ТОП 10:

Put four types of questions to the given sentences.



Model: The official name of the country is the Federal Republic

of Germany.

1. Is the official name of the country the Federal Republic of

Germany?

2. Is the official name of the country the Federal Republic of

Germany or Republic of Germany?

3. The official name of the country is the Federal Republic of

Germany, isn’t it?

4. What is the official name of the country?

5. What is the Federal Republic of Germany?

1. Germany borders on Poland, Czech Republic, Austria,

Switzerland, France, Luxembourg, Belgium, The Netherlands and

Denmark.

2. It is washed by the North Sea and the Baltic Sea.

3. Historically Germany had covered a long way from a dispersement

of territory in its early periods to a united republic

nowadays.

4. Bavaria was granted to the house of Wittelsbach in 1180.

Sum up the information about Germany and its history.

UNIT 5

FRANCE. GENERAL INFORMATION

AND HISTORICAL SURVEY

They say that „everyone has two homes – one’s own and

France”. For centuries France has been a wellspring of inspiration

in art, music, and literature; a fountainhead for many of the world

great ideas. The language of the country is still a second worldpopular

one on the planet. In France, taste and elegance are in the

air, and simply being there is an exhilarating experience. It is a

dynamic country where much of Europe’s intellectual and artistic

pace are set. French people create valuable new traditions to add

to the glorious old ones.

French Republic, the largest country in the Western Europe,

has an area of approximately 546,490 square kilometres. It borders

on Spain in the south, Italy and Switzerland in the east, and

Germany, Luxembourg, and Belgium in the northeast. But about

half of France’s total border is formed by coastline, with the

Mediterranean on the southeast and the Atlantic and the English

Channel (La Manche, or „the sleeve”, to the French) on the west

and northwest.

The capital of France is Paris, one of the most beautiful and

specific European cities with an ancient history. „The holiday which

is always with you”, as famous American writer Ernest Hemingway

used to name it, Paris has been attracting people magnetically

since its very foundation, from the time it was called Lutecia.

In ancient times the history of the country was rather dramatic.

By 51 B.C., Roman legions under Julius Caesar had conquered

much of the land called Gaul – an area that included all of

present day France as well as Belgium and Switzerland. Though

Greek and Phoenician traders had settled on the Mediterranean

coast centuries ago, Caesar’s victory marked the beginning of

more than five centuries of outside rule. Under the Romans, cities

(including Lyons, Nimes, and Arles) were built, and a communication

network – roads, bridges, and aqueducts – was set to serve

them. Some of the bridges, such as the Pont du Gard in Lanquedoc,

are still used today. In many parts of France modern highways

lie above the ancient Roman roads. Roman civilization came

with conquest, and in culture and language Gaul gradually became

a Latin country.

In the third century A.D., Gaul experienced the first invasions

across its eastern boundaries by wandering Germanic tribes. Over

the next two centuries more and more of these invaders – notably

Franks, Burgundians, and Visigoths – swept into Gaul. Rome no

longer had the strength to push them back. Towards the end of the

5th century, the Franks decisively defeated the last remnants of

Roman power and gained control of most of Gaul. By 500 A.D. a

Frankish kingdom under King Clovis had accepted Christianity.

The kings who followed Clovis had to fight off new invaders. In

732 the Franks defeated a Muslim army that had crossed the Pyrenees

from Spain. By 800, when Charlemagne (Charles the Great)

was crowned Holy Roman Emperor by the Pope, the Franks in29

cluded to their territory parts of present-day Austria, Germany,

Italy and Croatia. Under Charlemagne the Holy Roman Empire

grew even larger. Charlemagne set up schools, gave France a code

of laws, and strengthened the emperor’s authority. After his death,

however, the central power declined, the kingdom was divided

among Charlie’s grandsons. The western part became Francia, the

nucleus of today’s France. In the second half of the 9th century

disastrous raids by Vikings nearly destroyed the king’s power

there.

In 987 Hugh Capet was elected King of France by the nobles.

Gradually, with the support of merchants and the growing middle

class in the cities he strengthened the monarchy. By the 13th century

the king of France had become the most powerful ruler in Europe.

French agriculture flourished. Guilds in the towns and cities

produced quality goods. Foreign trade increased. French universities

attracted scholars from all over Europe. In every way France

became a European centre of styles and ideas.

The later Middle Ages were signed with a serious conflict between

the king of France, Philip IV, and the Church. In 1305 a

Frenchman was elected Pope Clement V. He had the papal palace

moved to Avignon, in southern France, and for the next 70 years

the popes were almost puppets of the French Crown. Only in 1378

the papacy returned to Rome.

The second conflict was that of English claims to the French

throne: since William, the Duke of Normandy, became king of

England in 1066, English kings had held sizable lands in France

and that’s why claimed to be kings there as well. In 1337 Edward

III of England invaded France, and the war known as The Hundred

Years War began. The English troops won Crecy, Poitiers,

and Agincourt, but they were unable to seize the French throne. In

1420’s a young farm girl Jeanne d’Arc (Joan of Arc) appeared at

the French court with „a God’s commander to lead the French

armies and to have the Dauphin – the rightful heir to the throne –

to be crowned at Rheims”. Her leadership turned the situation

greatly. Although she was betrayed and burned at the stake later

on, her courage so inspired the French that they were finally able

to chase the invaders out. In 1429 the Dauphin was crowned

Charles VII, and by 1450 the French had recaptured most of their

lands. When the war ended, the French Crown was far more

stronger and the land of France more unified than before.

The religious clashing appeared in France in the 16th century,

when the Reformation, based on the ideas of Martin Luther, began.

Many nobles and even some members of the royal family

became Huguenots (Protestants). France was divided into factions,

and civil war broke out. In 1572, by royal order, thousands of Huguenots

were killed in Paris and other French cities. Stability returned

in 1598, when King Henry IV, who had been converted

from Protestantism to Catholicism, issued the Edict of Nantes,

which allowed the Huguenots some religious freedom.

Under Henry IV France regained its prosperity and began to

acquire colonies in the New World. But in 1610 Henry was assassinated.

His queen, Marie de Medicis, became regent for their

young son, King Louis XIII. There appeared the dissent between

the nobility, the conflict between Huguenots and Catholics; the

royal power was weakened.

In 1614 Cardinal de Richelieu became Louis XIII’s chief

minister with nearly absolute control over all aspects in the country

life. Step by step he turned France into the strongest state of

Europe. Richelieu crushed all kinds of opposition inside France,

levied high taxes, encouraged foreign trade and expanded the

French Empire in North America, the Caribbean and elsewhere. In

foreign policy Richelieu opposed the powerful Habsburg monarchies

of Austria and Spain, and as a result France went into the

Thirty Years War. Cardinal Richelieu managed to restore royal

power and set the stage for the absolute monarchy of Louis XIV.

Louis XIV came to the throne as a child in 1643. For the first

18 years of his 72-year reign Richelieu’s policies were continued

by new chief minister, Cardinal Mazarini. When at last Louis XIV

began to rule for himself, he was the strongest king in Europe. In

1685 he revoked the Edict of Nantes, and the Huguenots were to

suffer great indignities or even to be expelled if they refused to

convert. He involved France in costly wars with Spain, the Netherlands

and England but actually gained little for the country. He

announced himself to be the God’s representative on the earth

responsible to no one. „L’etat c’est moi” („The state is me”) he

used to say, reflecting the centralized power of „le roi soleil” („the

sun king”).

In the early 18th century the next French monarch, Louis XV,

succeeded a throne. Royal power seemed to be strong but below

the surface there appeared troubles. France was defeated by England

in the Seven Years War and lost much of its territories in

North America. The inner dissatisfaction with social, political and

economic conditions together with growth of an able, educated

middle class, led to a crisis. Protests, riots and dissent grew into a

revolution which swept the old regime. Crown, church and privilege

were destroyed.

Vocabulary notes

inspiration – натхнення;

to push back – виганяти;

to flourish – процвітати;

to betray – зраджувати;

to expand – розширяти;

dissatisfaction – незадоволення.

Practical exercises




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