Europe is made up of 45 different nations, each with a variety of traditions and cultures. Europe is located north of Africa and west of Asia.
The terrain of this continent is made up of many mountain ranges and riverbeds, and temperatures vary little in the central and southern countries. The climates in the different parts of Europe are just as varying as the cultures. Northern Europe is cold. During the winter it is dark, because the sun is up for a short time. Central Europe is made up of rolling lands which have very good soil for farming. Also, because of the river system central Europe is very important to the shipping of goods to and from other countries. Eastern Europe has many natural resources such as iron and coal. It is a home to many countries which produce steel. Western Europe is known for land which produces grapes. Many vineyards are found in Western Europe. Southern Europe is mountainous and has a very warm climate making this one of Europe's vacation destinations.
There are about 50 different languages spoken in Europe and within those languages there are over 100 different dialects spoken in different regions. The Indo European languages are made up of three major branches which are Balto-Slavic, (Bulgarian, Czech, Polish, and Russian) Germanic (Danish, English, German and Swedish), and Romance (French, Spanish, and Italian). Within each country there are languages that are made up of things borrowed from each of the branches or from some other region.
Lots of food from Europe is from farms. The most common European crops include grains such as oats, barley, rye, and wheat. There is also corn, potatoes, flax, tobacco, and sugar beets. Most of the olives from Europe are from the Mediterranean area. Those farms also produce citrus fruits, figs, dates, and grapes. There is also lots of tropical food that is imported to Europe like coffee, cocoa, and tropical fruits. Most farmers in Europe also raise cattle, sheep, hogs, and poultry for meat. Dairy farming is very important in countries like Ireland, Denmark, the Netherlands, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.
Following World War II Europe has been trying to unify to try to look for ways to prevent any future conflicts. An organization was stated in 1957 called the European Community to help protect the interest of some of the member countries. This community slowly grew until 1992 when the twelve member states voted to create the European Union. Since it began in 1992, more countries have joined and its power and influence has also grown. The goals of the Union are to form a closer union among European people. The EU continues to promote peace in Europe by allowing the citizens of the member nations the benefits of European rulings on citizens' rights. The EU is working for global issues. For example, it is the world's largest donor of food aid to developing countries.
Europe has shown that even though it is made up of 700 million people with different languages, cultures, religions, and traditions, a common ground can be found to promote peace and tolerance. What a great example for the rest of the world!