July 1, 2022

France (French France [fʀɑ̃s]), the full name of the French Republic (French République française [ʀepyblik fʀɑ̃sɛz]), is a country whose majority of territory (sometimes referred to as metropolitan France) is located in Western Europe. The French Republic also includes the so-called overseas France, which includes territories in the Caribbean, North and South America, the Indian Ocean and Oceania. The French often call metropolitan France l'Hexagone (hexagon) because of its geographical shape. The island of Corsica also belongs to France. Metropolitan France extends from the Mediterranean Sea in the south to the English Channel and the North Sea in the north, from the Rhine in the east to the Atlantic Ocean in the west. It borders Belgium and Luxembourg in the north, Germany in the northeast, Switzerland and Italy in the east, and Andorra, Monaco and Spain in the south. France has a population of 67 million (65 million metropolitan France) and is thus the fourth most populous country in Europe and the second most populous country in the European Union (after Germany). It is the largest EU country in terms of area. The French economy is the sixth largest in the world in terms of nominal gross domestic product (GDP) and the tenth largest in terms of GDP in purchasing power parity. France is a member of the North Atlantic Alliance and is one of the founding members of the European Union and the United Nations. He is one of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council with a veto, one of the eight recognized nuclear powers and a member of the G8 association of the world's eight most advanced nations. France is also a member of the eurozone. The political system has parliamentary-democratic, republican and semi-presidential. The capital Paris is not only the commercial and cultural center of France, but especially in the past it was the world's main center of art and thought. Thanks to this, today it is the seat of a number of international organizations such as the OECD, UNESCO, Interpol, etc. Other major cities are Lyon, Marseille, Toulouse, Bordeaux, Lille and Nice. French culture, philosophy and French history strongly influenced the whole of Europe (especially the Hundred Years' War, the Great French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars). Together with the United Kingdom, France is the only colonial power that still exists. In the 19th century, the French colonial empire was the second largest in the world (after the British). France has traditionally placed great emphasis on the protection and promotion of the French language and maintains close ties with other francophone countries and regions of the world.

Origin of the French nation

Although France is usually perceived as a united nation-state, looking at France's early history, it is clear that, in the words of André Mauroise, "a kind of French race never existed." The French are characterized by a very diverse ethnic background, which, like their history, is the result of many influences. Throughout its history, France has experienced a number of waves of immigration (which is also characteristic of present-day France). This fact is more evident in the awareness of France's geographical location on the western edge of the European continent. Under her influence, France was a place where invasions stopped and invaders settled. Moreover, although today's France has natural borders, historically it has not been a closed whole. From the beginning of history, various nations have met on its territory - Celts, Greeks, Romans, Germans, Franks, Normans, Jews, Spaniards, Portuguese, Italians, Algerians and many others. The most significant traces in the history of France were left by the influences of the Gauls (which was the part of the Celts who settled in France), the Romans and the Franks, while the first two merged at the turn of the millennium and the third gave France its name. Access to immigrants in France was almost exclusively assimilative, which means that