February 26th, 2014

Geneva – International Capital of the World

The first mention of this Swiss city dates back to '58 BC. e. It is often called "the smallest of the large capitals", as there are headquarters about 200mezhdunarodnyh organizations, including – the European headquarters of the United Nations. Geneva stands out among other Swiss cities to its international character and is one of the largest centers of international activities.

Geneva – capital of the eponymous small canton (region) with a population of about 400 thousand people, consisting of the city proper and a few suburbs. It is located on the border with France, and the main language spoken – French. Canton of Geneva in fact – is a peninsula surrounded on three sides by France and on the fourth side – Lake Geneva. The best times of the year in Geneva – fall and spring. Winters are mild, but snow, thick fog hid the lake. When the north wind, in particularly uncomfortable, and even the courts take into account in sentencing differential pressure and mental instability of the residents at this time.


History of Geneva started long ago, as the place where it stands, from time immemorial, people settled. Archaeologists claim that the first settlements of primitive people appeared here about ten thousand years ago.

In the II century BC. e. Celtic settlement existed here. In "Notes on the Gallic War" Julius Caesar mentions strengthening Genava (from the Celtic gen – mouth of the river"). Far from it in 58 BC. e. his troops defeated the army of the Helvetii, subjugating their land. From the name of the Helvetii tribe and there was another name of Switzerland – Helvetia. Caesar founded the Roman lakeside border post, gradually turned into a small town. In V. n. e., after the collapse of the Roman Empire, Geneva became the capital of the kingdom of the Burgundians. Later the city became part of the Holy Roman Empire and became a free imperial city, controlled by the bishop. In the Middle Ages Geneva thrived intermediary trade between France, Germany and Italy.

In the XIV century., As a result of the Reformation movement, the city gained its independence. Under the influence of John Calvin, who in 1541 headed the local church, it became a center of Protestantism. Calvin, whom contemporaries often called "Geneva Pope," a reform of the Church and society, introducing judicial punishment for religious offenses. This caused a sharp social conflicts that accompanied the establishment of a democratic republic. At this time, the city actually belonged to the Swiss Confederation without joining, but it formally. In 1798, Geneva, Switzerland, as well as all, French troops occupied. Fifteen years the country was ruled by France, becoming a part of the empire of Napoleon.

After his release in 1815, Switzerland has taken shape as a union of independent and sovereign cantons, introducing its own constitution, which was approved in the political neutrality of the country. At the same time Geneva joined the Swiss Confederation on the Rights of the canton, considering it the best way to preserve the independence surrounded by major European powers. In 1848, Switzerland adopted a new constitution, which served as a model for the U.S. Constitution. According to her, the cantons Switzerland became Union (currently 25), actually is a sovereign state with its own government, laws and courts. There was a separation of church and state, were adopted common measures of length and weight, as well as the single currency.

Since 1815 Congress of Vienna recognized Switzerland "eternally neutral country", here began to emerge various public international organizations. A legend called the founder of one of the most humane organizations worldwide. Henry Dunant was a medic in the Battle of Solferino. It was one of the most heinous slaughter in the centuries-old history of mankind. In hospitals reported more than 50 people every minute. Doctors worked around the clock, but it brought a paltry results. Impressed by what he saw Swiss wrote a pamphlet "Memories of Solferino", which justified the need for special neutral organization that would take on the care of the wounded and sick, regardless of their nationality, religion or political beliefs. The initiative was supported by the Henry Dunant, and in 1863 was based in Geneva, the International Red Cross (it became a symbol of Swiss flag "reverse", ie, a red cross on a white background instead of white on red). For it in 1901 to the Swiss was awarded first in the history of the Nobel Peace Prize.

In 1867 was held in Geneva Congress of the League of Peace and Freedom. After the League of Nations in 1919, was built in the Palais des Nations, which hosts this first international political organization. In August 1946 he became home to the European headquarters of the United Nations. Gradually settled in Geneva, dozens of international organizations such as the International Labour Organization, World Health Organization, World Meteorological Organization, as well as hundreds of non-governmental organizations. In Geneva is also the European Centre for Nuclear Research (CERN).

Currently, the city is