Germany

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History

History

The Celts are believed to have been the first inhabitants of Germany. They were followed by German tribes at the end of the 2nd century B.C. German invasions destroyed the declining Roman Empire in the 4th and 5th centuries A.D. One of the tribes, the Franks, attained supremacy in western Europe under Charlemagne, who was crowned Holy Roman Emperor in 800. By the Treaty of Verdun (843), Charlemagne's lands east of the Rhine were ceded to the German Prince Louis. Additional territory acquired by the Treaty of Mersen (870) gave Germany approximately the area it maintained throughout the Middle Ages. For several centuries after Otto the Great was crowned king in 936, German rulers were also usually heads of the Holy Roman Empire.

By the 14th century, the Holy Roman Empire was little more than a loose federation of the German princes who elected the Holy Roman Emperor. In 1438, Albert of Hapsburg became emperor, and for the next several centuries the Hapsburg line ruled the Holy Roman Empire until its decline in 1806.

Relations between state and church were changed by the Reformation, which began with Martin Luther's 95 theses, and came to a head in 1547, when Charles V scattered the forces of the Protestant League at Mühlberg. The Counter-Reformation followed. A dispute over the succession to the Bohemian throne brought on the Thirty Years' War (1618–1648), which devastated Germany and left the empire divided into hundreds of small principalities virtually independent of the emperor.

Following the French revolution, the German states fought against Napoleon’s army.
After the revolutions of 1848, the first German Parliament was created.

After a victory in the French-Prussian war in 1871, a unification of the German states was attained, which initiated a period of great advances in various areas, the economy, the political area and the military. This is the time when Germany becomes one of the great world powers alongside the United Kingdom.

During the next two decades, the Bismarckian systems, which dominate the European politics, were established.

In 1914, when World War broke out, the fall of the Hohenzollern dynasty started as Germany was defeated. The winning nations impose the Versailles Treaty and the German territory splits in two once more.

After the defeat, the Weimar Republic was initiated. There was an economic crisis and the German National Socialist Workers’ Party (Nazi) obtains the power doing away with democracy.
Nazi Germany lasted 12 years (1933-1945). Hitler got the full control succeeding also the head of state.

At first Germany had great military successes gaining control over countries in Europe Belgium, France, Denmark, The Netherlands, Luxemburg, Greece, The Balkans and Norway, Tunes and Libya in North Africa. But its attack on Russia in 1941 failed.

In spite of being one of the defeated countries, its economic recovery was quick after 1950 and it becomes the third economic world power.

In 1990 the four allied powers and the 2 federal states signed an agreement in Moscow to end the rights of the allied powers in Germany.

As a founding country, Germany had a main role in the constructions of the European Union.
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Source: http://www.spainexchange.com/guide/DE-history.htm