Streets of Puerto Banus close to Marbella in Spain
The Old Town of Marbella retains traces of a historical process as interesting as dilated in time. Although there are data to suggest the existence of a previous settlement, its origins date back to the early centuries of Roman rule. For the moment, there is ample evidence, the most recurrent presence of several capitals in the construction of one of the towers of the medieval citadel in the line of Trinity Street. Apart from this issue, we can say that the current Historic is due to the introduction and evolution of a Muslim settlement, made in converging architectural remains, archaeological remains and testimonies of chroniclers and travelers since the twelfth century onwards.
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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.