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A CAPITAL CITY (or simply CAPITAL) is the municipality exercising primary status in a country , state , province , or other administrative region , usually as its seat of government . A capital is typically a city that physically encompasses the offices and meeting places of its respective government ; the status as capital is often designated by its law or constitution . In some jurisdictions , including several countries, the different branches of government are located in different settlements. In some cases, a distinction is made between the official (constitutional) capital and the seat of government, which is in another place.

Capital cities that are also the prime economic, cultural, or intellectual centres of a nation or an empire are sometimes referred to as primate cities . Examples include Athens
Athens
, Beijing
Beijing
, Brussels
Brussels
, Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires
, Cairo
Cairo
, London
London
, Mexico City
Mexico City
, Paris
Paris
, Stockholm
Stockholm
, Tokyo
Tokyo
, and Warsaw
Warsaw
.

News media will often use the name of a capital city as an alternative name for the country it is the capital of, e.g. "relations between Washington and London".

CONTENTS

* 1 Terminology * 2 Origins * 3 Modern capitals * 4 Planned capitals

* 5 Unusual capital city arrangements

* 5.1 Capitals that are not the seat of government * 5.2 Disputed capitals

* 6 Intergovernmental organizations * 7 Capital as symbol * 8 Capitals in military strategy * 9 See also * 10 References

TERMINOLOGY

The word capital derives from the Latin
Latin
caput, meaning "head ".

In several English-speaking states, the terms county town , county seat , and borough seat are also used in lower subdivisions. In unitary states , subnational capitals are commonly known as "administrative centres".

An alternative term is headtown. The capital is often the largest city of its constituent.

ORIGINS

The Roman Forum
Roman Forum
was surrounded by many government buildings as the capital of Ancient Rome
Ancient Rome
. The Western Wall
Western Wall
, site of one of the most important places in Jewish history, in Israel's unrecognized capital, Jerusalem
Jerusalem

Historically, the major economic centre of a state or region often becomes the focal point of political power, and becomes a capital through conquest or federation. (The modern capital city has, however, not always existed: in medieval Western Europe, a migrating form of government was more common - the itinerant court ). Examples are Ancient Babylon
Babylon
, Abbasid Baghdad , Ancient Athens
Athens
, Rome
Rome
, Constantinople
Constantinople
, Chang\'an , Ancient Cusco
Cusco
, Madrid
Madrid
, Paris
Paris
, London
London
, Moscow
Moscow
, Beijing
Beijing
, Tokyo
Tokyo
, Vienna
Vienna
, and Berlin
Berlin
. The capital city naturally attracts politically motivated people and those whose skills are needed for efficient administration of national or imperial governments, such as lawyers , political scientists , bankers , journalists , and public policy makers . Some of these cities are or were also religious centres, e.g. Constantinople
Constantinople
(more than one religion), Rome
Rome
(the Roman Catholic Church
Roman Catholic Church
), Jerusalem
Jerusalem
(more than one religion), Ancient Babylon
Babylon
, Moscow
Moscow
(the Russian Orthodox Church
Russian Orthodox Church
), Belgrade (the Serbian Orthodox Church
Serbian Orthodox Church
), Paris, and Peking
Peking
.

The convergence of political and economic or cultural power is by no means universal. Traditional capitals may be economically eclipsed by provincial rivals, e.g. Nanking by Shanghai
Shanghai
, Quebec City
Quebec City
by Montreal , and numerous US state capitals. The decline of a dynasty or culture could also mean the extinction of its capital city, as occurred at Babylon
Babylon
and Cahokia
Cahokia
.

Although many capitals are defined by constitution or legislation, many long-time capitals have no legal designation as such: for example Bern
Bern
, Edinburgh
Edinburgh
, Lisbon
Lisbon
, London
London
, Paris
Paris
, and Wellington
Wellington
. They are recognised as capitals as a matter of convention, and because all or almost all the country's central political institutions, such as government departments, supreme court, legislature, embassies, etc., are located in or near them.

MODERN CAPITALS

Tehran
Tehran
, capital and biggest city of Iran
Iran
, with the Alborz Mountains in the background

Counties in the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
have historic county towns, which are often not the largest settlement within the county and often are no longer administrative centres, as many historical counties are now only ceremonial, and administrative boundaries are different.

In Canada
Canada
, there is a federal capital , while the ten provinces and three territories all have capital cities. The states of such countries as Mexico
Mexico
, Brazil
Brazil
(including the famous cities of Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo
São Paulo
, capitals of their respective states), and Australia
Australia
all have capital cities. For example, the six state capitals of Australia
Australia
are Adelaide
Adelaide
; Brisbane
Brisbane
; Hobart
Hobart
; Melbourne
Melbourne
; Perth
Perth
; and Sydney
Sydney
. In Australia, the term "capital cities" is regularly used, to refer to the aforementioned state capitals plus the federal capital Canberra
Canberra
and Darwin , the capital of the Northern Territory
Northern Territory
. Abu Dhabi is the capital city of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi and the United Arab Emirates
United Arab Emirates
overall.

In unitary states which consist of multiple constituent countries, such as the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
or the Kingdom of Denmark , each country will usually have a capital city. Unlike in federations, there is usually not a separate national capital, but rather the capital city of one constituent country will also be the capital of the state overall, such as London
London
, which is the capital of England
England
and the United Kingdom. Similarly, each of the autonomous communities of Spain and regions of Italy
Italy
has a capital city, such as Seville
Seville
or Naples
Naples
, while Madrid
Madrid
is the capital of the Community of Madrid
Madrid
and the Kingdom of Spain
Spain
as a whole, while Rome
Rome
is the capital of Italy
Italy
and the region of Lazio .

In the Federal Republic of Germany
Germany
, each of its constituent states (or Länder - plural of Land) has its own capital city, such as Dresden
Dresden
, Wiesbaden
Wiesbaden
, Mainz
Mainz
, Düsseldorf
Düsseldorf
, Stuttgart
Stuttgart
, and Munich
Munich
, as do all of the republics of the Russian Federation . The national capitals of Germany
Germany
and Russia: the Stadtstaat of Berlin
Berlin
and the Federal City of Moscow
Moscow
, are also constituent states of both countries in their own right. Each of the States of Austria
States of Austria
and Cantons of Switzerland
Switzerland
also have their own capital cities. Vienna
Vienna
, the national capital of Austria
Austria
is also one of the states, while Bern
Bern
is the capital of both Switzerland
Switzerland
and the Canton of Bern
Bern
.

Most national capitals are also the largest city in their respective countries.

PLANNED CAPITALS

The L\'Enfant Plan for Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C.
, the capital of the United States
United States

Governing entities sometimes plan, design and build new capital cities to house the seat of government of a polity or of a subdivision. Deliberately planned and designed capitals include:

* La Plata
La Plata
, Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires
Province , Argentina
Argentina
* Abuja
Abuja
, Nigeria (1991) * Aracaju , Sergipe, Brazil
Brazil
(1855) * Ankara
Ankara
, Turkey
Turkey
(1923) * Astana
Astana
, Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan
(1997) * Austin, Texas
Austin, Texas
, USA (1839) * Belmopan , Belize (1970) * Belo Horizonte , Minas Gerais, Brazil
Brazil
(1897) * Brasília , Brazil
Brazil
(1960) * Bhubaneswar
Bhubaneswar
, Odisha, India
India
(1948) * Constantinople
Constantinople
, Roman Empire
Empire
(324-330) * Dhaka
Dhaka
, Bangladesh (1971) * Canberra
Canberra
, Australia
Australia
(1927) * Chandigarh
Chandigarh
, Punjab and Haryana, India
India
(1966) * Gandhinagar
Gandhinagar
, Gujarat, India
India
(1960) * Goiânia , Goiás, Brazil
Brazil
(1933) * Indianapolis
Indianapolis
, Indiana, USA (1825) * Islamabad
Islamabad
, Pakistan
Pakistan
(1960) * Frankfort, Kentucky , USA (1792) * Jefferson City, Missouri , USA (1821) * Jhongsing New Village , Taiwan
Taiwan
(1955) * Naypyidaw
Naypyidaw
, Burma
Burma
(2005-2006) * New Delhi
New Delhi
, India
India
(1911) * Oklahoma City
Oklahoma City
, Oklahoma, USA (1889) * Ottawa
Ottawa
, Ontario
Ontario
, Canada
Canada
(1857) * Palmas , Tocantins, Brazil
Brazil
(1989) * Quezon City
Quezon City
, Philippines
Philippines
(1948–76) * Raleigh, North Carolina , USA (1792) * Valletta
Valletta
, Malta (1571) * Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C.
, USA (1800) * Wellington
Wellington
, New Zealand
New Zealand
(moved in 1865)

These cities satisfy one or both of the following criteria:

* A deliberately planned city that was built expressly to house the seat of government, superseding a capital city that was in an established population center. There have been various reasons for this, including overcrowding in that major metropolitan area, and the desire to place the capital city in a location with a better climate (usually a less tropical one). * A town that was chosen as a compromise among two or more cities (or other political divisions), none of which was willing to concede to the other(s) the privilege of being the capital city. Usually, the new capital is geographically located roughly equidistant between the competing population centres.

The Australian Parliament opened in the small town of Canberra in 1927 as a compromise between the largest cities, Sydney
Sydney
and Melbourne
Melbourne
.

Some examples of the second situation (compromise locations) include:

* Canberra
Canberra
, Australia, chosen as a compromise located between Melbourne
Melbourne
and Sydney. * Frankfort, Kentucky , midway between Louisville and Lexington, Kentucky . * Ottawa, Ontario
Ontario
, Canada, located along the boundary between the Province of Ontario
Ontario
and the Province of Quebec – the two most populous of the ten provinces – and midway between their respective provincial capitals, Toronto, Ontario
Ontario
and Quebec City, Quebec . * Tallahassee , Florida
Florida
, chosen as the midpoint between Pensacola and St. Augustine, Florida
Florida
- then the two largest cities in Florida. * Wellington
Wellington
became the capital city of New Zealand
New Zealand
in 1865. It lies at the southern tip of the North Island of New Zealand, the smaller of New Zealand's two main islands (which subsequently became the more populous island, ) immediately across Cook Strait
Cook Strait
from the South Island . The previous capital, Auckland
Auckland
, lies much further north in the North Island; the move followed a long argument for a more central location for parliament.

Changes in a nation's political regime sometimes result in the designation of a new capital. Newly-independent Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan
moved its capital to the existing city of Astana
Astana
. Naypyidaw
Naypyidaw
was founded in Burma
Burma
's interior as the former capital, Rangoon , was claimed to be too overcrowded.

UNUSUAL CAPITAL CITY ARRANGEMENTS

See also: List of countries with multiple capitals The Supreme Court
Court
, the seat of Switzerland
Switzerland
's judiciary, is in Lausanne
Lausanne
, although the executive and legislature are located in Bern
Bern
. Parliament House, Singapore
Parliament House, Singapore
. As a city-state , Singapore
Singapore
requires no specific capital. The Blue Palace
Blue Palace
, the official residence of Montenegro
Montenegro
's president, is in Cetinje , although the executive and legislature are located in Podgorica
Podgorica
.

A number of cases exist where states have multiple capitals, and there are also several states that have no capital. Some have a city as the capital but with most government agencies elsewhere.

There is also a ghost town which currently serves as the de jure capital of a territory: Plymouth in Montserrat .

* Chile
Chile
: Santiago
Santiago
is the capital even though the National Congress of Chile
Chile
meets in Valparaíso . * Czech Republic
Czech Republic
: Prague
Prague
is the sole constitutional capital. Brno is home to all three of the country's highest courts , making it the de facto capital of the Czech judicial branch . * Estonia
Estonia
: the Supreme Court
Court
and the Ministry of Education and Research are located in Tartu
Tartu
. * Finland
Finland
: During the summer, the President resides at the Kultaranta in Naantali ; presidential sessions of the government are held there as well. * France
France
: The French constitution does not recognise any capital city in France. By law Paris
Paris
is the seat of both houses of Parliament (the National Assembly and the Senate ), but their joint congresses are held at the Palace of Versailles . In case of emergency, the seat of the constitutional powers can be transferred in another town, in order for the Houses of Parliament to keep seating in the same location of the President and Cabinet. * Germany
Germany
: The official capital Berlin
Berlin
is home to the parliament and the highest bodies of the executive branch (consisting of the ceremonial presidency and effective chancellery ). Various ministries are located in the former West German capital of Bonn
Bonn
, which now has the title " Federal City ". The Federal Constitutional Court
Court
has its seat in Karlsruhe
Karlsruhe
which, as a consequence, is sometimes called Germany's "judicial capital"; none of Germany's highest judicial organs are located in Berlin. Various German government agencies are located in other parts of Germany. * South Korea
South Korea
: Seoul
Seoul
remains as the capital and seat of the government's branches, but many government agencies have moved to Sejong City . * Malaysia
Malaysia
: Kuala Lumpur
Kuala Lumpur
is the constitutional capital, home of the King , and seat of Parliament , but the federal administrative centre and judiciary were moved 30 kilometres (19 mi) south to Putrajaya . * Montenegro
Montenegro
: The official capital Podgorica
Podgorica
is home to the parliament and the executive, but the seat of the presidency is in the former royal capital of Cetinje . * Myanmar
Myanmar
( Burma
Burma
): Naypyidaw
Naypyidaw
was designated the national capital in 2005, the same year it was founded, but most government offices and embassies are still located in Yangon
Yangon
( Rangoon ). * Nauru
Nauru
: Nauru, a microstate of only 21 square kilometres (8.1 sq mi), has no distinct capital city, and thus has a capital district instead. * Pakistan
Pakistan
: Islamabad
Islamabad
is a purpose build capital city, construction stated in 1960 and by 1966 building of an entirely new city was completed, replacing the traditional capital Karachi
Karachi
with Rawalpindi being used in the interim. * Portugal
Portugal
: The Portuguese constitution has no reference to a capital. Although Lisbon
Lisbon
is home to the parliament , the presidency , and the judiciary, no Portuguese official document states that Lisbon is the national capital. * Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka
: Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte is the official capital and the location of the parliament, while the former capital, Colombo
Colombo
, is now designated as the "commercial capital". However, many government offices are still located in Colombo. Both cities are in the Colombo District
District
. * South Africa
South Africa
: The administrative capital is Pretoria
Pretoria
, the legislative capital is Cape Town
Cape Town
, and the judicial capital is Bloemfontein
Bloemfontein
. This is the outcome of the compromise that created the Union of South Africa
South Africa
in 1910. * Switzerland
Switzerland
: Bern
Bern
is the Federal City of Switzerland
Switzerland
and functions as de facto capital. However, the Swiss Supreme Court
Court
is located in Lausanne
Lausanne
. * Tanzania
Tanzania
: Dodoma
Dodoma
was designated the national capital in 1996, but most government offices and embassies are still located in Dar es Salaam . * Monaco
Monaco
, Singapore
Singapore
, and the Vatican City
Vatican City
as well as the territories of Hong Kong
Hong Kong
and Macau
Macau
are city-states , and thus do not contain any distinct capital city as a whole. However, in Singapore's case, the main judiciary and legislative offices are located in the Downtown Core . Similarly, while Victoria was the capital of colonial Hong Kong, the district of Central serves as the seat of government offices today. * Canary Islands
Canary Islands
( Spain
Spain
): Until 1927 the capital of the Province of Canarias was Santa Cruz de Tenerife
Santa Cruz de Tenerife
. When the Canary Islands became an autonomous community in 1982, Santa Cruz de Tenerife
Santa Cruz de Tenerife
and Las Palmas de Gran Canaria were both given capital status. There is currently a balance of institutions between the two capitals, in fact the Canary Islands
Canary Islands
is the only autonomous community in Spain
Spain
which has two capitals.

* U.S. states :

* California
California
: The executive and legislative branches and most government agencies are based in Sacramento
Sacramento
but the California
California
Supreme Court
Court
is headquartered in San Francisco
San Francisco
. * Illinois
Illinois
: Springfield has the seats of the branches of government and serves as the official capital. However various Illinois
Illinois
government officials primarily reside in and/or are primarily active in Chicago
Chicago
(see: Government_of_Illinois#Capital_city for a further explanation) * Louisiana
Louisiana
: The executive and legislative branches and most government agencies are based in Baton Rouge , but the Louisiana Supreme Court
Court
is located in New Orleans
New Orleans
.

CAPITALS THAT ARE NOT THE SEAT OF GOVERNMENT

There are several countries where, for various reasons, the official capital and de facto seat of government are separated:

* Benin
Benin
: Porto-Novo is the official capital, but Cotonou is the seat of government. * Bolivia
Bolivia
: Sucre is the constitutional capital, the supreme tribunal of justice is located in Sucre, making it the judicial capital. The palacio quemado , the national congress and national electoral court are located in La Paz , making it the seat of government. * Ivory Coast
Ivory Coast
: Yamoussoukro
Yamoussoukro
was designated the national capital in 1983, but most government offices and embassies are still located in Abidjan
Abidjan
. * Georgia : Since 2012, the seat of government has been Kutaisi
Kutaisi
, but the President 's residence and the Supreme Court
Court
remain in Tbilisi , the official capital. * Netherlands
Netherlands
: Amsterdam
Amsterdam
is the constitutional national capital even though the Dutch government , the parliament , the supreme court , the Council of State , and the work palace of the King are all located in The Hague
The Hague
, as are all the embassies. (For more details see: Capital of the Netherlands
Netherlands
.) * Philippines
Philippines
: Presidential Decree No. 940, issued on June 24, 1976, designates the whole of Metropolitan Manila as the seat of government, with the City
City
of Manila
Manila
as the capital.

DISPUTED CAPITALS

* Israel
Israel
and Palestine : Jerusalem
Jerusalem
is claimed as the capital of both Israel
Israel
and Palestine . Israel's presidential residence, government offices, supreme court and parliament ( Knesset ) are located there, but the UN and most countries take the position that the final status of Jerusalem
Jerusalem
is unsettled pending future negotiations. Most countries maintain their diplomatic missions to Israel
Israel
in Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv
, while diplomatic missions to Palestine are in various places such as Ramallah
Ramallah
, Gaza City
Gaza City
, Cairo
Cairo
and Damascus
Damascus
.

INTERGOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS

United Nations Headquarters
United Nations Headquarters
, New York

* European Union
European Union
(see details ): Brussels
Brussels
is generally considered as the seat of the European Union
European Union
, alongside Strasbourg
Strasbourg
where the European Parliament has its official seat and votes because it hosts the major institutions of the EU . The judiciary and some of the executive's work are located in Luxembourg and other bodies and agencies in other cities. Although the main seats are fixed in the EU's treaties which form its legal basis, they do not use the term "capital" for any city.

* Europol : The Hague
The Hague

* United Nations
United Nations
: New York City
New York City
is the main meeting place of the highest bodies of the UN, but significant parts of its structure exist in other cities, notably Vienna
Vienna
, Geneva
Geneva
, Nairobi
Nairobi
and The Hague
The Hague
.

* United Nations
United Nations
Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization : Paris
Paris
* Food and Agriculture Organization
Food and Agriculture Organization
: Rome
Rome

* African Union : Addis Ababa
Addis Ababa
and Midrand
Midrand
* Andean Parliament : Bogotá
Bogotá
* Arab League
Arab League
: Cairo
Cairo
* Asian Development Bank : Manila
Manila
* Association of Southeast Asian Nations : Jakarta
Jakarta
* Commonwealth of Nations
Commonwealth of Nations
: London
London
* European Food Safety Authority : Parma
Parma
* European Organization for Nuclear Research : Meyrin , a suburb of Geneva
Geneva
* Helsinki
Helsinki
Commission : Helsinki
Helsinki
* International Court
Court
of Justice : The Hague
The Hague
* International Organization for Standardization
International Organization for Standardization
: Geneva
Geneva
* Interpol
Interpol
: Lyon
Lyon
* North Atlantic Treaty Organization
North Atlantic Treaty Organization
: Brussels
Brussels
* Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
: Paris
Paris
* Organisation of Islamic Cooperation : Jeddah
Jeddah
* Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe : Vienna
Vienna
* Organization of American States : Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C.
* Organization of Ibero-American States : Madrid
Madrid
* South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation : Kathmandu
Kathmandu
* Union of South American Nations : Cochabamba
Cochabamba
and Quito
Quito
* World Bank
World Bank
: Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C.
* World Tourism Organization : Madrid
Madrid

CAPITAL AS SYMBOL

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With the rise of modern empires and the nation-state , the capital city has become a symbol for the state and its government , and imbued with political meaning. Unlike medieval capitals, which were declared wherever a monarch held his or her court, the selection, relocation, founding, or capture of a modern capital city is an emotional event. For example:

* The ruined and almost uninhabited Athens
Athens
was made capital of newly independent Greece
Greece
in 1834, four years after the country gained its independence, with the romantic notion of reviving the glory of Ancient Greece
Greece
. Similarly, following the Cold War
Cold War
and German reunification , Berlin
Berlin
is now once again the capital of Germany. Other restored capital cities include Moscow
Moscow
after the October Revolution . * A symbolic relocation of a capital city to a geographically or demographically peripheral location may be for either economic or strategic reasons (sometimes known as a FORWARD CAPITAL or spearhead capital). Peter the Great moved his government from Moscow
Moscow
to Saint Petersburg to give the Russian Empire
Empire
a western orientation. The economically significant city of Nafplion became the first capital of Greece
Greece
, when Athens
Athens
was an unimportant village. The Ming emperors moved their capital to Peking
Peking
from the more central Nanking to help supervise the border with the Mongols. During the 1857 rebellion, Indian rebels considered Delhi
Delhi
their capital, and Bahadur Shah Zafar was proclaimed emperor, but the ruling British had their capital in Calcutta . In 1877, the British formally held a 'Durbar ' in Delhi, proclaiming Queen Victoria
Queen Victoria
as 'Empress of India
India
'. Delhi
Delhi
finally became the colonial capital after the Coronation Durbar of King-Emperor George V
George V
in 1911, continuing as independent India's capital from 1947. Other examples include Abuja
Abuja
, Astana
Astana
, Brasília , Helsinki
Helsinki
, Islamabad
Islamabad
, Naypyidaw
Naypyidaw
and Yamoussoukro
Yamoussoukro
. * The selection or founding of a "neutral" capital city, one unencumbered by regional or political identities, was meant to represent the unity of a new state when Ankara
Ankara
, Turkey
Turkey
; Bern
Bern
, Switzerland
Switzerland
; Canberra
Canberra
, Australia
Australia
; Madrid
Madrid
; Ottawa
Ottawa
; Washington, D.C. ; and Wellington
Wellington
, New Zealand
New Zealand
became capital cities. Sometimes, the location of a new capital city was chosen to terminate squabbling or possible squabbling between various entities, such as in the cases of Canberra, Ottawa, Washington, and Wellington. * The British-built town of New Delhi
New Delhi
represented a simultaneous break and continuity with the past, the location of Delhi
Delhi
being where many imperial capitals were built (Indraprastha, Dhillika, and Shahjahanabad) but the actual capital being the new British-built town designed by Edwin Lutyens . Wellington, on the southwestern tip of the North Island of New Zealand
New Zealand
, replaced the much more northerly city of Auckland
Auckland
in to place the national capital close to the South Island and hence to placate its residents, many of whom sympathies with separatism. * During the American Civil War
American Civil War
, tremendous resources were expended to defend Washington, D.C., which actually bordered on the Confederate States of America (with the Commonwealth of Virginia
Virginia
), from Confederate attack even though the relatively small federal government could easily have been moved elsewhere. Likewise, great resources were expended by the Confederacy in defending the Confederate capital from attack by the Union, in its exposed location of Richmond, Virginia
Virginia
, barely 100 miles (160 km) south of Washington.

CAPITALS IN MILITARY STRATEGY

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Constantinople
Constantinople
, the capital of the Byzantine Empire
Empire
, was the final part of the empire to fall to the Ottoman Turks due to its strong defences.

The capital city is usually but not always a primary target in a war, as capturing it usually guarantees capture of much of the enemy government, victory for the attacking forces, or at the very least demoralization for the defeated forces.

In ancient China
China
, where governments were massive centralized bureaucracies with little flexibility on the provincial level, a dynasty could easily be toppled with the fall of its capital. In the Three Kingdoms period, both Shu and Wu fell when their respective capitals of Chengdu
Chengdu
and Jianye fell. The Ming dynasty relocated its capital from Nanjing
Nanjing
to Beijing
Beijing
, where they could more effectively control the generals and troops guarding the borders from Mongols
Mongols
and Manchus
Manchus
. The Ming was destroyed when the Li Zicheng took their seat of power, and this pattern repeats itself in Chinese history, until the fall of the traditional Confucian monarchy in the 20th century. After the Qing Dynasty
Qing Dynasty
's collapse, decentralization of authority and improved transportation and communication technologies allowed both the Chinese Nationalists and Chinese Communists to rapidly relocate capitals and keep their leadership structures intact during the great crisis of Japanese invasion .

National capitals were arguably less important as military objectives in other parts of the world, including the West, because of socioeconomic trends toward localized authority, a strategic modus operandi especially popular after the development of feudalism and reaffirmed by the development of democratic and capitalistic philosophies. In 1204, after the Latin
Latin
Crusaders captured the Byzantine capital, Constantinople
Constantinople
, Byzantine forces were able to regroup in several provinces; provincial noblemen managed to reconquer the capital after 60 years and preserve the empire for another 200 years after that. The British forces sacked various American capitals repeatedly during the Revolutionary War and War of 1812
War of 1812
, but American forces could still carry on fighting from the countryside, where they enjoyed support from local governments and the traditionally independent civilian frontiersmen. Exceptions to these generalizations include highly centralized states such as France
France
, whose centralized bureaucracies could effectively coordinate far-flung resources, giving the state a powerful advantage over less coherent rivals, but risking utter ruin if the capital were taken. In their military strategies, traditional enemies of France
France
such as Prussia
Prussia
(in the Franco-Prussian War of 1871) focused on the capture of Paris
Paris
.

SEE ALSO

Wikimedia Commons has media related to CAPITALS .

* Capital region * List of capital cities by altitude * List of national capitals and largest cities by country * List of capitals outside the territories they serve * List of former national capitals * List of national capitals in alphabetical order * Temporary capital

REFERENCES

* ^ "What does a Capital City
City
Mean?". 5 December 2012. Retrieved 9 June 2017. * ^ "Where Next: The Reasons Why (Some) Countries Move Their Capitals". Retrieved 9 June 2017. * ^ Makas, Emily Gunzburger; Conley, Tanja Damljanovic (4 December 2009). "Capital Cities in the Aftermath of Empires: Planning in Central and Southeastern Europe". Routledge. Retrieved 9 June 2017 – via Google Books. * ^ Seymour, Michael (29 August 2014). "Babylon: Legend, History and the Ancient City". I.B.Tauris. Retrieved 9 June 2017 – via Google Books. * ^ "The South Island
South Island
was the more densely populated from 1860 until 1900, largely because of the discovery of gold in the sixties, the relatively easy availability of land, and the South Island\'s freedom from Maori troubles. After 1900, when the populations of the two islands were roughly equal, the North Island went ahead rapidly." * ^ Levine, Stephen (13 July 2012). " Capital city
Capital city
- A new capital". Te Ara: The Encyclopedia of New Zealand
New Zealand
. Retrieved 4 May 2015. * ^ Pedrosa, Veronica (20 November 2006). "Burma\'s \'seat of the kings\'". Al Jazeera
Al Jazeera
. Archived from the original on 23 November 2006. Retrieved 21 November 2006. * ^ Ordonnance n° 58-1100 du 17 novembre 1958 relative au fonctionnement des assemblées parlementaires article 1 * ^ "Lisboa não tem documento que a oficialize como capital de Portugal", Revista Port.com (in Portuguese), April 13, 2015, retrieved November 5, 2016 * ^ "Tanzania". CIA World Factbook. * ^ Real Decreto de 30 de noviembre de 1833 en wikisource * ^ Real Decreto de 30 de noviembre de 1833 en el sitio web oficial del Gobierno de Canarias * ^ Reeder, Scott. "What does it cost taxpayers to pay for lawmakers’ empty Springfield residences?" (Archive). Illinois
Illinois
News Network . September 11, 2014. Retrieved on May 26, 2016. * ^ Gauen, Pat. " Illinois
Illinois
corruption explained: the capital is too far from Chicago
Chicago
" (Archive). St. Louis Post-Dispatch . Retrieved on May 26, 2016. * ^ "Presidential Decree No. 940 : Philippine Laws, Statutes and Codes". Chan Robles Virtual Law
Law
Library. 1976-06-24. Retrieved 2014-04-20. * ^ See Jerusalem
Jerusalem
Law
Law
* ^ 2003 Basic Law
Law
of Palestine, Title One: Article 3 * ^ Demey, Thierry (2007). Brussels, capital of Europe. S. Strange (trans.). Brussels: Badeaux. ISBN 2-9600414-2-9 .

* v * t * e

Designations for types of administrative territorial entities

ENGLISH TERMS

COMMON ENGLISH TERMS1

AREA

* Insular area * Local government area * Protected area
Protected area
* Special
Special
area

* Statistical area

* Combined statistical area
Combined statistical area
* Metropolitan statistical area
Metropolitan statistical area
* Micropolitan statistical area
Micropolitan statistical area

* Urban area
Urban area

CANTON Half-canton

BOROUGH

* County borough * Metropolitan borough

CAPITAL

* Federal capital * Imperial capital

CITY

* City
City
state * Autonomous city * Charter city * Independent city * Incorporated city * Imperial city * Free imperial city
Free imperial city
* Royal free city

COMMUNITY

* Autonomous community * Residential community

COUNTY

* Administrative county * Autonomous county * Consolidated city-county

* Metropolitan county

* Non-metropolitan

* Viscountcy

COUNTRY

* Overseas country
Overseas country

DEPARTMENT

* Overseas department
Overseas department

DISTRICT

* Capital district * City
City
district * Congressional district * Electoral district * Federal district * Indian government district * Land district

* Metropolitan district

* Non-metropolitan district
Non-metropolitan district

* Military district * Municipal district * Police district * Regional district * Rural district * Sanitary district * Subdistrict * Urban district * Special
Special
district

DIVISION

* Census division * Police division * Subdivision

MUNICIPALITY

* County
County
municipality

* Norway * Nova Scotia * Regional county municipality

* Direct-controlled municipality * District
District
municipality * Mountain resort municipality * Neutral municipality * Regional municipality * Resort municipality * Rural municipality * Specialized municipality

PREFECTURE

* Autonomous prefecture * Subprefecture
Subprefecture
* Super-prefecture * Praetorian prefecture

PROVINCE

* Autonomous province * Overseas province * Roman province
Roman province

REGION

* Administrative region * Autonomous region * Capital region * Development region * Economic region * Mesoregion * Microregion
Microregion
* Overseas region
Overseas region
* Planning region * Special
Special
administrative region * Statistical region * Subregion

RESERVE

* Biosphere reserve
Biosphere reserve
* Ecological reserve * Game reserve * Indian reserve * Nature reserve

STATE

* Federal state
Federal state
* Free state * Sovereign state
Sovereign state

TERRITORY

* Capital territory

* Federal capital territory

* Dependent territory * Federal territory
Federal territory
* Military territory * Organized incorporated territory * Overseas territory * Union territory * Unorganized territory

TOWN

* Census town * Market town
Market town

TOWNSHIP

* Charter township * Civil township
Civil township
* Paper township * Survey township * Urban township

UNIT

* Autonomous territorial unit * Local administrative unit * Municipal unit * Regional unit

ZONE

* Economic zone

* Exclusive economic zone * Free economic zone * Special
Special
economic zone

* Free-trade zone * Neutral zone * Self-administered zone

OTHER ENGLISH TERMS

CURRENT

* Alpine resort * Bailiwick

* Banner

* Autonomous

* Block * Cadastre * Circle * Circuit * Colony
Colony
* Commune * Condominium * Constituency * Duchy
Duchy
* Eldership * Emirate * Federal dependency * Governorate * Hamlet * Ilkhanate * Indian reservation

* Manor
Manor

* Royal

* Muftiate * Neighbourhood
Neighbourhood
* Parish * Periphery * Precinct
Precinct
* Principality
Principality
* Protectorate * Quarter * Regency * Autonomous republic * Riding

* Sector

* Autonomous

* Shire
Shire
* Sultanate * Suzerainty * Townland
Townland

* Village
Village

* Administrative * Summer

* Ward *

HISTORICAL

* Agency * Barony * Burgh
Burgh
* Exarchate * Hide * Hundred * Imperial Circle * March * Monthon * Presidency * Residency * Roman diocese * Seat * Tenth * Tithing

NON-ENGLISH OR LOANWORDS

CURRENT

* Amt * Bakhsh * Barangay
Barangay
* Bezirk * Regierungsbezirk * Comune
Comune
* Frazione * Fu * Gemeinde * Județ

* Kunta / kommun

* Finland
Finland
* Sweden

* Län * Località * Megye * Muban

* Oblast
Oblast

* Autonomous

* Okrug * Ostān * Poblacion
Poblacion
* Purok
Purok
* Shahrestān * Sum * Sýsla * Tehsil * Vingtaine

HISTORICAL

* Commote
Commote
* Gau * Heerlijkheid * Köping * Maalaiskunta

* Nome

* Egypt * Greece
Greece

* Pagus * Pargana * Plasă * Satrapy * Subah * Syssel * Zhou

* v * t * e

Arabic
Arabic
terms for country subdivisions

FIRST-LEVEL

* Muhafazah (محافظة governorate) * Wilayah (ولاية province) * Mintaqah (منطقة region) * Mudiriyah (مديرية directorate) * Imarah (إمارة emirate) * Baladiyah (بلدية municipality) * Shabiyah (شعبية "popularate")

SECOND / THIRD-LEVEL

* Mintaqah (منطقة region) * Qadaa (قضاء district) * Nahiyah (ناحية subdistrict) * Markaz (مركز district) * Mutamadiyah (معتمدية "delegation") * Daerah / Daïra (دائرة circle) * Liwa (لواء banner / sanjak )

CITY / TOWNSHIP-LEVEL

* Amanah (أمانة municipality) * Baladiyah (بلدية municipality) * Ḥai (حي neighborhood / quarter) * Mahallah (محلة) * Qarya (قرية) * Sheyakhah (شياخة "neighborhood subdivision")

English translations given are those most commonly used.

* v * t * e

French terms for country subdivisions

* arrondissement * département * préfecture * subprefectures

* v * t * e

Greek terms for country subdivisions

MODERN

* apokentromenes dioikiseis / geniki dioikisis § / diamerisma § / periphereia * nomos § / periphereiaki enotita * demos / eparchia § / koinotita §

HISTORICAL

* archontia/archontaton * bandon * demos * despotaton * dioikesis * doukaton * droungos * eparchia * exarchaton * katepanikion * kephalatikion * kleisoura * meris * naukrareia * satrapeia * strategis * thema * toparchia * tourma

§ signifies a defunct institution

* v * t * e

Portuguese terms for country subdivisions

REGIONAL SUBDIVISIONS

* Estado * Distrito federal * Província * Região * Distrito * Comarca * Capitania

LOCAL SUBDIVISIONS

* Município * Concelho * Freguesia
Freguesia
* Comuna * Circunscrição

SETLEMENTS

* Cidade * Vila * Aldeia * Bairro
Bairro
* Lugar

* Historical subdivisions in italics.

* v * t * e

Slavic terms for country subdivisions

CURRENT

* dzielnica * gmina * krai * kraj * krajina / pokrajina * městys * obec * oblast / oblast\' / oblasti / oblys / obwód / voblast\' * okręg * okres * okrug * opština / općina / občina / obshtina * osiedle * powiat / povit * raion * selsoviet / silrada * sołectwo * voivodeship / vojvodina * županija

HISTORICAL

* darugha * gromada * guberniya / gubernia * jurydyka * khutor * obshchina * okolia * opole * pogost * prowincja * sorok * srez * starostwo / starostva * uyezd * volost * ziemia * župa

* v * t * e

Spanish terms for country subdivisions

NATIONAL, FEDERAL

* Comunidad autónoma * Departamento * Distrito federal * Estado * Provincia * Región

REGIONAL, METROPOLITAN

* Cantón * Comarca * Comuna * Corregimiento * Delegación * Distrito * Mancomunidad * Merindad * Municipalidad * Municipio
Municipio

* Parroquia

* Ecuador * Spain
Spain

URBAN, RURAL

* Aldea * Alquería * Anteiglesia

* Asentamiento

* Asentamiento informal * Pueblos jóvenes

* Barrio * Campamento * Caserío

* Ciudad

* Ciudad autónoma

* Colonia * Lugar * Masía * Población * Ranchería * Sitio
Sitio
* Vereda * Villa
Villa
* Village
Village
(Pueblito/Pueblo)

* Historical subdivisions in italics.

* v * t * e

Turkish terms for country subdivisions

MODERN

* il (province) * ilçe (district) * şehir (city) * kasaba (town) * belediye (municipality) * belde (community) * köy (village) * mahalle (neighbourhood/quarter)

HISTORICAL

* ağalık (feudal district) * bucak (subdistrict) * beylerbeylik (province) * kadılık (subprovince) * kaza (sub-province) * hidivlik (viceroyalty) * mutasarrıflık (subprovince) * nahiye (nahiyah) * paşalık (province) * reya (Romanian principalities) * sancak (prefecture) * vilayet (province) * voyvodalık (Romanian provinces)

1 Used by ten or more countries or having derived terms. Historical derivations in italics. See also: Census division , Electoral district , Political division , and List of administrative divisions by country

AUTHORITY CONTROL

* LCCN : sh85019972 * GND : 4127960-8 * NDL

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