List of largest empires

The Roman Empire at its territorial greatest extent in 117 AD, the time of Trajan's death (with its vassals in pink)

Several empires in world history have been contenders for the largest of all time, depending on definition and mode of measurement.

- List of largest empires

53 related topics

Relevance

Empire

About the political and historical term.

The Roman Empire at its territorial greatest extent in 117 AD, the time of Trajan's death (with its vassals in pink)
Diachronic map of the main empires of the modern era (1492–1945).
Map showing the four empires of Eurasia in the 2nd century AD
All areas of the world that were once part of the Portuguese Empire. The Portuguese established in the early 16th century together with the Spanish Empire the first global empire and trade network.
Al Udeid Air Base in Qatar

The Sui, Tang and Song empires had the world's largest economy and were the most technologically advanced during their time; the Great Yuan Empire was the world's ninth largest empire by total land area; while the Great Ming Empire is famous for the seven maritime expeditions led by Zheng He.

Abu Bakr

The founder and first caliph of the Rashidun Caliphate ruling from June 632 until his death.

Abū Bakr al-Ṣiddīq's name in Arabic calligraphy
The Mount Thawr in Mecca, where Abu Bakr and Muhammad refuged for three days
Modern view of Saqifah where Abu Bakr was elected
Abu Bakr's caliphate at its territorial peak in August 634.
The Green Dome in Al-Masjid an-Nabawi where Abu Bakr is buried
The name of Abu Bakr, inscribed in Islamic calligraphy at the Hagia Sophia in Turkey

This would set in motion a historical trajectory, continued later on by Umar and Uthman, that in just a few short decades would lead to one of the largest empires in history.

Assyria

Major ancient Mesopotamian civilization which existed as a city-state from the 21st century BC to the 14th century BC and then as a territorial state and eventually an empire from the 14th century BC to the 7th century BC.

Map showing the ancient Assyrian heartland (red) and the extent of the Neo-Assyrian Empire in the 7th century BC (orange)
75px
Head of a female figure, dating to the Akkadian period (c. undefined 2334–2154 BC), found at Assur
Ruins of the Old Assyrian trading colony at Kültepe
Partial relief of Tiglath-Pileser III ((r. undefined – undefined)745–727 BC), under whom the Neo-Assyrian Empire was consolidated, centralized and significantly expanded
Detail of a stele in the style of the Neo-Assyrian royal steles erected in Assur in the 2nd century AD (under Parthian rule) by the local ruler Rʻuth-Assor
Line-drawing of a royal seal of the Old Assyrian king Erishum I ((r. undefined – undefined)c. undefined 1974–1934 BC). The seated ruler is thought to represent the god Ashur, with Erishum being the bald figure being led towards him.
Stele of the Neo-Assyrian king Ashurnasirpal II ((r. undefined – undefined)883–859 BC)
Ruins of one of the entrances of the Northwest Palace at Nimrud (Assyrian capital 879–706 BC), destroyed by the Islamic State in 2015
Stele of Bel-harran-beli-usur, a palace herald, made in the reign of the Neo-Assyrian king Shalmaneser IV ((r. undefined – undefined)783–773 BC)
Stele of Ili-ittija, governor of Libbi-ali, Kar-Tukulti-Ninurta, Ekallatum, Itu, and Ruqahu, c. undefined 804 BC
20th-century illustration of a Neo-Assyrian spearman
Neo-Assyrian relief depicting some Assyrian individuals in a procession
Relief depicting Naqi'a, mother of Esarhaddon ((r. undefined – undefined)681–669 BC) and one of the most influential women in Assyrian history
Old Assyrian cuneiform tablet from Kültepe recording the repayment of a loan, impressed with four different cylinder seals
7th-century BC relief depicting Ashurbanipal ((r. undefined – undefined)669–631 BC) and two royal attendants
Old Assyrian cuneiform tablet containing an account of a caravan journey
9th-century AD piece of papyrus with Syriac language writing
19th-century reconstruction of Nineveh (Assyrian capital 705–612 BC)
20th-century illustration of decorative patterns found in ancient Assyrian reliefs and garments
Tablet from the Library of Ashurbanipal containing a portion of the Epic of Gilgamesh
Early 20th-century archbishop of the Assyrian Church of the East with entourage
Statue of a praying woman, 25th century BC
Wall relief probably depicting Ashur, 21st–16th century BC
Cylinder seal and impression, 14th–13th century BC
Temple altar of Tukulti-Ninurta I, 13th century BC
Statue of a nude woman, 11th century BC
Glazed tile depicting a king and attendants, 9th century BC
The Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser III, 9th century BC
Statue of Shalmaneser III, 9th century BC
Furniture ornament, 9th–8th century BC
Crown of Queen Hama, 8th century BC
Giant lamassu, 8th century BC
Portion of the Lion Hunt of Ashurbanipal, 7th century BC

Assyria was at its strongest in the Neo-Assyrian period, when the Assyrian army was the strongest military power in the world and the Assyrians ruled the largest empire then yet assembled in world history, spanning from parts of modern-day Iran in the east to Egypt in the west.

Arabs

Ethnic group mainly inhabiting the Arab world in Western Asia, North Africa, the Horn of Africa, and the western Indian Ocean islands (including the Comoros).

The Namara inscription, an Arabic epitaph of Imru' al-Qais, son of "Amr, king of all the Arabs", inscribed in Nabataean script. Basalt, dated in 7 Kislul, 223, viz. 7 December 328 CE. Found at Nimreh in the Hauran (Southern Syria).
Traditional Qahtanite genealogy
Nabataean trade routes in Pre-Islamic Arabia.
Assyrian relief depicting battle with camel riders, from Kalhu (Nimrud) Central Palace, Tiglath Pileser III, 728 BCE, British Museum
Arab soldier (Old Persian cuneiform: 𐎠𐎼𐎲𐎠𐎹, Arabāya) of the Achaemenid army, circa 480 BCE. Xerxes I tomb relief.
Life-size bronze bust sculpture of historian Ibn Khaldun.
Façade of Al Khazneh in Petra, Jordan, built by the Nabateans.
The ruins of Palmyra. The Palmyrenes were a mix of Arabs, Amorites and Arameans.
Fragment of a wall painting showing a Kindite king, 1st century CE
The Near East in 565, showing the Lakhmids and their neighbors
The imperial province of Arabia Petraea in 117–138 CE
Age of the Caliphs
Tombstone of Muhammad (Left), Abu Bakr and Umar (right), Medina, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
The Great Mosque of Kairouan in Kairouan, Tunisia was founded in 670 by the Arab general Uqba ibn Nafi; it is the oldest mosque in the Maghreb and represents an architectural testimony of the Arab conquest of North Africa
The Umayyad Mosque in Damascus, built in 715, is one of the oldest, largest and best preserved mosques in the world
The Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem, constructed during the reign of Abd al Malik
Mustansiriya University in Baghdad
Scholars at an Abbasid library in Baghdad. Maqamat of al-Hariri Illustration, 123.
Harun al-Rashid receiving a delegation sent by Charlemagne
Al-Azhar Mosque, commissioned by the Fatimid Caliph Al-Mu'izz for the newly established capital city of Cairo in 969
Arabesque pattern behind hunters on ivory plaque, 11th–12th century, Egypt
Soldiers of the Arab Army in the Arabian Desert carrying the Flag of the Arab Revolt
A map of the Arab world
The Near East in 565, showing the Ghassanids, Lakhmids, Kinda and Hejaz
Arabian tribes before the spread of Islam
Post-card of Emir Mejhem ibn Meheid, chief of the Anaza tribe near Aleppo with his sons after being decorated with the Croix de Légion d'honneur on 20 September 1920
Old Bedouin man and his wife in Egypt, 1918
Commander and Amir of Mascara, Banu Hilal
Population density of the Arab world in 2008.
An overview of the different Arabic dialects
Arabic-speaking peoples in the Middle East and North Africa
Syrian immigrants in New York City, as depicted in 1895
Amel Bent, a French-born Maghrebi pop singer
The Arab American National Museum in Dearborn, Michigan, the United States of America
Georgia and the Caucasus in 1060, during the final decline of the emirate
Kechimalai Mosque, Beruwala. One of the oldest mosques in Sri Lanka. It is believed to be the site where the first Arabs landed in Sri Lanka.
Baggara belt
Bas-relief: Nemesis, Allāt and the dedicator
The holiest place in Islam, the Kaaba in Al-Haram Mosque, is located in Mecca, the Hejazi region of Saudi Arabia
A Greek Orthodox Church during a snow storm in Amman, Jordan
An Abbasid-era Arabic manuscript
Arabic calligraphy
Aladdin flying away with two people, from the Arabian Nights, c. 1900
A giraffe from the Kitāb al-Ḥayawān (Book of the Animals), an important scientific treatise by the 9th century Arab writer Al-Jahiz.
Illustration from Kitab al-Aghani (Book of Songs), by Abu al-Faraj al-Isfahani. The 14th-century historian Ibn Khaldun called the Book of Songs the register of the Arabs.
Self portrait of renowned Lebanese poet/writer Khalil Gibran
A large plate of Mezes in Petra, Jordan
Mosaic and arabesque on a wall of the Myrtle court in Alhambra, Granada.
Arabic miniature depicting Al-Harith from Maqamat of al-Hariri
The Mosque-Cathedral of Córdoba, built by Abd al Rahman I in 987
Bayad plays the "Oud to The Lady," from the Bayad & Riyad, Arabic tale
Umm Kulthum was an internationally famous Egyptian singer.
Al-Lat was the god of Arabs before Islam; It was found in Ta'if
Averroes, founder of the Averroism school of philosophy, was influential in the rise of secular thought in Western Europe.
Ibn Arabi, one of the most celebrated mystic-philosophers in Islamic history.
Hevelius's Selenographia, showing Alhazen [sic] representing reason, and Galileo representing the senses. Alhazen has been described as the "world's first true scientist".
Albategnius's Kitāb az-Zīj was one of the most influential books in medieval astronomy
The Tabula Rogeriana, drawn by al-Idrisi for Roger II of Sicily in 1154, is one of the most advanced ancient world maps. Modern consolidation, created from the 70 double-page spreads of the original atlas.
Henna tattoo in Morocco

The Arabs forged the Rashidun, Umayyad, Abbasid, and Fatimid caliphates, whose borders at their zenith reached southern France in the west, China in the east, Anatolia in the north, and Sudan in the south, forming one of the largest land empires in history.

British Empire

Composed of the dominions, colonies, protectorates, mandates, and other territories ruled or administered by the United Kingdom and its predecessor states.

A replica of the Matthew, John Cabot's ship used for his second voyage to the New World
African slaves working in 17th-century Virginia, by an unknown artist, 1670
Fort St. George was founded at Madras in 1639.
Robert Clive's victory at the Battle of Plassey established the East India Company as a military as well as a commercial power.
British territories in the Americas, 1763–1776, extending much further than the Thirteen Colonies on the Atlantic coast
James Cook's mission was to find the alleged southern continent Terra Australis.
The Battle of Waterloo in 1815 ended in the defeat of Napoleon and marked the beginning of Pax Britannica.
An 1876 political cartoon of Benjamin Disraeli (1804–1881) making Queen Victoria Empress of India. The caption reads "New crowns for old ones!"
British cavalry charging against Russian forces at Balaclava in 1854
The Rhodes Colossus—Cecil Rhodes spanning "Cape to Cairo"
A poster urging men from countries of the British Empire to enlist
The British Empire at its territorial peak in 1921
George V with British and Dominion prime ministers at the 1926 Imperial Conference
During the Second World War, the Eighth Army was made up of units from many different countries in the British Empire and Commonwealth; it fought in North African and Italian campaigns.
About 14.5 million people lost their homes as a result of the partition of India in 1947.
Eden's decision to invade Egypt in 1956 revealed Britain's post-war weaknesses.
British decolonisation in Africa. By the end of the 1960s, all but Rhodesia (the future Zimbabwe) and the South African mandate of South West Africa (Namibia) had achieved recognised independence.
The fourteen British Overseas Territories
Cricket being played in India. Sports developed in Britain or the former empire continue to be viewed and played.

At its height it was the largest empire in history and, for over a century, was the foremost global power.

History of China

The earliest known written records of the history of China date from as early as 1250 BC, from the Shang dynasty (c.

Approximate territories controlled by the various dynasties and states throughout the history of China
Timeline of Chinese history
Bronze ding (cauldron) with human faces
The Warring States. Qin is shown in pink
Map showing the expansion of Han dynasty in the 2nd century BC
Three Kingdoms in 262, on the eve of the conquest of Shu, Wei, and Wu
Mongol successor khanates
Qianlong Emperor
Li Hongzhang, a Chinese politician, general and diplomat of the late Qing dynasty.
The national flag of the Great Qing from 1862 to 1889. (Triangular version)
The national flag of the Great Qing from 1889 to 1912.
Flag of the First Guangzhou Uprising
Nanjing Road during Xinhai Revolution, 1911
Beijing college students rallied during the May Fourth Movement, dissatisfied with Article 156 of the Treaty of Versailles for China (Shandong Problem).
The flag of the Republic of China from 1912 to 1928.
The flag of the Republic of China from 1928 to now.
The People's Liberation Army enters Beijing in the Pingjin Campaign
Chairman Mao Zedong proclaiming the establishment of the People's Republic of China in 1949.
People's Republic of China 10th Anniversary Parade in Beijing
The flag of the People's Republic of China since 1949.

The Qing ruled more than one-third of the world's population, and had the largest economy in the world.

History of Spain

The history of Spain dates to the Antiquity when the pre-Roman peoples of the Mediterranean coast of the Iberian Peninsula made contact with the Greeks and Phoenicians and the first writing systems known as Paleohispanic scripts were developed.

Ethnology of the Iberian Peninsula c. 200 BC
Illustration depicting the (now lost) Luzaga's Bronze, an example of the Celtiberian script.
The Iberian Peninsula in the 3rd century BC.
Roman Empire, 3rd century
The greatest extent of the Visigothic Kingdom of Toulouse, c. 500, showing Territory lost after Vouillé in light orange
Visigothic King Roderic haranguing his troops before the Battle of Guadalete
Detail of the votive crown of Recceswinth from the Treasure of Guarrazar, (Toledo-Spain) hanging in Madrid. The hanging letters spell [R]ECCESVINTHVS REX OFFERET [King R. offers this].
Visigothic church, San Pedro de la Nave. Zamora. Spain
Visigothic Hispania and its regional divisions in 700, prior to the Muslim conquest
al-Andalus at its greatest extent, 720
The Christian kingdoms of Hispania and the Islamic Almohad empire c. 1210
A battle of the Reconquista from the Cantigas de Santa Maria
The title page of the Gramática de la lengua castellana (1492), the first grammar of a modern European language to be published.
Wedding portrait of the Catholic Monarchs
Christopher Columbus leads expedition to the New World, 1492, sponsored by Spanish crown
Taking of Oran by Francisco Jiménez de Cisneros in 1509.
Anachronous map of the Spanish Empire
The Conquest of Tenochtitlán
The Port of Seville in the late 16th century. Seville became one of the most populous and cosmopolitan European cities after the expeditions to the New World.
Charles I of Spain (better known in the English-speaking world as the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V) was the most powerful European monarch of his day.
Battle of St. Quentin
A map of Europe in 1648, after the Peace of Westphalia
View of Toledo by El Greco, between 1596 and 1600
Louis XIV of France and Philip IV of Spain at the Meeting on the Isle of Pheasants in June 1660, part of the process to put an end to the Franco-Spanish War (1635–59).
Recognition of the Duke of Anjou as King of Spain, under the name of Philip V, November 16, 1700
An 18th-century map of the Iberian Peninsula
The Battle of Cape Passaro, 11 August 1718
El paseo de las Delicias, a 1784-1785 painting by Ramón Bayeu depicting a meeting of members of the aristocracy in the aforementioned location.
The Second of May 1808 was the beginning of the popular Spanish resistance against Napoleon.
The Third of May 1808, Napoleon's troops shoot hostages. Goya
The promulgation of the Constitution of 1812, oil painting by Salvador Viniegra.
The pro-independence forces delivered a crushing defeat to the royalists and secured the independence of Peru in the 1824 battle of Ayacucho.
Execution of Torrijos and his men in 1831. Ferdinand VII took repressive measures against the liberal forces in his country.
Battle of the First Carlist War, by Francisco de Paula Van Halen
Episode of the 1854 Spanish Revolution in the Puerta del Sol, by Eugenio Lucas Velázquez.
Members of the provisional government after the 1868 Glorious Revolution, by Jean Laurent.
Proclamation of the Spanish Republic in Madrid
1894 satirical cartoon depicting the tacit accord for seamless government change (turnismo) between the leaders of two dynastic parties (Sagasta and Cánovas del Castillo), with the country being lied in an allegorical fashion.
The explosion of the USS Maine (ACR-1) launched the Spanish–American War in April 1898
The successful 1925 Alhucemas landing turned the luck in the Rif War towards Spain's favour.
Celebrations of the proclamation of the 2nd Republic in Barcelona.
People's militias attacking on a Rebel position in Somosierra in the early stages of the war.
Advance of Italian tankettes during the Battle of Guadalajara.
Two women and a man during the siege of the Alcázar
Ruins of Guernica
Franco visiting Tolosa in 1948
Francisco Franco and his appointed successor Prince Juan Carlos de Borbón.
Felipe González signing the treaty of accession to the European Economic Community on 12 June 1985.
Valladolid in 1986. A OTAN NO banner can be read on the highrise building

The Spanish Empire was the first global empire.

History of Islam

The history of Islam concerns the political, social, economic, military, and cultural developments of the Islamic civilization.

Page from the Sanaa manuscript. The "subtexts" revealed using UV light are very different from today's standard edition of the Quran. The German scholar of Quranic palaeography Gerd R. Puin affirms that these textual variants indicate an evolving text. A similar view has been expressed by the British historian of Near Eastern studies Lawrence Conrad regarding the early biographies of Muhammad; according to him, Islamic views on the birth date of Muhammad until the 8 century CE had a diversity of 85 years span.
Arabia united under Muhammad (7th century CE)
Close-up of one leave showing chapter division and verse-end markings written in Hijazi script from the Birmingham Quran manuscript, dated between c. 568 and 645, held by the University of Birmingham.
Empire of the Rāshidūn Caliphate at its peak under the third rāshidūn caliph ʿUthmān (654 CE)
The rāshidūn caliphs used symbols of the Sassanid Empire (crescent-star, fire temple, depictions of the last Sasanian emperor Khosrow II) by adding the Arabic expression bismillāh on their coins, instead of designing new ones.
Coin of the Rāshidūn Caliphate (632–675 CE). Pseudo-Byzantine type with depictions of the Byzantine emperor Constans II holding the cross-tipped staff and globus cruciger.
Eastern territories of the Byzantine Empire invaded by the Arab Muslims during the Arab–Byzantine wars (650 CE)
Territories of the Umayyad Caliphate
The Mosque of Uqba (Great Mosque of Kairouan), founded by the Umayyad general Uqba Ibn Nafi in 670, is the oldest and most prestigious mosque in the Muslim West; its present form dates from the 9th century, Kairouan, Tunisia.
Umayyad army invades France after conquering the Iberian Peninsula
Abbasid caliphate
Gold dinar of Abbasid caliph Al-Mansur (r. 754–775) the founder of Baghdad, patron of art and science
An Arabic manuscript written under the second half of the Abbasid Era.
Regional powers born out of the fragmentation of the Abbasid caliphate
Minaret at the Great Mosque of Samarra.
Dirham of Al-Muttaqi
Fatimid Caliphate
Ayyubid empire
The Mongol ruler, Ghazan, depicted studying the Quran inside a tent. Illustration of Rashid-ad-Din, first quarter of the 14th century, Staatsbibliothek, Berlin.
Goharshad Mosque built by the Timurid Empire
Tamerlane chess, invented by Amir Timur. The pieces approximate the appearance of the chess pieces in 14th century Persia.
Map of the Mamluk Sultanate (in red) and the Mongol Ilkhanate (in blue) (1250–1382)
The interiors of the Alhambra in Granada, Spain decorated with arabesque designs.
The exterior of the Mezquita.
The Great Mosque of Kairouan also known as the Mosque of Uqba was established in 670 by the Arab general and conqueror Uqba ibn Nafi, it is the oldest mosque in the Maghreb, situated in the city of Kairouan, Tunisia.
Ruins of Zeila (Saylac), Somalia.
The Great Mosque of Kilwa
Qutub Minar is the world's tallest brick minaret, commenced by Qutb-ud-din Aybak of the Slave dynasty; 1st dynasty of the Delhi Sultanate.
Grand Mosque of Demak, the first Muslim state in Java
The Huaisheng Mosque of China, built by Sa'd ibn Abi Waqqas.
Osman I, founder of the Ottoman Empire. Ottoman miniature, 1579–1580, Topkapı Sarayı Müzesi, Istanbul.
The Ottoman Empire and sphere of influence at its greatest extent (1683)
The Süleymaniye Mosque (Süleymaniye Camii) in Istanbul was built on the order of sultan Suleiman the Magnificent by the Ottoman architect Mimar Sinan in 1557.
The Safavid Empire at its greatest extent under Shah Ismail I (1501-1524)
Shah Suleiman I and his courtiers, Isfahan, 1670. Painter is Ali Qoli Jabbador, and is kept at The St. Petersburg Institute of Oriental Studies in Russia, ever since it was acquired by Tsar Nicholas II. Note the two Georgian figures with their names at the top left.
Mughal India at its greatest extent, at the sharia apogee of Muhammad Aurangzeb Alamgir.
Taj Mahal is a mausoleum built by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan to house the tomb of his favourite wife, Mumtaz Mahal.
Ottoman army in World War I

At its largest extent, the Umayyad dynasty covered more than 5000000 sqmi making it one of the largest empires the world had yet seen, and the fifth largest contiguous empire ever.

History of France

The first written records for the history of France appeared in the Iron Age.

Cave painting in Lascaux.
Massalia (modern Marseille) silver coin with Greek legend, a testimony to Greeks in pre-Roman Gaul, 5th–1st century BC.
Celtic expansion in Europe, 6th–3rd century BC.
Vercingetorix throws down his arms at the feet of Julius Caesar after the Battle of Alesia. Painting by Lionel-Noël Royer, 1899.
Gaulish soldiers (Larousse Illustre 1898).
Victory over the Umayyads at the Battle of Tours (732) marked the furthest Muslim advance and enabled Frankish domination of Europe for the next century.
The coronation of Charlemagne (painting by Jean Fouquet).
A view of the remains of the Abbey of Cluny, a Benedictine monastery that was the centre of monastic life revival in the Middle Ages and marked an important step in the cultural rebirth following the Dark Ages.
Godefroy de Bouillon, a French knight, leader of the First Crusade and founder of the Kingdom of Jerusalem.
Philip II victorious at Bouvines thus annexing Normandy and Anjou into his royal domains. This battle involved a complex set of alliances from three important states, the Kingdoms of France and England and the Holy Roman Empire.
The capture of the French king John II at Poitiers in 1356.
France in the late 15th century: a mosaic of feudal territories.
Charles the Bold, the last Valois Duke of Burgundy. His death at the Battle of Nancy (1477) marked the division of his lands between the Kings of France and Habsburg Dynasty.
Henry IV of France was the first French Bourbon king.
Louis XIV of France, the "Sun King".
The expansion of France, 1552 to 1798.
The Battle of Fontenoy, 11 May 1745.
Lord Cornwallis surrenders at Yorktown to American and French allies.
Cover of the Encyclopédie.
Day of the Tiles in 1788 at Grenoble was the first riot. (Musée de la Révolution française).
The Tennis Court Oath of 20 June 1789 was a pivotal event during the first days of the Revolution. It signified the first time that French citizens formally stood in opposition to Louis XVI.
The Storming of the Bastille, 14 July 1789.
The signing of the August 1789 Decrees — in bas relief, Place de la République.
An illustration of the Women's March on Versailles, 5 October 1789.
The storming of the Tuileries Palace, 10 August 1792, (Musée de la Révolution française).
The Execution of Louis XVI on 21 January 1793 in what is now the Place de la Concorde, facing the empty pedestal where the statue of his grandfather, Louis XV, had stood.
Mass shootings at Nantes, War in the Vendée, 1793.
The execution of Robespierre, 28 July 1794.
Napoleon I on His Imperial Throne, by Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres.
Napoléon at the Battle of Austerlitz, by François Gérard.
The height of the First Empire.
Napoleon Bonaparte retreating from Moscow, by Adolf Northern.
Population growth 1801-2001 from Demographics of France.
Louis XVIII makes a return at the Hôtel de Ville de Paris on 29 August 1814.
The taking of the Hôtel de Ville — the seat of Paris's government — during the July Revolution of 1830.
Napoleon III, Emperor of the French. His very widespread popularity came from being the nephew of Napoleon Bonaparte.
Shaded areas: Occupied France after the Franco-Prussian War until war reparations were paid.
A barricade in the Paris Commune, 18 March 1871.
The Eiffel Tower under construction in July 1888.
French empire, 17th-20th centuries. Dark blue = Second Empire 1830–1960.
A French bayonet charge in 1913.
The 114th infantry in Paris, 14 July 1917.
The Council of Four (from left to right): David Lloyd George, Vittorio Emanuele Orlando, Georges Clemenceau, and Woodrow Wilson in Versailles.
French cavalry entering Essen during the Occupation of the Ruhr.
German soldiers on parade marching past the Arc de Triomphe.
Vichy police escorting French Jewish citizens for deportation during the Marseille roundup, January 1943.
A Resistance fighter during street fighting in 1944.
Smoke rises from oil tanks beside the Suez Canal hit during the initial Anglo-French assault on Port Said, 5 November 1956.
De Gaulle and Germany's Konrad Adenauer in 1961.
Emmanuel Macron and Germany's Angela Merkel in 2017.
On 11 January 2015, over 1 million demonstrators, plus dozens of foreign leaders, gather at the Place de la Republique to pledge solidarity to liberal French values, after the Charlie Hebdo shooting.

At its apex, it was one of the largest empires in history.

Italy

Country that consists of a peninsula delimited by the Alps and several islands surrounding it, whose territory largely coincides with the homonymous geographical region.

Expansion of the territory called "Italy" from ancient Greece until Diocletian
The Iron Crown of Lombardy, for centuries a symbol of the Kings of Italy
Marco Polo, explorer of the 13th century, recorded his 24 years-long travels in the Book of the Marvels of the World, introducing Europeans to Central Asia and China.
The Italian states before the beginning of the Italian Wars in 1494
Leonardo da Vinci, the quintessential Renaissance man, in a self-portrait (ca. 1512, Royal Library, Turin)
Christopher Columbus leads an expedition to the New World, 1492. His voyages are celebrated as the discovery of the Americas from a European perspective, and they opened a new era in the history of humankind and sustained contact between the two worlds.
Flag of the Cispadane Republic, which was the first Italian tricolour adopted by a sovereign Italian state (1797)
Holographic copy of 1847 of Il Canto degli Italiani, the Italian national anthem since 1946
Animated map of the Italian unification from 1829 to 1871
The Victor Emmanuel II Monument in Rome, a national symbol of Italy celebrating the first king of the unified country, and resting place of the Italian Unknown Soldier since the end of World War I. It was inaugurated in 1911, on the occasion of the 50th Anniversary of the Unification of Italy.
The fascist dictator Benito Mussolini titled himself Duce and ruled the country from 1922 to 1943.
Areas controlled by the Italian Empire at its peak
Italian partisans in Milan during the Italian Civil War, April 1945
Alcide De Gasperi, first republican Prime Minister of Italy and one of the Founding Fathers of the European Union
The signing ceremony of the Treaty of Rome on 25 March 1957, creating the European Economic Community, forerunner of the present-day European Union
Funerals of the victims of the Bologna bombing of 2 August 1980, the deadliest attack ever perpetrated in Italy during the Years of Lead
Italian government task force to face the COVID-19 emergency
Topographic map of Italy
Dolphins in the Tyrrhenian Sea off the Aeolian Islands
National and regional parks in Italy
Gran Paradiso, established in 1922, is the oldest Italian national park.
The Italian wolf, the national animal of Italy
Köppen-Geiger climate classification map of Italy
The Chamber of Deputies is the lower house of Italy.
The Supreme Court of Cassation, Rome
An Alfa Romeo 159 vehicle of the Carabinieri corps
Group photo of the G7 leaders at the 43rd G7 summit in Taormina
Heraldic coat of arms of the Italian Armed Forces
A proportional representation of Italy exports, 2019
Milan is the economic capital of Italy, and is a global financial centre and a fashion capital of the world.
A Carrara marble quarry
The Autostrada dei Laghi ("Lakes Motorway"), the first motorway built in the world
FS' Frecciarossa 1000 high speed train, with a maximum speed of 400 km/h
Trieste, the main port of the northern Adriatic and starting point of the Transalpine Pipeline
ENI is considered one of the world's oil and gas "Supermajors".
Solar panels in Piombino. Italy is one of the world's largest producers of renewable energy.
Galileo Galilei, the father of modern science, physics and astronomy
Enrico Fermi, creator of the world's first first nuclear reactor
The Amalfi Coast is one of Italy's major tourist destinations.
Map of Italy's population density at the 2011 census
Italy is home to a large population of migrants from Eastern Europe and North Africa.
Linguistic map showing the languages spoken in Italy
Vatican City, the Holy See's sovereign territory
Bologna University, established in AD 1088, is the world's oldest academic institution.
Olive oil and vegetables are central to the Mediterranean diet.
Carnival of Venice
The Last Supper (1494–1499), Leonardo da Vinci, Church of Santa Maria delle Grazie, Milan
Michelangelo's David (1501–1504), Galleria dell'Accademia, Florence
The Birth of Venus (1484–1486), Sandro Botticelli, Uffizi Gallery, Florence
Dante shown holding a copy of the Divine Comedy, next to the entrance to Hell, the mount of Purgatory and the city of Florence, with the spheres of Heaven above, in Michelino's fresco, 1465
Niccolò Machiavelli, founder of modern political science and ethics
Pinocchio is one of the world's most translated books and a canonical piece of children's literature.
Clockwise from top left: Thomas Aquinas, proponent of natural theology and the Father of Thomism; Giordano Bruno, one of the major scientific figures of the Western world; Cesare Beccaria, considered the Father of criminal justice and modern criminal law; and Maria Montessori, credited with the creation of the Montessori education
La Scala opera house
Statues of Pantalone and Harlequin, two stock characters from the Commedia dell'arte, in the Museo Teatrale alla Scala
Dario Fo, one of the most widely performed playwrights in modern theatre, received international acclaim for his highly improvisational style.
Giacomo Puccini, Italian composer whose operas, including La bohème, Tosca, Madama Butterfly and Turandot, are among the most frequently worldwide performed in the standard repertoire
Luciano Pavarotti, considered one of the finest tenors of the 20th century and the "King of the High Cs"
Giorgio Moroder, pioneer of Italo disco and electronic dance music, is known as the "Father of disco".
Entrance to Cinecittà in Rome
The Azzurri in 2012. Football is the most popular sport in Italy.
Starting in 1909, the Giro d'Italia is the Grands Tours' second oldest.
A Ferrari SF21 by Scuderia Ferrari, the most successful Formula One team
Prada shop at Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II in Milan
The traditional recipe for spaghetti with tomato and basil sauce
Italian wine and salumi
The Frecce Tricolori, with the smoke trails representing the national colours of Italy, during the celebrations of the Festa della Repubblica
The Venice Film Festival is the oldest film festival in the world.

The Roman Empire was among the most powerful economic, cultural, political and military forces in the world of its time, and it was one of the largest empires in world history.