What was the first embassy and consulate in the world? (2023)

February 17, 2021 5 minutes. read

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2186 Jamila Farman

What was the first embassy and consulate in the world? (1)

Let's say you've been working all year and you're ready for a great vacation. You have bought a ticket to travel to the country you have long dreamed of. And then you will be told that you need a visa to enter that country. Where should one get a visa? Or a group of people want to travel to your country. Who ensures that these people do not pose a threat to your country? Or who do you contact if you accidentally lose or damage your documents abroad? Perhaps you are not going on holiday but to work in another country. If you need multiple procedures for a vacation, who knows what you might need for work? The examples I have given you are the relations of ordinary people with other countries. There are also relationships between countries that are deeper and more complicated. There are about 8 billion people and about 200 countries in the world. But who regulates the movement of so many people and countries? Although these regulations are not only the responsibility of embassies and consulates, they still play an important role. Therefore, we examine the emergence of these two concepts, thefirst embassies and consulates in history, and its role today.

What's the message? What is the consulate?

To understand the meaning of a word that is unfamiliar to you, you need to delve into its etymology. If we google the etymology of the words “embassy” and “consulate”, we will find that the words embassy and consulate, like many words, come from Latin.
The word "Embactus" means in Latin"Knecht".The Cambridge dictionary suggests that the meaning of the word 'message' is 'TThe group of people who represent their country in a foreign country“. If we compare these two definitions, we see that although they don't have exactly the same meaning, they do share similarities. In today's sense of the word, the embassy is a servant of the country. The embassy is the diplomatic office abroad where the ambassador and other officials representing their country at the highest level operate. The embassy's presence indicates that the two countries maintain ongoing diplomatic relations. The embassy provides its own country with information about events in the host country. It's the officerCenter of Foreign Affairsestablished in other countries. The ambassador is the senior representative and spokesman of his country's government in the country in which he is located. In fact, the ambassador represents the head of state of his country.
The word "consulate" derives from the Latin word"Consulate".The consulate is a diplomatic office on the territory of another country that serves as a sub-unit of the embassy and represents its country.It is administered by the consul working under the ambassador. It can be set up in the main cities of the country. Consulates mainly deal withTravel and Immigration Issues. It is the duty of the consulate to issue visas to foreigners wishing to visit their country and to keep records of births, deaths, marriages and divorces of their own nationals in the host country. In addition, regulating relations between the host country and one's own country, facilitating trade and protecting the citizens living in the country are among the important tasks of the consulate.

What was the first message in the world?

The use of diplomacy is one of the defining elements of a state. Diplomatic relations have existed since the founding of the first city-states. In the beginning, diplomats only visited other countries for specific reasons and returned immediately after completing their mission. Diplomats had to be senior relatives of the ruling family to be legitimate in another country.
We first encountered such diplomatic relations in the Italian city-states in the 13th century. At that time there were five major city-states in Italy: Venice, Florence, Milan, the Papal States and the Kingdom of Naples. Representatives of these city-states were always in close contact with each other. However, the establishment of the first permanent embassy was initiated by the City of Milan, headed by Francesco Sforza. And that's how it happenedThe foundations of modern diplomacy were laid in Italy. This practice later spread throughout Europe, and in 1455 Italy sent its first representative to the French court.

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What was the first consulate in the world?

The word "consul" is found for the first time in ancient Roman sources. However, the duties of the consul in the Roman Empire were very different than they are today. In ancient Rome, for example, the consul was the highest-ranking elected person in the popular assembly.
In today's sense, like embassies,the first consulates appeared in Europe. These consulates were mostly located in European cities with access to the sea. That was the main task of the consulatesregulate interstate trade. These countries included the city-states of France and Italy, which were the most developed countries at the time. This system, founded in France, developed worldwide until the early 19th century and assumed its present status.

What are the differences between the embassy and the consulate?

Embassies and consulates are offices with diplomatic missions where a group of officials represent their country abroad. The responsibility, management, location and scope of these two government agencies differ from each other. Here are thedifferences:

  • administration

The chief head of the consulate is called the consul or consul-general, and there can be many consuls in a country. The ambassador is the head of the embassy and there can only be one ambassador in a country.

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  • Location

While consulates are located in major cities, financial centers and tourist hubs, the embassy is located in the capital.

  • responsibility

Consulates deal with minor matters while embassies deal with important diplomatic matters between the two countries.

Today's embassies and consulates

As I mentioned at the beginning of the article, there are around 195 countries in the world and we already know that embassies arelocated in the capitals. It turns out that there should be 194 embassies in each country. In order tohow many embassies are there in the world? It turns out that37830. Of course, this is an ideal situation. In reality it is completely different. This is due to various factors. The most important factor is the level of development of diplomatic relations between countries. That is,If country A has little or no economic or political interest in country B, the embassy in that country is not active.
According to Statista, the latest diplomatic missions are almost 6000 with 3944 embassies, 1588 consulates and 414 other diplomatic posts.Lowy Institute Global Diplomacy Indexcompiled the list of the top 10 countries with the most diplomatic missions abroad (2019). According to the Lowy InstituteChina tops the listwith 276 foreign posts, including 169 embassies. Other countries with the most diplomatic missions abroad are the USA (273), France (267), Japan (247), Russia (242), Turkey (234), Germany (224), Brazil (222), Spain (215) and Italy ( 209). So, as you can see, these countries are among the 20 most developed countries in the world. Therefore, it is no coincidence that they have most of the diplomatic posts abroad.
So which country has themat least diplomatic posts abroad? According to the Lowy Institute Global Diplomacy Index, this is also Bhutan. There are a total of 9 diplomatic missions, including 5 embassies and 2 consulates. These embassies are located in Bangladesh, Belgium, India, Kuwait and Thailand. As mentioned above, economic and political factors play a role in establishing diplomatic relations between countries. Using Bhutan as an example, we see that Bhutan is a landlocked country. If we look at the ranking of countries by GDP, we see that it ranks 164th in the world. So it has an unfavorable geographic location and economic situation. Therefore, in order to establish more diplomatic relations, this country must first develop its economy and succeed in the political sphere.
The question arises as to how many diplomatic missions my country has. At the beginning of the article I mentioned that we might have some problems abroad. Therefore, we always need to know where embassies and consulates of our country are located. Before you travel, make sure you know the addresses of your country's embassies. By clicking on the country name in the "Embassies', we can see the location, phone numbers and email address of the searched country.

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Jamila Farman


What was the first embassy? ›

John Adams then became the first U.S. ambassador to the Netherlands and the house that he had purchased there, at Fluwelen Burgwal 18 in The Hague, became the first U.S. embassy anywhere in the world.

When was the first foreign embassy? ›

In Europe, early modern diplomacy's origins are often traced to the states of Northern Italy in the early Renaissance, with the first embassies being established in the 13th century.

Where was the first US embassy in the world? ›

The United States established a consulate in Morocco in 1797 and in 1821 Sultan Moulay Suliman provided a home for the American Consul General which is now the oldest American diplomatic property in the world.

What is the oldest US embassy in the world? ›

As testament to the special nature of the U.S.-Moroccan relationship, the Moroccan city of Tangier is home to the oldest U.S. diplomatic property in the world, and the only U.S. National Historic Landmark located outside the United States, the Tangier American Legation.

What is a consulate vs embassy? ›

Embassies are the main representatives of their home country, whereas consulates are additional diplomatic offices. Embassies and consulates are considered legal territories of their home countries, meaning that the host country does not have jurisdiction over the embassy of another country.

Who started embassy? ›

Embassy Group, a leading development firm in real estate commenced its operations in 1993 led by Jitu Virwani, Chairman and Managing Director of the group. The establishment has developed 54+ Million Sq.

Why does the U.S. have an embassy? ›

The primary purpose of an embassy is to assist American citizens who travel to or live in the host country. U.S. Foreign Service Officers also carry out duties related to advancing U.S. interests abroad.

Where did the word embassy originate from? ›

The word embassy first meant "job or position of the ambassador," and comes from the Old French ambasse, with its Latin root of ambactus, or "servant."

Why were embassies created? ›

The modern emergence of embassies is the ad-hoc result of early European empires attempting to keep open communications and alliances with one another. That system didn't work well back in 1455, when Milan sent the first such permanent representative to France.

Which country has no U.S. embassy? ›

There are countries that enjoy full diplomatic relations with the U.S., but where, mainly for reasons of geographic convenience, the U.S. does not maintain any diplomatic presence. These include the African state of Guinea-Bissau, Grenada, Saint Lucia, and other small Caribbean islands.

Which is the biggest embassy in the world? ›

In 2004 the United States resumed diplomatic relations with the Iraqi Interim Government and established a new Embassy in Baghdad's fortified Green Zone. This new Embassy is the largest embassy in the world. The United States remains dedicated to building a strategic partnership with Iraq and the Iraqi people.

Where is the second biggest U.S. embassy in the world? ›

The embassy complex is about five times the size of the U.S. Embassy in Yerevan, which is the second-largest U.S. diplomatic mission abroad, as well as over ten times the size of the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, which is the third-largest U.S. diplomatic mission abroad.

Can a U.S. citizen walk into a US embassy? ›

Appointments are required for routine American Citizen Services. Please check your local U.S. Embassy/Consulate below for availability times. Please arrive fifteen minutes before your appointment to clear security. Mobile phones, other electronic devices and large bags are not permitted inside the Embassy/Consulate.

When and where was the first embassy established? ›

Embassies were first established in northern Italy in the 14th century. For most of history, diplomacy was concerned with bilateral relations, or negotiations between two nations. A country or region often had dozens of trade or border agreements, each limited to a single other country or region.

Are all U.S. embassies guarded by Marines? ›

At almost every US embassy around the world, a US Marine Security Guard is the first face a visitor sees — a sight that often intrigues foreign visitors and reassures the American diplomats who work there.

Does the US have a consulate? ›

United States itself in total counts near 163 Embassies and 93 Consulates spread all over the world.

How many consulates are in the US? ›

At present, 177 nations maintain diplomatic missions to the United States in the capital, Washington, D.C. Being the seat of the Organization of American States, the city also hosts missions of its member-states, separate from their respective embassies to the United States.

Is a US embassy considered US soil? ›

“A United States embassy,” it reads in section 16, “remains the territory of the receiving state, and does not constitute territory of the United States.” While embassies and consulates get special protections under international law, We can VERIFY, they aren't actually territory or “soil” of the country who runs them.

How many embassies are there in the world? ›

All data is from the Global Diplomacy Index 2019 of the Lowy Institute.
List of countries by number of diplomatic missions.
CountryEU States
Number of total posts3425
Embassies/ High Commissions2167
Consulates/ Consulates-General843
67 more columns

Why are embassies guarded? ›

The Mission

In the event of an attack, MSGs deter aggressors to safeguard diplomatic personnel and classified information. MSGs also control access within U.S. missions. They conduct inspections to ensure classified information is secure, and they monitor surveillance devices and fire alarms.

Does the US Embassy protect citizens? ›

Can the U.S. embassy help me if I'm the victim of a crime? Yes. If you're robbed, assaulted or otherwise victimized in a foreign country, you should contact the embassy as soon as possible.

Who owns the land of an embassy? ›

The sending state can give embassies sovereign status but this only happens with a minority of countries. Rather, the premises of an embassy remain under the jurisdiction of the host state while being afforded special privileges (such as immunity from most local laws) by the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations.

Does China have an embassy in the United States? ›

Contact Us_Embassy of the People's Republic of China in the United States of America. Address: 3505 International Place, N.W. Address: 2201 Wisconsin Avenue, N.W.

Does an embassy have its own laws? ›

Diplomatic law is that area of international law that governs permanent and temporary diplomatic missions.

What country does an embassy belong to? ›

Even though embassies and consulates are located in another country, they are legally considered territory of the country they represent. So the host country does not have jurisdiction inside the embassy of a foreign country.

What is head of an embassy called? ›

Embassy. The usual term for the main representative office of one country in the capital city of another; usually headed by an Ambassador.

What is the full meaning of embassy? ›

(embəsi ) Word forms: plural embassies. countable noun. An embassy is a group of government officials, headed by an ambassador, who represent their government in a foreign country. The building in which they work is also called an embassy.

Can police enter a consulate? ›

Under international law, security forces across the world are not allowed to enter an embassy without the express permission of the ambassador – even though the embassy remains the territory of the host nation.

How did the consulate come to be? ›

On November 9, 1799 (the month of "Brumaire" in the French Revolutionary calendar) Napoleon Bonaparte and Abbe Sieyes pulled off a coup in France. They overthrew the current Directory and replaced it with a new government: the Consulate.

Is an embassy its own country? ›

An embassy is the base for a country's diplomatic mission abroad – meaning all of the political, cultural and social relationships between the states. There will only be one embassy for one nation in another country, as it is where the country's ambassador works (and sometimes resides).

Does Russia have a U.S. Embassy? ›

There is one U.S. Embassy in Moscow and two Consulates General in Vladivostok and Yekaterinburg. The territory of Russia is divided among the Embassy and the Consulates into three Consular Districts.

Which country has the best embassy in the world? ›

China, US and France are the top 3 countries have the highest diplomatic posts/missions abroad, thus establishing big diplomatic footprint around the world.
Top countries with most diplomatic missions abroad.
Embassy or High Commissions169
Consulates / Consulate General96
Permanent Missions8
60 more columns
Jan 3, 2020

Why doesn't the U.S. have an embassy in Iran? ›

Direct bilateral diplomatic relations between the two governments were severed following the Iranian Revolution in 1979, and the subsequent seizure of the embassy in November 1979.

What is the biggest American consulate? ›

The 10-story building -- planned for a 12-acre site in Lagos -- will be the biggest American consulate in the world when it is completed in 2027, Mary Leonard, the U.S. ambassador to Nigeria, said at a groundbreaking ceremony on Thursday.

Is there only one US embassy per country? ›

Consulate. Each foreign country only has one embassy and one ambassador in the United States. Embassies are always located in the capital city, Washington, DC. Consulates are considered a branch of the embassy and are located in other American cities.

What is not allowed in U.S. embassy? ›

sealed envelopes or packages. cigarettes, cigars, match boxes, lighters. sharp objects such as scissors, pen knives or nail files. weapons or explosive materials of any kind.

What happens if you get stranded in another country? ›

Get in touch with the embassy

They can help you make arrangements if you are otherwise unable to solve for the situation on your own. You can find your nearest Embassy here or call 888-407-4747 (or, from overseas, call 1-202-501-4444). Related: What happens when you land in a country without entry rights?

Why are U.S. embassies still closed? ›

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many U.S. Consulates and Embassies closed temporarily.

What Marine Corps unit is not allowed back in the United States? ›

The 4th Marine Regiment hasn't been stationed in the continental United States since then. It is the only regiment whose lineage is rooted on the American mainland to deploy to the Pacific and never be rotated back, Marine officials said.

Why do Marines guard White House? ›

The secondary mission of Marine Security Guards is to provide protection for U.S. citizens and U.S. Government property located within designated U.S. Diplomatic and Consular premises during exigent circumstances, which require immediate aid or action.

Why are the Marines called the president's own? ›

On March 4, 1801, the Marine Band performed for Thomas Jefferson's inaugural and has performed for every Presidential inaugural since that time. Jefferson has been referred to as the "godfather" of the Marine Band, and he is credited with giving the band the title "The President's Own."

Why do US embassies exist? ›

What is the Purpose of an Embassy? A key purpose of an embassy is to assist citizens of its home country living, working, or traveling overseas. Embassies and their branches (called “consulates”) are necessary for both routine administration and emergency situations.

What is the largest U.S. embassy in the world? ›

In 2004 the United States resumed diplomatic relations with the Iraqi Interim Government and established a new Embassy in Baghdad's fortified Green Zone. This new Embassy is the largest embassy in the world.

How many embassies do the U.S. have? ›

United States itself in total counts near 163 Embassies and 93 Consulates spread all over the world.

Do U.S. laws apply in embassies? ›

THE ANSWER: No, while embassies and consulates are protected by international law and have a variety of immunities and special governing rules, the land they are built on doesn't belong to the country that operates them.

What country has the most embassies? ›

List of countries by number of diplomatic missions
RankCountryEmbassies/ High Commissions
-EU States2167
1United States172
64 more rows

Can U.S. Embassy protect U.S. citizens? ›

The embassy may help citizens with an emergency evacuation in a major crisis, such as a natural disaster or civil unrest. The Department of State says that it may provide citizens with travel warnings and advice about areas to avoid and how to seek help.

Can the police enter an embassy? ›

Diplomatic premises are inviolable and may not be entered without the consent of the Ambassador or Head of Mission. Where the police wish to conduct investigations with consular staff on consular premises (including officials' home addresses) advice should be taken from the PaDP.

What U.S. city has the most embassies? ›

Missions in New York City

There are 116 missions in the city.

What is the 2nd biggest US embassy? ›

The embassy complex is about five times the size of the U.S. Embassy in Yerevan, which is the second-largest U.S. diplomatic mission abroad, as well as over ten times the size of the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, which is the third-largest U.S. diplomatic mission abroad.

Is a US embassy U.S. land? ›

3) Are the U.S. Embassy and the Consulates General considered American soil? To dispel a common myth – no, they are not! U.S. foreign service posts are not part of the United States within the meaning of the 14th Amendment.


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