The seventh-century Bulgarian empire dominated the Balkans and was a powerhouse of Slavonic culture. Later, Ottoman conquest and Soviet influence left their mark on the national psyche. Bulgaria provides a key to understanding the Bulgarian people. It outlines their long and complex history, shows you what everyday life is like there today, and offers advice on what to expect and how to behave in different circumstances.
This is a small country of proud and persevering people. And while the ancient Greeks fashioned our political, ethical, aesthetic, and scientific values, their descendants down the ages have continued to set trends and shape world events. The Greek character is a product of the landscape. Surrounded by sea on three sides, the physical features of the land forged the pronounced individuality and strong local patriotism of the warring city-states of antiquity.
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Their shared history and language formed the basis of a powerful world culture. Today it is coming to terms with its recent economic and political upheavals. The Greeks have repeatedly proved they can adjust and shift their expectations—the new generation knows the old ways have gone and is bracing itself for unpredictable challenges. Greece will equip you with essential information about the background, values, and attitudes of the people you will meet and give practical advice on how to deal with unfamiliar situations. Life in Greece operates on many criss-crossing levels, offering plenty of possibilities and a variety of lifestyles.
Visitors emerge from their Greek experience enriched for life, with an enduring affection for this beautiful land and its gifted people.
And the pace of change shows little sign of abating. The mass emigration of Polish workers following European integration has had as significant an effect on Poland as it has on the destination countries, such as the UK. That Poland continues to develop in growth and influence is a testament to the legendary Polish resolve in the face of adversity. The Danube, Europe's second-longest river after the Volga, arrives from Slovakia and follows the border east, before turning due south to bisect the country and enter Serbia.
Transdanubia has three major lakes, all shallow and fringed with reeds.
Hungary - Culture Smart!: the Essential Guide to Customs & Culture
The largest by far is Balaton square miles, or sq. The second is Ferto Neusiedlersee , straddling the border with Austria. Between Balaton and Budapest lies Lake Velence. The main ranges of hills in Hungary form an almost straight line from southwest to northeast, from the Balaton Uplands to Buda Hills and continuing on the opposite side of the Danube as the Northern Uplands.
The western border with Austria runs through Alpine foothills. Badacsony, overlooking Lake Balaton, is one of several obvious extinct volcanoes in Hungary, but there are no active ones today. No earthquake recorded in the territory of present-day Hungary has had a magnitude greater than 6 on the Richter scale.
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The last earthquake fatality was in at Dunaharaszti, south of Budapest, when a makeshift house collapsed. The population of Hungary peaked at around The population density of per square mile per sq. The variability of the weather is explained by the position of the country, at the junction of the Maritime, Continental, and Mediterranean climatic zones.
There seems to be a trend toward greater variation within the country, and from year to year, in both temperature and rainfall. The trend over the last forty years has been slightly upward, in line with global warming. The six months between September and March saw record high temperatures set on numerous days across the country. Rainfall is variable too. The annual mean ranges from 28—32 inches — mm in the west to 18—22 inches — mm in the Great Plain.
Yet 's nationwide mean of 31 inches mm was followed in by only 16 inches mm. The pattern of rainfall is far from ideal. Much of it comes in summer thunder storms, so it quickly runs off or evaporates. Snow rarely falls before November or after April.
Many Hungarians suffer from headaches or other symptoms as warm or cold weather fronts pass over. The prevailing wind in Hungary is from the northwest. These, and archaeological evidence, suggest that Celtic tribes arrived about BCE and controlled the area of modern Transdanubia — Hungary to the west of the Danube. Celtic culture in Hungary is thought to have been at its height toward the end of the third and into the second century BCE.
Rivalry with Illyrian, Dacian, and other tribes weakened the Celts. By about 12 BCE the Romans had established their rule over the area of modern western Hungary, which became part of the Roman province of Pannonia. In CE the Romans, their empire in decline, invited the troublesome, warlike Huns to settle in Pannonia, but the rule of their famous leader Attila was brief.
There followed successive conquests of the area over more than five centuries by Ostrogoths, Gepids, Lombards, Avars, and Slavs, before the Hungarians arrived. The Magyars With no written historical records for guidance, it is hard to say exactly where the Magyars, or Hungarians, came from. Linguistically, Hungarian belongs to the Finno-Ugric group of languages seepage , the other surviving members of which occur in Northern Scandinavia and in pockets around the Baltic and across the territory of present-day Russia. The split between the Finnic and Ugric tribes is usually dated to around BCE, by which time the latter were pursuing an agricultural as well as a pastoral lifestyle, breeding horses and using iron.
Their cultures were strongly influenced during the first millennium CE by tribes of Iranian origin and by neighboring Greek, Persian, and Armenian cultures. By the fifth century CE, the Hungarians can be distinguished from other Ugric tribes and were in close contact with Bulgar Turks, on the steppes flanking the Volga River. They were part of successive loose federations of tribes, notably the Khazars.
Western Europe - Culture Smart!: The Essential Guide to Customs & Culture
By the ninth century, the Hungarians were centered further west around the Dnieper River and taking part in the political struggles among the Slavs and the Eastern Franks for control of the middle Danube Basin. The Avar empire of the previous century had been crushed by the Frankish forces of Charlemagne.
Slav tribes predominated for a while, but the instability in the region prevented their states from consolidating. So about , Hungarians may have arrived in the Carpathian Basin, to find a local population of about ,, which seems to have been rapidly absorbed. The Hungarians, still pagan and illiterate at this time, rivaled the earlier Vikings in the way they raided and pillaged much of Europe over the next sixty years. The "arrows of the Hungarians" feature as a terrorist scenario in many early chronicles.
Some people have interpreted the gift to mean that Stephen owed his crown to God, not Mammon — the Holy Roman Empire centered in modern Germany, which was the main power in Europe at the time. In fact, Sylvester and Emperor Otto III were collaborating to consolidate Christianity and extend Christendom eastward in a political and religious sense. By the time Stephen came to the throne, the Hungarians Magyars had been living in the Carpathian Basin for over a century and raiding in Europe for some time before that. Although medieval Hungary was almost completely devastated by Mongol incursions in —2, it covered vast areas of central and southeastern Europe at various times.
Buda became a center of the Renaissance under King Matthias I —90 , who amassed a famous library, second in size only to the Vatican's, and expanded the royal palace.
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Partition The reversal was rapid. Buda, the royal capital, fell in Thereafter, "Royal Hungary" the north and west was ruled by Habsburg king-emperors from Vienna, while Central Hungary became a Turkish sandjak province under the pasha of Buda, and Transylvania a semi-independent principality — a haven of high cultural standards and religious toleration.
Intermittent warfare between the Ottoman and Habsburg dominions continued. Actions Shares. Embeds 0 No embeds. No notes for slide. Hungary - Culture Smart! Hungary provides priceless cultural information not found in an average guidebook. Whether looking to secure a business deal, enrich your travels, or better understand the people and customs of Hungary, Culture Smart!
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