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The name "Ethiopia" derives from the Greek ethio , meaning "burned" and pia , meaning "face": the land of burned-faced peoples.Aeschylus described Ethiopia as a "land far off, a nation of black men." Homer depicted Ethiopians as pious and favored by the gods.
Some peaks in the Simyen Mountains receive periodic snowfall, while the average temperature of the Danakil is 120 degrees Fahrenheit in the day time.
The high central plateau is mild, with a mean average temperature of 62 degrees Fahrenheit.
Unfortunately, however, the country's international standing has declined since the reign of Emperor Selassie, when it was the only African member of the League of Nations and its capital, Addis Ababa, was home to a substantial international community.
War, drought, and health problems have left the nation one of the poorest African countries economically, but the people's fierce independence and historical pride account for a people rich in self-determination. Ethiopia is the tenth largest country in Africa, covering 439,580 square miles (1,138,512 square kilometers) and is the major constituent of the landmass known as the Horn of Africa.
The Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) defeated the Derge, established democratic rule, and currently governs Ethiopia.
The last twenty-five years of the twentieth century have been a time of revolt and political unrest but represent only a small portion of the time during which Ethiopia has been a politically active entity.
The spread of Amharic has been strongly linked to Ethiopian nationalism.
Today, many Oromo write their language, Oromoic, using the Roman alphabet as a political protest against their history of domination by the Amhara, who account for significantly less of the population.
In March 1896, Italian troops attempted to enter Ethiopia forcibly and were routed by Emperor Menelik and his army.
The battle of Adwa was the only victory of an African army over a European army during the partitioning of Africa which preserved the country's independence.