Portal:Czech Republic

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Panoramic view of Prague from Petřín Tower

Welcome to the Czech Portal!
Vítejte na Českém portálu!

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Location of Czech Republic within Europe

The Czech Republic (/ˈɛk/ (About this sound listen) CHEK; Czech: Česká republika, pronounced [ˈt͡ʃɛskaː ˈrɛpuˌblɪka] (About this sound listen), short form Czechia (Czech: Česko [ˈt͡ʃɛsko]), is a landlocked country in Central Europe. The country is bordered by Germany to the west, Austria to the south, Slovakia to the east and Poland to the north. Its capital and largest city, with 1.3 million inhabitants, is Prague. The Czech Republic includes the historical territories of Bohemia and Moravia, as well as a small part of Silesia.

The Czech state, formerly known as Bohemia (Čechy), was formed in the late 9th century as a small duchy around Prague, at that time under the dominance of the powerful Great Moravian Empire. After the fall of the Empire in 907, the centre of power was transferred from Moravia to Bohemia, under the Přemyslids. Since 1002 it was formally recognized as part of the Holy Roman Empire. In 1212 the duchy was raised to a kingdom and during the rule of Přemyslid dukes/kings and their successors, the Luxembourgs, the country reached its greatest territorial extent (13th–14th century). During the Hussite wars the kingdom faced economic embargoes and crusades from all over Europe. Following the Battle of Mohács in 1526, the Kingdom of Bohemia was gradually integrated into the Habsburg monarchy as one of its three principal parts, alongside the Archduchy of Austria and the Kingdom of Hungary. The Bohemian Revolt (1618–20) lost in the Battle of White Mountain, led to Thirty Years' War and further centralization of the monarchy including forced recatholization and Germanization. With the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806, the Bohemian kingdom became part of the Austrian Empire. In the 19th century the Czech lands became the industrial powerhouse of the monarchy and the core of the Republic of Czechoslovakia which was formed in 1918, following the collapse of the Austro-Hungarian Empire after World War I. After 1933, Czechoslovakia remained the only democracy in central and eastern Europe.

Following the Munich Agreement and the Polish annexation of Zaolzie, Czechoslovakia fell under German occupation during World War II. By 1945, a major portion of the country was liberated by the Red Army, and the subsequent gratitude towards the Soviets, combined with disillusionment with the West for failing to intervene, led the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia to the majority of seats in the 1946 elections. In the 1948 coup d'état, Czechoslovakia became a communist-ruled state. In 1968, the increasing dissatisfaction culminated in attempts to reform the communist regime. The events, known as the Prague Spring of 1968, ended with an invasion by the armies of the Warsaw Pact countries (with the exception of Romania); the troops remained in the country until the 1989 Velvet Revolution, when the communist regime collapsed. On 1 January 1993, Czechoslovakia peacefully dissolved into its constituent states, the Czech Republic and the Slovak Republic.

In 2006, the Czech Republic became first former member of the Comecon to achieve the status of a developed country according to the World Bank. In addition, the country has the highest level of human development in Central and Eastern Europe, ranking among the top 30 nations in the world. The Czech Republic ranks as the ninth-most peaceful country in Europe, while achieving the best performance in democratic governance and infant mortality in the region. It is a pluralist parliamentary representative democracy with membership in the European Union, NATO, the OECD, the OSCE, the Council of Europe and the Visegrád Group.

Selected article

Prague by night

Prague is the capital and largest city of the Czech Republic. Situated on the River Vltava in central Bohemia, Prague has been the political, cultural, and economic centre of the Czech state for over 1100 years. The city proper is home to more than 1.2 million people, while its metropolitan area is estimated to have a population of over 1.9 million.

Prague is widely considered to be one of the most beautiful cities in Europe with preserved examples from all periods of history (avoiding major calamities and wars) and is among the most visited cities on the continent. Since 1992, the extensive historic centre of Prague has been included in the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites. According to Guinness World Records, Prague Castle is the largest ancient castle in the world. Nicknames for Prague have included "the mother of cities", "city of a hundred spires" and "the golden city".

Selected biography

Jaromír Jágr is a professional ice hockey right winger, who plays for the New Jersey Devils of the National Hockey League. He formerly played with the Pittsburgh Penguins, Washington Capitals, New York Rangers, Philadelphia Flyers, Dallas Stars and the Boston Bruins; serving as captain of the Penguins and the Rangers. After leaving the Rangers, he played for three seasons in the Kontinental Hockey League with Avangard Omsk before returning to the NHL with the Flyers. He is the most productive European-born player who ever played in the National Hockey League and he is considered one of the greatest players of all-time.

Jágr was the fifth overall selection in the 1990 NHL Entry Draft. He won consecutive Stanley Cups in the 1991 and 1992 seasons with the Penguins. He has won the Art Ross Trophy as the NHL Scoring Champion five times (four times in a row), received the Lester B. Pearson Award for the NHL's outstanding player as voted by the NHL Players' Association three times, and won a Hart Memorial Trophy as the league's most valuable player, and was a finalist four times. Jágr and teammate Martin Brodeur are the last two players drafted in 1990 who are still active players in the NHL.

In 2006 he was nominated for the Hart Trophy and Lester B. Pearson Award, winning the latter. During the award speech for the Lester B. Pearson Award Jagr said: "With this award, you get voted on by players you play against every night and I think they understand the game better than the media". He has been named to seven NHL First All-Star Teams. Jágr is currently the NHL's eighth leading point-scorer (as of the end of the 2011–12 NHL season), and is the all-time leader among European trained players in goals, assists and points, as well as the leading point scorer among active NHL players. Jágr was the Czech Republic's flag bearer for the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics.

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Reinhardt Heydrich's car after the 1942 assassination attempt in Prague

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Dancing House in Prague

Photographer: Matteo Piotto; License: Creative Commons CC-BY-SA

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Czech lands: BohemiaMoraviaCzech Silesia

History: Unetice cultureBoiiMarcomanniSamoGreat MoraviaPřemyslid dynastyLands of the Bohemian CrownCzech lands (1526–1648)1648–18671867–1918)CzechoslovakiaCzech Republic

Geography: LakesProtected areasRegionsRivers

Law: JudiciaryLaw enforcementSupreme Court of the Czech Republic

Politics: Administrative divisionsCabinetConstitutionElectionsForeign relationsMilitaryParliamentPolitical partiesPresidentPrime Minister

Economy: BanksCzech korunaEnergyOil and gas depositsStock ExchangeTourismTransport

Culture: ArchitectureArtCinemaCuisineDemographicsEducationLanguageLiteratureMediaMusicPhilosophyProstitutionPublic holidaysReligionSportTelevisionVideo gaming

Symbols: FlagCoat of armsNational anthem (Kde domov můj?)

Lists: Outline of the Czech RepublicIndex of Czech Republic-related articles



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