Brief History of Greenland:
Greenland, which is located between the Arctic and the Atlantic Oceans, is the world's largest island. Over 80% of the Greenland is ice capped, meaning that it is covered with ice all year round.
Greenland was first settled by a series of nomadic tribal peoples. First were the Saqqaq peoples and later came the Dorset peoples. The Dorset were mostly whale hunters. In the 10th Century AD the Vikings came to the territory. They shared the island with the Dorset and later the Thule peoples. The Danish colonized Greenland in the 18th Century and it became a part of the country of Denmark in 1953.
Today Greenland is still a part of the Danish Crown, but is self-governed. Denmark controls the area's foreign relations and defense.
The Geography of Greenland
2,166,086 square km
slightly more than three times the size of Texas
72 00 N, 40 00 W
World Region or Continent:
flat to gradually sloping icecap covers all but a narrow, mountainous, barren, rocky coast
Geographical Low Point:
Atlantic Ocean 0 m
Geographical High Point:
Gunnbjorn 3,700 m
arctic to subarctic; cool summers, cold winters
NUUK (capital) 15,000 (2009)
The People of Greenland
Type of Government:
parliamentary democracy within a constitutional monarchy
Greenlandic (East Inuit), Danish, English
none (part of the Kingdom of Denmark; foreign affairs is the responsibility of Denmark, but Greenland actively participates in international agreements relating to Greenland)
June 21 (longest day)
National Anthem or Song:
Nunarput utoqqarsuanngoravit (Our Country, Who's Become So Old also translated as You Our Ancient Land)
Economy of Greenland
fish processing (mainly shrimp and Greenland halibut); gold, niobium, tantalite, uranium, iron and diamond mining; handicrafts, hides and skins, small shipyards
forage crops, garden and greenhouse vegetables; sheep, reindeer; fish
coal, iron ore, lead, zinc, molybdenum, gold, platinum, uranium, fish, seals, whales, hydropower, possible oil and gas
fish and fish products 94% (prawns 63%)
machinery and transport equipment, manufactured goods, food, petroleum products
Danish krone (DKK)
** Source for population (2012 est.) and GDP (2011 est.) is CIA World Factbook.
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