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Portal:Europe

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Introduction

Europe orthographic Caucasus Urals boundary (with borders).svg

Europe is a continent located entirely in the Northern Hemisphere and mostly in the Eastern Hemisphere. It is bordered by the Arctic Ocean to the north, the Atlantic Ocean to the west and the Mediterranean Sea to the south. It comprises the westernmost part of Eurasia.

Since around 1850, Europe is most commonly considered to be separated from Asia by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas and the waterways of the Turkish Straits. Although the term "continent" implies physical geography, the land border is somewhat arbitrary and has been redefined several times since its first conception in classical antiquity. The division of Eurasia into two continents reflects East-West cultural, linguistic and ethnic differences which vary on a spectrum rather than with a sharp dividing line. The geographic border also does not follow political boundaries, with Turkey, Russia and Kazakhstan being transcontinental countries. A strict application of the Caucasus Mountains boundary also places two comparitively small countries, Azerbaijan and Georgia, in both continents.

Europe covers about 10,180,000 square kilometres (3,930,000 sq mi), or 2% of the Earth's surface (6.8% of land area). Politically, Europe is divided into about fifty sovereign states of which the Russian Federation is the largest and most populous, spanning 39% of the continent and comprising 15% of its population. Europe had a total population of about 741 million (about 11% of the world population) . The European climate is largely affected by warm Atlantic currents that temper winters and summers on much of the continent, even at latitudes along which the climate in Asia and North America is severe. Further from the sea, seasonal differences are more noticeable than close to the coast.

Featured panorama

Castle of São Jorge
Credit: Massimo Catarinella

The Moorish Castle of São Jorge occupies a commanding position overlooking the city of Lisbon, the capital of Portugal, and the Tagus River beyond. The fortified citadel, which dates from medieval times, is located atop the highest hill in the historic centre of the city. The castle is one of the main historical and touristic sites of Lisbon.



Selected article

The IFK Göteborg squad year 1905.
Idrottsföreningen Kamraterna Göteborg, commonly known as IFK Göteborg or simply Göteborg, is a Swedish professional football club based in Gothenburg. Founded on 4 October 1904, it is the only club in the Nordic countries that has won a pan-European competition, as the club won the UEFA Cup in 1982 and 1987. IFK is affiliated with Göteborgs Fotbollförbund and play all their home games at Gamla Ullevi since the start of the 2009 season. The club colours are blue and white, colours shared both with the sports society—Idrottsföreningen Kamraterna—which the club originated from, and with the home town of Gothenburg.

Besides the two UEFA Cup titles, they have won 18 Swedish championship titles, second most in Swedish football after Malmö FF, and have the third most national cup titles with seven. The team has qualified for four group stages of the UEFA Champions League, and reached the semi-finals of the 1985–86 European Cup. IFK Göteborg is the only Swedish club team in any sport to have won the Radiosportens Jerringpris—an award for best sports performance of the year voted by the Swedish people—for the 1982 UEFA Cup victory. IFK is one of the most popular football clubs in Sweden, with diverse country-wide support.They currently play in the highest Swedish league, Allsvenskan, where they have played for the majority of their history. They have played top-flight football in Sweden continuously since 1977, which currently is the longest top-flight tenure of any club in Sweden—the second longest is Helsingborgs IF, since 1993.


Featured portrait

Portrait of Cardinal Richelieu wikidata:Q26492852
Credit: Philippe de Champaigne

Armand Jean du Plessis, best known as Cardinal Richelieu (1585–1642) was a French clergyman, noble and statesman. Born to a family of the Poitou lesser nobility, by 1607 he had become Bishop of Luçon, and he soon entered politics. He worked to consolidate the royal power of King Louis XIII, and in 1624 – two years after being elevated to cardinal – he was made the King's chief minister. Richelieu was also a patron of the arts, establishing the Académie française, which is responsible for matters pertaining to the French language.

Selected image

Princess Victoria of Sweden and Daniel Westling
Credit: Holger Motzkau

The royal wedding between Victoria, Crown Princess of Sweden, and Daniel Westling took place on 19 June 2010 in Stockholm Cathedral. Westling—now known as Prince Daniel, Duke of Västergötland—became the first commoner to obtain a new title or rank as the spouse of a Swedish princess since the Middle Ages. He is the first Swedish man to use his wife's ducal title.

Selected biography

Photograph of Chopin by Bisson, c. 1849
Frédéric François Chopin (March 1810 – 17 October 1849), born Fryderyk Franciszek Chopin, was a Polish composer and virtuoso pianist of the Romantic era who wrote primarily for the solo piano. He gained and has maintained renown worldwide as a leading musician of his era, whose "poetic genius was based on a professional technique that was without equal in his generation." Chopin was born in what was then the Duchy of Warsaw and grew up in Warsaw, which in 1815 became part of Congress Poland. A child prodigy, he completed his musical education and composed his earlier works in Warsaw before leaving Poland at the age of 20, less than a month before the outbreak of the November 1830 Uprising.

At 21 he settled in Paris. Thereafter, during the last 18 years of his life, he gave only some 30 public performances, preferring the more intimate atmosphere of the salon. He supported himself by selling his compositions and by teaching piano, for which he was in high demand. Chopin formed a friendship with Franz Liszt and was admired by many of his musical contemporaries, including Robert Schumann. In 1835 he obtained French citizenship. After a failed engagement to Maria Wodzińska, from 1837 to 1847 he maintained an often troubled relationship with the French woman writer George Sand. A brief and unhappy visit to Majorca with Sand in 1838–39 was one of his most productive periods of composition. In his last years, he was financially supported by his admirer Jane Stirling, who also arranged for him to visit Scotland in 1848. Through most of his life, Chopin suffered from poor health. He died in Paris in 1849, at the age of 39, probably of tuberculosis.


Featured location

World largest Orthodox Church located in Belgrade, Serbia
Belgrade is the capital and largest city of Serbia. It is located at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers, where the Pannonian Plain meets the Balkans. Its name translates to "White city". The urban area of the City of Belgrade has a population of 1.34 million, while over 1.65 million people live within its administrative limits. One of the most important prehistoric cultures of Europe, the Vinča culture, evolved within the Belgrade area in the 6th millennium BC. In antiquity, Thraco-Dacians inhabited the region, and after 279 BC Celts conquered the city, naming it Singidūn.It was conquered by the Romans during the reign of Augustus, and awarded city rights in the mid-2nd century. It was settled by the Slavs in the 520s, and changed hands several times between the Byzantine Empire, Frankish Empire, Bulgarian Empire and Kingdom of Hungary before it became the capital of Serbian king Stephen Dragutin (1282–1316). In 1521, Belgrade was conquered by the Ottoman Empire and became the seat of the Sanjak of Smederevo.It frequently passed from Ottoman to Habsburg rule, which saw the destruction of most of the city during the Austro-Ottoman wars. Belgrade was again named the capital of Serbia in 1841. Northern Belgrade remained the southernmost Habsburg post until 1918, when the city was reunited. As a strategic location, the city was battled over in 115 wars and razed to the ground 44 times.


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