Saturday, May 1, 2010

CZECH REPUBLIC - Country profile




The national flag of the Czech Republic (Czech: státní vlajka České republiky) is the same as the flag of the former Czechoslovakia. Upon the dissolution of Czechoslovakia the Czech Republic kept the Czechoslovak flag while the Slovak Republic adopted its own flag. The first flag of Czechoslovakia was based on the arms, and was white over red. This was identical to the Flag of Poland, so a blue triangle was added at the hoist. The flag was banned by the Nazis in 1939, and a horizontal tricolor of white, red, and blue was enforced. The original flag was restored in 1945.

When the Czech and Slovak Republics separated in 1993, the Czechs adopted a flag identical to the former flag of the Czech and Slovak Federative Republic, in direct violation of the constitutional act that explicitly forbids former federal symbols to be used by the two successor states.


Kde domov můj ? (in English: Where is my home?) was written by the composer František Škroup and the playwright Josef Kajetán Tyl as a part of the incidental music to the comedy Fidlovačka aneb Žádný hněv a žádná rvačka (Fidlovačka, or No Anger and No Brawl). It was performed for the first time by Karel Strakatý in the Stavovské divadlo (Estates Theatre) in Prague on December 21, 1834. The original song consists of two strophes (see below). Although J. K. Tyl is said to have considered leaving the song out of the play, not convinced of its quality, it soon became very popular among Czechs and was accepted as an informal anthem of a nation willing to revive its identity within the Habsburg Empire.

Soon after Czechoslovakia was formed in 1918, the first strophe of the song became the Czech part of the national anthem, followed by the first strophe of the Slovak song Nad Tatrou sa blýska. Because of language diversity of First republic official translations to Hungarian and German language were made.

The split of Czechoslovakia in 1992 divided also the Czechoslovak anthem. While Slovaks have extended their anthem adding a second strophe, the Czech Republic's national anthem has been legally adopted unextended, in its single-strophe version.

A small motif used by Škroup was written previously by W. A. Mozart in Concertanto Symphony KV 297 b.


Official Name:
Ceska Republika
short form: Cesko
int'l short form: Czechia
int'l long form: Czech Republic
formerly part of Czechoslovakia.

National motto: Pravda vítezí. (Truth prevails)

ISO Country Code: cz

Capital City: Prague (Praha, Prag; pop. 1.17 million by end 2002).

Other Cities:
Brno (376 000), Ostrava (315 000), Plzen, (Pilsen) (165 000)

Parliamentary Republic.
Independence: The Czech Republic was established 1 January 1993 (former Czechoslovak state established 1918).
Constitution: Signed 16 December 1992.

Location: Central Europe, southeast of Germany.
Area: 78 864 sq. kilometers.
Terrain: Bohemia in the west consists of rolling plains, hills, and plateaus surrounded by low mountains; Moravia in the east consists of very hilly country.

Climate: Temperate; mild summers; cold, cloudy, humid winters, west winds prevail.

Nationality: Czech(s).
Population: 10.23 million.
Ethnic groups: Czech (90.4% or 9.25 million); Moravian (more than 380,000 people); Slovak (193,000); Roma (171,000); Silesian ethnicity (11,000 people); Polish (52,000); German (39,000); Ukrainian (22,000) and Vietnamese (18,000).
Religions: Roman Catholic, Protestant.
Language: Czech, Slovak.
Literacy: 99.8%.

Natural resources: Coal, coke, kaolin, lignite, magnesite, timber, uranium.
Agriculture products: Wheat, potatoes, sugar beets, hops, fruit; pigs, poultry.
Industries: Metallurgy, machinery and equipment, motor vehicles, glass, armaments.

Exports partners: Germany 33.5%, Slovakia 8.7%, Austria 5.5%, Poland 5.5%, France 5.3%, UK 4.6%, Italy 4.3% (2005)

Imports partners: Germany 30%, Russia 5.7%, Slovakia 5.4%, China 5.1%, Poland 5%, Italy 4.8%, France 4.5%, Netherlands 4% (2005)

Currency: Czech Koruna (CZK)

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