|population:||65.8 mil (2013)|
|area:||643 801 km2|
Rich history of France began with the organization of the Celtic Gauls state, which assimilated later to the Roman Empire became a place of growth of Germanic Francia. In 486 Clovis I united the majority of Roman Gaul and 10 years later became a Catholic. The Pope anointed King of France only in 754. It was Pépin le Bref (Pepin the Short), who began the reign of the Carolingian dynasty. Subsequent rule of the Capetians, Valois and Bourbons was a time of fight for the centralisation of France, which was frequently falling apart as a result of civil wars or neighbours aggression. The French Revolution of 1789-1799 virtually ended the monarchy and started the republican period. The flourishing of the republic and the integration of French-speaking lands occurred during the Napoleon Bonaparte's military expansion. Even the world wars did not tear the core French territory and overseas colonies brought huge profits. Post-war France achieved nuclear weapon and became the economic superpower. France co-founded NATO and the European Union.
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