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Earth, nations

How many countries are there in the world?

According to the United States State Department,
as of April 2002, there were 191 independent states.

The State Department defines independant states as "a people politically organized
into a sovereign state with a definite territory recognized as independent by the US."

You could view the list provided by State Department,
but I recommend The Nations of the World, according to Yakko (from the Animaniacs).

A handy online resource for finding out about specific countries (with maps)
in The World Factbook:



nation - 1. the body of inhabitants of a country, united under an independent government of their own.
2. A people who share common customs, origins, history, and frequently language; a nationality.

state - A politically organized body of people under a single government.
A political body, or body politic; the whole body of people who are united under one government, whatever may be the form of the government; a nation.

country - a) A nation or state. b) The territory of a nation or state; land. c)The people of a nation or state; populace.


US State Dept: Independent States in the World