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Germany

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


This article is about the country. For other uses of terms redirecting here, see Germany
(disambiguation) and Deutschland (disambiguation).
Federal Republic of Germany
Bundesrepublik Deutschland


Flag Coat of arms

Motto:
"Einigkeit und Recht und Freiheit" (German)
"Unity and Justice and Freedom" (unofficial)
[1][2][3]

Anthem:
Third stanza of
Das Lied der Deutschen
[4]

(Song of the Germans)

Bundesadler


Location of Germany (dark green)
in Europe (green & dark grey)
in the European Union (green) [Legend]

Capital
and largest city
Berlin
5231N 1323E
Official languages German
[1]

Ethnic groups (2012
[6]
)
80% Germans
[5]

3.7% German Turks
1.9% German Poles
1.5% German Russians
0.9% German Italians
0.7% German Africans
11.2% Other
Demonym German
Government Federal parliamentaryconstitutional
republic
- President Joachim Gauck
- President of the
Bundestag
Norbert Lammert
- Chancellor Angela Merkel
- President of the Bundesrat Stephan Weil
- President of the
Bundesverfassungsgericht
Andreas Vokuhle
Legislature
- Upper house Bundesrat
- Lower house Bundestag
Formation
- Holy Roman Empire 2 February 962
- German Confederation 8 June 1815
- Unification 18 January 1871
- Federal Republic 23 May 1949
- Founded the EEC(now
the European Union)
1 January 1958
- Reunification 3 October 1990
Area
- Total 357,168 km
2
(63rd)
137,847 sq mi
- Water (%) 2.416
Population
- 2014 estimate 80,716,000
[7]
(16th)
- 2011 census 80,219,695
[8]
(16th)
- Density 226/km
2
(58th)
583/sq mi
GDP (PPP) 2014 estimate
- Total $3.338 trillion
[9]
(5th)
- Per capita $41,248
[9]
(16th)
GDP (nominal) 2014 estimate
- Total $3.876 trillion
[9]
(4th)
- Per capita $47,893
[9]
(15th)
Gini (2011) 29.0
[10]

low
HDI (2013) 0.911
[11]

very high 6th
Currency Euro ()
[2]
(EUR)
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
- Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Drives on the right
Calling code 49
ISO 3166 code DE
Internet TLD .de
[3]

a.
^ Danish, Low German, Sorbian, Romany, and Frisian are officially recognised
by the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages (ECRML).
b.
^ Before 2002, the Deutschmark.
c.
^ The .eu domain is also used, as it is shared with other European
Unionmember states.
Germany (
i
/drmni/; German: Deutschland), officially the Federal Republic of
Germany (German:Bundesrepublik Deutschland, pronounced [bndsepublik dtlant] (
listen)),
[12]
is a federalparliamentary republic in western-central Europe consisting of 16 constituent
states, which retain limited sovereignty. Its capital city and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers
an area of 357,021 square kilometres (137,847 sq mi) and has a largely temperate seasonal
climate. With 80.6 million inhabitants, it is the most populous member state in the European
Union. Germany is a major economic and political power of the European continent and a historic
leader in many cultural, theoretical and technical fields. After the USA and Russia, Germany is
the third most popular migration destination in the world.
[13]

Various Germanic tribes have occupied what is now northern Germany and southern
Scandinavia sinceclassical antiquity. A region named Germania was documented by
the Romans before AD 100. During theMigration Period that coincided with the decline of the
Roman Empire, the Germanic tribes expanded southward and established kingdoms throughout
much of Europe. Beginning in the 10th century, German territories formed a central part of
the Holy Roman Empire.
[14]
During the 16th century, northern German regions became the centre
of the Protestant Reformation. The rise of Pan-Germanism inside the German Confederation,
which had been occupied during the Napoleonic Wars, resulted in the unification of most of the
German states in 1871 into the Prussian dominated German Empire.
After the German Revolution of 19181919 and the military defeat in World War I, the Empire
was replaced by the parliamentary Weimar Republic and lost some of its territory as a result of
the Treaty of Versailles. Despite its prominence in many scientific and cultural fields at that time,
Germany experienced significant economic and political instability, which intensified during
the Great Depression. The establishment of the Third Reich, or Nazi Regime, in 1933 eventually
led to World War II and theHolocaust. After the defeat of 1945, Germany was divided by Allied
occupation, and evolved into two states, East Germany and West Germany. In 1990, the country
was reunified.
Germany has the world's fourth-largest economy by nominal GDP and the fifth-largest by
purchasing power parity. As a global leader in several industrial and technological sectors, it is
both the world's third-largest exporter and third-largest importer of goods. It is a developed
country with a very high standard of living, featuring comprehensive social security that includes
the world's oldest universal health caresystem. Known for its rich cultural and political history,
Germany has been the home of many
influentialphilosophers, artists, musicians, cineasts, entrepreneurs, scientists and inventors.
Germany was a founding member of the European Community in 1957, which became the EU in
1993. It is part of theSchengen Area, and has been a member of the eurozone since 1999.
Germany is a great power in the world, and is a member of the United Nations, NATO, the G8,
the G20, the OECD and the Council of Europe.
Contents
[hide]
1 Etymology
2 History
o 2.1 Prehistory
o 2.2 Germanic tribes and Frankish Empire
o 2.3 Holy Roman Empire
o 2.4 German Confederation and Empire
o 2.5 Weimar Republic and the Third Reich
o 2.6 East and West Germany
o 2.7 German reunification and the EU
3 Geography
o 3.1 Climate
o 3.2 Biodiversity
4 Politics
o 4.1 Law
o 4.2 Constituent states
o 4.3 Foreign relations
o 4.4 Military
5 Economy
o 5.1 Infrastructure
o 5.2 Science and technology
o 5.3 Tourism
6 Demographics
o 6.1 National minorities
o 6.2 Immigrant population
o 6.3 Urbanization
o 6.4 Religion
o 6.5 Languages
o 6.6 Education
o 6.7 Health
7 Culture
o 7.1 Art
o 7.2 Music
o 7.3 Architecture
o 7.4 Literature and philosophy
o 7.5 Cinema
o 7.6 Media
o 7.7 Cuisine
o 7.8 Sports
o 7.9 Fashion
8 See also
9 References
10 External links
Etymology
Further information: Names of Germany
The English word Germany derives from the Latin Germania, which came into use after Julius
Caesaradopted it for the peoples east of the Rhine.
[15]
More specifically, it was the Gauls who first
called the people who crossed east of the Rhine Germani (which the Romans adopted) as the
original Germanic tribes did not refer to themselves as Germanus (singular) or Germani (plural).
Thus it was only when on Roman soil that this term was employed and the expression generally
connoted those peoples who originally hailed east of the Rhine and/or north of the Danube.
[16]

The German endonym Deutschland derives from the Proto-Germanic root *theudo, meaning
"people, race, nation", which was initially used as a blanket term referring to the 'common
language' of Germanic people. In its beginnings, it did not specifically indicate the German
language or people. In the first recorded instance of the word (late 8th century) it is used to cover
the language of the Kingdom of Mercia, which was English.
[17]
As modern ethnic groups started to
form, they increasingly used more specific terms for their respective groups. For example the
Germanic speaking inhabitants of the British Isles became Anglo-Saxons, Angles and
later: English. Many 'proto-Germans' did so as well, with many of the German authors of the High
Middle Ages differentiating between (among others) "Bavarians", "Saxons" or
"Swabians".
[18]
These terms were modelled on the stem duchies, large land units generally ruled
by local dynasties and, at least partly, based on earlier tribal affiliations.
[19]
With the ever
increasing political fragmentation of theHoly Roman Empire following the Investiture Contest,
these forms of self-identification became less prominent and the use of *theudo (in its many
dialectal forms) became more prominent as a cover-all term to refer to Germanic/German
speakers not otherwise specified. It is in this sense, that Diutisklant(Deutschland, Germany) is
first attested in the 13th century.
[20][21]

History
Main article: History of Germany
Prehistory
The discovery of the Mauer 1 mandible in 1907 shows that ancient humans were present in
Germany at least 600,000 years ago.
[22]
The oldest complete hunting weapons found anywhere in
the world were discovered in a coal mine in Schningen, Germany in 1995 where three 380,000
year old wooden javelins 6-7.5 feet long were unearthed.
[23]
The Neander valley (German "thal")
in Germany was the location where the first ever non-modern human fossil was discovered and
recognised in 1856, the new species of human was named Neanderthal man. The Neanderthal
1 fossils are now known to be 40,000 years old. Evidence of modern humans, similarly dated,
has been found in caves in the Swabian Jura near Ulm. The finds include 42,000 year old bird
bone and mammoth ivory flutes which are the oldest musical instruments ever found,
[24]
the
40,000 year old Ice Age Lion Man which is the oldest uncontested figurative art ever
discovered,
[25]
and the 35,000 year old Venus of Hohle Fels which is the oldest uncontested
human figurative art ever discovered.
[26]

Germanic tribes and Frankish Empire
Main articles: Germania and Migration Period

Second- to fifth-century migrations in Europe
The Germanic tribes are thought to date from the Nordic Bronze Age or the Pre-Roman Iron Age.
From southern Scandinavia and north Germany, they expanded south, east and west from the
1st century BC, coming into contact with the Celtic tribes of Gaul as well as Iranian, Baltic,
and Slavic tribes in Central and Eastern Europe.
[27]
Under Augustus, Rome began to invade
Germania (an area extending roughly from the Rhine to the Ural Mountains). In AD 9,
threeRoman legions led by Publius Quinctilius Varus were defeated by
the Cheruscan leader Arminius. By AD 100, whenTacitus wrote Germania, Germanic tribes had
settled along the Rhine and the Danube (Limes Germanicus), occupying most of the area of
modern Germany; Austria, southern Bavaria and the western Rhineland, however, were Roman
provinces.
[28]

In the 3rd century a number of large West Germanic tribes
emerged: Alemanni, Franks, Chatti, Saxons, Frisii, Sicambri, and Thuringii. Around 260, the
Germanic peoples broke into Roman-controlled lands.
[29]
After an invasion by the Hunsin 375,
and with the decline of Rome from 395, Germanic tribes moved further south-west.
Simultaneously several large tribes formed in what is now Germany and displaced the smaller
Germanic tribes. Large areas (known since the Merovingian period as Austrasia) wereoccupied
by the Franks, and Northern Germany was ruled by the Saxons and Slavs.
[28]

Holy Roman Empire

The Imperial Crown of thekings of the Holy Roman Empire

Map of the Holy Roman Empire of German Nation in 1600 (in today's state borders)
Main article: Holy Roman Empire
On 25 December 800, the Frankish king Charlemagne was crowned emperor and founded
the Carolingian Empire, which wasdivided in 843.
[30]
Frankish rule was extended under
Charlemagne's sons and then later by his grandson 'Louis the German' who was referred to
as Germanicus, but the Carolingian Empire he ruled was the old Germania (to the right of the
Rhine) and this geographical portion of the east Frankish kingdom additionally subsumed an
assemblage of Alamanni, Bavarians, Main Franks, Saxons, Thuringians, Slavic tribes from the
Baltic and Adriatic, and even some Pannonian Avars.
[31]
As such, the Holy Roman Empire
comprised the eastern portion of Charlemagne's original kingdom and emerged as the strongest,
some of this consequent to the aforementioned reign of 'Louis the German' and its extended
cohesion was achieved through the unification efforts of Conrad of Franconia (911-918).
[32]
Its
territory stretched from the Eider River in the north to the Mediterranean coast in the
south.
[30]
Under the reign of the Ottonian emperors (9191024), several major duchies were
consolidated, and the German king Otto I was crowned Holy Roman Emperor of these regions in
962. In 996 Gregory V became the first German Pope, appointed by his cousin Otto III, whom he
shortly after crowned Holy Roman Emperor.
[33]
The Holy Roman Empire absorbed northern Italy
and Burgundy under the reign of the Salian emperors (10241125), although the emperors lost
power through theInvestiture Controversy.
[34]


Martin Luther initiated theProtestant Reformation
Under the Hohenstaufen emperors (11381254), the German princes increased their influence
further south and east into territories inhabited by Slavs, preceding German settlement in these
areas and further east (Ostsiedlung). Northern German towns grew prosperous as members of
the Hanseatic League.
[35]
Starting with the Great Famine in 1315, then the Black Death of 1348
50, the population of Germany declined.
[36]
The edict of the Golden Bull in 1356 provided the
basic constitution of the empire and codified the election of the emperor by seven prince-
electorswho ruled some of the most powerful principalities and archbishoprics.
[37]

Martin Luther publicised The Ninety-Five Theses in 1517 in Wittenberg, challenging the beliefs of
the Roman Catholic Church and initiating the Protestant Reformation. A
separate Lutheran church became the official religion in many German states after 1530.
Religious conflict led to the Thirty Years' War (16181648), which devastated German
lands.
[38]
The population of the German states was reduced by about 30%.
[39]
The Peace of
Westphalia (1648) ended religious warfare among the German states, but the empire was de
facto divided into numerous independent principalities. In the 18th century, the Holy Roman
Empire consisted of approximately 1,800 such territories.
[40]

From 1740 onwards, dualism between the Austrian Habsburg Monarchy and the Kingdom of
Prussia dominated German history. In 1806, the Imperium was overrun and dissolved as a result
of the Napoleonic Wars.
[41]

German Confederation and Empire
Main articles: German Confederation, German Empire and Pan-Germanism

Origin of the Black-Red-Gold:German Revolution of 1848 (Berlin, 19 March 1848)

Foundation of the German Empirein Versailles, 1871. Bismarck is at the center in a white uniform.
Following the fall of Napoleon, the Congress of Vienna convened in 1814 and founded the
German Confederation (Deutscher Bund), a loose league of 39 sovereign states. Disagreement
with restoration politics partly led to the rise ofliberal movements, followed by new measures of
repression by Austrian statesman Metternich. The Zollverein, a tariff union, furthered economic
unity in the German states.
[42]
National and liberal ideals of the French Revolution gained
increasing support among many, especially young, Germans. The Hambach Festival in May
1832 was a main event in support of German unity, freedom and democracy. In the light of
a series of revolutionary movements in Europe, which established a republic in France,
intellectuals and commoners started the Revolutions of 1848 in the German states.
King Frederick William IV of Prussia was offered the title of Emperor, but with a loss of power; he
rejected the crown and the proposed constitution, leading to a temporary setback for the
movement.
[43]

Conflict between King William I of Prussia and the increasingly liberal parliament erupted over
military reforms in 1862, and the king appointed Otto von Bismarck the new Minister President of
Prussia. Bismarck successfully waged war on Denmark in 1864. Prussian victory in the Austro-
Prussian War of 1866 enabled him to create the North German Confederation (Norddeutscher
Bund) and to exclude Austria, formerly the leading German state, from the federation's affairs.
After the French defeat in the Franco-Prussian War, the German Empire was proclaimed in 1871
in Versailles, uniting all scattered parts of Germany except Austria (Kleindeutschland, or "Lesser
Germany").

The German Empire (18711918), with the dominant Kingdom of Prussiain blue
With almost two-thirds of its territory and population, Prussia was the dominating constituent of
the new state; the Hohenzollern King of Prussia ruled as its concurrent Emperor, and Berlin
became its capital.
[43]
In the Grnderzeitperiod following the unification of Germany, Bismarck's
foreign policy asChancellor of Germany under Emperor William I secured Germany's position as
a great nation by forging alliances, isolating France by diplomatic means, and avoiding war. As a
result of the Berlin Conference in 1884 Germany claimed several colonies including German
East Africa, German South-West Africa, Togo, and Cameroon.
[44]
Under Wilhelm II, however,
Germany, like other European powers, took an imperialisticcourse leading to friction with
neighbouring countries. Most alliances in which Germany had previously been involved were not
renewed, and new alliances excluded the country.
[45]

The assassination of Austria's crown prince on 28 June 1914 triggered World War I. Germany,
as part of the Central Powers, suffered defeat against the Allies in one of the bloodiest conflicts
of all time. In total, approximately two million German soldiers were killed in World War
I.
[46]
The German Revolution broke out in November 1918, and Emperor Wilhelm II and all
German ruling princes abdicated. An armistice ended the war on 11 November, and Germany
signed the Treaty of Versailles in June 1919. Germans perceived the treaty as humiliating and
unjust and it was later seen by historians as influential in the rise of Hitler.
[47][48][49][50]

Weimar Republic and the Third Reich
Main articles: Weimar Republic and Nazi Germany
At the beginning of the German Revolution in November 1918, Germany was declared
a republic. However, the struggle for power continued, with radical-leftCommunists seizing power
in Bavaria. The revolution came to an end on 11 August 1919, when the democratic Weimar
Constitution was signed by PresidentFriedrich Ebert.
[51]
After a tumultuous period seeing
the occupation of the Ruhr by Belgian and French troops and the rise of inflation culminating in
thehyperinflation of 1922-23, a debt restructuring plan (the Dawes Plan) and the creation of
a new currency in 1924 ushered in the Golden Twenties, an era of increasing national
confidence, artistic innovation, liberal cultural life and economic prosperity.
[52]
This ended with
the Great Depression of 1929.

Adolf Hitler, Fhrer
[53]
ofNazi Germany
In September 1930 the Nazi Party won just under 18% of the votes in the federal election of
1930. Forming a coalition government proved impossible and Chancellor Heinrich Brning's
government asked President Paul von Hindenburg to grant him Article 48 powers so that he
could enact emergency policies without parliamentary approval. Hindenburg approved the
request and Brning's government pursued a policy of fiscal austerity and deflation which caused
higher unemployment and left Germans, especially the unemployed, with fewer social services.
By 1932 nearly 30% of Germany's workforce was unemployed
[54]
and in the special federal
election of 1932 the Nazi Party won 37% of the vote but could not form a coalition government.
After a series of unsuccessful cabinets, President Paul von Hindenburg appointed Adolf Hitler as
Chancellor of Germany on 30 January 1933.
[55]
On 27 February 1933 the Reichstagbuilding went
up in flames, the Reichstag Fire Decree was passed abrogating basic civil rights and
the Enabling Act of 1933gave Hitler unrestricted legislative power. Hitler established a
centralised totalitarian state and opened Germany's firstconcentration camps in February 1933.
In September 1933 Germans voted to withdraw from the League of Nations. Hitler began to
pursue military rearmament
[56]
and used deficit spending to employ millions of Germans in public
works projects and industry.
In August 1934 the cabinet enacted the "Law Concerning the Highest State Office of the Reich"
which altered the traditional loyalty oath of servicemen so that they affirmed loyalty to Hitler
personally rather than to the office of supreme commander or the state
[57]
and in a special
referendum 90 per cent of the electorate approved merging the presidency with the
chancellorship.
[58]
In 1935 the Nazi regime reintroduced compulsory military service, withdrew
from the Treaty of Versailles and introduced the Nuremberg Lawswhich targeted Jews and other
groups.
Germany reacquired control of the Saar in 1935 and in 1936 sent troops into the Rhineland,
which had been forbidden by the Treaty of Versailles.
[59]
Austriawas annexed in 1938 and despite
the Munich Agreement in September 1938, Germany occupied Czechoslovakia on 15 March
1939. Hitler's government then prepared for the invasion of Poland by signing the Molotov
Ribbentrop pact and planning a fake Polish attack. On 1 September 1939 the
German Wehrmachtlaunched their Invasion of Poland, and swiftly occupied the country along
with the Soviet Red Army. The United Kingdom and France responded to the invasion by
declaring war on Germany, marking the beginning of World War II.
[60]
On 22 July 1940, the
French signed an armstice with the Germans after Nazi troops had occupied most of France. The
British successfully repelled the German attacks of 1940, known as the Battle of Britain, and
continued to fight against theAxis powers. On 22 June 1941, Germany broke the Molotov
Ribbentrop pact and invaded the Soviet Union. At that point, Germany and the other Axis
powerscontrolled most of continental Europe and North Africa. In early 1943, the German troops
begun to retreat from the Soviet Union after their defeat in the Battle of Stalingrad, which is
considered a turning point in the war.
[60]

In September 1943, Germany's ally Italy surrendered, and additional German troops were
needed to defend against Allied forces in Italy. The D-Day invasion of France opened a Western
front in the war and despite a German counter offensive Allied forces had entered Germany by
1945. Following Hilter's suicide and the Battle of Berlin, the German armed forces
surrendered on 8 May 1945.
[61]
The war was humanity's bloodiest conflict and caused the deaths
of around40 million people in Europe alone.
[62]
German army war casualties were between 3.25
million and 5.3 million soldiers,
[63]
and between 1 and 3 million German civilians were killed.
[64][65]

In what later became known as The Holocaust, the Nazi regime enacted policies which targeted
minorities as well as political and religious opposition. Over 10 million civilians were executed by
the Nazis during the Holocaust, including six million Jews, between 220,000 and
1,500,000 Romani people, 275,000 persons with mental and/or physical disabilities, thousands
of Jehovah's Witnesses, thousands of homosexuals, and hundreds of thousands of members of
the political and religious opposition.
[66]
Six million Ukrainians and Poles and an estimated 2.8
million Soviet war prisoners were also killed by the Nazi regime.

Berlin in ruins after World War II.
Losing the war resulted in territorial losses for Germany, the expulsion of millions of ethnic
Germans from the former eastern territories of Germany and formerly occupied countries.
Germany, like many of the countries it had occupied,
[67]
suffered mass rape
[68]
and the destruction
of numerous cities and cultural heritage due to bombing and fighting during the war. After World
War II, some Nazis, former Nazis and others were tried for war crimes, including crimes related
to the Holocaust, at the Nuremberg trials.
[69]

East and West Germany
Main article: History of Germany (19451990)

Occupation zones in Germany, 1947. The territories east of the Oder-Neisse line, under Polish and Soviet de
jure administration and de factoannexation, are shown as white, as is the detached Saar protectorate.
After the surrender of Germany, the remaining German territory and Berlin were partitioned by
the Allies into four military occupation zones. Together, these zones accepted more than 6.5
million of the ethnic Germans expelled from eastern areas.
[70]
The western sectors, controlled by
France, the United Kingdom, and the United States, were merged on 23 May 1949 to form
theFederal Republic of Germany (Bundesrepublik Deutschland); on 7 October 1949, the Soviet
Zone became the German Democratic Republic (Deutsche Demokratische Republik, or DDR).
They were informally known as "West Germany" and "East Germany". East Germany selected
East Berlin as its capital, while West Germany chose Bonn as a provisional capital, to emphasise
its stance that the two-state solution was an artificial and temporary status quo.
[71]
TheFederal
Republic of Germany became a major recipient of reconstruction aid under the Marshall Plan.
West Germany, established as a federal parliamentary republic with a "social market economy",
was allied with the United States, the UK and France. Konrad Adenauer was elected the
first Federal Chancellor (Bundeskanzler) of Germany in 1949 and remained in office until 1963.
Under his and Ludwig Erhard's leadership, the country enjoyed prolonged economic growth
beginning in the early 1950s, that became famous as the "economic miracle"
(German:Wirtschaftswunder). West Germany joined NATO in 1955 and was a founding member
of the European Economic Community in 1957.
East Germany was an Eastern Bloc state under political and military control by the USSR via the
latter's occupation forces and the Warsaw Pact. Though East Germany claimed to be a
democracy, political power was exercised solely by leading members (Politbro) of the
communist-controlled Socialist Unity Party of Germany (SED), supported by the Stasi, an
immense secret service,
[72]
and a variety of sub-organisations controlling every aspect of society.
A Soviet-stylecommand economy was set up; the GDR later became a Comecon state.
[73]


The Berlin Wall in front of theBrandenburg Gate shortly before its fall in 1989. Today the Gate is often regarded
as Germany's main nationallandmark.
While East German propaganda was based on the benefits of the GDR's social programmes and
the alleged constant threat of a West German invasion, many of its citizens looked to the West
for freedom and prosperity.
[74]
The Berlin Wall, built in 1961 to stop East Germans from escaping
to West Germany, became a symbol of the Cold War,
[43]
hence its fall in 1989, following
democratic reforms in Poland and Hungary, became a symbol of the Fall of Communism,German
Reunification and Die Wende.
Tensions between East and West Germany were reduced in the early 1970s by Chancellor Willy
Brandt's Ostpolitik. In summer 1989, Hungary decided to dismantle the Iron Curtain and open the
borders, causing the emigration of thousands of East Germans to West Germany via Hungary.
This had devastating effects on the GDR, where regularmass demonstrations received
increasing support. The East German authorities unexpectedly eased the border restrictions,
allowing East German citizens to travel to the West; originally intended to help retain East
Germany as a state, the opening of the border actually led to an acceleration of
the Wende reform process. This culminated in the Two Plus Four Treaty a year later on 12
September 1990, under which the four occupying powers renounced their rights under
the Instrument of Surrender, and Germany regained full sovereignty. This permitted German
reunification on 3 October 1990, with the accession of the five re-established states of the former
GDR (new states or "neue Lnder").
[43]

German reunification and the EU

The German Unity Flag, raised outside the Reichstag building on 3 October 1990 as a national memorial
to German reunification. The Reichstag is the meeting place of the Bundestag, the German parliament.
Main articles: German reunification and History of Germany since 1990
Based on the Berlin/Bonn Act, adopted on 10 March 1994, Berlin once again became the capital
of the reunified Germany, while Bonn obtained the unique status of a Bundesstadt (federal city)
retaining some federal ministries.
[75]
The relocation of the government was completed in 1999.
[76]

Since reunification, Germany has taken a more active role in the European Union and NATO.
Germany sent a peacekeeping force to secure stability in the Balkans and sent a force
of German troops to Afghanistan as part of a NATO effort to provide security in that country after
the ousting of the Taliban.
[77]
These deployments were controversial since, after the war,
Germany was bound by domestic law only to deploy troops for defence roles.
[78]
In 2005, Angela
Merkel became the first female Chancellor of Germany as the leader of a grand
coalition.
[43]
Germany hosted the 2007 G8 summit in Heiligendamm, Mecklenburg. In 2009,
a liberal-conservative coalition under Merkelassumed leadership of the country. In 2013, another
grand coalition was established in a Third Merkel cabinet.
Geography

Topographic map
Main article: Geography of Germany
Germany is in Western and Central Europe, with Denmark bordering to the north, Poland and
the Czech Republic to the east, Austria and Switzerland to the south, France and Luxembourg to
the southwest, and Belgium and the Netherlandsto the northwest. It lies mostly between
latitudes 47 and 55 N (the tip of Sylt is just north of 55), and longitudes 5 and16 E. The
territory covers 357,021 km
2
(137,847 sq mi), consisting of 349,223 km
2
(134,836 sq mi) of land
and 7,798 km
2
(3,011 sq mi) of water. It is the seventh largest country by area in Europe and
the 62nd largest in the world.
[4]

Elevation ranges from the mountains of the Alps (highest point: the Zugspitze at 2,962 metres or
9,718 feet) in the south to the shores of the North Sea (Nordsee) in the northwest and the Baltic
Sea (Ostsee) in the northeast. The forested uplands of central Germany and the lowlands of
northern Germany (lowest point: Wilstermarsch at 3.54 metres or 11.6 feet below sea level) are
traversed by such major rivers as the Rhine, Danube and Elbe. Glaciers are found in the Alpine
region, but are experiencing deglaciation. Significant natural resources are iron ore, coal, potash,
timber,lignite, uranium, copper, natural gas, salt, nickel, arable land and water.
[4]

Climate

Steep coast of Dar, Western Pomerania - typical of the Balticcoastal landscape in northern Germany
Most of Germany has a temperate seasonal climate in which humid westerly winds predominate.
The country is situated in between the oceanic Western European and the continental Eastern
European climate. The climate is moderated by the North Atlantic Drift, the northern extension of
the Gulf Stream. This warmer water affects the areas bordering the North Sea; consequently in
the northwest and the north the climate is oceanic. Germany gets an average of 789 mm
(31 in) precipitation per year. Rainfall occurs year-round, with no obligatory dry season. Winters
are mild and summers tend to be warm, temperatures can exceed 30 C (86 F).
[79]

The east has a more continental climate; winters can be very cold and summers very warm, and
longer dry periods can occur. Central and southern Germany are transition regions which vary
from moderately oceanic to continental. In addition to the maritime and continental climates that
predominate over most of the country, the Alpine regions in the extreme south and, to a lesser
degree, some areas of the Central German Uplands have a mountain climate, characterised by
lower temperatures and greater precipitation.
[79]

Biodiversity

The golden eagle is a protected bird of prey.
The territory of Germany can be subdivided into two ecoregions: European-Mediterranean
montane mixed forests and Northeast-Atlantic shelf marine.
[80]
As of 2008 the majority of
Germany is covered by either arable land (34%) or forest andwoodland (30.1%); only 13.4% of
the area consists of permanent pastures, 11.8% is covered by settlements and streets.
[81]

Plants and animals are those generally common to middle Europe. Beeches, oaks, and other
deciduous trees constitute one-third of the forests; conifers are increasing as a result of
reforestation. Spruce and fir trees predominate in the upper mountains, while pine and larch are
found in sandy soil. There are many species of ferns, flowers, fungi, and mosses. Wild animals
include deer, wild boar, mouflon, fox, badger, hare, and small numbers of
beavers.
[82]
The blue cornflower was once a German national symbol.
[83]

The 14 national parks in Germany include the Jasmund National Park, the Vorpommern Lagoon
Area National Park, the Mritz National Park, the Wadden Sea National Parks, the Harz National
Park, the Hainich National Park, the Saxon Switzerland National Park, the Bavarian Forest
National Park and the Berchtesgaden National Park. In addition, there are 14 Biosphere
Reserves, as well as 98 nature parks.
More than 400 registered zoos and animal parks operate in Germany, which is believed to be the
largest number in any country.
[84]
The Berlin Zoo opened in 1844 is the oldest zoo in Germany,
and presents the most comprehensive collection of species in the world.
[85]


Politics
Main article: Politics of Germany
See also: Judiciary of Germany and Law enforcement in Germany

Political system of Germany

The Reichstag building in Berlin is the site of the German parliament (Bundestag)
Germany is a federal, parliamentary, representative democraticrepublic. The German political
system operates under a framework laid out in the 1949 constitutional document known as
the Grundgesetz (Basic Law). Amendments generally require a two-thirds majority of both
chambers of parliament; the fundamental principles of the constitution, as expressed in the
articles guaranteeing human dignity, the separation of powers, the federal structure, and the rule
of law are valid in perpetuity.
[86]

The president is the head of state and invested primarily with representative responsibilities and
powers. He is elected by the Bundesversammlung (federal convention), an institution consisting
of the members of the Bundestag and an equal number of state delegates. The second-highest
official in the German order of precedence is the Bundestagsprsident (President of
the Bundestag), who is elected by the Bundestagand responsible for overseeing the daily
sessions of the body.

Joachim Gauck
President since 2012
Angela Merkel
Chancellor since 2005
The third-highest official and the head of government is the Chancellor, who is appointed by
the Bundesprsident after being elected by the Bundestag.
[43]
The chancellor, currently Angela
Merkel, is the head of government and exercisesexecutive power, similar to the role of a Prime
Minister in other parliamentary democracies.
Federal legislative power is vested in the parliament consisting of the Bundestag (Federal Diet)
and Bundesrat(Federal Council), which together form the legislative body. The Bundestag is
elected through direct elections, byproportional representation (mixed-member).
[4]
The members
of the Bundesrat represent the governments of the sixteen federated states and are members of
the state cabinets.
[43]

Since 1949, the party system has been dominated by the Christian Democratic Union and
the Social Democratic Party of Germany. So far every chancellor has been a member of one of
these parties. However, the smaller liberal Free Democratic Party (which had members in the
Bundestag from 1949 to 2013) and the Alliance '90/The Greens (which has had seats in
parliament since 1983) have also played important roles.
[87]

Minor parties such as The Left, Free Voters and the Pirate Party are represented in some state
parliaments.

Law

German state police officers, with a typical German police car
Main article: Law of Germany
Germany has a civil law system based on Roman law with some references to Germanic law.
TheBundesverfassungsgericht (Federal Constitutional Court) is the German Supreme Court
responsible for constitutional matters, with power of judicial review.
[43][88]
Germany's supreme
court system, called Oberste Gerichtshfe des Bundes, is specialised: for civil and criminal
cases, the highest court of appeal is the inquisitorial Federal Court of Justice, and for other
affairs the courts are the Federal Labour Court, the Federal Social Court, the Federal Finance
Court and the Federal Administrative Court. The Vlkerstrafgesetzbuch regulates the
consequences of crimes against humanity, genocide and war crimes, and gives German
courts universal jurisdiction in some circumstances.
[89]

Criminal and private laws are codified on the national level in the Strafgesetzbuch and
the Brgerliches Gesetzbuchrespectively. The German penal system is aimed towards
rehabilitation of the criminal and the protection of the general public.
[90]
Except for petty crimes,
which are tried before a single professional judge, and serious political crimes, all charges are
tried before mixed tribunals on which lay judges (Schffen) sit side by side with professional
judges.
[91][92]

Many of the fundamental matters of administrative law remain in the jurisdiction of the states,
though most states base their own laws in that area on the
1976Verwaltungsverfahrensgesetz (Administrative Proceedings Act) covering important points of
administrative law. The Oberverwaltungsgerichte are the highest level of administrative
jurisdiction concerning the state administrations, unless the question of law concerns federal law
or state law identical to federal law. In such cases, final appeal to the Federal Administrative
Court is possible.
Constituent states
Main article: States of Germany
Germany comprises sixteen states which are collectively referred to as Lnder.
[93]
Each state has
its own state constitution
[94]
and is largely autonomous in regard to its internal organisation.
Because of differences in size and population the subdivisions of these states vary, especially as
between city states(Stadtstaaten) and states with larger territories (Flchenlnder). For regional
administrative purposes five states, namely Baden-Wrttemberg, Bavaria, Hesse, North Rhine-
Westphalia and Saxony, consist of a total of 22 Government Districts (Regierungsbezirke). As of
2009 Germany is divided into 403 districts (Kreise) at a municipal level; these consist of 301 rural
districts and 102 urban districts.
[95]


Lower Saxony
Bremen
Hamburg
Mecklenburg-
Vorpommern
Saxony-
Anhalt
Saxony
Brandenburg
Berlin
Thuringia
Hesse
North Rhine-
Westphalia
Rhineland-
Palatinate
Bavaria
Baden-
Wrttemberg
Saarland
Schleswig-Holstein
State Capital Area (km) Population
[96]

Baden-Wrttemberg Stuttgart 35,752 10,569,100
Bavaria Munich 70,549 12,519,600
Berlin Berlin 892 3,375,200
Brandenburg Potsdam 29,477 2,449,500
Bremen Bremen 404 654,800
Hamburg Hamburg 755 1,734,300
Hesse Wiesbaden 21,115 6,016,500
Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Schwerin 23,174 1,600,300
Lower Saxony Hanover 47,618 7,779,000
North Rhine-Westphalia Dsseldorf 34,043 17,554,300
Rhineland-Palatinate Mainz 19,847 3,990,300
Saarland Saarbrcken 2,569 994,300
Saxony Dresden 18,416 4,050,200
Saxony-Anhalt Magdeburg 20,445 2,259,400
Schleswig-Holstein Kiel 15,763 2,806,500
Thuringia Erfurt 16,172 2,170,500

Foreign relations
Main article: Foreign relations of Germany

Chancellor Angela Merkel hosting the G8 summit in Heiligendamm
Germany has a network of 229 diplomatic missions abroad
[97]
and maintains relations with more
than 190 countries.
[98]
As of 2011 it is the largest contributor to the budget of the European Union
(providing 20%)
[99]
and the third largest contributor to the UN (providing 8%).
[100]
Germany is a
member of NATO, the Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the
G8, the G20, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). It has played a leading
role in the European Union since its inception and has maintained a strong alliance with
France since the end of World War II. Germany seeks to advance the creation of a more unified
European political, defence, and security apparatus.
[101][102]

The development policy of the Federal Republic of Germany is an independent area of German
foreign policy. It is formulated by the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and
Development (BMZ) and carried out by the implementing organisations. The German
government sees development policy as a joint responsibility of the international community.
[103]
It
is the world's third biggest aid donor after the United States and France.
[104][105]

During the Cold War, Germany's partition by the Iron Curtain made it a symbol of EastWest
tensions and a political battleground in Europe. However, Willy Brandt's Ostpolitik was a key
factor in the dtente of the 1970s.
[106]
In 1999, Chancellor Gerhard Schrder's government
defined a new basis for German foreign policy by taking part in the NATO decisions surrounding
the Kosovo War and by sending German troops into combat for the first time since World War
II.
[107]
The governments of Germany and the United States are close political allies.
[43]
The
1948 Marshall Plan and strong cultural ties have crafted a strong bond between the two
countries, although Schrder's vocal opposition to the Iraq War suggested the end
of Atlanticism and a relative cooling of German-American relations.
[108]
The two countries are also
economically interdependent: 8.8% of German exports are US-bound and 6.6% of German
imports originate from the US.
[109]

Military
Main article: Bundeswehr

The Eurofighter Typhoon is part of the Luftwaffe
Germany's military, the Bundeswehr, is organised into Heer (Army), Marine (Navy), Luftwaffe (Air
Force), Bundeswehr Joint Medical Service and Streitkrftebasis (Joint Support Service)
branches. The role of the Bundeswehr is described in the Constitution of Germany (Art. 87a) as
absolutely defensive only. Its only active role before 1990 was theKatastropheneinsatz (disaster
control). Within the Bundeswehr, it helped after natural disasters both in Germany and abroad.
After 1990, the international situation changed from East-West confrontation to one of general
uncertainty and instability. Today, after a ruling of the Federal Constitutional Court in 1994 the
term "defense" has been defined to not only include protection of the borders of Germany, but
also crisis reaction and conflict prevention, or more broadly as guarding the security of Germany
anywhere in the world.

Leopard 2 tanks of the German Army
In 2011, military spending was an estimated 1.3% of the country's GDP, which is low in a ranking
of all countries; in absolute terms, German military expenditure is the 9th highest in the
world.
[110]
In peacetime, the Bundeswehr is commanded by the Minister of Defence. If Germany
went to war, which according to the constitution is allowed only for defensive purposes, the
Chancellor would become commander-in-chief of the Bundeswehr.
[111]

As of March 2012 the Bundeswehr employs 183,000 professional soldiers and 17,000
volunteers.
[112]
The German government plans to reduce the number of soldiers to 170,000
professionals and up to 15,000 short-term volunteers (voluntary military service).
[113]
Reservists
are available to the Armed Forces and participate in defence exercises and deployments
abroad.
[113]
As of April 2011, the German military had about 6,900 troops stationed in foreign
countries as part of international peacekeeping forces, including about 4,900 Bundeswehr troops
in the NATO-led ISAF force in Afghanistan and Uzbekistan, 1,150 German soldiers in Kosovo,
and 300 troops with UNIFIL in Lebanon.
[114]

Until 2011, military service was compulsory for men at age 18, and conscripts served six-month
tours of duty; conscientious objectors could instead opt for an equal length of Zivildienst (civilian
service), or a six-year commitment to (voluntary) emergency services like afire department or
the Red Cross. On 1 July 2011 conscription was officially suspended and replaced with a
voluntary service.
[115][116]
Since 2001 women may serve in all functions of service without
restriction, but they have not been subject to conscription. There are presently some 17,500
women on active duty and a number of female reservists.
[117]

Economy
Main article: Economy of Germany
See also: Mittelstand

Frankfurt is Germany's financial capital (New ECB HQ pictured)

The labour productivity level of Germany is one of the highest inEurope. OECD, 2012

A Mercedes-Benz car. Germany was the world's leading exporter of goods from 2003 to 2008.
[118]


Germany is part of a monetary union, the eurozone (dark blue), and of the EU single market.
Germany has a social market economy with a highly skilled labour force, a large capital stock, a
low level of corruption,
[119]
and a high level of innovation.
[120]
It has the largest and most powerful
national economy in Europe, the fourth largest by nominal GDP in the world,
[121]
the fifth largest
by PPP,
[122]
and was the biggest net contributor to the EU budget in 2011.
[123]
The service
sector contributes approximately 71% of the total GDP, industry 28%, and agriculture 1%.
[4]
The
official average national unemployment rate in April 2014 was 6.8%.
[124]
However, the official
average national unemployment rate also includes people with a part-time job that are looking for
a full-time job.
[125]
The unofficial average national unemployment rate in 2013 was 5.3%.
[4]

Germany is an advocate of closer European economic and political integration. Its commercial
policies are increasingly determined by agreements among European Union (EU) members and
by EU legislation. Germany introduced the common European currency, the euro, on 1 January
2002.
[126][127]
Its monetary policy is set by the European Central Bank, which is headquartered in
Frankfurt. Two decades after German reunification, standards of living and per capita incomes
remain significantly higher in the states of the former West Germany than in the former
East.
[128]
The modernisation and integration of the eastern German economy is a long-term
process scheduled to last until the year 2019, with annual transfers from west to east amounting
to roughly $80 billion.
[129]
In January 2009 the German government approved a 50 billion
economic stimulus plan to protect several sectors from a downturn and a subsequent rise in
unemployment rates.
[130]

Around two thirds of the world's leading trade fairs take place in Germany.
[131]

Of the world's 500 largest stock-market-listed companies measured by revenue in 2010,
the Fortune Global 500, 37 are headquartered in Germany. 30 Germany-based companies are
included in the DAX, the German stock market index. Well-known global brands are Mercedes-
Benz, BMW, SAP, Siemens, Volkswagen, Adidas, Audi, Allianz, Porsche,Bayer, Bosch,
and Nivea.
[132]
Germany is recognised for its specialised small and medium enterprises. Around
1,000 of these companies are global market leaders in their segment and are labelled hidden
champions.
[133]

The list includes the largest German companies by revenue in 2011:
Rank
[134]
Name Headquarters
Revenue
(Mil. )
Profit
(Mil. )
Employees
(World)
1. Volkswagen AG Wolfsburg 159,000 15,800 502,000
2. E.ON SE Dsseldorf 113,000 1,900 79,000
3. Daimler AG Stuttgart 107,000 6,000 271,000
4. Siemens AG Berlin, Mnchen 74,000 6,300 360,000
5. BASF SE Ludwigshafen am Rhein 73,000 6,600 111,000
6. BMW AG Mnchen 69,000 4,900 100,000
7. Metro AG Dsseldorf 67,000 740 288,000
8. Schwarz Gruppe (Lidl/Kaufland) Neckarsulm 63,000 N/A 315,000
9. Deutsche Telekom AG Bonn 59,000 670 235,000
10. Deutsche Post AG Bonn 53,000 1,300 471,000
Allianz SE Mnchen 104,000 2,800 141,000
Rank
[134]
Name Headquarters
Revenue
(Mil. )
Profit
(Mil. )
Employees
(World)
Deutsche Bank AG Frankfurt am Main 21,600 4,300 101,000
Infrastructure
Main articles: Transport in Germany and Energy in Germany

The ICE 3 in Cologne railway station
With its central position in Europe, Germany is a transport hub for the continent. This is reflected
in one of the worlds largest and most sophisticated transportation systems.
[135]
Like its
neighbours in Western Europe, Germany's road network is amongst the densest in the
world.
[136]
The motorway (Autobahn) network ranks as the third-largest worldwide in length and is
known for its lack of a general speed limit.
[137]
Germany has established a polycentric network
of high-speed trains. The InterCityExpress or ICE network of the Deutsche Bahn serves major
German cities as well as destinations in neighbouring countries with speeds up to 300 kph
(186 mph).
[138]
The largest German airports are Frankfurt Airport and Munich Airport, both hubs
of Lufthansa, while Air Berlin has hubs at Berlin Tegel andDsseldorf. Other major airports
include Berlin Schnefeld, Hamburg, Cologne/Bonn and Leipzig/Halle. Both airports in Berlin will
be consolidated at a site adjacent to Berlin Schnefeld, which will become Berlin Brandenburg
Airport.
[139]
The Port of Hamburg is one of the top twenty largest container ports in the world.
[140]

In 2008, Germany was the world's sixth-largest consumer of energy,
[141]
and 60% of its primary
energy was imported.
[142]
Government policy promotes energy conservation and renewable
energy commercialisation. Energy efficiency has been improving since the early 1970s; the
government aims to meet the country's electricity demands using 40% renewable sources by
2020 and 100% by 2050.
[143]
In 2010, energy sources were: oil (33.7%); coal, including lignite
(22.9%); natural gas (21.8%); nuclear (10.8%); hydro-electric and wind power (1.5%); and other
renewable sources (7.9%).
[144]
In 2000, the government and the nuclear power industry agreed to
phase out all nuclear power plants by 2021.
[145]
Germany is committed to theKyoto protocol and
several other treaties promoting biodiversity, low emission standards, recycling, and the use of
renewable energy, and supports sustainable development at a global level.
[146]
The German
government has initiated wide-ranging emission reduction activities and the country's overall
emissions are falling.
[147]
Nevertheless the country's greenhouse gas emissions were the highest
in the EU in 2010, while it is also the largest country by population and economical
output.
[148]
The German energy transition (German: Energiewende) is the globally recognised
move to a sustainable economy by means ofrenewable energy, energy
efficiency and sustainable development. The final goal is the abolition of coal and other non-
renewable energy sources.
[149]
With theWendelstein 7-X experiment in Greifswald, Germany is
also a leading country in the research of fusion power.
Science and technology
Main articles: Science and technology in Germany and List of German inventors and discoverers

Albert Einstein
Germany's achievements in the sciences have been significant, and research and
development efforts form an integral part of the economy.
[150]
The Nobel Prize has been awarded
to 104 German laureates.
[151]
For most of the 20th century, German laureates had more awards
than those of any other nation, especially in the sciences (physics, chemistry, and physiology or
medicine).
[152][153]

Notable German physicists before the 20th century include Hermann von Helmholtz, Joseph von
Fraunhofer and Gabriel Daniel Fahrenheit, among others. Albert Einstein introduced the relativity
theories for light and gravity in 1905 and 1915 respectively, which remain mainstream theories in
physics to this day. Along with Max Planck, he was instrumental in the introduction ofquantum
mechanics, in which Werner Heisenberg and Max Born later made major
contributions.
[154]
Wilhelm Rntgendiscovered X-rays and was the first winner of the Nobel Prize
in Physics in 1901.
[155]
Otto Hahn was a pioneer in the fields
ofradioactivity and radiochemistry and discovered nuclear fission,
[156]
while Ferdinand
Cohn and Robert Koch were founders ofmicrobiology. Numerous mathematicians were born in
Germany, including Carl Friedrich Gauss, David Hilbert, Bernhard Riemann, Gottfried
Leibniz, Karl Weierstrass, Hermann Weyl and Felix Klein. Research institutions in Germany
include the Max Planck Society, the Helmholtz Association and the Fraunhofer Society.
The Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize is granted to ten scientists and academics every year. With a
maximum of 2.5 million per award it is one of highest endowed research prizes in the world.
[157]

Germany has been the home of many famous inventors and engineers, such as Johannes
Gutenberg, credited with the invention of movable type printing in Europe; Hans Geiger, the
creator of the Geiger counter; and Konrad Zuse, who built the first fully automatic digital
computer.
[158]
German inventors, engineers and industrialists such as Count Ferdinand von
Zeppelin, Otto Lilienthal, Gottlieb Daimler, Rudolf Diesel, Hugo Junkers and Karl Benz helped
shape modern automotive and air transportation technology.
[159]
Aerospace engineer Wernher
von Braun developed the first space rocket and later on was a prominent member of NASA and
developed the Saturn V Moon rocket, which paved the way for the success of the US Apollo
programme. Heinrich Rudolf Hertz's work in the domain of electromagnetic radiation was pivotal
to the development of modern telecommunication.
[160]

Germany is one of the leading countries in developing and using green technologies. Companies
specialising in green technology have an estimated turnover of 200 billion. Key sectors of
Germany's green technology industry are power generation, sustainable mobility, material
efficiency, energy efficiency, waste management and recycling, and sustainable water
management.
[161]

Tourism

A church in the Berchtesgadenregion of Bavaria. Bavaria is the most popular German state for international
tourism.
Main article: Tourism in Germany
See also: List of museums in Germany
Germany is the seventh most visited country in the world,
[162][163]
with a total of 407.26 million
overnights during 2012.
[164]
This number includes 68.83 million nights by foreign visitors. In 2012,
over 30.4 million international tourists arrived in Germany, bringing over US$38 billion in
international tourism receipts to the country.
[165]
Additionally, more than 30% of Germans spend
their holiday in their own country, with the biggest share going to Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.
According to Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Reports, Germany is rated as one of the
safest travel destinations worldwide. The official body for tourism in Germany is the German
National Tourist Board (GNTB). Domestic and international travel and tourism combined directly
contribute over EUR43.2 billion to German GDP. Including indirect and induced impacts, the
industry contributes 4.5% of German GDP and supports 2 million jobs (4.8% of total
employment).
[166]

There are 39 UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Germany, including the famous old towns
of Regensburg, Bamberg and Lbeck. Germany's most visited landmarks by visitors
are: Cologne Cathedral (with 6 million visitors per year), Berlin Bundestag (2.7
million), Hofbruhaus Munich (1.8 million), Heidelberg Castle, Neuschwanstein Castle, Dresden
Zwinger, Fernsehturm Berlin and Aachen Cathedral. The Europa-Park near Freiburg is Europe's
second most popular theme park resort, following Disneyland Paris. The most visited
protected nature parks are the Pomeranian Lagoons, Saxon Switzerland, Bavarian
Forest,Jasmund, Wadden Sea, Berchtesgaden Alps, Harz and Mainau Island.
Germany is well known for its diverse tourist routes, such as the Romantic Road, the German
Wine Route, the Castle Road, the Timber-Frame Road and theGerman Avenue Road. The
common German term for an old town is Altstadt.
Demographics
Main articles: Demographics of Germany, Germans, Social issues in Germany and List of cities
in Germany by population

Growth of the German population since 1800
With a population of 80.2 million according to the May 2011 census,
[8]
Germany is the most
populous country in the European Union, the second most populous country in Europe
after Russia, and ranks as the 16th most populous country in the world.
[167]
Its population
density stands at 225 inhabitants per square kilometre. The overall life expectancy in Germany at
birth is 80.19 years (77.93 years for males and 82.58 years for females).
[4]
The fertility rate of
1.41 children born per woman (2011 estimates), or 8.33 births per 1000 inhabitants, is one of
the lowest in the world.
[4]
Since the 1970s, Germany's death rate has continuously exceeded
its birth rate.
[168]
The Federal Statistical Office of Germany has forecast that the population could
shrink to between 65 and 70 million by 2060 (depending on the level of net
migration).
[169]
However, such forecasts have often been proven wrong in the past, and Germany
is currently witnessing increased birth rates
[170]
and migration rates since the beginning of the
2010s. It is notably experiencing a strong increase in the number of well-educated
migrants.
[171][172]
In 2012, 300,000 more immigrants than emigrants were reported in Germany.
[173]

National minorities
Four sizable groups of people are referred to as "national minorities" (nationale Minderheiten)
because they have lived in their respective regions for
centuries:Danes, Frisians, Roma and Sinti, and Sorbs.
[174]
There is a Danish minority (about
50,000, according to government sources) in the northern-most state ofSchleswig-
Holstein.
[174]
Eastern and Northern Frisians live at Schleswig-Holstein's western coast, and in the
north-western part of Lower Saxony. They are part of a wider community (Frisia) stretching from
Germany to the northern Netherlands. The Sorbs, a Slavic people with about 60,000 members
(according to government sources), are in the Lusatia region
of Saxony and Brandenburg.
[174]
They are the last remnants of the Slavs that lived in central and
eastern Germany since the 7th century to have kept their traditions and not been completely
integrated into the wider German nation through Germanization.
Immigrant population
Main article: Immigration to Germany
See also: Blue Card (European Union)

A person like Simone Hauswald, who has a German and a Korean parent, is considered a "person with
immigrant background" in German statistics, even if born in Germany. Another statistical term that is used to
classify individuals with one German and one Asian parent is German Asianor Eurasian.
Germans by nationality make up 92.3% of the population of Germany as of 9 May 2011.
[8]
As of
2011, about six million foreign citizens (7.7% of the population) were registered in
Germany.
[8]
Regarding ethnic background, 20%
[175]
of the country's residents, or more than 16
million people, were of foreign or partially foreign descent in 2009 (including persons descending
or partially descending from ethnic German repatriates), 96% of whom lived in the former West
Germany or Berlin.
[176]
In 2010, 2.3 million families with children under 18 years were living in
Germany, in which at least one parent had foreign roots. They represented 29% of the total of
8.1 million families with minor children. Compared with 2005 the year when the microcensus
started to collect detailed information on the population with a migrant background the
proportion of migrant families has risen by 2 percentage points.
[177]

Most of the families with a migrant background live in the western part of Germany. In 2010, the
proportion of migrant families in all families was 32% in the pre-unification territory of the Federal
Republic. This figure was more than double that in the new Lnder (including Berlin) where it
stood at 15%.
[177]
Families with a migrant background more often have three or more minor
children in the household than families without a migrant background. In 2010, about 15% of the
families with a migrant background contained three or more minor children, as compared with
just 9% of the families without a migrant background.
[177]

The United Nations Population Fund lists Germany as host to the third-highest number of
international migrants worldwide, about 5% or 10 million of all 191 million migrants.
[178]
As a
consequence of restrictions to Germany's formerly rather unrestricted laws on asylum and
immigration, the number of immigrants seeking asylum or claiming German ethnicity (mostly from
the former Soviet Union) has been declining steadily since 2000.
[179]
In 2009, 20% of the
population had immigrant roots, the highest since 1945.
[180]
As of 2008, the largest national group
was from Turkey (2.5 million), followed by Italy (776,000) and Poland (687,000).
[181]
Since 1987,
around 3 million ethnic Germans, mostly from the former eastern bloc, have taken advantage of
their right of return and emigrated to Germany.
[182]
Large numbers of people with full or significant
German ancestry are found in the United States,
[183]
Brazil,
[184]
Argentina
[185]
and Canada.
[186]
Most
ethnic minorities (especially those of non-European origin) reside in large urban areas
like Berlin, Hamburg, Frankfurt Rhine-Main, Rhine-Ruhr, Rhine-Neckar and Munich. The
percentage of non-Germans and immigrants is rather low in rural areas and small towns,
especially in the East German states of the former GDR territory.
Germany is home to the third-highest number of international migrants worldwide.
[187]

Urbanization
See also: List of cities and towns in Germany and List of cities in Germany by population
Germany has a number of large cities. There are 11 officially recognised metropolitan regions in
Germany and since 2006, 34 cities were identified which can be called a regiopolis. The
largest conurbation is the Rhine-Ruhr region (11.7 million in 2008), including Dsseldorf (the
capital of North Rhine-Westphalia),Cologne, Bonn, Dortmund, Essen, Duisburg, and Bochum.
[188]




V
T
E
Largest cities or towns of Germany
List of statistical offices in Germany 24 December 2010

Rank Name State Pop. Rank Name State Pop.


Berlin

Hamburg
1 Berlin Berlin 3,471,756 11 Dresden Saxony 523,058

Munich

Cologne
2 Hamburg Hamburg 1,786,448 12 Leipzig Saxony 522,883
3 Munich Bavaria 1,353,186 13 Hannover Lower Saxony 522,686
4 Cologne North Rhine-Westphalia 1,007,119 14 Nuremberg Bavaria 505,664
5 Frankfurt Hesse 688,664 15 Duisburg North Rhine-Westphalia 489,599
6 Stuttgart Baden-Wrttemberg 606,588 16 Bochum North Rhine-Westphalia 374,737
7 Dsseldorf North Rhine-Westphalia 598,786 17 Wuppertal North Rhine-Westphalia 349,721
8 Dortmund North Rhine-Westphalia 580,444 18 Bonn North Rhine-Westphalia 324,899
9 Essen North Rhine-Westphalia 574,635 19 Bielefeld North Rhine-Westphalia 323,270
10 Bremen Bremen (state) 547,340 20 Mannheim Baden-Wrttemberg 313,174
Religion

The Catholic Cologne Cathedral at the Rhine river is aUNESCO World Heritage Site

Berlin Cathedral, one of the main Evangelical cathedrals in Germany
Main article: Religion in Germany
According to the latest official nationwide census of 2011, Christianity is the largest religion in
Germany, claiming 66.8% of the total population.
[189]
The census provided detailed statistics
regarding religion in the Federal Republic. Results relative to the total population of Germany
were as follows: 30.8% declared themselves as Roman Catholics; 30.3% as Protestants as
represented by the Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD); 5.7% were reported to be other
Christians (including also Protestants outside the EKD).
[190]
Newer statistics claim that the number
of Christians in Germany has decreased to 62%.
[191]
Geographically, Protestantism is
concentrated in the northern, central and eastern part of the country, while Roman Catholicism is
concentrated in the south and west. People with no and other religions are concentrated in the
former East Germany and major metropolitan areas.
[192]

Islam is the second largest religion in the country. In the 2011 census only 1.9% declared
themselves to be Muslims,
[190]
however other sources estimate 3.8 to 4.3 million adherents (4.6%
to 5.2%).
[193]
Of these roughly 4 million Muslims, most areSunnis and Alevites from Turkey, but
there are a small number of Shi'ites and other denominations.
[193]
German Muslims, a large
portion of whom are of Turkish origin, lack full official state recognition of their religious
community.
[192]

Other religions comprising less than 1% of Germany's population
[190]
are Buddhism with 250,000
and Judaism with around 200,000 adherents (both roughly 0.3%). Hinduism has some 100,000
adherents (0.1%). All other religious communities in Germany have fewer than 50,000 adherents
each.
[194]
Germany has Europe's third largest Jewish population (after France and the United
Kingdom).
[195]
Approximately 50% of the Buddhists in Germany are Asian immigrants.
[196]

The remaining 32%-35% lack a membership in any religious body-a number that grew steadily
over the last decades. German reunification of 1990 greatly increased the country's non-
religious population, a legacy of the state atheism of the previouslySoviet-controlled East.
Christian population has decreased in recent decades, particularly among Protestants.
[192]

Languages

The German language is the most widely spoken first language in the European Union, with around 100 million
native speakers.
[197]

Main article: Languages of Germany
German is the official and predominant spoken language in Germany.
[198]
It is one of 24 official
and working languages of the European Union,
[199]
and one of the three working languages of
the European Commission.
Recognized native minority languages in Germany are Danish, Low German, Sorbian, Romany,
and Frisian; they are officially protected by the European Charter for Regional or Minority
Languages. The most used immigrant languages are Turkish,Kurdish, Polish, the Balkan
languages, and Russian. 67% of German citizens claim to be able to communicate in at least
one foreign language and 27% in at least two languages other than their own.
[198]

Standard German is a West Germanic language and is closely related to and classified alongside
English, Low German, Dutch, and the Frisian languages. To a lesser extent, it is also related to
the East (extinct) and North Germanic languages. Most German vocabulary is derived from the
Germanic branch of the Indo-European language family.
[200]
Significant minorities of words are
derived from Latin and Greek, with a smaller amount from French and most recently English
(known as Denglisch). German is written using the Latin alphabet. German dialects, traditional
local varieties traced back to the Germanic tribes, are distinguished from varieties of standard
German by their lexicon, phonology, and syntax.
[201]

Education
Main articles: Education in Germany and List of universities in Germany

Heidelberg University is the oldest of Germany's universities and among its best ranked.
[202]
It was established in
1386.
Over 99% of Germans age 15 and above are estimated to be able to read and
write.
[4]
Responsibility for educational supervision in Germany is primarily organised within the
individual federal states. Since the 1960s, a reform movement attempted to unify secondary
education in a Gesamtschule (comprehensive school); several West German states later
simplified their school system to two or three tiers. A system of apprenticeship called Duale
Ausbildung ("dual education") allows pupils in vocational training to learn in a company as well as
in a state-run vocational school.
[203]
This successful model is highly regarded and reproduced all
around the world.
[204]

Optional kindergarten education is provided for all children between three and six years old, after
which school attendance iscompulsory for at least nine years. Primary education usually lasts for
four to six years and public schools are not stratified at this stage.
[203]
In contrast, secondary
education includes three traditional types of schools focused on different levels of academic
ability: the Gymnasium enrols the most gifted children and prepares students for university
studies; the Realschule for intermediate students lasts six years; the Hauptschule prepares
pupils for vocational education.
[205]


Wendelstein 7-X, a research facility at the Max Planck Institute of Plasma Physics in Greifswald. Much of
Germany's academic research is done in independent institutes.
The general entrance requirement for university is Abitur, a qualification normally based on
continuous assessment during the last few years at school and final examinations; however there
are a number of exceptions, and precise requirements vary, depending on the state, the
university and the subject. Germany's universities are recognised internationally; in the Academic
Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) for 2008, six of the top 100 universities in the world are in
Germany, and 18 of the top 200.
[206]

Most of the German universities are public institutions, funded by the Lnder governments, and
students have traditionally undertaken study without fee payment. In 2005 the public universities
introduced tuition fees of around 60 per semester (and up to 500 in the state
of Niedersachsen) for each student for a trial period;
[207][208]
however, the German public was not
amenable to the experiment and the temporary fee-based system was mostly abolished, with two
remaining universities to cease the fee requirement by the end of 2014.
[209]

Academic education is open to most citizens and studying is increasingly common in
Germany.
[210]
The dual education system that combines practical and theoretical learning, but
does not lead to an academic degree, is typical for Germany and is recognised as an exemplary
model for other countries.
[211]

The established universities in Germany are among the oldest in the world, with Heidelberg
University being the oldest in Germany (established in 1386 and in continuous operation since
then). Heidelberg is followed by Leipzig University (1409), Rostock University (1419), Greifswald
University (1456), Freiburg University (1457), LMU Munich (1472) and the University of
Tbingen (1477).
Academic research is also performed at independent non-university research institutions, such
as the Max Planck, Fraunhofer, Leibniz and Helmholtz institutes. Many of these institutions have
close connections with nearby universities.
Health
Main article: Health in Germany

Hospice of the Holy Spirit in Lbeck- one of the world's oldest humanitarian institutions and a precursor to
modern hospitals
Germany has the world's oldest universal health care system, dating back to Bismarck's social
legislation in 1883.
[212]
He stressed the importance of three key principles; solidarity, the
government is responsible to ensure access by those who are in need, subsidiarity, policies are
implemented with smallest no political and administrative influence, and corporatism, the
government representative bodies in health care professions deems feasible
procedures.
[213]
Since then there have been many reforms and provisions to ensure a balanced
health care system. Currently the population is covered by a fairly comprehensive health
insurance plan provided by statute. Certain groups of people (lifetime officials, self-employed
persons, employees with high income) can opt out of the plan and switch to a private insurance
contract. Previously, these groups could also choose to do without insurance, but this option was
dropped in 2009.
[214]
According to the World Health Organization, Germany's health care
system was 77% government-funded and 23% privately funded as of 2005.
[215]
In 2005, Germany
spent 11% of its GDP on health care. Germany ranked 20th in the world in life expectancy
with 77 years for men and 82 years for women, and it had a very low infant mortality rate (4 per
1,000 live births).
[215]

In 2010, the principal cause of death was cardiovascular disease, at 41%, followed by malignant
tumours, at 26%.
[216]
In 2008, about 82,000 Germans had been infected with HIV/AIDS and
26,000 had died from the disease (cumulatively, since 1982).
[217]
According to a 2005 survey,
27% of German adults are smokers.
[217]

Culture
Main article: Culture of Germany

Ludwig van Beethoven (17701827), composer
From its roots, culture in German states has been shaped by major intellectual and popular
currents in Europe, both religious and secular. Historically Germany has been called Das Land
der Dichter und Denker ("the land of poets and thinkers"),
[218]
because of the major role its
famous writers and philosophers have played in the development of Western thought and
culture.
The federated states are in charge of the cultural institutions. There are 240 subsidised theatres,
hundreds of symphonic orchestras, thousands of museums and over 25,000 libraries spread in
Germany. These cultural opportunities are enjoyed by many: there are over 91 million German
museum visits every year; annually, 20 million go to theatres and operas; 3.6 million per year
listen to the symphonic orchestras.
[219]
As of 2013 the UNESCO inscribed38 properties in
Germany on the World Heritage List.
[220]

Germany has established a high level of gender equality,
[221]
promotes disability rights, and is
legally and socially tolerant towards homosexuals. Gays and lesbians can legally adopt their
partner's biological children, and civil unionshave been permitted since 2001.
[222]
Germany has
also changed its attitude towards immigrants; since the mid-1990s, the government and the
majority of Germans have begun to acknowledge that controlled immigration should be allowed
based on qualification standards.
[223]
Germany has been named the world's second most valued
nation among 50 countries in 2010.
[224]
A global opinion poll for the BBC revealed that Germany is
recognised for having the most positive influence in the world in 2011,
[225]
and for being the most
positively viewed nation in the world, in 2013
[226]
and 2014.
[227]

Art
Main article: German art

Chalk Cliffs on Rgen(1818) by Caspar David Friedrich, the most prominent artist of Romanticism
Numerous German painters have enjoyed international prestige through their work in diverse
artistic styles. Albrecht Drer,Hans Holbein the Younger, Matthias Grnewald and Lucas
Cranach the Elder were important artists of the Renaissance, Peter Paul Rubens and Johann
Baptist Zimmermann of Baroque, Caspar David Friedrich and Carl
Spitzweg of Romanticism, Max Liebermann of Impressionism and Max Ernst of Surrealism.
Several German artist groups formed in the 20th century, such as the November Group or Die
Brcke (The Bridge) and Der Blaue Reiter (The Blue Rider) in Expressionism. The New
Objectivity arose as a counter-style to it during the Weimar Republic. After WWII, main
movements of Neo-expressionism, performance art and Conceptual art evolved, with notable
artists such asJoseph Beuys, Gerhard Richter, Jrg Immendorff, HA Schult, Aris Kalaizis, Neo
Rauch (New Leipzig School) and Andreas Gursky (photography). Major art exhibitions and
festivals in Germany are the documenta, transmediale and Art Cologne.
Music
Main article: Music of Germany
J.S. Bach
Prludium und Fuge
L.v. Beethoven
5. Sinfonie
R. Wagner
Die Walkre
German classical music comprises works by some of the world's most well-known composers,
including Ludwig van Beethoven, Johann Sebastian Bach, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Johannes
Brahms,Richard Wagner, Richard Strauss, Franz Schubert, Georg Friedrich Hndel, Carl Maria
von Weber,Robert Schumann, Felix Mendelssohn, Karlheinz Stockhausen and Carl Orff.
Germany is the second largest music market in Europe, and fourth largest in the
world.
[228]
German popular music of the 20th and 21st century includes the movements of Neue
Deutsche Welle (Nena, Trio), Pop (Alphaville, Modern
Talking), Ostrock (City, Keimzeit), Metal/Rock (Rammstein, Scorpions), Punk (Die rzte, Die
Toten Hosen), Pop rock (Beatsteaks, Tokio Hotel), Indie (Tocotronic, Blumfeld) and Hip Hop (Die
Fantastischen Vier, Deichkind). Especially the German Electronic music gained global influence,
with Kraftwerk being a pioneer group in this genre,
[229]
and the Minimal and Techno scenes in
Germany being very popular (e.g. Paul van Dyk, Tomcraft, Paul Kalkbrenner and Scooter).
Architecture
Main articles: Architecture of Germany, Altstadt, World Heritage Sites in Germany, Castles in
Germany and List of spa towns in Germany

Kurhaus Binz on Rugia Island, a typical example of resort architecture. This style is common on the
GermanBaltic Sea coast.
Architectural contributions from Germany include the Carolingian and Ottonian styles, which
were precursors ofRomanesque. Brick Gothic in medieval times and Brick Expressionism in
modern times are two distinctive styles that developed in Germany. Also
in Renaissance and Baroque art, regional and typically German elements evolved (e.g.Weser
Renaissance and Dresden Baroque). Among many renowned Baroque masters
were Pppelmann, Balthasar Neumann, Knobelsdorff and the Asam brothers.
Germany is especially renowned for its timber frame old towns, with many well-kept examples to
be found along theGerman Timber-Frame Road, leading from the very south of
Germany to Northern Germany and its coasts.
When industrialisation spread across Europe, Classicism and a distinctive style
of historism developed in Germany, sometimes referred to as Grnderzeit style, due to the
economical boom years at the end of the 19th century. Resort architecture and Spa
architecture are sub-styles, that evolved since the 18th century in Germany, with the first
modernSpas and Seaside resorts of Europe. Many architects formed this era,
with Schinkel, Semper, Stler, von Grtner,Schwechten and Lipsius among them.
Jugendstil became a dominant architectural style at the turn of the 19th to the 20th century, with
a strong influence of the Art Nouveau movement.
[230]
The Art Deco movement did not gain much
influence in Germany, instead the Expressionist architecture spread across the country, with
e.g. Hger, Mendelsohn, Bhmand Schumacher being influential architects.
Germany was particularly important in the early modern movement - it is the home of
the Bauhaus movement founded by Walter Gropius. And thus Germany is a cradle of modern
architecture. Ludwig Mies van der Rohe became one of the world's most renowned architects in
the second half of the 20th century. He conceived of the glass faade skyscraper.
[231]

Renowned contemporary architects and offices include Hans Kollhoff, Helmut
Jahn, Graft, Behnisch, Albert Speer Junior, Frei Otto, GMP, AWA, Ingenhoven,Sauerbruch
Hutton, Sergei Tchoban, Hadi Teherani, Oswald Mathias Ungers, Gottfried Bhm, Stephan
Braunfels and Anna Heringer.
Literature and philosophy
Main articles: German literature and German philosophy

The Brothers Grimm
German literature can be traced back to the Middle Ages and the works of writers such
as Walther von der Vogelweide andWolfram von Eschenbach. Well-known German authors
include Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Friedrich Schiller, Gotthold Ephraim Lessing and Theodor
Fontane. The collections of folk tales published by the Brothers Grimm popularised German
folklore on an international level. Influential authors of the 20th century include Gerhart
Hauptmann, Thomas Mann, Hermann Hesse, Heinrich Bll and Gnter Grass.
[232]
German-
speaking book publishers produce some 700 million books every year, with about 80,000 titles,
nearly 60,000 of them new. Germany comes third in quantity of books published, after the
English-speaking book market and the People's Republic of China.
[233]
The Frankfurt Book Fair is
the most important in the world for international deals and trading, with a tradition spanning over
500 years.
[234]

German philosophy is historically significant. Gottfried Leibniz's contributions to rationalism;
the enlightenment philosophy byImmanuel Kant; the establishment of classical German
idealism by Johann Gottlieb Fichte, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel andFriedrich Wilhelm Joseph
Schelling; Arthur Schopenhauer's composition of metaphysical pessimism; the formulation
ofcommunist theory by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels; Friedrich Nietzsche's development
of perspectivism; Gottlob Frege's contributions to the dawn of analytic philosophy; Martin
Heidegger's works on Being; and the development of the Frankfurt school by Max
Horkheimer, Theodor Adorno, Herbert Marcuse andJrgen Habermas have been particularly
influential. In the 21st century, Germany has contributed to the development of contemporary
analytic philosophy in continental Europe.
[235]
Along with the earlier mention of achievements in
science by Germans, it is clear that German literature and philosophy have profoundly shaped
Western society's development. Correspondingly, 20th century author Peter Watson, who has
written extensively on the progressive development of modern thought, incisively remarks, "Kant,
Humboldt, Marx, Clausius, Mendel, Nietzsche, Planck, Freud, Einstein, Weber for good or ill,
can any other nation boast a collection of eleven (or even more) individuals who compare with
these figures in regard to the enduring influence they have had on modern ways of thought?"
[236]

Cinema
Main article: Cinema of Germany

Star of Fritz Lang on the Boulevard of Stars at Berlin's Potsdamer Platz. Lang was the director of Metropolis, the
first science fiction film (in feature length), that premiered in 1927.
[237]

German cinema dates back to the earliest years of the medium, it has made major technical and
artistic contributions to film, as with the work of the Skladanowsky Brothers, who showed the first
film sequences ever to an audience, in 1895. Early German cinema was particularly influential
with German expressionists such as Robert Wiene and Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau. Director Fritz
Lang's Metropolis (1927) is referred to as the first modern science-fiction film. In 1930Josef von
Sternberg directed The Blue Angel, the first major German sound film.
[238]
With the rise of Nazi
Germany, the work of Leni Riefenstahl came to international fame and was stylistically copied in
several productions, especially in post-war advertisements.
During the 1970s and 1980s, New German Cinema directors such as Volker Schlndorff, Werner
Herzog, Wim Wenders, and Rainer Werner Fassbinder put West German cinema on the
international stage.
[239]
The annualEuropean Film Awards ceremony is held every other year in
Berlin, home of the European Film Academy (EFA); theBerlin Film Festival, held annually since
1951, is one of the world's foremost film festivals.
[240]

In the 21st century, several German movies have had international success, such as Nowhere in
Africa (2001), Das Experiment (2001), Good Bye, Lenin! (2003), Gegen die Wand (Head-
On) (2004), Der Untergang (Downfall) (2004),Perfume (2006), The Baader Meinhof
Complex (2008), The Wave (2008), The White Ribbon (2009), Pandorum (2009),Soul
Kitchen (2009), Animals United (2010), Combat Girls (2011) and Cloud Atlas (2012).
The Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film went to the German production Die
Blechtrommel (The Tin Drum) in 1979, to Nowhere in Africa in 2002, and to Das Leben der
Anderen (The Lives of Others) in 2007.
[241]

Media
Main articles: Television in Germany, Radio in Germany, List of newspapers in
Germany and Video gaming in Germany
Germany's television market is the largest in Europe, with some 34 million TV households.
Around 90% of German households have cable or satellite TV, with a variety of free-to-view
public and commercial channels.
[242]
The most watched television broadcast of all-time in
Germany was the Germany vs Argentina final game of the 2014 FIFA World Cup, that Germany
won.
[243]
The top ten most watched television broadcasts of all-time in Germany all feature
the German national football team.
The German video gaming market is one of the largest in the
world.
[244]
The Gamescom in Cologne is Europe's leading gaming convention. Popular game
series from Germany include Turrican, the Anno series, The Settlers series,
the Gothic series, SpellForce, the X series, the FIFA Manager series, Far Cry andCrysis. The
most relevant game developers and publishers are Bigpoint, Blue Byte, Crytek, Deck13, Deep
Silver, Egosoft, Gameforge, Goodgame, Kalypso Media, Nintendo Europe, Piranha
Bytes, Related Designs, Wooga and Yager Development.
Cuisine
Main article: German cuisine

A waitress at Oktoberfest. She is wearing a dirndl, a traditional German dress, and holds a Ma - a one litre glass
of beer.
German cuisine varies from region to region. The southern regions of Bavaria and Swabia, for
instance, share a culinary culture with Switzerland and Austria. In all regions, meat is often eaten
in sausage form.
[245]
Organic food has gained a market share of ca. 2%, and is expected to
increase further.
[246]
Although wine is becoming more popular in many parts of Germany, the
national alcoholic drink is beer. German beer consumption per person is declining, but at
121.4 litres in 2009 it is still among the highest in the world.
[247]
The Michelin Guide of 2012 has
awarded nine restaurants in Germany three stars, the highest designation, while 32 more
received two stars and 208 with one star.
[248]
German restaurants have become the world's
second-most decorated after France.
[249][250]

Pork, beef, and poultry are the main varieties of meat consumed in Germany, with pork being the
most popular. The average person in Germany will consume up to 61 kg (134 lb) of meat in a
year. Among poultry, chicken is most common, although duck, goose, and turkey are also
enjoyed. Game meats, especially boar, rabbit, and venison are also widely available all year
round. Trout is the most common freshwater fish on the German menu; pike, carp, andEuropean
perch also are listed frequently. Vegetables are often used in stews or vegetable soups, but are
also served as side dishes. Carrots, turnips, spinach, peas, beans, broccoli and many types of
cabbage are very common. A wide variety of cakes and tarts are served throughout the country,
most commonly made with fresh fruit. Apples, plums, strawberries, and cherries are used
regularly in cakes. Cheesecake is also very popular, often made with quark.Schwarzwlder
Kirschtorte (Black Forest cake, made with cherries) is probably the most well-known example of
a wide variety of typically German tortes filled with whipped or butter cream.
Sports
Main article: Sport in Germany

The German national football teamafter winning the FIFA World Cup for the fourth time in 2014. Football is the
most popular sport in Germany.
Twenty-seven million Germans are members of a sports club and an additional twelve million
pursue sports individually.
[251]
Association football is the most popular sport. With more than
6.3 million official members, the German Football Association (Deutscher Fuball-Bund) is the
largest sports organisation of its kind worldwide.
[251]
TheBundesliga, the top league of men's club
football in Germany, is the most popular sports league in Germany and attracts the second
highest average attendance of any professional sports league in the world. The Frauen-
Bundesligais the top league of women's club football in Germany.
The German men's national football team won the FIFA World Cup in 1954, 1974, 1990, and
2014 and the UEFA European Championship in 1972, 1980 and 1996. Germany hosted the FIFA
World Cup in 1974 and 2006 and the UEFA European Championship in 1988. Among the most
well-known footballers are Franz Beckenbauer, Gerd Mller,Jrgen Klinsmann, Lothar
Matthus, Oliver Kahn, Miroslav Klose and Thomas Mller.
Other popular spectator sports include wintersports, boxing, handball, volleyball, basketball, ice
hockey, tennis, horse riding and golf. Water sports like sailing, rowing, swimming, wind-
and kitesurfing, wakeboarding, underwater diving, fishing, powerboating and yachting are
popular in Germany as well, especially with large annual events such as Kiel Week or Hanse
Sail Rostock.
[251]

Germany is one of the leading motor sports countries in the world. Constructors
like BMW and Mercedes are prominent manufacturers in motor sport. Additionally, Porsche has
won the 24 Hours of Le Mans, an annual endurance race held in France, 16 times, and Audi has
won it 11 times. The Formula Onedriver Michael Schumacher has set many motor sport records
during his career, having won more Formula One World Drivers' Championships and more
Formula One races than any other driver; he is one of the highest paid sportsmen in
history.
[252]
Sebastian Vettel has won the championships from 2010 until 2013 and thus is among
the most successful F1 drivers of all times.
Historically, German sportsmen have been successful contenders in the Olympic Games,
ranking third in an all-time Olympic Games medal count, combining East and West German
medals. In the 2012 Summer Olympics, Germany finished fifth in the medal count, while in
the 2006 Winter Olympics they finished first.
[253]
Germany has hosted the Summer Olympic
Games twice, in Berlin in 1936 and in Munich in 1972. The Winter Olympic Games took place in
Germany once in 1936 in Garmisch-Partenkirchen.
Fashion
Main article: German fashion

Claudia Schiffer is a renowned German supermodel
Germany has been influential on western fashion throughout history. Today it is a leading country
in the fashion industry. In around 1,300 companies with more than 130,000 employees a revenue
of 28 billion Euro is generated by the German textile industry. Almost 44 percent of the products
are exported. The textile branch thus is the second largest producer of consumer goods after
food production.
[254]

German fashion is famed for its elegant lines, as well as unconventional young designs and its
great variety of styles. Berlin is the center of young and creative fashion in Germany, prominently
displayed at Berlin Fashion Week (twice a year). It also hosts Europe's largest fashion trade fair
called Bread & Butter. Other important centers of the scene
are Munich, Dsseldorf,Hamburg and Cologne. Also smaller places are important design and
production hubs of the German fashion industry, such
as Herford, Metzingen, Herzogenaurach, Schorndorf, Albstadt, Chemnitz and Detmold.
[255]

The most renowned fashion designers from Germany include Karl Lagerfeld, Hugo
Boss, Wolfgang Joop, Torsten Amft, Rudolph Moshammer, Etienne Aignerand Michael
Michalsky. Famous high-end brands are e.g. BOSS, Escada, Valisere, JOOP! and Wunderkind.
Mainstream, outdoor, sport and street fashion labels from Germany are globally popular, such
as adidas, PUMA, P&C, Marc O'Polo, Tom
Tailor, s.Oliver, Closed, Esprit, Buffalo, Reusch and Jack Wolfskin.
German fashion is popular in celebrity circles and with high fashion models.
[256]
Successful
German fashion models include Claudia Schiffer, Heidi Klum, Diane Kruger, Eva Padberg, Julia
Stegner, Toni Garrn, Julia Stegner, Kirsten Dunst, Tatjana Patitz, Manon von
Gerkan, Nico, Uschi Obermaier, Franziska Knuppe,Lena Gercke, Sara Nuru, Barbara
Meier, Nadja Auermann, Claudia Ciesla, Asl Bayram, Shermine Shahrivar, Evelyn Sharma, Nico
Schwanz and Marten Laciny.
See also
Outline of Germany
References
1. Jump up^ "Die zentralen Worte daraus, 'Einigkeit und Recht
und Freiheit', waren zum offiziellen Wahlspruch der BRD
erhoben worden." Peter Ebenbauer, Christian Wessely und
Reinhold Esterbaue: Religise Appelle und Parolen:
Interdisziplinre Analysen zu einer neuen Sprachform,
Kohlhammer, 2008, p. 84Online
2. Jump up^ Other Than Identity: The Subject, Politics and Art -
Google Books
3. Jump up^ The complete guide to national symbols and
emblems - James Minahan - Google Books
4. ^ Jump up to:
a

b

c

d

e

f

g

h

i
"World Factbook". CIA. Retrieved 30
August 2014.
5. Jump up^ This number represents the number of people
without "immigrant background". It does not represent the
number of people who view themselves as German. This
number does not include people with a German forebear, who
came to modern Germany after 1955
(including Aussiedler and Sptaussiedler) and descendants of
that person. But including Sorbs and other autochthonous
groups.
6. Jump up^ BAMF - Bundesamt fr Migration und Flchtlinge -
Das BAMF - Migrationsbericht 2012
7. Jump up^ Statistische mter des Bundes und der
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8. ^ Jump up to:
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b

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d
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c

d
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10. Jump up^ "Gini coefficient of equivalised disposable income
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Aussprachewrterbuch (in German) (6th ed.). Dudenverlag.
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13. Jump up^ "Russia Has World's 2nd Largest Number of
Immigrants UN Study". RIA Novosti. 12 September 2013.
Retrieved 8 October 2014.
14. Jump up^ The Latin name Sacrum Imperium (Holy Empire) is
documented as far back as 1157. The Latin name Sacrum
Romanum Imperium (Holy Roman Empire) was first
documented in 1254. The full name "Holy Roman Empire of the
German Nation" (Heiliges Rmisches Reich Deutscher Nation)
dates back to the 15th century.
Zippelius, Reinhold (2006) [1994]. Kleine deutsche
Verfassungsgeschichte: vom frhen Mittelalter bis zur
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Beck. p. 25. ISBN 978-3-406-47638-9.
15. Jump up^ Schulze, Hagen (1998). Germany: A New History.
Harvard University Press. p. 4. ISBN 0-674-80688-3.
16. Jump up^ Wolfram, Herwig (1997). The Roman Empire and its
Germanic Peoples. University of California Press. pp. 4
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17. Jump up^ Online Etymological Dictionary; "Deutsch"
18. Jump up^ "Germany, the Stem Duchies & Marches".
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20. Jump up^ Online Etymological Dictionary; "Germany"
21. Jump up^ Etymologisch Woordenboek der Nederlandse Taal;
"Duits", "Duitsland".
22. Jump up^ "Radiometric dating of the type-site for Homo
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23. Jump up^ "World's Oldest Spears". archive.archaeology.org. 3
May 1997. Retrieved 27 August 2010.
24. Jump up^ "Earliest music instruments found". BBC. 25 May
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25. Jump up^ "Ice Age Lion Man is worlds earliest figurative
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26. Jump up^ "The Venus of Hohle Fels". donsmaps.com. 14 May
2009. Retrieved 14 May 2009.
27. Jump up^ Claster, Jill N. (1982). Medieval Experience: 300
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28. ^ Jump up to:
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b
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29. Jump up^ Bowman, Alan K.; Garnsey, Peter; Cameron, Averil
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30. ^ Jump up to:
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b
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31. Jump up^ Wolfram (1997), The Roman Empire and its
Germanic Peoples, p. 11.
32. Jump up^ Peter Heather, Empires and Barbarians: The Fall of
Rome and the Birth of Europe (Oxford and New York: Oxford
University Press, 2009),368.
33. Jump up^ Richard P. McBrien, Lives of the Popes: The
Pontiffs from St. Peter to Benedict XVI, (HarperCollins
Publishers, 2000), 138.
34. Jump up^ The lumping of Germanic people into the generic
term 'Germans' has its roots in the Investiture Controversy
according to historian Herwig Wolfram, who claims it was a
defensive move made by the papacy to delineate them as
outsiders, partly due to the papacy's insecurity and so as to
justify counterattacks upon them. See: Herwig Wolfram, The
Roman Empire and its Germanic Peoples (Berkeley and Los
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35. Jump up^ Fulbrook 1991, pp. 1324.
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39. Jump up^ Macfarlane, Alan (1997). The savage wars of
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p. 51. ISBN 978-0-631-18117-0.
40. Jump up^ Gagliardo, G., Reich and Nation, The Holy Roman
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41. Jump up^ Fulbrook 1991, p. 97.
42. Jump up^ Henderson, W. O. (January 1934). "The
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45. Jump up^ Fulbrook 1991, pp. 135, 149.
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51. Jump up^ Fulbrook 1991, pp. 156160.
52. Jump up^ While it is correct to say that Germany experienced
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138. Jump up^ "Geschftsbericht 2006" (in German). Deutsche
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27 March 2011.
139. Jump up^ "Airports in Germany". Air Broker Center
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147. Jump up^ "Germany greenest country in the world". The
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