is a North American
country consisting of ten provinces and three territories
. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean
in the east to the Pacific Ocean
in the west and northward into the Arctic Ocean
. It is the world's second largest country by total area
. Canada's common border
with the United States
to the south and northwest is the longest in the world.
The land that is now Canada was inhabited for millennia by various groups of Aboriginal peoples. Beginning in the late 15th century, British and French expeditions explored, and later settled, along the Atlantic coast. France ceded nearly all of its colonies in North America in 1763 after the Seven Years' War. In 1867, with the union of three British North American colonies through Confederation, Canada was formed as a federal dominion of four provinces. This began an accretion of provinces and territories and a process of increasing autonomy from the United Kingdom. This widening autonomy was highlighted by the Statute of Westminster of 1931 and culminated in the Canada Act of 1982, which severed the vestiges of legal dependence on the British parliament.
Canada is a federation that is governed as a parliamentary democracy and a constitutional monarchy with Queen Elizabeth II as its head of state. It is a bilingual nation with both English and French as official languages at the federal level. One of the world's highly developed countries, Canada has a diversified economy that is reliant upon its abundant natural resources and upon trade—particularly with the United States, with which Canada has had a long and complex relationship. It is a member of the G8, G-20, NATO, OECD, WTO, Commonwealth, Francophonie, OAS, APEC, and UN.
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The National Flag of Canada
, also known as the Maple Leaf
, and l'Unifolié
for "the one-leafed"), is a red flag
with a white square in its centre, featuring a stylized 11-pointed red maple leaf
. Its adoption in 1965 marked the first time a national flag had been officially adopted to replace the Union Flag
. The Canadian Red Ensign
had been unofficially used since the 1890s and was approved by a 1945 Order-in-Council
for use "wherever place or occasion may make it desirable to fly a distinctive Canadian flag". In 1964, Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson
appointed a committee to resolve the issue, sparking a serious debate about a flag change
. Out of three choices, the maple leaf design by George F. G. Stanley
based on the flag of the Royal Military College of Canada
was selected. The flag made its first appearance on February 15, 1965; the date is now celebrated annually as National Flag of Canada Day
Many different flags have been created for use by Canadian officials, government bodies, and military forces. Most of these flags contain the maple leaf motif in some fashion, either by having the Canadian flag charged in the canton, or by including maple leaves in the design. The Royal Union Flag is also an official flag in Canada, used as a symbol of Canada's membership in the Commonwealth of Nations, and of its allegiance to the Crown. The Union Flag forms a component of other Canadian flags, including the provincial flags of British Columbia, Manitoba and Ontario.
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(January 17, 1929 – February 27, 1986) was a Canadian
professional ice hockey goaltender
. He grew up in Shawinigan Falls, Quebec
, and began to play hockey in 1932. Because he suffered from asthma, his skating ability was restricted; thus, he began playing the goaltender position. Plante started to play organized hockey at age 12, and his first professional game was at age 18. He played for the Montreal Canadiens
from 1953 to 1963; during his tenure, the team won the Stanley Cup six times, including five consecutive wins.
Plante first retired in 1965, but was persuaded to return to the NHL to play for the expansion St. Louis Blues in 1968. He was later traded to the Toronto Maple Leafs in 1970, and to the Boston Bruins in 1973. He joined the World Hockey Association, first as coach and general manager for the Quebec Nordiques in 1973–74; he then played goal for the Edmonton Oilers in 1974–75, ending his professional career with that team.
Plante is considered one of the most important innovators in hockey. Most notably, Plante was the first NHL goaltender to wear a goalie mask in regulation play on a regular basis. With the assistance of other experts, he developed and tested many versions of the goalie mask, including the forerunner of today's mask/helmet combination. Plante was the first goaltender to regularly play the puck outside his crease in support of his team's defencemen, and often instructed his teammates from behind the play, as the goaltender usually has the best view of the game.
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Symbols of Canada -
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Canada on sister projects