History Of Sweden

History Of Sweden

Sweden, a Scandinavian country in Northern Europe with a population of 10.1 million, is the third largest country in European Union. In spite of this, the population density is quite low i.e. 22 inhabitants per square kilometer. Consisting of two major regions dominated by two domains i.e. north by forestry and south by agriculture, the county proves to be highly diverse and rich in flora.

  • Being military power in the 17th century and world's largest producers of weapons, the country hasn't been involved in any war for two centuries.
  • Swedes are one of the highly taxed individuals i.e. 51.4% of the GDP and yet they find it appealing to pay taxes.
  • Contains the highest number of McDonald's per capita with 227 restaurants.
  • The country has about 20,000 Sami inhabited. Sami was gifted the title of official language in 2000.
  • The country has 95,700 lakes larger than 100 x 100 meters which accounts for about 9% of the total area.

Ancient Sweden: Prehistory

  • First human interference was seen in 8,000 B.C. after ice age consummated. First Swedes were fishermen and Stone Age hunters living near the coast for livelihood.
  • Trade and exploitation of bronze began after 6,000 B.C. Contacts with Romans were followed by the trade of fur, iron and slaves among them. Mediterranean luxuries were given in exchange by Romans. This took place 500 B.C. afterward.

The onset of Viking explorers (800-1100)

  • Exploring north to south, traveling and invading countries on their way was what Vikings did. Norwegians and Danes invaded where Swedes were confined to trade.
  • Sweden being an agricultural society, was divided into three groups, thralls or slaves, freemen and jarls.
  • Swedes often crossed Russian Empire, visiting Byzantine Empire frequently for trade and export.

Kingdom of Sweden: Monarchy overrule (At the end of 900)

  • Eric the victorious known to be the pioneer of the monarchy in Sweden ruled both Sweden and Gothia.
  • At the onset of the 11th century, Sweden was converted to Christianity which led to its entrance into Western Civilization. Until the end of 11th century, Paganism lingered on in Sweden.
  • Finland was conquered by Swedes and remained in the hand of Swedes until 1809.

Sweden in Middle Ages (1300-1500)

  • 13th century experienced an immense change in agriculture; two field systems outnumbered the practice of three field system.  Jarl Birger found an altogether new town named Stockholm.
  • King Valdemar came up, passed laws and worked for the betterment of women rights and to anneal the crown.
  • The 1350s underwent Black Death era with the death of about 1/3rd population, Union of Kalmar and regent rule are some of the key events occurred between 13th -15th century.

Era of reformation and ruling (1600-1900)

  • Wars took place between Sweden and Denmark, Regents were replaced and Caroline absolutism occurred making Sweden an Absolute Monarchy in the 17th century.
  • Great Northern war commenced in the 18th century between Denmark, Poland and Russia. With the death of the king, Queen Ulrika replaced him and the age of freedom began for Sweden. Peasant number increased and export of iron and tar greatly improved.

Modern Sweden (2000-present)

  • Norway gained independence from Sweden in 1905. Unemployment rose to about 25% in the 1920s however, the Agrarian party worked to make the employment conditions improvised.
  • In 2006, elections were won by center-right coalition, 2009 saw a major cease in employment but the recovery was steady and now Sweden is a prosperous country with a GDP of 511 Billion USD.