France is a developed country afterward the world’s sixth-largest economy by nominal GDP, and tenth-largest by purchasing capacity parity. In terms of aggregate household wealth, it ranks fourth in the world. France performs without difficulty in international rankings of education, health care, moving picture expectancy, and human development. France is considered a good aptitude in global affairs, instinctive one of the five unshakable members of the united Nations Security Council behind the knack to veto and an credited nuclear-weapon state. It is a leading advocate come clean of the European bond and the Eurozone, and a zealot of the action of 7, North Atlantic agreement giving out (NATO), Organisation for Economic Co-operation and onslaught (OECD), the World Trade organization (WTO), and La Francophonie.
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