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Friday 19th July
Croatia Facts
Croatia is in a geographic area in southeastern Europe known as the Balkans. The Balkans includes countries of the former Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia: Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Kosovo, Montenegro, and Macedonia, as well as Albania, Bulgaria, Greece and Romania.

Vindija Cave, to the north of Zagreb, was inhabited by Homo neanderthalensis and early modern man.

Dalmatia is the coastal region of Croatia from the Kvarner Riviera in the north to Dubrovnik in the south.

Dalmatia is named after the Dalmati, an Illyrian tribe who lived in the area around 1200 BC.

The Dalmatian dog, also known as the Dubrovnik hunter, originally came from Dalmatia.

Krk is the largest island in the Adriatic. The name "Krk" can be traced back to the Illyrian civilization that used the name "Kurykta" for the island.

Cres is one of Croatia's largest islands.

The island of Hvar is known for its favourable climate, in particular its mild winters.

The town of Stari Grad on Hvar dates back to the Greek colony of Pharos.

Almost three-quarters of the Island of Mljet is covered with forests. Part of Mljet is a National Park.

Much of the Kornati National Park is a protected marine environment.

Marco Polo, the famous traveller and trader, was born on the Island of Korcula.

Porec is famous for the Euphrasius Basilica, built in the sixth century.

The historic city of Trogir is a World Heritage site.

The palace of the Roman Emperor Diocletian, in Split, is on the World Heritage List.

Slavonski Brod, along the River Sava, was a Roman town. Interesting buildings include Fortress Brod and the Franciscan Monastery.

The Cathedral of St James, a World Heritage site, is probably the most well known building in Sibenik.

Dubrovnik was an important port from the thirteenth to the sixteenth century.

In the sixteenth century Dubrovnik became a Republic. After the Napoleonic Wars (1815), Dubrovnik was amalgamated with Croatia.

The 1667 earthquake destroyed parts of Dubrovnik killing many of its inhabitants.

The University of Zagreb, the oldest Croatian University, was established in 1669.

Croatia has produced many great engineers and scientists. Perhaps the most famous was Nikola Tesla (1856-1943). Tesla registered patents for over seven hundred inventions and in 1942 the American Supreme Court decided that it was Tesla who invented the radio and not Marconi. Tesla refused a joint Nobel Prize with T.A Edison.

Milutin Milankovic (1879-1958), born near Osijek, is famous for the theory known as the "Milankovic Cycles" which relates to the earth's orbit and climate change.

Leopold Stephen Ruzicka (1887- 1976), born in Vukovar, was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1939 for discoveries in organic chemistry.

Josip Broz "Tito" (1892-1980) was born in Croatia - his father was Croatian and his mother was Slovenian. Tito controlled Yugoslavia for thirty-five years.

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Read Life and Times of Nikola Tesla


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