List of Countries

14 Jan 2014


The below list of countries was compiled from this Wikipedia page. I will mark off the ones I’ve already done as I go through them. It’s interesting to note that there’s only 203 countries on the list – I haven’t yet figured out the cause of this discrepancy with this other list.

Note: I added Kosovo to this list.

Note 2: In researching the United Kingdom I ran into the distinction between “sovereign state” and (“country” or “nation”). The UK is a sovereign state consisting of four countries, with England as one of them. Sovereign states are generally treated as a singular entity with representation and recognition in the UN. Country and nation are strictly interchangable, but sovereign state and the two are not.

Note 3: Did some more research on the concept of “Sovereign States”. Wikipedia compiles a comprehensive list (“the other list”) of 206 sovereign states. Again, the original list I used only had 203, which seems to be more conservative.

Basically, there are 193 member states of the United Nations, and a new state can be admitted based on a recommendation from the Security Council (smaller council within the UN) and a vote by the General Assembly. The UN also admits observer states, which include the Holy See and Palestine. There are also other states, which are mostly states whose sovereignty is disputed. Wikipedia lists 193 member states, 2 observer states, and 11 other states. It’s also interesting that most of the 11 other states were not on the original list of 203, which indicate perhaps more than 206 “states” to research.

I will investigate the discrepancy between these lists in more detail later.

Note 4 As of Sept 28th, 2014, I have finished the existing list of countries. I have decided to continue with a few last disputed states, listed in the “other states” category of the United Nations system. These include: Abkhazia, Cook Islands, Nagorno-Karabakh, Niue, Northern Cyprus, Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic, Somaliland, South Ossetia, Transnistria. Kosovo and Taiwan are part of this list, but were also previously part of my own list.

Interesting Fact

The group consisting of Africa, Asia, and Europe is called Eurafrasia. (Apparently also called Afro-Eurasia, Afrasia, or Eurafrasia).

Also interesting to note what determines a “continent”. The term is broadly defined as a large continuous expanse of land, but borders are generally defined by convention rather than strict criteria. This leads to varying models of continents.

The List




North America

South and Central America and the Antilles


Published on 14 Jan 2014 Find me on Twitter!