France is the third largest country in Europe. Three quarters of the population live in cities. The current population is 60,180,529, making France the fourth most populous country in Europe. France is among the healthiest, wealthiest, and best-educated country in the world.
Feudaliam was present in France during the fourteenth through eighteenth centuries. The French Revolution, in 1789, ended monarchy. Napoleon Bonaparte then formed formed an administrative state in France. Much of World War I was fought on France's soil. Afterwards, it grew to be the industrialized nation we know it as today.
The cities in France carefully preserve and restore the monuments and relics of the county's history. Paris, the largest city in France, is the most dazzling. It attracts artists and intellectuals from all countries. Paris is known as the la ville lumière, the City of Light. Marseilles is the chief port of France, as it is on the Mediterranean. It's also the oldest city in the country. Nearby Marseilles are the hill towns of Provence and Languedoc. These towns still have ancient theaters and buildings still standing. Lyons is well-known for its manufacturing, chemical industries, as well as for its food. Some famous foods here are saucisses and saucissons (sausages). Another important industrial city is Strasbourg. For a long time, it has been the crossroads of commerce. It is also well-known as an important medical and scientific center. It has three universities with 50,000 students, and is home to the Research Institute for Cancer of the Digestive System. Toulouse, located in the southwest of France, is a major center of the French aircraft industry. This hightech place has drawn a workforce of 115, 000 students.
Government/Society: In France, the government and industry have merged to try to preserve the natural beauty of the country and the heritage of its past, while promoting the varied resources of France. Some projects include a modern superhighway system, and restoration of Roman amphitheaters and ancient churches. With state subsidies for arts, theaters have been produced so that almost every French city has a thriving popular theater. More people are working in France than ever before. This is a result of the rising standard of living. The French want to be able to buy the conviences as well as luxeries of modern life. In addition, France has the best health care system in the world.
School is compulsory for children ages 6 to 16 in France. There are both government-run and private écoles maternelles, or nursery schools. Some take children as young as two. In the eighth grade, if students want to prepare for the traditional higher education, they begin to study Latin and sometimes Greek. Students can usually choose to either study two modern languages, or take general education classes combined with vocational training. At the end of three years of lycée, or high school, students take diffcult exams for their baccalaureat degree. In the past few decades, most of the larger universities were subdivided into smaller units to make them more responsive to students' needs.
The daily french diet contains a light breakfast, a big lunch, and a light dinner. Typical french breakfasts include flaky croissants, brioches, and other rolls eaten with jelly and café au lait. Other popular meals include escargot bourguinonne (snails made with garlic and herbs), biftek et pommes frites, (steak and french fried potatoes), or pot-au-feu, a savory stew. Meals are commonly accompanied with loaves of bread. As with french bread, french cheeses are as popular. There are over 400 different cheeses are produced in France.
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