| common_name = Belgium
| image_flag = Flag of Belgium.svg
| flag_caption = Flaga
| image_coat = Great Coat of Arms of Belgium.svg
| symbol_type = Coat of arms
| national_motto =
(literally, "Unity makes strength")
| englishmotto = "Strength through Unity"
| national_anthem = "Brabançonne"
| image_map = EU-Belgium.svg
| image_map2 = Belgium - Location Map (2013) - BEL - UNOCHA.svg
| map_caption =
| official_languages = Dutch, French, German
| demonym = Belgian
| ethnic_groups = see ''Demographics''
| capital = Brusselsb
| latd=50 |latm=51 |latNS=N |longd=4 |longm=21 |longEW=E
| largest_city = capital
| government_type = Federal parliamentary
| leader_title1 = Monarch
| leader_name1 = Philippe
| leader_title2 = Prime Minister
| leader_name2 = Charles Michel
| legislature = Federal Parliament
| upper_house = Senate
| lower_house = Chamber of Representatives
| area_km2 = 30,528
| area_sq_mi = 11,787
| area_rank = 140th
| percent_water = 6.4
| population_census = 11,190,845
| population_census_year = 1 January 2015
| population_census_rank = 75th
| population_density_km2 = 363.6
| population_density_rank = 23rd
| population_density_sq_mi = 941.68
| GDP_PPP_year = 2015
| GDP_PPP = $494.620 billion〔(【引用サイトリンク】title=Belgium )〕
| GDP_PPP_rank = 38th
| GDP_PPP_per_capita = $43,629〔
| GDP_PPP_per_capita_rank = 20th
| GDP_nominal_year = 2015
| GDP_nominal = $458.651 billion〔
| GDP_nominal_rank = 23rd
| GDP_nominal_per_capita = $40,456〔
| GDP_nominal_per_capita_rank = 17th
| Gini_year = 2011
| Gini_change =
| Gini = 26.3
| Gini_ref = 〔(【引用サイトリンク】url=http://appsso.eurostat.ec.europa.eu/nui/show.do?dataset=ilc_di12 )〕
| HDI_year = 2013
| HDI_change = steady
| HDI = 0.881
| HDI_ref = 〔(【引用サイトリンク】title=Human Development Report 2011 )〕
| HDI_rank = 21st
| sovereignty_type = Independence
| sovereignty_note = from the Netherlands
| established_event1 = Declared
| established_date1 = 4 October 1830
| established_event2 = Recognised
| established_date2 = 19 April 1839
| established_event3 = Founded the EEC (now the EU)
| established_date3 = 1 January 1958
| currency = Euro (€)
| currency_code = EUR
| time_zone = CET
| utc_offset = +1
| time_zone_DST = CEST
| utc_offset_DST = +2
| drives_on = right
| calling_code = 32
| cctld = .bec
| footnote_a = The flag's official proportions of 13:15 are rarely seen; proportions of 2:3 or similar are more common.
| footnote_b = The Brussels region is the ''de facto'' capital, but the City of Brussels municipality is the ''de jure'' capital
| footnote_c = The .eu domain is also used, as it is shared with other European Union member states.
Belgium (; (オランダ語:België) ; (フランス語:Belgique) ; (ドイツ語:Belgien) ), officially the Kingdom of Belgium, is a sovereign state in Western Europe. It is a founding member of the European Union and hosts several of the EU's official seats and as well as the headquarters of many major international organizations such as NATO.〔Belgium is also a member of, or affiliated to, many international organizations, including ACCT, AfDB, AsDB, Australia Group, Benelux, BIS, CCC, CE, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, EIB, EMU, ESA, EU, FAO, G-10, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, MONUC (observers), NATO, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OPCW, OSCE, PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNECE, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNMIK, UNMOGIP, UNRWA, UNTSO, UPU, WADB (non-regional), WEU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTrO, ZC.〕 Belgium covers an area of and has a population of about 11 million people.
Straddling the cultural boundary between Germanic and Latin Europe, Belgium is home to two main linguistic groups: the Dutch-speaking, mostly Flemish community, which constitutes about 59% of the population, and the French-speaking, mostly Walloon population, which comprises 41% of all Belgians. Additionally, there is a small group of German-speakers who live in the East Cantons located around the High Fens area, and bordering Germany.
Belgium is a federal constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary system of governance. Its two largest regions are the Dutch-speaking region of Flanders in the north and the French-speaking southern region of Wallonia. The Brussels-Capital Region, officially bilingual, is a mostly French-speaking enclave within the Flemish Region.〔
A German-speaking Community exists in eastern Wallonia.〔(The German-speaking Community ) at Belgium.be〕〔 The (original) (version in German language ) (already) mentions 73,000 instead of 71,500 inhabitants.〕
Belgium's linguistic diversity and related political conflicts are reflected in its political history and complex system of government.
Historically, Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg were known as the Low Countries; it once covered a somewhat larger area than the current Benelux group of states. The region was called Belgica in Latin, after the Roman province of Gallia Belgica, which covered more or less the same area. From the end of the Middle Ages until the 17th century, the area of Belgium was a prosperous and cosmopolitan centre of commerce and culture. From the 16th century until the Belgian Revolution in 1830, when Belgium seceded from the Netherlands, the area of Belgium served as the battleground between many European powers, causing it to be dubbed the "Battlefield of Europe,"〔—The book reviewer, Haß, attributes the expression in English to James Howell in 1640. Howell's original phrase "the cockpit of Christendom" became modified afterwards, as shown by:
—and as such coined for Belgium:
(See also The Nuttall Encyclopaedia)〕
a reputation strengthened by both world wars.
Upon its independence, Belgium participated in the Industrial Revolution
and, during the course of the 20th century, possessed a number of colonies in Africa.
The second half of the 20th century was marked by rising tensions between the Dutch-speaking and the French-speaking citizens fueled by differences in language and the unequal economic development of Flanders and Wallonia. This continuing antagonism has led to several far-reaching reforms, resulting in a transition from a unitary to a federal arrangement during the period from 1970 to 1993. Despite the reforms, tensions between the groups remain; the formation of a coalition government took 18 months following the June 2010 federal election.
== History ==
(詳細はGallia Belgica'', a Roman province in the northernmost part of Gaul that before Roman invasion in 100 BC, was inhabited by the ''Belgae'', a mix of Celtic and Germanic peoples.〔〕〔Footnote: The Celtic and/or Germanic influences on and origin(s) of the Belgae remains disputed. Further reading e.g.
A gradual immigration by Germanic Frankish tribes during the 5th century brought the area under the rule of the Merovingian kings. A gradual shift of power during the 8th century led the kingdom of the Franks to evolve into the Carolingian Empire.〔
Ib. e-book (2004) NetLibrary, Boulder, Colorado, United States, ISBN 0-8204-7283-2 2005), ISBN 0-8204-7647-1]〕
The Treaty of Verdun in 843 divided the region into Middle and West Francia and therefore into a set of more or less independent fiefdoms which, during the Middle Ages, were vassals either of the King of France or of the Holy Roman Emperor.〔
Many of these fiefdoms were united in the Burgundian Netherlands of the 14th and 15th centuries.
Emperor Charles V extended the personal union of the Seventeen Provinces in the 1540s, making it far more than a personal union by the Pragmatic Sanction of 1549 and increased his influence over the Prince-Bishopric of Liège.
The Eighty Years' War (1568–1648) divided the Low Countries into the northern United Provinces (''Belgica Foederata'' in Latin, the "Federated Netherlands") and the Southern Netherlands (''Belgica Regia'', the "Royal Netherlands"). The latter were ruled successively by the Spanish and the Austrian Habsburgs and comprised most of modern Belgium. This was the theatre of most Franco-Spanish and Franco-Austrian wars during the 17th and 18th centuries.
Following the campaigns of 1794 in the French Revolutionary Wars, the Low Countries—including territories that were never nominally under Habsburg rule, such as the Prince-Bishopric of Liège—were annexed by the French First Republic, ending Austrian rule in the region. The reunification of the Low Countries as the United Kingdom of the Netherlands occurred at the dissolution of the First French Empire in 1815, after the defeat of Napoleon.
In 1830, the Belgian Revolution led to the separation of the Southern Provinces from the Netherlands and to the establishment of a Catholic and bourgeois, officially French-speaking and neutral, independent Belgium under a provisional government and a national congress.〔
Since the installation of Leopold I as king on 1831 (which is now celebrated as Belgium's National Day), Belgium has been a constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, with a laicist constitution based on the Napoleonic code. Although the franchise was initially restricted, universal suffrage for men was introduced after the general strike of 1893 (with plural voting until 1919) and for women in 1949.
The main political parties of the 19th century were the Catholic Party and the Liberal Party, with the Belgian Labour Party emerging towards the end of the 19th century. French was originally the single official language adopted by the nobility and the bourgeoisie. It progressively lost its overall importance as Dutch became recognized as well. This recognition became official in 1898 and in 1967 a Dutch version of the Constitution was legally accepted.
The Berlin Conference of 1885 ceded control of the Congo Free State to King Leopold II as his private possession. From around 1900 there was growing international concern for the extreme and savage treatment of the Congolese population (millions of whom are thought to have died)〔''The River Congo: The Discovery, Exploration and Exploitation of the World's Most Dramatic Rivers," Harper & Row, (1977). ISBN Forbath, Peter, p. 278.〕 under Leopold II, for whom the Congo was primarily a source of revenue from ivory and rubber production. In 1908 this outcry led the Belgian state to assume responsibility for the government of the colony, henceforth called the Belgian Congo.〔〕
Germany invaded Belgium in 1914 as part of the Schlieffen Plan to attack France and much of the Western Front fighting of World War I occurred in western parts of the country. The opening months of the war were known as the Rape of Belgium due to German excesses. Belgium took over the German colonies of Ruanda-Urundi (modern-day Rwanda and Burundi) during the war, and they were mandated to Belgium in 1924 by the League of Nations. In the aftermath of the First World War, the Prussian districts of Eupen and Malmedy were annexed by Belgium in 1925, thereby causing the presence of a German-speaking minority.
The country was again invaded by Germany in 1940 and 40,690 Belgians, over half of them Jews, were killed during the subsequent occupation and The Holocaust. From September 1944 to February 1945 Belgium was liberated by the Allies. After World War II, a general strike forced King Leopold III, who many Belgians felt had collaborated with Germany during the war, to abdicate in 1951.〔Ramon Arango, ''Leopold III and the Belgian royal question'', The Johns Hopkins Press, Baltimore, 1961, p. 108.〕 The Belgian Congo gained independence in 1960 during the Congo Crisis;〔(【引用サイトリンク】title=The Congolese Civil War 1960–1964 )〕
Ruanda-Urundi followed with its independence two years later. Belgium joined NATO as a founding member and formed the Benelux group of nations with the Netherlands and Luxembourg.
Belgium became one of the six founding members of the European Coal and Steel Community in 1951 and of the European Atomic Energy Community and European Economic Community, established in 1957. The latter has now become the European Union, for which Belgium hosts major administrations and institutions, including the European Commission, the Council of the European Union and the extraordinary and committee sessions of the European Parliament.
抄文引用元・出典: フリー百科事典『 ウィキペディア（Wikipedia）』