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Location of Czech Republic within Europe

The Czech Republic, also known as Czechia, is a landlocked country in Central Europe. Historically known as Bohemia, it is bordered by Austria to the south, Germany to the west, Poland to the northeast, and Slovakia to the southeast. The Czech Republic has a hilly landscape that covers an area of 78,871 square kilometers (30,452 sq mi) with a mostly temperate continental and oceanic climate. The capital and largest city is Prague; other major cities and urban areas include Brno, Ostrava, Plzeň and Liberec.

The Duchy of Bohemia was founded in the late 9th century under Great Moravia. It was formally recognized as an Imperial State of the Holy Roman Empire in 1002 and became a kingdom in 1198. Following the Battle of Mohács in 1526, the whole Crown of Bohemia was gradually integrated into the Habsburg monarchy. The Protestant Bohemian Revolt led to the Thirty Years' War. After the Battle of the White Mountain, the Habsburgs consolidated their rule. With the dissolution of the Holy Empire in 1806, the Crown lands became part of the Austrian Empire.

In the 19th century, the Czech lands became more industrialized, and in 1918 most of it became part of the First Czechoslovak Republic following the collapse of Austria-Hungary after World War I. Czechoslovakia was the only country in Central and Eastern Europe to remain a parliamentary democracy during the entirety of the interwar period. After the Munich Agreement in 1938, Nazi Germany systematically took control over the Czech lands. Czechoslovakia was restored in 1945 and became an Eastern Bloc communist state following a coup d'état in 1948. Attempts to liberalize the government and economy were suppressed by a Soviet-led invasion of the country during the Prague Spring in 1968. In November 1989, the Velvet Revolution ended communist rule in the country, and on 1 January 1993, Czechoslovakia was dissolved, with its constituent states becoming the independent states of the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

The Czech Republic is a unitary parliamentary republic and developed country with an advanced, high-income social market economy. It is a welfare state with a European social model, universal health care and free-tuition university education. It ranks 12th in the UN inequality-adjusted human development and 24th in the World Bank Human Capital Index. It ranks as the 9th safest and most peaceful country and 31st in democratic governance. The Czech Republic is a member of NATO, the European Union, OECD, OSCE, and the Council of Europe. (Full article...)

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Bedřich Fritta's drawing of the barracks
Bedřich Fritta's drawing of the barracks

Theresienstadt Ghetto was established by the SS during World War II in the fortress town of Terezín, in the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia (German-occupied Czechoslovakia). Theresienstadt served two main purposes: a waystation to the extermination camps, and a "retirement settlement" for elderly and prominent Jews to mislead their communities about the Final Solution. Its conditions were deliberately engineered to hasten the death of its prisoners, and the ghetto also served a propaganda role. Unlike other ghettos, the exploitation of forced labor was not economically significant.

The ghetto was established by the transportation of Czech Jews in November 1941. The first German and Austrian Jews arrived in June 1942; Dutch and Danish Jews came at the beginning in 1943, and prisoners of a wide variety of nationalities were sent to Theresienstadt in the last months of the war. About 33,000 people died at Theresienstadt, mostly from malnutrition and disease. More than 88,000 people were held there for months or years before being deported to extermination camps and other killing sites; the Jewish Council's (Judenrat) role in choosing those to be deported has attracted significant controversy. Including 4,000 of the deportees who survived, the total number of survivors was around 23,000. (Full article...)

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Kinský with Saturn Ramenskoye in 2009
Kinský with Saturn Ramenskoye in 2009

Antonín Kinský (born 31 May 1975) is a Czech former professional footballer who played as a goalkeeper. He played club football in the Czech Republic for nine seasons, winning the national league in 2002 with FC Slovan Liberec. He subsequently moved to Russia, where he played for Saturn Ramenskoye. During his seven years in Russia, he played 200 competitive games and was recognised as the Russian Premier League's best goalkeeper in the 2007 season.

Kinský played for his country on five occasions. He was part of the Czech Republic squad at UEFA Euro 2004 and the 2006 FIFA World Cup, although he played at neither tournament. (Full article...)

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Czech lands: BohemiaMoraviaCzech Silesia

History: Unetice cultureBoiiMarcomanniSamoGreat MoraviaPřemyslid dynastyLands of the Bohemian CrownCzech lands (1526–1648)1648–18671867–1918)CzechoslovakiaCzech Republic

Geography: LakesProtected areasRegionsRivers

Law: JudiciaryLaw enforcementSupreme Court of the Czech Republic

Politics: Administrative divisionsCabinetConstitutionElectionsForeign relationsMilitaryParliamentPolitical partiesPresidentPrime Minister

Economy: BanksCzech korunaEnergyOil and gas depositsStock ExchangeTourismTransport

Culture: ArchitectureArtCinemaCuisineDemographicsEducationLanguageLiteratureMediaMusicPhilosophyProstitutionPublic holidaysReligionSportTelevisionVideo gaming

Symbols: FlagCoat of armsNational anthem (Kde domov můj?)

Lists: Outline of the Czech RepublicIndex of Czech Republic-related articles

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