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Germany and Europe – 21 Interesting Facts to Know

Scholars suggest that the real origin of its name is uncertain.

Yet, according to Greek mythology, the word Europe derives from the Greek Goddess’s name Europa, which translates into “wide-gazing” describing Europe’s broad shoreline from a shipboard’s perspective.

Europe has a great history of ancient civilizations that date back to ancient Greece and Rome.

Since the Renaissance, European art and science have had the biggest influence on today’s modern era.

In fact, Europe is a subcontinent of Asia, yet because of its cultural and economic domination and cultural difference from Asia, Europe is considered a continent on its own. 

Despite its small size, Europe is treated as a well-functioning and high-developed continent. Europe is as important as Asia when it comes to the diversity of cultures, languages, and heritages.

German culture is also one of the main cultures in Europe. Yet, because of Germany’s big influence, someone may wonder if Germany is in Europe or Asia?

Germany is a country in Central Europe and one of the most populous European countries after Russia. Germany is one of the strongest economies, and Germany’s influence dominates the European Union. 

Germany also has strong ties to Asia and America, but Europe is where Germany is located.

Is Germany part of Europe?

Germany is located among the North and Baltic seas to the North and the Alps in the South.

Germany borders Denmark to the North, Switzerland, and Austria to the South, Poland and the Czech Republic to the East, and the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, and France towards the West.

The Federal Republic of Germany (German: Deutschland) is situated in Central Europe and is one of its most popular countries.

With a population of more than 83 million people, Germany is the second most populous European country, following Russia.

Berlin is the largest and capital city of Germany and Berlin is a symbol of Reunification after it was divided by the Berlin Wall from 1961 to 1989, separating West Berlin from its remaining East Germany.

Germany consists of 16 states, with each of them having its own constitution.

Germany, at its current borders, is located in Central Europe. Germany is a member of the European Union. The other European Union members are in light green color on the map. Source Wikipedia

Click to check my other articles on Germany. I also linked them all at the end of this article.

Is Germany a major European country?

Germany is one of the leading countries in the whole of Europe.

With an area of more than 357,500 km², Germany is the 7th largest country in Europe and the 64th largest in the world.

German strong political stability, regulatory quality, well-developed rule of law, and solid economy make Germany the backbone of Europe.

Germany maintains relations with over 190 countries and is an important member of countless organizations like the United Nations (UN), the North Atlantic Treaty Organizations (NATO), the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, the World Bank Group, and the World Trade Organization.

Furthermore, the President of the European Commission is the German politician and physician Ursula von der Leyen.

Frankfurt in Germany is the most important financial center in Europe. The city is also home to the European Central Bank. Source Wikipedia

Is Germany a developed country?

Germany is widely recognized as the most powerful and developed country in Europe.

According to the 2020 Best Countries report, which was released in 2021, after the United States, China, and Russia, Germany is the 4th strongest economy in the world.

Strong economic centers spread throughout the country, and a good employment rate boosts Germany’s exemplary development.

What is Germany best known for?

Germany is known for its multicultural population of people from all kinds of backgrounds.

Germany is also the homeland of many famous poets, artists, and thinkers like Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Ludwig van Beethoven, Albert Einstein, Hugo Boss, and Johann Sebastian Bach.

From great inventions, sausages, different sorts of bread, beer, and Sauerkraut to the very famous Oktoberfest, Germany has great diversity to offer.

The country is also recognized for its free education, which gives it a brilliant literacy rate of 99%.

Germany’s fairytale-like castles, the Alps, woodlands, forests like the Black Forest, and countless historical sights are attractive tourist spots worth visiting.

Since Europe is a country-dense region, it is best to explore it by train. Germany is quite famous for its exceptional rail system.

Germans are also known for their love and passion for football. They remain to be one of the most talented teams in the world, winning 4 World Cups so far (1954, 1974, 1990, 2014).

Germany is also a fashion powerhouse. Click on my German Fashion Brands and German Perfume Brands to learn more.

When and Why was Germany divided?

After Germany’s surrender in 1945, the winners of WWII (US, UK, France, and the Soviet Union) divided Germany into four occupation zones of which the area of the US, UK, and France would become West Germany, and the Soviet Union’s sector would form East Germany.

During the Cold War, Germany was two separate German countries; the Federal Republic of Germany (FDR) and the German Democratic Republic (GDR).

The capital city Berlin was also divided between these two countries.

In 1961 the Berlin Wall was erected to stop the constant flow of refugees to the West, until finally, in 1989, the country was reunited again.

With the fall of the Socialist Unity Party of Germany (SED) and the fall of East Germany (GDR), the nation united into a great Germany again.

Click to read: Is Spanish a Germanic Language? Romance vs Germanic Languages

Why is Germany called the fatherland and Russia the motherland?

Some countries personify their lands with a gender, indicating their homeland to be masculine or feminine.

“Fatherland” used to be a nationalistic term during Second World War Germany, referring to a more militaristic undertone, whereas Russia points towards a distinct political undertone.

Fatherland ideology at the time aimed to unite the nation according to ancient Germany’s culture and traditions.

On the other hand, Russia is called the motherland, symbolizing a nation that supports and nourishes its people in times of hardship.

SUGGESTED READING: Is Russian a Germanic Language? Unique Features of Russian Language

Why is the German language so hard?

German might not be the easiest language to learn, but it’s also not the hardest.

Learners, and sometimes even native speakers, tend to struggle with the toughest aspect is its complex grammar.

Compared to English grammar, which is much more flexible, German grammar contains countless rules one must stick to.

German words are often complained about as being very long. This is simply because German words are spelled together instead of adding a hyphen between two words, which you would do in English.

Learning German from an English native speaker’s perspective might be much easier since both languages stem from the same language family, the Germanic languages.

Check out my article Languages Similar to German to learn mutually intelligible languages with German.

Interesting facts about Germany

Germany is undoubtedly a unique country with great diversity, but there are some really interesting facts you may be surprised by.

1. The Christmas tree tradition originated in Germany.

2. Germany is home to the world’s largest Cathedral in Cologne in North-Rhine-Westphalia.

3. There are over 1000 varieties of sausages and more than 20,000 castles in Germany.

4. The first Oktoberfest was the wedding of the Prince of Bavaria, who later became King Ludwig I.

5. In Germany, the attempt to escape jail is legal because it is believed to be a basic human instinct to be free.

6. As a result of World War 2, thousands of unexploded bombs are discovered every year all across the country.

7. One-third of the country is forest land.

8. Nearly every store and office is closed on Sundays, and it is against law regulation to vacuum, drill, turn on loud music, or even put on a wash load that may disturb neighbors due to its noise.

9. Police cars are mostly BMW and Audi, while taxis are mostly Mercedes-Benz.

10. Gummy Bears are an invention of a German.

11. Germans are credited for the world’s most remarkable inventions like the automobile engine and jet engine, the motorcycle, the discovery of insulin, the LCD screen, the pocket watch, and more.

SUGGESTED READING: What Water Do They Drink in Germany? German Habits, Water Brands, and more

What is considered Europe?

Out of the 7 continents in the world, Europe is one of them.

By covering only 2% of the total Earth’s surface, it is the second smallest continent making it only a bit larger than Australia.

It borders the Arctic Ocean to the North, the Mediterranean Sea to the South, Asia to the East, and the Atlantic Ocean to the West.

Europe is home to 50 countries, of which Russia is the largest in area and population, followed by Germany, with a citizen count of 83 million people.

What is the richest country in Europe?

According to the IMF WEO April 2021 Edition GDP (PPP) per capita, Luxembourg is Europe’s wealthiest country, followed by Ireland and Switzerland.

It is an important private banking center, contributing to Luxembourg’s biggest strength in its economy.

Vital trading partners include France, Belgium, and Germany.

This article is

written by Asma Schleicher and edited by Efe Genit. Asma is a creative writer with German and Pakistani roots. She is an analytical writer with a degree in business administration. In this blog, she mostly writes about cultural, travel, and fashion-related topics reflecting her real-life experiences. You can also check Asma’s profile in Upwork.