Geneva (French: Genève, German: Genf, Italian: Ginevra, Spanish: Ginebra) is the second-most populous city in Switzerland (after Zurich), located where Lake Geneva (French: Lac de Genève or Lac Léman) empties into the Rhône River. It is the capital of the Canton of Geneva.
Genava was the name of a settlement of the Celtic people of the Allobroges, and the name of Genava (or Genua) in Latin appeared for the first time in the writings of Julius Caesar in De Bello Gallico, his comments on the Gallic Wars. Its name is probably identical in origin to the name of the Ligurian city of Genua (modern Genoa), meaning "knee" (from Proto-Indo-European *genu 'knee'), i.e. "angle", referring to its geographical position. After the Roman conquest it became part of the Provincia Romana (Gallia Narbonensis). In 58 BCE, at Geneva, Caesar hemmed in the Helvetii on their westward march. In the 9th century it became the capital of Burgundy. Though Geneva was contested between Burgundians and Franks and the Holy Roman Emperors, in practice it was ruled by its bishops, until the Reformation, when Geneva became a republic.
Due to the work of reformers such as John Calvin, Geneva was sometimes dubbed the Protestant Rome. In the 16th century Geneva was the center of Calvinism; the old town St Peter's Cathedral (Temple St-Pierre) was John Calvin's own church.
Geneva is the seat of many international organizations, including the World Trade Organization, CERN, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), the World Council of Churches and several United Nations organizations, such as the World Health Organization, the International Labour Organization, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, United Nations Children's Fund, the World Intellectual Property Organization etc. Geneva also hosts The International Committee of the Red Cross and Amnesty International. It was also the seat of the League of Nations until its dissolution.
Notable sights in Geneva include its Clock Museum, Art & History Museum and the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Museum.
Geneva's most visible landmark however is not a museum, church or tower, but a fountain: the Jet d'Eau, (water-jet), situated in Lake Geneva and visible throughout the city for its 140 metre high water column.
Sources: National Office of Statistics (http://www.statistik.admin.ch/stat_ch/ber01/fu0104.htm) and Statistique Genève (http://www.geneve.ch/statistique/statistiques/communes/commune.asp?choix=population&commune=commune21)
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