From Infogalactic: the planetary knowledge core
Welcome to the Germany Portal!
Willkommen im Deutschland-Portal!
Germany is one of the world's most industrialised countries, located in the center of Europe. It is bordered to the north by the North Sea, Denmark, and the Baltic Sea, to the south by Austria and Switzerland, to the west by France, Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg, and to the east by Poland and the Czech Republic.
Germany is a democratic federal parliamentary republic, containing 16 federal states (Bundesländer), which in certain spheres act independently of the Federation or "Bund".
Germany is a developed country with a very high standard of living, and it maintains a comprehensive social security, a universal health care system and diverse environmental protection laws. It is a global leader in several industrial and technological sectors.
The Federal Republic of Germany is a member state of the United Nations, NATO, the G8 nations, and a founding member of the European Union. More...
Knut (5 December 2006 – 19 March 2011) was a polar bear who was born in captivity at the Berlin Zoological Garden. Rejected by his mother at birth, he was raised by zookeepers. He was the first polar bear cub to survive past infancy at the Berlin Zoo in more than 30 years. At one time the subject of international controversy, he became a tourist attraction and commercial success. After the German tabloid newspaper Bild ran a quote from an animal rights activist that decried keeping the cub in captivity, fans worldwide rallied in support of his being hand-raised by humans.
Knut became the center of a mass media phenomenon dubbed "Knutmania" that spanned the globe and spawned toys, media specials, DVDs, and books. Because of this, the cub was largely responsible for a significant increase in revenue, estimated at about five million euros, at the Berlin Zoo in 2007. Zoo attendance figures for the year had increased by an estimated 30 percent. On 19 March 2011, Knut died unexpectedly at the age of four. His death was caused by drowning after he collapsed into his enclosure's pool while suffering from encephalitis. More ...
Anniversaries for July 31
Did you know ...
- ... that Bach used the cantata Höchsterwünschtes Freudenfest, BWV 194, written for the inauguration of the church and organ in Störmthal (pictured), several times for Trinity Sunday?
- ... that Else Seifert worked as an onboard photographer for Hamburg Süd on its shipping routes around Europe, Africa, and the Middle East in the 1930s?
- ... that Anna Rügerin's 1484 books are the first publications known to be typeset by a woman?
- ... that the song "Ständchen" (Serenade), by Richard Strauss, begins with an appeal to creep out quietly and ends with a climax of expecting a rose to glow from the rapture of the night?
- ... that after attending the premiere, a critic wrote that Gesang der Verklärten by Max Reger (pictured) "may well reach the outermost limit of musical expression altogether"?
- ... that Nikolaus Hillebrand, who as a boy was a member of the Regensburger Domspatzen, and recorded with them as a soloist on Bach's St John Passion in 1979 and Dittersdorf's Requiem in 2009?
- ... that the River Trave was declared Germany's 2016/17 "Riverscape of the Year" by the Friends of Nature?
- ... that Max Reger's Nachtlied (Night Song) appears on the recording The Best of the King's Singers?
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