The Western world, also known as the West and the Occident (from Latin: occidens "sunset, West"; as contrasted with the Orient), is a term referring to different nations depending on the context. There is no agreed upon definition about what all these nations have in common.
The concept of the Western part of the earth has its roots in Greco-Roman civilization in Europe, with the advent of Christianity. In the modern era, the Western culture has been heavily influenced by the traditions of Renaissance, Protestant Reformation, Age of Enlightenment, and shaped by the expansive colonialism of the 15th-20th centuries. Its political usage was temporarily changed by an internal antagonism during the Cold War in the mid-to-late 20th Century (1947–1991).
The term originally had a literal geographic meaning, contrasting Europe with the linked cultures and civilizations of the Middle East, North Africa, Near East, South Asia, South East Asia and remote Far East, which used to be seen as the East by early-modern Europeans, but today this has little geographic relevance, since the United States and Canada are in the Americas, Russia expands to Northern Asia and Australia and New Zealand are part of Oceania.
The Nicolaus Copernicus Monument in Warsaw is one of the Polish capital's notable landmarks. It stands before the Staszic Palace, the seat of the Polish Academy of Sciences on Krakowskie Przedmieście. Designed by Bertel Thorvaldsen in 1822, it was completed in 1830.