Europe

Europe is generally agreed to be the birthplace of western culture, including such legendary innovations as the democratic nation-state, football and tomato sauce.

The word Europe comes from the Greek goddess Europa, who was kidnapped by Zeus and plunked down on the island of Crete. Europa gradually changed from referring to mainland Greece until it extended finally to include Norway and Russia.

Don't be confused that Europe is called a continent without looking like an island, the way the other continents do. It's okay. The Ural mountains have steadily been there to divide Europe from Asia for the last 250 million years. Russia technically inhabits "Eurasia".

Europe is presently uniting into one political and economic zone with a common currency called the Euro. The European Union originated in 1993 and is now composed of 27 member states. Its headquarters is in Brussels, Belgium.

Do not confuse the EU with the Council of Europe, which has 47 member states and dates to 1949. These two bodies share the same flag, national anthem, and mission of integrating Europe. The headquarters of the Council are located in Strasbourg, France, and it is most famous for its European Court of Human Rights.

In spite of these two bodies, there is still no single Constitution or set of laws applying to all the countries of Europe. Debate rages over the role of the EU in regards to national sovereignty. As of January 2009, the Lisbon Treaty is the closest thing to a European Constitution, yet it has not been approved by all the EU states. 

Text by Steve Smith.

Mike Anton
Organ and North aisle in St May Magdalene church, Bolney
Mike Anton
Tower entrance of St Mary Magdalene, Bolney
Igors Jefimovs
Mītavas bridge at night
Евгений Орлов
Dsc06793z Panorama
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Blasiikirche Nordhausen Orgel
Uwe Wieteck
Die milchstrasse uber dem rossfeld
Igors Jefimovs
Lielupe river view from Pasta island on a foggy day
Сергей Перцев
Autumn
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San Salvatore Lugano Suisse
Geoff Mather
Finch Foundry, Machinery In Action, Sticklepath, Devon, England
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chateau Pointe de Dinan C18
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Trelissick Gardens, Parkland View, Cornwall, England
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Pointe de Dinan C16
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церковь царевича Димитрия на Крови
Vasily Kumaev & Andrew Mishin
Vasilevskoye. Church. Interior. (2009)
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Makarskaentrance
Hans Molenkamp
Baska Voda
Tom Hurley
Bamburgh Dunes
Tom Hurley
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