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Panoramic photo by Luis Filipe Azevedo EXPERT Taken 12:23, 25/05/2013 - Views loading...

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Maia Stadium - School closing party - Children build a heart on the pitch

The World > Europe > Portugal

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A: Maia Stadium - School closing party

by Luis Filipe Azevedo, 50 meters away

Maia Stadium - School closing party

B: Pavilhão Municipal da Maia

by Luis Filipe Azevedo, 140 meters away

Pavilhão Municipal da Maia

C: Maia, European City of Sport 2014 - Opening Ceremony

by Luis Filipe Azevedo, 200 meters away

Maia, European City of Sport 2014 - Opening Ceremony

D: Complexo Municipal de Ténis da Maia

by Luis Filipe Azevedo, 220 meters away

Complexo Municipal de Ténis da Maia

E: Complexo Municipal de Ginástica - Maia

by Luis Filipe Azevedo, 300 meters away

Complexo Municipal de Ginástica - Maia

F: Maia FIG Acro World Cup 2014 - FINAL DAY

by Luis Filipe Azevedo, 310 meters away

Maia FIG Acro World Cup 2014 - FINAL DAY

G: Maia FIG Acro World Cup 2014 - Opening Ceremomy

by Luis Filipe Azevedo, 320 meters away

Maia FIG Acro World Cup 2014 - Opening Ceremomy

H: Complexo Municipal de Ginástica - Maia

by Luis Filipe Azevedo, 320 meters away

Complexo Municipal de Ginástica - Maia

I: Torre Lidador

by Luis Filipe Azevedo, 340 meters away

Torre Lidador

J: Fórum da Maia

by Luis Filipe Azevedo, 360 meters away

Fórum da Maia

This panorama was taken in Portugal, Europe

This is an overview of 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.

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