Romanian history is eventful and deeply connected with its geographical position on the continent, at the crossroads of great historical empires. The territory of modern day Romania was inhabited in antic times by the Dacians, renowned in the historic sources of the time for their bravery. Under the rule of Burebista (82 BCE – 44 BCE), the Dacian Kingdom became a powerful regional force, menacing the interests of the Roman Empire that later (between 101 and 106 AD) conquered and occupied Dacia. The mixture of native Dacians and Roman colonists stands as the accepted theory of Romanians’ origins.
Throughout its history, the Romanian territories faced the military expansion or political and economic interests of neighboring or regional powers like the Russian Empire, the Austrian-Hungarian Empire, the Ottoman Empire. This led to a long series of confrontations, mostly against the expansion of the Ottoman Empire, that started in the late Middle Ages and continued until the complete independence of the country was achieved in 1877 and later its unity at the end of the First World War.
In the first decades of the 20th century, Romania, ruled as a constitutional monarchy, developed its economy and started applying important social reforms. However, at the end of the Second World War, the country fell under the complete influence of the USSR and a harsh communism regime was installed until December 1989.
The following years were marked by a difficult and somehow slow transition towards a stable democracy. Today, Romania is a member of the European Union (2007) and of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (2004).