An alp refers to a high mountain pasture where cows are taken to be grazed during the summer months and where hay barns can be found, and the term "the Alps", referring to the mountains, is a misnomer.
In 1800, Napoleon crossed one of the mountain passes with an army of 40,000.
The 18th and 19th centuries saw an influx of naturalists, writers, and artists, in particular the Romantics, followed by the golden age of alpinism as mountaineers began to ascend the peaks.
According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the Latin Alpes might possibly derive from a pre-Indo-European word *alb "hill"; "Albania" is a related derivation.
Albania, a name not native to the region known as the country of Albania, has been used as a name for a number of mountainous areas across Europe.
The range stretches from the Mediterranean Sea north above the Po basin, extending through France from Grenoble, and stretching eastward through mid and southern Switzerland.
The range continues onward toward Vienna, Austria, and east to the Adriatic Sea and Slovenia.The highest portion of the range is divided by the glacial trough of the Rhône valley, with the Pennine Alps from Mont Blanc to the Matterhorn and Monte Rosa on the southern side, and the Bernese Alps on the northern.The peaks in the easterly portion of the range, in Austria and Slovenia, are smaller than those in the central and western portions.Mont Blanc spans the French–Italian border, and at 4,810 m (15,781 ft) is the highest mountain in the Alps.The Alpine region area contains about a hundred peaks higher than 4,000 metres (13,000 ft).Maurus Servius Honoratus, an ancient commentator of Virgil, says in his commentary (A.