Location Luxembourg is located in Europe and is bordered by Belgium, Germany and
. On a map, it is located at 50 N latitude and 6 E longitude. Luxembourg is very small. It is only 998 square miles, which is roughly the size of Orange County, California. All the country is inhabited, with most people living in the southern part. The Flag The flag of Luxembourg was adopted in 1845. The colors come from the Coat of Arms of Luxembourg and are red, white and blue. The flag is simply three horizontal stripes from top to bottom. The Land and People Luxembourg has two distinct regions. The Ardennes, or northern region, is mountainous. The Bon Pays, or southern region, is mostly fertile farmland. The climate is cool and moist, with snow in the . There are rich deposits of iron ore creating many jobs in the steel industry. There is also fertile farmland to the south, also creating many jobs in farming. The people of Luxembourg have no native costume. They borrow much of their culture from Belgium, Germany, and France. Today, modern Luxembourgers dress like other Europeans. The people of Luxembourg like to eat smoked pork and beans, and sometimes saurkraut. Smoked ham is available all year round, and pastries are a Luxembourg favorite. Some of these pastries include rolls, muffins, cupcakes, and a special dry cake translated "Random Thoughts". Luxembourg makes beer and wine which is sold there and in other nearby countries. The buildings in Luxembourg vary from place to place. Some villages have charming old houses hundreds of years old, though in the cities there are many modern apartment and office buildings. For recreation, a Luxembourger might ride a bike, or hike in the countryside. A favorite sport of the people is volleyball. For transportaion they have railroads and highways for cars and buses. There are bike trails and hiking paths as well. Luxembourg doesn't have a culture all its own, because it ties in with its neighboring countries, Belgium, Germany, and France. The natural resources of Luxembourg are: iron ore, which is processed into steel, farm products such as wheat, corn and livestock, and grapes which are grown for winemaking. Technology The main industries of
are steel and winemaking. Farming is also an important industry, especially with such crops as corn, wheat and livestock. The steel is exported and crops are exported, as well as used in Luxembourg. Also the wine made in Luxembourg is exported and sold there. Culture There is a lot of culture in Luxembourg. There are many art galleries featuring work from the expressionist painter, Joseph Kutter, and also that of Edward Steichen, a well known photographer. Both of these artists are from Luxembourg. The cathedrals are examples of some of the beautiful architecture found in Luxembourg. In the villages, there are buildings dating back to the 1100's, 1300's, 1700's, as well as the early 1900's. A trip through the villages is like taking a trip through time because of these old homes that are still lived in. As far as music, every village, suburb and town has at least a band, orchestra or choral group. Luxembourgers love parades, and have them often. Every parade has at least half a dozen bands. Their enjoyment of music is so great, that at the end of every summer, Luxembourg has a music competition that involves the whole country. Government The government of
is a constitutional monarchy. The grand duke or duchess serves as monarch and chief executive. The monarchy is a hereditary office, and the sixty-four member parliament, called the Chamber of Deputies, makes the laws. The monarch appoints the prime minister and all of the ten Cabinet ministers to carry out government operations. The twenty-one member advisory body, or the Council of State, are appointed for life. The local government is carried out by dividing Luxembourg into districts, which are headed by the commissioner. The districts are divided into cantons, and these are divided into communes, which are headed by elected officials. The monarch presently in charge is Grand Duke Jean, who has been in power since 1964. Jacques Santer has been the Premier of Luxembourg since 1984. The monarch's term is for life or until he or she steps down. The Premier, appointed by the monarch, stays in leadership as long as he has the support of a majority of parliament members. The parliament members are elected by the people for five-year terms. Religion Ninety-five percent of Luxembourg is Catholic, although there are some Protestants and Jews. Although there is no information about missionary activity in Luxembourg, freedom of religion has always been a tradition there. Other Interesting Information Even though Luxembourg is an extremely small country, they have managed to stay independant. In fact, the National Motto is translated: "We want to remain what we are". The Luxembourg-based Bank of Credit and Commerce International, in 1990, pleaded guilty to charges of money laundering from drug trafficking. What I Found Most Interesting I discovered that such a small country as Luxembourg could have so much history and stay independant for over 1,000 years. GLOSSARY Ardennes: The name for the mountainous region of Luxembourg. Bon Pays: French for "good land", it refers to the fertile farmland in the southern region of Luxembourg. Expressionist Painter: An artist that paints in a style made popular after World War I, in which the painting expresses emotion, instead of just showing a scene. Hereditary: Passed on to the offspring. Monarchy: A government run by a monarch, such as a king, queen or other ruler. Bibliography Fodor's Belgium and Luxembourg. Ed. Richard Moore.