Interesting Facts about World

Area of the world's surface is about 509,700,000 square kilometres. Population of the world is about 5,994,000,000. Largest continent is Asia, which covers about 44,004,000 square kilometres. Smallest continent is Australia, excluding the Pacific Islands, which covers about 7,713,000 square kilometres. Largest country is Russia, which covers 17,075,400 square kilometres. Smallest country is Vatican City. It has an area of only 0.4 square kilometres. Most populous country is China, which had about 1,265,413,000 people in 1998.Least populous country, Vatican City, had only about 1,000 citizens in 1998.Highest point in the world, Mount Everest in Asia, rises 8,848 metres above sea level. Lowest point on land is the shore of the Dead Sea in Asia. It lies 399 metres below sea level. Deepest point in the world's oceans is Challenger Deep, 11,033 metres below the surface of the Pacific Ocean southwest of Guam in the Mariana Trench.

Interesting Facts about Rocks
Balanced Rock in the Garden of the Gods near Colorado Springs, Colorado, U.S.A., is an enormous block of sandstone delicately balanced on a small base. Bendable rock Most rocks cannot be bent or squeezed out of shape. But thin slabs of itacolumite, a rare kind of sandstone found in India and North Carolina, U.S.A., can be bent by hand because of their crystalline structure. Eight elements make up more than 98 per cent of all the rocks in the world. These elements are found in about the following percentages: oxygen (46.5), silicon (27.6), aluminium (8.0), iron (5.0), calcium (3.6), sodium (2.8), potassium (2.6), and magnesium (2.0). Floating rock. Pumice is a rock that floats on water. It was once volcanic lava filled with gases. When the gases escaped, they left millions of tiny holes that filled with air. Rock of Gibraltar is a huge block of limestone near the southern tip of the mainland of Europe

Interesting Facts about Flags
The first "flags" consisted of symbols attached to the tops of poles. Such flaglike objects appear in Egyptian art of the mid-3000's B.C. Cloth flags were probably first used in China about 3000 B.C. These flags were made of silk. Knights in the Middle Ages carried square flags with a streamer called a schwenkel attached. A knight's promotion to higher rank was symbolized by having the schwenkel cut off. The resulting flag was called a banner, and the knight became a knight-banneret. National flags are among the most recent kinds of flags. They first came into use during the 1700's in Europe and North America. Until then, most flags stood for the personal authority of rulers. Flags at sea. Before the days of radio, a complicated system of flag design and display grew up around the need for communication at sea. Flag codes enabled the sending of messages between ships or from a ship to shore. A ship would salute another vessel by dipping, or lowering, its flag. Such salutes played a major role in international diplomacy. Flag colours. Most national flags use one or more of only seven basic colours. These colours are red, white, blue, green, yellow, black, and orange. Flag symbols often reflect historical events. The cross that appears in many European flags originated in the flags carried by Crusaders to the Holy Land. Some flags used in Arab nations show the eagle of Saladin, a Muslim warrior who fought the Crusaders in the 1100's. Burning is considered the most dignified way to destroy a flag that is no longer fit for display. But burning a usable flag often signifies political protest.

GREAT DESERTS OF THE WORLD
Desert is a hot, barren region that receives little rainfall. Deserts cover about a seventh of the earth's land area. The largest desert in the world is the Sahara, which is in northern Africa. The Sahara spreads over about 9 million square kilometres. Other large deserts include the Australian Desert; the Arabian Desert on the Arabian Peninsula; the Gobi Desert in China and Mongolia; and the Kalahari Desert in southern Africa. Deserts also cover about 1.3 million square kilometres of the interior of North America. Sand covers from 10 to 20 per cent of most deserts.

Rainfall in a desert averages less than 25 centimetres yearly. Desert animals include many kinds of insects, spiders, reptiles, birds, and mammals. Deer, foxes, wolves, and other animals may visit a desert after a rainfall. Desert animals also use water that is produced in their bodies during digestion. This source of water is particularly important to camels, which can go for long periods without food and water. Large amounts of fat are stored in the humps of camels. A camel can live for months on the water produced when its body breaks down this fat for use as energy. AREA IN THOUSAND NAME COUNTRY SQUARE KILOMETERS Sahara N. Africa 8,400 Australian Australia 1,550 Arabian S. W. Asia 1,300 Gobi Central Asia 1,040 Kalhari S. Africa 520 Turkestan Central Asia 450 Takla Makan China 320 Sonoran U.S.A. and Mexico 310 Namib S. W. Africa 310 Thar N. W. India 260 Somali Somalia 260 Atacama N. Chile 180 Dasht-e-Lut E. Iran 52 Mojave California, U.S.A. 35 Sechura N. W. Peru

Mountains
Mountain is a landform that stands much higher than its surroundings. Mountains generally are larger than hills

Mountains generally have steep slopes and sharp or slightly rounded peaks or ridges. Many geologists consider an elevated area a mountain only if it includes two or more zones of climate and plant life at different altitudes. A mountain may be a single peak, such as a lone volcano, or it may be part of a mountain range. A group of mountain ranges forms a mountain system.

HIGHEST MOUNTAINS OF THE WORLD
MOUNTAINS Everest K2{Godwin Austen} Kangchenjunga Lhotse Makalu Dhaulagiri Nanga Parbat Annapurna Gasherbrum Xixabangma Feng Nanda Devi Rakaposhi LOCATION Nepal Kashmir-China Nepal-Sikkim Nepal Nepal-Tibet Nepal Pakistan Nepal Pakistan Gosainathan {Tibet} India Pakistan HEIGHT IN METERS 8848 8611 8600 8501 8475 8172 8126 8078 8068 8013 7817 7787

The 25 Longest Rivers in the World River is a large body of water that flows over land in a long channel. Most rivers begin high in the mountains or hills. A river's source may be a melting snowfield or glacier, a spring, or an overflowing lake. The longest river is the Nile River in Africa The next longest river, the Amazon River in South America carries more water than any other river--more than the Nile, the Mississippi, and the Yangtze together. Rivers are also valuable to agriculture because their valleys and plains provide especially fertile land for growing crops. Rivers also serve as an important energy source. Number River Length in Miles Where Found

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25.

Nile Amazon Chang Jiang (Yangtze) Huang He Ob-Irtysh Amur Lena Congo Mackenzie Mekong Niger Yenisey Parana Mississippi Missouri Murray-Darling Volga Purus Madeira Sao Francisco Yukon Rio Grande Brahmaputra Indus Danube

4,160 miles 4,000 miles 3,964 3,395 3,362 2,744 2,734 2,718 2,635 2,600 2,590 2,543 2,485 2,350 2,341 2,310 2,290 2,100 2,013 1,988 1,979 1,900 1,800 1,800 1,776 miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles miles

North/East Africa South America China China Russia Northeast Asia Russia Central Africa Canada Southeast Asia Africa Russia South America USA USA Australia Russia Brazil Brazil Brazil Alaska/Canada USA/Mexico China/India Pakistan Europe

AGENCIES OF THE U.N.O
Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) helps improve the production of farms, forests, and fishing waters. International Maritime Organization (IMO) encourages cooperation in shipping practices and regulations. International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) works for greater safety in air service and for standard international flying regulations.

International Development Association (IDA) works with the World Bank. It lends money on easier terms than does the World Bank or the International Finance Corporation. International Finance Corporation (IFC) works with the World Bank. It encourages smaller, private developments. It mostly lends money for large governmental projects. International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) finances projects to increase food production in developing countries. International Labour Organization (ILO) helps improve working and living conditions throughout the world. International Monetary Fund (IMF) helps adjust differences between the money systems used by various countries, making it easier for nations to trade with one another. International Telecommunication Union (ITU) helps nations cooperate to solve problems dealing with radio, telephone, telegraph, and satellite communications. United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) encourages educational, scientific, and cultural progress to increase understanding among nations. United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) organizes and funds industrialization projects for developing countries. Universal Postal Union (UPU) works for international cooperation in the delivery of mail. World Bank is officially called the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD). It lends money to help countries with such projects as dams, power plants, and railways. World Health Organization (WHO) is the world's principal agency for dealing with health problems. World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) works for international cooperation to protect artistic and literary works, inventions, and trademarks against copying. World Meteorological Organization (WMO) encourages nations to cooperate in weather forecasting

NATIONAL FLOWERS
A number of countries have official or unofficial national flowers. Some of these countries and their flowers are listed below. Australia........ Golden wattle Austria.......... Edelweiss Costa Rica....... Cattleya orchid England.......... Rose Guatemala........ White nun orchid India............ Lotus Japan............ Chrysanthemum Malaysia......... Hibiscus Mexico........... Dahlia Netherlands...... Tulip Philippines...... Arabian jasmine Portugal......... Carnation Scotland......... Thistle South Africa..... Giant protea Turkey........... Tulip United States.... Rose

LAST WORDS OF GREAT PEOPLE

Archimedes (Greek mathematician): Wait till I have finished my problem. Anne Boleyn (Queen Consort): The executioner is, I believe, very expert; and my neck is very slender. Buddha (Prince Gautama Siddhartha): Decay is inherent in all component things. Lord George Byron (English Poet): Now I shall go to sleep. Julius Caesar (Roman Statesman): Et tu, Brute. Caligula (Roman Emperor): I am still alive! Thomas Carlyle (Historian and essayist): So this is death, well..... Lewis Carroll (Author): Take away those pillows, I shall need them no more. Catherine of Aragon (Henry VIII' s first wife): Lord, into thy hands I commend my spirit. Thomas Alva Edison (American Inventor): It is very beautiful over there. George V (British King): How is the Empire? Hamlet (Shakespearean Character): The rest is silence Louis XIV (French King): Why weep you? Did you think I would live for ever? I thought dying was harder. Niccolo Machiavelli (Italian Statesman): I love my country more than my soul. Katherine Mansfield (Writer): I love the rain, I want the feeling of it on my face. Karl Marx (philosopher): Last words are for fools who haven't said enough. William Somerset Maugham (British Writer): Dying is a very dull, dreary affair. My advice to you is to have nothing whatever to do with it. Napoleon 1 (French Emperor): France! army! head of the army! Josephine! Pablo Picasso (Spanish Artist): Drink to me. FDR Roosevelt (US President): I have a terrific headache. Victoria (British Queen): Oh that peace may come.

Voltaire (French Author and Philosopher): Do let me die in peace. Oscar Wilde (Dramatist): I am dying as I have lived: beyond my means

Holidays, celebrated throughout the year and throughout the world.
Martin Luther King, Jr. Day - This holiday celebrates the birthday and the life and times of the famous civil rights leader. Groundhog Day - Groundhog Day is a day to have fun and see whether more or less winter is on the way, courtesy of a furry weather predictor who lives in a hole. Valentine's Day - Valentine's Day is a celebration of love and loved ones. St. Patrick's Day - Find out why this holiday is so special to Irish and non-Irish people alike. Passover - Passover is the Jewish holiday celebrating the Exodus from Egypt. Easter - Easter is both a religious and a commercial holiday. The religious holiday sees Christians celebrating the resurrection of Jesus, whom they believe is their Savior. The commercial holiday sees the coming of the Easter Bunny, who brings eggs and candy to children and adults. Golden Week - Golden Week is a weeklong series of holidays in Japan. Included are Boys' Day, Children's Day, and Constitution Memorial Day, among others. Cinco de Mayo - Cinco de Mayo is celebrated on May 5 (Cinco de Mayo). This holiday honors a victory by the Mexican Army over invading French troops at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. Vesak - Buddha's Birthday. Vesak is the holiest day on the Buddhist calendar. It celebrates the birth, the Enlightenment, and the death of the Buddha. Mother's Day - Mother's Day is a day to honor your mother, your grandmother, and other people who have helped you become the person you are. Shavuot - Shavuot is the holiest time in the Jewish calendar. It marks the deliverance of the Torah to Moses on Mount Sinai. Memorial Day - Memorial Day is a day to remember the soldiers who have died fighting for their country. Father's Day - Father's Day is an American holiday designed to honor fathers. It has expanded to include grandfathers, stepfathers, and fatherly figures. Juneteenth - Juneteenth is short for June 19th, the anniversary of the end of slavery. These links take you to the history, celebrations, and importance of this historic holiday. Canada Day - Dominion Day. It's the national holiday of Canada, celebrating the union of English and French Canada. It's a lot more than that! It's celebrations and food and fun! Fourth of July - U.S. Independence Day. July 4 is the day Americans traditionally celebrate as Independence Day, the day the United States declared themselves independent from England in 1776. Bastille Day - Bastille Day celebrates the storming of the Bastille prison and the release of many prisoners. It was a symbol of individual freedom during the French Revolution. Rosh Hashanah - Rosh Hashanah is a very somber holiday, the beginning of the High Holy Days of Judaism. It is actually a two-day celebration and is often referred to as the Jewish New Year. Yom Kippur - Day of Atonement - Yom Kippur is the end of the High Holy Days, which begin with Rosh Hashanah. Yom Kippur is known as the "Day of Atonement," on which Jews pray for atonement for their sins. Halloween - This spooky holiday is October 31. People celebrate with costumes, tricks-and-treats, and pumpkins-lots of pumpkins. Ramadan - Ramadan is a month long fast observed by Muslims to honor the revelation of the Word to Muhammad.

Thanksgiving in America - Thanksgiving is a November holiday that Americans celebrate in honor of a feast between English settlers and Native Americans near Plymouth in 1621. These were the Pilgrims, and they sat down to feast with members of the Wampanoag tribe. Hanukkah - Hanukkah is the Jewish Festival of Lights, celebrated at the end of the calendar year. Christmas - Christmas is celebrated on December 25 in countries all around the world. Find out how different people celebrate. Kwanzaa - Kwanzaa is a holiday festival that begins December 26 and lasts for a full seven days. Kwanzaa means "first fruits of the harvest." It is a time to celebrate African and African-American heritage and culture

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