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{{Other uses}}{{pp-semi-indef|small=yes}}{{pp-move-indef}}{{short description|Earth's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the Eastern and Northern Hemispheres}}{{Use dmy dates|date=November 2018}}

 (List of continents by area>1st)NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY (U.S.) >TITLE=NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC FAMILY REFERENCE ATLAS OF THE WORLD YEAR=2006, 264, Asia}} ({{UN_PopulationList of continents by population>1st){{UN_Population|ref}}|density = 100/km2 (260/sq mi)List of continents by GDP (nominal)>1st)|GDP_PPP = $65.44 trillion (2019; 1st)List of continents by GDP (nominal)#GDP per capita (nominal) by continents>5th)IMF (WEO OCTOBER 2019 EDITION) GDP NOMINAL PER CAPITA – INTERNATIONAL DOLLAR>URL=HTTPS://WWW.IMF.ORG/EXTERNAL/DATAMAPPER/DATASETS/WEO/1, Asian people>Asian|countries = 49 UN members, 1 UN observer, 5 other states|list_countries = List of sovereign states and dependent territories in Asia|dependencies ={{Collapsible list| titlestyle = background:transparent;text-align:left;font-weight:normal;| list_style = text-align:left;Akrotiri and Dhekelia}} British Indian Ocean Territory}} Christmas Island}} Cocos (Keeling) Islands}} Hong Kong}} Macau}}}}|unrecognized ={{Collapsible list| titlestyle = background:transparent;text-align:left;font-weight:normal;| list_style = text-align:left;Abkhazia}}Artsakh}}South Ossetia}}Taiwan}}}}Languages of Asia>List of languages|time = UTC+2 to UTC+12|internet = .asia {{hlist| list_style = text-align:left;|Tokyo|Kuala Lumpur|Jakarta|Delhi|Karachi|Seoul|Shanghai|Manila|Mumbai|Beijing|Guangzhou|Osaka|Dhaka|Bangkok|Bangalore|Chittagong|Tehran|Dubai|Ho Chi Minh City|Singapore}}|m49 = 142 – Asia001 – WorldExcludes North Asia}}Asia ({{IPAc-en|ˈ|eɪ|Ê’|É™|,_|ˈ|eɪ|ʃ|É™|audio=En-us-Asia.ogg}}) is Earth's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the Eastern and Northern Hemispheres. It shares the continental landmass of Eurasia with the continent of Europe and the continental landmass of Afro-Eurasia with both Europe and Africa. Asia covers an area of {{convert|44,579,000|km2|sqmi}}, about 30% of Earth's total land area and 8.7% of the Earth's total surface area. The continent, which has long been home to the majority of the human population,WEB, The World at Six Billion,weblink UN Population Division,weblink" title="">weblink 5 March 2016, live, , weblink" title="">Table 2 was the site of many of the first civilizations. Asia is notable for not only its overall large size and population, but also dense and large settlements, as well as vast barely populated regions. Its 4.5 billion people ({{as of|2019|06|lc=yes}}) constitute roughly 60% of the world's population.WEB,weblink Population of Asia. 2019 demographics: density, ratios, growth rate, clock, rate of men to women.,, 2 June 2019, In general terms, Asia is bounded on the east by the Pacific Ocean, on the south by the Indian Ocean, and on the north by the Arctic Ocean. The border of Asia with Europe is a historical and cultural construct, as there is no clear physical and geographical separation between them. It is somewhat arbitrary and has moved since its first conception in classical antiquity. The division of Eurasia into two continents reflects East–West cultural, linguistic, and ethnic differences, some of which vary on a spectrum rather than with a sharp dividing line. The most commonly accepted boundaries place Asia to the east of the Suez Canal separating it from Africa; and to the east of the Turkish Straits, the Ural Mountains and Ural River, and to the south of the Caucasus Mountains and the Caspian and Black Seas, separating it from Europe.BOOK, National Geographic Atlas of the World, 7th, 1999, Washington, D.C., National Geographic Society, National Geographic, 978-0-7922-7528-2, "Europe" (pp. 68–69); "Asia" (pp. 90–91): "A commonly accepted division between Asia and Europe is formed by the Ural Mountains, Ural River, Caspian Sea, Caucasus Mountains, and the Black Sea with its outlets, the Bosporus and Dardanelles."China and India alternated in being the largest economies in the world from 1 to 1800 CE. China was a major economic power and attracted many to the east,WEB, M. D., Nalapat,weblink Ensuring China's 'Peaceful Rise', January 22, 2016, dead,weblink" title="">weblink 10 January 2010, BOOK,weblink Dahlman, Carl J; Aubert, Jean-Eric. China and the Knowledge Economy: Seizing the 21st Century. WBI Development Studies. World Bank Publications. Accessed January 22, 2016,, 9 November 2017, live,weblink" title="">weblink 4 March 2008, 978-0-8213-5005-8, World Bank Publications, 2000, WEB,weblink The Real Great Leap Forward, 30 September 2004, The Economist, live,weblink" title="">weblink 27 December 2016, and for many the legendary wealth and prosperity of the ancient culture of India personified Asia,weblink {{webarchive|url=|date=20 November 2008}} attracting European commerce, exploration and colonialism. The accidental discovery of a trans-Atlantic route from Europe to America by Columbus while in search for a route to India demonstrates this deep fascination. The Silk Road became the main east–west trading route in the Asian hinterlands while the Straits of Malacca stood as a major sea route. Asia has exhibited economic dynamism (particularly East Asia) as well as robust population growth during the 20th century, but overall population growth has since fallen.JOURNAL,weblink Like herrings in a barrel, The Economist, 23 December 1999, Millennium issue: Population, live,weblink" title="">weblink 4 January 2010, . Asia was the birthplace of most of the world's mainstream religions including Hinduism, Zoroastrianism, Judaism, Jainism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, Christianity, Islam, Sikhism, as well as many other religions.Given its size and diversity, the concept of Asia—a name dating back to classical antiquity—may actually have more to do with human geography than physical geography.{{citation needed|date=September 2018}} Asia varies greatly across and within its regions with regard to ethnic groups, cultures, environments, economics, historical ties and government systems. It also has a mix of many different climates ranging from the equatorial south via the hot desert in the Middle East, temperate areas in the east and the continental centre to vast subarctic and polar areas in Siberia.

Definition and boundaries

{{details|topic=Asian borders|Geography of Asia#Boundary|Boundaries between continents|List of transcontinental countries#Asia and Europe|Copenhagen criteria}}

Asia–Africa boundary

The boundary between Asia and Africa is the Red Sea, the Gulf of Suez, and the Suez Canal.{{citation needed|date=November 2017}} This makes Egypt a transcontinental country, with the Sinai peninsula in Asia and the remainder of the country in Africa.

Asia–Europe boundary

File:Palazzo_Ferreria_statue.jpeg|thumb|right|Statue representing Asia at Palazzo Ferreria, in Valletta, MaltaMaltaThe border between Asia and Europe was historically defined by European academics.MAGAZINE,weblink Geography in the News: Eurasia's Boundaries, Neal Lineback, National Geographic, 9 July 2013, 9 June 2016, dead,weblink" title="">weblink 8 May 2016, The Don River became unsatisfactory to northern Europeans when Peter the Great, king of the Tsardom of Russia, defeating rival claims of Sweden and the Ottoman Empire to the eastern lands, and armed resistance by the tribes of Siberia, synthesized a new Russian Empire extending to the Ural Mountains and beyond, founded in 1721. The major geographical theorist of the empire was actually a former Swedish prisoner-of-war, taken at the Battle of Poltava in 1709 and assigned to Tobolsk, where he associated with Peter's Siberian official, Vasily Tatishchev, and was allowed freedom to conduct geographical and anthropological studies in preparation for a future book.{{Citation needed|date=October 2011}}In Sweden, five years after Peter's death, in 1730 Philip Johan von Strahlenberg published a new atlas proposing the Ural Mountains as the border of Asia. Tatishchev announced that he had proposed the idea to von Strahlenberg. The latter had suggested the Emba River as the lower boundary. Over the next century various proposals were made until the Ural River prevailed in the mid-19th century. The border had been moved perforce from the Black Sea to the Caspian Sea into which the Ural River projects.{{harvnb|Lewis|Wigen|1997|pp=27–28}} The border between the Black Sea and the Caspian is usually placed along the crest of the Caucasus Mountains, although it is sometimes placed further north.

Asia–Oceania boundary

The border between Asia and the region of Oceania is usually placed somewhere in the Malay Archipelago. The Maluku Islands in Indonesia are often considered to lie on the border of southeast Asia, with New Guinea, to the east of the islands, being wholly part of Oceania. The terms Southeast Asia and Oceania, devised in the 19th century, have had several vastly different geographic meanings since their inception. The chief factor in determining which islands of the Malay Archipelago are Asian has been the location of the colonial possessions of the various empires there (not all European). Lewis and Wigen assert, "The narrowing of 'Southeast Asia' to its present boundaries was thus a gradual process."{{harvnb | Lewis | Wigen | 1997 | pp=170–173}}

Ongoing definition

File:Afro-Eurasia (orthographic projection).svg|thumb|left|Afro-EurasiaAfro-EurasiaGeographical Asia is a cultural artifact of European conceptions of the world, beginning with the Ancient Greeks, being imposed onto other cultures, an imprecise concept causing endemic contention about what it means. Asia does not exactly correspond to the cultural borders of its various types of constituents.{{harvnb|Lewis|Wigen|1997|pp=7–9}}From the time of Herodotus a minority of geographers have rejected the three-continent system (Europe, Africa, Asia) on the grounds that there is no substantial physical separation between them.WEB, Asia,weblink AccessScience, McGraw-Hill, 26 July 2011, 27 November 2011,weblink" title="">weblink dead, For example, Sir Barry Cunliffe, the emeritus professor of European archeology at Oxford, argues that Europe has been geographically and culturally merely "the western excrescence of the continent of Asia".JOURNAL,weblink Geography Is Destiny, Benjamin, Schwartz, The Atlantic, December 2008, live,weblink" title="">weblink 30 September 2009, Geographically, Asia is the major eastern constituent of the continent of Eurasia with Europe being a northwestern peninsula of the landmass. Asia, Europe and Africa make up a single continuous landmass—Afro-Eurasia (except for the Suez Canal)—and share a common continental shelf. Almost all of Europe and the better part of Asia sit atop the Eurasian Plate, adjoined on the south by the Arabian and Indian Plate and with the easternmost part of Siberia (east of the Chersky Range) on the North American Plate.{{Clear}}


(File:Gulf5..JPG|thumb|upright=1.25|Ptolemy's Asia)The idea of a place called "Asia" was originally a concept of Greek civilization,Reid, T.R. (Confucius Lives Next Door: What living in the East teaches us about living in the west) Vintage Books(1999). though this might not correspond to the entire continent currently known by that name. The English word comes from Latin literature, where it has the same form, "Asia". Whether "Asia" in other languages comes from Latin of the Roman Empire is much less certain, and the ultimate source of the Latin word is uncertain, though several theories have been published. One of the first classical writers to use Asia as a name of the whole continent was Pliny.WEB,weblink Asia – Origin and meaning of Asia by Online Etymology Dictionary,, 9 November 2017, live,weblink" title="">weblink 25 May 2017, This metonymical change in meaning is common and can be observed in some other geographical names, such as Scandinavia (from Scania).

Bronze Age

Before Greek poetry, the Aegean Sea area was in a Greek Dark Age, at the beginning of which syllabic writing was lost and alphabetic writing had not begun. Prior to then in the Bronze Age the records of the Assyrian Empire, the Hittite Empire and the various Mycenaean states of Greece mention a region undoubtedly Asia, certainly in Anatolia, including if not identical to Lydia. These records are administrative and do not include poetry.The Mycenaean states were destroyed about 1200 BCE by unknown agents although one school of thought assigns the Dorian invasion to this time. The burning of the palaces baked clay diurnal administrative records written in a Greek syllabic script called Linear B, deciphered by a number of interested parties, most notably by a young World War II cryptographer, Michael Ventris, subsequently assisted by the scholar, John Chadwick. A major cache discovered by Carl Blegen at the site of ancient Pylos included hundreds of male and female names formed by different methods.Some of these are of women held in servitude (as study of the society implied by the content reveals). They were used in trades, such as cloth-making, and usually came with children. The epithet lawiaiai, "captives", associated with some of them identifies their origin. Some are ethnic names. One in particular, aswiai, identifies "women of Asia".{{harvnb|Ventris|Chadwick|1973|p=536}}. Perhaps they were captured in Asia, but some others, Milatiai, appear to have been of Miletus, a Greek colony, which would not have been raided for slaves by Greeks. Chadwick suggests that the names record the locations where these foreign women were purchased.{{harvnb|Ventris|Chadwick|1973|p=410}} The name is also in the singular, Aswia, which refers both to the name of a country and to a female of it. There is a masculine form, aswios. This Aswia appears to have been a remnant of a region known to the Hittites as Assuwa, centered on Lydia, or "Roman Asia". This name, Assuwa, has been suggested as the origin for the name of the continent "Asia".Bossert, Helmut T., Asia, Istanbul, 1946. The Assuwa league was a confederation of states in western Anatolia, defeated by the Hittites under Tudhaliya I around 1400 BCE.Alternatively, the etymology of the term may be from the Akkadian word (w)aṣû(m), which means 'to go outside' or 'to ascend', referring to the direction of the sun at sunrise in the Middle East and also likely connected with the Phoenician word asa meaning east. This may be contrasted to a similar etymology proposed for Europe, as being from Akkadian erēbu(m) 'to enter' or 'set' (of the sun).T.R. Reid supports this alternative etymology, noting that the ancient Greek name must have derived from asu, meaning 'east' in Assyrian (ereb for Europe meaning 'west'). The ideas of Occidental (form Latin Occidens 'setting') and Oriental (from Latin Oriens for 'rising') are also European invention, synonymous with Western and Eastern. Reid further emphasizes that it explains the Western point of view of placing all the peoples and cultures of Asia into a single classification, almost as if there were a need for setting the distinction between Western and Eastern civilizations on the Eurasian continent. Kazuo Ogura and Tenshin Okakura are two outspoken Japanese figures on the subject.

Classical antiquity

File:Roman Empire - Asia (125 AD).svg|thumb|The province of Asia highlighted (in red) within the Roman Empire.]]Latin Asia and Greek Ἀσία appear to be the same word. Roman authors translated Ἀσία as Asia. The Romans named a province Asia, located in western Anatolia (in modern-day Turkey). There was an Asia Minor and an Asia Major located in modern-day Iraq. As the earliest evidence of the name is Greek, it is likely circumstantially that Asia came from Ἀσία, but ancient transitions, due to the lack of literary contexts, are difficult to catch in the act. The most likely vehicles were the ancient geographers and historians, such as Herodotus, who were all Greek. Ancient Greek certainly evidences early and rich uses of the name.ENCYCLOPEDIA,weblink Ἀσία, Henry George Liddell, Robert Scott, Henry Stuart Jones, Roderick McKenzie, A Greek-English Lexicon, 2007, Medford, Perseus Digital Library, Tufts University, 1940, live,weblink" title="">weblink 27 April 2011, The first continental use of Asia is attributed to Herodotus (about 440 BCE), not because he innovated it, but because his Histories are the earliest surviving prose to describe it in any detail. He defines it carefully,Book IV, Articles 37–40. mentioning the previous geographers whom he had read, but whose works are now missing. By it he means Anatolia and the Persian Empire, in contrast to Greece and Egypt.Herodotus comments that he is puzzled as to why three women's names were "given to a tract which is in reality one" (Europa, Asia, and Libya, referring to Africa), stating that most Greeks assumed that Asia was named after the wife of Prometheus (i.e. Hesione), but that the Lydians say it was named after Asies, son of Cotys, who passed the name on to a tribe at Sardis.Book IV, Article 45. In Greek mythology, "Asia" (Ἀσία) or "Asie" (Ἀσίη) was the name of a "Nymph or Titan goddess of Lydia".WEB,weblink Asie, Encyclopedia: Greek Gods, Spirits, Monsters, Theoi Greek Mythology, Exploring Mythology in Classical Literature and Art, 2000–2011, live,weblink" title="">weblink 4 June 2010, In ancient Greek religion, places were under the care of female divinities, parallel to guardian angels. The poets detailed their doings and generations in allegoric language salted with entertaining stories, which subsequently playwrights transformed into classical Greek drama and became "Greek mythology". For example, Hesiod mentions the daughters of Tethys and Ocean, among whom are a "holy company", "who with the Lord Apollo and the Rivers have youths in their keeping".Theogony, Line 345 ff. Many of these are geographic: Doris, Rhodea, Europa, Asia. Hesiod explains:Theogony, Line 364ff.The Iliad (attributed by the ancient Greeks to Homer) mentions two Phrygians (the tribe that replaced the Luvians in Lydia) in the Trojan War named Asios (an adjective meaning "Asian");Μ95, Π717. and also a marsh or lowland containing a marsh in Lydia as .Β461. According to many Muslims, the term came from Ancient Egypt's Queen Asiya, the adoptive mother of Moses.Muhmmad al-Bukhari. Sahih Al-Bukhari Translated into English Prose by Muhammad Muhsin Khan. Hadith 7.329


File:Silkroutes.jpg|thumb|upright=1.25|The Silk RoadSilk RoadFile:Mongol dominions1.jpg|thumb|right|upright=1.25|The Mongol Empire at its greatest extent. The gray area is the later Timurid EmpireTimurid EmpireThe history of Asia can be seen as the distinct histories of several peripheral coastal regions: East Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia and the Middle East, linked by the interior mass of the Central Asian steppes.The coastal periphery was home to some of the world's earliest known civilizations, each of them developing around fertile river valleys. The civilizations in Mesopotamia, the Indus Valley and the Yellow River shared many similarities. These civilizations may well have exchanged technologies and ideas such as mathematics and the wheel. Other innovations, such as writing, seem to have been developed individually in each area. Cities, states and empires developed in these lowlands.The central steppe region had long been inhabited by horse-mounted nomads who could reach all areas of Asia from the steppes. The earliest postulated expansion out of the steppe is that of the Indo-Europeans, who spread their languages into the Middle East, South Asia, and the borders of China, where the Tocharians resided. The northernmost part of Asia, including much of Siberia, was largely inaccessible to the steppe nomads, owing to the dense forests, climate and tundra. These areas remained very sparsely populated.The center and the peripheries were mostly kept separated by mountains and deserts. The Caucasus and Himalaya mountains and the Karakum and Gobi deserts formed barriers that the steppe horsemen could cross only with difficulty. While the urban city dwellers were more advanced technologically and socially, in many cases they could do little in a military aspect to defend against the mounted hordes of the steppe. However, the lowlands did not have enough open grasslands to support a large horsebound force; for this and other reasons, the nomads who conquered states in China, India, and the Middle East often found themselves adapting to the local, more affluent societies.The Islamic Caliphate's defeats of the Byzantine and Persian empires led to West Asia and southern parts of Central Asia and western parts of South Asia under its control during its conquests of the 7th century. The Mongol Empire conquered a large part of Asia in the 13th century, an area extending from China to Europe. Before the Mongol invasion, Song dynasty reportedly had approximately 120 million citizens; the 1300 census which followed the invasion reported roughly 60 million people.Ping-ti Ho. "An Estimate of the Total Population of Sung-Chin China", in Études Song, Series 1, No 1, (1970). pp. 33–53.The Black Death, one of the most devastating pandemics in human history, is thought to have originated in the arid plains of central Asia, where it then travelled along the Silk Road.WEB,weblink History – Black Death, BBC, 17 February 2011, live,weblink" title="">weblink 5 June 2012, The Russian Empire began to expand into Asia from the 17th century, and would eventually take control of all of Siberia and most of Central Asia by the end of the 19th century. The Ottoman Empire controlled Anatolia, most of the Middle East, North Africa and the Balkans from the mid 16th century onwards. In the 17th century, the Manchu conquered China and established the Qing dynasty. The Islamic Mughal Empire and the Hindu Maratha Empire controlled much of India in the 16th and 18th centuries respectively.BOOK, Sen, Sailendra Nath, An Advanced History of Modern India, 11,weblink live,weblink 11 October 2017, 978-0-230-32885-3, 2010, The Empire of Japan controlled most of East Asia and much of Southeast Asia, New Guinea and the Pacific islands until the end of World War II.File:A Map of the Countries between Constantinople and Calcutta- Including Turkey in Asia, Persia, Afghanistan and Turkestan WDL11753.png|Map of western, southern, and central Asia in 1885WEB,weblink A Map of the Countries between Constantinople and Calcutta: Including Turkey in Asia, Persia, Afghanistan and Turkestan,, 9 November 2017, live,weblink 17 October 2017, 1885, File:Modern Asia (1796).tif|The map of Asia in 1796, which also included the continent of Australia (then known as New Holland).File:Asien Bd1.jpg|1890 map of Asia

Geography and climate

{{see also|:Category:Biota of Asia}}File:Himalayas.jpg|thumb|right|The Himalayan range is home to some of the planet's highest peaks.]]Asia is the largest continent on Earth. It covers 9% of the Earth's total surface area (or 30% of its land area), and has the longest coastline, at {{convert|62800|km|mi|0}}. Asia is generally defined as comprising the eastern four-fifths of Eurasia. It is located to the east of the Suez Canal and the Ural Mountains, and south of the Caucasus Mountains (or the Kuma–Manych Depression) and the Caspian and Black Seas.ENCYCLOPEDIA, Asia,weblink Encyclopædia Britannica Online, 2006, Chicago, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc, live,weblink" title="">weblink 18 November 2008, It is bounded on the east by the Pacific Ocean, on the south by the Indian Ocean and on the north by the Arctic Ocean. Asia is subdivided into 48 countries, three of them (Russia, Kazakhstan and Turkey) having part of their land in Europe.Asia has extremely diverse climates and geographic features. Climates range from arctic and subarctic in Siberia to tropical in southern India and Southeast Asia. It is moist across southeast sections, and dry across much of the interior. Some of the largest daily temperature ranges on Earth occur in western sections of Asia. The monsoon circulation dominates across southern and eastern sections, due to the presence of the Himalayas forcing the formation of a thermal low which draws in moisture during the summer. Southwestern sections of the continent are hot. Siberia is one of the coldest places in the Northern Hemisphere, and can act as a source of arctic air masses for North America. The most active place on Earth for tropical cyclone activity lies northeast of the Philippines and south of Japan. The Gobi Desert is in Mongolia and the Arabian Desert stretches across much of the Middle East. The Yangtze River in China is the longest river in the continent. The Himalayas between Nepal and China is the tallest mountain range in the world. Tropical rainforests stretch across much of southern Asia and coniferous and deciduous forests lie farther north.File:Paysan soignant ses boeufs (Kerala).jpg|Kerala backwatersFile:Naadam rider 2.jpg|Mongolian steppeFile:1 li jiang guilin yangshuo 2011.jpg|South China KarstFile:Akkem Valley 2011.jpg|Altai MountainsFile:Hunza Valley from Eagle Point.jpg|Hunza ValleyFile:Madoogali reef.jpg|Maldivian Coral reef

Main regions

Climate change

A survey carried out in 2010 by global risk analysis farm Maplecroft identified 16 countries that are extremely vulnerable to climate change. Each nation's vulnerability was calculated using 42 socio, economic and environmental indicators, which identified the likely climate change impacts during the next 30 years. The Asian countries of Bangladesh, India, Vietnam, Thailand, Pakistan and Sri Lanka were among the 16 countries facing extreme risk from climate change. Some shifts are already occurring. For example, in tropical parts of India with a semi-arid climate, the temperature increased by 0.4 Â°C between 1901 and 2003.A 2013 study by the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) aimed to find science-based, pro-poor approaches and techniques that would enable Asia's agricultural systems to cope with climate change, while benefitting poor and vulnerable farmers. The study's recommendations ranged from improving the use of climate information in local planning and strengthening weather-based agro-advisory services, to stimulating diversification of rural household incomes and providing incentives to farmers to adopt natural resource conservation measures to enhance forest cover, replenish groundwater and use renewable energy.Vulnerability to Climate Change: Adaptation Strategies and layers of Resilience {{webarchive|url= |date=26 February 2014 }}, ICRISAT, Policy Brief No. 23, February 2013


File:1 singapore city skyline dusk panorama 2011.jpg|thumb|right|upright=1.25|Singapore has one of the busiest ports in the world and is the world's fourth largest foreign exchange trading center.]]{| class="wikitable" style="text-align: right; float:right; clear:right; border:1px solid #aaa; margin:10px" style="background:#dbdbdb;"! Rank! Country! GDP (PPP, Peak Year)millions of USD! Peak Year{{flag| 2019{{flag| 2019{{flag| 2019{{flag| 2019{{flag| 2019{{flag| 2018{{flag| 2019{{nowrapSaudi Arabia}}}} 1,924,253 2019{{flag| 2017{{flag| 2019{| class="wikitable" style="text-align: right; float:right; clear:right; border:1px solid #aaa; margin:10px" style="background:#dbdbdb;"! Rank! Country! GDP (nominal, Peak Year)millions of USD! Peak Year{{flag| 2019{{flag| 2012{{flag| 2019{{flag| 2013{{flag| 2019{{flag| 2019{{flag| 2013{{nowrapSaudi Arabia}}}} 782,483 2018{{flag| 2019{{flag| 2011Asia has the largest continental economy by both GDP Nominal and PPP in the world, and is the fastest growing economic region.NEWS, World Economic Outlook (October 2018) – GDP, current prices,weblink, {{as of|2018}}, the largest economies in Asia are China, Japan, India, Russia, South Korea, Indonesia and Turkey based on GDP in both nominal and PPP.WEB,weblink$*&decimals=*--*, Largest_Economies_in_Asia,, 9 November 2017, Based on Global Office Locations 2011, Asia dominated the office locations with 4 of the top 5 being in Asia: Hong Kong, Singapore, Tokyo and Seoul. Around 68 percent of international firms have office in Hong Kong.WEB,weblink Hong Kong, Singapore, Tokyo World's Top Office Destinations, CFO innovation ASIA, dead,weblink" title="">weblink 7 August 2011, 21 July 2011, In the late 1990s and early 2000s, the economies of ChinaJOURNAL, 916768, Five Years of China WTO Membership: EU and US Perspectives About China's Compliance With Transparency Commitments and the Transitional Review Mechanism, 4 August 2006, Farah, Paolo Davide, and India have been growing rapidly, both with an average annual growth rate of more than 8%. Other recent very-high-growth nations in Asia include Israel, Malaysia, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Mongolia, Uzbekistan and the Philippines, and mineral-rich nations such as Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Iran, Brunei, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Oman.According to economic historian Angus Maddison in his book The World Economy: A Millennial Perspective, India had the world's largest economy during 0 BCE and 1000 BCE.The World Economy: Historical Statistics, Angus MaddisonWEB,weblink Archived copy, 21 May 2013, dead,weblink" title="">weblink 22 July 2013, China was the largest and most advanced economy on earth for much of recorded history,WEB,weblink Ensuring China's "Peaceful Rise", Professor M.D. Nalapat,, 11 September 2001, 1 June 2010, dead,weblink" title="">weblink 10 January 2010, BOOK,weblink Dahlman, Carl J; Aubert, Jean-Eric. China and the Knowledge Economy: Seizing the 21st century. WBI Development Studies. World Bank Publications. Accessed 30 January 2008,, 1 June 2010, live,weblink" title="">weblink 4 March 2008, 978-0-8213-5005-8, 2000, NEWS,weblink The Real Great Leap Forward, The Economist, 30 September 2004, 1 June 2010, live,weblink" title="">weblink 27 December 2016, until the British Empire (excluding India) overtook it in the mid-19th century. For several decades in the late twentieth century Japan was the largest economy in Asia and second-largest of any single nation in the world, after surpassing the Soviet Union (measured in net material product) in 1986 and Germany in 1968. (NB: A number of supernational economies are larger, such as the European Union (EU), the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) or APEC). This ended in 2010 when China overtook Japan to become the world's second largest economy.In the late 1980s and early 1990s, Japan's GDP was almost as large (current exchange rate method) as that of the rest of Asia combined.BOOK, The Armed Forces: Instrument of Peace, Strength, Development and Prosperity, Fagoyinbo B, Joseph, AuthorHouse UK, 2013, 978-1-4772-1844-0, 58, In 1995, Japan's economy nearly equaled that of the US as the largest economy in the world for a day, after the Japanese currency reached a record high of 79 yen/US$. Economic growth in Asia since World War II to the 1990s had been concentrated in Japan as well as the four regions of South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Singapore located in the Pacific Rim, known as the Asian tigers, which have now all received developed country status, having the highest GDP per capita in Asia.WEB,weblink Rise of Japan and 4 Asian Tigers from,, 1 June 2010,weblink" title="">weblink 22 April 2010, dead, File:Mumbai 03-2016 10 skyline of Lotus Colony.jpg|thumb|upright=1.25|Mumbai is one of the most populous cities on the continent. The city is an infrastructure and tourism hub, and plays a crucial role in the Economy of IndiaEconomy of IndiaIt is forecasted that India will overtake Japan in terms of nominal GDP by 2020.WEB,weblink Commonwealth Business Council-Asia, 12 April 2007,weblink" title="">weblink 28 July 2007, dead, By 2027, according to Goldman Sachs, China will have the largest economy in the world. Several trade blocs exist, with the most developed being the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.Asia is the largest continent in the world by a considerable margin, and it is rich in natural resources, such as petroleum, forests, fish, water, rice, copper and silver. Manufacturing in Asia has traditionally been strongest in East and Southeast Asia, particularly in China, Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, India, the Philippines, and Singapore. Japan and South Korea continue to dominate in the area of multinational corporations, but increasingly the PRC and India are making significant inroads. Many companies from Europe, North America, South Korea and Japan have operations in Asia's developing countries to take advantage of its abundant supply of cheap labour and relatively developed infrastructure.According to Citigroup 9 of 11 Global Growth Generators countries came from Asia driven by population and income growth. They are Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Mongolia, Philippines, Sri Lanka and Vietnam.WEB,weblink Philippine potential cited,, 24 February 2011, 1 March 2011, dead,weblink 24 April 2011, Asia has three main financial centers: Hong Kong, Tokyo and Singapore. Call centers and business process outsourcing (BPOs) are becoming major employers in India and the Philippines due to the availability of a large pool of highly skilled, English-speaking workers. The increased use of outsourcing has assisted the rise of India and the China as financial centers. Due to its large and extremely competitive information technology industry, India has become a major hub for outsourcing.In 2010, Asia had 3.3 million millionaires (people with net worth over US$1 million excluding their homes), slightly below North America with 3.4 million millionaires. Last year Asia had toppled Europe.NEWS,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink dead, 25 June 2011, Asia has more millionaires than Europe, Toronto, Citigroup in The Wealth Report 2012 stated that Asian centa-millionaire overtook North America's wealth for the first time as the world's "economic center of gravity" continued moving east. At the end of 2011, there were 18,000 Asian people mainly in Southeast Asia, China and Japan who have at least $100 million in disposable assets, while North America with 17,000 people and Western Europe with 14,000 people.NEWS,weblink Citigroup Study Shows Asian Rich Topping North American, 28 March 2012, Bloomberg, Sanat, Vallikappen, live,weblink" title="">weblink 14 January 2015,


File:Grand Palace Bangkok.jpg|thumb|right|alt=A Thai temple complex with several ornate buildings and a stupa, and a lot of visitors|Wat Phra Kaeo in the Grand PalaceGrand PalaceWith growing Regional Tourism with domination of Chinese visitors, MasterCard has released Global Destination Cities Index 2013 with 10 of 20 are dominated by Asia and Pacific Region Cities and also for the first time a city of a country from Asia (Bangkok) set in the top-ranked with 15.98 international visitors.WEB,weblink Milan and Rome named among the most widely visited cities in the world in the Mastercard Global Destination Cities Index report, 28 May 2013,, 9 November 2017, dead,weblink" title="">weblink 17 October 2017,


{{Historical populations|title = Historical populations|type = Asia|align = right"UN report 2004 data" (PDF).The figure for {{UN_Population>Year}} is provided by {{UN_Population|source}}.243000000436000000947000000140200000036340000004462676731}}File:WorldPopulation.png|thumb|right|upright=1.25|Graph showing population by continent as a percentage of world populationworld populationEast Asia had by far the strongest overall Human Development Index (HDI) improvement of any region in the world, nearly doubling average HDI attainment over the past 40 years, according to the report's analysis of health, education and income data. China, the second highest achiever in the world in terms of HDI improvement since1970, is the only country on the "Top 10 Movers" list due to income rather than health or education achievements. Its per capita income increased a stunning 21-fold over the last four decades, also lifting hundreds of millions out of income poverty. Yet it was not among the region's top performers in improving school enrollment and life expectancy.WEB,weblink 2010 Human Development Report: Asian countries lead development progress over 40 years, UNDP, 22 December 2010, live,weblink" title="">weblink 21 November 2010, Nepal, a South Asian country, emerges as one of the world's fastest movers since 1970 mainly due to health and education achievements. Its present life expectancy is 25 years longer than in the 1970s. More than four of every five children of school age in Nepal now attend primary school, compared to just one in five 40 years ago.
Hong Kong ranked highest among the countries grouped on the HDI (number 7 in the world, which is in the "very high human development" category), followed by Singapore (9), Japan (19) and South Korea (22). Afghanistan (155) ranked lowest amongst Asian countries out of the 169 countries assessed.


Asia is home to several language families and many language isolates. Most Asian countries have more than one language that is natively spoken. For instance, according to Ethnologue, more than 600 languages are spoken in Indonesia, more than 800 languages spoken in India, and more than 100 are spoken in the Philippines. China has many languages and dialects in different provinces.


{{See also|Eastern philosophy|Religion in Asia|List of Asian mythologies}}Many of the world's major religions have their origins in Asia, including the five most practiced in the world (excluding irreligion), which are Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Chinese folk religion (classified as Confucianism and Taoism), and Buddhism respectively. Asian mythology is complex and diverse. The story of the Great Flood for example, as presented to Jews in the Hebrew Bible in the narrative of Noah—and later to Christians in the Old Testament, and to Muslims in the Quran—is earliest found in Mesopotamian mythology, in the Enûma Eliš and Epic of Gilgamesh. Hindu mythology similarly tells about an avatar of Vishnu in the form of a fish who warned Manu of a terrible flood. Ancient Chinese mythology also tells of a Great Flood spanning generations, one that required the combined efforts of emperors and divinities to control.


File:Westernwall2.jpg|thumb|The Western Wall and the Dome of the Rock, JerusalemJerusalemFile:Beyt-i Haram.jpg|thumb|right|Pilgrims in the annual Hajj at the Kaabah in MeccaMeccaThe Abrahamic religions including Judaism, Christianity, Islam and Bahá'í Faith originated in West Asia.Judaism, the oldest of the Abrahamic faiths, is practiced primarily in Israel, the indigenous homeland and historical birthplace of the Hebrew nation: which today consists both of those Jews who remained in the Middle East and those who returned from diaspora in Europe, North America, and other regions;WEB,weblink The Jewish Population of the World,, 1 June 2010, live,weblink" title="">weblink 21 June 2010, though various diaspora communities persist worldwide. Jews are the predominant ethnic group in Israel (75.6%) numbering at about 6.1 million,NEWS, Yoram Ettinger, Defying demographic projections,weblink 29 October 2013, Israel Hayom, 5 April 2013, live,weblink" title="">weblink 29 October 2013, although the levels of adherence to Jewish religion vary. Outside of Israel there are small ancient Jewish communities in Turkey (17,400),WEB,weblink Turkey Virtual Jewish History Tour | Jewish Virtual Library,, 15 December 2014, live,weblink" title="">weblink 11 October 2014, Azerbaijan (9,100),WEB,weblink Ethnic composition of Azerbaijan 2009,, 7 April 1971, 22 December 2012, live,weblink" title="">weblink 7 February 2012, Iran (8,756),NEWS,weblink Jewish woman brutally murdered in Iran over property dispute, The Times of Israel, 28 November 2012, 16 August 2014, A government census published earlier this year indicated there were a mere 8,756 Jews left in Iran, live,weblink" title="">weblink 19 August 2014, See Persian Jews#Iran India (5,000) and Uzbekistan (4,000),World Jewish Population 2007 {{webarchive|url= |date=26 March 2009 }}, American Jewish Yearbook, vol. 107 (2007), p. 592. among many other places. In total, there are 14.4–17.5 million (2016, est.)WEB,weblink World Jewish Population 2016 (DellaPergola, AJYB) {{!, Berman Jewish DataBank||accessdate=24 March 2018}} Jews alive in the world today, making them one of the smallest Asian minorities, at roughly 0.3 to 0.4 percent of the total population of the continent.Christianity is a widespread religion in Asia with more than 286 million adherents according to Pew Research Center in 2010,WEB,weblink Christians, 18 December 2012, Pew Research Center's Religion & Public Life Project, 13 March 2015, live,weblink" title="">weblink 10 March 2015, and nearly 364 million according to Britannica Book of the Year 2014.BOOK,weblink Britannica Book of the Year 2014, 13 March 2015, live,weblink 29 April 2016, 978-1-62513-171-3, Encyclopaedia Britannica, Inc, 2014, Constituting around 12.6% of the total population of Asia. In the Philippines and East Timor, Roman Catholicism is the predominant religion; it was introduced by the Spaniards and the Portuguese, respectively. In Armenia, Georgia and Asian Russia, Eastern Orthodoxy is the predominant religion. In the Middle East, such as in the Levant, Syriac Christianity (Church of the East) and Oriental Orthodoxy are prevalent minority denominations, which are both Eastern Christian sects mainly adhered to Assyrian people or Syriac Christians. Saint Thomas Christians in India trace their origins to the evangelistic activity of Thomas the Apostle in the 1st century.The Encyclopedia of Christianity, Volume 5 by Erwin Fahlbusch. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing. 2008, p. 285. {{ISBN|978-0-8028-2417-2}}.Islam, which originated in the Hejaz located in modern-day Saudi Arabia, is the second largest and most widely-spread religion in Asia with at least 1 billion Muslims constituting around 23.8% of the total population of Asia.WEB,weblink Region: Asia-Pacific, 27 January 2011,, 9 November 2017, live,weblink" title="">weblink 10 October 2017, With 12.7% of the world Muslim population, the country currently with the largest Muslim population in the world is Indonesia, followed by Pakistan (11.5%), India (10%), Bangladesh, Iran and Turkey. Mecca, Medina and Jerusalem are the three holiest cities for Islam in all the world. The Hajj and Umrah attract large numbers of Muslim devotees from all over the world to Mecca and Medina. Iran is the largest Shi'a country.The Bahá'í Faith originated in Asia, in Iran (Persia), and spread from there to the Ottoman Empire, Central Asia, India, and Burma during the lifetime of Bahá'u'lláh. Since the middle of the 20th century, growth has particularly occurred in other Asian countries, because Bahá'í activities in many Muslim countries has been severely suppressed by authorities. Lotus Temple is a big Baha'i Temple in India.

Indian and East Asian religions

File:Akshardham Lotus.jpg|thumb|right|The Swaminarayan Akshardham Temple in Delhi, according to the Guinness World Records is the World's Largest Comprehensive Hindu TempleNEWS, Preeti, Jha,weblink Guinness comes to east Delhi: Akshardham world's largest Hindu temple, 26 December 2007, The Indian Express, ExpressIndia.comThe Indian Express, ExpressIndia.comAlmost all Asian religions have philosophical character and Asian philosophical traditions cover a large spectrum of philosophical thoughts and writings. Indian philosophy includes Hindu philosophy and Buddhist philosophy. They include elements of nonmaterial pursuits, whereas another school of thought from India, Cārvāka, preached the enjoyment of the material world. The religions of Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism originated in India, South Asia. In East Asia, particularly in China and Japan, Confucianism, Taoism and Zen Buddhism took shape.{{as of|2012}}, Hinduism has around 1.1 billion adherents. The faith represents around 25% of Asia's population and is the largest religion in Asia. However, it is mostly concentrated in South Asia. Over 80% of the populations of both India and Nepal adhere to Hinduism, alongside significant communities in Bangladesh, Pakistan, Bhutan, Sri Lanka and Bali, Indonesia. Many overseas Indians in countries such as Burma, Singapore and Malaysia also adhere to Hinduism.File:Statue_of_Unity,_as_dedicated_on_October_31,_2018_(cropped).jpg|thumb|upright|Statue of Unity located in Gujarat, India is the World's tallest statue.]]Buddhism has a great following in mainland Southeast Asia and East Asia. Buddhism is the religion of the majority of the populations of Cambodia (96%),WEB,weblink The World Factbook,, 20 December 2010,weblink 29 December 2010, live, Thailand (95%),WEB,weblink CIA – The World Factbook,, 20 December 2010,weblink 29 December 2010, live, Burma (80–89%),WEB,weblink The World Factbook,, 20 December 2010,weblink 29 December 2010, dead, Japan (36–96%),WEB,weblink The World Factbook,, 20 December 2010,weblink 28 December 2010, live, Bhutan (75–84%),WEB,weblink The World Factbook,, 20 December 2010,weblink 28 December 2010, live, Sri Lanka (70%),WEB,weblink The Census of Population and Housing of Sri Lanka-2011, Department of Census and Statistics, 29 July 2013, live,weblink" title="">weblink 24 July 2013, Laos (60–67%)WEB,weblink The World Factbook,, 20 December 2010,weblink 29 December 2010, live, and Mongolia (53–93%).WEB,weblink The World Factbook,, 20 December 2010,weblink 29 December 2010, live, Large Buddhist populations also exist in Singapore (33–51%),WEB,weblink The World Factbook,, 20 December 2010,weblink 28 December 2010, live, Taiwan (35–93%),WEB,weblink The World Factbook,, 20 December 2010,weblink 29 December 2010, live, WEB, China (includes Taiwan only): International Religious Freedom Report 2005,weblink US Department of State: Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, 8 November 2005, 24 January 2008, WEB, China (includes Taiwan only): International Religious Freedom Report 2006,weblink US Department of State: Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, 15 September 2006, 24 February 2008, WEB, China (includes Taiwan only): International Religious Freedom Report 2007,weblink US Department of State: Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, 15 September 2006, 24 February 2008, South Korea (23–50%),WEB,weblink CThe World Factbook,, 20 December 2010,weblink 28 December 2010, dead, Malaysia (19–21%),WEB,weblink The World Factbook,, 20 December 2010,weblink 28 December 2010, live, Nepal (9–11%),WEB,weblink The World Factbook,, 20 December 2010,weblink 29 December 2010, live, Vietnam (10–75%),WEB,weblink The World Factbook,, 20 December 2010,weblink 28 December 2010, live, China (20–50%),WEB,weblink Chinese Han Nationality: Language, Religion, Customs,, 9 November 2017, live,weblink 17 October 2017, North Korea (2–14%),WEB,weblink Culture of North Korea – Alternative name, History and ethnic relations, Countries and Their Cultures, Advameg Inc., 4 July 2009, live,weblink" title="">weblink 5 August 2009, WEB,weblink The World Factbook,, 9 November 2017, live,weblink 3 July 2015, WEB,weblink Background Note: North Korea, Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs, 2009, U.S. State Department, 4 July 2009, and small communities in India and Bangladesh. In many Chinese communities, Mahayana Buddhism is easily syncretized with Taoism, thus exact religious statistics is difficult to obtain and may be understated or overstated. The Communist-governed countries of China, Vietnam and North Korea are officially atheist, thus the number of Buddhists and other religious adherents may be under-reported.Jainism is found mainly in India and in oversea Indian communities such as the United States and Malaysia. Sikhism is found in Northern India and amongst overseas Indian communities in other parts of Asia, especially Southeast Asia. Confucianism is found predominantly in Mainland China, South Korea, Taiwan and in overseas Chinese populations. Taoism is found mainly in Mainland China, Taiwan, Malaysia and Singapore. Taoism is easily syncretized with Mahayana Buddhism for many Chinese, thus exact religious statistics is difficult to obtain and may be understated or overstated.File:Traditional wedding at Meji-jingu 72570539 f30636e2ef o.jpg|Japanese wedding at the Meiji ShrineFile:A day of devotion – Thaipusam in Singapore (4316108409).jpg|Hindu festival celebrated by Singapore's Tamil communityFile:Cross Procession in Novosibirsk 01.jpg|Orthodox cross procession in NovosibirskFile:Black Nazarene procession.jpg|Catholic procession of the Black Nazarene in ManilaFile:İstanbul 4258.jpg|Muslim men praying in Turkey

Modern conflicts

File:A refugee special train at Ambala Station during partition of India.jpg|thumb|A refugee special train in Ambala, PunjabPunjabFile:Napalm.jpg|thumb|US forces drop Napalm on suspected Viet CongViet CongFile:Wounded civilians arrive at hospital Aleppo.jpg|thumb|Wounded civilians arrive at a hospital in Aleppo during the Syrian Civil WarSyrian Civil WarFile:June9protestTreefong01.jpg|310px|thumb|Demonstrations in Hong Kong against the Extradition bill began in March 2019 and turned into continuing mass movements, drawing around 2 million protesters by June]]Some of the events pivotal in the Asia territory related to the relationship with the outside world in the post-Second World War were:


{{Expand section|More information about general cultural topics other than Nobel prizes|date=June 2011}}

Nobel prizes

File:Tagore3.jpg|thumb|upright|Indian polymath Rabindranath Tagore was awarded the Nobel Prize for LiteratureNobel Prize for LiteratureThe polymath Rabindranath Tagore, a Bengali poet, dramatist, and writer from Santiniketan, now in West Bengal, India, became in 1913 the first Asian Nobel laureate. He won his Nobel Prize in Literature for notable impact his prose works and poetic thought had on English, French, and other national literatures of Europe and the Americas. He is also the writer of the national anthems of Bangladesh and India.Other Asian writers who won Nobel Prize for literature include Yasunari Kawabata (Japan, 1968), Kenzaburō Ōe (Japan, 1994), Gao Xingjian (China, 2000), Orhan Pamuk (Turkey, 2006), and Mo Yan (China, 2012). Some may consider the American writer, Pearl S. Buck, an honorary Asian Nobel laureate, having spent considerable time in China as the daughter of missionaries, and based many of her novels, namely The Good Earth (1931) and The Mother (1933), as well as the biographies of her parents of their time in China, The Exile and Fighting Angel, all of which earned her the Literature prize in 1938.Also, Mother Teresa of India and Shirin Ebadi of Iran were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for their significant and pioneering efforts for democracy and human rights, especially for the rights of women and children. Ebadi is the first Iranian and the first Muslim woman to receive the prize. Another Nobel Peace Prize winner is Aung San Suu Kyi from Burma for her peaceful and non-violent struggle under a military dictatorship in Burma. She is a nonviolent pro-democracy activist and leader of the National League for Democracy in Burma (Myanmar) and a noted prisoner of conscience. She is a Buddhist and was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991. Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for "his long and non-violent struggle for fundamental human rights in China" on 8 October 2010. He is the first Chinese citizen to be awarded a Nobel Prize of any kind while residing in China. In 2014, Kailash Satyarthi from India and Malala Yousafzai from Pakistan were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize "for their struggle against the suppression of children and young people and for the right of all children to education".Sir C.V. Raman is the first Asian to get a Nobel prize in Sciences. He won the Nobel Prize in Physics "for his work on the scattering of light and for the discovery of the effect named after him".Japan has won the most Nobel Prizes of any Asian nation with 24 followed by India which has won 13.Amartya Sen, (born 3 November 1933) is an Indian economist who was awarded the 1998 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences for his contributions to welfare economics and social choice theory, and for his interest in the problems of society's poorest members.Other Asian Nobel Prize winners include Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar, Abdus Salam, Malala Yousafzai, Robert Aumann, Menachem Begin, Aaron Ciechanover, Avram Hershko, Daniel Kahneman, Shimon Peres, Yitzhak Rabin, Ada Yonath, Yasser Arafat, José Ramos-Horta and Bishop Carlos Filipe Ximenes Belo of Timor Leste, Kim Dae-jung, and 13 Japanese scientists. Most of the said awardees are from Japan and Israel except for Chandrasekhar and Raman (India), Abdus Salam and Malala yousafzai, (Pakistan), Arafat (Palestinian Territories), Kim (South Korea), and Horta and Belo (Timor Leste).In 2006, Dr. Muhammad Yunus of Bangladesh was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for the establishment of Grameen Bank, a community development bank that lends money to poor people, especially women in Bangladesh. Dr. Yunus received his PhD in economics from Vanderbilt University, United States. He is internationally known for the concept of micro credit which allows poor and destitute people with little or no collateral to borrow money. The borrowers typically pay back money within the specified period and the incidence of default is very low.The Dalai Lama has received approximately eighty-four awards over his spiritual and political career.WEB, His Holiness's Teachings at TCV,weblink A Brief Biography – The Office of His Holiness The Dalai Lama,, 1 June 2010,weblink" title="">weblink 25 May 2010, live, On 22 June 2006, he became one of only four people ever to be recognized with Honorary Citizenship by the Governor General of Canada. On 28 May 2005, he received the Christmas Humphreys Award from the Buddhist Society in the United Kingdom. Most notable was the Nobel Peace Prize, presented in Oslo, Norway on 10 December 1989.

Political geography

{{See also|List of sovereign states and dependent territories in Asia}}File:20091002 Hong Kong 6269.jpg|thumb|From 1841 to 1997, Hong Kong was a British colony.]]{{Asia Labelled Map}}{| class="sortable wikitable"! style="line-height:95%; width:2em" class="unsortable" | Flag! style="line-height:95%; width:2em" class="unsortable" | Symbol! Name! Population{{UN_Population|ref}}({{UN_Population|Year}})! Area(km²)! Capital {{Flagicon|Afghanistan}} (File:National emblem of Afghanistan.svg|25px)| Afghanistan {{UN_Population|Afghanistan}} 647,500| Kabul {{Flagicon|Armenia}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| Armenia {{UN_Population|Armenia}} 29,743| Yerevan {{Flagicon|Azerbaijan}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| Azerbaijantranscontinental country. {{UN_Population|Azerbaijan}} 86,600| Baku {{Flagicon|Bahrain}} (File:Emblem of Bahrain.svg|25px)| Bahrain {{UN_Population|Bahrain}} 760| Manama {{Flagicon|Bangladesh}} (File:National emblem of Bangladesh.svg|25px)| Bangladesh {{UN_Population|Bangladesh}} 147,570| Dhaka {{Flagicon|Bhutan}} (File:Emblem of Bhutan.svg|25px)| Bhutan {{UN_Population|Bhutan}} 38,394| Thimphu {{Flagicon|Brunei}} (File:Emblem of Brunei.svg|25px)| Brunei {{UN_Population|Brunei Darussalam}} 5,765| Bandar Seri Begawan {{Flagicon|Cambodia}} (File:Royal_arms_of_Cambodia.svg|25px)| Cambodia {{UN_Population|Cambodia}} 181,035| Phnom Penh {{Flagicon|China}} (File:National Emblem of the People's Republic of China (2).svg|25px)China>China (PRC) {{UN_Population|China}} 9,596,961| Beijing {{Flagicon|Cyprus}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| Cyprus {{UN_Population|Cyprus}} 9,251| Nicosia {{Flagicon|East Timor}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| East Timor {{UN_Population|Timor-Leste}} 14,874| Dili {{Flagicon|Egypt}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| Egypt {{UN_Population|Egypt}} 1,010,408| Cairo {{Flagicon|Georgia (country)}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}Georgia (country)>Georgia {{UN_Population|Georgia}} 69,700| Tbilisi {{Flagicon|India}} (File:Emblem of India.svg|15px)| India {{UN_Population|India}} 3,287,263| New Delhi {{Flagicon|Indonesia}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| Indonesia {{UN_Population|Indonesia}} 1,904,569| Jakarta {{Flagicon|Iran}} (File:Emblem of Iran.svg|25px)| Iran {{UN_Population|Iran (Islamic Republic of)}} 1,648,195| Tehran {{Flagicon|Iraq}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| Iraq {{UN_Population|Iraq}} 438,317| Baghdad {{Flagicon|Israel}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| Israel {{UN_Population|Israel}} 20,770| Jerusalem (disputed) {{Flagicon|Japan}} (File:Imperial Seal of Japan.svg|25px)| Japan {{UN_Population|Japan}} 377,915| Tokyo {{Flagicon|Jordan}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| Jordan {{UN_Population|Jordan}} 89,342| Amman {{Flagicon|Kazakhstan}} (File:Emblem of Kazakhstan.svg|25px)| Kazakhstan {{UN_Population|Kazakhstan}} 2,724,900| Nur-Sultan {{Flagicon|Kuwait}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| Kuwait {{UN_Population|Kuwait}} 17,818| Kuwait City {{Flagicon|Kyrgyzstan}} (File:National emblem of Kyrgyzstan.svg|25px)| Kyrgyzstan {{UN_Population|Kyrgyzstan}} 199,951| Bishkek {{Flagicon|Laos}} (File:Emblem of Laos.svg|25px)| Laos {{UN_Population|Lao People's Democratic Republic}} 236,800| Vientiane {{Flagicon|Lebanon}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| Lebanon {{UN_Population|Lebanon}} 10,400| Beirut {{Flagicon|Malaysia}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| Malaysia {{UN_Population|Malaysia}} 329,847| Kuala Lumpur {{Flagicon|Maldives}} (File:Emblem of Maldives.svg|25px)| Maldives {{UN_Population|Maldives}} 298| Malé {{Flagicon|Mongolia}} (File:State emblem of Mongolia.svg|25px)| Mongolia {{UN_Population|Mongolia}} 1,564,116| Ulaanbaatar {{Flagicon|Myanmar}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| Myanmar {{UN_Population|Myanmar}} 676,578| Naypyidaw {{Flagicon|Nepal}} (File:Emblem of Nepal.svg|25px)| Nepal {{UN_Population|Nepal}} 147,181| Kathmandu {{Flagicon|North Korea}} (File:Emblem of North Korea.svg|20px)| North Korea {{UN_Population|Dem. People's Republic of Korea}} 120,538| Pyongyang {{Flagicon|Oman}} (File:National emblem of Oman.svg|25px)| Oman {{UN_Population|Oman}} 309,500| Muscat {{Flagicon|Pakistan}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| Pakistan 211,103,000 881,913| Islamabad {{Flagicon|State of Palestine}} (File:Coat of arms of Palestine.svg|25px)State of Palestine>Palestine {{UN_Population|State of Palestine}} 6,220Ramallah(East Jerusalem>Jerusalem) (claimed) {{Flagicon|Papua New Guinea}} (File:National Emblem of Papua New Guinea.svg|35px)| Papua New Guinea {{UN_Population|Papua New Guinea}} 462,840| Port Moresby {{Flagicon|Philippines}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| Philippines {{UN_Population|Philippines}} 343,448| Manila {{Flagicon|Qatar}} (File:Emblem of Qatar.svg|25px)| Qatar {{UN_Population|Qatar}} 11,586| Doha {{Flagicon|Russia}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| Russia {{UN_Population|Russian Federation}} 17,098,242| Moscow {{Flagicon|Saudi Arabia}} (File:Emblem of Saudi Arabia.svg|25px)| Saudi Arabia {{UN_Population|Saudi Arabia}} 2,149,690| Riyadh {{Flagicon|Singapore}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| Singapore {{UN_Population|Singapore}} 697| Singapore {{Flagicon|South Korea}} (File:Emblem of South Korea.svg|25px)| South Korea {{UN_Population|Republic of Korea}} 100,210| Seoul {{Flagicon|Sri Lanka}} (File:Emblem of Sri Lanka.svg|20px)| Sri Lanka {{UN_Population|Sri Lanka}} 65,610| Colombo {{Flagicon|Syria}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| Syria {{UN_Population|Syrian Arab Republic}} 185,180| Damascus {{Flagicon|Taiwan}} (File:National Emblem of the Republic of China.svg|25px)Taiwan>Taiwan (ROC) {{UN_Population|China, Taiwan Province of China}} 36,193| Taipei {{Flagicon|Tajikistan}} (File:Emblem of Tajikistan.svg|25px)| Tajikistan {{UN_Population|Tajikistan}} 143,100| Dushanbe {{Flagicon|Thailand}} (File:Emblem of Thailand.svg|25px)| Thailand {{UN_Population|Thailand}} 513,120| Bangkok {{Flagicon|Turkey}} (File:Emblem of Turkey.svg|25px)| TurkeyEastern Thrace region of Turkey is in Europe. Therefore Turkey is a transcontinental country. {{UN_Population|Turkey}} 783,562| Ankara {{Flagicon|Turkmenistan}} (File:Emblem of Turkmenistan.svg|25px)| Turkmenistan {{UN_Population|Turkmenistan}} 488,100| Ashgabat {{Flagicon|United Arab Emirates}} (File:Emblem of the United Arab Emirates.svg|25px)| United Arab Emirates {{UN_Population|United Arab Emirates}} 83,600| Abu Dhabi {{Flagicon|Uzbekistan}} (File:Emblem of Uzbekistan.svg|25px)| Uzbekistan {{UN_Population|Uzbekistan}} 447,400| Tashkent {{Flagicon|Vietnam}} (File:Emblem of Vietnam.svg|25px)| Vietnam {{UN_Population|Viet Nam}} 331,212| Hanoi {{Flagicon|Yemen}} (File:Emblem of Yemen.svg|25px)| Yemen {{UN_Population|Yemen}} 527,968| Sana'aWithin the above-mentioned states are several partially recognized countries with limited to no international recognition. None of them are members of the UN:{| class="sortable wikitable"! style="line-height:95%; width:2em" class="unsortable" | Flag! style="line-height:95%; width:2em" class="unsortable" | Symbol! Name! Population! Area(km²)! Capital {{Flagicon|Abkhazia}} (File:Coat of arms of Abkhazia.svg|25px)| Abkhazia 242,862 8,660| Sukhumi {{Flagicon|Artsakh}} (File:Coat of arms of Artsakh.svg|25px)Republic of Artsakh>Artsakh 146,573 11,458| Stepanakert {{Flagicon|Northern Cyprus}} (File:Coat of arms of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.svg|25px)| Northern Cyprus 326,000 3,355| North Nicosia {{Flagicon|South Ossetia}} {{Coat of armstext=none}}| South Ossetia 51,547 3,900| Tskhinvali

See also

References to articles: Special topics: Lists: {{div col end}}




  • BOOK, harv, The myth of continents: a critique of metageography, Martin W., Lewis, Kären, Wigen, University of California Press, 1997, 978-0-520-20743-1, Berkeley and Los Angeles,
  • BOOK, harv, Michael, Ventris, John, Chadwick, Documents in Mycenaean Greek, 2nd, 1973, Cambridge, University Press,

Further reading

  • Higham, Charles. Encyclopedia of Ancient Asian Civilizations. Facts on File library of world history. New York: Facts On File, 2004.
  • Kamal, Niraj. "Arise Asia: Respond to White Peril". New Delhi: Wordsmith, 2002, {{ISBN|978-81-87412-08-3}}
  • Kapadia, Feroz, and Mandira Mukherjee. Encyclopaedia of Asian Culture and Society. New Delhi: Anmol Publications, 1999.
  • Levinson, David, and Karen Christensen. Encyclopedia of Modern Asia. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 2002.

External links

{{Sister project links|voy=Asia|Asia}}
  • WEB, Display Maps, The Soil Maps of Asia, European Digital Archive of Soil Maps – EuDASM,weblink 26 July 2011, dead,weblink" title="">weblink 12 August 2011,
  • WEB, Asia Maps, Perry–Castañeda Library Map Collection,weblink University of Texas Libraries, 20 July 2011,weblink" title="">weblink 18 July 2011, live,
  • WEB, Asia, Norman B. Leventhal Map Center at the Boston Public Library,weblink 26 July 2011, dead,weblink" title="">weblink 29 September 2011,
  • JOURNAL, What is Asia?,weblink Philip, Bowring, Eastern Economic Review, 135, 7, 12 February 1987,
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Eastern Philosophy
History of Philosophy
M.R.M. Parrott