By , the Swiss plateau comprised the dominions of the houses of Savoy , Zähringer , Habsburg , and Kyburg.
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The first one was held on the occasion of the Franco-Prussian War of — The second was in response to the outbreak of the First World War in August The third mobilisation of the army took place in September in response to the German attack on Poland ; Henri Guisan was elected as the General-in-Chief. Because of its neutrality policy, the Swiss army does not currently take part in armed conflicts in other countries, but is part of some peacekeeping missions around the world.
Since the armed force department has also maintained the Onyx intelligence gathering system to monitor satellite communications. Following the end of the Cold War there have been a number of attempts to curb military activity or even abolish the armed forces altogether.
A notable referendum on the subject, launched by an anti-militarist group , was held on 26 November It was defeated with about two thirds of the voters against the proposal. The large majority of firearms kept at home are issued by the Swiss army , but ammunition is no longer issued.
Until the rather loosely coupled Confederation did not know a central political organisation, but representatives, mayors, and Landammänner met several times a year at the capital of the Lieu presiding the Confederal Diet for one year.
Until the legates met most of the time in Lucerne , but also in Zürich, Baden , Bern, Schwyz etc. From the Swabian War in onwards until Reformation, most conferences met in Zurich. Afterwards the town hall at Baden, where the annual accounts of the common people had been held regularly since , became the most frequent, but not the sole place of assembly. After Frauenfeld gradually dissolved Baden.
From , the Catholic conferences were held mostly in Lucerne, the Protestant conferences from mostly in Aarau , the one for the legitimation of the French Ambassador in Solothurn. At the same time the syndicate for the Ennetbirgischen Vogteien located in the present Ticino met from in Lugano and Locarno.
In , the federal constitution provided that details concerning the federal institutions, such as their locations, should be taken care of by the Federal Assembly BV Art. Thus on 28 November , the Federal Assembly voted in majority to locate the seat of government in Berne. In , a law RS fixed the compensations owed by the city of Bern for the federal seat. The new constitution, however, does not contain anything concerning any Federal City.
In a tripartite committee has been asked by the Swiss Federal Council to prepare the "creation of a federal law on the status of Bern as a Federal City", and to evaluate the positive and negative aspects for the city and the canton of Bern if this status were awarded. After a first report the work of this committee was suspended in by the Swiss Federal Council, and work on this subject has not resumed since. Thus as of today, no city in Switzerland has the official status either of capital or of Federal City, nevertheless Berne is commonly referred to as "Federal City" German: Switzerland has a stable, prosperous and high-tech economy and enjoys great wealth, being ranked as the wealthiest country in the world per capita in multiple rankings.
In it was ranked as the wealthiest country in the world in per capita terms with "wealth" being defined to include both financial and non-financial assets , while the Credit Suisse Global Wealth Report showed that Switzerland was the country with the highest average wealth per adult in It is the twentieth largest exporter , despite its small size.
Switzerland has the highest European rating in the Index of Economic Freedom , while also providing large coverage through public services.
The World Economic Forum's Global Competitiveness Report currently ranks Switzerland's economy as the most competitive in the world,  while ranked by the European Union as Europe's most innovative country. Switzerland is home to several large multinational corporations. Switzerland is ranked as having one of the most powerful economies in the world.
Switzerland's most important economic sector is manufacturing. Manufacturing consists largely of the production of specialist chemicals , health and pharmaceutical goods, scientific and precision measuring instruments and musical instruments. The unemployment rate increased from a low of 1.
GDP per hour worked is the world's 16th highest, at Switzerland has an overwhelmingly private sector economy and low tax rates by Western World standards; overall taxation is one of the smallest of developed countries. Switzerland is a relatively easy place to do business, currently ranking 20th of countries in the Ease of Doing Business Index.
The slow growth Switzerland experienced in the s and the early s has brought greater support for economic reforms and harmonisation with the European Union. The Swiss Federal budget had a size of Agricultural protectionism—a rare exception to Switzerland's free trade policies—has contributed to high food prices.
Education in Switzerland is very diverse because the constitution of Switzerland delegates the authority for the school system to the cantons. The minimum age for primary school is about six years in all cantons, but most cantons provide a free "children's school" starting at four or five years old.
Traditionally, the first foreign language in school was always one of the other national languages, although recently English was introduced first in a few cantons. At the end of primary school or at the beginning of secondary school , pupils are separated according to their capacities in several often three sections. The fastest learners are taught advanced classes to be prepared for further studies and the matura ,  while students who assimilate a little more slowly receive an education more adapted to their needs.
There are 12 universities in Switzerland , ten of which are maintained at cantonal level and usually offer a range of non-technical subjects. The first university in Switzerland was founded in in Basel with a faculty of medicine and has a tradition of chemical and medical research in Switzerland.
The largest university in Switzerland is the University of Zurich with nearly 25, students. In addition, there are various Universities of Applied Sciences.
In business and management studies, the University of St. As might befit a country that plays home to innumerable international organisations, the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies , located in Geneva , is not only continental Europe's oldest graduate school of international and development studies, but also widely believed to be one of its most prestigious.
Many Nobel Prize laureates have been Swiss scientists. They include the world-famous physicist Albert Einstein  in the field of physics, who developed his special relativity while working in Bern. In total, Nobel Prize winners in all fields stand in relation to Switzerland  [note 11] and the Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded nine times to organisations residing in Switzerland. Geneva and the nearby French department of Ain co-host the world's largest laboratory , CERN ,  dedicated to particle physics research.
Another important research centre is the Paul Scherrer Institute. Notable inventions include lysergic acid diethylamide LSD , diazepam Valium , the scanning tunnelling microscope Nobel prize and Velcro. Some technologies enabled the exploration of new worlds such as the pressurised balloon of Auguste Piccard and the Bathyscaphe which permitted Jacques Piccard to reach the deepest point of the world's oceans. Switzerland Space Agency, the Swiss Space Office , has been involved in various space technologies and programmes.
In addition it was one of the 10 founders of the European Space Agency in and is the seventh largest contributor to the ESA budget. In the private sector, several companies are implicated in the space industry such as Oerlikon Space  or Maxon Motors  who provide spacecraft structures. Switzerland voted against membership in the European Economic Area in a referendum in December and has since maintained and developed its relationships with the European Union EU and European countries through bilateral agreements.
In March , the Swiss people refused in a popular vote to start accession negotiations with the EU. The application for membership of the EU was formally withdrawn in , having long been frozen. The western French-speaking areas and the urban regions of the rest of the country tend to be more pro-EU, nonetheless with far from a significant share of the population. To minimise the negative consequences of Switzerland's isolation from the rest of Europe, Bern and Brussels signed seven bilateral agreements to further liberalise trade ties.
These agreements were signed in and took effect in This first series of bilateral agreements included the free movement of persons. A second series covering nine areas was signed in and has since been ratified, which includes the Schengen Treaty and the Dublin Convention besides others. In , Switzerland approved 1 billion francs of supportive investment in the poorer Southern and Central European countries in support of cooperation and positive ties to the EU as a whole.
A further referendum will be needed to approve million francs to support Romania and Bulgaria and their recent admission. The Swiss have also been under EU and sometimes international pressure to reduce banking secrecy and to raise tax rates to parity with the EU. Preparatory discussions are being opened in four new areas: On 27 November , the interior and justice ministers of European Union in Brussels announced Switzerland's accession to the Schengen passport-free zone from 12 December The land border checkpoints will remain in place only for goods movements, but should not run controls on people, though people entering the country had their passports checked until 29 March if they originated from a Schengen nation.
On 9 February , Swiss voters narrowly approved by This initiative was mostly backed by rural In December , a compromise with the European Union was attained effectively canceling quotas on EU citizens but still allowing for favorable treatment of Swiss-based job applicants. On 18 May , two anti-nuclear initiatives were turned down: Moratorium Plus , aimed at forbidding the building of new nuclear power plants The agency is supporting the watt society initiative to cut the nation's energy use by more than half by the year On 31 May the world's longest and deepest railway tunnel and the first flat, low-level route through the Alps, the It started its daily business for passenger transport on 11 December replacing the old, mountainous, scenic route over and through the St Gotthard Massif.
Switzerland has a publicly managed road network without road tolls that is financed by highway permits as well as vehicle and gasoline taxes. Gallen-Altenrhein Airport and Sion Airport. Swiss International Air Lines is the flag carrier of Switzerland. Its main hub is Zürich. Switzerland has one of the best environmental records among nations in the developed world;  it was one of the countries to sign the Kyoto Protocol in and ratified it in Switzerland developed an efficient system to recycle most recycable materials.
Switzerland also has an economic system for garbage disposal, which is based mostly on recycling and energy-producing incinerators due to a strong political will to protect the environment. In almost all Swiss municipalities, stickers or dedicated garbage bags need to be purchased that allow for identification of disposable garbage.
In , Switzerland's population slightly exceeded 8. In common with other developed countries, the Swiss population increased rapidly during the industrial era, quadrupling between and Growth has since stabilised, and like most of Europe, Switzerland faces an ageing population , albeit with consistent annual growth projected into , due mostly to immigration and a fertility rate close to replacement level.
As of [update] , resident foreigners made up Immigrants from Sri Lanka , most of them former Tamil refugees, were the largest group among people of Asian origin 6. Additionally, the figures from show that A third of this population , held Swiss citizenship. Four fifths of persons with an immigration background were themselves immigrants first generation foreigners and native-born and naturalised Swiss citizens , whereas one fifth were born in Switzerland second generation foreigners and native-born and naturalised Swiss citizens.
In the s, domestic and international institutions expressed concern about what was perceived as an increase in xenophobia , particularly in some political campaigns. In reply to one critical report, the Federal Council noted that "racism unfortunately is present in Switzerland", but stated that the high proportion of foreign citizens in the country, as well as the generally unproblematic integration of foreigners, underlined Switzerland's openness.
Switzerland has four national languages: However, federal laws and other official acts do not need to be decreed in Romansh. In , the languages most spoken at home among permanent residents aged 15 and older were Swiss German Other languages spoken at home included English 5.
The federal government is obliged to communicate in the official languages, and in the federal parliament simultaneous translation is provided from and into German, French and Italian. Aside from the official forms of their respective languages, the four linguistic regions of Switzerland also have their local dialectal forms. The role played by dialects in each linguistic region varies dramatically: The principal official languages German, French, and Italian have terms, not used outside of Switzerland, known as Helvetisms.
German Helvetisms are, roughly speaking, a large group of words typical of Swiss Standard German , which do not appear either in Standard German , nor in other German dialects. These include terms from Switzerland's surrounding language cultures German Billett  from French , from similar terms in another language Italian azione used not only as act but also as discount from German Aktion. The most frequent characteristics of Helvetisms are in vocabulary, phrases, and pronunciation, but certain Helvetisms denote themselves as special in syntax and orthography likewise.
Duden , the comprehensive German dictionary, contains about Helvetisms. Learning one of the other national languages at school is compulsory for all Swiss pupils, so many Swiss are supposed to be at least bilingual , especially those belonging to linguistic minority groups.
Swiss residents are universally required to buy health insurance from private insurance companies, which in turn are required to accept every applicant. While the cost of the system is among the highest, it compares well with other European countries in terms of health outcomes; patients have been reported as being, in general, highly satisfied with it. Between two thirds and three quarters of the population live in urban areas. Since urban development has claimed as much of the Swiss landscape as it did during the previous 2, years.
This urban sprawl does not only affect the plateau but also the Jura and the Alpine foothills  and there are growing concerns about land use. Switzerland has a dense network of towns, where large, medium and small towns are complementary. These churches, and in some cantons also the Old Catholic Church and Jewish congregations, are financed by official taxation of adherents. As of the census other Christian minority communities included Neo- Pietism 0.
Non-Christian religions are Hinduism 0. The country was historically about evenly balanced between Catholic and Protestant, with a complex patchwork of majorities over most of the country. Switzerland played an exceptional role during the Reformation as it became home to many reformers. Geneva converted to Protestantism in , just before John Calvin arrived there. In , he founded the Republic of Geneva on his own ideals. Zürich became another stronghold around the same time, with Huldrych Zwingli and Heinrich Bullinger taking the lead there.
Anabaptists Felix Manz and Conrad Grebel also operated there. One canton, Appenzell, was officially divided into Catholic and Protestant sections in The Swiss Constitution of , under the recent impression of the clashes of Catholic vs. Protestant cantons that culminated in the Sonderbundskrieg , consciously defines a consociational state , allowing the peaceful co-existence of Catholics and Protestants. A initiative calling for the complete separation of church and state was rejected by Three of Europe's major languages are official in Switzerland.
Swiss culture is characterised by diversity, which is reflected in a wide range of traditional customs. Switzerland is home to many notable contributors to literature, art, architecture, music and sciences.
In addition the country attracted a number of creative persons during time of unrest or war in Europe. Alpine symbolism has played an essential role in shaping the history of the country and the Swiss national identity.
Other areas throughout the year have a recreational culture that caters to tourism, yet the quieter seasons are spring and autumn when there are fewer visitors.
A traditional farmer and herder culture also predominates in many areas and small farms are omnipresent outside the cities. Folk art is kept alive in organisations all over the country. In Switzerland it is mostly expressed in music, dance, poetry, wood carving and embroidery.
The alphorn , a trumpet-like musical instrument made of wood, has become alongside yodeling and the accordion an epitome of traditional Swiss music. As the Confederation, from its foundation in , was almost exclusively composed of German-speaking regions, the earliest forms of literature are in German. In the 18th century, French became the fashionable language in Bern and elsewhere, while the influence of the French-speaking allies and subject lands was more marked than before.
Probably the most famous Swiss literary creation, Heidi , the story of an orphan girl who lives with her grandfather in the Alps, is one of the most popular children's books ever and has come to be a symbol of Switzerland. Her creator, Johanna Spyri — , wrote a number of other books on similar themes.
The freedom of the press and the right to free expression is guaranteed in the federal constitution of Switzerland. The SNA supplies almost all Swiss media and a couple dozen foreign media services with its news. Switzerland has historically boasted the greatest number of newspaper titles published in proportion to its population and size.
The cultural diversity accounts for a large number of newspapers. The government exerts greater control over broadcast media than print media, especially due to finance and licensing.
Radio content is produced in six central and four regional studios while the television programmes are produced in Geneva , Zürich , and Lugano. An extensive cable network also allows most Swiss to access the programmes from neighbouring countries. Skiing , snowboarding and mountaineering are among the most popular sports in Switzerland, the nature of the country being particularly suited for such activities. The latter town hosted the second Winter Olympic Games in and the fifth edition in Among the most successful skiers and world champions are Pirmin Zurbriggen and Didier Cuche.
The most prominently watched sports in Switzerland are football , ice hockey , Alpin skiing , " Schwingen ", and tennis. Actually many other headquarters of international sports federations are located in Switzerland. The Swiss Super League is the nation's professional football club league. Many Swiss also follow ice hockey and support one of the 12 teams of the National League , which is the most attended league in Europe.
The numerous lakes make Switzerland an attractive place for sailing. The largest, Lake Geneva , is the home of the sailing team Alinghi which was the first European team to win the America's Cup in and which successfully defended the title in Motorsport racecourses and events were banned in Switzerland following the Le Mans disaster with exception to events such as Hillclimbing.
In June the Swiss National Council , one house of the Federal Assembly of Switzerland , voted to overturn the ban, however the other house, the Swiss Council of States rejected the change and the ban remains in place. Traditional sports include Swiss wrestling or " Schwingen ". It is an old tradition from the rural central cantons and considered the national sport by some. Hornussen is another indigenous Swiss sport, which is like a cross between baseball and golf. Practised only among the alpine population since prehistoric times , it is recorded to have taken place in Basel in the 13th century.
It is also central to the Unspunnenfest , first held in , with its symbol the The cuisine of Switzerland is multifaceted. While some dishes such as fondue , raclette or rösti are omnipresent through the country, each region developed its own gastronomy according to the differences of climate and languages. The number of fine-dining establishments is high, particularly in western Switzerland. Chocolate has been made in Switzerland since the 18th century but it gained its reputation at the end of the 19th century with the invention of modern techniques such as conching and tempering which enabled its production on a high quality level.
Also a breakthrough was the invention of solid milk chocolate in by Daniel Peter. The Swiss are the world's largest consumers of chocolate. Due to the popularisation of processed foods at the end of the 19th century, Swiss health food pioneer Maximilian Bircher-Benner created the first nutrition-based therapy in form of the well-known rolled oats cereal dish, called Birchermüesli. The most popular alcoholic drink in Switzerland is wine. Switzerland is notable for the variety of grapes grown because of the large variations in terroirs , with their specific mixes of soil, air, altitude and light.
Swiss wine is produced mainly in Valais , Vaud Lavaux , Geneva and Ticino , with a small majority of white wines. Vineyards have been cultivated in Switzerland since the Roman era, even though certain traces can be found of a more ancient origin. The most widespread varieties are the Chasselas called Fendant in Valais and Pinot noir. The Merlot is the main variety produced in Ticino. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. This article is about the sovereign state.
For other uses, see Switzerland disambiguation. For other uses, see Swiss disambiguation and Swiss Confederation disambiguation. Early history of Switzerland and Switzerland in the Roman era. Restoration and Regeneration Switzerland and Switzerland as a federal state.
Switzerland during the World Wars and Modern history of Switzerland. Contrasted landscapes between the regions of the Matterhorn and Lake Lucerne. Foreign relations of Switzerland. Education in Switzerland and Science and technology in Switzerland. Demographics of Switzerland and Swiss people. List of Swiss people. Linguistic geography of Switzerland.
Music of Switzerland , Swiss folklore , and Alpine culture. Swiss law does not designate a capital as such, but the federal parliament and government are located in Bern, while the federal courts are located in other cities. The date of the Federal Charter of was selected in for the official celebration of the "Confederacy's th anniversary".
A resolution of the Tagsatzung of 14 September specified that the powers of the institutions provided for by the Federal Treaty would expire at the time of the constitution of the Federal Council , which took place on 16 November Schwyz is also the standard German and international name of one of the Swiss cantons.
Department Communication, University of Berne: Retrieved 7 May Als ein politisch-administratives Zentrum für den neuen Bundesstaat zu bestimmen war, verzichteten die Verfassungsväter darauf, eine Hauptstadt der Schweiz zu bezeichnen und formulierten stattdessen in Artikel Quartals " [Recent monthly and quarterly figures: Retrieved 9 October Switzerland's population PDF official report.
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Cartography by TomTom, swisstopo, osm. Archived from the original on 25 March Retrieved 27 March Die interaktive Statistikdatenbank" in German and French. Swiss Federal Statistical Office. Archived from the original on 21 September Physical Geography of Switzerland".
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Dezember Stand am 1. The Swiss Federal Council. Archived from the original on 28 December Retrieved 6 December Archived from the original on 10 October Retrieved 11 May Retrieved 28 February Top 10 countries with the highest average wealth per adult in Archived 14 November at the Wayback Machine.. Archived from the original on 29 July Retrieved 10 October Switzerland Archived 1 September at the Wayback Machine.
Archived from the original on 24 April Retrieved 28 April Archived PDF from the original on 26 February Maastricht Economic and social Research and training centre on Innovation and Technology, 1 February Archived from the original on 17 February Retrieved 22 July Archived from the original on 12 March Retrieved 13 March Archived from the original on 16 January Retrieved 17 December Associated Press 8 January Archived from the original on 14 December Archived from the original on 8 July The plant is thalloid in form , and exhibits indeterminate growth.
It is profusely branched, and 1 cell -layer thick. Because of its lack of morphological characters , it has been difficult to determine its systematic position. Gametangia are rarely produced, but they are clearly fern-like. The archegonia have short necks and the venter base is partly sunk into the thallus.
The antheridia are like those of polypodialean ferns in that they consist of a basal cell, a ring cell, and a cap cell. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Tan; Volker Buchbender; Robbin C. Plant Systematics and Evolution. Retrieved from " https: Lomariopsis Undescribed plant species. Articles with 'species' microformats Articles containing German-language text Taxonbar pages without Wikidata taxon IDs Taxonbars on possible non-taxon pages.
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