Portal:France

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Main Page   Gazetteer  

Welcome to the France Portal!
Bienvenue sur le Portail France !

Flag France
Map of France in the world and position of its largest single land territory in continental Europe.

France (French: [fʁɑ̃s] (About this soundlisten)), officially the French Republic (French: République française, pronounced [ʁepyblik fʁɑ̃sɛːz] (About this soundlisten)), is a country whose territory consists of metropolitan France in Western Europe and several overseas regions and territories. The metropolitan area of France extends from the Mediterranean Sea to the English Channel and the North Sea, and from the Rhine to the Atlantic Ocean. It is bordered by Belgium, Luxembourg and Germany to the northeast, Switzerland and Italy to the east, and Andorra and Spain to the south. The overseas territories include French Guiana in South America and several islands in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans. The country's 18 integral regions (five of which are situated overseas) span a combined area of 643,801 square kilometres (248,573 sq mi) and a total population of 67.02 million (). France is a unitary semi-presidential republic with its capital in Paris, the country's largest city and main cultural and commercial centre. Other major urban areas include Lyon, Marseille, Toulouse, Bordeaux, Lille and Nice.

During the Iron Age, what is now metropolitan France was inhabited by the Gauls, a Celtic people. Rome annexed the area in 51 BC, holding it until the arrival of Germanic Franks in 476, who formed the Kingdom of Francia. The Treaty of Verdun of 843 partitioned Francia into East Francia, Middle Francia and West Francia. West Francia, which became the Kingdom of France in 987, emerged as a major European power in the Late Middle Ages, following its victory in the Hundred Years' War (1337–1453). During the Renaissance, French culture flourished and a global colonial empire was established, which by the 20th century would become the second largest in the world. The 16th century was dominated by religious civil wars between Catholics and Protestants (Huguenots). France became Europe's dominant cultural, political, and military power in the 17th century under Louis XIV. In the late 18th century, the French Revolution overthrew the absolute monarchy, establishing one of modern history's earliest republics and drafting the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, which expresses the nation's ideals to this day.

In the 19th century, Napoleon took power and established the First French Empire. His subsequent Napoleonic Wars (1803–15) shaped the course of continental Europe. Following the collapse of the Empire, France endured a tumultuous succession of governments culminating with the establishment of the French Third Republic in 1870. France was a major participant in World War I, from which it emerged victorious, and was one of the Allies in World War II, but came under occupation by the Axis powers in 1940. Following liberation in 1944, a Fourth Republic was established and later dissolved in the course of the Algerian War. The Fifth Republic, led by Charles de Gaulle, was formed in 1958 and remains today. Algeria and nearly all the other colonies became independent in the 1960s, with most retaining close economic and military connections with France.

France has long been a global centre of art, science, and philosophy. It hosts the world's fourth-largest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites and is the leading tourist destination, receiving around 83 million foreign visitors annually. France is a developed country with the world's sixth-largest economy by nominal GDP, and tenth-largest by purchasing power parity. In terms of aggregate household wealth, it ranks fourth in the world. France performs well in international rankings of education, health care, life expectancy, and human development. France is considered a great power in global affairs, being one of the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council with the power to veto and an official nuclear-weapon state. It is a leading member state of the European Union and the Eurozone, and a member of the Group of 7, North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the World Trade Organization (WTO), and La Francophonie. Read more...

Read more about France, its history and people

Cscr-featured.png Featured article - show another

This is a Featured article, which represents some of the best content on English Wikipedia..

1897 illustration of La Peau de chagrin, drawn by Adrien Moreau and published by George Barrie & Son

La Peau de chagrin (French pronunciation: ​[la po də ʃaɡʁɛ̃], The Skin of Sorrow) is an 1831 novel by French novelist and playwright Honoré de Balzac (1799–1850). Set in early 19th-century Paris, it tells the story of a young man who finds a magic piece of shagreen that fulfills his every desire. For each wish granted, however, the skin shrinks and consumes a portion of his physical energy. La Peau de chagrin belongs to the Études philosophiques group of Balzac's sequence of novels, La Comédie humaine.

Before the book was completed, Balzac created excitement about it by publishing a series of articles and story fragments in several Parisian journals. Although he was five months late in delivering the manuscript, he succeeded in generating sufficient interest that the novel sold out instantly upon its publication. A second edition, which included a series of twelve other "philosophical tales", was released one month later. Read more...

Cscr-featured.png Featured biography - show another

Honoré de Balzac on an 1842 daguerreotype by Louis-Auguste Bisson
Honoré de Balzac was a French novelist and playwright. His magnum opus was a sequence of short stories and novels collectively entitled, La Comédie humaine, which presents a panorama of French life in the years after the 1815 fall of Napoleon.

Due to his keen observation of detail and unfiltered representation of society, Balzac is regarded as one of the founders of realism in European literature. He is renowned for his multifaceted characters, who are complex, morally ambiguous and fully human. His writing influenced many subsequent novelists such as Marcel Proust, Émile Zola, Charles Dickens, Edgar Allan Poe, Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Gustave Flaubert, Benito Pérez Galdós, Marie Corelli, Henry James, William Faulkner, Jack Kerouac, and Italo Calvino, and philosophers such as Friedrich Engels and Karl Marx. Many of Balzac's works have been made into or have inspired films, and they are a continuing source of inspiration for writers, filmmakers and critics.

An enthusiastic reader and independent thinker as a child, Balzac had trouble adapting to the teaching style of his grammar school. His willful nature caused trouble throughout his life and frustrated his ambitions to succeed in the world of business. When he finished school, Balzac was an apprentice in a law office, but he turned his back on the study of law after wearying of its inhumanity and banal routine. Before and during his career as a writer, he attempted to be a publisher, printer, businessman, critic, and politician; he failed in all of these efforts. La Comédie humaine reflects his real-life difficulties, and includes scenes from his own experience.

Selected cuisine - show another

Bol d'aligot.jpg

Aligot is a dish made from cheese blended into mashed potatoes (often with some garlic) that is made in L'Aubrac (Aveyron, Cantal, Lozère, Occitanie) region in southern Massif Central of France. This fondue-like dish from the Aveyron department is a common sight in Auvergne restaurants.

Traditionally made with the Tomme de Laguiole (Tome fraîche) or Tomme d'Auvergne cheese, aligot is a French country speciality highly appreciated in the local gastronomy with Toulouse sausages or roast pork. Other cheeses are used in place of Tomme, including Mozzarella, Cantal and Laguiole. Read more...

Symbol support vote.svg Good article - show another

This is a Good article, an article that meets a core set of high editorial standards.

The All Blacks performing a haka prior to a Test match against France in 2006

The national rugby union teams of France and New Zealand (the All Blacks) have been playing each other for over a century; as of 19 October 2015, they have played 56 Test matches against each other. The first encounter, during the historic 1905–1906 All Blacks tour of Europe and North America, which was also France's first Test, took place in Paris in January 1906 and was won by New Zealand 38–8. It was not until their third meeting, in 1954, that France secured their first win over New Zealand (3–0).

France first toured New Zealand in 1961 – before any of the Home Nations – and the All Blacks won all three Tests. The All Blacks' first full tour of France was in 1977,[i] when they won one of the two Tests. France first defeated the All Blacks in New Zealand on Bastille Day 1979. France achieved a first series win in New Zealand in 1994, when they won both Tests. Since 2000, the two teams have contested the Dave Gallaher Trophy. Read more...

Picture of the Month (Archive)


201 au 28 -07-2004 553.jpg


The "Baie des Tortues" (Turtles Bay) near "La Roche percée" (The Bored Rock) at Bourail in New Caledonia, a "collectivité sui generis" administered by France.
Photo credit: Bananaflo

Pierre-François Palloy.

Topics

Major articles. Linked categories are listed in bold typeface.

Geographic topics

Major articles. Linked categories are listed in bold typeface.

Categories

Related portals

Things you can do

Clipboard.svg Wikipedia:France-related tasks
vieweditdiscusshistorywatch

French Wikipedia

Wikipedia-logo-v2-fr.svg
There is a French version of Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Other Wikimedia and Wikiportals

The following Wikimedia Foundation sister projects provide more on this subject:

Wikibooks
Books

Commons
Media

Wikinews 
News

Wikiquote 
Quotations

Wikisource 
Texts

Wikiversity
Learning resources

Wikivoyage 
Travel guides

Wiktionary 
Definitions

Wikidata 
Database

Parent portals: Europe | European Union

Portals