Category: Europe

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Turkey Arts and Music

Turkey Arts and Music


According to TOPSCHOOLSINTHEUSA, the most ancient products of Turkish art are goldsmiths and gold trimmings, already in use before the Christian era among the populations of the regions close to the Altai: they are generally called Scythians (fibulae etc., in the shape of stylized animals, worked cantilever). Textile art soon reached artistic level, both in the canvases for the decoration of the curtains and in the carpets. It is in these two fields that Turkey has made the greatest contribution to Islamic art, bringing a strong tendency to decoration since the 9th century. and with greater force from the 11th (➔ islam). In the Ottoman period, art and architecture were able to merge the experiences of previous eras by expressing themselves in original ways (➔ Ottoman, Empire).

The opening towards the West began in the 19th century. with the development, in painting, of new genres for Turkish culture (landscape, still life, study of the human figure): to remember Ahmet Paşa and S. Seyyit and above all O. Hamdi, director since 1881 of the Ottoman Imperial Museum and of Academy, founded in 1883 in İstanbul, the city leads even after the creation of the republic. The Association of Ottoman Painters, since 1917 Association of Turkish Painters, of which N. Güran was a member, with the magazine Naşir-i Efkâr («Promoter of ideas»), organized exhibitions, from 1923, also in Ankara. In 1933, group D, founded by N. Berk, was at the forefront of the avant-garde in Turkey while an interesting project sent artists to the various provinces.

In addition to cultural events such as the International Biennial of İstanbul and the Asia-Europe Biennial of Ankara, an important role in supporting contemporary art in Turkey has been played by both private galleries and institutions and exhibition centers such as the Center for Contemporary Art BM (1984) and the Museum of Contemporary Art (1992) in İstanbul. The attention to western expressive modes, from abstraction to pop art, from minimalism to conceptual art, and at the same time a recovery of tradition and the exploration of the border between East and West, have marked the research of the second half of the 20th century. . Influential personalities are A. Coker, A. Gürman. They have maintained a link with tradition, through the art of calligraphy, N. Okyay and H. Aytac, transmitted to the younger A. Alpaslan and H. Çelebi. K. Önsoy works in the field of material-gestural experiences; A. Öktem, E. Aksel, S. Kiraz are linked to conceptual researches, while M. Morova expresses himself through painting, collage and installation. H. Tenger creates committed installations, involved in contemporary reality; E. Ersen creates complex works, including photography, video, installation and action. He works in the field of video art Ö. Ali Kazma. In the use of advanced technologies and net art we remember G. Incirlioğlu, architect and photographer;, an acronym born in 2000 as an Internet initiative, uses the world wide web for artistic projects, and is open to anonymous external contributions.

In architecture, the opening to modernism and avant-garde languages, also initiated by the presence of R. D’Aronco in İstanbul, was accentuated with the Turkish Republic through the activity of architects such as C. Holzmeister, H. Poelzig, B. Taut, P. Bonatz. Among the Turkish architects active at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, SH Eldem emerges who, despite being influenced by Western ways, felt the need for a national language. Of the following generations we remember Turkey Cansever and B. Cinici, while among the younger ones we can distinguish H. Tumertekin and Studio GAD.


Turkish musical theory is based on an articulated scale in a profoundly different way from the European one, which identifies within 24 sounds (derived from the 24 keys of the main Turkish instrument, a lute called tanbur) and distinguishes a hundred modes on this basis. Cultured secular music is closely linked to the Arab tradition. Sacred music is divided into three basic genres: Ilahi, the hymns for the various months of the Muslim year, Tevchic (praises of the Prophet), Ayni Cherif, repertoire of dervishes. A singular aspect of the relationship between Turkish and European music is the popularity it had in Europe towards the end of the 18th century. the music of the Janissaries (the bodyguards of the sultans), with its characteristic percussion instruments (triangles, drums, cymbals): called Turkish, was the object of imitation or at least of allusion by numerous composers, including WA Mozart and L. van Beethoven. The creation of a Turkish national school is mainly due to a series of composers born in the first decade of the 20th century. and mainly trained in Paris and Vienna, such as DR Rey, UD Erkin, AA Saygun, NK Akses, F. Alnar. More recently, N. Kodalli, F. Tüzün, I. Baran, M. Su. A national conservatory was founded in İstanbul in 1915, which was later joined by some major musical institutions such as the İstanbul Municipal Theater and the Ankara State Theater.

Turkey MUSIC

Norway History – from 1536 to 1814

Norway History – from 1536 to 1814

In the period from 1536 to 1814 the modern state was built in Norway. Little by little the king transformed the feudal government into a royal administration, imposing on the feudatars conditions that were advantageous for the state; many small fiefdoms were reunited into large feudal dominions (later administrative districts), and free fiefdoms were transformed into fiefdoms that had to pay taxes and duties or had to make accounts. With the establishment of the hereditary monarchy, the transformation found its absolute fulfillment in Denmark and Norway, in 1660. The fiefdoms were transformed into provinces, amter, and the feudal lords became prefects (amtmenn) with a fixed salary, without military authority in the districts. The council of the Danish kingdom, which, since 1536, had also been involved in Norwegian affairs, was dissolved: the king had only powerful cabinet ministers around him, exercising absolute power himself. With the Reformation, all the ecclesiastical properties were confiscated by the crown, what served to give the state that secure economic basis which it had previously lacked; during the sec. XVII, and partly also during the XVIII, that enormous quantity of assets ended up by means of sales in the hands of private individuals and procured liquid capital for the state. At the same time ordinary state revenues increased with a series of new taxes, and customs revenues increased with ever-increasing trade. The power of the state became much greater and extended more and more into new fields. The reconstituted state defended itself externally with a strong army and a strong fleet, formed by the recruitment of peasants and citizens belonging to the lower classes, and maintained with the revenues of the kingdom.

According to topschoolsintheusa, the central administration, collegially ordered, was common to Denmark and Norway, since the admitted principle of the government was that the two kingdoms should form a unitary state, and be governed as such. The Norwegian crown council disappeared in 1536 without being formally dissolved and without any Norwegians taking a seat in the Danish one. After 1660 the colleges of government became common to both states and so did the Supreme Court, the university, the bank of issue and all the other state institutions that were gradually established. The highest officials in Norway were as a rule Danish and generally the body of officials in Norway consisted of a large number of Danes, while numerous Norwegians held offices in Denmark. The highest official in Norway from 1572 was a governor (statholder) Danish, although generally with little personal authority. When communications between Norway and Denmark were interrupted in wartime, temporary Norwegian governmental bodies were established, as Norway was always regarded as a constituted unit, a kingdom. When war broke out in 1807, Norway had its own Governing Commission, and a number of other central Norwegian bodies. All were liquidated during 1810, but as the situation became critical again in 1813, the governor Prince Christian Federico was conferred personal power of government.

Also in this period of the 16th-18th centuries, the Norwegian national economy was rebuilt on a new base and had a great development. The woods were better exploited with the use of the hydraulic saw (circa 1520) and the export of timber became a major source of Norwegian income. A series of mines and iron foundries were opened from the beginning of the century. XVI, of silver and copper from about 1620 (Kongsberg, Røros). With the use of new tools, deep sea fishing brought rich profits. Cultivation of the land also progressed, albeit more slowly. The cultivation system remained almost the same, with extensive cultivation, despite the introduction of new plants (the potato from about 1750, herbs and fruit), but the colonization of new lands increased, especially following the

The population in 1570 was about 400,000, about 730,000 in 1769, about 900,000 in 1801. The development of new industries and trade considerably increased internal and foreign exchanges. Norwegian shipping was reorganized so that ships flying the national flag first became masters of the ever-increasing national imports and exports (1600-1750) and later that they were also used on a large scale for maritime traffic between foreign nations. From 1793 to 1807 Norway enjoyed extraordinary prosperity. Most of the new economy was based on the concentration of capital, and the bourgeois of the cities made the greatest profit. Cities and bourgeois were favored by the authorities of the state with privileges and monopolies. All commercial legislation until 1770 was marked by mercantilism, until the liberal idea slowly began to make its way. A noticeable change in economic policy is signaled by the customs laws of 1796.

After 1660 the nobility ceases to exist, and the bourgeoisie rises to domination as a result of its wealth and its relations with foreign countries. The bourgeoisie represented European culture in Norway, and most of the officials came from the bourgeoisie. The peasants were greatly exploited: they were forced, for example, to lend their work in the mines at a wage imposed by the government; moreover, the freedom of industry and commerce was in many ways restricted in favor of the cities and the bourgeoisie. Many peasants, being indebted to the bourgeois, found themselves in a state of dependence. Nevertheless, the peasants in Norway enjoyed much greater freedom in comparison with the bourgeoisie and officials than in any other country, since for the most part they owned the farms they cultivated.

The relatively secure economic position of the peasants gave them a need for independence which later constituted a force in the country’s history. This period also marks great progress for the farmers of Norway.

As the Norwegians gained greater wealth and independence, discontent grew over Norway’s subordinate position vis-à-vis Denmark. The bourgeoisie, in which the national movement had its strongest roots, demanded for Norway its own colleges of government, its own university, its own bank of issue, its own fleet; the peasants asked for Norwegian officials who knew the conditions of the country. There was also an economic contrast between Denmark and Norway, since Norway’s foreign trade was essentially linked to England, while that of Denmark to Germany, France and North America.

In 1807 this contrast, fatal to Norwegian trade, gave rise to the need for a separate Norwegian foreign policy.

The government resisted Norwegian aspirations, thinking they were against the unitary state. However, a series of restrictions on industries and trade was lifted, the Danish monopoly on the import of wheat in southern Norway was lifted; Norway finally had a university (Cristiania, 1811), but, all in all, the government continued the unitary policy until 1814. A real action against this policy, with the aim of bringing about the end of the union, was taken after the 1807 under the leadership of Count Herman Wedel Jalsberg. The government, to reconcile the Norwegians, made a generally milder tax policy for the people than was the one followed in Denmark. Especially after 1770 the taxes were generally not very burdensome in comparison with the possibilities of payment.

Norway History - from 1536 to 1814

Spain – The New Leader

Spain – The New Leader

All that remains is to draw a summary profile of the new socialist leader. Born in Valladolid in 1960 and raised in the bosom of a family of socialist traditions (one of his grandparents, a soldier, was shot by Franco’s troops), José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero appears as a man as mild and gentle in his features as he is determined in the defense of principles he believes in. Elected as a deputy at the age of twenty-six in the 1986 general elections, he was always confirmed in subsequent elections. Winning result for a handful of votes on the competitor, José Bono, on 22 July 2000 at the end of the 35th Socialist Congress, at the head of the current called Nueva vía formed by a group of young deputies intolerant of the protection of the historical leaders of Spanish socialism, Rodríguez Zapatero came directly from the party to Moncloa, without having administrative experience of any kind. From his rise to the top of the party, the only moment of difficulty was experienced in June 2003, when, after the elections won in the Autonomous Community of Madrid, the defection of some newly elected members of the PSOE led to new elections on 26 October and the reversal of the result that had been obtained a few months earlier.

In the context of European socialism, Rodríguez Zapatero appears destined to occupy a space of his own, as distant from Blair as regards the international vision and Europe, as far as French socialism as regards the role of the state. Some saw in his speeches and programs glare of the positions that the philosopher Philip Pettit of Irish politics has handed in his Republicanism (trad. It. Republicanism.

A theory of freedom and government, Milan, Feltrinelli, 2000; and. orig., 1997). Others have embroidered starting from a declaration by the same socialist leader who defined his own as a ‘libertarian socialism’. Of socialism de los ciudadanos (of citizens, or perhaps better, of citizenship) Rodríguez Zapatero also spoke on 4 July 2004, in the closing speech at the 36th Congress of the PSOE, listing the ideas that make it up with these words: “The submission of governments and men to laws and laws only, rebellion against any type of domination, respect for the diversity of identities in our country, respect for the identity of the person and his rights, a concern for coexistence on a universal level, an effective equality between men and women, people’s growing rights in public life, the duty of collective participation, culture as a public virtue, secular society, a passion for knowledge, an effort for education and, of course,the radical condemnation of violence and wars “. To this he added as civil values ​​that socialists should practice” austerity, humility, love for freedom, concern for the fate of others, commitment, honesty, generosity. “But it is premature to establish kinship and affinity for a man who has a very small past to exhibit and, barring political unforeseen events, a lot of future to be filled with content.much future to be filled with content.much future to be filled with content.

As soon as the result of the elections was known, Rodríguez Zapatero confirmed the withdrawal of Spanish troops from Iraq, and then explained the reasons face to face, together with the general lines of what his foreign policy will be, in the first meetings with European leaders and world championships on March 24, on the occasion of the funeral of the victims of the attack. But it is in the investiture speech of April 15 that the socialist leader outlined the political lines of the future administration: limited reform of the Constitution (of the Senate, of the rules governing the succession to the throne, opening access also for women, inclusion in the text constitutional mention of an explicit mention to the 17 communities, to the two autonomous cities and to the Constitution of the European Union), withdrawal of troops from Iraq, Ley de calidad educativa, interventions to reduce insecurity in the world of work, a new housing policy, increase in minimum wages and pensions, recognition of the right of transsexuals and homosexuals to marry.

In the vote of confidence on April 16 Rodríguez Zapatero obtained 183 votes: in addition to the Socialists (164), the representatives of Esquerra Republicana de Catalunya (8), Izquierda unida (5), Coalición canaria (3), Bloque nacionalista galego voted in favor (2) and Chunta Aragonesista (1). Convergencia i unió (10), Partido nacionalista vasco (7), Eusko Alkartasuna (1), Nafarroa bai (1) abstained, while only the popular voted against (148).

He then formed a government of sixteen ministers, half of them women. Two vice-presidents: the minister to the presidency and spokesman for the government, María Teresa Fernández de la Vega and that of the economy and finance, Pedro Solbes. A brief examination of the team allows us to establish some characteristics. The average age is 50, Solbes being the oldest (62) and Juan Fernando López Aguilar, Minister of Justice, the youngest (43). As far as training is concerned, all, with one exception, come from legal or economic studies and several can boast studies in both fields. Some come from the second tier of university teaching, much more from the administration of the state or autonomous communities, others from previous political positions at national and international level, as the Minister of Economy and Finance, Solbes, formerly in the same department in the last cabinet of Felipe González (1993-96) and later Commissioner for Economic Affairs of the European Union, or as the Foreign Minister, Miguel Ángel Moratinos, former ambassador to Israel, later special envoy of the European Union for the peace process in the Middle East. Or, finally, from regional positions such as José Bono, new Minister of Defense and continuously in the presidency of the Community of Castilla-La Mancha since 1983, for six terms always with an absolute majority. former ambassador to Israel, later special envoy of the European Union for the peace process in the Middle East. Or, finally, from regional positions such as José Bono, new Minister of Defense and continuously in the presidency of the Community of Castilla-La Mancha since 1983, for six terms always with an absolute majority. former ambassador to Israel, later special envoy of the European Union for the peace process in the Middle East. Or, finally, from regional positions such as José Bono, new Minister of Defense and continuously in the presidency of the Community of Castilla-La Mancha since 1983, for six terms always with an absolute majority.

The regional origin varies, but with some gaps, as evidence of the not excessive weight assigned to geopolitics. Without sensational ruptures, but in significant discontinuity with respect to the last socialist government, the government structure appears willing both to make use of the undisputed experience gained by some women and some men on the domestic and international level, and to bet on women and men for first time put to the test. For Spain 2013, please check

On the international level, Rodríguez Zapatero’s first steps were, as mentioned, the withdrawal of troops from Iraq, a decision passed by the Congress of Deputies on May 13, 2004, with 185 votes in favor, four abstentions and only PP votes against. (141). In the meantime, the Spanish premier had already made a trip to Morocco and met Mohamed VI on 24 April, a clear sign of the desire to reverse the wall-to-wall attitude held by Aznar towards the country on the other side of the Strait of Gibraltar. He had also manifested on the one hand the desire to get closer to France and Germany, on the other hand that of pursuing an Ibero-American policy independent of Washington. In conclusion: it is a return to the wake of democratic Spain’s foreign policy before Aznar drastically diverted its course, in the aftermath of 11 September. Also with regard to the European Constitution, the new Spanish leader has expressed the desire to overcome the difficulties posed by Aznar in its launch.

No less significant are the first steps taken internally: launch of a round of consultations with all the presidents of the Autonomous Communities, announcement that the representatives of the neighboring Autonomous Communities will be invited to the bilateral summits with France and Portugal; demanded to the EU that Catalan, Euskera and Galician languages ​​obtain the legal recognition they still lack; acceptance of the projects for reforming the Statutes of autonomy and constitutional reform (Alfonso Guerra was elected as president of the Constitutional Commission of the Congress of Deputies, also with the popular vote); start of the reform of the public means of communication starting with the appointment of a commission of essays charged with formulating the proposals to modify the statute of the RTVE, which has been in force since 1980.

Internal problems will be the decisive test for the new socialist leader, who will have to be able to face and solve the complex national question that remains unresolved on the table a quarter of a century after the entry into force of the Constitution.. For the first time since the return of democracy and the creation of the autonomous state after Franco, there is a government similar to that of Madrid in Barcelona. For their part, after the first reactions dictated by bitterness, the popular took the blow and recognized the full legitimacy of the socialist victory. For the first time after many years from Moncloa, words of relaxation and dialogue on the Basque problem have come: a willingness that Basque nationalists, moderate and radical, should not let slip.

Spain - The New Leader

The Sources of Polish Law up to the End of the 18th Century

The Sources of Polish Law up to the End of the 18th Century

The Polish law developed, up to the century. XIV, almost exclusively with a character of customary law; and although, starting from the century. XIV, the legislative activity increased significantly, customary law retained a great importance until the fall of the Polish state. This customary law is made known to us, first, from the documents, and later, from the registers of the courts. The originals of the documents have been preserved since the beginning of the century. XII, mainly in the ecclesiastical archives, as well as in the numerous collections of copies. Character of a large collection of copies of documents had the so-called Kingdom Metrics, that is to say, the registers of the royal chancellery, in which the documents issued by the sovereign were recorded; the numerous volumes of the Metric dating from the year 1447, held by the century. XVI onwards with great care. The formulas (the oldest ones are from the 15th century) do not have great importance for science in Poland. The registers of the Polish courts, kept with great care by the various courts of all kinds, were kept since the end of the century. XIV and include an immense number of volumes; they are kept, not only in the archives of Warsaw, Krakow, Poznań, Lviv, Vilna, Lublin, which are located on the territory of today’s Polish state, but also in Gdansk and Kiev. The collections of customary law were not numerous; the oldest comes from the second half of the century. XIII, and was written in German, on the territory subject to the Teutonic Order, in order to make known to the employees of the order the law in force for the Polish population, domiciled in the territories belonging to the order. Among the later collections the most important are: the Artyku ł y s ą dowe (Articles of the courts) of the century. XV (39 articles) and the Consuetudines Cracovienses (40 articles), which were sanctioned by the king in 1506. Apart from some minor earlier statutes, the Statutes of King Casimir the Greatthey were the first major legislative monument of Polish law. The date of their promulgation is not known (in ancient times it was erroneously fixed at 1347). They were promulgated by King Casimir (1333-1370) separately for Lesser and Greater Poland. Preliminary judgments and other dissolved statutes were later added to the oldest drafting of the statute for Little Poland, consisting of 59 articles, in a second draft (of 106 articles); the statute for Greater Poland consisted of 34 articles, to which another 17 articles of various juridical character were added later. In practice, during the century. XV, the two statutes in question were united in a single work; one of these redactions (of 151 articles) was printed in the year 1488, in a private collection, and later, in 1506, in an official collection of Polish laws, and, the latter version seems to have been in force until the fall of the ancient republic; this collection was considered (erroneously) as a homogeneous codification of Casimir the Great. In the century XV, the statutes were published in a fairly large number; among these the statute, published in Warta in the year 1423, which is nothing but a “short story” to the statutes of Casimir the Great, and the statute, published in Piotrków in the year 1447, are above all important. the Polish diet arose, the legislation passed for most of the subjects to it, but for some subjects it was reserved to the sovereign himself. The laws enacted by the diet bore the name of to the statutes of Casimir the Great, and the statute, published in Piotrków in the year 1447. From the day the Polish diet arose, the legislation passed for most of the matters to it, but for some matters it was reserved to the sovereign himself. The laws enacted by the diet bore the name ofconstitutions ; at the end of the diet, all the decrees issued by it were published together, in the form of a single collection. The publication of the first constitutions bears the date of the year 1493, the publication of the last ones, that of 1793. For Poland 1997, please check

In the century XVI appear the first currents aimed at codifying Polish law. In the year 1523 the codification of the judicial process was published, under the title Formula processus iudicarii (101 articles). In 1532 a commission was set up for the codification of all Polish law; the diet, however, rejected the project, carefully compiled and containing 929 articles. In the same century, the particular law of a Polish region was also codified twice, namely that of Masovia, which formed a duchy a. part, demonstrating quite different legal peculiarities; this right was codified after the incorporation of Masovia to Poland in the so-called Masovian Statutesof the years 1532 and 1540, while a large collection of customary law and 25 antecedent statutes of the Masovian dukes were included in the codification in question. In the year 1598, the law in force in the Polish region, called Royal Prussia, was also codified, albeit insufficiently; this codification bears the name of Correctura Prussiae (158 articles). The codification work in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, united with Poland since the year 1386, was more successful; during the sec. XVI the law was codified there three times, and, more precisely, in the so-called Lithuanian Statutes, the first of the year 1529 (244 articles), the second of 1566 (368 articles) and the third of 1588 (1488 articles); these statutes were based on Lithuanian and Ruthenian customary rights. In the second of them, however, a considerable influence of Polish law can already be detected, in the third this influence appears even stronger. The later works for the codification of Polish law, both partial (procedural law in 1611 and 1642) and total (project compiled in the year 1778 by Andrea Zamoyski, on behalf of the diet), did not lead to any result. Only in the year 1775 was a small (49 articles) Code of Exchange Law (together with the exchange procedure) published, based on the work of Giovanni Gotlieb Heinecius, Elementa iuris cambialis, to which the character of auxiliary law had been attributed. It should be noted that, in the year 1519, the king promulgated the Armenian Statute (134 articles), based on the ancient Armenian law and mainly on the collection of it, made in Armenia around the year 1184 by Mechitar Gosh; this right was in force for the Armenians, who settled in very large numbers in the cities of eastern Poland.

The first edition of the Polish laws, private and very insufficient, was published in Leipzig in the year 1488 and is known under the title of Syntagmata ; in 1506, Chancellor Giovanni Łaski published, on behalf of the Diet, a large collection of Polish laws, entitled Inclyti Regni Poloniae commune Privileium, which remained in use until the end of the existence of the ancient Polish state. From that time on, the constitutions issued by the diet were usually given to the press when the diet was closed. In the years 1732-1739, under the title Volumina Legum, an unofficial collection of Polish laws was published in six volumes, later completed by two other volumes, which contain the further constitutions, up to the year 1782.

From the century XVI onwards, the norms of Polish law began to be collected in the so-called Compendiums, both systematically (Przyłuski 1553, Zierakowski 1554, Palczowski 1555, Herburt 1563, Sarnicki 1594, Januszowski 1600, Trembicki 1789-1791, etc.), and alphabetically (Herburt 1570). The whole of Polish political law was compiled by the following authors: Dresner (1613), Chwałkowski (1676), Hartknoch (1678), Zalasżowski (1700-1702, also private and criminal law), G. Lengnich (1742-1756, the most complete), Skrzetuski (1782-1784). They devoted themselves especially to the process: Dresner (1601), the Czaracki (1614) who wrote in Polish, and above all, in a broader form the Zawadzki (1612), who expanded the numerous subsequent editions (up to the year 1647) and lastly, Nixdorff (1655). The compilation of private, procedural criminal law, in the last times of the existence of the ancient Polish republic, is due to the

Polish Law

Sweden Relief

Sweden Relief

The territory of Sweden is made up, for the most part, of the western section of the great Baltic shield (see Scandinavia), a block of primitive rocks (gneiss, granites and leptites), which, reduced to a penepian already in the Precambric period, underwent in the Tertiary there are various tectonic disturbances, accompanied by a general uplift. This was followed in the Quaternary by a complex glaciation, which gave the topography of the town its characteristic features.

Therefore, although the soil is made up for the most part of archaic rocks, which extend over almost all of Sweden from the northern border to Scania, in which the primitive rocks are covered by Mesozoic soils, the morphology varies, and according to this one can distinguish four natural regions of very different size, then subdivided into smaller regional units: Norrland, central Sweden, Småland and Scania. For Sweden 1997, please check

The Norrland is formed by three longitudinal bands, approximately parallel which, like terraces, decrease in height from the border with Norway to the Gulf of Bothnia. To the west it extends for a width of about one hundred km. a mountainous region, in which almost flat or rounded summits alternate with acute peaks with alpine characteristics; the latter where more resistant rocks emerge (gabbro). The height of these peaks, covered with ice and completely devoid of vegetation, decreases from N. to Sweden, from 2123 m. in Kebnekaise at 1589 m. in Mars Fjäll; a succession of lakes, formed as a result of morainic barriers, extends at the foot of the mountainous region, engraved by numerous valley furrows, roughly parallel to each other and all having a NO.-SE direction. The next strip, whose altitude is between 400 and 500 m., embraces a vast plateau of gneiss, granite, porphyrites and leptites, rugged by numerous hills and rounded bumps; a thick morainic mantle covers the most ancient rocks of the plateau, engraved by wide valleys that open between endless coniferous forests. The impermeability of the soil and the slight slope, hindering the rapid drainage of water, favor the formation of peat bogs which today occupy about 30% of the entire surface.

A coastal alluvial plain, which borders the archaic lands along the Gulf of Bothnia, constitutes the third band, the width of which varies from 50 to 150 km. Of recent origin – it is in fact due to postglacial uplifts – this belt represents the most populated area of ​​Norrland, both because the more fertile soil lends itself to cultivation, and because of the influence exerted by the sea.

A vast transitional region, in which the topographical elements of Norrland still recur, separates the latter from the plains of central Sweden; to NO. of this the soil, scattered with ponds and peat bogs, is covered by extensive forests; NE. on the other hand, the marine deposits of the coastal strip of Norrland continue, which also cover the ancient rocky base here. Of particular interest for its rich mineral deposits is the Bergslag, the terminal region of the Norrland plateau, interposed between the gneissic soils of Värmland and the Uppland granites, and made up of leptites containing iron minerals and also gold, silver, copper, etc..

Central Sweden, proper, is a vast flat region, whose current topographical characteristics are due to the numerous fractures and dislocations, following which vast depressed areas were formed, occupied by the large lake basins of Mälar and Hjälmar to the NE. of the Vätter in the center and of the Väner in the NW. and many smaller lakes.

The Smaland, which occupies the southern part of Sweden, is made up of a plateau of archaic rocks, engraved and dismembered by lake basins and valley furrows that radiate from the center of the plateau in every direction. This plateau is limited to the south by Scania, made up of Mesozoic soils, in which weak undulations of more ancient soils (gneiss and granite) alternate with marine deposits.

Although of very limited extension (11,303 sq km), Scania has an exceptional importance in the economic life of the country, both for the fertile plains favorable to agriculture, for the mild climate, and for the position that makes it a region transit between the rest of Sweden and the next Central European states.

Sweden Relief

Hungary Politics and History

Hungary Politics and History

Political order. – The events preceding the Second World War and the first phases of the conflict (see below) allowed Hungary, allied with Germany and Italy, to recover a large part of the lost territories, as indicated by the attached table:

The enlargement of Hungary took place from 1938 to 1941 in four phases. With the first arbitration in Vienna (November 2, 1938, Hungary obtained a strip of territory from Czechoslovakia (from 2 to 65 km wide), located along the Hungarian-Slovakian and Ruthenian border. extended over 11,927 sq. km., counted 1,041,000 residents and included the centers of Komárom (Komárno), Kassa (Košice) and Munkács (Mukačevo). occupy Sub-Carpathian Russia, but since the borders of this region had never been precisely marked, following a Hungarian-Slovak agreement (4 April 1939), a strip of Slovak territory was added to protect the Ungvár area, with a total area of ​​12. 061 sq. Km. and a population of 588,000 residents With the second Vienna arbitration (30 August 1940), Hungary regained MaramureŞ, part of Crisana and that part of eastern Transylvania including the territory of the Székely, with a predominantly Hungarian population; Hungary thus recovered, without a shot being fired, a territory of 43,104 sq km. with 2,392,000 residents Finally, in April 1941, the Hungarian troops occupied the Bačka, part of the Baranja and the territory of the Mur (on the left of the Drava); this fourth enlargement made Hungary buy 11,301 sq km. with 1,518,000 residents

The peace treaty of 10 February 1947 brought Hungary back within the limits set by the Trianon treaty, with a slight adjustment in favor of Czechoslovakia near the triple Hungarian-Austrian-Czechoslovakian border. For Hungary government and politics, please check

History – On 1 and 9 July 1937 the two Chambers approved the new law concerning the election and powers of the regent, who is authorized, under the law, to propose names for his succession and cannot be called to answer by Parliament. In the months that followed, the intensification of the propaganda and action of groups with a National Socialist tendency was remarkable: on October 18 various right-wing organizations merged into the “Hungarian National Socialist Party”; a few days later 69 National Socialists were sentenced, to various penalties, by the court of Budapest, on the charge of having organized a military uprising to establish in Hungary a totalitarian regime with a National Socialist tendency. Other arrests and convictions followed in November 1937 and February 1938.

However, despite these repressive measures, an undoubted repercussion on public opinion and on the very work of the government of these new political trends has been felt in the fact that in Hungary too, in recent times, the “Jewish question” has arisen. The very large participation of Jewish elements in the commercial and financial activity of the nation, participation due to the fact that the Hungarian nobility, that is to say the ruling class of Hungary, had disdained trade; and, moreover, the fact that, thanks to the interest loans granted to the nobles, many Jews had been able, by means of mortgages, etc., to become de facto owners of part of the same landed property, constituted the premise for the anti-Semitic reaction, which in in recent times it has developed, as has been said, very quickly and intensely. A consequence of this movement was, in April 1938, the approval of the law of “quota”: for it the participation of the Israelites in the various professions is limited to 20%.

In addition to this, the intensification of work for national defense is also noteworthy (one billion pengö was made available to the government, with the law of 9 April 1938, for this purpose); and the accentuation of state intervention in economic life (decrees of 10 April 1938).

The most decisive right-wing orientation of Hungarian political life had its final expression in the change of ministry: in the Daranyi cabinet (who had already resigned for the first time on 9 March 1938, but reconstituted the same day), on 13 May, the cabinet chaired by B. Imredy, made up of men all belonging to right-wing parties.

Finance (p. 684). – Here are the figures, in millions of pengö, of the balance sheets since 1934:

At December 31, 1937, the external debt amounted to 1.1 billion and the internal debt to 0.5 (of which 0.1 is consolidated). Thanks to the exchange control introduced in July 1931, the nominal gold value of the pengo was maintained. From 1932, however, the bank began to pay premiums on bills which at the end of 1935 were unified around 50%.

As of December 31, 1937, notes in circulation amounted to 466 million and the reserve was 84 million in gold and 59 in foreign exchange.

Hungary Politics

Portugal Painting

Portugal Painting

Painting. – Developed in Romanesque and Gothic churches, Portuguese medieval painting, as we can see from the few vestiges that have come down to us, was based on Tuscan models or those of southern Spain, interpreting them with naive coarseness. Some surviving frescoes (S. Francesco a Porto, Tribunal of Monsaraz) reveal a presence of Italian artists who testify, in the international Gothic phase, of cultural exchanges between Portugal and Italy. The activity of Antonio Fiorentino in Portugal and A. Pires d’Evora in Tuscany offers an example of artistic circulation which, during the 15th century, will polarize towards other art centers in accordance with the new economic and political relations. which then were being established. The coming in Portugal, in 1428, by J. Van Eyck, commissioned to paint the portrait of the fiancée of Duke Philip of Burgundy, he inaugurates a new cultural phase. Starting from this marriage, in fact, with the development of commercial relations with Flanders, there were considerable imports of Flemish paintings, and while Flemish painters came to work in Portugal, Portuguese painters went to study in the workshops of the Bruges masters.

Likewise, in the field of miniature, after the Romanesque works of the 12th century (Commentary on the Apocalypse and Book of the Birds of the Benedictine abbey of Lorvão), the Italianizing taste, which had imprinted on some works (Bible of the Geronymites, commissioned to the Attavanti workshop), competed with the Flemish influence during an archaic 16th century. This can be found in the famous polyptych called “of St. Vincent outside the walls), attributed to N. Gonçalves, court painter of Alfonso V. It is a set of six panels, as many as have come down to us, made in the third fourth of the 15th century, in which Flemish influences are integrated into a personalized cultural context that also admits a certain Hispanic formation and which, in a moment of modern, however empirical, definition of nationality, becomes aware of the humanistic vision of the Renaissance. There is still discussion about the meaning and social role that this work played, or should have played, in its time: a single document, both on the iconographic and on the artistic level, the polyptych, whose original composition is ignored, captures the very essence of the society in which it was produced, in a vast panoramic vision, both realistic and symbolic. With these panels, in which certain archaic aspects of the composition are offset by a vigorous originality, Portuguese art produced one of the great works of Western painting of that time. If in the previous pictorial tradition – at least in the one known to us – nothing let us foresee such a creation, not even it produced, after itself, any consequence. An isolated work, of which memory was lost and which was rediscovered by chance only at the end of the 19th century, it could not become a point of reference for later Portuguese painting. For Portugal 1997, please check

It is believed that F. Henriques and Fra Carlos are two Flemish painters who settled in Portugal in the 15th century: they would have been the main means of the influence of the Nordic schools. Alongside the current that derived from them, another is identified, headed by the Lisbon workshop of J. Afonso, whose catalog has not yet been defined. Some provincial currents should also be considered, including the one that was founded around V. Fernandes, known as “Grão Vasco”, active in Viseu, who was once considered as the “father of Portuguese primitive painting”. The Master of Sardoal, a village in the center of the country, represents a school whose works also show certain qualities of plastic vigor, according to a somewhat national taste. F. Henriques was J. Afonso’s brother-in-law: the family structure of the latter’s workshop can enlighten us on the relationships between the main artists of the next generation. G. Lopes, G. Fernandes and C. de Figueiredo were acquired siblings or grandchildren of the head school: it is through their works that a “Luso-Flemish” line develops with different accents and with varying degrees of national originality, within iconographic codes defined by the corporations. With C. Lopes, son of G. and grandson of V. Afonso, the 16th century will come to free itself from all archaism. with different accents and with varying degrees of national originality, within iconographic codes defined by the corporations. With C. Lopes, son of G. and grandson of V. Afonso, the 16th century will come to free itself from all archaism. with different accents and with varying degrees of national originality, within iconographic codes defined by the corporations. With C. Lopes, son of G. and grandson of V. Afonso, the 16th century will come to free itself from all archaism.

The mannerism that later imposed itself in Portuguese painting (D. Teixeira, S. Rodrigues) does not go beyond the morphological level and, once again, is a tributary of Flemish painting, despite the Italianizing theories of F. de Holanda, who had frequented the entourage by Michelangelo. However, the value of the portraits of King Sebastian, the mannerist ruler par excellence, painted by C. de Morais, should be emphasized. It will be precisely the portrait that will keep Portuguese painting of the 17th century at dignified levels, particularly with the work of D. Vieira, characterized by Spanish influences. For the rest, this century has produced, in addition to the still lifes with the naive grace of J. D’Obidos, a mediocre religious painting whose ideological discourse was not disturbed by the Counter-Reformation, since it already accorded by tradition to an Orthodox society.

In the sumptuous court of John V, painting never played an important role, overshadowed as it was by the Baroque decoration with azulejos panels and the talha (wood carving) gilded of the altars. Vieira Lusitano, trained in Rome, “academicus romanus”, was the only artist of value with A. Goncalves and Portugal Alexandrino, while PA Quillard, trained in the circle of Watteau, could not highlight his brilliant gifts for a short moment, destined, as it was, to die very young in Lisbon. John V therefore preferred to have French and Flemish engravers come to his court, to import the paintings for his palace-convent in Mafra from Rome, or to buy in Paris, through the Mariettes, those for his collections, which the earthquake of 1755 would have later destroyed, as destroyed the ceilings painted with the technique of trompe – l’oeil from the Tuscan V. Baccarelli (who introduced the genre in Portugal at the beginning of the 18th century) as well as the Opera Theater and the paintings, which constituted its decoration, by GC Bibiena.

Portuguese painting

Lithuania Literature After 18th Century

Lithuania Literature After 18th Century

Near the end of the century. XVII the intellectual activity of the country is concentrated in Vilna, capital of the grand duchy. Here and there the idea of ​​a homeland dissolved from the old historical and cultural ties with Poland begins to make its way. Characteristic of this state of mind are the history lessons of the canon of Vilna N. Bohusz (1746-1820), in which with an indignant accent he speaks of the abandonment of a language in which echoes of the ancient common proto language are heard. – Indo-European. These appeals are echoed by the inspired poems of Antonio Strazdas (in Polish and Russian Drozdowski; 1763-1833). His song Pulkim ant keliu (Let’s kneel down) and the poems, The orphan, The blackbird ‘s song, The spring song they had a great virtue of emotion among the people who held dear this strange poet and priest of his, vagabond and friend of the derelict. In 1825 the professor of the University of Königsberg Liūdas Rėza (1777-1840) published another collection of dainos and an interesting study on Lithuanian folklore. At the same time the following stand out: the Samogitian judge Dionigi Poška-Paškevičius (1760-1831) with a series of poems; Simone Stanevičius and the poet Silvestro Valiūnas (1790-1831) who with their works mark the entry of Lithuanian literature into the great current of Romanticism. It is favored by the revival by Polish writers of historical and folkloristic studies concerning Lithuania: Teodoro Narbut (1784-1864) writes in Polish Dzieje narodu litewskiego (History of the Lithuanian people, vols. 9, Vilna 1835-41) in which for the first time the events of Lithuania up to the time of the Union of Lublin are collected with love and order. The most important of all, however, is Simone Daukantas (1793-1864), the forerunner of the revival of historical studies in Lithuania with two dense volumes written in a high style and with the work Costumes of the Ancient Lithuanians and Samogizî. Bishop Matteo Valancius (1801-1864) is the author not only of lives of saints and collections of fables and tales in an elevated and patriotic style, but also of a remarkable history of the bishopric of Samogizia. In poetry the influence of the Polish poet Adam Mickiewicz (1799-1824) looms large, who wrote some of his best verses on Lithuania which he called “his beloved homeland”, and many of the subjects of his poems, such as Pan Tadeusz and Gra ż yna., either they are taken from Lithuanian history or they describe Lithuanian environments and customs. For Lithuania 2003, please check

In the second half of the century. The period of Lithuanian newspaper printing begins in the 19th century, the first copy of which is due to Laurino Ivinskis (1811-1881) with his Matra š č iai and followed by Pričkus Kursaitis (Kurschat, 1806-1884), founder of the Keleivis, which is still published in Tilsit. In vain did the Russian reaction to the Polish-Lithuanian uprising of 1863 try to put an end to this intense awakening work by forbidding the publication of any book written in Latin script from 1864 to 1904 and ordering the closure of Lithuanian schools. In 1883 the patriot and writer Giovanni Basanavičius (1851-1927), author of about ten historical, folkloristic and archaeological volumes, founded the newspaper Au š ra (The dawn) which lays the foundations of the future Lithuanian political revival movement. Around Basanavičius is a whole host of writers such as Sliupas, Silvestravičius, Miliauskas, and others. Continuator of Basanavičius’s work and founder in Lithuania of the “populists” or Liaudininkai party is Vincenzo Kudirka (1858-1899) creator of the newspaper Varpas (The bell) and writer of short stories such as the Tiltas and the Virsininkai which are a caustic and biting caricature of the officials of the Tsarist regime in Lithuania. He also wrote the words and music of the national anthem. In the purely literary field we should remember the bishop Antonio Baranauskas (1835-1902) author of the poem The forest Anyk š čiai. The national poet Giovanni Maironis-Maciulis (1862-1932), author of poems, historical dramas and volumes of various erudition, was trained at the Baranauskas school.

Thus we enter the period of contemporary literature, which on the one hand follows the classical-romantic tradition of the previous period with more accentuated characters of modernity, such as can be found in the writer Vincas Krėvė-Mickevičius, master of the symbolic and legendary genre, with a dozen of volumes of short stories, historical dramas and legendary exhumations, in Liūdas Gira, a delicate lyric poet and playwright, in Tumas-Vaižgandas, in Antanas Smetona, in Jakĕtas-Dambrauskas, in Vaitkus, in Gustaitis, in the philosopher and playwright Guglielmo Storasta (Storost) more commonly known under the pseudonym of Vydūnas, whose plays have a national and theosophical background, in the playwright and poet Petras Vaičiunas, in the poets Mikolaitis-Putinas, Fausto Kirsa, Balys Sruoga, Kazys Binkis, in the polemicist and playwright Herbačauskas and in many others;while on the other hand there is an impulse to follow movements more generally known in the rest of Western Europe with the work of young people who try to assert themselves, but whose definitive developments and attitudes are difficult to predict.

Lithuania Literature After 18th Century

Belgium in 1939

Belgium in 1939

With the formation of the Spaak ministry (May 15, 1938), for the first time in the history of Belgium the political direction is assumed by a socialist, with a cabinet of concentration that is constituted on the platform of the renewal of the institutions, of the solution of the ethnic conflict, of equalization in the scholastic field and of the fight against unemployment and leaves only the Rexists, the Flemish nationalists and the Communists to the opposition. Concentration, however, is only at the top; deep is the split not only between the various parties making up the government majority, but within each individual party: PH Spaak’s decision to enter into regular diplomatic relations with Franco (November 29, 1938) causes confusion among the socialists, who on the other hand, Catholics fight the unemployment insurance project, already accepted at the time of the ministerial declaration, and are accused of directing by the liberals. The situation – despite the ministerial rehash of January 21, 1938 (Spaak hands over the Foreign Affairs to Janson) – is still worsening due to the sudden resurgence of the age-old Flemish question, due to the scandalous appointment of a war traitor to the recent Flemish Academy in Brussels. of 1914, Dr. Martens, already sentenced to death, and the indignation of the liberals for this appointment. All this, with the pressure of the square (Spaak is beaten by the crowd), leads to the resignation of the entire cabinet (February 9, 1939). The political direction passes to the Catholic Pierlot, with the exclusion of liberals from government; but the cabinet remains in office for just five days due to the socialist opposition to the deflationist policy of Pierlot and his finance minister Gutt. The king signs (6 March 1939) the dissolution of parliament, uncovering the crown in the letter to Pierlot accompanying the decree, and also revealing authoritarian tendencies. For Belgium 2005, please check

The elections of April 2, 1939 marked a victory for the Catholic bloc, which became the strongest party in parliament, and for the Liberals, a significant weakening of the Socialists, who would or never pass to a second party, and a crushing defeat of the Rexists, who lost all parliamentary weight. Faced with the non-participation decided by the socialist congress, the new government that Pierlot constitutes on 18 April is only Catholic and liberal: created on the platform of Leopoldian neutralism, constitutional reform and economic-financial reorganization, it disposes of considerable powers by parliamentary delegation. extended; but it suffered the repercussions of international tension and on 3 September 1939 it was transformed into a new ministry of national union with Pierlot at the presidency and Spaak at the Foreigners.

After the war broke out, despite the growing discontent of Wallonia linked by complex ties to France and the increasingly strong cracks that – on the international level – arise between the politics of the sovereign and that of the responsible cabinet, Leopold III continues to remain faithful to the conception of integral neutralism: after having launched an appeal for peace on 24 August on behalf of the states of the Oslo group and offered, four days later, in agreement with the Queen of Holland, his good offices, he reiterates, once the conflict has broken out, in a proclamation to the country neutrality (September 4) and November 7 renews the offer of mediation, in harmony with the pacifist offensive unleashed by Hitler after the victory in Poland. This position, generally approved by the press, it takes a tragically absurd turn as the alarms of imminent German invasion become more insistent; but it always remains valid, preventing the implementation of the plan decided on November 28, 1939 by the allied command, while it exacerbates the traditional antagonism between the Walloons and the Flemings, the latter in favor of the policy of I. eopoldo III.

Under the pretext of “safeguarding Belgian neutrality”, denied, in the very act that von Bülow-Schwante handed over to Spaak the note, from the massive bombings of Brussels and Antwerp, on 10 May 1940 the Wehrmacht put an end to this situation. This does not mean that the consequences of a policy conducted for years were eliminated: the king and the Belgian high command – despite the fact that on 12 May the subordination to Gamelin was accepted – set up the campaign in the sense of a pure and simple defense of the territory and emphasized the unilateral nature of the obligations of the Western powers (this against the opinion of the Pierlot cabinet, which in turn does not speak of “guarantors” but of “allies” and on 17 May sent the king a letter of protest for the withdrawal of troops in the direction of the national redoubt north of the Meuse, rather than towards the French border). Faced with German power, in Belgium also favored by the sudden collapse of Flemish units (e.g., in Nevele, on May 26).

Belgium in 1939

Austria Ordinary Rolling Roads and Waterways

Austria Ordinary Rolling Roads and Waterways

The ordinary rolling roads – excluding the country roads, the mule tracks and the paths – measured for the whole of Austria, at the end of 1924, km. 31,252, equal to km. 37.2 every 100 sq. Km. and km. 4.8 every 1000 residents These figures are quite remarkable, if one thinks of the predominantly mountainous nature of the territory and the location of the inhabited centers, almost all located on the valley floor, so the main network is arranged in large meshes along the natural directions of movement. After Vorarlberg and Salzburg, the best served provinces for ordinary communications are Lower Austria with 9.2 km. every 1000 residents and then immediately the Tyrol (5.4), in spite of its great mountain masses, Carinthia (4.8) and Styria (3.8); while Upper Austria (3.2) and Burgenland (2.9) are relatively scarce, although they also have a large part of flat land.

The first Austrian railway line was that of Semmering, inaugurated in 1854 and extended in 1857 for Graz up to Trieste. In 1867 the Brenner one was completed; in 1873 the third transversal line was built, from Bohemia to Trieste to Vienna; in 1879 the Italian line to Pontebba was inaugurated, but the longitudinal ones along the Danube were already ready, from Passau to Linz, Vienna and Presburgo, the other of the Pusteria from Fortezza to Klagenfurt to Marburg, and then the one from Wörgl in Inn valley, Bischofshofen (Salzburg), Selztal (Enns valley) and Leoben (Mur valley) to unite Tyrol with Vienna; and finally in 1884 the Arlberg railway from Innsbruck to Bregenz on Lake Constance was inaugurated. All these lines more or less followed the natural route of the carriage-free communications, but between 1905-1908 the new Tauern and Karavanke line was built, to put Linz and Bohemia in direct communication with Trieste. Today even the Austrian railway network, within the new borders, is but a set of fragments of a larger organization, created for the economy of the great empire and destined to connect its agricultural, mining and industrial regions (Bohemia, Moravia, Galicia, Hungary) with the Alpine regions, as well as the capital with Trieste. There were also international lines from west to east crossing at Vienna, which served to make this the center of communications with Eastern Europe. The new state has preserved only the westernmost trunks of this network, in a mountainous and costly operation area, and of the international lines only six sections cut by the new borders without regard to traffic needs (such as the one from Vienna to Trieste), and with the main crossing stations in foreign territory: Gmünd, Břeclav (Lundenburg) and Bratislava in Czechoslovakia, Győr (Raab) and Sopron (Ödenburg) in Hungary, Marburg and Jesenice (Assling) in Yugoslavia. The Austrian railway network was at the end of 1924, of km. 6610, i.e. 1 km. every 12.65 sq. km. and 987 residents These are notable figures in themselves, for an essentially Alpine state (km. 7.9 every 100 kmq.; Italy 6.9 km.), To which km. 399 of narrow-gauge railways and inter-provincial tramways, insufficient above all for the traffic of the Alpine provinces, where, as in the Tyrol, there are barely km. 3.7 of railway for every 100 sq. Km. surface; 5.8 km. of railways you have in Salzburg; 6.5 and 6.3 in Styria and Carinthia, pure industrial regions, while there are km. 9.3 and 11.8 in Upper and Lower Austria, flat and densely inhabited regions (783 and 650 residents per km of railway), and Burgenland, with 7.6 km. every 100 sq. km. of surface and 929 residents for every km., it represents one of the best served provinces. For Austria 2003, please check

Today the most important longitudinal lines for traffic are: the Passau-Vienna-Presburgo, section of the international communication London-Paris-Vienna-Balkan Peninsula (Passau-Vienna 5 hours); the Vienna-Leoben-Villach-Tarvisio for communications with Italy (9 am); the Vienna-Leoben-Selztal-Bischofshofen-Wörgl-Innsbruck-Arlberg-Constance, for communications with Switzerland (3 pm). The trunks of two traversal lines were then left to Austria: Břeclav (Lundenburg) – Vienna – Graz – Marburg – Trieste of the great artery from Bohemia to the Adriatic (Vienna-Trieste at 2 pm); and the other Salzburg – Schwarzach -Villacco – Jesenice (Assling) – Piedicolle-Trieste for the relations of southern Germany with the Mediterranean (Salzburg-Trieste 11 am). Of these lines are electrified today (1927) km. 161 of the Innsbruck-Bludenz section of the Arlberg railway; km. 108 of the Salzkammergut railway, from Stainach to Attnang, and km. 34 from Innsbruck to Brenner, without counting the less important lines such as the Scharnitz-Innsbruck (km. 34), the Zillertalerbahn (km. 32) and others. However, the electrification of another 350 km has already been decided. of alpine railways; these include the continuation of electrification from Bludenz to Constance, the Salzburg-Schwarzach-St. Weit-Wörgl, as well as Schwarzach-St. Weit-Spittal of the Tauern railway, that is of the railways of the western Austrian group with steep slopes and considerable traffic.

In 1924 the wagon-kilometers traveled were 800,391,000, which carried 108,702,819 people, with an average of km. 33.5 per person and 22,746,459 tons of goods; movement which is reduced by about 30% compared to that of the pre-war period, but which is rapidly gaining, although the exercise is still passive.

The waterways that remained in Austria were, at the end of 1924, km. 1732, of which 874 for the floating of timber, 838 for navigable rivers and 21 for canals, that is a total of km. 2.06 every 100 sq. Km. of surface. The maximum length of the waterways belongs to Upper and Lower Austria, which are crossed by the Danube for almost 350 km. in length, of which 200 are well navigable, the others in need of improvement, but which are crossed by passenger and cargo steamers from Passau to Presburgo. Downstream from Vienna, navigation is possible for steamboats with a capacity from 650 to 1000 tons, with draft up to 2 meters; upstream of Vienna some rocks prevent navigation for steamboats with a draft from 1.3 to 1.2 m. In 1924 270,000 tons were loaded in the Austrian ports of the Danube. of goods and 835,000 tons were unloaded, while there were 280,000 of them in transit; then there was a movement of 700,000 passengers. Of the other provinces only Carinthia has 4 km. of regular steam services, while Styria has 123 navigable towpaths, Salzburg 45 and Tyrol only 15; but Styria, Carinthia and Tyrol benefit from many alpine rivers for the floating of the timber (km. 331; 254; 142).

Austria ordinary rolling roads

Bulgaria Literature of Yesterday and Today

Bulgaria Literature of Yesterday and Today

The literature of yesterday. – With Vazov and Penčo Slavetkov, who have now acquired the right of European citizenship, Bulgarian literature is therefore already in full development. Moreover, even if no one rises to their height, the ranks of other Bulgarian writers, their contemporaries and their successors, are long, among which more than one stands out for originality and artistic value.

Aleko Konstantinov (1863-1897) gives national literature the first example of a satirical novel in his Bai Ganiu, which delightfully ridicules, through the narration of the fantastic events of a kind of Bulgarian Tartarin, naivety, ignorance and the gullibility of certain popular, rather common types. Very original is the art of Petko Todorov (1879-1916), author of some short stories, sketches and dramatic works, who, in a completely new and unusual prose, presents, in his Idylls, a series of fantastic scenes, allegories, visions, popular legends, art studies. Even satirical poetry finds a worthy representative in Stojan Mihailovski (1856-1927), whose art, although moving from the beginning, when the homeland was still enslaved, by the ideal of national redemption, gradually developed under the particular influence of Aristophanes., French satire and Krylov’s fables.

There are numerous operas. Among the best known, after the major ones already mentioned, the name of Konstantin Veličlgov (1856-1907), author of melancholic poems and sentimental lyrics (some about Italy), is particularly linked to his mediocre poetic version of Dante ‘s Inferno and to a series of Pisma ot Rim (Letters from Rome) in prose. Dimco Debelianov (1887-1916), a poet with a sensitive and painful soul, matured in the school of his Russian and French contemporaries, who died in the world war, left lyrics and elegies vibrant with sentiment and gloomy despair. Above all others, after Vazov and Penjo Slavejkov, by the unanimous judgment of the Bulgarian critics, the unfortunate poet Pĕju K. Javorov (1877-1914), troubled soul of a dreamer and idealist, tormented by the reality of life in contrast with the indefinite needs of the restless spirit, haunted by an adverse fate, which drove him to a tragic premature death.

Literary criticism has finally had authoritative representatives as well, among whom the names of K. Krăstev and Bulgaria Penev stand out individually. In the work of these writers, and of many other minors, are found expression the various literary genres hitherto established in Bulgaria. For Bulgaria 2006, please check

The literature of today. – All these writers already belong to history. But no less numerous are the representatives of Bulgarian letters also in the two generations of the living: the old and the new, in whose art a growing Western influence is noted, hand in hand with the progress of cultural relations between Bulgaria and Western Europe.

The names of Elin-Pelin (pseudonym of Dimităr Ivanov) and Jordan Jovkov emerge in the field of short stories, the first having established itself for many years as an excellent descriptor of national country life, the second revealed already before the world war through a series excellent stories that draw on Bulgarian life and customs; Dobri Nemirov, who wrote and writes novels against a background in part similar to that of the two previous writers; by Georgi Stomatov, author of good stories, mainly drawn from Bulgarian city life.

In the lyric field, the poets Nikolai Liliev, Teodor Trajanov, Ljudmil Stojanov, Emanuil P. Dimitrov, are among the best representatives of Bulgarian symbolism, which developed under French and German influences, while Kiril Hristov tackles (partly also under Italian influences) erotic themes, new to the Bulgarian letters. A place to himself can be assigned to the very fruitful Nikola Rajnov, a poet also in his prose, indeed especially in this one, which stands out for its very special rhythm, for the accurate refinement of the form, for the extraordinary wealth of similes and metaphors, where the author’s profound mysticism finds particular expression. Discreet stories from life can be found in the copious collections of TG Vlajkov by Anton Strašimirov, which have been known for many years. Good overall, especially for the fluid harmony of the verse, In the first place (The eternal and the holy) vibrate notes of high lyricism and deep feeling. Modern Expressionism has also found some followers: the best known of these is Čavdar Mutafov. Stojan Čilingirov, a very fertile polygraph, Ivan Kirilov, Damjan Kalfov, and above all Georgi Rajčev, still belong mainly to the old group of storytellers and storytellers, in which, alongside Dimităr Šišmanov, Angel Karaliičev gradually acquires notoriety among the representatives of the new generation., Vladimir Poljanov, and numerous others, on whose work, as on that of a long line of young poets (Atanas Dalčev, Dimităr Pantaleev, etc.) any judgment is still premature. In the dramatic field, despite the tenacious and continuous efforts of many writers, the most backward has remained Majstori (Mastri) by Račo Stojanov and in the comedy Golemanov by St. Kostov. But these are still attempts.

Developed over the course of a few decades, Bulgarian literature already has as a whole an artistic heritage that is anything but negligible. The intensity of production from the time of liberation to today partially compensates for the late start. Literary genres have all been more or less treated, but not all with equal intensity or with equal success. The greatest and most numerous affirmations are found in the poetic field and in the novella. There are few good novels to date. Even the dramatic attempts were mediocre or failed. As a general feature the realistic note prevails in prose writers, the sentimental lyric note in poets. The content is usually purely national and, until liberation, almost exclusively patriotic. Predominant influences on writers exercise, as has been said, on the one hand the Russian letters, well known to all, on the other the popular songs, transmitted from generation to generation. Only later and to a much lesser extent, alongside the ever prevalent Russian, some beneficial Western influence, especially French and German, is noted. On these foundations the writers of today create, in fervent competition, almost animated by the desire to recapture to the homeland letters the long centuries lost in servitude, the Bulgarian literature of tomorrow.

Bulgaria Literature of Yesterday and Today

Cyprus Archaeology

Cyprus Archaeology

Extensive research on the prehistory of Cyprus was carried out during the period under review. There are some hints of a pre-Neolithic (late-Paleolithic?) Culture in a locality on the southern coast of the island (Akrotiri- Aetokremos).

Excavations in the two major Neolithic sites (Kalavassos- Tenta and Khirokitia) have cast ample light especially on the aceramic phase of the Neolithic. New dating through carbon 14, for the Ancient Neolithic period, at least for Kalavassos- Tenta, allow us to go back to the end of the 8th millennium. In both locations, circular buildings were discovered. A new aspect that has emerged is the fortification of both settlements: in Kalavassos with a moat and in Khirokitia with a massive wall, previously interpreted as a road. In Kalavassos, pisé was widely usedor mud bricks for the construction of the walls and there is evidence of the decoration with a red pigment of the plastered walls: in one case a composition with crudely rendered human figures was found.

New excavations in the Paphos district (Lemba- Lakkous and Kissonerga Mosphilia) have shed light on the Chalcolithic period. In both locations, large circular structures with concrete floors were discovered. Limestone and terracotta statuettes depicting nude female figures illustrate the religious beliefs of the 4th millennium Cyprus, which centered around a female fertility deity, connected with childbirth; the existence of a male god of fertility with phallic characteristics is also documented. A richly painted clay model of an open-air circular sanctuary, found at Kissonerga- Mosphilia, with 17 clay and stone human figurines, illustrates complex religious rituals in the Chalcolithic period.

The Early Bronze Age is documented by architectural remains and tombs discovered in Sotira- Kaminoudhia, near the southern coast. They can be dated to the Early Bronze Age I, corresponding to the so-called ” Philia cultural phase ” of the northern part of the island (early 3rd millennium). A pair of gold earrings or hair clips was found in one tomb, the oldest of its kind.

The excavation of tombs in the village of Kalavassos yielded a large amount of pottery and also bronze tools and weapons, which testify to the prosperity of this region located in an area rich in copper mines. The tombs cover the entire Middle Bronze Age. A settlement dating from the end of the Middle Bronze to the beginning of the Late Bronze has been excavated at Episkopi- Phaneromeni: large houses with many rooms have been found, often with traces of a foreground. Near the settlement, Middle Bronze Age tombs have been excavated.

Another Middle Bronze Age settlement has been excavated in Alambra, where large buildings with thick walls have also been unearthed.

The Late Bronze Age focused the greatest interest in research and excavation. The tombs excavated in Maroni- Kapsaloudhia near the southern coast and in Palaepaphos- Teratsoudhia illustrate relations with Syria and Egypt (a stone vase with the Ahmosis cartouche was found in Palaepaphos). An early 14th century tomb excavated in Kalavassos- Ayios Dhimitrios may be one of the richest ever discovered on the island: it contained Mycenaean pottery, gold jewelry (weighing 432 g), ivory and glass objects, evidence of the wealth of Cyprus and in particular of Kalavassos in this period, located near the copper mines. Several settlements dating to the Late Cypriot IIC-Late Cypriot IIIA period (c. 1200 BC) have been excavated, illustrating the prosperity of the island before the upheavals that caused the abandonment, destruction and reconstruction of numerous Late Cypriot locations. Large administrative buildings, built with ashlar blocks, were discovered in Maroni- Vournes and Kalavassos- Ayios Dhimitrios, both abruptly abandoned around 1200 BC, at the end of the Late Cypriot IIC period. In the administrative building of Kalavassos, clay cylinders were found with engraved signs of the Cyprominoic script and a large number of Mycenaean IIIB plates and cups and local imitations, illustrating the importance of this building from which the lord of the region probably administered the exploitation of copper mines. For Cyprus 2015, please check

Two fortified settlements, one in Pyla- Kokkinokremos on the south-east coast, the other in Maa- Palaeokastro on the west coast, illustrate the troubled period that affected the eastern Mediterranean after the fall of the Mycenaean “ empire ” and the activities of the so-called ” people of the sea ”. The first settlement was abandoned in the face of imminent danger towards or immediately after 1200 BC and was never re-inhabited; the second was destroyed by a fire immediately after 1200, rebuilt and abandoned towards the middle of the 12th century. Rich tombs, dating back to around 1200, have made funeral objects, such as ceramics, bronzes, gold jewels, ivory and alabaster objects. Such tombs were excavated in the area of ​​Palaepaphos, Liomylia. Part of a settlement and tombs from the period around 1200 BC were excavated in Alassa, north of Kourion.

The early Iron Age and the Archaic periods are illustrated by the discoveries made in the tombs of Palaepaphos- Skales. The grave goods were filled with bronze pottery, weapons, tools and jewelery. Phoenician objects found in these tombs show that the wealth of the residents of Palaepaphos in this period derived from trade with the Levantine coast. A bronze obelos found in an 11th-century tomb in this cemetery has an inscription in the Cypriot syllabary, a Greek proper name in the genitive, in a form proper to the Arcadian dialect: it is the first evidence we have of the use of the Greek language in Cyprus.

The cemetery of Amatunte, on the southern coast, has yielded a large amount of objects dating from the Cypro-geometric period to the Roman one. Of particular interest is the ceramics from the tombs, both local of the so-called ” Amatunte style ”, and imported, Greek and Phoenician. The tombs were also rich in terracotta, especially from the 6th century BC, both local and Phoenician. There were also bronze objects, gold and silver jewelry, etc., testifying to the wealth of this cosmopolitan port city.

A classical period building has been partially excavated in the Evreti locality in Palaepaphos; other contemporary buildings have been excavated in Idalion, along with part of the city defense wall. The remains of a sanctuary excavated in Tamassos can be dated to the same period . The early Hellenistic period was further illustrated by the underwater exploration of the port of ancient Amatunte, of which significant parts have been found. The fortifications of Nea Paphos, cut into the rock, of which a large part has been discovered along the western side of the city, with ramps, gates and towers, can be dated to the same period. Rich material from the Roman and Hellenistic periods was found in the tombs of Nea Paphos: these also include the monumental tombs of the part of the necropolis known as ” Tombs of the Kings ”. In Nea Paphos more villas of the Roman age have been found: we remember the ” Casa del Teseo ” with polychrome paved mosaics and the ” House of Aion ”, adjacent to it, with beautiful floor mosaics of the 4th century. AD, depicting mythological scenes. Finally we can mention the discovery of a Roman nymphaeum in Kourion and that of the temple of Aphrodite on the acropolis of Amatunte.

Cyprus excavations

Sightseeing in Hungary

Sightseeing in Hungary

Visit Hungary, a country in Central Europe, as part of a tour. In Hungary you can expect images of nature such as the vast Hungarian Puszta and the lovely landscape on the Danube Bend. Experience Budapest, the capital and at the same time the queen of the Danube cities. Stroll across the majestic Chain Bridge, visit the imposing parliament building on the banks of the Danube, Margaret Island, the Castle Hill, the Fisherman’s Bastion or the famous castle of Empress Sissi, Gödöllö. The major cities of Hungary such as Szeged with the Votive Church, the Ferenc Mora Museum, the New Synagogue, the Bishop’s Palace or the City Hall are also worth visiting; Debrecen with the Great Reformed Church, the Deri Museum or the thermal baths; the city of Miskolc; Pecs (Fünfkirchen) with the National Theater, the mosque Gazi Khassim or the Zsolnay fountain and the city of Györ (Raab) with the St. Ignatius Church, the episcopal castle, the Altabak house. You will find a wonderful place to swim and relax at Lake Balaton. Get to know Hungary on a study trip!

Castle Hill

According to topschoolsintheusa, the Hungarian capital Budapest is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. One reason for this is the castle hill in the center of the city with its numerous famous sights in the baroque style. On the legendary castle hill is the historic castle district, which has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site for many years and attracts millions of locals and tourists from all over the world every year. From the altogether 168 meter high castle hill one also has a fascinating overview of the entire city.

Castle Palace and Matthias Church

The biggest attraction on the castle hill is the huge castle palace. The largest building in the country, which towers over the city in the south of the castle hill, is one of the city’s most important landmarks. The impressive palace from the 13th century is mainly used as a museum today. The Matthias Church on Trinity Square, one of the most famous churches in Hungary, also belongs to the castle district. In the immediate vicinity of the impressive building, also known as the “Coronation Church”, there are several museums as well as other historical buildings and valuable monuments. With a leisurely stroll through the narrow streets, you can really enjoy the historical flair of the castle district and discover a lot of interesting things. The quarter on the Burgberg is characterized by numerous small art galleries, Souvenir shops and cozy cafes. The castle hill can be reached with the historic funicular railway, among other things.

Gerbeaud coffee house

Legendary, elegant and stylish: the Gerbeaud coffee house

At the end of the pedestrian zone, on Vörösmarty Platz, there is an architectural jewel, inside and out: the legendary Café Gerbeaud. It is one of the most traditional coffee houses in Europe and undoubtedly the most beautiful in all of Budapest. And of course the bakery was purveyor to the court during the Austro-Hungarian dual monarchy.

The charm of the fin de siecle

Whoever enters the coffee house is immediately enveloped by the incomparable atmosphere of the Wilhelminian era: thick carpets, stucco ceilings in the Rococo style, chandeliers, wall coverings made of fine woods, massive armchairs and dainty secession chairs from the era of Viennese Art Nouveau exude the elegant charm of the fin de siecle. If you travel through Hungary and stop in Budapest, you should not miss this coffee house. You just have to try the Gerbeaud slices or the Dobos cake.

A success story right from the start

The story of this famous coffee house began with Henrik Kugler, who, after completing his apprenticeship in major European cities, opened his pastry shop on Jósef-Nádor-Platz in Pest in 1858 and immediately gained an unparalleled reputation. His ice cream creations were hailed as the best in town. The guests particularly liked the fact that they could take cakes and chocolates home with them in stylish packaging. Even today, the packaging resembles real works of art and is known all over the world. In 1870 Kugler moved his coffee house to Vörösmarty Platz to be closer to the center. In 1884, Kugler made Emil Gerbeaud a business partner, who later gave the café its name. The enterprising Gerbeaud introduced new products such as Parisian creams, hundreds of new types of pastries, candies and confectionery. He even designed the popular packaging himself. And he equipped the bakery with the most modern machines. Quality and the art of baking, that’s what Gerbeaud stood for.

In 1995 the German entrepreneur Erwin Franz Müller took over the coffee house. After extensive renovations, the traditional house shines in new, old splendor. In 2009 a branch of the same name was even opened in Tokyo.

Danube arch

A little north of Budapest is the Danube Arch – Dunakanyar – which is considered by many to be the most beautiful part of the Danube on its 2800 km stretch from the Black Forest to the Black Sea.

The best time to travel here for a hike or a boat tour is spring or autumn. In summer there are not only many tourists in this wonderful landscape along the Danube, but also city-weary Hungarians from Budapest.

The most popular is Szentendre, right on the Danube. The medieval houses and the picturesque landscape in the area make this city an attractive destination 21 kilometers north of Budapest. Countless Orthodox churches, museums and galleries invite you to discover them. Esztergom is a little north about 64 kilometers from Budapest. As the center of the Hungarian Catholic Church, this city has an impressive cathedral that is well worth a visit.


Location and historical background

Esztergom, a town with 31,000 inhabitants, is located around 50 km west of Budapest in northern Hungary on the Danube. The city, which is called Gran in German, is one of the oldest places in the country and was settled long before Roman times. Esztergom gained historical importance between the 10th and 13th centuries as the capital of the Hungarian kingdom.

Sights in Esztergom

The two most important buildings of the city, the magnificent “Assumption of Mary and St. Adalbert” cathedral and the well-preserved castle, are enthroned on the castle hill, which is visible from afar. The classical style basilica is the largest Catholic church in Hungary and is even one of the largest churches in Europe. The elongated hall church was built between the years 1001 and 1869 and a visit is one of the most interesting things to do during a trip to the region. In the immediate vicinity is the extensive fortress, which played a decisive role during the Ottoman Wars and was the residence of the kings of Hungary around 1000. Today the imposing castle houses a museum with exhibits that document the history of Esztergom.

The Danube flowing through the city marks the border with the neighboring state of Slovakia. Esztergom is connected to the Slovak Štúrovo on the opposite side of the road by the Maria Valeria Bridge, which is more than 500 m long.

This area of ​​Hungary is interesting for both historically interested study travelers and spa vacationers. The Aquasziget beach and thermal baths include a health and wellness center as well as an adventure pool. The complex includes a sauna department and facilities for various massages and body treatments, which visitors to the city are happy to use.

Esztergom is definitely a worthwhile destination for a city or study trip.

Travel to beautiful cities in Hungary

Here you will find study trips and round trips through the metropolises of Hungary


Take a round trip to Budapest, the largest city in Hungary and at the same time the ninth largest city in the European Union. Let yourself be seduced by the main sights of the city, which lies on the banks of the Danube. Visit the Gellért Hill with the Statue of Liberty and the Citadel, the Castle Palace, the Matthias Church, the Chain Bridge, the Buda Castle District, the Great Market Hall, the State Opera, the Fishermen’s Bastion, the Parliament, Heroes’ Square, the West and East Train Station, the Museum of the Beautiful Arts and much more, because a study trip to Budapest will leave you wonderful memories.

Sightseeing in Hungary

Russian Revolution

Russian Revolution

Russian Revolution

The Great October Revolution was one of the most relevant and momentous events of the twentieth century, it was a true revolution that shook the world, where the great leading role of Lenin and his Marxist conception that gave rise to the Bolshevik Party stood out.


The October Revolution had as a prelude the armed popular insurrection of 1905, which was defeated by the reactionary tsarist forces, but which did not stop the unwavering desires for change, social welfare and peace that the factory workers and the peasants continued to express in large numbers. the streets and fields of all the Russian geography and that despite the brutal repression this continued to grow until unleashing important violent uprisings of the people against the police and soldiers.

The Russian armed forces demoralized by the Tsar’s inability to face the war, by the loss of territories, by the thousands of troops killed in the war and tormented by the suffering of their families beset by hunger, joined the great uprising that it unleashed. the bourgeois democratic Revolution in February 1917, ousting the Tsarist monarchy led by Emperor Nicholas II, the last representative of the Romanov dynasty that ruled Russia for 300 years from power.

In this first stage of the Revolution, a provisional government chaired by General Kerensky was formed, which initially had the support and expectation of the Russian people who demanded the solution to their serious problems with demands such as: the non-participation of Russia in the First War. World (1914-1918); the elimination of overexploitation of workers with 14- and 18-hour workdays with low wages; hunger and food shortages; for justice and freedom for the peasants who lived in the exploitation and oppression of the landlords and who demanded to have their own land.

This bourgeois democratic revolution did not solve the problems raised. This government continued the war, although the people demanded the speedy signing of the peace, they refused to hand over the land of the landlords to the poor peasants, they refused to satisfy the most prevailing demands of the workers and they also opposed solving the discrimination., the oppression and neglect suffered by hundreds of non-Russian nationalities and kept them devoid of rights.

The government in essence, followed the same policy, preserving the entire tsarist apparatus of oppression in the different localities.


The 25 of October of 1917, [6] the Bolshevik leader Lenin (Vladimir Ilyich Ulyanov), led the uprising in Petrograd, the then capital of Russia, against the provisional government of Alexander Kerensky.

The Red Guard, led by the Bolsheviks, seized the main government buildings before launching a final assault on the Winter Palace during the night of November 7-8. The assault, led by Vladimir Antónov-Ovséyenko, was launched at 21:45 after a volley shot from the Aurora cruiser. The palace was taken around two in the morning of the 8th; November 7 would be officially established as the date of the Revolution.


The heroic days of October – as described by the American journalist John Reed – shook the world. A new epoch has opened for humanity. No subsequent event can overshadow the greatness of the Russian Bolsheviks. The 7 of November of 1917was conjugated to the top of the European political intelligentsia with the revolutionary spirit of the Russian working class and the struggle of the peasants for land and rights.

The exploits of 1917 and the years in which Lenin led the process constitute milestones of exemplary and imperishable value in the struggle of the peoples for the conquest of freedom. For years and decades, the communists and the people of the USSR fought colossal battles and made prodigious advances in the economic, social, political, cultural and military fields. In a relatively short historical time, they turned the impoverished and exploited country they inherited into a world power of the first order.

The Russian Revolution was the first to be won by the proletariat, since the French Revolution – bourgeois in character – left intact capitalist private ownership of the means of production as the prevailing economic system. Instead, the Russian Revolution was the tangible proof that the outcasts of the earth needed to be sure that Marx’s dream was not unreal.

The Great October Socialist Revolution opened for Humanity a new era, that of the passage from the theory of scientific socialism to the human practice of socialism.

After the October Revolution

After the victory of the Bolsheviks, according to topschoolsintheusa, Russia suffered a civil war (1918-1922) between the supporters of the Bolshevik revolution (Red Army) and its opponents (White Army), the latter, supported by various foreign powers.

After the triumph of the Red Army, the Soviet Union was established in December 1922 as the union of the Soviet republics of Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, and Transcaucasia.

Founding of the Soviet Union

The 29 of December of 1922 a conference of plenipotentiary delegations of Russia, Transcaucasia, Ukraine and Belarus approved the Treaty on the Creation of the USSR and the Declaration of Creation of the USSR, forming the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.

These two documents were confirmed by the first Soviet Congress of the USSR and signed by the heads of the delegations Mikhail Kalinin, Mikha Tskhakaya, Mikhail Frunze and Grigory Petrovsky, and Aleksandr Chervyakov respectively on December 30, 1922. On 1 February as as 1924 the USSR was recognized by the British Empire, which at that time was the first world power.

The intensive restructuring of the country’s economy, industry and politics began from the early days of Soviet power in 1917. One of the most prominent advances was the GOELRO plan, which called for a profound restructuring of the Soviet economy based on total electrification. from the country.

The Plan began in 1920, developing over a period of 10 to 15 years. It included the construction of a network of 30 regional power plants, including ten large hydroelectric plants, and the electrification of numerous industrial companies. The Plan became the prototype for the subsequent Five-Year Plan (USSR) practically ending in 1931.

Russian Revolution

Bulgaria Brief History

Bulgaria Brief History

Bulgaria is almost always associated with beautiful beaches on the Black Sea by holidaying Swedes. But the country has much more to offer a traveler than this.

According to Aristmarketing, the country we today call Bulgaria has a very long, and often dramatic history. In the 6th century BC, parts of the country were inhabited by Thracians, an Indo-European people. Then it was taken by Greeks, Macedonians, Romans and Turks. The first Bulgarian kingdom was founded as early as the 680s AD and the country is thus one of Europe’s oldest. Bulgaria therefore has many historically interesting places and monuments to visit. There are also scenic places and an interesting folk life, especially in the countryside.

My journey in Bulgaria began, and ended, in the capital Sofia.

For almost three weeks I visited different regions and places around Bulgaria. I had access to a rental car for fourteen days and drove 2,680 kilometers with it, which gave me the opportunity to visit places off the beaten track; to mountain villages with several hundred year old wooden houses where life seemed to stand still. Donkey carts are still used here as a means of transport, in the villages the geese often walked peacefully on the cobbled village streets and from the villages the shepherds went out with their herds to graze in the early morning hours. In southwestern Bulgaria are the mountain areas of Rila, Pirin and Rhodopi, with good hiking opportunities. In the mountains are beautiful monasteries, several of which are on the UNESCO World Heritage List. In the cities, Western consumer society is pushing harder, for better or worse.

Driving a car in Bulgaria is a challenge, often with life at stake, every time you get in the car!

Bulgaria has a very interesting offer to offer a committed traveler, much more than just the bathing life on the Black Sea! Unfortunately, many people miss this out of the almost 5 million tourists who visit Bulgaria every year.

Bulgaria – History in brief

Older history

Traces of humanity have been found in Bulgaria dating to 6,000 BC. At this time, it was people who engaged in hunting and fishing and were nomadic. Later, more permanent residents came to the region, which affected future development.

At the end of the fourth millennium BC, ethnic groups migrated from Central Europe, merging with the people already living in the region.

The first ethnic group known by name to inhabit parts of the area we today call Bulgaria were the Thracians, an Indo-European people. The most famous remains after them are several famous burial sites. The foremost tomb has been found in the city of Kazanlak and is more than 2,000 years old. Other interesting remains are the palace ruins at the cities of Plovdiv, Pliska and Veliko Tarnovo.

The kingdom of the Thracian reached its peak in the sixth century BCE

Some Thracian tribes established close contact with the Greeks who began colonizing the Black Sea coast in the 8th century BC.

At the end of the 600s BC. the Persians invaded the kingdom of the Thracians.

In the 300s BC, Thrace was conquered by the Macedonian king Philip II, father of Alexander the Great. Philip founded the city of Philipolis, which today is called Plovdiv. Remains remain after his city.

The Romans became the power factor in the region after they defeated the Macedonians in 168 BC. but it took almost two hundred years to defeat the rebellious Thracians altogether. The Romans founded two provinces in the ancient Thracian Empire, one in the north and one in the south. They came to rule the region for almost 400 years. When the Roman Empire was divided in 395, Thrace came under the Eastern Roman Empire Byzantium.

In the 6th century, a Turkish cavalry, the Bulgarians, invaded the country from the steppes north of the Black Sea. Within a couple of centuries, the Bulgarians had been integrated into the Slavic population that had invaded the area in the 5th century.

The first Bulgarian kingdom, founded in 681 and lasting until 1018, periodically posed a threat to Byzantium. In the ninth century, Orthodox Christianity was adopted as the official religion under King Boris I. Under his son, Tsar Simeon I, the kingdom was the most powerful. After Simeon’s reign, Bulgaria was weakened by recurring wars. In 1014, the country suffered a severe defeat in the battles against Byzantium. The Byzantine ruler Basileios II made himself known as Bulgaroktonos, meaning the Bulgarian killer, after ordering his soldiers to stick out the eyes of 14,000 Bulgarian prisoners of war. Four years later, all of Bulgaria was under Byzantine control and Byzantium came to rule the country for almost 200 years.

In 1185, the Bulgarians successfully revolted and formed a new kingdom based in Tarnovo. But the war continued; against Byzantines, Mongols, Serbs, Hungarians and Christian crusaders. In addition, the empire was weakened by internal strife and peasant uprisings.

The Turks took over the Bulgarian kingdom in 1396. It was the beginning of a hard and long occupation that lasted for almost 500 years and even today the Bulgarians call this period “the Turkish yoke”.

The almost 500 years, 1396 – 1878, of Turkish (Ottoman) rule meant a stagnation of Bulgarian culture.

During the 19th century, a nationalist revival grew strong in the country and a Bulgarian uprising against the Turks was answered with extensive massacres. The outside world reacted strongly to this.

In 1878, Russia invaded Bulgaria and expelled the Turks, who had been weakened by many wars. At the peace of San Stefano the same year, Russia decided that a Greater Bulgaria, under Russian protection, would be established. Other major powers, fearful of too much Russian influence in the Balkans, opposed the peace agreement. At the Berlin Congress in 1878, Greater Bulgaria was divided between five countries. The Bulgarians gained autonomy over an area, albeit formally under Turkish rule.

At the end of the 19th century, the first political parties in the country were formed. In 1891, the Social Democratic Party was founded, from which later the Bulgarian Communist Party arose.

History of Bulgaria, modern 1900 – 1999


King Ferdinand proclaimed Bulgaria’s independence when a coup took place in Turkey


In the First Balkan War, the country achieved great success.


In the Second Balkan War, Bulgaria lost the lands it had won in 1912

1912 -1918

Hoping to recapture Macedonia, the country allied with Germany and Austria during World War I. When it became clear that the war would be lost, King Ferdinand resigned. He was replaced by his son, Boris III


Aleksander Stambolijski, leader of the Agrarian Party, became Prime Minister. Under his authoritarian rule, a land reform was implemented and a progressive income tax was introduced


Aleksander Stambolijski was overthrown and murdered by a right-wing group


A communist coup attempt failed

1920s, late and 1930s, beginning

Bulgaria was governed alternately by coalition governments and military regimes. Farmers and communists were forced into exile


Through a military-backed coup, an authoritarian regime came to power


Dissatisfaction with the regime was exploited by King Boris III and he himself took power

1940s, early

The Bulgarians give Germany permission to use the country as a base for attacks on Yugoslavia and Greece


The Bulgarians occupy the Yugoslav part of Macedonia and take part in World War II on the side of the Axis powers, but refuse to take part in the war against the Soviet Union


King Boris III dies. His six-year-old son Simeon II succeeds the
Foster Front, formed in 1942, fighting the Germans


The Red Army occupies Bulgaria. The patriotic front, dominated by the Communist Party and supported by the Soviets, appoints a new government.


Bulgaria is declared a People’s Republic and King Simeon II goes into exile The
Foster Front gets over 70% of the vote in the first elections and Communist Party Secretary Georgi Dimitrov was elected Prime Minister


The new position is introduced after the Soviet model.
The multi-party system is abolished. Communist Party and Agrarian Party become only allowed parties
Major purges were carried out and over 2,000 people were sentenced to death


Introduced collective leadership according to Soviet model. The post of party leader went to Todor Zhivkov. He came to dominate the country’s politics for over 30 years. Bulgaria becomes one of the most loyal allies of the Soviet Union. Planned economy was introduced, the earth was collectivized and heavy industry was built up

1980s, early

The country is suffering from economic stagnation, which leads to dissatisfaction with the regime

1980s, mid

Bulgaria was affected by the new openness in the Soviet Union.


The country’s leader Todor Zhivkov launches a variant of Mikhail Gorbachev’s reform policy perestroika, called preustrojstvo.


Allowed for the first time independent candidates in the local elections

1980s, late

Political awareness increased and new opposition groups were formed. The environmental movement Ecoglasnost and human rights associations played an important role
The Turkish minority openly protests against the regime’s repression


A “palace coup” was carried out and Todor Zhivkov was overthrown. He is replaced by Petar Mladenov, who promised extensive political and economic change. The
Communist Party renounced the monopoly of power and gave opposition parties the right to operate freely.


More than 200,000 Bulgarians demanded in a demonstration in Sofia in February that the Communist Party relinquish power. The government is forced to introduce multi-party systems and call elections. Communist Party changes name to Bulgaria’s Socialist Party
In the first democratic elections in June, the Socialist Party won a majority of parliamentary seats
President Mladenov is forced to resign after revelations he proposed military action against protesters 1989 The
Socialist government resigns in November


In the September election, an anti-communist alliance won. Filip Dimitrov became Prime Minister


In the first democratic presidential election, Zhelju Zhelev won.


The government was led by the non-partisan Ljuben Berov. Under his leadership, several former communist politicians were prosecuted for embezzlement of state funds, including former President Todor Zhivkov, who was sentenced in 1994 to seven years in prison.
In December 1994, parliamentary elections were held for the third time in five years. The BSP party, which was still dominated by former communists, returned to power through promises of economic recovery without major cuts in social welfare.

1990s, mid

Bulgaria is marked by demonstrations and social unrest. Inflation was up to several hundred percent, the currency floated freely and the central government debt increased sharply. The banking system was in acute crisis. Starvation occurred among the country’s inhabitants


In the presidential election in November, Petar Stojanov from the UDF won a landslide victory over the government candidate Ivan Mazarov. Mass demonstrations took place across the country against the economic crisis.


In January, protesters stormed parliament, injuring two hundred people. The
April parliamentary elections were won by the bourgeois alliance United Democratic Forces, which immediately launched economic reforms and privatizations, resulting in the stabilization of the economy. UDF leader Ivan Kostov was appointed Prime Minister


Despite economic growth, unemployment rose, which contributed to dissatisfaction with the government for supporting NATO’s intervention in the Kosovo crisis. As a result of the war there, the EU wanted to accelerate membership for countries in the Balkans

Bulgaria Brief History

Travel to Italy

Travel to Italy

The laundry hangs to dry above the narrow streets between the beautifully earth-colored house facades in Rome’s old working-class neighborhood of Trastevere. A group of little boys kick a ball against a wall. A young guy with sunglasses on his forehead puts down his Vespa and greets the old, espresso-drinking men at the small outdoor coffee bar. They start talking right away and you do not need to know Italian to understand what it is about. The subject is football, and names from Juventus and Fiorentina fly through the air, mingling with the sound of the heavy traffic and the smell of simmering pasta marinara. It’s a holiday in Italy.

Population: 62 mill.

Capital: Gypsy

Language: Italian

Italians for many years have been proud of their culinary art. When McDonald’s opened in Rome in 1986, cooking enthusiasts handed out spaghetti to remind them of Italy’s culinary roots.

As recently as 1914, six women were prosecuted in Sardinia. Their crime? To practice witchcraft!


Of Italy’s 62 million inhabitants, 2.8 million live in the country’s magnificent capital, and every year the city is visited by people from all over the world, who want to see with their own eyes some of the world’s most famous historic buildings: the Roman Forum and the Colosseum. the time of the empire when slaves fought for their lives against other gladiators or wild animals. And of course the Vatican with the impressive Sistine Chapel and the breathtaking view from the top of St. Peter’s Church. The Pantheon, the Trevi Fountain and Caesar’s famous aqueducts also help attract thousands of tourists to the city. Rome is also the city of life-lovers, and between the obligatory sightseeing you should also set aside time to wander around Villa Borghese,


If you say fashion and Italy in the same breath, it is impossible to escape Milan. If you are looking for fashion experiences of the ultra-hip kind, you should take a walk along Via Monte Napoleone where extravagant shops are in a row or on Vittorio Emanuele II where the fashion-conscious Italians walk their own catwalk down the street. Northern Italy’s major industrial city is also known as the home of successful brands and industrial companies such as Pirelli, Campari and Alfa Romeo. However, the city’s dominant symbol is the impressive Duomo Cathedral with its many sculptures and spiers, which took almost 500 years to complete.

Northern Italy

Near Milan, on the sunny side of the Alps, are the beautiful lakes of Lake Como and Maggiore, Lugano and Orta and further inland the beautiful Lake Garda that many Scandinavians remember as one of the first major tourist destinations in Italy. If you are in those areas, you should also take the opportunity to see Verona, which in addition to the story of Romeo and Juliet is known for its beautiful amphitheater where you can see opera performances in the open air.

There is also music in Venice, both on weekdays around St. Mark’s Square, during the carnival in February and when the gondolier lets the gondola glide along the Grand Canal. The fascinating canal city with the Doge’s Palace, the Bridge of Sighs and the many beautiful palaces tempts many to spend their holidays here. There are also many beautiful castles and palaces in Florence, and beautiful is also the old, characteristically green-striped marble cathedral with the neo-Gothic facade. However, Florence should also be experienced in the large, colorful market around Piazza San Lorenzo.

Southern Italy and Sicily

According to top-medical-schools, Southern Italy holds several chapters, and if you go to Naples, in addition to the intense entertainment in the famous Spaccana police district, you should also make an excursion to the top of Vesuvius. And of course also to Pompeii, which almost two thousand years ago got to feel the forces of the volcano when the ancient Roman city was buried under several meters thick ash. There is the opportunity to experience other volcanic activity in Sicily where Etna with a height of 3,323 meters and a crater diameter of 40 km is Europe’s largest volcano. One can, for example, look at Etna from a distance from the breathtaking Sicilian town of Taormina which is located on a 200 meter high cliff ledge overlooking the Ionian Sea.

Also visit Sicily’s most important port city, Messina, which has roots that stretch all the way back to Greek mythology. Many of the city’s historic buildings were destroyed during several earthquakes in the 20th century, but since then the city has been rebuilt. The city’s symbol is the world’s largest astronomical clock, the Orologio Astronomico in Piazza del Duomo, which makes a sound every day at Battle 12. The city’s impressive cathedral, the Duomo, is also worth a closer look. A holiday in Italy is also a beach holiday. The Italian Riviera, the Adriatic coast, the Mediterranean, the Amalfi Coast, the bathing lakes or the islands in the Gulf of Naples all offer great opportunities to combine great cultural experiences with a relaxing sun holiday.

Travel to Italy

Travel to Formentera, Spain

Travel to Formentera, Spain

Formentera (Balearic Islands)

With the boat it takes about half an hour to reach the island of Formentera from Ibiza. Formentera is a Balearic island with a feel-good character and high relaxation value. Calm, enchanting landscape and nature together with crystalline water contribute to this attribute.

Formentera is the fourth largest of the Balearic Islands, the size of thesmallIsland is just 82 square kilometers. Except for two plateaus, it is extremely flat. The two elevations are in the south. These are light chalk hills with the 107 meters high Puig Guillem and the massif of La Mola (192 meters high). Both are located on Cabo de Berbería and are connected by a flat, narrow headland.

The history of Formentera is not as well documented. However, this Balearic island has a multitude of relics from prehistory.

The climate in Formentera is said to be the healthiest in Spain. The air is relatively clean and the climate is temperate. All of the places on the island are no further than 10 km from the sea, so you can feel the well-known balancing effect of the water on the entire island.

The summers are dry and warm, but not too hot, the winters are usually very humid. The time from late spring to early autumn is excellent for a trip to Formentera. Rainfalls can be expected from mid-October to the end of February. When choosing clothing, you should think of sturdy shoes for hiking and in the evening you often need a jacket on the islands, and you shouldn’t forget to wear rain gear. Formentera has only one country road. You can get around the island by rental car, bus, taxi or rent a scooter. If you want to be active, take a bike tour, certainly a nice alternative to enjoy the beauty of the island. The port of La Sabina in Formentera can be reached regularly by ship from Eivissa in Ibiza. In addition, you can translate with a motorboat.

The capital of the island is Sant Francesc Xavier, better known by his Castilian name “San Francisco”. The town hall is here, as well as the main post office and the Formentera police station.

La Savina, a small port settlement on the island, is intended more as a transit station for most visitors to the island. The first impression is modern and a little impersonal. There is also a huge marina in La Savina, which in summer hosts yachts from all over the world. A visit to one of the harbor cafés lets you watch the hustle and bustle when the boats arrive or depart.

A popular anchorage for small boats can be found in the Estany des Peix salt lake which is southwest of La Savina. It is an important resting area for water birds and is also part of a nature reserve under special protection. Bathing is not very tempting here.

The Estany Pudent located east of La Savina. He is also called the “smelly fairy”. This is a brackish lake that develops a disgusting smell on very hot days and also attracts a large number of mosquitoes. To the north of the lake are the Salines Marroig, known as the largest salt pans on the Balearic island of Formentera. The salt pans on the island have been out of service for years, but they are of great importance for the ecosystem and therefore enjoy the status of “Reserva Natural de ses Salines” special protection.

The island has a tourist mecca: “Es Pujols”. Mostly package travelers spend their vacation here, but compared to Ibiza or Mallorca, for example, it has a rather village-like character.

Other attractions include: the Església Sant Francesc Xavier, built in 1726, a small chapel, Sa Tanca Vella, from the 14th century and the Folklore Museum Museu Etnològic with a collection of old costumes, tools and photos. Visit for Spain travel destinations.

Many different habitats on Formentera allow diverse plant species to spread. Especially in spring, the blaze of color is huge and even on “poor” soils, there are real seas of flowers. Numerous herbs and wild flowers grow here, as well as capers, gorse, oleander, dwarf palms and lemons.

The wildlife in Formentera has not much to offer. There is a wide variety of reptiles, birds, and insects. Many butterflies, flamingos, lizards and the osprey are among the residents of the island.

Formentera geography

Formentera belongs to the archipelago of the Balearic Islands and is located in the western Mediterranean in the Gulf of Valencia. It is the fourth largest and at the same time the southernmost island of the autonomous community of the Balearic Islands. At the same time, Formentera belongs to the independent archipelago of the Pityuses, which consists of the neighboring island of Ibiza and many small rocky islets.

Formentera is about 100 kilometers from mainland Spain and about 250 kilometers from the African continent. The distance to Ibiza is about twelve kilometers. The total area of ​​Formentera is 83 square kilometers. The island is around 14 kilometers long and can have a maximum width of 15 kilometers. Of the The main town of the island is Sant Francesc de Formentera.

Formentera is only separated from its neighboring island of Ibiza by a narrow arm of water. Although the island is not large, it can boast an almost spectacular variety of landscapes. Sandy beaches alternate with steep cliffs, and the interior of the island is characterized by pine forests, barren heather and fertile fields and orchards.

The otherwise rather flat Formentera consists of the two plateaus Cap de Barbària in the southwest and La Mola in the east. A narrow, flat isthmus connects the two small high plateaus. Sa Talaiassa is located on La Mola and, at only 192 meters, is the highest point on Formentera. Overall, the elevation profile is much lower than on Ibiza. The island’s 69-kilometer coastline is characterized by extremely long sandy beaches and very rocky cliffs.

As in Ibiza, Formentera has the salt pan so characteristic of the Pityusen archipelago. This typical landscape for the island emerged about six million years ago, when Formentera, which at that time still consisted of a mountain range, protruded from a desert of salt deposits and salty swamps.

Travel to Formentera, Spain

Bosnia and Herzegovina Human Geography

Bosnia and Herzegovina Human Geography

In Bosnia and Herzegovina, the process of recomposing the ethnic-social identity of the state developed over the course of almost five years of war, which ended with the Dayton agreements (November 21, 1995). The new administrative aggregation has its basis in the ethnic cleansing operations implemented during the conflict, which have determined a clearer territorial division between those ethnic groups that previously lived integrated, even if, obviously, in some areas the presence of the ‘one or the other. The Muslim residents of Bosnia and Herzegovina were the majority to the South of Sarajevo, in the strip of territory between Mostar and the Lim river, and also in the area of ​​Tuzla and to the West of Banja Luka; to the W of Sarajevo they lived together with the Serbs, while they shared with the Croats the area that stretched to the East of this city, become a multi-religious island. In total, Muslims of the entire population were almost half. The Croats, on the other hand, were predominant among the residents of the western part of the country (Dinaric Alps), of the lower valley of the Neretva, as well as in the north in Posavina near the border with the Croatia.

According to iamhigher, Serbs predominated in the remaining parts of Bosnia and Herzegovina, ie over half of the territory. On the occasion of the 1991 census, 5.5% of the residents not wanting to recognize himself in any of the three constitutive nations, he declared himself a Yugoslav; the remaining population was made up mostly of Roma, Jews (especially in Sarajevo), and then Hungarians and Romanians, concentrated in the border areas with Vojvodina and, finally, Ruthenians. The data relating to the population concerning the period after the war, the result of estimates only, since a general census has not been carried out since then, may be conditioned by the uncertainty on the number of refugee returns to their pre-war residences, but they are nevertheless useful for provide an overview. A 2000 estimate estimated the population to be approx. 3,972,000 residents and therefore considerably lower than that recorded by the 1991 census (4,377,033 residents). This decrease is attributable to the upheavals brought about by the civil war: it is estimated that, between 1992 and 1995, in addition to more or less 260,000 deaths from war causes, approx. 2,100,000 people were forced to leave their residences and take refuge in Croatia, Yugoslavia and many foreign countries. Since 1998, these refugees have begun to return home, although many have preferred to reside permanently abroad. In 1999, following the bombing of the NATO against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, there was a substantial influx of refugees (80,000 people): Albanians from Kosovo, Muslims towards the Federation, Serbs towards the Serbian Republic. The refugee problem represents one of the most serious social problems in Bosnia and Herzegovina, with very substantial economic and legal implications. The country is characterized by a low population density (75 residents km²), a fertility rate (1.2 in 2008) in line with the values ​​of economically advanced Europe, as well as by a strong housing dispersion, with an urban population of 48 % (2008), one of the lowest percentages in Europe.

In 1991 there were 38 cities with over 10,000 residents, while later the settlement structure changed radically. Many cities (including Sarajevo itself and Tuzla) that served as regional hubs have lost their hinterland traditional, assigned to the other constitutive entity of the state. In fact, after 1995 it was cut by internal borders on the basis of the military situation existing at the time of the signing of the agreements, and not on functional requirements. Capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as of the Federation, as well as of the Croatian-Muslim ethnic group, is the city of Sarajevo, whose population, at the 1991 census, amounted to over 400,000 residents, while subsequently it dropped to 304,065 (2007 estimate). The city, during the conflict of 1992-95, suffered very serious damage both at a structural level and due to the loss of fundamental evidence of its historical memory: an example is the destruction of the National Library. However after the war, benefiting from much more international assistance than other locations in the state, it has largely been rebuilt and renovated. Second city in the country is Banja Luka, capital of the Serbian Republic, followed by other urban centers, all smaller than 100,000 residents, among which the most important are Zenica, Tuzla and Mostar, also known for its ancient bridge bombed in the 1992-95 war and then rebuilt in 2004 thanks to international funding.

Bosnia and Herzegovina Country and People

Travel to Norway

Travel to Norway

Area: 385,207 sq km
Population: 5,328,212 (1 January 2019)
Population density: 14 E / km²
Government: hereditary monarchy
system of government: constitutional monarchy
Neighboring countries: Sweden, Finland, Russia
state capital: Oslo
Language: Norwegian
Regional official languages: Sami, Finnish
82 % Lutheran State Church,
3.7% other Protestants,
1.6% Muslims,
1.1% Catholics,
0.2% Jehovah’s Witnesses,
0.2% Buddhists
Currency: Norwegian krone (NOK)
1 NOK = 100 Øre
Exchange rates:
1 EUR = 10.32 NOK
1 NOK = 0.097 EUR
1 CHF = 9.50 NOK
1 NOK = 0.105 CHF
(rate from 13.07.2021)
Telephone area code: +47
Time zone: UTC + 1 CET
UTC + 2 CEST (March to Oct)

In 2020, 923 Germans officially emigrated to Norway and 694 came back to their homeland. Within the 10 years from 2010 to 2019, 12,464 Germans officially emigrated to Norway and 8,383 moved back to Germany. This Scandinavian country landed on the 7th place on the satisfaction list of all emigration destinations.

Around 700,000 immigrants currently live in Norway and are very welcome here. Many of the 25,287 (in 2020) Germans live especially in the larger cities (Oslo, Bergen, Trondheim, Stavanger) and the metropolitan areas (in and around Fredrikstad and Sarpsborg as well as in and around Drammen and Øvre Eiker). The most densely populated (about 80 percent of the only 5.3 million residents) is the south of the country, as it offers more connections to other countries on the European continent and a milder climate than the rest of the country.

The Scandinavian Mountains, which run parallel to the Atlantic coast from southwest to northeast, divide Norway into two climate zones. The 2,650 km long coastal region has a maritime climate with a lot of precipitation and relatively mild temperatures. The sea is largely ice-free even in winter, as the passing North Atlantic current is quite warm. On the east side of the mountains, the continental climate results in less precipitation, colder winters and warmer summers.

The many narrow and deep bays (fjords) result in an approximately 25,000 km long coastline. In addition, around 150,000 islands surround the country. Large parts of the coast are rocky. There is only a little sandy beach in sheltered places. The landscape of Norway is characterized by the Scandinavian mountains with mountain ranges and barren plateaus. The highest point is Galdhøpiggen at 2,469 meters.

Over 40,000 lakes and far more moors and wetlands in extensive forest areas as well as a lot of untouched nature offer many animals and plants enough living space. Over 1,300 species of seed plants and ferns, 12,000 species of lichen, over 800 species of moss and around 10,000 species of mushrooms live here. Moose, musk ox, arctic fox, reindeer and wolverine are just as indigenous as many bird species.

What makes Norway so popular

According to allcitycodes, Norway is known as a rough country, but for many it is a natural paradise between the fjords, the Arctic Circle and the North Sea. It attracts with very well-paid jobs and a very high standard of living, where you can even put up with the higher prices. A first-class level of education, good social services and excellent medical care ensure stability with the good economy. And besides work, there is still enough serenity, being together with the family and free time in nature.

Family is very important in Norway. There are hardly any couples without children. Several children are also not uncommon. Family-friendly working hours and understanding employers make such a life possible. The school system is also very good, so that the little ones don’t lack anything.

School attendance is compulsory up to the age of 16. Many children then go on to school and attend the preparatory school branch, the upper level of the gymnasium. Alternatively, there is the preparatory school branch, comparable to an apprenticeship and vocational school. You learn in Norwegian. The country offers free language lessons for immigrant children. Each municipality must also provide enough places for foreign children. Most of the studies are in English. Norwegian students are entitled to a student loan for a living. There are also many options for adult education.

There are no big metropolises. Even the largest cities do not have many residents, but they spread a special charm with their branched alleys and small huts or stately wooden houses as well as with their tranquil shops and cafés. The residents spend a lot of time outdoors, hiking or on the terraces. Every sunlight is used. If you drive into the country, you can hike for hours in many places without seeing a person.

As a north Germanic people, the Norwegians are closely related to the Germans. 40% of the words in Norwegian, including many of the most common words, are of Low German origin. This makes it easy to learn Norwegian as a German speaker. German is also taught as a foreign language in schools in many places. Another important foreign language here is English.

Popular cities

You can feel the international flair most clearly in the Oslo conurbation (capital) with its almost 1 million residents. Around 30% of all residents are foreigners. There is the largest range of jobs and leisure opportunities here. Due to the largest university in Norway, many students and young people also live here.

Also Bergen has a university. Almost 300,000 people live in this second largest city in Norway. Bergen is particularly known for its port, from which many cruise ships leave for the Hurtigruten. The small, colorful houses with many shops and souvenir shops running along the quay are unmistakable. The houses have been a World Heritage Site since 1979.

Stavanger, with around 130,000 residents, is often the starting point for one of the many ski areas. Another attraction for tourists is the Pulpit Rock, a large overhanging rock from which you can dangle your legs hundreds of meters deep in the air. Stavanger is also known for its cathedral, the country’s longest sandy beach and the annual jazz festival. As the former European Capital of Culture, Stavanger has a lot to offer culturally.

Trondheim is a city with a good 190,000 residents on the Trondheimer Fjord in central Norway. Many of the approximately 30,000 students are enrolled at the NTNU Technical University. Trondheim is the center for retail in the northern region and an important transport hub where the Hurtigruten ships also dock. The rich cultural offer includes the symphony orchestra, theaters and museums as well as jazz.

General travel regulations (up to the corona pandemic)

EU residents do not need a residence permit or work permit for Norway. You can take up a job or study. For a longer stay, it is advisable to enter the country with a passport, as the identity card is not recognized by many Norwegian authorities.

Travel to Norway

Places to Visit in Riga

Places to Visit in Riga

Latvia – the country in the center of the Baltic States! Because the country is largely forested moraine hill country, it offers many opportunities for hikers. Latvia also has access to the Baltic Sea, where numerous bathing and health resorts await. Do not miss the old Hanseatic city of Riga. During a walk through the capital of Latvia you will discover the Petri Church, the House of the Blackheads, the Baroque Rundale Palace near Bauska and in the New Town you can admire the numerous Art Nouveau houses such as the TV tower, the Palace of Culture and Science or the Central Market. Do not forget the cities of Dünaburg, Libau or Mitau. You will be amazed by a tour of Latvia! Visit thedressexplorer for Top 10 Sights in Latvia.

Riga Cathedral

Cathedral Church of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Latvia

Riga Cathedral is a church in Latvia’s capital, Riga. As the cathedral of the Evangelical or Lutheran Church of Latvia, it is the largest church in the Baltic States. The Riga Cathedral was built on the orders of the first Riga Bishop Albert von Buxthoeven. In 1226 it was finished to the point that a synod with William of Modena as the Pope’s legacy could take place in it. For 300 years, the Riga Cathedral was the cathedral of the Riga diocese. The date of consecration of the church could not yet be determined because it has not been recorded.

History and Development

In 1563, with the collapse of Old Livonia in the Livonian War, Riga was also the first Catholic archbishopric to perish. From then on, the Riga Cathedral served the German-speaking, Evangelical-Lutheran population. From 1959 to 1962 the cathedral served as a concert hall. The church and monastery originally stood on a hill outside the city walls. Today it is below the level of the streets because they were piled up several times to reduce the risk of flooding by the river Daugava. The original structure of the cathedral is hardly recognizable today due to multiple, not to be underestimated conversions.

Style and design

The oldest components of the Riga Cathedral are the choir and transept. The nave impresses with its pointed arches, the pillars of which are adorned by pillars with capitals. The cloister in the southern part of the cathedral also dates from Bishop Albert’s time. The north portal, on the other hand, is of Gothic origin. The tower with its height of 90 meters impresses with its design in the baroque style. In 1524, the original design of the church fell victim to the Reformation attackers. In 1547 the fire in the cathedral did the rest. Today the interior of the Riga Cathedral is baroque to mannerist. The baroque carvings on the wooden pulpit, the memorial stone of the small guilds from the 19th century and the grave of Meinhard, the first Livonian bishop, are particularly worth seeing. Another special feature of the Riga Cathedral is its bell made of dawn,

Art Nouveau district in Riga

Art Nouveau architecture is omnipresent in the Latvian capital Riga. Some buildings are witnesses of this art-historical epoch, which was built around the turn of the century (19th to 20th century). The wonderfully decorated facades are magnificent and attract the eyes of the visitors. The historic center of Riga has been declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

Sights in Riga’s Art Nouveau district

Riga is one of the few cities in Europe in which numerous buildings, design objects and art nouveau art have been preserved. Around 800 buildings have been built here in Art Nouveau style. These are especially located in the center of the city, mostly on Albert Straße (Alberta iela). Other beautiful buildings in Art Nouveau style are, for example, on Elisabeth Strasse (Elizabetes iela).

There is also a museum on Albertstrasse that is entirely dedicated to Art Nouveau. The Art Nouveau Museum is in an apartment where Konstantīns Pēkšēns lived until 1907. The well-known architect designed some buildings in Riga – also in the Art Nouveau style. This also includes the building in which he himself lived. In the museum, visitors can see objects from that period. Here you will find, among other things, a fireplace room, a dining room and a bedroom. In addition, the guests of the museum have the opportunity to try on women’s and men’s hats from the Art Nouveau period and to take photos.

Travel to the Art Nouveau district in Riga

Study trips to Riga in Latvia are not only fascinating for those interested in art, but also for everyone who would like to get an impression of the splendid era of Art Nouveau and see the imposing capital of Latvia by the sea.

Places to Visit in Riga

Denmark History

Denmark History

Unification of the empire and the Kalmar Union

After bloody civil wars (from 1131) and turmoil of the throne (from 1146) Waldemar I restored peace and unity to the country in 1157. He and his sons Canute VI. as well as Waldemar II. subjugated the pagan turns of the Mecklenburg-Pomerania Baltic coast, in 1201 the German Holstein and in 1219 Estonia; the Wendish-German conquests were lost again by the defeat against the north German princes at Bornhöved (1227). After the death of Waldemar II (1241) there was again a period of civil wars up to the election of Waldemar IV. Atterdag (1340), who succeeded in regaining the lost territories. In 1346 he sold the Duchy of Estonia to the Teutonic Order, conquered Scania back from Sweden in 1360 and occupied Gotland in 1361 (taking Visby). There were repeated conflicts with the German Hanseatic League, which ended in the Peace of Stralsund in 1370 with the Danish recognition of the dominance of the Hanseatic League in the Baltic Sea. Visit weddinginfashion for Prehistory of Northern Europe.

His underage grandson and successor Olaf was under the tutelage of his mother Margarete, who became regent in Denmark and Norway in 1387. After they had also acquired Sweden in 1389, they brought about the Kalmar Union of the Three Kingdoms in 1397, which existed with interruptions until 1521/23. After the queen’s death (1412), her nephew, Erich VII of Pomerania, succeeded her rule in the three countries. He had to wage war against the Holstein counts, who were later supported by the Hanseatic cities. Between 1439 and 1442 King was Erich dropped in all three countries. Eric’s nephew and successor Christoph III. (from Bavaria) could still maintain the union, but after his death (1448) the Swedes elected Charles VIII Knutsson, the Danes Christian I as king.

World War II and post-war period

In 1939 Denmark signed a non-aggression pact with the German Reich; nevertheless it was occupied by German troops on April 9, 1940. The Stauning government protested, but remained in office. In 1941 Denmark joined the Anti-Comintern Pact under German pressure. The policy of negotiation and cooperation with the occupying power were increasingly rejected by the Danish population; In October 1943, in an unprecedented action, the Jews (around 7,000) who were threatened with deportation to extermination camps in their country helped them to flee to Sweden. The Danish Freedom Council, founded in 1943, increasingly coordinated the resistance. A state of emergency was declared on August 29, 1943. The government resigned, King Christian X. was imprisoned at Amalienborg Palace, the army disarmed. The Danish fleet sank itself. At the end of the war, Denmark was recognized as an ally of the victorious powers. In 1944 Iceland dissolved the union with Denmark.

In 1945, Vilhelm Buhl (* 1881, † 1954) formed a government from among the parties and the resistance, which annulled all laws passed under German pressure and took measures against collaborators. In 1945 Denmark was a co-founder of the UN and participated in the occupation of Germany. Under the government of the liberal Knud Kristensen (* 1895, † 1962; 1945-47) efforts to annex parts of Schleswig failed due to the resistance of the Folketing. In 1947 Friedrich IX ascended the throne.

Orientation towards the West and Euroscepticism

1947–50, 1953–55 was headed the government by the social democrat Hans Hedtoft (* 1903, † 1955), 1950–53 by the liberal Erik Eriksen (* 1902, † 1972). During this time the Faroe Islands received self-government (1948), Greenland became part of Denmark (1953) and received self-government in 1979. In 1953 a new constitution came into force (unicameral system, female succession). In 1955, Denmark and the Federal Republic of Germany signed the Bonn-Copenhagen Declaration on the national minorities of both sides. In 1949 Denmark joined the Council of Europe and joined the North Atlantic Pact. In 1960 it became a member of EFTA, but at the same time applied for admission to the European Economic Community.

From 1955–68 the Social Democrats H. C. Hansen (1955–60), Viggo Kampmann (* 1910, † 1976; 1960–62) and J. O. Krag (1962–68) led the government. Contrary to Denmark’s official position to be a nuclear weapon-free territory, the then Prime Minister Hansen had in 1957In a secret letter from the US (only made public in 1995), it allowed the storage of nuclear weapons at its Greenland military base in Thule and the flight over the area with nuclear-armed aircraft. When an American military aircraft of the type B-52 with four hydrogen bombs on board crashed near the base in 1968, the area around the accident site was severely radioactive and hundreds of workers involved in the rescue and clean-up operations were exposed to dangerous radiation (only 1995 decision, to pay severance payments to the 300–400 survivors).

1968–71 Hilmar Baunsgaard (* 1920, † 1989) was Prime Minister (Radical Venstre, Conservative; defense and administrative reform). 1971–72 again led Krag, 1972–73 his social democratic party friend A. Jørgensen, the government 1972 Margaret II ascended the throne. In 1973 Denmark joined the European Communities (at the same time membership of the EFTA expired). After the parliamentary elections of 1973, in which the traditional parties suffered heavy losses in favor of the Progress Party founded in protest against tax legislation, the liberal Poul Hartling (* 1914, † 2000) 1973-75 was Prime Minister of a minority government; he followed 1975-82 Jørgensen as head of government in minority cabinets. In September 1982 Poul Schlüter (* 1920; Conservative Party) replaced him as Prime Minister (resignation in January 1993). Contrary to the positive vote of the Folketing (13.5.1992) on the Maastricht Treaty, the population rejected these contracts by 50.7% in a referendum on June 2, 1992. Only after a summit conference of the EC member states had granted Denmark special conditions in December 1992 (e.g. on questions of the planned monetary union and defense cooperation) did the Danes agree to the Maastricht Treaty with 56.8% in a second referendum on May 18, 1993.

Denmark History

Irish Literature

Irish Literature

Irish literature, Irish literature refers to literature in the Irish language. (Irish literature written in English is to be seen as part of English literature.)

Archaic (400–600) and early (600–1200) epochs

From the archaic epoch there are only a few hundred inscriptions in Ogham script. In early Ireland, despite political particularism, there was already a literary language without dialect differences. The aes dána (class of artists and scholars) occupied a privileged position in hierarchical society. The Filid (learned poets, first “seers”, partly successors of the Druids, Fili) orally preserved the tradition (Senchas) of the families and the tribes and wrote songs of praise and lamentation for their patrons and vilings against their enemies. The oldest datable works in Irish literature are Dallán Forgaill’s (* about 540, † 596) “Amra Choluimb Chille” (lament for the dead of St. Columban) and Colmán Moccu Beognaes († 611) prose work »Apgitir crábaid« (Alphabet of Piety).

The main works of early Irish literature are the sagas. Although only survived in manuscripts from the 12th and 13th centuries, they retain a language form that is centuries older and represent a pagan world that has not yet been touched by Christianity. The oldest manuscripts are “Lebor na h-uidre” (Book of the Dark Cow, around 1100) and the Book of Leinster (around 1150). The form of the heroic saga is the prose epic with insertions in bound or metric form.

While the heroic sagas in old Irish literature were organized according to themes (e.g. adventure, sieges, looting, courtship, kidnappings, banquets), today they are classified according to cycles. 1) Ulster cycle: Its main characters are the youthful hero Cú Chulainn, King Conchobor of Ulster and his hereditary enemies. The central narrative is »The Cow Robbery of Cooley« (Taín Bó Cuailnge). This cycle also includes, inter alia, the story of the tragic lover Deirdre with the Tristan and Isolde motif. The Ulster cycle shows particularly archaic elements, e.g. B. the fight with chariots, the head of the enemy as a trophy and the supernatural work of taboos (Gessa). 2) Mythological cycle: It depicts the battle of a legendary race of supernatural beings, the Tuatha Dé Danann and their king Dagdá, with a race of demons, the Fomorians. These include the stories “Tochmarc Étaíne” (The courtship for Étaín) and “Cath Maige Tuired” (The battle of Mag Tuired). 3) Royal cycle (also historical cycle): In it legends and stories are grouped around a historical or prehistoric king, e.g. B. “Cath Almain” (The Battle of All), “Buile Suibhne” (Suibhne’s madness). 4) Finn cycle (Finn): In his written fixation he belongs to the middle epoch of Irish literature; numerous versions of these myths were passed down orally up to the 19th century and form the most comprehensive folklore collection in the world.

The poetry of the early epoch has only survived in fragments. Particularly noteworthy is the mostly anonymous, sensitive nature poetry. In addition to the poems of the Filid, there were religious poems, e.g. B. “Félire” (calendar of saints, around 800) by Oengus Céile Dé, “Saltair na rann” (stanza psaltery, 10th century) and historical poems, e. B. “Fianna bátar i nEmain” (The warriors who were in Emain) by Cináed Ua Artacáin († 975). The oldest poems are written in a kind of rhythmic alliterative prose. End rhymes and syllable-counting meters appeared in the 8th century, influencing hymns written in Latin.

Furthermore, religious (especially saints’ lives and visions) and scientific prose emerged: medical and legal treatises such as “Senchas már” (Great Old Code), grammatical treatises with well-developed grammatical terminology, “Sanas Cormaic” (Cormac’s glossary), the “Dindshenchas”, a kind of national topography in which the names of well-known places are separated by one History or legend are interpreted, the “Lebor gabála” (Book of Conquests), which contains a speculative description of pre-Christian history of Ireland, as well as various genealogies and annals. Aphoristic literature was also widespread. Another genre was the “Immrama”, fantastic travel descriptions in verse and prose from the 8th or 9th century, including especially “Immram Brain maic Febail” (Seafaring Brans, son of Febal).

Middle Era (1200–1650)

The Anglo-Norman invasion (1171/72) marked the beginning of the end of Ireland’s political and cultural independence. A number of small principalities took the place of kingship.

With the kingship, the office of the filid died out. The poetry was now the responsibility of the bards originally subordinate to the filid. These were in the service of princes, on whose behalf they wrote songs of praise and songs of mockery (directed against their enemies). A special feature of Irish bard poetry is the extraordinarily complicated metric technique (Dán direach). Outstanding bards were Tadhg Dall Ó hUiginn (* 1550, † 1591) and several members of the Ó Dálaigh family, especially Muireadhach Albanach Ó Dálaigh (1st half of the 13th century). The Norman influence was immediately noticeable in the “Dánta grádha”, elegant love poems in the succession of the Provencal “amour courtois”.

Most of the prose literature of this period belongs to the Finn cycle, the fourth great Irish saga cycle. His fairytale-like fabrics interspersed with folkloric elements were passed down orally for centuries before they were written down. In addition to prose, the form of the ballad soon appeared, with verse forms that were considerably simplified compared to the bardic poetry. These ballads are seen as the beginning of popular Irish literature. The main work of the Finn cycle is the story “Acallam na senórach” (The conversation of the ancients; end of the 12th century). This cycle also includes the stories about Diarmaid and Gráinne.

Late era (1650-1850)

This section of Irish literature is marked by the suppression of the Irish language by the English. Expropriation and expulsion of the local nobility led to the extinction of the bard class. The previously standardized literary language was broken down into dialects. The English banned the printing of Irish-language books, and Irish literature only circulated in manuscripts, which prevented it from being widely circulated.

The most important lyric poet of this era was Dáibhidh Ó Bruadair (* around 1625, † 1698), who was partly still in the tradition of bard poetry. Instead of professional bard poetry, in the 17th and 18th centuries, Century, especially in the province of Munster (southern Ireland), one of farmers, artisans, teachers and others. worn folk poetry. Popular ballad verses (Amhráin) replaced the strict meters of bard poetry. The most important works of Munster poetry are the verses Aodhagán Ó Rathailles (* around 1670, † 1729), the aisling (vision poem) “Cúirt an mhéan-oíche” (Midnight Court) by Brian Merriman (* around 1749, † 1805) and “Caoineadh Airt Uí «(mortuary lament for Art O’Leary), mostly his widow Attributed to Eibhlín Dubh Ní Chonaill (* around 1743, † around 1800).

The prose works of the 17th century include historical and archeological collections of high historical value: “Annála rioghachta Éireann” (Annals of the Four Masters) by Mícheál Ó Cléirigh (* around 1575, † around 1643) and “Foras feasa ar Éirinn” (History Ireland) by Seathrún Céitinn (G. Keating).

Under pressure from the English (continued printing ban for Irish books) and the effects of the “Great Famine” (1845–49), all literary activity ceased in the course of the 19th century. On the other hand, the macaronic folk ballads, in which Irish and English were mixed up, were a makeshift and at the same time an expression of the increasing contact between the languages.

Modern era

With the establishment of the Gaelic League by D.  Hyde in 1893, a renewal of the Irish language and culture began. See politicsezine for Dublin of Ireland.

The Gaeltacht (area with Irish as a mother tongue) offered rich narrative material, but no literature in the narrower sense. Only Peter O’Leary (* 1839, † 1920; Cork-Irish), P. Pearse and Pádraic Ó Conaire (* 1882, † 1928; Connemara-Irish) combined the Gaeltacht heritage with a certain literary education.

The Irish Literary Theater, founded in 1899 by W. B. Yeats and Lady Gregory, performed the first Irish drama, Casadh an t-súgáin by Hyde, in 1901, which Lady Gregory translated into English as “The twisting of the rope”.

Although the Irish theater (with centers in Dublin and Galway as well as in the Gaeltacht of Donegal and Connemara) has produced a considerable number of authors and dramas since then, prose stands in the foreground with the short story as the dominant manifestation. Tomás Ó Criomhthain (* 1856, † 1937), Peig Sayers and Muiris O’Súileabháin (* 1904, † 1950) appeared with autobiographies, the brothers Séamus Ó Grianna (* 1889, † 1969) and Seosamh Mac Grianna (* 1901) with novels , † 1990).

A new phase began after 1939 with the work of the poet Máirtín Ó Direáin (* 1910, † 1988), who described the beauty and integrity of the native Aran Islands and at the same time criticized contemporary Irish society. and with M. Ó Cadhain, who became known through short stories and the satirical novel »Cré na cille« (1949; »Friedhofserde«). Among the poets of this time are Seán Ó Ríordáin (* 1917, † 1977), who v. a. turned to moral problems, and the poet Máire Mhac to tSaoí (* 1922)emerged, whose style denotes epigrammatic brevity and solidarity with tradition. Dónall Mac Amhlaigh (* 1926, † 1989) and Breandán Ó hEithir (* 1930, † 1990) became known as authors of satirical prose. A number of writers created works in Irish and English, including L. O’Flaherty, M. MacLiammóir, F. O’Brien, and B. Behan.

The latest poetry is characterized in form and subject by a strong opening to the outside world. Especially the group around the magazine “Innti” – including Gabriel Rosenstock (* 1949) and Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill (* 1952)  - but also Cathal Ó Searcaigh (* 1956) and the Belfast performance poet Gearóid Mac Lochlainn each deal with Asian spirituality, Feminism and folklore motifs, homosexuality or the experience of political conflicts. The newer prose authors include Alan Titley (* 1947), Liam Mac Coil (* 1948) and Micheál Ó Congghaile (* 1962).

Irish Literature

Germany History: from Ludovico IL Germanico to Federico II

Germany History: from Ludovico IL Germanico to Federico II

It was during the wars fought between Charlemagne’s successors that a German state emerged for the first time, autonomous and comprising in a unitary political organism all the Germanic populations east of the Rhine: the kingdom known as the Eastern Franks (later also regnum Theutonicum, or Saxonorum), recognized by the Treaty of Verdun (843) to Louis the German, grandson of Charlemagne, the year following that Strasbourg oath which, due to its bilingual redaction (Old French and Old High German), is proof of the existence of an autonomous and distinct German nationality within the Frankish world, albeit through the internal differences of customs, habits and in part also of language that were still found among the ancient populations. The German nation confirmed and consolidated in the following centuries its achieved unity with its own civilization which made its influence felt throughout Europe; the construction of a national state proved to be much more difficult. Under the reign of the last Carolingians the compactness of the political formation that had been created was severely tested both by the contrasts (and by the subdivisions) between Ludovico’s successors, and by the recurring aspirations for a reunification of Charlemagne’s Empire. Between the end of the century. Furthermore, during the reigns of Arnolfo of Carinthia and Ludovico il Fanciullo, continuous invasions by Hungarians, Slavs and Danes followed one another.

This situation of serious weakness of central power resulted in the strengthening of those ethnic-based particularisms that were linked to the traditions of the ancient peoples subdued by the Franks and determined the formation of political units governed by leaders who took the name of dukes, the national duchies. of Saxony, Franconia, Swabia and Bavaria, which was later joined by that of Lorraine, not corresponding to an ethnic group, but to the constituent territories of ancient Lotharingia, definitively incorporated into the German kingdom starting from 925. The extinction of the Carolingians of Germany (911) made the dukes – who had previously recognized at least nominally the authority of the sovereigns and their hereditary monarchy – arbitrators of the situation: they gave life to a national monarchy, in which the elective principle was tempered by the tendency to choose the sovereign at the interior of a single lineage (dynasties of Saxony, from 919 to 1024; of Franconia, from 1024 to 1125; of the Hohenstaufen, from 1138 to 1250). With Henry the Bird, first of the house of Saxony, and above all with his son, Otto I, the German state was strengthened thanks to the creation of a rudimentary administrative structure (palatine and ministerial counts), to the support of the bishops, appointed by the king and in charge of important political functions, and to that of the minor nobility, which was favored over the great feudal lords. A policy of founding frontier marches along the Elbe (of the Billunghi, from the North, from Lusatia, from Merseburg, from Meissen; and, further south, Orientale, of Carinthia, of Carniola) which not only ensured the defense of the German territory against the invaders (the Hungarians had been beaten at Riade in 933 and on the Lech in 955; the Slavs stopped near the Recknitz in 955), but also laid the foundations for expansion towards the East (Drang nach Osten) of the German settlement and for the Christianization of the Slavs, through the creation of a new series of bishoprics: Schleswig, Oldenburg, Brandenburg, Meissen, Prague, Olmütz, etc., subjected to the metropolitan see of Magdeburg and Mainz. However, even with Otto I emerged (or re-emerged, if we think of the Carolingian matrix of the German state) those imperial and universalist aspirations which then conditioned the action of the German sovereigns for centuries.

In 962, according to globalsciencellc, Ottone encircled the imperial crown in Rome and inaugurated a policy of constant intervention in the political events of the Italian peninsula, which would have required ever new commitment and energy from his successors. The Italian policy of Otto I was made with Otto II and with Otto III also Mediterranean and Eastern, even arousing the utopian program of a renovatio imperii; the ever closer relations with the Church and with the papacy involved the Empire in the exhausting struggle of investitures, from the middle of the century. XI to 1122 (Concordat of Worms); the same political program of Frederick I, centered on the restoration of state power, was conceived within the framework of a universal empire, with Rome as its capital and Italy as its center, and forced the Hohenstaufen to clash with the Italian communes and the papacy; and when in 1194 Henry VI inherited the crown of the Kingdom of Sicily, the ancient mirage of a dominium mundi flashed once again, extended to Byzantium and the Levant. This policy required enormous financial commitments for the recruitment of armies, forced the sovereigns to continually descend into Italy, to long and frequent absences from Germany; above all it prevented them from creating strong structures of government and from opposing the development of particularistic forces: the urban centers, which always claimed new autonomy, the nobility, which by now began to found its power, feudality, on territorial bases, which, far from constituting that hierarchical system of links between the emperor and the potentos hoped for by Barbarossa, it turned out to be the most serious element of disintegration. Thus, while in the West, and above all in France and England, the national monarchies – albeit through a bitter and long struggle – promoted the construction of an increasingly centralized and unitary state organism, ordering and regulating cities and local lordships, large principalities and autonomous provinces, in that slow process that leads to the formation of the modern state, the German monarchy wore out its energies and its authority in pursuit of the dream of a universal empire.

Germany History - from Ludovico IL Germanico to Federico II

Study in Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (11)

Study in Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (11)

Why did you even go abroad during your studies? – I hear this question a lot.

I had actually planned to spend a while abroad after graduating from high school, but at the age of 18 I just didn’t have the courage to take this step into practice. Now, a few years later, I still had great respect for living in another country for four months, as I had lived exclusively at home up until that point, but I wanted to take on this challenge.

I’m studying communication management and in the fifth semester there wasn’t much on the curriculum anyway. The timing seemed perfect! But where should the journey go? Since I made the decision to study abroad with reservations, I decided to definitely do the semester in Europe. Since I am studying communication management, it is very important to speak fluent English, but I was also very excited to learn another language.

The Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona appeared with their Pre-Established Program, which offers courses in both English and Spanish, perfect for my project. No sooner said than done: I inquired, applied through MicroEDU and received an offer for a place at university. It quickly became clear: From September 2016 I will be going to Spain for just under 4 months !

The apartment search

First of all, it should be said that looking for an apartment in Barcelona is anything but easy. A fellow student of mine had also decided to do a semester abroad at the UAB and so we looked for an apartment together. However, perplexity quickly spread, as many forums and housing agencies were either super overpriced or anything but serious. Often we were advised to fly over there one or two weeks before the start of studies and look for an apartment on site, but without any knowledge of Spanish we were rather skeptical. Ultimately, we joined all kinds of Facebook groups and, with a lot of luck, were able to temporarily rent an apartment from a German couple. Five minutes’ walk to the nearest metro station and 10 minutes to the beach – it couldn’t be more perfect!

Here we go

On 08/30/2016 the time had come. I made my way to the airport full of anticipation, but also full of concerns. We arrived in Barcelona late in the evening and drove to Placa Catalunya, where we were picked up by our landlady. The first impressions were just overwhelming. When I finally lay in bed in the evening, however, I felt a strange feeling again. I fell asleep wondering whether that was the right decision. This feeling didn’t last long, however. The city was just overwhelming and I quickly got to know new people at university. I was lucky that my courses were well laid out and so I only had to go to university on Mondays and Wednesdays. Otherwise I had a lot of free time to discover the city.

Life in Spain is very different than in Germany and it took some getting used to for me at first. At home I’ve never had a late dinner – but in Spain you start at 8 p.m. at the earliest. Well, I wanted to get to know a different culture and I couldn’t change it anyway, as most of the kitchens had closed beforehand. But you got used to it really quickly.

The time in Spain was like vacation. The weather was amazing, even in December there were days when I could still lie on the beach at 20 degrees. It was just fantastic. In general, we spent a large part of our day on the beach. When the sun was gone, we went to the Spanish streets to eat tapas and drink sangria. Read more student reviews on Act-test-centers.

I had the feeling that even the Spaniards were in a permanent holiday mood in their beautiful city. For routes that you drive by car in Germany, you simply put on your sunglasses in Barcelona and walked. Right from the start I noticed that there is so much that is so amazing to discover in this city and that the time of just under four months will never be enough. In addition, the Spaniards always have something to celebrate – it feels like a “fiesta” takes place every other day and the whole city is in a lively atmosphere.

The Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona is just impressive as it is in the old St. Pau Hospital. The lectures were great fun and I met people from all over the world. In general, you couldn’t compare the course with the German one. The way of learning was completely different. More playful and more academic, but still effective.

Life in Barcelona is comparable in price to Germany. Housing prices are the same as in major German cities and leisure activities are also comparably expensive. The metro card cost me about 100 € for the entire time, which was fine. Eating out and, above all, fresh purchases were even significantly cheaper than in Germany, but you still didn’t save because you eat out more often in Spain than in Germany.

My personal highlights definitely included the sunsets on the Bunkers del Carmel, the many small bars and cafes, where one was sweeter and more beautiful than the other, the fountains on Placa Espanya, the many weekend trips to different Spanish cities, the evenings, where I got to know the Korean culture because the Koreans cooked for us and much, much more.


All in all, I can say it was the best time of my life and all concerns were in vain. In the four months I got to know and love an amazing city and incredibly lovely people. I really enjoyed Spanish life and culture ! Everything is much more relaxed and it was appreciated for trying to speak Spanish. Personally, I grew a lot during this time, which simply passed far too quickly. One thing is certain: Barcelona – you will see me again!

Study in Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona 11

Poland Overview

Poland Overview

Poland, officially Polish Rzeczpospolita Polska [ ʒ εt ʃ p ɔ s p ɔ lita -], German Republic of Poland, State in Central Eastern Europe (2018) 38.0 million residents; The capital is Warsaw.

National symbols

The national flag comes from the Duchy of Warsaw (1772) and was legally established on November 11, 1918 for the newly established Republic of Poland. The flag is divided into two equal stripes of white over red.

The coat of arms can be traced back to the 13th century. It shows a gold armored and crowned white eagle on a red shield. On December 29, 1989 it was decided that the crown removed under communist rule would be added to the heraldic animal again.

National holidays: Since 1990 (as in 1918–39), May 3rd commemorates the first constitution of 1791. November 11th, Independence Day, commemorates the regaining of independence in 1918.


Since the democratic transformation of Poland and the self-dissolution of the communist Polish United Workers’ Party (PZPR), which had supported the state until then, in January 1990, a broad spectrum of political parties, groups and alliances has emerged. Important parties are the Civic Platform (PO; founded 2001, conservative-liberal), the Law and Justice party (PiS; founded 2001, conservative-national), the Kukiz’15 party (K; founded 2015, populist), the Modern Party (N; founded in 2015, economically liberal), the Polish People’s and Peasants’ Party (PSL; founded in 1990 from predecessor organizations), the Alliance of the Democratic Left (SLD; emerged in 1999 as a party from the movement of the same name, founded in 1991, which comprised almost 30 left-wing groups and above all by the successor organization of the PZPR, the Social Democracy of the Republic of Poland [SdRP], which existed until 1999). The Alliance of the Democratic Left joined forces with other groups on the United Left (ZL) for the 2015 parliamentary elections. – The German minority, which has no party of its own nationwide, relies on ethnic group organizations and is exempt from the electoral threshold.


In the early 1990s around three quarters of the workers were union members, now only around 10% are unionized. In addition to the NSZZ Solidarność (Independent Self-Governing Trade Union Solidarity; founded in 1980), the OPZZ (All-Poland Trade Union Alliance; founded in 1984) and Forum FZZ (founded in 2002) there are numerous small local individual trade unions.


The total strength of the professional army (2010 abolition of compulsory military service) is around 100,000 men. The army (48,200 soldiers) is divided into two army corps with three mechanized infantry divisions, one armored division, two artillery, engineer and airmobile brigades, three reconnaissance regiments, two army aviation regiments, one engineer regiment and one regiment for anti-C weapons. The Air Force has 16,600 and the Navy 7,700. Around 3,000 soldiers belong to the special forces, 14,300 paramilitary units.


At the regional level, there have been 16 voivodeships since the administrative reform that came into force in 1999, headed by the voivode appointed by the head of government. In October 1998, regional parliaments (with their own budget law) were elected for the first time for the voivodships to shape independent local politics; its executive body is the management with a marshal. On the second regional level, there are 380 districts (powiaty), the local political body of which is the district council. The local level of municipal self-government is represented by 2,478 municipalities.

Administrative division in Poland

Administrative structure (December 31, 2018)
Voivodeship Area (in km 2) Population (in 1,000) Residents (per km 2) capital city
Warmia-Masuria 24 173 1,429.0 59 Olsztyn
Greater Poland 29 827 3,494.0 116 Poznan
Holy Cross 11 711 1,241.5 106 Kielce
Lesser Poland 15 183 3,400.6 224 Krakow (Kraków)
Kuyavian Pomeranian 17 971 2,077.8 116 Bydgoszcz 1), Toruń 2)
Lebus 13,988 1,014.5 73 Gorzów Wielkopolski 1), Zielona Góra 2)
Lodz 18 219 2,466.3 135 Lodz (Łódź)
Lublin 25 122 2,117.6 84 Lublin
Mazovia 35 558 5,403.4 152 Warsaw
Lower Silesia 19 947 2,901.2 145 Wroclaw (Wroclaw)
Opole 9 412 986.5 105 Opole
Podlaskie 20 187 1,181.5 59 Białystok
Pomerania 18 322 2,333.5 127 Gdańsk
Silesia 12 333 4,533.6 368 Katowice
Subcarpathian 17 846 2 129.0 119 Rzeszów
West Pomerania 22 897 1,701.0 74 Szczecin
1) Seat of the voivod.2) Seat of the Parliament (Sejmik) of the Voivodeship.


In 2017, Poland implemented an educational reform. Compulsory schooling was reduced by one year. It lasts from 8 to 16 years of age. According to topschoolsintheusa, the eight-year primary school follows the well-developed, non-compulsory elementary area. Afterwards, either the four-year lyceum (general higher education entrance qualification), the five-year technical college (technical college) or the three-year vocational school can be attended. Graduates of the vocational school have the opportunity to acquire the higher education entrance qualification after completing the two-year supplementary lyceum. The grammar schools introduced in 1999, which had to be attended after a six-year primary school, were abolished in 2017. This means that the school system is only two-tiered.

In the higher education sector there are 19 universities as well as numerous other public, church and private academies and higher education institutions. The oldest universities are the Jagiellonian University in Krakow (founded in 1364) and the Universities of Wroclaw (founded in 1702, re-established as a Polish university in 1945) and Warsaw (1818).


The media landscape is diverse and reporting is free. Foreign media groups have a strong presence, including Axel Springer SE, Bauer Media Group and Verlagsgruppe Passau (regional newspapers).

Press: Among the 45 daily newspapers with the highest circulation, in addition to various free papers, are the tabloids »Fakt« (founded in 2003) and »Super Express« (founded in 1991) as well as the »Gazeta Wyborcza« (founded in 1989), which emerged from the Solidarność trade union movement, the conservative » Rzeczpospolita “(founded in 1982), the business newspaper” Dziennik-Gazeta Prawna “(founded in 2002) and the Warsaw newspaper” Życie Warszawy “. News magazines are “Newsweek Polska” (founded in 2001), “Polityka” (founded in 1957), and “Wprost” (founded in 1982).

News agencies: Polska Agencja Prasowa (PAP), Katolicka Agencja Informacyjna (KAI, founded in 1992).

Broadcasting: Public broadcasting consists of Telewizja Polska (TVP) and Polskie Radio (PR). TVP broadcasts three full programs nationwide and, in addition to several special interest channels, also operates »TV Polonia« for Poland abroad; »TVP Regionalna« is the cover for 16 regional studios. The largest private television stations are »Polsat TV«, »TVN« (with news channel »TVN 24«) and the Catholic »TV Puls«. Pay TV is very important. Polskie Radio includes four national radio stations, 17 regional companies and “Polskie Radio dla Zagraniczy” (Polish radio for foreign countries). The most popular private radio stations are “Radio Muzyka Fakty” (RMF FM) and “Radio Zet” as well as the Catholic “Radio Maryja”.

Poland Overview

Study in Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (10)

Study in Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (10)

My time at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (Spring 2011)

To make it easier, I would best describe my semester abroad in chronological order:

As a business administration graduate student, I started looking for a program that would fit perfectly into my course of study in terms of time and would also give me the opportunity to improve another language (besides English). I took a practical semester time off at the university and began an internship in July 2010, which I completed by the end of the year. After extensive research on the Internet and the choice of language to be Spanish (as I had already learned Spanish at school for 3 years), the Pre-Established Study Abroad Program offered me the best possible conditions. In terms of time, it also fit perfectly into my semester planning, as I could start right after the internship and was back at my home university in the second week of the new semester. Read more student reviews on Andyeducation.

August / September 2010 – application (preparation) and choice of subjects

Since I wanted to submit my application on time, I have already requested all the necessary documents after MicroEDUs had sent me all the relevant forms and documents. I was able to send all the documents for the “check” to Münster in advance and was also informed about the expected start of the application. Since I had read beforehand that the places in this program are in great demand, I submitted my documents right at the start of the application and had no further problems.

I chose my subjects according to my main interests, as I couldn’t expect any credits. In retrospect, I can especially recommend the “International Marketing” course and of course the Spanish language course. I had 4 subjects including the language course and felt very well occupied and still had time to enjoy Barcelona to the fullest.

December 2010 – looking for an apartment

Luckily, shortly before it started, I had already been promised an apartment through a good friend. Therefore, unfortunately, I cannot tell you how you can find a good place to stay in Barcelona quickly and easily. During the time I lived in Barcelona in the “El Born” district. This was a direct hit for me in every respect, as it is only a few minutes’ walk to the beach, the Ramblas and only a few stops by underground to the two university buildings of the program. Therefore, I would recommend this district without hesitation and can say that there is a lot to discover and experience in addition to many small bars, restaurants and cafes.

From my friends there, I can say that Eixample is also a recommendable residential area. Central, well located for the university and also with a wide range of options for going out.

The standard of the apartments was on average below that of the German, the rooms were smaller, but the whole city had a different flair. Many old buildings, small alleys and the people make Barcelona a cozy, modern and diverse metropolis.

January 2010 – Uni, life, enjoyment

About the university:
The Eixample campus is centrally located and modern. The opposite is the Sant Pau campus, which is also a real insider tip for tourists thanks to its architecture and history. I had fans in both places, which means a bit of “pendulum”, but it is quite bearable.
I particularly liked that the courses were small, the proportion of project work and group work in the semester was large and the exams were fair at the end. So you shouldn’t have any problems passing courses there. Instruction is required in almost every course, but is not 100% checked and also allows some absenteeism. AND: Friday is really a day off there! The lecturers are friendly, personal and committed to the matter. Above all, they also know that in the semester abroad you want to experience so much more besides university and are therefore not that strict.

To the city:
party, beach, culture, history and big city feeling – Barcelona unites all of this. The range of parties and nightlife options is almost endless and offers something new every day. For sunny days, a visit to the beach is a good idea, where you can quickly forget that you live in a big city. Museums and various festivals as well as a large number of excursion possibilities do not make a Sunday boring. It is a good idea to plan an excursion destination in or around Barcelona for each week in order to get to know the city and the country in peace and with good preparation.

About life: In
terms of quality of life, the Spanish food deserves a special mention! The many small restaurants and bars offer tapas as well as many other inexpensive surprises and delights! Just go to one of the small restaurants in the side streets and try it out! In addition to the food, the Spanish cava is also a must-have that I really miss in Germany. In the supermarket and in larger department store chains there is everything your heart desires. You should definitely buy fruit and vegetables at Boqueria! The prices are comparable to those here in Germany and of course differ in a few cases due to availability. All in all, apart from the rent, life there was not particularly more expensive than in Germany.

For living:
Prices for a room (6-10 m²) are, in my experience, between 300 and 500 €. In any case, it is important to note the proximity to the subway, the distance to the university and, in winter, the availability of heating! This is not a matter of course for many landlords. Otherwise it may well be that you get or move into an apartment without a rental agreement.

About the language:
First of all: NO, the Catalans also speak Spanish and are friendly when you are! In my time I never had any problems communicating and after a while you quickly learn to use “everyday sentences”. The daily language course is really helpful and has given me a solid language base. The language in the university is English and for a few subjects and advanced students also Spanish. However, 90% of the courses are American, which is why we speak English in class or in group work.

April 2011 – conclusion

I am very happy with my choice and still benefit from the impressions and experiences in these almost 4 months. The only point of criticism that you should bear in mind when making your choice is that no Spanish students are admitted to this program. This means that you are only among “internationals” and that you will mostly speak English. I benefited from both and during this time I was able to improve my English in addition to Spanish. However, it is more difficult to get to know locals or Spaniards if you don’t have them at university.

Study in Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona 10

Study in Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (9)

Study in Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (9)

I completed my semester abroad as part of my dual business administration degree (focus on trade) at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. In Germany, this winter semester (January-March) corresponded to my third theory semester, which in retrospect was not that cheap, as I have to rewrite many exams at home after my return. Nevertheless, I would recommend the semester abroad in Barcelona to anyone who is interested in international (mostly US-American) encounters and still doesn’t want to get a culture shock.

The application process

The application process was very easy, I didn’t really have to clarify a lot in advance. At my home university in Heidenheim I used the International Office to find out which partner universities are offered and finally I decided on the UAB. The decisive factor here was the duration: a semester only lasts three and a half months – and not a full six months as at other universities (which would not have been an option for my training company). Unfortunately, the UAB is not the cheapest choice in terms of price: you pay around 600-1000 euros per module that you occupy.

When the decision was made, I worked with the International Office to collect the necessary registration forms (transcript of records, copy of ID and a few other small items). The contact to MicroEDU was then established via the International Office and I only had to wait until their contact person got in touch with me by email.

MicroEDU then guided me through the further registration process and sent the documents to the university in Barcelona. I have to mention here: the agency’s employees (especially Ms. Ezerskyte) are extremely friendly and always remain polite and helpful, no matter how frequently you ask ! Thanks a lot for this!

That’s about it, MicroEDU informed me that I was accepted (of course: if you pay the deposit of a few hundred euros on time, you will probably not just be refused…) and I was able to book my outward flight for January 4th. The semester started on January 7th, so I had a few stress-free days to look for accommodation from my hotel.

The accommodation

I looked for my accommodation on site – and without any knowledge of Spanish! I definitely want to encourage you to do the same! If you book a room in advance without having viewed it, there is a good chance that you will be nastily surprised when you arrive…

For me it was no stress at all to find a small room in a four-person shared apartment near the Sagrada Familia. I registered with idealista on the first day and looked for offers there. Already on the following day there were two appointments for viewing and to be honest? You can also communicate with your hands and feet if the other person doesn’t speak good English and you don’t speak Spanish yourself.

I definitely recommend the Eixample districts (here in particular near the Sagrada Familia or Sant Antoni) and Gracia. I would personally advise against Poble Sec and Gotico, but that only depends on my experience.

The University

I won’t tell you anything new – anyone who has read through a few testimonials from the university will quickly find that this semester abroad consists of everything but skipping courses, studying with local students and just lazing around. If you want to get good German grades here (and thanks to the Spanish grading system they are really hard to achieve), you have to move to every lecture and sit on your butt even after “school” (yes, you study in small groups) and do homeworks, assignments or book readings. Those who stick with it as in the dual study course should, however, be able to keep their grades in Germany (at least to some extent).

What was also a bit disappointing: The UAB emphasizes the high degree of international students. Contrary to what I expected, I found myself in all four courses with 95% students from the USA. Basically, of course, that didn’t bother me, I also formed a close friendship with two girls from New York. But unfortunately the semester abroad is only half as “multicultural” as one had hoped it would…

My courses taken

I took four courses: International Marketing Strategies, International Finance, International Economics and Strategic Behavior in Business and Economics.

International Marketing

I had International Marketing Strategies at Dr. Vera Butkouskaya and that was my absolute favorite module ! Vera was always in a good mood and with her funny manner she was super personable for all students! She also knew that we would like to enjoy our semester abroad instead of just looking at things and therefore hardly gave us any homework or assignments. The material itself was also very interesting, albeit a bit dry from time to time.

International Finance

International finance was a tough counterpart to marketing: I was mostly in the course with finance majors and of course they also had previous knowledge. Unfortunately, I didn’t and so the lessons with Myriam went a bit too fast for me and I had to learn a lot. However, anyone who enjoys financial topics is in good hands here. The exams were also very fair, so that even a beginner could achieve good grades with a learning curve.

International Economics

International economics was similarly difficult. David Castell was convinced that each of his international students should read a book of at least 200 pages during that time and also buy the “ABSOLUTELY BASIC” book to accompany the lectures so that you are at home (because you are only in Barcelona to study ) can read on and deepen his Econ knowledge independently… the expectations took a lot of getting used to and that should have been the reason why I did by far the worst in this subject out of all four modules.

Strategic Behavior

Strategic behavior at Ivanna Ferdinandova was… unhappy. The lecture was on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 9 am, which implies tired students. The fact that the transmission of the content was THAT cumbersome didn’t make the whole thing any better. My neighbor at the bank regularly fell asleep and the other students also preferred to go to the next European travel destinations with their MacBooks rather than listening to Ivanna’s words. The material – Decision Theory and Game Theory – was very interesting! However, you only noticed this when you yourself have dealt with the homeworks or the final presentation yourself at home.

Language course

I would definitely not recommend a UAB Spanish course as it is way too expensive! Right around the corner from the campus in Eixample there is a language school – LinguaSchools – which offers the same number of courses per week (twice a week from 7 am to 9 pm) and is significantly cheaper. Instead of 1000 euros like the UAB, this language school only charges around 300 euros and learning success is also guaranteed if you are willing to deal with the new language! It made it easy for me to learn the basics of Spanish. Read more student reviews on Anycountyprivateschools.

Please, please don’t think I want to talk you through the semester in Barcelona because I almost only report negative things here! Barcelona itself is a beautiful city and there is so much to experience over the weekend (especially because Fridays are always free!)! The city offers much more than just the typical tourist attractions!


The three and a half months in Barcelona passed far too quickly! Every single weekend is worth gold and you shouldn’t waste any of it in a bad mood at home! I almost never saw clouds or even rain in my winter semester, which made it all the easier to leave the apartment and have fun on the streets of Barcelona!

You can really get home quickly by public transport at any time of the day or night, which was a great benefit for me as a country man. In addition, you have the beach, beautiful parks and mountains all rolled into one: what more could you want? I spent differently every weekend and got infected by the American wanderlust. From El Prat Airport in Barcelona we went to three different destinations: Seville, Lisbon and ( my absolute highlight! ) Ibiza.

I can only recommend you to explore the surrounding area and look out for cheap deals on flights, because it’s worth it! Ibiza in particular is amazing out of season! All the clubs were closed and there was almost no sign of tourists. The four of us rented a car for a weekend and then we are completely around the island – always following the sun towards hidden beaches and the perfect spots for the sunset over the sea.

My final message to you: don’t be afraid to fly to Barcelona for a semester abroad! The advantages clearly outweigh the disadvantages (for example the high costs), I really enjoyed this time in Spain and I will definitely come back there again!

Study in Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona 9

Germany Population and Religion

Germany Population and Religion


Germany is the most populous state within the European Union. The number of residents shows a slightly increasing tendency due to migration gains. Nevertheless, according to projections, it will decrease continuously from around 2030, mainly due to the low birth rate (2019: 1.54). The rising number of births (from 2012) contrasts with a rapidly growing number of deaths, so that the gap between those born and those who died is widening. Demographic change is particularly evident in increasing aging (overaging) and a decline in the labor force. The number will probably be lower than the number of people over 65 by 2030.

Population development in Germany

year total (million) 1) Territory – old federal states Territory – new federal states and East Berlin
1939 59.7 43.0 16.7
1947 65.9 2) 45.4 20.5 3)
1950 68.4 50.0 18.4
1956 70.7 53.0 17.7
1960 72.7 55.4 17.2
1965 75.6 58.6 17.0
1970 77.7 60.7 17.1
1975 78.7 61.8 16.8
1980 78.3 61.5 16.7
1985 77.6 61.0 16.6
1990 79.4 63.3 16.1
1995 81.7 66.2 15.5
2000 82.2 67.1 15.1
2005 82.4 65.7 16.7 3)
2010 82.1 65.7 16.4 3)
2014 80.8 64.8 15.9 3)
2019 83.2 67.0 16.2 3)
1) According to the territorial status of 1971.2) Of these 1.13 million displaced persons, disarmed members of the armed forces and civil internees.

3) Including all of Berlin.

Births and deaths in Germany

Per 1,000 residents
year Live born Died
1946 14.3 15.5
1950 16.3 10.9
1955 15.8 11.3
1960 17.3 12.0
1965 17.5 12.0
1970 13.5 12.6
1975 9.9 12.6
1980 11.0 12.1
1985 10.5 12.0
1990 11.4 11.6
1995 9.4 10.8
2000 9.3 10.2
2005 8.3 10.1
2010 8.3 10.5
2014 8.8 10.7
2019 9.4 11.3

Development: Until 1939, almost exclusively Germans lived in Germany; the strongest minority were Poles. After the Second World War, the continuous growth of the population in the western federal states was mainly due to an influx of people from outside, in addition to an initial surplus of births. By 1953, around 10.6 million displaced persons and refugees had come from the former German eastern regions and states of east-central and south-eastern Europe. Up until 1961, immigration from the GDR played a major role in the growth in the West. Since the 1960s, the cyclical immigration of foreign workers (“guest workers”) has played the greatest role. As of 1972 there was a surplus of deaths.

In the area of ​​the GDR, the population initially increased after the end of the war as a result of the influx of refugees and resettlement from the east, but then decreased until the second half of the 1970s. The strong emigration of workers to the Federal Republic of Germany until 1961 (construction of the Berlin Wall) and a high surplus of women as a result of the war contributed to this. A total of almost 900,000 people went to West Germany and West Berlin in 1961–88. After the democratic change in 1989/90 (German unity) once again a large number of residents, especially those of working age, left the eastern German parts of the country. 1991-2018 a total of 3.8 million people migrated from East to West Germany, in the opposite direction there were 2.5 million removals. The migration balance has been almost balanced since 2014, after the East German migration losses had already declined since 2001.

Immigration from abroad fell from a peak in 1992 (1.5 million people); In 2008, Germany recorded a loss of migration for the first time since 1984. From 2010, however, the number of immigrants again exceeded that of emigrants. A total of around 11.2 million people with foreign citizenship were living in Germany at the end of 2019. More than twice as many residents had a migration background. Almost 70% of the foreigners came from European countries, 43% from EU countries, primarily Poland, Romania and Italy. At around 13%, the highest proportion of foreigners was made up of Turkish citizens. The number of German repatriates fell significantly in the 1990s (Russian Germans). Belong to the national minorities Sinti and Roma, Danes in southern Schleswig, Lusatian Sorbs and Frisians.

Distribution: The average population density of 233 residents per km 2 in 2019 was almost twice as high as the average in the European Union. The population distribution is quite different, mainly due to the continued growth of the economic and urban agglomerations for around 100 years. The largest conurbation is the Ruhr area. Other areas of population concentration are the Rhine-Neckar area, the Rhine-Main area, the Saarland, Hanover, Munich and Nuremberg / Fürth. In the heavily industrialized south of the East German federal states, three densely populated areas stand out: Halle – Leipzig, Chemnitz – Zwickau and the Dresden area. Overall, the East German settlement structure is more rural than the West German one.

After the Second World War, cities in particular experienced above-average growth, so that a noticeable lack of living space became apparent, even if many families with children in particular migrated to the outskirts (suburbanization). One third of the population lives in each of the 81 large cities (100,000 residents and more) and in municipalities between 10,000 and 50,000 residents.

The biggest cities in Germany

Residents (December 31, 2019)
Berlin 3 669 500
Hamburg 1,847,300
Munich 1 484 200
Cologne 1,087,900
Frankfurt am Main 763 400
Stuttgart 635 900
Dusseldorf 621 900
Leipzig 593 100
Dortmund 588 300
meal 582 800
Bremen 567 600
Dresden 556 800


The Basic Law (Articles 4 and 140) obliges the state to tolerance, neutrality and parity towards all religions and religious societies and guarantees freedom of belief, conscience and belief, subject to general state laws. The Catholic Church and the member churches of the Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD) have the status of a corporation under public law, as do most of the free churches. The Catholic Church (2019) has around 22.6 million members, the EKD member churches 20.7 million. The numbers of registered members of both denominational groups are precisely recorded at regular intervals; they are steadily falling. More than half of the population in Germany belongs to Christian denominations, including groups that refer to Christian-Biblical traditions, such as the New Apostolic Church and Jehovah’s Witnesses.

According to mysteryaround, the largest non-Christian religious community is Islam with an estimated 5 million members. The majority of the Sunni Muslims are of Turkish origin. Hundreds of thousands of Muslims have organized themselves in mosque associations or other Islamic associations. The largest local Islamic community are the Muslims in Berlin (around 250,000–300,000 believers).

The Jewish religious communities have a total of almost 95,000 members (2019); Berlin, Munich, Frankfurt am Main and Düsseldorf have the largest individual Jewish communities. The umbrella organization of Jewish communities and associations is the Central Council of Jews in Germany.

Under the umbrella of the German Buddhist Union – Buddhist Religious Community (DBU; founded in 1955) 62 member communities came together (2019). It is estimated that around 0.3% of the population actively follow Buddhism. The assumed total number of Hindus living in Germany is around 0.1% of the population. One of the largest Hindu temples in Europe is located in Hamm.

Germany Population and Religion

Study in Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (8)

Study in Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (8)

1. Application process

The application process for Barcelona is very simple. After I was sure that I wanted to go to Barcelona, ​​I applied through the free agency “ MicroEDU ”. The semester abroad started on September 3rd and I applied in March, right at the beginning of the application phase. I applied for the “Pre-established study abroad program”, in which almost all courses are in English and the university campus is right in the center of Barcelona.

All I had to do to apply was submit the following documents:

  • List of selected courses
  • Copy of the certificate of enrollment
  • Copy of the transcript of records
  • Copy of an identification document
  • Passport photo
  • English test (the DAAD test is sufficient)

The agency then sends the complete application to Barcelona and you don’t have to worry about anything.

After you have received an acceptance you have to pay 500 €. This should be done quickly, as the students who pay first also get into their desired courses. This was not a problem for me and I was able to take the courses I wanted. Depending on the course chosen, the remaining tuition fees are due approximately 4 weeks before the start of the semester.

At the beginning of the semester there is the so-called “add-and-drop period”, where you can try to swap places in courses with other students. I wouldn’t rely on that, however.

2. Description of the city and region

Barcelona is located in the north-eastern part of Spain and directly on the Mediterranean Sea. It is the capital of the region of Catalonia and around 1.6 million people live within the urban area. In my opinion, Barcelona is one of the most beautiful cities around. It offers endless possibilities for exploring and of course the beach is a huge plus. I found the people to be consistently open-minded. Everyone was helpful, open and friendly.

The German weather cannot be compared with the Spanish weather. In my 4 months I only had 4 rainy days and never had clouds in the sky. Even in mid-November we could still lie on the beach in bikinis. So you have a completely different and more positive outlook on life in Barcelona.

3. Finding accommodation

Finding an apartment in Barcelona has turned out to be very easy, living rather complicated. There are countless pages on the Internet and also many groups on Facebook where you can search for apartments / shared flats. These include, for example, idealista,, wg-sucht and pisocompartido. I checked the Internet beforehand and made viewing appointments for the first few days.

First of all, I have to say that the Spanish standard does not correspond to the German and I was a bit shocked at first. After a few visits, I found a small room in a shared apartment near the Sagrada Familia with 2 South Americans and an Indian and moved into it on the same day. There are an infinite number of free rooms in Barcelona and you can find a free room very quickly. In retrospect, I would prefer to live in the old town and I also found the “Raval” district, which was considered a bit dangerous, to be very beautiful.

In general, when looking for an apartment, I would also recommend paying attention to whether there is a functioning heating system and how noisy it is in the room. In Barcelona, ​​garbage collectors etc. always come at night and it can be very noisy and in winter without heating it can also be cold. Many of my friends and I had problems in the rooms / apartments, but many also felt very comfortable.

In the end I didn’t get along with my landlords and I moved for December without further ado. I would recommend having everything confirmed in writing. To insist on rent as well as deposit and, if necessary, on a written rental agreement.

4. Description of the university / faculty

The Autonomous University of Barcelona is divided into several locations.

The main campus is about 30 km from Barcelona. There are 2 buildings in the city where the courses of the “Pre-established” program take place. Only foreign students take part in this program, not Spaniards. Generally there are around 70% Americans, a lot of Brazilians, Dutch, Germans etc. The first campus is called “Sant Pau” and is a really nice building in Barcelona that also has a library.

The second campus, “Eixample” is located right in the city center and is rather simple, smaller and modern. My courses all took place on this campus. The classrooms are comparable to German classrooms in schools. There are around 20/25 students per course and it’s all very personal. A lecture lasts 1:40 hours and the first lesson begins at 9 a.m. There is a 20 minute break between each hour and a 1 hour break at noon. The last lecture lasts until 7:25 p.m.

5. Integration in the course of studies (BA)

The “Pre-established” program offers a large number of courses for foreign students. 6 credits are recognized per course. The semester at the UAB can only be taken in September, as the 1st semester always starts in January. Overall, the integration turned out to be very easy.

6. Description of the courses taken

The courses at UAB are very similar to those at school. Attendance is compulsory and you should collaborate orally. Unlike in Germany, there were not only exams at the end of the semester, but the grades were made up of many individual assessments. Most subjects have a final and a midterm exam, as well as many case studies and presentations.

Overall, it is “more stressful” during your studies than in Germany because you have to work continuously. On the other hand, it is significantly less at the end of the semester. A course takes place on Mondays and Wednesdays or Tuesdays and Thursdays. Friday is free and therefore everything is very easy to do.

I took 4 courses on site:

a) Doing business in emerging markets

In this course we dealt with economically emerging countries and markets. The course consisted of two parts. At the beginning of the semester we were assigned a partner and a country and had to present news from this country on a weekly basis. In addition to theory, we did a case study every week and also handed it in. After the midterm, each team had to give a presentation on the entry of a Spanish company into our emerging country.

There was both a midterm and a final exam in this course. The lecturer was very nice and it was very important that people not learn by heart but understand. I liked the course very much.

b) Cross-Cultural Management

This course was my favorite course. We discussed different cultural dimensions and due to the many nationalities in the class it was never boring and always interesting. We had to give and submit an individual presentation, a group presentation including a term paper, and at the end we wrote an exam.

c) Managerial Skills for International Business

I also really enjoyed this course. The lecturer was really very good and, in addition to theory, we also did a lot of role plays to consolidate the theory. It was mainly about “everyday” situations in professional life and how best to cope with them. This included, for example, time management and leadership skills. The lecturer varied between many media, so it was always interesting. There was a midterm and a final term.

d) International Marketing Strategies

I am also very satisfied with this course choice. It was the most time-consuming course for me with MicroEDUM. In addition to theories, we worked on a lot of case studies and applied marketing strategies. Within the course we had to write a midterm and a final exam. In addition, we worked out a term paper in groups and each had to give two presentations. Every week we were introduced to a new company and its strategy, about which we had to answer and submit questions.

Overall, I really enjoyed all of the courses. There is a clear difference when the teacher knows all students by name. In addition, it is a change that both attendance and participation are included in the final grade. It was a very personal atmosphere and I really took away a lot. I liked the fact that it was mostly less theoretical than in Germany. I can definitely recommend these courses and especially as a European (mostly hardworking and punctual in contrast to many Americans) it is really easy to get a good grade.

7. Statement of costs and financing options

Since the UAB is not a partner university of our university, I had to pay the tuition fees myself. I took 4 courses (24 ECTS) on site and paid € 2605.

I paid 370 € for the rent in the first 3 months and another 200 € for December because I wasn’t there for the whole month. I would definitely recommend asking the landlord whether it is possible to reduce the rent if you are no longer on site for a full month. Many landlords are very accommodating. Here I would also give the tip to have this confirmed in writing.

The public transport network in Barcelona is very well developed. Under 25s can buy a 3-month ticket for € 105, which I would definitely recommend. With this you can use the metro, the bus, the night bus and the tram.

I spent around € 400 a month on living, eating and drinking. I have to say that we went to dinner very often, tried a lot, went to many museums and exhibitions. If you cook yourself a lot, it is probably a lot cheaper.

I was in Barcelona most of the time and only visited a friend over the weekend in Valencia once. So I spent very little on trips.

For trips I can recommend everyone to use the long-distance bus, which, like in Germany, are very cheap.

Statement of costs

  • 4 courses: € 2605
  • Rent for 4 months: 1310 €
  • 3-month ticket: € 105
  • 1-month ticket: € 50
  • Living / eating / drinking: 400 € / month
  • Trips: 60 €
  • Security deposit: € 370
  • Flights: € 150
  • Spanish teacher: 400 €
  • Total: 6650 € (including deposit)

If you want to apply for BAföG abroad, you should do so as early as possible.

8. Professional and personal experience

I think Barcelona has brought me a lot, both professionally and personally.

The lessons were not predominantly theoretical, as in most German universities, but theories were often presented on the basis of cases, exercises, presentations or films and then analyzed. This made it possible to understand a lot of the material during the semester and you had to study less for exams. Read more student reviews on Educationvv.

Personally, Barcelona also brought me a lot. For me it was the first time to “stand on my own two feet” and live alone. I have become much more independent and open.

9. Tips for those interested

There is so much to see and discover in Barcelona. I would especially recommend the following places / restaurants:

  • Bunkers del Carmel (a must-do !!)
  • Restaurant “La Luna” (Carrer Abaixadors 10)
  • Bun Bo (Vietnamese) and Rosa Negra (Mexican) restaurants
  • La Xampaneyeria and for the best paella O’toxo tres hermanos
  • Girona (Dali Museum), Montserrat Monastery (day trip)
  • FC Barcelona football match
  • Sitges (or Costa Brava for beautiful beaches)

I can absolutely recommend Barcelona as a semester abroad !

Study in Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona 8

Study in Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (7)

Study in Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (7)


If you decide to do a semester abroad, there are almost endless possibilities where you can do it. My choice fell on Spain and ultimately on Barcelona, ​​which I can really recommend to everyone. In addition to Barcelona, ​​Paris and Madrid were also shortlisted, but these were dropped due to the limited number of students. For this reason, I finally applied for a semester abroad in Barcelona at the UAB.

When the decision was made that I would like to do my semester abroad in Barcelona, the preparations for this somewhat exciting phase of life began. MicroEDU took over the organization and was the contact person for questions about the application and communication with the UAB. The registration process was very smooth and went without any major problems.

After the registration was carried out and the tuition fees paid, there was not much more organizational work to do. Only health insurance, credit card, identity card and possibly the international accident protection were checked again for validity. Then it was time to book a flight and find an apartment.

Finding accommodation in Barcelona

The finding accommodation in Barcelona is very difficult and the opinions on this are very different. The on-site search offers a number of possibilities, but the online search should not be underestimated either. If you take care of yourself on site and arrange a viewing, then you can spot any damage / fraudsters directly and decide against the apartment.

I found and booked my apartment together with my girlfriend through the agency SH Barcelona. Real estate agencies do have service fees, but they are very professional and provide good service and support. Our apartment was really very clean, nicely decorated and well located in the Eixample district.

Studied at the UAB

Studies at the UAB essentially consist of lectures, group work and presentations. The different courses, which were chosen in advance, bring interesting topics, but also a lot of work with them. However, the workload differs from course to course. Read more student reviews on Ehuacom.

The course selection at the UAB in Barcelona was already made with the binding registration at the university. The available courses with course descriptions could be accessed and compared via the university’s website. After consulting with the course director in Heidenheim, I decided on the courses in International Finance, International Business and International Economics. The courses were recorded and confirmed with the learning agreement.

With the beginning of the stay abroad, the division of the courses, the introduction by the head of the program and the handover of the timetables followed. The briefing was structured and without any further problems. The courses started the same week. In summary, the courses chosen were very structured, interesting and demanded high standards. I liked International Business best. This subject will be particularly helpful for my later work, as we have covered basic concepts and strategies that explain international cooperation between companies.

During the four months there were various offers of the UAB for cultural exchange and leisure activities together with Spanish students of the UAB. There was also the opportunity to attend lectures and meetings with entrepreneurs and business people from Barcelona. In general, the support from the host university was really very good. The administrators’ office was manned around the clock and they were available to answer any questions.


Life outside of university in Barcelona mainly took place on the beach, in the great squares, in small bars and cafes. Barcelona has a lot to offer here and it never gets boring. Street festivals, open-air concerts, watching sunsets – in Barcelona you feel like you’re on vacation.

In addition to Barcelona, ​​Spain also has other beautiful cities and landscapes to offer. During my stay I visited Madrid, Seville, Sitges and the mountains around Montserrat, the largest mountain in Catalonia. If the urge to travel is even greater, there are other destinations in Spain available.

The relaxed Spanish way of life is particularly noticeable in everyday life. Compared to the German attitude, it is very different and very challenging in some life situations. But in general the Spaniards, and especially the Catalans, are friendly people.


The study abroad should generate new ways of thinking and approaches to problems and general international experience for me. These goals were met in each case. Studying abroad was a great experience and helped me advance as a person. I would recommend it to anyone who wants to break out of their usual comfort zone. Because only then can you have these experiences.

The experience abroad also helps me academically and adds an international aspect to my studies so far. Personally, I also appreciate my decision to go abroad. Another good foundation stone has been laid for my further professional and academic development.

Study in Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona 7