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Germany

The German territories were originally occupied by the Celts who were uprooted by Germanic tribes that arrived around 2nd century BC. Where the Romans were unsuccessful in their attempts to take the region, Charlemagne succeeded, and incorporated the various tribes into his vast empire. The treaty of Verdun of 843 gave birth  to the Kingdom of Germany. Control over the kingdom gradually passed into the hands of the powerful nobility, until the weakened Carolingian family was extinct. The Saxons renewed the empire of Charlemagne, claiming a continuation or succession of the Roman Empire (Holy Roman Empire), centring on Germany and northern Italy. The turbulent relationships bewteen the emperors and the Papacy, combined with the rise of Protestantism, contributed to the eventual demise of the empire. The various German states were unified into the German Empire in 1862, only to be dissolved in 1918 after its defeat in World War I. It was replaced with the Weimar Republic in 1919, which in turn was superseded by the Third Reich. World War II devastated Germany and left it occupied by the victorious Allied powers of the US, UK, France, and the Soviet Union in 1945. With the advent of the Cold War, two German states were formed in 1949: the western Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) and the eastern German Democratic Republic (GDR). The democratic FRG embedded itself in key western economic and security organizations, the EC (now the EU) and NATO, while the communist GDR was on the front line of the Soviet-led Warsaw Pact. The decline of the USSR and the end of the Cold War allowed for German reunification in 1990. Since then, Germany has expended considerable funds to bring eastern productivity and wages up to western standards. As Europe's largest economy and second most populous nation (after Russia), Germany is a key member of the continent's economic, political, and defence organisations. In January 1999, Germany and 10 other EU countries introduced a common European exchange currency, the euro.

Location: Central Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea and the North Sea, between the Netherlands and Poland, south of Denmark.

 
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Flags of Germany

 

National Flag

 


Maps of Germany

 

    

 


 

 



 

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