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Finland and Scandinavia Facts

Scandinavia is a collection of four countries: Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Denmark that are positioned at the very top of the Northern area of Europe.

Due to the location, the countries are near the Arctic Circle and this creates weather conditions that are snowy and cold in the winter.

Summer month allows the sun to shine during both the day as well as the night however, during the winter the sun never shines.

In the very northern part of Scandinavia, it is dark for two months. Scandinavia is the home of the Vikings and the many Norse tales and stories.

Finland and Scandinavia Facts:

Population: 5,246,000 people
Capital City: Helsinki (1,075,000 people)
Languages: Finnish, Swedish
Religion: Evangelical Lutheran
Area: 130,558 sq mi (338,145 sq km)
Currency used: Euro
Literacy Percentage: 100
Life Expectancy: 78 years

Basic Facts for Denmark:

Population: 5,569,077 people
Capital City: Copenhagen
Area: 16,638 sq mi (43,094 sq km)
Language: Danish
Currency: Krone

Basic Facts for Sweden:

Population: 9,029,000 people
Capital City: Stockholm, 1,697,000 people
Language: Swedish
Religion: Lutheran and Roman Catholic
Currency: Swedish Krona
Area: 173,732 sq mi (449,964 sq km)
Literacy Percentage: 99
Life Expectancy: 80 years

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Basic Facts for Norway:

Population: 4,620,000 people
Capital City: Oslo, 795,000 people
Language: Norwegian
Religion: Evangelical Lutheran
Currency: Norwegian Krone
Area: 125,004 sq mi (323,758 sq km)
Literacy Percentage: 100
Life Expectancy: 79 years

Historical Facts:

During the Roman iron age there were many tribes that were taken over by the Roman empire. Most of Scandinavia remained too far away and with the exception of a few mentions by Roman authors, this area remained untouched by the Roman invasions.

Many of the ancient Scandinavians were famous for importing many Roman goods and goods from other settlements including vessel glass, images, weapons, and enameled buckles.

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Archeologists that have found bodies in the many bogs noted that the burials included wool clothes, household wares, and weapons.

During the Viking Age, the Scandinavians built wonderfully powerful sailing ships and boats and took to the seas for adventure and investigation. It was during this time that they expanded their explorations and overtook many of the countries in Europe. It is believed that this time period began at around 793 A.D.

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The Age of Settlement is referred to as beginning around 800 A.D. and during this time the Vikings were now settling in countries such as England, Scotland, Ireland, Greenland, Iceland, the Faroe Islands, Livonia, Normandy, the Shetland Islands, Sicily, and Vinland.

  • The 5th and 6th century A.D. brought more lucrative trading including silver and gold. This is attributed to the attacks by the Germanic tribes on the Roman empire and ransacking their possessions.
  • The Vikings believed in the Norse mythology of gods that ruled man and the earth. The various countries were each converted to Christianity starting from around 980 A.D. to 1060 A.D.
  • After converting to Christianity, each country became involved in a variety of battles and wars in an attempt to establish their own independence. In some cases, such as Finland and Norway, they banded together to form a country for a small amount of time.

Interesting Facts:

  • All three countries of Sweden, Norway and Finland have a lot of wildlife. They are filled with forests and have many swift-flowing rivers.
  • Each of the countries is a bit different. Sweden and Norway have a lot of mountainous areas while Denmark and Finland are more low-lying. Denmark has a rich agriculture, with many farms.
  • A majority of the population of each country lives near the lake regions or the sea.

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People in Scandinavian countries enjoy a very excellent quality of life. They pay extremely high taxes as compared to other countries, but this shares the wealth to all the people. They receive a good education and social and health benefits are available to everyone. The higher taxes also mean their internal infrastructure is above average and they have a cleaner and safer public transportation systems.

  • The Scandinavian northern region is called ‘Lapland’ and is inhabited by people that have lived there for centuries called ‘Sami’.
  • The Sami people have their own languages. There are five total Lapland languages spoken by the Sami people: North, South, Skolt, Inari and Lule.
  • The Sami people are reindeer herders and use the reindeer for milk and meat.