It also has coasts on the Mediterranean Sea to the south and the English Channel to the north.
The name "France" originally was used to refer to several peoples in the lower Rhineland.
It gradually was introduced as a more widespread term to denote that territory, formerly known as Gaul, after the Frankish invasion and the retreat of the Romans.
The country’s colonial past is one reason why there are more than five million people of Arab and African descent living in France.
France has one of the largest economies in the Eurozone, after Germany.
The name "Francia" was applied to various territorial units until the Middle Ages, when it came to signify the kingdom of the French sovereign.