Why did Macedonia's name cause problems between that country and Greece?

When Macedonia declared independence in 1991, Greece felt indignant that a modern country would use what it felt was a historically Greek name. Greece blocked trade to Macedonia until 1995, when the two countries signed an agreement of understanding. The official name that the United Nations recognizes is the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, although most countries refer to it as the Republic of Macedonia, its constitutional name.

Is Transylvania a country?

The home of Count Dracula, Transylvania is a region located in central Romania. Transylvania is surrounded by the Transylvanian Alps and the Carpathian Mountains. A productive region in the western part of Romania, it contributes more than one-third of the total economic output of that country today.

Where is Crimea?

Protruding into the Black Sea, Crimea is a diamond-shaped peninsula attached—by the Isthmus of Perekop—to southern Ukraine. Though Crimea declared its independence from Ukraine in 1992, it later compromised and became an autonomous republic of Ukraine.

The Hagia Sophia in Istanbul now serves as a museum in Turkey. It was originally a church built by the Byzantine Emperor Justinian in the sixth century C.E.

The Hagia Sophia in Istanbul now serves as a museum in Turkey. It was originally a church built by the Byzantine Emperor Justinian in the sixth century C.E.

Where is the Putrid Sea?

The Putrid Sea, also known as the Sivash Sea, lies to the east of the Isthmus of Perekop, between Crimea and Ukraine. It is a swampy area of salty lagoons.

What was the Byzantine Empire?

After the fall of Rome in 476 c.e., the eastern portion of the Roman Empire became the Byzantine Empire. The capital city of the Byzantine Empire was moved far east to Constantinople (now Istanbul). At one point, the empire included most of the eastern and southern coast of the Mediterranean Sea. The empire shrank in size until 1453, when Constantinople was conquered by the Ottoman Empire.

What two countries emerged from Czechoslovakia?

Czechoslovakia was created at the end of World War I (1918) by the Allies as a new country containing the area where the Czechs and Slovaks live. In 1967 and 1968, Czechoslovakia attempted to move away from Communism, but the Soviet Union and Warsaw Pact countries invaded, squelching such aspirations. This "Prague Spring," as it was known, was the first military action taken by the countries of the Warsaw Pact.

What are steppes?

Common throughout Russia, Asia, and central Europe, a steppe is a dry, short-grass plain that can be flat or hilly. While most steppes were once forested areas, cultivation and overgrazing by animals have left only short grasses and barren landscapes.

In 1992, the two republics of Czechoslovakia agreed to divide into two independent countries—the Czech Republic and Slovakia. The dissolution of Czechoslovakia was a peaceful one.

What two cities make up Budapest?

Budapest, Hungary, is actually two cities—Buda and Pest. The two cities are separated by the Danube River; Buda is on the west bank and Pest is on the east bank. The province in which the twin cities are located is also called Budapest.

What playwright and author became president of an Eastern European country?

Czech poet and author Vaclav Havel was both the last president of Czechoslovakia (1989-1992), and the first president of the Czech Republic (1992-2003). He has won numerous literary awards for his works, as well as the U.S. Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest honor bestowed by the president of the United States to a civilian.

Who was Lech Walesa?

In 1970 Lech Walesa was one of the leaders of a shipyard workers strike in Gdansk, Poland. Later, he organized workers in non-communist labor unions, arguing for improved conditions for workers. In 1980, he led the Gdansk shipyard strike, which ended with the government agreeing with his provisions on behalf of workers, including the right to strike and the right to form independent unions. The Catholic Church, which is very influential in Poland, supported his activities, including his formation of the Solidarity Movement. Walesa was later elected president of Poland and served in office from 1990 to 1995.

Who are the Maygar?

Maygars are the predominant ethnic group of Hungary. The group originated in Asia, east of the Ural Mountains, and have a language much different from any other in Europe.

Do Caucasians come from the Caucasus Mountains?

In the latter half of the nineteenth century, scientists attempted to divide the world's peoples into "races." Each race was defined by the color of its skin, a process that was laced with stereotypes. These scientists used the term "Caucasian" for "white" people because they believed that the region of the Caucasus Mountains of Southwest Asia was their origin. Since that time, we have learned that there is but one human race and that it originated in Africa.

Which river touches more countries than any other?

The Danube River, which begins in Germany, passes through or borders 10 countries in Europe, more than any other river in the world. On its journey, the Danube River encounters Germany, Austria, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia and Montenegro, Romania, Bulgaria, Moldova, and Ukraine.

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