An extract on #germany
Various Germanic tribes have inhabited the northern parts of modern Germany since classical antiquity. A region named Germania was documented before 100 AD. During the Migration Period, the Germanic tribes expanded southward. Beginning in the 10th century, German territories formed a central part of the Holy Roman Empire. During the 16th century, northern German regions became the centre of the Protestant Reformation. After the collapse of the Holy Roman Empire, the German Confederation was formed in 1815. The German revolutions of 184849 resulted in the Frankfurt Parliament establishing major democratic rights.
In 1871, Germany became a nation state when most of the German states unified into the Prussian-dominated German Empire. After World War I and the German Revolution of 191819, the Empire was replaced by the parliamentary Weimar Republic. In 1933 the Nazi seizure of power quickly led to the establishment of Nazi Germany which was built upon a dictatorship and consequently led to World War II and the Holocaust. After the end of World War II in Europe and a period of Allied occupation, two German states were founded: the democratic West Germany and the socialist East Germany. On 3 October 1990, the country was reunified.
In the 21st century, Germany is a great power and has the world's fourth-largest economy by nominal GDP, as well as the fifth-largest by PPP. As a global leader in several industrial and technological sectors, it is both the world's third-largest exporter and importer of goods. Germany is a developed country with a very high standard of living sustained by a skilled and productive society. It upholds a social security and universal health care system, environmental protection and a tuition-free university education.
The Federal Republic of Germany was a founding member of the European Economic Community in 1957 and the European Union in 1993. It is part of the Schengen Area, and became a co-founder of the Eurozone in 1999. Germany is a member of the United Nations, NATO, the G7 (formerly G8), the G20, and the OECD. The national military expenditure is the 9th highest in the world. Known for its rich cultural history, Germany has been continuously the home of influential and successful artists, philosophers, musicians, sportspeople, entrepreneurs, scientists, engineers, and inventors.
The English word Germany derives from the Latin Germania, which came into use after Julius Caesar adopted it for the peoples east of the Rhine. The German term Deutschland, originally diutisciu land ("the German lands") is derived from deutsch (cf. dutch), descended from Old High German diutisc "popular" (i.e. belonging to the diot or diota "people"), originally used to distinguish the language of the common people from Latin and its Romance descendants. This in turn descends from Proto-Germanic *iudiskaz "popular" (see also the Latinised form Theodiscus), derived from *eud, descended from Proto-Indo-European *tewth- "people", from which the word "Teutons" also originates.