Sat, Aug 05, 2006 - Page 14 News List

Globe trotting: Spain 世界走透透 - 西班牙

Hundreds of people dance the "Reboltosa dance" around a bandstand as musicians play in the main square of Tudela in northern Spain during the town's annual fiestas.
西班牙北方城鎮圖德拉年度慶典中,音樂家在廣場上演奏,數百名民眾繞著演奏台跳起「雷布土莎」舞。 (照片:美聯社)

PHOTO: AP

People from around Spain are often called "Iberians" after one of the first known peoples to live there. Over the centuries, their culture mixed with that of the Celtics, Romans, Arabs and Berbers from North Africa. Religion and politics have always had a close relationship in Spain, with mass conversions first to Islam, then to Catholicism.

Take a closer look at the corner of the world that brought you the siesta and made Christopher Columbus famous.

自西班牙開始有人居住,他們便被稱為「伊比利亞人」,幾世紀來,其文化融合了塞爾特、羅馬、阿拉伯和來自北非的柏柏爾文化。西班牙的宗教和政治向來關係密切,他們起初信奉伊斯蘭教,爾後改信天主教。深入了解siesta(西班牙文「小歇一下」之意)的發源地,以及讓哥倫布聞名遐邇的世界一隅。

A closer look 說古論今

Spain has been an exciting cultural hub for most of its existence. The Islamic capital of Cordoba was at one point probably the largest city in the world, and its civilization certainly one of the world、s most advanced. The devotion to philosophy and the arts of that time helped push the rest of Europe into the Renaissance. Today, 94 percent of the population is Roman Catholic. Interestingly, although often unified throughout history by things like religion, royal marriages, politics and culture, the different kingdoms of Spain did not become an absolutely unified country until the early 1700、s, although Spain played an important role in European politics long before that. Even now, the regions of Spain still have a lot of autonomy.

Like other western European countries, Spain played a big role in the colonization of America, which was then called the New World. Isabella I of Castile not only paid for Christopher Columbus、 famous trip, but during her marriage to Ferdinand of Aragon, the two major kingdoms of Spain were joined under one "Spanish" rule.The coutry、s struggle for a system that allows for both a national and regional identity, peace, security and prosperity is still something that Spain, like many countries, is working for today.Spain is known the world over for the quality of life its citizens live, the Mediterranean flavor of its south and the role the country played in shaping the world map as we know it today.

About Spain 國家概況

Size: 504,782km2, about 14 times the size of Taiwan

Location: Southwestern Europe

Border countries: Andorra, France, Portugal and Morocco

Capital: Madrid

Population: 40,397,842

Languages: Castilian Spanish, Catalan, Galician, Basque

Government: Parliamentary monarchy

Currency: Spain has used the euro since 1999. One euro equals about NT$42.

面積:五十萬四千七百八十二平方公里,約為台灣十四倍

位置:西南歐

鄰國:安道爾共和國、法國、葡萄牙、摩洛哥

首都:馬德里

人口:四千零三十九萬七千八百四十二人

語言:西班牙語、加泰隆語、加里西亞方言、巴斯克語

政體:君主國會

貨幣:西班牙自一九九九年開始使用歐元,一歐元約相當新台幣四十二元


西班牙在歷史洪流中一直是引人入勝的文化中心,伊斯蘭重鎮哥多華曾經是世界最大的都市,其文明亦是當時最進步的文明之一,當時西班牙對哲學和藝術的貢獻,將其餘歐洲世界推進文藝復興時期。今日94%的西班牙人信奉羅馬天主教,有趣的是,儘管西班牙在歷史上常因宗教、皇族婚約、政治和文化因素而整合,但境內不同的王國一直到十八世紀初才完全統一,不過早在此之前,西班牙就在歐洲政壇扮演重要角色。即使到現在,西班牙境內仍有許多自治區。

如同其他西歐國家一般,西班牙在美洲(當時稱做新世界)的殖民扮演重要的角色。卡斯蒂利亞女王伊莎貝拉不僅資助哥倫布著名的旅程,她和阿拉貢國王費迪南的婚約也使西班牙境內兩大王國合而為一,臣服於一個西班牙的統治之下。西班牙也像許多國家一樣,至今仍努力尋求能兼具中央及地方認同感、和平、安全和繁榮的體制。西班牙舉世聞名的不僅是居民的生活品質和南方地中海風情,更有我們今日所知,在塑造世界面貌時所扮演的角色。

(翻譯;鄭湘儀)

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