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Philip Yampolsky, Dr Sumarsam, Lisa Gold, Tilman Seebass, Benjamin Brinner, Michael Crawford, Simon Cook, Matthew Isaac Cohen, Marc Perlman, Virginia Gorlinski, Margaret J. Kartomi, Christopher Basile, R. Anderson Sutton and Franki Raden

Country in South-east Asia.

Philip Yampolsky

Currently the fourth most populous nation in the world, Indonesia covers a vast archipelago of some 17,500 islands, of which about 6000 are inhabited (fig.1 ). Its people belong to approximately 300 ethnic groups and speak roughly the same number of languages. The Melayu (Malay) language, originally spoken by ethnic Melayu of the Malay peninsula, eastern Sumatra, and the Riau islands, developed into a trading, administrative and literary lingua franca in many parts of the archipelago; under the name Bahasa Indonesia it has been successfully established as the national language of independent Indonesia. Some 85–90% of the country’s inhabitants profess the Muslim faith, making Indonesia the world’s largest Muslim nation. Irian Jaya, the easternmost province of Indonesia, comprises the western half of the island of New Guinea; its population and cultures are Melanesian rather than Indonesian and it is therefore treated more fully elsewhere (...

Article

Regula Qureshi, Harold S. Powers, Jonathan Katz, Richard Widdess, Gordon Geekie, Alastair Dick, Devdan Sen, Nazir A. Jairazbhoy, Peter Manuel, Robert Simon, Joseph J. Palackal, Soniya K. Brar, M. Whitney Kelting, Edward O. Henry, Maria Lord, Alison Arnold, Warren Pinckney, Kapila Vatsyayan and Bonnie C. Wade

In 

See India, subcontinent of

Article

Israel  

Jehoash Hirshberg, Natan Shahar, Edwin Seroussi and Amnon Shiloah

Country in the Middle East. The history of the Jewish people was dominated by the traumatic destruction of the Second Temple (70 ce) and the dispersal of the majority of Jews in the Diaspora. Longing for a return to the Holy Land became a basic tenet in Jewish faith. Religious devotion, persecutions and the emergence of a Jewish national movement in the late 19th century triggered successive immigration waves of Jews to Palestine, beginning in ...

Article

Philip Yampolsky, Dr Sumarsam, Lisa Gold, Tilman Seebass, Benjamin Brinner, Michael Crawford, Simon Cook, Matthew Isaac Cohen, Marc Perlman, Virginia Gorlinski, Margaret J. Kartomi, Christopher Basile, R. Anderson Sutton and Franki Raden

In 

See Indonesia

Article

Alan R. Thrasher, Joseph S.C. Lam, Jonathan P.J. Stock, Colin Mackerras, Francesca Rebollo-Sborgi, Frank Kouwenhoven, A. Schimmelpenninck, Stephen Jones, Han Mei, Wu Ben, Helen Rees, Sabine Trebinjac and Joanna C. Lee

In 

See China, People’s Republic of

Article

Hugh de Ferranti, Shigeo Kishibe, David W. Hughes, W. Adriaansz, Robin Thompson, Charles Rowe, Donald P. Berger, W. Malm, W.P. Malm, David Waterhouse, Allan Marett, Richard Emmert, Fumio Koizumi, Kazuyuki Tanimoto, Masakata Kanazawa, Linda Fujie and Elizabeth Falconer

In 

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Article

Nazir A. Jairazbhoy and Peter Manuel

In 

See India, subcontinent of

Article

Sotirios Chianis and Rudolph M. Brandl

In 

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Article

Kapila Vatsyayan and Maria Lord

In 

See India, subcontinent of

Article

Hugh de Ferranti, Shigeo Kishibe, David W. Hughes, W. Adriaansz, Robin Thompson, Charles Rowe, Donald P. Berger, W. Malm, W.P. Malm, David Waterhouse, Allan Marett, Richard Emmert, Fumio Koizumi, Kazuyuki Tanimoto, Masakata Kanazawa, Linda Fujie and Elizabeth Falconer

In 

See Japan

Article

Japan  

Hugh de Ferranti, Shigeo Kishibe, David W. Hughes, W. Adriaansz, Robin Thompson, Charles Rowe, Donald P. Berger, W. Malm, W.P. Malm, David Waterhouse, Allan Marett, Richard Emmert, Fumio Koizumi, Kazuyuki Tanimoto, Masakata Kanazawa, Linda Fujie and Elizabeth Falconer

Country in East Asia. With an area of 370,000 km² and a population of about 126·43 million (2000), it principally comprises four main islands (Honshū, Kyūshū, Hokkaidō and Shikoku) and the Ryūkyū archipelago, extending in an arc between Kyūshū and Taiwan. Early cultural influences flowed from Japan’s proximity to China and Korea to the west. Although generally considered to be ethnically homogeneous, Japan is culturally diverse, with distinctive cultures especially in the far south (Ryukyuan) and the far north (Ainu culture of Hokkaidō) complementing the mainstream of Japanese culture....

Article

Abdel-Hamid Hamam

Constitutional monarchy in West Asia. Located in the centre of the eastern Arab world, Jordan has an area of 91,860 km² and a population (est. 2000) of approximately 6·33 million, of which some 96% are Sunni Muslim. Through population movements and common geographical features, Jordan has close cultural and musical links with the neighbouring Arab cultures of Syria, Palestine, Iraq and Saudi Arabia....

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From 1979 the name of the Gilbert Islands. See Micronesia, §III.

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Kuwait  

Country in the Middle East on the north-west coast of the Arabian Gulf.

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Laos  

Terry E. Miller

The Lao People's Democratic Republic is a small, landlocked country in mainland South-east Asia bordering Vietnam, China, Myanmar (Burma), Thailand and Cambodia. Before its partition into the princedoms of Luang Prabang, Vientiane (also spelt Viang Chan) and Champassak soon after 1700, the 14th-century kingdom of Lan Sang (‘Million Elephants’) was a significant power in the region. After ...

Article

Ruth M. Stone

Country in West Africa. Located on the coast of the Atlantic, bordering Sierra Leone, Guinea and Côte d’Ivoire, it has an area of 99,067 km² and a population of 3·26 million (2000 estimate). The population consists of the indigenous peoples and the descendants of English-speaking repatriated Africans who settled on the coast during the 19th century. The country owes its national political structure to the latter groups....

Article

Libya  

Monique Brandily

Country in North Africa. It has an area of approximately 1,759,540 km² and covers various cultural areas. Its coastline of approximately 2000 km between Egypt and Tunisia is part of the Mediterranean region, although most of its territory lies in the Sahara desert, extending from the Sudan to southern Algeria; to the south, it borders the sub-Saharan African states of Chad and Niger....

Article

Juozas Antanavičius and Jadvyga Čiurlionytė

Country in eastern Europe. The Grand Duchy of Lithuania was created in the 13th century. Lithuania was the last European state to convert to Christianity (1387–1413). In 1386 Grand Duke Jogaila was crowned King of Poland, and for 350 years Lithuania and Poland were united. During this period Russia, Prussia and Austria made territorial claims, and the Lithuanian-Polish state was partitioned three times. After the third partition (...

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Dimitrije Bužarovski and Trena Jordanoska

The Republic of Macedonia is a state in the central Balkans. It occupies the northern part of historical Macedonia, a wider region that also includes territories of the Hellenic Republic (the Republic of Greece), the Republic of Bulgaria, the Republic of Serbia, and the Republic of Albania. As a crossroads of the Balkans, and on a transit route for the southern Balkan Peninsula, Macedonia has been inhabited since the earliest periods of human civilization in south-eastern Europe. The migrations of the tribes from the Russian steppes, the Pontic basin, and the Lower Danube created a rich cultural heritage, evident in the archeological sites from the Neolithic and Eneolithic periods. The ancient Macedonian kingdom expanded eastwards from about 700 ...

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See India, subcontinent of