The Czech Republic – maturitní otázka z angličtiny (5)

 

Otázka: The Czech Republic

Jazyk: Angličtina

Přidal(a): Jindrisekfou

 

 

 

 

The CZ: history, politics, geography, population, places of interest

Geography

– located in Central Europe – “heart of Europe”

– borders with: Germany, Poland, Slovakia, Austria

– land-locked country = there is no border with sea (borders are mostly mountains)

– area: 78 866 km2

– capital: Prague (also the biggest city – in Bohemia)

– landscape:

– highland: mountains ranges border much of the country (Krušné hory, Krkonoše, Beskydy,…)

– lowland: plains (valleys) around the biggest rivers (Vltava, Labe, Dyje, Morava,…)

– rolling hills (western part of the CZ)

– climate: humid continental climate

– warm summers that are sometimes hot, cold winters with snow

– rainfall generally during the summer months

– divided to 3 regions (historical parts): Bohemia, Moravia, Silesia

– the highest point: Sněžka (1 602 m above sea level) in Krkonoše

– rivers:  Labe/ Elbe – the biggest river, empties to the North sea

Vltava – tributary of Elbe, numerous dams (Lipno, Orlík, Slapy,… – cascades of dams), the longest river, tributaries:

Sázava, Berounka

Morava – tributaries (Dyje, Jihlava), empties to Dunaj – Black sea

– ponds (south Bohemia) – Jakub Krčín; the biggest pond is Rožmberk

– lakes: in Šumava – Čertovo, Černé (deepest and biggest in the Bohemian Forest)

– national parks: Šumava (biggest), krkonoše, Poddyjí, České Švýcarsko

– natural wonders: The Czech paradise, „rock town“ in Prachov rocks, The Boubín virgin forest, Koněprusy caves, Macocha

Abyss, the Jeseník mountains,Šumava mountains – swamps

 

Population

– population: 10 500 000 (1 000 000 in Prague)

– ethnic groups: Czech – from Slavic tribes (from 5th century) – Bohemians, Moravians (dominant) 94%

Slovaks 2%

Ukrainians, Vietnamese, Germans… 4%

– official language: Czech

– 74% people live in urban areas

 

History

  • The Celts – first settlement – 3rd century BC (the Neolithic era)
  • The Premyslids – the Bohemian state – 9th century
  • the Middle ages – important power in central Europe, part of the Holy Roman Empire
  • religious wars
  • 14th century – Charles IV: one of the best and most important rulers

– wise and highly-educated person and a culture – lover

– Prague become the royal seat

– he built the famous Charles Bridge, Karlštejn Castle, the first Czech University

  • 15th century – Hussite movement marked by the reformation teaching of Master John Huss

                         – Hussites wars (lead by Jan Žižka z Trocnova)

  • 17th century – Thirty Years´ War
  • 1526 – Bohemia came under the Habsburg influence& became a part of Austria-Hungary
  • 1620 – Battle of the White Mountain – country was germanized
  • 1918 – the independent republic of Czechoslovakiawas established
    • president – T.G. Masaryk
    • composed of Bohemia, Moravia, Silesia, Ruthenia
    • 2nd world war – The German dictator Hitler wanted The Czechoslovakia and he succeeded in his plans through the
    • Munich Agreement that gave him the majority of the German speaking Sudetenland
    • 1945 – Czechoslovakia was liberated by the Red and US armies
    • 1948 – Czechoslovakia came under Soviet influence – socialist era
    • 1989 – political freedom through the Velvet Revolution
      • end of communist era
      • rebellions
      • January 1st 1993 – the Czech republic
      • May 1st 2004 – member of the European Union


PERSONALITIES

  • JAN ÁMOS KOMENSKÝ (Comenius)
  • o teacher, educator, writer
  • o considered as the father of modern education
  • o Teacher of the Nations
  • o 1592-1670, born in Nivnice, buried in Naarden, Netherlands
  • o lived and worked all around Europe – Sweden, Poland, Transylvania, Holy Roman Empire, England, the Netherlands
  • o emphasis on practical education, system of schools (kindergarten, elementary school, secondary school, college, and university), 45min long lessons
  • o Orbis Pictus (“The Visible World in Pictures”)
  • o Didactica magna (“The Great Didactic”)
  • o Labyrinth of the world and Paradise of the hearth

 

  • KAREL ČAPEK
  • o one of the most influential Czech writers of the 20th century
  • o born in Malé Svatoňovice
  • o intelligence, humour, wide variety of subjects, interesting and precise descriptions of reality, excellent work with the Czech language
  • o expressing fear of dictatorship, violence, and the unlimited power of corporations
  • o inventor of the word robot (1st used in R.U.R. = Rossum’s Universal Robots)
  • o The Macropulos Affair, Krakatit, War with the Newts
  • o anti-Nazi plays – The White Disease, The Mother

 

  • MILOŠ FORMAN
  • o born in Čáslav
  • o studied FAMU in Prague
  • o director – Hair, Amadeus, One flew over the cuckoo’s nest


Government

– the CZ consists of 13 regions and the region of the capital city of Prague (14 in total)

– the currency is Czech crown

– a parliamentary democracy ( from 1993) with two houses: Chamber of Deputies – lower, 200 members (for 4-year term)

Senate – upper house, 81 members (for 6 year term)

– parliament – – legislative power; govermetn – executiv power; supreme court – judicial power

– a head of government is the Prime Minister – Petr Nečas

-a head of state is the President of the Republic

– was elected by parliament every 5 years, now is chosen by people in direct elections

–  the current president is Václav Klaus, who is popular for his controversial opinions

– he appoints the PM

– all citizens over the age of 18 are eligible to vote

– the Czech Republic became a member of NATO in 1995 and member of EU in 2004

– symbols:   the flag consists of two equal horizontal bands of white (top) and red with a blue triangle

Czech anthem is Kde domov můj

Czech motto: “Truth prevails/ wins”

interests: beer, wine (Moravia), cuisine (unhealthy), ice-hockey

 

ECONOMY :

The Czech economy, after more than 40 years under a state monopoly system, is undergoing changes to reconstruct it into prosperous free market system with the help of privatization. The country tries to follow the principles of democracy.

Industries : the most important part of our economy is engineering, other important branches are metallurgical and chemical industries and tourism.

Natural resources : The Czech Republic is heavily depended on imported oil and natural gas. The country´s source of energy is large deposits of lignite and coal (Ostrava, Most, Kladno).

Agriculture : Some 40 per cent of land in the Czech Republic is cultivated. Agriculture plays a small role in the nation´s export industry. The principal crops on the Czech Republic are barley, wheat, corn, sugar, beets and potatoes. Typical feature of south Moravia is wine farming, which is possible of its moist climate. Almost every house has its wine cellar. In north Moravia is an important agricultural region called Haná.

Manufacturing : Manufacturing is a leading component of the CZ´s gross domestic product – steelworks, glass industry, jewellery.

Places of interest

“Czech Republic is a country with a nice nature, rich culture and history. The combination of natural beauties and numerous wonderful buildings coming from the past centuries, with cultural heritage make the Czech Republic a popular destination for tourists. Apart from the capital – Prague – the country has many more beautiful towns and places worth seeing.”

– many towns have been restored and designated historical town reserves – their monuments may include churches, town

buildings, medieval fortifications, town castles, places and chateaux with their own gardens

 

  • Prague

– the most visited destination in CZ

– capital on the banks of the Vltava

– the city’s origins date back to the 9th century … biggest development – Charles IV

– 5 historical districts: The Old Town, The New Town, the Little Quarter (The Lesser Town) and Hradčany

 

  • Český Krumlov

– small city in the South Bohemian Region

– best known for the architecture and art of the historic old town and Český Krumlov Castle

– historical centre of town – UNESCO world heritage site

 

  • Telč

– in southern Moravia

– founded in 13th century as a royal water fort

– renaissance chateau with an English style park

– town square – well-conserved renaissance and baroque buildings – UNESCO world heritage site

 

  • Karlovy Vary, Mariánské Lázně, Františkovy Lázně

– west Bohemia Triangle of spa towns

– relaxation, colonnade

 

  • Tábor
  • České Budějovice
  • Písek
  • Domažlice

 

Monuments:

  • Karlštejn Castle

– large gothic castle, founded 1348 AD by Charles IV.

– place for safekeeping the Imperial regalia and Bohemian coronation jewels (now in Prague Castle)

located about 30km southwest of Prague

one of most famous and most frequently castles in the CZ

-legend: no woman could have visited the castle

 

  • The Macocha Abyss

– sinkhole in the Moravian Karst cave system

– located north of the city of Brno

– the Punkva River flows through it

– about 138.7 meters deep and also the deepest of its kind (light hole type) in Central Europe

– it is a popular tourist attraction for casual visitors to the region, in addition to cavers and advanced technical

divers

 

  • Ještěd

– the highest mountain peak (1,012 meter) of the Ještěd-Kozákov Ridge

views into Germany and Poland

1966 and 1973, a futuristic hotel, with a 100 meter-high television tower, was built that was designed by the

architect Karel Hubacek

a lookout tower, transmission tower, hotel and restaurant, two ski jumping hills

 

  • Říp






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