- The official name of the country is Հայաստանի Հանրապետություն (Hayastani Hanrapetutyun), translated as the Republic of Armenia.
- Ethnicity. Armenia was the most ethnically homogeneous republic of the 15 republics that made up the USSR, and the country still has ethnic homogeneity. Ethnic Armenians, or Hay, make up most of the population. Kurds and Russians are the next two largest ethnic groups in the republic. Small numbers of Ukrainians, Assyrians, Greeks, and Georgians also live in Armenia. Azerbaijanis were the largest minority group during the Soviet period, but in the early 1990s nearly the entire Azerbaijani population fled because of ethnic tension.
- Geography. Armenia is slightly smaller than Maryland. Contemporary Armenia is a fraction of the size of ancient Armenia. It is a landlocked country strategically located between Europe and Asia. It is in the Transcaucasia region, between the Black and Caspian Seas, bordered on the north and east by Georgia, The Nagorno-Karabakh Republic (a de facto independent but unrecognized state of Azerbaijan), Naxicevan (an exclave and autonomous republic of Azerbaijan), and Azerbaijan, and on the south and west by Iran and Turkey. The terrain is mostly mountainous and flat, with fast flowing rivers and few forests but with many trees.
- Climate. The climate is highland continental with hot summers and cold winters. It is an area of such subtropical plants as oranges, lemons, olives and other plants.
- History. In 800 BCE the area became part of the Kingdom of Urartu and in 600 BCE the Kingdom of Armenia was established. Between 95 and 66 BCE the Kingdon of Armenia became a great and powerful nation. In 301 AD Armenia became the first country to adopt Christianity as an official state religion. Armenia became an independent state between 1918 and 1920 but in 1922 it was made part of Soviet Socialist Republic. With the fall of the Soviet Union, Armenia once again became an independent country on September 21, 1991.
- Etymology. The origin of the name Armenia is unknown, but was used as early as the 6th century. Theories include that the name was from the mountainous region of the Minni (a biblical tribe), from a Bronze Age tribe called Armens, or from the Assyrian place called Armânum. Armenian tradition says that the name came from the Armenian ancestor Aram, the earliest known king of Urartu. The Armenians call themselves Hayk, name of the legendary forefather of the Armenian people, supposedly a great-great-grandson of Noah.
- Economy. Agriculture is one of the most important sectors of the Armenian economy and employs almost 45 percent of the country’s population. Armenia grows fruit (especially grapes) and vegetables. They raise livestock. There are small deposits of gold, copper, molybdenum, zinc, and alumina.
- Chess. Chess has been played in Armenia since the Early Middle Ages. In the 1960s Soviet Armenian grandmaster Tigran Petrosian became the World Chess Champion. Among countries, Armenia has one of the most chess grandmasters per capita. The Armenian men's chess team won the 1999 European Team Championship, the 2011 World Team Championship and the Chess Olympiad in 2006, 2008, and 2012. The women's team won the 2003 European Championship. As of December 2013, Armenia ranks sixth in the world. Chess lessons have been made part of the curriculum in every public school in Armenia, making it the first country in the world to make chess mandatory in schools.
- Language. Armenian is an Indo-European language with about 6.7 million speakers mainly in Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh, a de facto, though unrecognised, independent republic in the Nagorno-Karabakh region of the South Caucasus. There are also Armenian speakers in many other countries, including Russia, Georgia, Ukraine, Turkey, Iran, Cyprus, Poland and Romania.
- Government. The Armenian government's stated aim is to build a Western-style parliamentary democracy as the basis of its form of government. According to the Constitution of Armenia, the President is the head of government and of a multi-party system.
- Music. Armenian music is a mix of folk music, light pop, and Christian music. Instruments like the duduk, the dhol, the zurna, and the kanun are commonly found in Armenian folk music. One of the oldest types of Armenian music is the Armenian chant which is the most common kind of religious music in Armenia. Many of these chants are ancient in origin, extending to pre-Christian times, Armenian classical music composer Aram Khatchaturian became internationally well known for his music, including the Sabre Dance for the ballet Gayane.
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