A Short History of Slovakia

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The earliest artifacts uncovered by Archaeologists in Slovakia date to as far as 270,000 BC. One of these is the oldest female statue carved from a mammoth bone and was found in Moravany nad Vhom. Evidences of commercial exchanges taking place has been also confirmed by the discovery of necklaces made from shells. Around 500 BC, a people known as the Celts settled in the area. They used silver coins in which the name of the Celtic Kings were written. Five hundred years later the Romans established their presence in the region. Waves of different people and culture came in and settled in afterwards.

In the 5th century, the Slavs achieved dominance over the entire area of modern Slovakia. In 863, Saint Cyril, a Byzantine missionary introduced the first Slavic alphabet and gospel written in the Slavonic language. In the early 10th century the Moravian Empire fell. The Hungarians then annexed the whole territory. During the middle ages, Slovakia survived the Mongol invasion and the famine that followed. The size and number of towns increased and the arts flourished. In the early 16th century the Hungarians themselves were annexed into the Ottoman Empire but they became independent again in the late 17th century.

By the end of the First World War, Slovakia became independent of Hungary and together with Bohemia and Moravia formed a nation called Czechoslovakia. In 1939 Slovaks declared independence and allied themselves with Germany during the Second World War. However a resistance movement waged a bloody guerrilla warfare against the Germans. After the war, Czechoslovakia was reestablished and joined the Warsaw Pact.

In 1989 communist rule ended and in 1992 Slovakia parted ways with the Czechs and once again became an independent state. It is a current member of NATO and the European Union. It has also adopted the Euro as its national currency.

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