Greece, since 1981, is member of the European Union and, together with 18 other EU member states a monetary union, the euro zone. It is a member of the United Nations, the OECD, NATO, the OSCE and the Council of Europe. The Human Development Index ranks Greece among the highly developed countries.
The Greeks of modern times call themselves Hellenes, but they had many different names throughout history. However, Homer (8th century BC) did not use the term "Hellene" in his epics. In classical antiquity, the Greeks hardly lay a point to present ithemselfves as a unified nation. The own home instead, be it a polis or a kingdom, was up to a few exceptions far more important. The participants in the Olympic Games were summarized as Hellenes. Perhaps it was this name later, in the first centuries of Christianity, being used as synonymous with paganism. From late antiquity until the end of the Middle Ages (1453), the Greeks even called themselves Rhomaioi (ancient Greek for, Romans').