France, or the French Republic (République française), is a unitary semi-presidential constitutional republic in western Europe along with overseas territories and provinces. According to a 2011 census, the estimated population of metropolitan France is over 64 million inhabitants and consists of 90% of ethnic French, 3% Arab, and 2% German and other minorities; its capital is Paris, with a population of 2.3 million (2011 census). France is a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (since 1949) and is one of the founders of the European Union. This entry reviews the history of France, with an emphasis on its political, dynastical, and military rivalries and conflicts.

Historically, Franks were known as a loose confederation of Germanic tribes that populated the Middle/Lower Rhine region. Led by ...

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