CH nationality plate

This photo of a car smashed up after an accident reminds us that visitors to Europe from other parts of the world may be puzzled by the CH symbol on cars registered in Switzerland. Some nationality plates like I, F or B are easy to guess because they use the initial letter of the common, or universal name for the country. Others, like D or E reflect the name of the country in its own language – Deutschland and Espagne etc. But a few are more difficult to guess: HR is Croatia (Hrvatska), Wales is CYM (Cymru, or GB (Great Britain), as part of the UK) and Poland is PL.
The one in the picture? Confoederatio Helvetica is Latin for the first recorded tribe living in this part of Europe, the Helvetians, and the Confederation dates back to 1291. The more modern name Switzerland comes from the canton Schwyz, the most influential of the original three cantons in the Confederation. As well as on cars, CH is used on stamps, for the internet and for the Swiss Franc (CHF).