Europe

Europe

Europe is one of the world’s seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally divided from Asia by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting the Black and Aegean Seas.

Europe is bordered by the Arctic Ocean to the north, the Atlantic Ocean to the west, the Mediterranean Sea to the south, and the Black Sea and connected waterways to the southeast. Yet the borders of Europe—a concept dating back to classical antiquity—are somewhat arbitrary, as the primarily physiographic term “continent” can incorporate cultural and political elements.

Europe is the world’s second-smallest continent by surface area, covering about 10,180,000 square kilometres or 2% of the Earth’s surface and about 6.8% of its land area. Of Europe’s approximately 50 states, Russia is by far the largest by both area and population, taking up 40% of the continent, while Vatican City is the smallest. Europe is the third-most populous continent after Asia and Africa, with a population of 733 million or about 11% of the world’s population.

Europe, in particular Ancient Greece, is the birthplace of Western culture. It played a predominant role in global affairs from the 15th century onwards, especially after the beginning of colonialism.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Europe


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