Europe History

Europe History

According to Countryaah, the name Europe is known with geographical significance from the oldest Greek poets. At Hesiod, Europe and Asia are both daughters of the world ocean, Okeanos; in the Homeric hymns, Europe denotes the Greek mainland without the Peloponnese and the islands. Yet in the Late Antiquity around 300 AD got a Roman province in Thrace (current European Turkey) named Europe. The expanded significance and earliest awareness of Europe as a continent is due to the Persian wars around 500 BC.


From the Greek historian Herodotus in 400 AD. and in the rest of antiquity three continents were counted, Europe, Asia and Libya (Africa), and the river Tanais (Don) was considered the eastern border of Europe. The knowledge of Western, Northern and Central Europe was gradually expanded as Greeks and Romans gained more regular trade relations with their own.

Country Central government debt’s share of GDP (percent) Assistance per person (US dollars) Service sector’s share of GDP (percent)
Albania 69.9 (2018) 55 (2017) 47.9 (2018)
Andorra 79.3 (2017)
Armenia 51.3 (2018) 87 (2017) 52.6 (2018)
Azerbaijan 18.8 (2018) 12 (2017) 35.2 (2018)
Belgium 102.0 (2018) 68.8 (2018)
Bosnia and Herzegovina 34.3 (2018) 126 (2017) 55.6 (2018)
Bulgaria 20.4 (2018) 59.2 (2018)
Cyprus 102.5 (2018) 26 (1996) 72.6 (2018)
Denmark 34.3 (2018) 65.0 (2018)
Estonia 8.3 (2018) 59.9 (2018)
Finland 59.3 (2018) 59.2 (2018)
France 98.4 (2018) 70.3 (2018)
Georgia 44.9 (2018) 120 (2017) 58.4 (2018)
Greece 184.9 (2018) 68.1 (2018)
Ireland 63.7 (2018) 55.8 (2018)
Iceland 37.6 (2018) 63.8 (2016)
Italy 132.2 (2018) 66.1 (2018)
Kosovo 17.0 (2018) 214 (2017) 53.4 (2018)
Croatia 74.6 (2018) 30 (2010) 58.0 (2018)
Latvia 35.9 (2018) 63.5 (2018)
Lithuania 34.2 (2018) 61.1 (2018)
Luxembourg 21.4 (2018) 79.2 (2018)
Northern Macedonia 72 (2017)
Malta 45.2 (2018) 28 (2002) 75.0 (2018)
Moldova 29.7 (2018) 68 (2017) 53.3 (2018)
Monaco 81.7 (2016)
Montenegro 72.6 (2018) 189 (2017) 59.1 (2017)
Netherlands 52.4 (2018) 69.9 (2018)
Norway 40.0 (2018) 55.6 (2018)
Poland 48.9 (2018) 56.4 (2016)
Portugal 120.1 (2018) 65.0 (2018)
Romania 36.7 (2018) 57.1 (2018)
Russia 14.6 (2018) 54.1 (2018)
San Marino 78.0 (2018)
Switzerland 40.5 (2018) 71.3 (2018)
Serbia 54.5 (2018) 240 (2017) 51.0 (2018)
Slovakia 48.9 (2018) 55.5 (2018)
Slovenia 70.4 (2018) 26 (2002) 56.3 (2018)
Spain 97.1 (2018) 65.9 (2018)
UK 86.8 (2018) 70.5 (2018)
Sweden 38.5 (2018) 64.8 (2018)
Czech Republic 32.6 (2018) 55.8 (2018)
Turkey 30.2 (2018) 39 (2017) 54.3 (2018)
Germany 61.7 (2018) 61.5 (2018)
Ukraine 60.2 (2018) 26 (2017) 51.3 (2018)
Hungary 70.8 (2018) 54.4 (2018)
Vatican City State
Belarus 47.8 (2018) – 27 (2017) 47.7 (2018)
Austria 73.8 (2018) 62.7 (2018)

The Greek world

From the beginning of the first millennium BC the Greeks developed their distinctive city-state culture, which corresponded to their settlement in secluded valleys, on islands and peninsulas. A constant shortage of land suitable for cultivation led to the emigration and construction of overseas urban facilities, so-called colonies. About 800 BC the west coast of Asia Minor was completely incorporated into the Greek territory. Then colonies were built along the northern Aegean Sea as well as all around the Black Sea, in some places in the eastern Mediterranean except southern Italy, in Sicily and as far west as Massilia (now Marseille). In some regions, non-Greek city states met, such as the Etruscans of Central Italy and the Phoenician colonies of the western Mediterranean.

The urban states developed a uniform culture. Intensive cultivation of wine and olives as well as the refinement of crafts soon allowed extensive exports to, among other things. grain-producing regions, so that some population growth in the cities was made possible. The original kingdoms and aristocratic forms of government were replaced in most places by egalitarian tyrant rule or democracy. Particularly contributing to this was the development of weapons and military organization. The heavily armed footmen who were identical to the male citizens of the state became strategically crucial, and new ideals such as individual self-assertion in solidarity with citizens united with willingness to sacrifice to the city came to characterize the Greek mentality. The prerequisite for citizen’s participation in political and cultural life was throughout ancient times that a significant part of the manual work was done by slaves.

During the Persian Wars in general and especially during the Xerxes invasion of Europe 480-479 BC the strength of this culture proved itself, and above all, Athens, which gained dominion over a federation of cities, experienced a time of prosperity in all areas. This “classical” period (400-300-t.) Became substantially the norm for all later European culture, including the political one. The Greeks came to the impression that they were superior to all other peoples, the so-called barbarians. However, Greece itself was conquered in 338 BC of its semi-barbaric neighbor, the Kingdom of Macedonia. With the Macedonian King Alexander the Great’s (336-23) conquest of the Persian Empire, a new period of Greek expansion and colonization began as far east as Indus. Under the Macedonian kings and later under the rule of Rome, the Greek citizen ideals had lost their original power of inspiration; but the city-state remained the form in which ancient life was organized, just as Greek language and literature were the most important medium of ancient culture.

The rise and dominance of the Roman Empire

On the border between Greek and Etruscan domination in Central Italy, Rome achieved by the middle of the first millennium BC. an independence that was still consolidated until all of Italy in 265 BC. was conquered. Through protracted wars with Carthage in the century thereafter, Rome succeeded in subjugating this state’s naval empire in the western Mediterranean, and attempts at intervention from Macedonia and Greece led to these countries becoming Roman provinces as well. Gradually, Rome’s empire was expanded until in the 1st year. B.C. under Caesar and Emperor Augustus came to include all countries bordering the Mediterranean, including the European mainland until the Rhine and the Danube, which in the following centuries was the fixed northern border of the kingdom. Furthermore, in the 1st century AD, conquered Britannia, ie England, but not Scotland and Ireland, and in the 2nd century Dacia (Romania).

The Roman city state had undergone the typical development: first primitive kingdoms, then aristocratic rule and finally a more democratic form of government, but the fierce civil wars between warring army leaders and politicians in the 1st century BC. ended up with the so-called principle; it meant that Augustus in 27 BC. became real sole ruler. The Roman Empire was thus established. It ensured the kingdom a relatively stable period of peace in the following two centuries, with the borders being strengthened and defended against the neighboring neighbors, ie. in Europe especially Germans and Sarmatians. However, the Romans also maintained a significant trade with these people.

The kingdom was divided into provinces where a Romanization took place; colonies were created and older tribal communities were converted into urban states. Apart from the actual Greece and the Aegean coast, mainland Europe gained Latin as a common language during the imperial era; Celtic and other earlier languages, however, remained long-lived in certain non-urbanized areas. In 212, Emperor Caracalla granted all free subjects in the Roman Roman civil court. This increased opportunities for integration, but the obligations to the central government grew simultaneously. As early as the beginning of the 100th century. the Roman historian and geographer Tacitus, who had a thorough knowledge of the Germanic tribes, praised their freedom at the expense of the Romans.

The need to maintain an ever-increasing army force, together with an expansion of the central administration, led to increasing tax burden and economic instability that, from the end of the 100-t. resulted in frequent political crises and wars between army divisions. The Roman Empire’s basic productivity did not grow, and labor shortages led to constant slave imports. In addition, there was undoubtedly still some immigration of free peasants. from Northern and Central Europe. On several occasions, immigration took the form of armed invasions of Germanic surplus populations, such as the Cimbers and Teutons in the late 100s, the Markomans in the second half of 100s. and especially Goths, Franks and Alemans in the second half of the 200-t. After the last invasion that, like the previous ones, was fought back,

Late Antiquity

Around the year 300, the empire was stabilized by a series of reforms under the emperors Diocletian and Constantine I the Great. Significant include the division of the Roman Empire into larger administrative units, diocesesgiving political geographical regions of Europe political status, for example, Britannia, Spain, Gaul and Italy; the last two both divided into a northern and southern part. In 311, Christianity was officially allowed, after it had been gradually widespread throughout the Roman Empire in the previous centuries, in the European provinces, however, for the time being only to a lesser extent. During the 300-t. Christianity greatly penetrated everywhere, and after 380 the state’s support for all the hitherto practiced religions ceased. The organization of the Christian Church, which followed the state, became a decisive factor in the continuation of the cultural unity during the fierce political upheavals of the following centuries. After 395, the Roman Empire was gradually divided into an eastern and a western part, which drifted apart.

Migration time

In the 370s, a new Germanic invasion wave, this time in part prompted by the Asian nomadic population, began the emergence of the females in the Danube region. In the decades that followed, land in Western Europe had to be left to the Goths, the Vandals, the Burgundians and other peoples, and new, partially independent kingdoms emerged during the 400-h. These immigrants transitioned to Christianity and soon gained Latin as a church and religious language. The Franks of Northern Gallia and anglers and scissors in Britain also established around 500. By contrast, the invasion of the Huns was halted by a Roman army at the Battle of the Catalan Fields in 451, where Germans fought on both sides. After that, the Western Roman Empire quickly disappeared and ceased at Emperor Nepos’ death in 480.

The East Roman Emperor Justinian I, who ruled 527-65, succeeded in capturing all of Italy as well as smaller parts of Spain and North Africa; but already between 568 and 600 Italy was invaded by a new Germanic people, the Longobards. About 600 Slavic people immigrated to smaller tribes in Eastern Europe including the Balkans. Here, in France and England, the new peoples made up a significant proportion of the population, while the Germanic element of southern Gallia, Spain and Italy was less numerous. See for all members of European Union. Within the ancient Roman borders, a system of double justice emerged in most places: Roman and Germanic. The Bulgarians created approx. 680 a lasting state around the Lower Danube with dominion over the Slavic tribes in the area. To this was added the Christian mission of the Eastern Roman Empire.

During the turbulence of the migrations, the towns disappeared in size, although most of them continued to exist as local centers. The economic importance of distance trading was declining, and natural economics were gaining ground. However, the old trade routes between the Orient and Europe, including Northern Europe, were never interrupted and new ones were established. A number of epidemics between 100- and 700-h. contributed to the weakening of the Mediterranean countries; the same was true of the fierce and protracted border wars between the Byzantine Empire and the Persian Empire until 628. This is why, after 636, the Arab caliphate could so quickly conquer the entire Middle East and North Africa. The Byzantine Empire was reduced to areas that could be held together by superior naval power, and for a long period, this was also threatened by the Caliphate. Constantinople was besieged 673-77 and 717-18,

In 711, an Arab army invaded the Iberian Peninsula, where the West Gothic Empire was quickly conquered, and the peninsula except Asturias in the northwest came under Arab rule and Islamic cultural influence. However, a further advance in France was halted at Poitiers in 732. During the weakening of the Byzantine rule in Italy, the kingdom of the Longobards had conquered Ravenna and threatened Rome; but the pope allied himself with the Frankish Carolingian dynasty, secured its takeover of the king’s power in 751, and achieved even sovereignty in the former imperial parts of central Italy. This was supported by the largest document forgery in European history, the Constantinian Gift Certificate.

Europe History