Gaul is the name used for an area in Western Europe for the home of a great number of Celtic tribes and people. This area roughly covers most of modern France, Belgium, Luxembourg, and Switzerland and contains part of the Netherlands, Northern Italy, and Germany. The size of the region was about 494,000 square kilometers (191,000 square miles). The Gallic people were a part of the ancient La Tene culture, and occupied the area in various tribal states from the 5th to 1st centuries BCE. Gaul was conquered by the Romans throughout the 2nd and 1st centuries BCE, with the provinces of Cisalpine Gaul and Narbonensis being created in 203 BCE and 123 BCE respectively. The German Teuton and Cimbri tribes attempted to invade Gaul in 120 BCE, but were defeated by the Romans in 103 BCE. The entirety of Gaul would come under Roman rule following the conquests of Julius Caesar in the Gallic Wars, lasting from 58 - 51 BCE.
Rome would control Gaul for 5 centuries, lasting until the Domain of Soissons, a Roman rump state, fell in 486 AD to the Franks. By this time, much of the original Celtic culture of the Gauls had been merged into the broader Gallo-Roman culture. Despite this, Gaul would remain the name used for the region in the Early Middle Ages until it was mostly replaced by the term "France". Today, Gaul is rarely used, although it remains an alternative name for France in Greek and in Latin.