Northwestern Europe


Northwestern Europe, or Northwest Europe, is a loosely defined subregion of Europe, overlapping Northern and Western Europe. The term is used in geographic,[1] history,[2] and military contexts.[3]

Map of the countries included in a minimum definition of Northwestern Europe

Geographic definitions


Geographically, Northwestern Europe is given by some sources as a region which includes Great Britain,[4] Ireland,[4] Belgium,[5] the Netherlands,[5] Luxembourg,[6] Northern France,[5] parts of or all of Germany,[7][6] Denmark,[4] Norway,[6] Sweden,[6] and Iceland.[2][8] In some works, Switzerland, Finland, and Austria are also included as part of Northwestern Europe.[6]

Under the Interreg program, funded by the European Regional Development Fund, "North-West Europe" (NWE) is a region of European Territorial Cooperation that includes Belgium, Ireland, Luxembourg, Switzerland, the Netherlands and parts of France and Germany.[7]



During the Reformation, some parts of Northwestern Europe converted to Protestantism,[9] in a manner which differentiated the region from its Catholic neighbors elsewhere in Europe.[10][11]

A definition of Northwestern Europe was used by some late 19th to mid 20th century anthropologists, eugenicists, and Nordicists, who used the term as a shorthand term for the part of Europe with a predominantly Nordic population.[12][13][14][15] For example, Arthur de Gobineau, the 19th-century aristocrat who published works on the pseudoscience of scientific racism, included parts of Northwestern Europe in what Leon Baradat described as his "Aryan heaven".[16]



There is close genetic affinity among some Northwest European populations,[17] with some of these populations descending from Bell Beaker populations carrying steppe ancestry.[citation needed] For example, the Beaker people of the lower Rhine overturned 90% of Great Britain's gene pools, replacing the Basque-like neolithic populations present prior.[18]

See also



  1. ^ Pounds, Norman J. G. (September 1967). "Northwest Europe in the Ninth Century; Its Geography in Light of the Polyptyques". Annals of the Association of American Geographers. 57 (3). Taylor & Francis Ltd: 439–461. doi:10.1111/j.1467-8306.1967.tb00615.x. JSTOR 2561644.
  2. ^ a b Loveluck, Christopher (2013). Northwest Europe in the Early Middle Ages, c.AD 600–1150. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 9781107037632.
  3. ^ "North-West Europe campaign (1944–5)". Oxford Companion to Military History. Oxford University Press. 2001. ISBN 9780198606963.
  4. ^ a b c Barnes, R. J.; Barnes, Richard S. K. (1994). The Brackish-Water Fauna of Northwestern Europe. Cambridge University. ISBN 9780521455565. the area covered is northwestern Europe [..including..] the Atlantic coasts of Britain, Ireland and northern France, together with all English Channel coastlines and the fringes of the North Sea as far east as Skagerrak, and as far north as [..] Bergen in Norway
  5. ^ a b c Verhulst, Adriaan (1999). The Rise of Cities in North-West Europe. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 9782735108176.
  6. ^ a b c d e Boje, David M. (2015). Organizational Change and Global Standardization: Solutions to Standards and Norms Overwhelming Organizations. Routledge. ISBN 9781317633105. Northwestern Europe: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Scotland, United Kingdom, Switzerland
  7. ^ a b "Interreg North-West Europe". Interreg NWE. Retrieved 17 August 2023. The North-West Europe area [..] programme covers Belgium, Ireland, Luxembourg, The Netherlands, Switzerland as well as parts of France and Germany
  8. ^ The World and Its Peoples. Marshall Cavendish. 2014.[not specific enough to verify]
  9. ^ Boettiger, Louis Angelo (1938). Fundamentals of Sociology. Ronald Press. p. 325. Protestantism swept over those countries of northwestern Europe which have large proportions of Nordic elements represented in their populations
  10. ^ J. Richard, Carl (2006). The Battle for the American Mind: A Brief History of a Nation's Thought. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 20. ISBN 9780742534360. Retrieved 15 April 2015. Most of northwestern Europe converted to Protestantism, while most of southwestern Europe remained Catholic. Whether climate or ethnicity (northwestern Europe was more Germanic, southwestern Europe more latin) was the greater factor in this division remains a matter of dispute
  11. ^ Ciment, James; Radzilowski, John (2015). American Immigration: An Encyclopedia of Political, Social, and Cultural Change. Routledge. ISBN 9781317477174. The old immigrants, from northwestern Europe (Ireland, Great Britain, France, the Netherlands, the German states, and Scandinavia) [..] were primarily Protestants (except the Irish, who were mostly Catholic)
  12. ^ Hayes, Patrick J. (2012). The Making of Modern Immigration: An Encyclopedia of People and Ideas: An Encyclopedia of People and Ideas. ABC-CLIO. ISBN 9780313392030.
  13. ^ Porterfield, Austin Larimore (1953). Wait the Withering Rain?. Leo Potishman Foundation. ISBN 9780912646374. Retrieved 15 April 2015.
  14. ^ Hutton, Christopher (2005). Race and the Third Reich: Linguistics, Racial Anthropology and Genetics in the Dialectic of Volk. Polity. ISBN 9780745631776. Retrieved 15 April 2015.
  15. ^ d'Alroy Jones, Peter (1975). Since Columbus: Poverty and Pluralism in the History of the Americas. Heinemann. ISBN 9780435315252. Retrieved 15 April 2015.
  16. ^ Baradat, Leon P. (2015). Political Ideologies. Routledge. ISBN 9781317345558. Extending across northwestern Europe, Gobineau's Aryan heaven included Ireland, England, northern France [..], the Benelux countries and Scandinavia
  17. ^ Novembre, John; Johnson, Toby; Bryc, Katarzyna; Kutalik, Zoltán; et al. (2008). "Genes mirror geography within Europe". Nature. 456 (7218): 98–101. Bibcode:2008Natur.456...98N. doi:10.1038/nature07331. PMC 2735096. PMID 18758442. A statistical summary of genetic data from 1,387 Europeans based on principal component axis one (PC1) [..] may reflect a special role for this geographic axis in the demographic history of Europeans [..] PC1 aligns north-northwest/south-southeast
  18. ^ Olalde, Iñigo; Brace, Selina; Allentoft, Morten E.; Armit, Ian; et al. (2018). "The Beaker phenomenon and the genomic transformation of northwest Europe". Nature. 555 (7695): 190–196. Bibcode:2018Natur.555..190O. doi:10.1038/nature25738. PMC 5973796. PMID 29466337. migration played a key role in the further dissemination of the Beaker Complex, a phenomenon we document most clearly in Britain, where the spread of the Beaker Complex [..] was associated with a replacement of ~90% of Britain's gene pool within a few hundred years