1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Sweden
SWEDEN [Sverige], a kingdom of northern Europe, occupying the eastern and larger part of the Scandinavian peninsula. It is bounded N.E. by Finland (Russian Empire), E. by the Gulf of Bothnia and the Baltic Sea, S.W. by the Cattegat and Skagerrack, and W. by Norway. It extends from 69° 3′ 21″ to 55° 20′ 18″ N., and from 11° 6′ 19″ E. on the south-west coast to 24° 9′ 11″ E. on the Finnish frontier, the extreme length being about 990 m., the extreme breadth (mainland) about 250 m., and the total area estimated at 173,547 sq. m. Out of a detailed total estimate of the boundary line at 6100 m., 4737 m. are coastal, the Norwegian frontier is 1030 m., and the Finnish 333 m.
Physical Features.—The backbone of the Scandinavian peninsula is a range, or series of masses, of mountains (in Swedish Kölen, the keel) extending through nearly the whole length of the peninsula towards the western side. The eastern or Swedish flank has, therefore, the slighter slope. This range forms, in a measure, a natural boundary between Sweden and Norway from the extreme north to the north of Svealand, the central of the three main territorial divisions of Sweden (Norrland, Svealand and Götaland); though this boundary is not so well markd that the political frontier may follow it throughout. Sweden itself may be considered in four main physical divisions—the mountains and highland district, covering all Norrland and the western part of Svealand; the lowlands of central Sweden; the so-called Småland highlands, in the south and south-east; and the plains of Skåne, occupying the extreme southward projection of the peninsula.
The first district, thus defined, is much the largest, and includes the greatest elevations in the country and the finest scenery. The highest mountains are found in the north, the bold Northern Highlands. peak of Kebnekaise reaching 7005 ft., Sarjektjåcko, 6972 ft., being the loftiest point of magnificent group including the Sarjeksfjäll, Alkasfjäll and Partefjäll, which range from 6500 ft. upwards; and, farther south, Sulitelma, 6158 ft., long considered the highest point in Scandinavia. Elevation then decreases slightly, through Stuorevarre (5787 ft.) and Areskutan (4656 ft.), to the south, of which the railway from Trondhjem in Norway into Sweden crosses the fine pass at Storlien. South of this again, before the main chain passes into Norway, are such heights as Helagsfjäll (5896 ft.) and Storsylen (5781 ft.); and a group of mountains in the northern part of the province of Dalecarlia (Dalarne) ranges from 3600 to 4500 ft. in height. The neighbourhood of Areskutan and the Dalarne highlands, owing to the railway and the development of communications by steamer on the numerous lakes, are visited by considerable numbers of travellers, both Swedish and foreign, in summer; but the northern heights, crossed only by a few unfrequented tracks, are known to few, and to a considerable extent, indeed, have not been closely explored. From the scenic standpoint the relatively small elevation of these mountains finds compensation in the low snow-line, which ranges from about 3000 ft. in the north to 5500 ft. in the south of the region. All the higher parts are thus snow-clad; and glaciers, numerous in the north, occur as far south as the Helagsfjäll. The outline of the mountains is generally rounded, the rocks having been subjected to erosion from a very early geological age, but hard formations cause bold peaks at several points, as in Kebnekaise and the Sarjeksfjäll.
From the spinal mountain range a series of large rivers run in a south-easterly direction to the Gulf of Bothnia. In their upper parts they drain great lakes which have resulted from the formation of morainic dams, and in some cases perhaps from the incidence of erratic upheaval of the land. All lie at elevations between 900 and 1300 ft. All are narrow Rivers of the North. in comparison with their length, which is not infrequently magnified to view when two lakes are connected by a very short stretch of running water with a navigable fall of a few feet, such as those between Hornafvan, Uddjaur and Storafvan on the Skellefte river. The following are the principal rivers from north to south: The Torne, which with its tributary the Muonio, forms the boundary with Finland, has a length of 227 m., and drains lake Torne (Torneträsk), the area of which is 126 sq. m. The Kalix is 208 m. in length. The Lule is formed of two branches, Stora and Lilla (Great and Little) Lule; the length of the main stream is 193 m. The Stora Lule branch drains the Langas and Stora Lule lakes (Langasjaur, Luleträsk), which have a length together exceeding 50 m., a fall between them of some 16 ft. and a total area of only 87 sq. m., as they are very narrow. Below Stora Lule lake the river forms the Hårsprang (hare's leap; Njuommelsaska of the Lapps), the largest and one of the finest cataracts in Europe. The sheer fall is about 100 ft., and there is a further fall of 150 ft. in a series of tremendous rapids extending for 11 m. Farther up, at the head of Langasjaur, is the Stora Sjöfall (great lake fall; Lapp, Ätna Muorki Kartje), a fall of 130 ft. only less grand than the Harsprång. Both are situated in an almost uninhabited count and are rarely visited. Following the Pite river (191 m.), the Skellefte (205 m.) drains Hornafvan and Storafvan, with a fall of 20 ft., and an area together of 272 sq. m. Hornafvan is a straight and sombre trough, flanked by big hills of unbroken slope, but Storafvan and the intervening Uddjaur are broad, throwing, off deep irregular inlets, and picturesquely studded with numerous islets. The Ume (237 m.) receives a tributary, the Vindel, of almost equal length, on the north bank some 20 m. from its mouth, and among several lakes drains Stor Uman (64 sq. m.). The further principal rivers of this region are the Ångerman (242 m.), Indal (196 m.), draining the large lakes Kallsjö and Storsjö, Ljusnan (230 m.), Dal and Klar. Of these the two last rise in the southernmost partof the mountain region described, but do not as a whole belong to the region under consideration. The Ångerman receives the waters of a wider system of streams and lakes than the rivers north of it, and has thus a drainage area of 12,591 sq. m., which is exceeded only by that of the Torne (16,690 sq. m.), the average of the remaining rivers named being about 7700 sq. m.
Beyond the Harsprång and the Stora Sjöfall the northern rivers do not generally form great falls, though many of the rapids are grand. The Indal, by changing its course in 1796 near Bispgården on the northern railway, has left bare the remarkable bed of a fall called Döda (dead) Fall, in which many “giant's caldrons” are exposed. In the uplands above the chain of lakes called Strömsvattudal, which are within the drainage area on the Ångerman, the Hälling stream forms the magnificent Hällingså Fall. In the southern mountain valleys of the region there are several beautiful falls, such as the Tännfors, not far from Åreskutan, the Storbo, Handöl and Rista.
Eastward from the main mountain range the highland region is divided into two belts: a middle belt of morainic deposits and marshes, and a coastal belt. The middle belt is gently undulating; viewed from rare eminences the landscape over the boundless forests resembles a dark green sea, through which the great rivers flow straight between steep, flat-topped banks, with long quiet reaches broken by occasional rapids. The few lakes they form in this belt are rather mere widenings in their courses; but the tributary streams drain numerous small lakes and peat-mosses. In the extreme north this belt is almost flat, a few low hills standing isolated and conspicuous; and the rivers have serpentine courses, while steep banks are absent. The middle belt merges into the coastal belt, covered by geologically recent marine deposits, reaching an extreme height of 700 to 800 ft., and extending inland some 60 to 80 m. in the north and 40 m. in the south. Small fertile plains are characteristic, and the rivers have cut deep into the soft deposits of sand and clay, leaving lofty and picturesque bluffs (nipor).
The orographical division of the central lowlands bears comparison in formation with the coastal belt of marine deposits to the north. Here are flat fertile plains of clay, well wooded, with innumerable lakes, including the four great lakes, Vener, Vetter, Mälar and Hjelmar. These, except the last, far exceed in area any of the northern lakes, and even Central Lowlands. Hjelmar (185 sq. m.) is only exceeded by Hornafvan-Storafvan. The areas of the other three lakes are respectively 2149, 733 and 449 sq. m. Vener, Vetter and Hjelmar are broad and open; Mälar is very irregular in form, and of great length. Mälar, Vener and Hjelmar contain many islands; in Vetter there are comparatively few. None of the lakes is of very great depth, the deepest sounding occurring in Vetter, 390 ft. In Hjelmar, which measures 38 m. from east to west, and is 12 m. in extreme width, the greatest depth is only 59 ft., but as its flat shores were formerly subject to inundation its level was sunk 6 ft. by deepening the navigable channel through it and clearing out various waterways (the Eskilstuna river, Hjelmar canal, &c.) in 1878–1887. The scenery of these lakes, though never grand, is always quietly beautiful, especially in the case of Mälar, the wooded shores and islands of which form a notable feature in the pleasant environs of the city of Stockholm. The elevation of the central lowlands seldom exceeds 300 ft., but a few isolated heights of Silurian rock appear, such as Kinnekulle, rising 988 ft. above sea-level on the south-eastern shore of Vener, Billingen (978 ft.) between that lake and Vetter, and Omberg (863 ft.) on the eastern shore of Vetter. Noteworthy local features in the landscape of the central lowlands are the eskers or gravel-ridges (åsar), traversing the land in a direction from N.N.W. to S.S.E., from 100 to 200 ft. in height above the surrounding surface. Typical instances occur in the cities of Stockholm (Brunkebergsåsen) and Upsala (Upsala-åsen).
South of the central lowlands the so-called Småland highlands extend over the old province of Småland in the south-east, and lie roughly south of Lake Vetter and of Gothenburg, where they reach the south-west coast. The general elevation of this region exceeds 300 ft., and in the eastern part 600 ft.; the principal heights are Tomtabacken (1237 ft.) and Småland Highlands. Ekbacken (1175 ft.), about 25 m. respectively south-east and west of the town of Jönköping at the southern extremity of Lake Vetter. Gentle forest-clad undulations, many small lakes and peat-mosses, are characteristic of the region; which, in fact, closely resembles the middle belt of the northern highland region. The Småland highlands abut southward upon the plains of Skåne, the last of the main orographical divisions, which coincides roughly with the old province of Skane (Scania). Level plains, with rich open meadows and cultivated lands, the monotony of which is in some parts relieved by beech woods, are separated by slight ridges with a general direction from N.W. to S.E., such as Hallandsåsen in the north-west, with an extreme elevation of 741 ft.
The hydrographical survey may now be completed. The Dal river, which enters the Gulf of Bothnia near Gefie, is formed of the union of eastern and western branches (Oster Dal, Vester Dal) not far from the town of Falun. The eastern branch drains various small lakes on the Norwegian frontier, and in its lower course passes through the beautiful Lake Rivers of the South. Siljan. The length of the whole river including the eastern as the main branch is 283 m. The Klar river (228 m.) rises as the Faemund river in Faemundsjö, a large lake in Norway close west of the sources of the Dal. The Klar flows south into Lake Vener, which is drained to the Cattegat by the short Göta river, on which, not far below the lake, are the celebrated falls of Trollhättan. Lake Vetter drains eastward by the Motala to the Baltic, Lake Mälar drains in the same direction by a short channel at Stockholm, the normal fall of which is so slight that the stream is sometimes reversed. The Småland highlands are drained to the Baltic and Cattegat by numerous rivers of less importance. Excepting Finland no country is so full of lakes as Sweden. About 14,000 sq. m., nearly one-twelfth of the total area, are under water.
The coast of Sweden is not indented with so many or so deep fjords as that of Norway, nor do the shores of the Gulf of Bothnia, the Baltic and the Cattegat share in the peculiar grandeur of the North Sea coast. All, however, have a common feature in the fringe of islands which, throughout nearly the entire length, shelters the coast of the mainland from the open Coast. sea. This “skerry-fence” (in Swedish, skärgård) is only interrupted for any considerable distance (in the case of Sweden) round the southern shore off the flat coast of Skåne, between the towns of Varberg on the west and Åhus on the east. Between it and the mainland lies a connected series of navigable sounds of the greatest advantage to coast wise traffic, and also of no little importance as a natural defence. The skärgård of the Cattegat, north of Varberg, is bald and rugged. The two largest islands are Orust and Tjörn, north of Gothenburg. Off the south-east coast the place of the skärgård is in a measure taken by the long narrow island of Öland, but north of this the skärgård begins to widen, and the most considerable fjords are found, such as Bråvik, which penetrates the land for 35 m. nearly up to the town of Norrköping. The island belt is widest (some 45 m.) off the city of Stockholm, the approach to which from the sea is famous for its beauty. Farther north, a narrow sound (Ålands Haf) intervening on the Swedish side, the vast Åland archipelago, belonging to Russia, extends across to the Finnish coast. The skärgård of the Gulf of Bothnia is less fully developed than that of either the Baltic or the Cattegat. The islands of the skärgård as a whole are rugged and picturesque, though never lofty like many of those off the Norwegian coast. In the Baltic many are well wooded, but the majority are bare or heath clad, as are those of the Gulf of Bothnia. Of the large islands in the Baltic and Cattegat, besides Öland, only Gotland is Swedish.
Geology.—The fundamental rocks of Sweden belong to the Azoic or pre-Cambrian formation, and consist of crystalline rocks. Three divisions are distinguished by some authors—the grey gneiss, the red iron gneiss and the granulate.
The grey gneiss predominates in the northern and eastern parts of the country, from Vesternorrland down to the province of Kalmar. The rock has a prevalent grey colour, and contains as characteristic minerals garnet and in some parts graphite.
The red iron gneiss prevails in western Sweden in the provinces of Vermland, Skaraborg, Elfsborg, and down to the province of Kristianstad. The formation is very uniform in its character, the gneiss having a red colour and containing small granules of magnetite, but, nevertheless, not a single iron mine belongs to this region. The red gneiss contains in many places beds or masses of hyperite.
The granulate, also called eurite and hälleflinta, is the most important of the Pre-Cambrian formation, as it contains all the metalliferous deposits of Sweden. It prevails in the middle part of the country, in Kopparberg, Vestmanland, Upsala and parts of Vermland. It occurs also in Östergötland, Kalmar and Kronoberg. The rock is a very compact and fine-grained mixture of felspar, quartz and mica, often graduating to mica schist, quartzite and gneiss. With these are often associated limestones, dolomites and marbles containing serpentine (Kolmården). The metalliferous deposits have generally the form of beds or layers between the strata of granulate and limestone. They are often highly contorted and dislocated.
The iron deposits occur in more or less fine-grained gneiss or granulate (Gellivara, Grängesberg, Norberg, Striberg), or separated from the, granulate by masses of augitic and amphibolous minerals (grönskarn), as in Persberg and Nordmark. Sometimes they are surrounded by hälleflinta and limestone, as at Dannemora, Långban, Pajsberg, and then carry manganiferous minerals. Argentiferous galena occurs at Sala in limestone, surrounded by granulate, and at Guldsmedshytta (province of Örebro) in dark hälleflinta. Copper pyrites occur at Falun in mica-schists, surrounded by hälleflinta. Zinc-blende occurs in large masses at Ammeberg, near the northern end of Lake Vetter. The cobalt ore consists of cobalt-glance (Tunaberg in the province of Södermanland) and of linneite (at Gladhammar, near Vestervik). The nickel ore of Sweden is magnetic pyrites, containing only a very small percentage of nickel, and generally occurs in diorite and greenstones. Besides the crystalline gneiss and hälleflinta there are also sedimentary deposits which are believed to be of pre-Cambrian age. The most important of these are the Dala Sandstone (chiefly developed in Dalarne), the Almasåkra and Visingsö series (around Lake Vetter) and the Dalsland formation (near Lake Vener).
Large masses of granite are found in many parts of Sweden, in Kronoberg, Örebro, Göteborg, Stockholm, &c. Sometimes the granite graduates into gneiss; sometimes (as north of Stockholm) it encloses large angular pieces of gneiss. Intrusions of hyperite, gabbro (anorthite-gabbro at Rädmansö in the province of Stockholm) and diorite are also abundant.
The Cambrian formation generally occurs along with the Ordovician, and consists of many divisions. The oldest is a sandstone, in which are found traces of worms, impressions of Medusae, and shells of Mickwitzia. The upper divisions consist of bituminous limestones, clay-slates, alum-slate, and contain numerous species of trilobites of the genera Paradoxides, Conocoryphe, Agnostus, Sphaerophthalmus, Peltura, &c. The Ordovician formation occurs in two distinct facies—the one shaley and containing graptolites; the other calcareous, with brachiopods, trilobites, &c. The most constant of the calcareous divisions is the Orthoceras limestone, a red or grey limestone with Megalaspis and Orthoceras. The subdivisions of the system may be grouped as follows: (1) Ceratopyge Limestone; (2) Lower Graptolite Shales and Orthoceras Limestone; (3) Middle Graptolite Shales, Chasmops and other Limestones, Trinucleus beds. The Cambrian and Ordovician strata occur in isolated patches in Vesterbotten, Jemtland (around Storsjö), Skaraborg, Elfsborg, Örebro, Östergötland and Kristianstad. The whole of the island of Öland consists of these strata. The deposits are in most places very little disturbed and form horizontal or slightly inclined layers. South of Lake Vener they are capped by thick beds of eruptive diabase (called trapp). North of Lake Siljan (province of Kopparberg), however, they have been very much dislocated. The Silurian has in Sweden almost the same character as the Wenlock and Ludlow formation of England and consists partly of graptolite shales, partly of limestones and sandstones. The island of Gotland consists entirely of this formation, which occurs also in some parts of the province of Kristianstad. In the western and northern alpine part of Sweden, near the boundaries of Norway, the Silurian strata are covered by crystalline rocks, mica schists, quartzites, &c., of an enormous thickness, which have been brought into their present positions upon a thrust-plane. These rocks form the mass of the high mountain of Åreskutan, &c.
The Triassic formation (Rhaetic division) occurs in the northern part of Malmöhus. It consists partly of sandstones with impressions of plants (cycads, ferns, &c.), and partly of clay-beds with coal. The Cretaceous formation occurs in the provinces of Malmöhus and Kristianstad and a few small patches are found in the province of Blekinge. Only the higher divisions (Senonian and Danian) of the system are represented. The deposits are marls, sandstones and limestones, and were evidently formed near the shore-line.
The most recent deposits of Sweden date from the Glacial and Post-Glacial periods. At the beginning of the Glacial period the height of Scandinavia above the level of the sea was greater than at present, Sweden being then connected with Denmark and Germany and also across the middle of the Baltic with Russia. On the west the North Sea and Cattegat were also dry land. On the elevated parts of this large continent glaciers were formed, which, proceeding downwards to the lower levels, gave origin to large streams and rivers, the abundant deposits of which formed the diluvial sand and the diluvial clay. In most parts of Sweden these deposits were swept away when the ice advanced, but in Skåne they often form still, as in northern Germany, very thick beds. At its maximum the inland ice not only covered Scandinavia but also passed over the present boundaries of Russia and Germany. When the climate became less severe the ice slowly receded, leaving its moraines, called in Sweden krosstenslera and krosstensgrus. Swedish geologists distinguish between bottengrus (bottom gravel, bottom moraine) and ordinary krossgrus (terminal and side moraine). The former generally consists of a hard and compact mass of rounded, scratched and sometimes polished stones firmly embedded in a powder of crushed rock. The latter is less compact and contains angular boulders, often of a considerable size, but no powder. Of later origin than the krosstensgrus is the rullstensgrus (gravel of rolled stones), which often forms narrow ranges of hills, many miles in length, called åsar. During the disappearance of the great inland ice large masses of mud and sand were carried by the rivers and deposited in the sea. These deposits, known as glacial sand and glacial clay, cover most parts of Sweden south of the provinces of Kopparberg and Vermland, the more elevated portions of the provinces of Elfsborg and Kronoberg excepted. In the glacial clay shells of Yoldia arctica have been met with in many places (e.g. near Stockholm). At this epoch the North Sea and the Baltic were connected along the line of Vener, Vetter, Hjelmar and Mälar. On the other side the White Sea was connected by Lakes Onega and Ladoga with the Gulf of Finland and the Baltic. In the depths of the Baltic and of Lakes Vener and Vetter there actually exist animals which belong to the arctic fauna and are remnants of the ancient ice-sea. The glacial clay consists generally of alternate darker and lighter coloured layers, which give it a striped appearance, for which reason it has often been called hvarfvig lera (striped clay). The glacial clay of the Silurian regions is generally rich in lime and is thus a marl of great fertility. The deposits of glacial sand and clay are found in the southern part of Sweden at a height ranging from 70 to 150 ft. above the level of the sea, but in the interior of the country at a height of 400 ft. above the sea.
On the coasts of the ancient ice-sea, in which the glacial clay was deposited, there were heaped-up masses of shells which belong to species still extant around Spitzbergen and Greenland. Most renowned among these shell-deposits are the Kapellbackarne near Uddevalla. With the melting of the great ice-sheet the climate became milder, and the southern part of Sweden was covered with shrubs and plants now found only in the northern and alpine parts of the country (Salix polaris, Dryas octopetala, Betula nana, &c.). The sea fauna also gradually changed, the arctic species migrating northward and being succeeded by the species existing on the coasts of Sweden. The Post-Glacial period now began. Sands (mosand) and clays (åkerlera and fucuslera) continued to be deposited on the lower parts of the country. They are generally of insignificant thickness. In the shallow lakes and enclosed bays of the sea there began to be formed and still is in course of formation a deposit known by the name gyttja, characterized by the diatomaceous shells it contains. Sometimes the gyttja consists mainly of diatoms, and is then called bergmjöl. The gyttja of the lakes is generally covered over by peat of a later date. In many of the lakes of Sweden there is still in progress the formation of an iron ore, called sjömalm, ferric hydroxide, deposited in forms resembling peas, coins, &c., and used for the manufacture of iron. (P. La.)
Climate.—The climate of the Scandinavian peninsula as a whole is so far tempered by the warm Atlantic drift from the south-west as to be unique in comparison with other countries of so high a latitude. The mountains of the Keel are not so high as wholly to destroy this effect over Sweden, and the maritime influence of the Baltic system has also to be considered. Sweden thus occupies a climatic position between the purely coastal conditions of Norway and the purely continental conditions of Russia; and in some years the climate inclines to the one character, in others to the other. As a result of the wide latitudinal extent of the country there are also marked local variations to be contrasted. About one-seventh of the whole country is north of the Arctic Circle. The mean annual temperature ranges from 26.6° F. at Karesuando on the northern frontier to 44.8° at Gothenburg and 44.6° at Lund in the south (or 29.5° to 45° reduced to sea-level). Between these extremes the following actual average temperatures have been observed at certain stations from north to south which are appropriately grouped for the purpose of comparison (heights above sea-level following each name):—
Jockmock (850 ft.), at the foot of the lake-chain on the Little Lule River—29.7°; and Haparanda (30 ft.), at the head of the Gulf of Bothnia—32.4°.
Stensele (1076 ft.), at the foot of the lake-chain on the Ume—31.8°; and Umeå (39 ft.) at its mouth on the Gulf of Bothnia—34.9°.
Östersund (1056 ft.) on Storsjö—35.2°; and Hernösand (49 ft.) on the Gulf of Bothnia—37.8°.
Karlstad (180 ft.) at the head of Lake Vener—42.3°; Örebro (102 ft.) at the west of Lake Hjelmar—41.4°; and Stockholm (144 ft.)—42.1°.
Gothenburg (26 ft.) on the Cattegat—44.8°; Jönköping (312 ft.) at the south of lake Vetter—42.4°; and Vestervik (43 ft.) on the Baltic—43.2°.
But the local variations thus indicated are brought out more fully by a consideration of seasonal, and especially winter, temperatures. In Sweden July is generally the hottest month, the average temperature ranging from about 51° to 62°. In January, however, it ranges from 4° to 32° (February is generally a little colder). Moreover, there are two well-marked centres of very low winter temperature in the inland parts. The one is in the mountainous region of the south of jemtland and the north of Dalarne, extending into Norway and thus lying in the middle of the peninsula about 62° N. Here the average temperature in January is 8.5°, whereas at Ostersund it is over 15°. The other and more strongly marked centre is in the far north, extending into Norway and Finland, where the average is 3.8°. The effect of the spinal mountain range in modifying oceanic conditions is thus illustrated. The same effect is well shown by the linguiform isotherms. In January, for example, the isotherm of 14°, after skirting the north coast of the Scandinavian peninsula, turns southward along the Keel, crossing the upper part of the district of the great northern lakes. It continues in this direction as far as the northern end of Lake Mjösen in Norway (61° N.), then turns sharply north-north-eastward, runs west of Lake Siljan and bends north-east to strike the Bothnian coast near Skellefteå. In July, on the other hand, the isotherms show an almost constant temperature all over the country, and the linguiform curves are wanting.
The relative length of the seasons shows contrasts similar to those of temperature. In the north spring begins in May, summer in the middle of June and autumn in the middle of August. In the south and south-west spring begins in March, summer in the middle of May and autumn in October. At Karesuando the last frost of spring occurs on an average on the 15th of June, and the first of autumn on the 27th of August, though night frosts may occur earlier; while at Stockholm 4½ months are free of frost. Ice forms about October in the north, in November or December in the midlands and south, and breaks up in May or June and in April respectively. Ice covers the lakes for 100 to 115 days annually in the south, 150 in the midlands and 200 to 220 in the north. A local increase of the ice period naturally takes place in the upper parts of the Småland highlands; and in the case of the great lakes of Norrland, the western have a rather shorter ice period than the eastern. As to the seas, the formation of ice on the west and south coasts is rare, but in the central and northern parts of the Baltic drift-ice and a fringe of solid ice along the coast arrests navigation from the end of December to the beginning of April. Navigation in the southern part of the Gulf of Bothnia is impeded from the end of November to the beginning of May, and in the north the gulf is covered with ice from November to the last half of May. Snow lies 47 days on an average on the plains of Skåne, while in the north it lies from 140 to 190 days.
The northern summers find compensation for brevity in duration of sunshine and light. At Karesuando in 68° 26' N. and 1093 ft. above sea-level the sun is seen continuously above the horizon from the 26th of May to the 18th of July; at Haparanda for 23 hours, at Stockholm for 18½ hours and at Lund for 17½ hours at the summer solstice. Atmospheric refraction causes the sun to be visible for periods varying from south to north for a quarter to half an hour after it has actually sunk below the horizon. With the long twilight, perhaps the most exquisite period of a season which provides a succession of beautiful atmospheric effects, daylight lasts without interruption from the 16th to the 27th of June as far south as Hernösand (62° 38' N.).
The average annual rainfall for Sweden is 19.72 in., locally increasing on the whole from north to south, and reaching a maximum towards the south-west, precipitation on this coast greatly exceeding that on the south-east. Thus the average in the north of Norrland is 16.53 in., in the south of Norrland 22.6 in. At Borås, midway between the south end of Lake Vetter and the Cattegat, the average is 35.08 in., and 45.82 in. were registered in 1898. At Kalmar, however, on the Baltic opposite Öland, the average is 14.6 in. This is an extreme instance for the locality, but the minimum for all Sweden is found at Karesuando, with 12.32 in. The period of maximum is generally the latter half of summer, and the minimum in February and March; but the maximum occurs in October at coast stations in Skåne and in the island of Gotland. The proportion of total precipitation which falls as snow ranges from 36% in the north to 9% in the south.
Flora.—In the preceding physical description indications are given of the vast extent of forest in Sweden. The alpine treeless region occupies only the upper flanks of the spinal mountain-range above an elevation varying from 1800 ft. in the north to 3000 ft. in the south. It is belted by a zone of birch woods, with occasional mountain-ash and aspen, varying in width from about 20 m. in the north to a fraction of a mile in the south. Below this extends a great region of firwood covering the whole country north-east of Lake Vener and north of the Dal River. The fir (Pinus sylvestris) and pine (Pinus abies) are the predominating trees. Spruce is common, and even predominates in the higher parts (between the great valleys and immediately below the birch-belt) in the north of Norrland. South of the southern limit indicated in the midland district of the great lakes, the oak (Quercus pedunculata) appears as well as pine and fir; and, as much of this area is under cultivation, many other trees have been introduced, as the ash, maple, elm and lime. South of a line running, roughly, from the foot of Lake Vener to Kalmar on the Baltic coast the beech begins to appear, and in Skåne and the southern part of the Cattegat seaboard becomes predominant in the woods which break the wide cultivated places. Of wild flowering plants only a very few are endemic species (though more are endemic varieties); the bulk are immigrants after the last glacial epoch. Of these most are common to arctic lands, or occur as alpine plants in lower latitudes. The number of species decreases according to geographical distribution from south to north; thus while upwards of 1000 are found in Skåne, there are only about 700 in the midlands, 500 in the lower parts of southern Norrland and less than 200 in the extreme north.
Fauna.—The effects of the great latitudinal range of Sweden on its climate and flora has its parallel to a modified extent in the case of fauna. Only a few animals are common to the entire country, such as the hare (Lepus timidus) and the weasel; although certain others may be added if the high mountain region be left out of consideration such as the squirrel, fox and various shrews. Among large animals, the common bear and the wolf have been greatly reduced in numbers even within later historic times. These and the lynx are now restricted to the solitary depths of the northern forests. Characteristic of the high mountainous region are the arctic fox, the glutton and the lemming, whose singular intermittent migrations to the lowlands have a considerable temporary influence on the distribution of beasts and birds of prey. There may also be mentioned the wild reindeer, which is rare, though large domesticated herds are kept by the Lapps. The elk, carefully preserved, haunts the lonely forests from the Arctic Circle even to the Småland highlands. The roe-deer and red-deer are confined to the southern parts; though the first is found in the south of the midland plains. In these plains the fox is most abundant, and the badger and hedgehog are found. Martens and otters are to some extent hunted for their skins. A white winter fur is characteristic of several of the smaller animals, such as the hare, fox and weasel. The common and grey seals are met with in the neighbouring seas, and Phoca foetida is confined to the Baltic. Among birds by far the greater proportion is migrant. Characteristic types common to the whole country are the teal, snipe, golden plover and wagtail. In the northern mountains the ptarmigan is common, and like other creatures assumes a white winter dress; ducks and other water-fowl frequent the lakes; the golden eagle, certain buzzards and owls are found, and among smaller birds the Lappland bunting (Plectrophanes laponicus) may be mentioned. In the coniferous forests the black grouse, hazel grouse and willow grouse, capercailzie and woodcock are the principal game birds; the crane is found in marshy clearings, birds of prey are numerous, and the Siberian jay in the north and the common jay in the south are often heard. But in the northern forests small birds are few, and even in summer these wilds give a strong general impression of lifelessness. In the midlands the partridge is fairly common, though not readily enduring the harder winters; and ring-doves and stock-doves occur. The lakes are the homes of a variety of aquatic birds. On the coasts a number of gulls and terns are found, also the eider-duck and the sea-eagle, which, however, is also distributed far over the land. The species of reptiles and amphibians are few and chiefly confined to the southern parts. There are three species of snake, including the viper; three of lizard; and eleven of batrachians. The rivers and lakes are generally well stocked with fish, such as salmon, trout of various species, gwyniad and vendace (especially in the north), pike, eels, perch of various species, turbot, bream and roach. The few sportsmen who have visited the higher parts of the great northern rivers have found excellent trout-fishing, with pike, perch, char and grayling, the char occurring in the uppermost parts of the rivers, and the grayling below them. The fisheries, both fresh-water and sea, are important, and fall for consideration as an industry. The herring, cod, flatfish, mackerel and sprat are taken in the seas, and also great numbers of a small herring called strömming. In the brackish waters of the east coast sea fish are found, together with pike, perch and other fresh-water forms. The crayfish is common in many places in central and southern Sweden. Pearls are sometimes found in the fresh-water mussel (Margaritana margaritifera); thus a tributary of the Lilla Lule River takes its name, Perle River, from the pearls found in it. Among the lower marine animals a few types of arctic origin are found, not only in the Baltic but even in Lakes Vener and Vetter, having remained, and in the case of the lakes survived the change to fresh water, after the disappearance of the connexion with the Arctic seas across the region of the great lakes, the Baltic, and north-east thereof. The molluscan fauna is fairly rich, and insect fauna much more so, even in the north. In summer in the uplands and the north the mosquito is sufficiently common to cause some little annoyance.
People.—The population of Sweden in 1900 was 5,136,441. The census is taken in an unusual manner, being drawn up from the registries of the clergy according to parishes every ten years. Approximate returns are made by the clergy annually. The following table shows the distribution of population in that year through the län or administrative districts. The first column shows the older divisions of the county into provinces, the names and boundaries of which differ in many cases from the län. These names, as appears elsewhere in this article, remain in common use. The distribution of provinces and län between the three main territorial divisions, Norrland (northern), Svealand (central) and Götaland (southern) is also indicated.
|Göteborg och Bohus||1,948||337,175|
The population in 1908 was about 5,429,600. In 1751 it was 1,802,373, and in 1865, 4,114,141. The average annual increase was 7.86 per thousand in the 19th century, reaching a maximum of 10.39 in 1841–1860, before the period of extensive emigration set in. Emigrants numbered 584,259 men and 424,566 women between 1851 and 1900, these figures helping to account for the considerable excess of women over men in the resident population, which in 1900 was as 1049 to 1000. The periods of greatest emigration were 1868–1873 and 1879–1893; the decline in later years is regarded as a favourable sign. The United States of America receive a large majority of the emigrants, and only a very small percentage returns. The Swedish people belong to the Scandinavian branch, but the population includes in the north about 20,000 Finns and 7000 Lapps. Other foreigners, however, are few, and the population is as a whole homogeneous. Immigrants in the period 1851–1900 numbered only 165,357.
Population is naturally denser in the south than in the north, and densest of all in the districts along the southern coasts; thus Malmöhus Län has about 220 persons per sq. m., Göteborg och Bohus Län 174 and Blekinge 127. In Norrland as a whole, however, there are less than 9 persons per sq. m., in Norrbottens Län less than 4, and in the uplands of this division and Vesterbottens Län much less than this. However, the annual increase per thousand has been greater in Norrland than elsewhere. The annual excess of births over deaths is high, the proportion being as 1.68 to 1. The birth-rate between 1876 and 1900 averaged 28.51 per thousand; the death-rate between 1891 and 1900 was 16.36 per thousand, the lowest ever recorded over such a period for any European country. The lowest mortality is found in the districts about Lakes Vener and Vetter; the highest in Norbotten, the east midland districts, Skåne, and Göteborg och Bohus Län.
The percentage of illegitimacy is rather high (though it decreased during the second half of the nineteenth century); one cause of this may be found in the fact that the percentage of married persons is lower than in most European countries. As regards social evils generally, however, the low, though undoubtedly improving, standard of Sweden has had one of its chief reasons in the national intemperance. In 1775 Gustavus III. made the sale of spirits (brännvin) a government monopoly, and the drinking habit was actually fostered. About 1830 this evil reached its highest development, and it is estimated that nine gallons of spirits were then consumed annually per head of the population. Mainly through the efforts of Peter Wieselgren, dean of Gothenburg (1800–1877), a strong temperance reform movement set in, and in 1855 important liquor laws were passed to restrict both production and sale of intoxicating liquors. The so-called Gothenburg System, providing for municipal control of the sale of intoxicants (see Liquor Laws), came into full operation in Gothenburg in 1865. The temperance movement has had its reward; the average of consumption of beer and spirits in Sweden is considerably lower than in Europe as a whole, though the effect of intoxicants is sometimes very apparent.
A marked difference of temperament is noticeable between the Swedes and Norwegians, the Swedes being the more lighthearted and vivacious. In some of the more remote parts of the country old customs are maintained and picturesque local costumes still worn, as in Dalecarlia (q.v.). The Lapps moreover retain their distinctive dress. In other cases early costumes are preserved only as a historical reminiscence at festivities. Although the characteristic celebrations at weddings or periodical festivals are, as elsewhere, decreasing in favour, there are certain occasions which are observed as holidays with much ceremony. Such are Christmas Day, and, not unnaturally in this northern land, Midsummer (June 23 and 24). The food of the people in the midlands and south is plentiful and good; in the remoter parts of the north an unfavourable summer is followed by a winter of scarcity or even famine; and in these parts meat is little used. Rye is extensively employed in the rural districts for the making of a hard bread in flat cakes (knäckebröd). A prevalent custom among the better classes is that of beginning meals with a selection of such viands as anchovies, smoked salmon or slices of meat, of which a number of small dishes are provided (smörgåsbord). These are taken with bread and butter and a glass of spirits. The more characteristic Swedish sports are naturally those of the winter. These include ski-running (skidlöpning), skating and skate-sailing, tobogganing and sledging. The numerous inland waters and sheltered channels within the skärgård have caused the high development of sailing as a summer sport, the Royal Swedish Yacht Club having its headquarters in Stockholm. Athletic sports are in high favour, especially such winter sports as snow-shoeing (ski), and, among ball games, lawn-tennis, and to some extent football, together with the game of pärk, peculiar to Gotland, are played.
Towns.—In the first half of the 19th century the percentage of urban population remained nearly stationary at a little less than 10. In 1880 it was 15.12, and in 1900 21.49. The towns with a population exceeding 15,000 in 1900 are Stockholm (300,624), Gothenburg (130,609), Malmö (60,857), Norrköping (41,008), Gefle (29,522) Helsingborg (24,670), Karlskrona (23,955), Jönköping (23,143), Upsala (22,855), Örebro (22,013), Lund (16,621), Borås (15,837), Halmstad (15,362).
Swedish towns, though rarely of quite modern foundation, generally appear so, for the use of brick in building is mainly of modern introduction, and is still by no means general, so that the partial or total destruction of a town by fire is now only less common than formerly. The rectangular method of laying out streets is general, and legislation Architecture. has been directed against narrow streets and buildings of excessive height. The common material of the characteristic domestic architecture in rural districts is wood, except in Skåne, where stone is available and has been used from early times. Some of the old wooden farm-buildings, especially in Dalarne, such as are preserved in Skansen Museum at Stockholm, are extremely picturesque. Another notable form in old wooden building is the belfry (klokstapel) of some village churches, examples of which are seen at Habo near Jönköping and Håsjö in Jemtland on the northern railway. In the midlands and south fine castles and manor houses of the 16th and 17th centuries are fairly numerous, and there are a few remains of previous date. The fortified dwelling-house at Glimmingehus in the extreme south near Simrishamn is a good early example. Several of the southern ports have old citadels. That of Kalmar, on its island, is specially fine, while those at Vestervik (Ståkeholm), Malmö, Falkenberg and Varberg may also be mentloned. Among country palaces or mansions that of Gripsholm is notable, overlooking Lake Mälar, the shores of which are specially rich in historic sites and remains. In ecclesiastical architecture Sweden possesses the noble cathedrals of Lund, Upsala and Linköping; while that of Skara, near the southern shore of Lake Vencr, dates originally from 1150, and that of Strengnäs on Lake Mälar was consecrated in 1291. There is a remarkably perfect Romanesque church, with aisles, eastern apse and ambulatory, at Varnhem in Skaraborg Län, and there are a few village churches of the same period in this district and in Skåne. The monastic church at Vadstena on Lake Vetter is a beautiful example of Gothic of the 14th and 15th centuries. But the richest locality as regards ancient ecclesiastical architecture is the island of Gotland (q.v.).
Travel and Communications.—As a resort for foreign travellers and tourists Sweden lacks the remarkable popularity of Norway. The Göta canal route, however, is used by many; the uplands of Dalecarlia (Dalarne) are frequented; and the railway through the Jemtland highlands to Trondhjem gives access to a beautiful region, where numerous sanatoria are in favour with the Swedes themselves. The northern railway offers a land route to the Arctic coast of Norway. Along the southern coasts there are many watering-places. Marstrand near Gothenburg is one of the most fashionable; Strömstad, Lysekil and Varberg on the same coast, Ronneby on the Baltic, with its chalybeate springs, Visby the capital of Gotland, and several villages in the neighbourhood of Stockholm may also be noted. The headquarters of the Swedish Touring Club (Svenska Turistföreningen) are in Stockholm, but its organization extends throughout the country, and is of special value to travellers in the far north.
The first railway in Sweden was opened for traffic in 1856, and the system has developed extensively; more so, in fact, in proportion to population, than in any other European country. About 8000 m. of railway are open, but extensions are constantly in progress. About two-thirds are private lines and one-third government lines. The central administration of the government Railways. lines is in the hands of a board of railway directors, and there are local administrative bodies for each of five districts. A railway council, created in 1902, acts as an advisory body on large economical questions and the like. Private railways are controlled by the regulations of the board, while a joint traffic union has as its object the provision of uniformity of administration, tariff, &c. The government has made grants towards the construction of some of the private lines, and has in a few cases taken over such lines. The railways form a network over the country as far north as Gefle and the district about Lake Siljan. The government works the trunk lines from Stockholm to Malmö, to Gothenburg and to Christiania as far as the Norwegian frontier, and other important through routes in the south. The great northern line is also worked by the government. It runs north from Stockholm roughly parallel with the east coast, throwing off branches to the chief seaports, and also a branch from Bräcke to Östersund and Storlien, where it joins a line from Trondhjem in Norway. At Boden the main line joins a line originally built to connect the iron-mines of Gellivara with the port of Luleå; the system is continued past Gellivara to Narvik on the Ofoten Fjord in Norway, this being far north of the Arctic Circle, and the line the most northerly in the world. The gauge of all the government lines and about 66% of the private lines is 1.435 metres (4 ft. 81 in.). Nearly all the lines are single. Passenger travelling is slow, but extremely comfortable. The principal connexions with the south are made across the sound from Malmö to Copenhagen, and from Trelleborg to Sassnitz in Germany.
The extensive system of natural waterways, especially in central Sweden, has been utilized to the full in the development of internal navigation, just as the calm waters within the skärgård afford opportunity for safe and economical coastwise traffic. The earliest construction of canals dates from the 15th century, the patriot Engelbrekt and King Gustavus Inland Navigation. Vasa both foreseeing its importance. The theories of construction remained rudimentary until early in the 19th century, when the Göta (q.v.) canal was opened. The total length of the canalized water-system of Sweden is a little over 700 m., though wholly artificial waterways amount only to 115 m. out of this total. A large local traffic is carried on by steam launches on the lakes during the season of open navigation; and vessels have even been introduced on some of the lakes and rivers of the far north, principally in connexion with the timber trade. Posting, which is of importance only in the highland districts and the valley roads of Norrland, is carried on by posting-stations (skjutsstation) under government regulations; similar regulations apply when, as in the upper valleys of the great northern rivers, rowing boats on the lakes form the only means of travel. The condition of the high roads is fair as a whole, and has been much improved by increased state grants towards their upkeep; but in Norrland they are naturally not of the best class. The postal and telegraph system is efficacious, and the telephone service, maintained partly by the state and partly by companies, is very fully developed. About twenty telephones are in use per thousand of population, and a system of trunk-lines between the important towns has been established since 1889.
Agriculture.—Of the total land area of Sweden only about 12% is arable or meadow land, but the percentage varies greatly in different parts. as will be understood from a recollection of the main physical divisions. Thus in Skane nearly 69% of the land is under cultivation; in the midlands about 30%; in the north from 4.5% in southern Norrland to 3% in northern Norrland. Almost exactly half the total area is under forest, its proportion ranging from 25% in Skane to upwards of 70% in the inland parts of Svealand and in the south of Norrland. Land which is neither cultivable nor under forest (marsh land or, in the northern mountainous districts, land above the upper limit of the forests) amounts to 61% in the far north and 36% in the Småland highlands, but only to 15% in the central plains and in Skåne. In the more highly cultivated districts of the south reclamation of such lands is constantly proceeding. Agriculture and cattle-breeding employ over one-half the whole population. The average size of farms is 25 acres of cultivated land; only 1% exceeds 250 acres, whereas 23% are of 5 acres or less. The greater part of the land has always been held by small independent farmers (only about 15% of the farms are worked by tenants), but until late in the 18th century a curious method of parcelling the land resulted in each man's property consisting of a number of detached plots or strips, the divisions often becoming so minute that dissension was inevitable. Early in the 19th century various enactments made it possible for each property to become a coherent whole. A legal parcelling (laga skifte) was introduced in 1827 and slowly carried out in the face of considerable local opposition; indeed, in the island of Gotland the system could not be enforced until 1870–1880. Roughly about 48.5% of the total cultivated area is under cereals, 33.8 under fodder plants, 5.8 under root-crops, and 11.8 fallow, this last showing a steady decrease. Oats, rye, barley, mixed grain and wheat are the grain-crops in order of importance. During the 19th century the percentage under wheat showed a general tendency to increase; that under oats increased much in the later decades as livestock farming became common, rye maintained a steady proportion, but barley, formerly the principal grain-crop, decreased greatly. This last is the staple crop in Norrland, becoming the only grain-crop in the extreme north; in the richer agricultural lands of the midlands and south rye is predominant in the east, oats in the west. The high agricultural development of the plains of Skåne appears from the fact that although that province occupies only one-fortieth of the total area of Sweden, it produces 30% of the entire wheat crop, 33% of the barley, 18% of the rye and 13% of the oats. A system of rotation (cereal, roots, grass) is commonly followed, each division of land lying fallow one year as a rule; not more than two ripe grain-crops are commonly taken consecutively. Potatoes occupy 4.4% of the total area, and other root-crops 1.4%. These include the sugar-beet, the profitable growing of which is confined to Skåne and the islands of Öland and Gotland. The sugar industry, however, is very important. Orchards and gardens occupy about 1% of the cultivated area. Fruit-trees are grown, mainly in the south and midlands; northward (as far as Hernösand) they flourish only in sheltered spots on the coast. Between 1850 and 1900 the total head of livestock increased from 4,500,000 to 5,263,000, and the great advance of cattle-farming is evident from the following proportions. Whereas in 1870–1875 imported cattle and cattle-farming produce exceeded exports as 12 to 7, in 1900 the value of exports was nearly double that of imports; and it may be added that whereas as late as 1870–1880 the exports of agricultural produce exceeded imports in value, in 1896–1900 they were less than one-tenth. The principal breeds of cattle are the alpine in Norrland, and Ayrshire, short-horn, and red-and-white Swedish in the midlands and south. The Gotland, an old native light yellow breed, survives in the island of Gotland. Oxen, formerly the principal draught animals, have been replaced by horses. Cattle, especially cows, and pigs form the bulk of the livestock, but sheep and goats have greatly decreased in numbers. The Lapps own upwards of 230,000 head of reindeer. Dairy-farming is profitable, England and Denmark being the principal foreign consumers of produce, and the industry is carefully fostered by the government. A board of agriculture had been in operation for many years when in 1900 a separate department of agriculture was formed. There are one or more agricultural societies in each län, and there are various state educational establishments in agriculture, such as the agricultural high schools at Ultuna near Upsala, and at Alnarp near Lund in Skåne, an important agricultural centre, with dairy schools and other branch establishments. Finally, there are numerous horticultural societies, large nurseries and gardening schools at Stockholm, Alnarp and elsewhere, and botanical gardens attached to the universities of Lund and Upsala.
Forests and Forestry.—Of the forests about one-third are public; the majority of these belong to the Crown, while a small proportion belongs to hundreds and parishes. The remainder is in private hands. The public forests are administered by the office of Crown lands through a forest service, which employs a large staff of forest-masters and rangers. The private forests are protected from abuse chiefly by the important legislation of 1903, which prescribes penalties for excessive lumbering and any action liable to endanger the regrowth of wood. The administration of the law devolves upon local forest conservancy boards. In the great fir forests of the north the limit set in respect of cutting down living trees for sawing and export is a diameter of the trunk, without bark, of 81 in. at 151 ft. from the base. Members of the forest service undergo a preliminary course of instruction at a school of forestry, and a further course at the Institute of Forestry, Stockholm, which dates from 1828. There are very numerous sawmills, using water power, steam and electricity; they are situated chiefly in the coast districts of the Gulf of Bothnia, from Gefle northwards, especially in the neighbourhood of Sundsvall and along the Ångerman River, and in the neighbourhood of all the ports as far north as Luleå and Haparanda. There are also upland mills in Dalarne and Vermland, and a considerable number in the neighbourhood of Gothenburg. The wood-pulp industry centres in the districts west and north of Lake Vener and south of Lake Vetter. In the north vast quantities of timber are floated down the great rivers, and the lesser streams are used as floating-ways by the provision of Humes and dams. The mill owners either own forests, or lease the right of cutting, or buy the timber when cut, in the Crown or private forests. Among the special articles exported may be mentioned railway-sleepers, pit-props, and wood-pulp.
Fisheries.—The sea-fisheries, which are prosecuted principally in the calm waters within the skärgård, are a variable source of wealth. For example, in 1894 nearly 2,000,000 cwt. of fresh fish (principally herring) were exported, but in subsequent years the fisheries were much less prolific; in 1900 only 80,000 cwt. were exported, and in 1903 less than 150,000 cwt. As a rule each crew jointly owns its boat and tackle. The fishery is of ancient importance; at the old towns of Falsterbo and Skanör, south of Malmö, thousands of fishermen were employed until the harbours became choked in 1631, and the fish were a valuable item in the Hanseatic commerce. There are rich salmon-fisheries in the lower parts of the great northern rivers, especially the Torne, Kalix, Lule, Ångerman and Indal; in the Dal, the Klar and Göta, and several of the lesser rivers of the south. In the majority of rivers no special necessity has been found to protect the fishing. As a general rule the owner of the shore owns the river fishing. The chief inspector of fisheries is a member of the board of agriculture.
Mining.—The iron-mining industry is of high importance, the output of iron ore forming by far the largest item in the total output of ores and minerals. Thus in 1902 the total output was nearly 3½ million tons, of which 2,850,000 tons were iron ore. The output of iron ore has greatly increased; in 1870-1880 it averaged annually little more than one-quarter of the amount in 1902. The deposits of iron ore are confined almost wholly to the extreme north of Norrland, and to a midland zone extending from the south of the Gulf of Bothnia to a point north of Lake Vener, which includes the Dannemora ore fields in the eastern part. In Norrland the deposits at Gellivara have long been worked, with the assistance of a railway to the Bothnian port of Luleå, but in 1903 the northern railway was completed across the Norwegian frontier to Narvik on Ofoten Fjord, and the vast deposits at the hills of Kirunavara and Luossavara began to be worked. These deposits alone are estimated to have an extent exceeding one-quarter of the total ore fields worked in the country. The deposits are generally in pockets, and the thickness of the beds ranges from 100 to nearly 500 ft. at Kirunavara, up to 230 ft. at Gellivara, and in the midland fields generally from 40 to 100 ft., although at the great field of Grängesberg, in Kopparberg and Örebro Län, a thickness of nearly 300 ft. is found. Nearly all the ore is magnetite, and in the midlands it is almost wholly free of phosphorus. The percentage of iron in the ore is high, as much as 66% in the Kirunavara-Luossavara ore; and little less in that of Grängesberg; this far exceeds other European ores, though it is equalled by some in America. Sweden possesses little coal, and pig-iron is produced with charcoal only; its quality is excellent, but Sweden's proportion to the world's produce is hardly more than 1%, whereas in the 17th and 18th centuries, before the use of coal elsewhere, it was much greater. As an industry, however, the production both of pig-iron and of wrought iron and steel is increasingly prosperous. The ironworks and blast-furnaces are almost wholly in the midland districts. Copper has been mined at Falun since the 14th century; it is also produced at Åtvidaberg in Östergötland. The production, however, has greatly decreased. A little gold and silver are extracted at Falun, and the silver mines at Sala in Vestmanlands Län have been worked at least since the 16th century, but here again the output has decreased. Lead is produced at Sala and Kafveltorp, and zinc ore at Åmmeberg. Coal is found in small beds in Skåne, east and north of Helsingborg, at Billesholm, Bjuf and Höganäs; but the amount raised, although increasing, is only some 300,000 tons annually. Mining administration is in the charge of a special bureau of the board of trade. The iron Institute (Järnkontoret) was established in 1748 as a financial institution, in which the chief iron-mining companies have shares, for the advancement of advantageous loans and the promotion of the industry generally. It maintains a special education and investigation fund. There are schools of mining at Stockholm (the higher school), Falun and Filipstad in Vermland.
Manufactures.—If the total value of the output of the manufacturing industries in Sweden be taken as 100, the following are the most important of those industries, according to the approximate percentage of each to the whole: iron industries 18.3, and mechanical works 4; saw-milling 12.5 and wood-pulp works 2.5; cloth-factories and spinning-mills 8; flour-mills 6.4; sugar-refining and beet-sugar works 6; spirit distilling and manufacture 4.7, and brewing 2.6; dairy products 4.4; paper making 1.6; leaving a remainder of 29% for other industries. The total annual value of the output is about £72,000,000. The great mechanical works are found at or near Malmö, Stockholm, Jönköping, Trollhättan, Motala on Lake Vetter, Lund, Gothenburg, Karlstad, Falun and Eskilstuna, which is especially noted for its cutlery. A few other establishments including both mechanical workshops and ore-extraction works may be mentioned: Domnarfvet, on the Dal River, near Falun; Sandviken, near Gefle; and Bofors in Örebro Län. The principal centres of the textile industry are Norrköping in Östergötland and Borås in Elfsborg Län, where there are weaving schools; and the industry is spread over Elfsborg Län and the vicinity of Gothenburg. There is a linen industry in Småland and in the south of Norrland. One of the most notable special industries of Sweden is match-making, for which there are large works at Jönköping, Tidaholm in Skaraborg Län and in the neighbourhood of Kalmar. The centre of the beet-sugar industry is Skåne, but it is also carried on in the island of Gotland; its great access of prosperity is chiefly owing to the existence of a protective duty on imported sugar. Spirit distillation centres in Kristianstad Län. Among other industries may be mentioned the earthenware works at Höganäs at the north end of the Sound, the cement works of Lomma in this vicinity, and the pottery works of Rörstrand in, and Gustafsberg near, Stockholm; where beautiful ware is produced. Stone is worked chiefly in Göteborg och Bohus and Blekinge Län.
Commerce.—Exports approach £30,000,000 and imports £40,000,000 in average annual value.
Of the total exports that of timber, wrought and unwrought, represents 50%; the other principal exports with approximate percentage are: iron and steel 13.5, iron ore 3.6, machinery and implements 3.2, and other iron and steel goods 2.7; butter 10; paper 3.4; carpentry work 3; matches 2.3. The principal imports with percentage to the whole are: coal and coke 15, grain 8, coffee 4.6, machinery 4, wool, yarn, thread, cotton and woollen goods 9.4; hides and skins 2.5. Oil and fish are also important. The principal countries trading with Sweden are the United Kingdom (exports from Sweden 38.2%, imports to Sweden 25.7), Germany (exports 16%, imports 39) and Denmark (exports 14%, imports 12.5). Other countries with which Sweden has mainly an export trade are France, the Netherlands and Norway. With Russia on the other hand the trade is principally import. In the case of the United Kingdom, Germany, Denmark and Norway, the transit trade forms an important proportion of the whole. The coal imported (which forms over 90% of the whole consumed) comes mainly from Great Britain; while most of the colonial produce, such as coffee and tobacco, comes through Germany. The match and paper export trade is principally with the United Kingdom. Between 1865 and 1888 Sweden employed a modified system of free trade, but various enactments in 1888 and 1892 reintroduced methods of protection.
Shipping.—The total number of vessels in the Swedish commercial fleet is about 3000 of 650,000 tons register; of which steamers represent about 380,000 tons. On an average about 73,000 vessels, of an aggregate tonnage of 17,500,000, enter and clear the ports. The principal ports of register are Gothenburg, Stockholm, Helsingborg and Gefle, in order; though the principal commercial ports are Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmö. Owing to the natural configuration of the coast and the skärgård excellent natural harbours are almost without number. Artificial harbours are consequently few, but those at Helsingborg, Malmö, Halmstad, Ystad and Kalmar may be mentioned. The principal docks are at Gothenburg, Stockholm, Malmö, Oskarshamn and Norrköping, besides the naval docks at Karlskrona; and the principal ports where large vessels can be accommodated on slips are Malmö, Gothenburg, Stockholm, Karlskrona and Gefle. A list of the chief ports may be conveniently classified. On the west coast north of Gothenburg are Strömstad, near the Norwegian frontier, and Uddevalla, on a deep inlet behind the island of Orust, 35 m. from the open Cattegat. South of Gothenburg on the open coast are Varberg and Halmstad; and on the Sound are the three large ports of Helsingborg, Landskrona and Malmö. Passing to the Baltic, Trelleborg and Ystad lie on the southernmost coast of the country, and Simrishamn, Åhus the outport of Kristianstad, Karlshamn, Ronneby and Karlskrona on the wide Hanö Bay. On Kalmar Sound are Kalmar and Oskarshamn; and continuing northward, Vestervik, Söderköping at the head of the inlet Slätbäken, Norrköping, similarly situated on Bråviken, and Stockholm, far within the skärgård. On the Bothnian coast there is a port at or near the mouth of each great river, where the timber floated down from the interior is both worked and exported. The chief ports here, from south to north, are: Gefle, Söderhamn, Hudiksvall, Sundsvall, Hernösand, Ornsköldsvik, Umeå, Skellefteå, Piteå and Luleå, the last exporting the ore from the northern iron-mines.
Banks.—The first Swedish bank, called the Palmstruch bank after its founder, Johan Palmstruch, was incorporated in 1656. It began to issue notes in 1661. It was shortly afterwards bankrupt, and in 1668 the Bank of Sweden (Sveriges Riksbank) succeeded it. This is managed by a board of seven delegates, the chairman being elected by the government, while the Riksdag (parliament) elects the remainder. It began to issue notes in 1701. This ability was shared by private banks with solidary responsibility until 1903, but under a reform of 1897 the riksbank took over, from 1904, the whole right of issuing paper currency, which is in wide use. The capital of the riksbank is 50,000,000 kronor (£2,250,000). The other banks are joint-stock banks and savings-banks, of which the first was opened at Gothenourg in 1820. The post office savings bank was opened in 1884.
Coinage.—The counting unit in the Swedish coinage is the krona, equal to 1.1 shilling. The monetary unit is 10 kronor gold, and gold pieces, not widely met with in circulation, are struck of 20, 10 and 5 kronor. The krona equals 100 öre. Silver pieces of 2 and 1 krona, 50, 25 and 10 öre are struck, and bronze pieces of 5, 2, and 1 öre. Sweden, Norway and Denmark have the same monetary system.
Finance.—In the budget for 1910 revenue and expenditure were estimated at £12,674,300. The principal sources of income in the ordinary revenue are railways, forests, telegraphs and rent from Crown lands; and those in the revenue voted (bevillningar), which is about seven-eighths of the whole, customs, the taxes on spirits and beet sugar, and income from the post office. The departments to which the bulk of expenditure is devoted are those of the army, the interior, the navy and education. A large proportion of the army expenditure was formerly defrayed by a system of military tenure on certain lands. Land-taxes, however, were finally abolished in 1904, and their place was taken by an increased taxation on real estate, revised triennially, and by an income tax arranged on a sliding scale, up to 4% of the income (9.6 pence in the £), settled according to individual declaration. The national debt was practically nil until c. 1855, and the debt contracted thereafter owes its existence almost wholly to railway construction. It increased from about £2,300,000 in 1860 to £6,400,000 in 1870 and £18,600,000 in 1900. In 1904 it exceeded £19,000,000. The greater proportion of communal revenue comes from income and property tax. the sale of spirits under the Gothenburg System, and contributions from the treasury. Primary education, poor relief, and Church purposes form the principal items of expenditure.
Constitution and Government.—Sweden is a limited monarchy, the constitution resting primarily on a law (regerings-formen) of the 6th of June 1809. The king is irresponsible, and executive power is vested in him alone. All his resolutions, however, must be taken in the presence of the cabinet (statsråd). The cabinet councillors are appointed by the king and are responsible to the parliament (Riksdag). They are eleven in number, one being prime minister, two others consultative ministers, and the remaining eight heads of the departments of administration, which are justice, foreign affairs, land defence, naval defence, home affairs, finance, public works, agriculture. The councillors must be of Swedish birth and adherents of the Lutheran confession. The appointment of the majority of public officials is vested in the king, who can himself dismiss cabinet ministers and certain others, whereas in most cases a judicial inquiry is necessary before dismissal. The king shares legislative powers with the Riksdag, (parliament or diet), possessing the rights of initiation and absolute veto. He has also, in certain administrative and economic matters, a special legislative right.
The Riksdag consists of two chambers. The members of the first chamber are elected by the landsthing, or representative bodies of the län, and by the municipal councils of some of the larger towns. They number 150, and are distributed among the constituencies in proportion to population; the distribution being revised every tenth year. Eligibility necessitates Swedish birth, an age of at least 35 years, and the possession, at the time of election and for three years previously, either of real property to the value of 80,000 kronor (£4400), or an annual income on which taxes have been paid of 4000 kronor (£220). Members are unpaid. The members of the second chamber number 230, of whom 150 are elected from rural constituencies and 80 from towns. The members receive a salary of 1200 kronor (£66), and are elected for a period of three years by electors, or directly, according to the resolution of the electoral district. If a member retires during that period, or if the chamber is dissolved, succeeding members are elected for the remainder of the three years, and thus the house is wholly renewed at regular intervals, which is not the case with the first house. The franchise was for long extremely limited in comparison with other countries, but in 1907 universal manhood suffrage was introduced, after protracted dissension and negotiation between the two houses. Eligibility to the lower house necessitates possession of the elective franchise, an age of at least 25 years, and residence within the constituency. Both chambers have in theory equal power. Before bills are discussed they may be prepared by committees, which play an important part in the work of the house. The agreement of both chambers is necessary before a bill becomes law, but when they differ on budget questions the matter is settled by a common vote of both, which arrangement gives the second chamber a certain advantage from the greater number of its members. By revisers elected annually the Riksdag controls the finances of the kingdom, and by an official (justitieombudsman) elected in the same way the administration of justice is controlled; he can indict any functionary of the state who has abused his power. The bank of the kingdom is superintended by trustees elected by the Riksdag, and in the same way the public debt is administered through an office (riksgäldskontoret), whose head is appointed by the Riksdag.
Local Government.—For the purposes of local government Sweden is divided into 25 administrative districts called län, a list of which is given in the paragraph dealing with population. The elected representative body in each is the landsthing, which deliberates on the affairs of the län and has a right to levy taxes. The chief official of the län is the landshöfding, under whom are secretarial and fiscal departments. Privileged towns, receiving their privileges from the government (not necessarily on the basis of population), are under a mayor (borgmästare) and aldermen (rådmän), the aldermen being elected by the citizens, while the mayor is appointed by the government from the first three aldermen on the poll, is paid, and holds office for life. Gothenburg has two mayors, and the city of Stockholm (q.v.), a län in itself, has a special form of government. The major rural divisions are the fögderier, under bailiffs, a subdivision of which is the länsmansdistrikt under a länsman.
Justice.—Justice is administered by tribunals of three instances. (1) There are 119 rural judicial districts (domsagor), which may be subdivided into judicial divisions (tingslag). Each tingslag has a court (häradsrätt), consisting of a judge and twelve unpaid assessors (nämndemän), of whom seven form a quorum, elected by the people. These, if unanimously of a different opinion to the judge, can outvote him. The town-courts in the privileged towns are called rädstufvurätter, and consist of the mayor and at least two aldermen. (2) There are three higher courts (hofrätter), in Stockholm, Jönköping and Kristianstad. (3) The Supreme Court (Högsta Domstolen) passes sentences in the name of the king, who is nominally the highest judicial authority. The court has a membership of 18 justices (justitieråd), two of whom are present in the council of state when law questions are to be settled; while the body also gives opinion upon all proposed changes of law.
Army and Navy.—General military service is enforced. Every Swedish man belongs to the conscripts (värnpligtige) between the age of 21 and 40, during which time he serves eight years in the first levy, four in the second, and eight in the reserves. The conscripts were formerly trained for 90 days, but according to the law of 1901, the conscript is bound to serve in time of peace—in the infantry, position artillery, fortress artillery, fortress engineers, and the army service corps a total of 240 days; and in the cavalry, field artillery, field engineers, and field telegraph corps a total of 365 days. The permanent cadres number about 22,000, and about 85,000 men are annually trained as recruits or recalled for further training. The organization of the army in time of peace is as follows: 82 battalions of infantry (28 regiments), 50 squadrons of cavalry, 71 field artillery and 7 position artillery batteries, 10 fortress artillery, 16 engineer, and 18 army service corps companies. There are six divisions, quartered at Helsingborg, Linköping, Sköfde, Stockholm (two), and Hernösand; in addition to the Gotland troops quartered at Visby. A division in time of war would probably consist of 2 battalions of infantry (4 regiments, 12 battalions), with 4 squadrons of cavalry, 1 artillery regiment, 1 company of engineers, &c. A cavalry division would consist of 2 brigades of 8 squadrons each, and 1 brigade of horse artillery. It is estimated that 500,000 men are available for service in the various capacities in case of war. There are fortresses at Stockholm (Vaxholm and Oscar-Fredriksborg), Boden on the northern railway near the Russian frontier, Karlsborg on Lake Vetter, and Karlskrona; and there are forts at Gothenburg and on Gotland. The reforms of 1901 abolished the indelta, a body including both infantry and cavalry who lived in various parts of the country, in some cases having their houses provided for them. This peculiar system of military tenure (indelningsverket) originated in the 17th century, when certain landowners were exempt from other military obligations if they provided and maintained armed men. The navy is small, including 11 ironclads of 3100 to 3650 tons. The personnel consists of a cadre, reserve and about 17,000 conscripts. It also includes two coast-artillery regiments, with headquarters at Vaxholm and Karlskrona. The principal naval station is Karlskrona, and there is another at Stockholm.
Religion.—More than 99% of the total population belong to the Swedish Lutheran Church, of which the king is the supreme head. Sweden is divided into 12 dioceses and 186 deaneries, the head of the diocese of Upsala being archbishop. The parish is an important unit in secular as well as ecclesiastical connexions. The rector presides over the local school board, which is appointed by the church assembly (kyrkostämman), and thus an intimate relation between the church and education has long been maintained. A peculiar duty of the clergy is found in the husförhör or meetings designed to enable the priest to test and develop the religious knowledge of his parishioners by methods of catechism. It was formerly enjoined upon the clergy to visit parishioners for this purpose, and the system is still maintained in the form of meetings, which have in some cases, however, acquired a character mainly devotional. The parishes number 2556, but one living may include more than one parish. In the sparsely inhabited districts of the north the parish is sometimes of enormous extent, thus that of Gellivara has an area of about 6500 sq. m. In such cases the priest often makes protracted journeys from farm to farm through his parish, and on certain occasions the congregation at his church will include many, both Swedes and Lapps, who have travelled perhaps for several days in order to be present. Dissenters are bound to contribute to the maintenance of the Swedish Church, in consideration of the secular duties of the priests.
Education.—The connexion between the church and education is so close that the control of both, is vested in a single department of the government. Primary education is carried on in common schools of different grades, under both local and state inspection, the parish being the school district. Seminaries are maintained for common school teachers, with a four years’ course. At Haparanda and Mattisudden in Norbotten there are special institutions for teachers for the Finnish and Lapp population respectively. Wide attention was attracted to Swedish educational methods principally by the introduction of the system of Sloyd (slöjd), initiated at the Nääs seminary near Gothenburg, and concerned with the teaching of manual occupations, both for boys and for girls. The higher education of the people is provided by people’s high schools in the rural districts, especially for the peasantry, maintained by the county councils, agricultural societies and the state, and providing a two years’ course both in general education and in special practical subjects according to local needs. The men’s course is held in winter; and a women’s course, in some instances, in summer. The workmen’s institutes in the towns have a similar object. A system of university extension has been developed on the English pattern, summer courses being held at Upsala and Lund. In connexion with the army reform of 1901 a system of army high schools was proposed for conscripts while serving. Technical education is provided in higher schools at Stockholm, Gothenburg and certain other large industrial centres; and in lower schools distributed throughout the country, in which special attention is given to the prevailing local industries. The agricultural and forest schools have been mentioned in the paragraphs on these subjects. Public schools for boys are provided by the state, each bishop being superintendent (eforus) of those in his diocese. In the three lowest classes (out of a total of nine) a single system of instruction is practised; thereafter there are classical and scientific sides. Greek is taught only in a section of the upper classical classes. Of modern languages, German is taught throughout; English in all classes of the scientific side, and the upper classical classes. Much attention is paid to singing, drill and gymnastics. The school terms together occupy 34½ weeks in the year. At the schools examinations are held for entrance to the universities and certain higher special schools. Owing to the high development of state public schools, private schools for boys are few; but higher schools For girls are all private, excepting the higher seminary for teachers and the state normal school at Stockholm. The state universities are at Upsala and Lund, and with these ranks the Caroline Medical Institution at Stockholm. There are universities (founded by private individual benefactions, but under state control) at Stockholm and Gothenburg. The faculties at Upsala and Lund are theology, law, medicine and philosophy (including both art and science). The courses are long, ranging from six to nine years; and the degrees are those of candidate, licentiate and doctor. The students, who are distinguished by their white caps, are divided for social purposes into “nations” (landskap) of ancient origin, based upon the distinctions between natives of different parts.
Scientific Institutions.—Among the scientific and literary societies are to be noted the Swedish Academy, consisting of 18 members, which was instituted in 1786 by Gustavus III., after the pattern of the Académie Française, for the cultivation of the Swedish language and literature; and the Academy of Science, founded in 1739 by Linnaeus and others for the promotion of the natural sciences. The first distributes one and the second two of the prizes of the Nobel Foundation. A fourth prize is distributed by the Caroline Institution at Stockholm. There may be mentioned further the Royal Academies of Literature, History and Antiquities (1786), of Agriculture (1811), of Arts (1735) and of Music (1771). The principal museums and art and other collections are in Stockholm, Upsala and Lund, and Gothenburg. The Royal Library in the Humlegard Park at Stockholm, and the university libraries at Upsala and Lund are entitled to receive a copy of every publication printed in the kingdom. Certain of the large towns have excellent public libraries, and parish libraries are widely distributed.
See Sweden, its People and its Industry, a government publication (ed. G. Sundbärg) dealing with the land and people in every aspect (Eng. vers., Stockholm, 1904); Bidrag till Sveriges officiela statistik (Stockholm, 1857 seq.); Statistisk Tidskrift, periodically from 1862; Publications (year-book, guides, &c.) of the Svenska Turistföreningen (Swedish Touring Club) Stockholm; periodical Bulletin of the Geological Institute of Upsala University, in which may be noted K. Ahlenius, Beiträge zur Kenntniss der Seenkettenregion in Schwedisch-Lappland, No. v. (1900); Also Dahlman, Inledning til Sveriges physikalska geografi (Stockholm, 1857); Statistiskt Lexicon ofrer Sverige (Stockholm, 1859–1870); M. Höjer, Konungariket Sverige (Stockholm, 1875–1883); C. Almqvist, La Suède, ses progrès sociaux (Stockholm, 1879); P. B. Du Chaillu, The Land of the Midnight Sun (London, 1881); C. M. Rosenberg, Geografiskt-statistiskt handlexicon öfrer Sverige (Stockholm, 1882–1883); W. W. Thomas, Sweden and the Swedes (Chicago and New York, 1891); Healey, Educational Systems of Sweden, Norway and Denmark (London, 1893); Nystrom, Handbok Sveriges geografi (Stockholm, 1895), and Sveriges rike (Stockholm, 1902); G. Andersson, Geschichte der Vegetation Schwedens (Leipzig, 1896); K. Ahlenius, Sverige, geografisk, topografisk, statistisk beskrifning (Stockholm); and for geology, A. G. Nathorst, Sveriges geologi (Stockholm). For more detailed accounts of the various districts see the publications of the Sveriges Geologiska Undersökning, and also the volumes of the Geologiska Föreningens i Stockholm Förhandlingar. (O. J. R. H.)
Remains dating from the Stone Age are found scattered over the southern half of Sweden, but it is only along the south coast and in the districts bordering on the Cattegat that they occur in any considerable quantity. The antiquities of the Bronze Age are much more widely distributed and reach as far as the north of Helsingland. It is evident that the country must at this time have been fairly populous. So far as can be judged from the human remains found the population in general in both the Stone and Bronze Ages seems to have been similar in type to that of the present day, and there is no clear evidence for the advent of a new race. The Iron Age probably began in the south of Sweden at any rate some three or four centuries before the beginning of the Christian era. (See further Scandinavian Civilization.)
The first historical notice relating to Sweden is contained in
Tacitus, Germania, cap. 44. This book was probably published
in A.D. 98 or 99 and in the passage mentioned we find the
name of the chief people of the peninsula, the
Swedes proper, Suiones (O. N. Sviar, Swed. Svear, A. S. Sweon), who eventually gave their
and Divisions. name to the whole country. According to Tacitus they were governed by a king whose power was absolute and comprehensive, and possessed a strong fleet which secured them from the fear of hostile incursions. Hence arms were not borne in times of peace but stored away under charge of a slave, and Tacitus suggests in explanation that the royal policy did not commit this trust to noble, freeman or freedman. Their original territories lay on both sides of the Mälar, in the provinces later known as Upland, Södermanland and Westmanland. Tacitus mentions another tribe, the Sitones, which he places next to the Suiones, but they have not been identified, and it is not clear from his description whether they lived within the peninsula or not. The only information he gives about them is that they were ruled over by a woman. Other early Roman writers, Mela and Pliny, mention the country under the name Scandinavia (Skåne), a name which in native records seems always to have been confined to the southernmost district in the peninsula. Little information, however, is given by these authorities with regard to the inhabitants.
The people next in importance to the Suiones in the peninsula (Swed. Götar, O. N. Gautar, A. S. Geatas) are first mentioned by Ptolemy (under the form Goutai for Gautoi), together with a number of other tribal names, most of which unfortunately cannot be identified, owing to the corrupt state of the text. Ptolemy puts the Götar in the southern part of the country, and from the earliest historical times their name has been given to the whole region between the Cattegat and the Baltic, exclusive of the provinces of Halland and Skåne which down to the 17th century always belonged to Denmark. The coast of the Cattegat north of the Göta Elv was reckoned in Norway. Götaland consisted of the provinces of Vestergötland and Östergötland divided from one another by Lake Vetter, together with Småland. In early times Vestergötland seems to have been by far the most important.
Vermland, the district to the north of Lake Vener and the whole of the country to the north of Svealand seem to have been of small importance. Jämtland was always considered a part of Norway. After the time of Ptolemy we Account of Jordanes. hear no more of Sweden until the 6th century, when a surprisingly full account of its peoples is given by the Gothic historian Jordanes. He mentions both the Svear (Swethans) and the Götar together with other peoples, the names of several of which can be recognized in the district—names of later times, in spite of the numerous corruptions of the text. He praises the horses of the Svear and speaks of their great trade in furs of arctic animals which were transferred from merchant to merchant until they reached Rome. About the other peoples of Sweden he gives a few details, chiefly of physical or moral characteristics, commenting upon the warlike nature of the Visigauti, the mildness of the Finns, the lofty stature of the Vinovii and the meat and egg diet of the Rerefennae. Jordanes's statement regarding the prevalence of trade with Sweden is corroborated by the fact that many coins and bracteates of the period have been found in the country. Of these the coins are chiefly Roman and Byzantine gold pieces of the 5th century, the bracteates copies of Roman coins of the same period.
Procopius, the contemporary of Jordanes (Gothica, ii. 15) likewise gives an account of Sweden, which he calls Thule, but the only tribes which he names are the Skrithephinnoi Beowolf. (A. S. Scriðefinnas), a wild people of Finnish stock, and the Götar (Gautoi) whom he describes as a “nation abounding in men.” For the same period we derive a considerable amount of information with regard to Swedish affairs from the Anglo-Saxon poem Beowulf. The hero himself belonged to the Greatas (i.e. in all probability Götar, though the identification is disputed by some scholars), his mother being the daughter of their king Hrethel. Haethcyn, the son and successor of this Hrethel, is said to have perished in a disastrous battle against the Svear, but his fall was avenged by his brother Hygelac in a subsequent engagement in which the Swedish king Ongentheow was killed. This Hygelac is clearly identical with that Chochilaicus wrongly described as a Danish king by Gregory of Tours (iii. 5) who made a piratical expedition to the lower Rhine which ended in his defeat and death in a battle with the Franks under Theodberht about A.D. 520. The poem contains several allusions to this disaster. We learn further that about the time of Hygelac's death strife broke out in the royal family of the Svear, between Onela, the son and successor of Ongentheow, and Eanmund and Eadgils, the sons of his brother Ohthere. The latter fled for protection to the Götar and the war which ensued cost the lives of Eanmund and of Heardred the son and successor of Hygelac. According to the poem Beowulf himself now became king of the Götar and assisted Eadgils in a campaign which resulted in the death of Onela and the acquisition of the throne by his nephew. What is said in the poem with regard to the end of Beowulf belongs to the realm of myth, and for three centuries after this time we have no reference to Swedish affairs in English or other foreign authorities. Moreover after the time of Beowulf and Jordanes there are very few references to the kingdom of the Götar and in Olaf Sköttkonung's time it was merely an earldom. The kingdom must have come to an end between the 6th and 10th centuries A.D., and probably quite early in that period.
The Ynglingatal, a poem said to have been composed by Thioðolfr of Hvín, court-poet of Harold Fairhair, king of Norway, he gives a genealogy of Harold's family, which it carries back to the early kings of the Svear. Snorri The Ynglingatals and Ynglinga Saga. Sturluson (1178-1241) the Icelandic author using this poem as a basis and amplifying it from other sources, wrote the Ynglinga Saga, which traces back the history of the family, generation by generation, to its beginning. In this saga Aðils (the Eadgils of Beowulf), son of Ottarr is one of the most prominent figures. The account given of him agrees in general with the statements in Beowulf, though the nature of his relations with Ali (Onela) has been misunderstood. The decisive battle between the two kings is said to have taken place on the frozen surface of Lake Wener. Ongentheow appears to have been entirely forgotten in Norse tradition and his place is taken by a certain Egill. The saga further states that Aðils was an enthusiastic horse-breeder and that he met with his death through a fall from his horse. This point is of interest in connexion with the notice of Jordanes, mentioned above, with regard to the horses of the Svear. Other northern authorities such as Saxo and the Hrolfs Saga Kraka represent Aðils in a very unfavourable light as niggardly and addicted to sorcery.
The Ynglingatal and Ynglinga Saga enumerate Aðil's ancestors to no less than seventeen generations, with short accounts of each. We have no means of checking the genealogy from other sources, and the majority of the characters are probably to be regarded as mythical. The origin of the family is traced to the god Frey, son of Niörðr, who is said to have founded Upsala, the ancient capital of Sweden. His reign is represented as a golden age of peace and prosperity and the great wealth of the sanctuary is said to have taken its beginning from the offerings at his tomb. His full name appears to have been Yngvifreyr or Ingunar Freyr and his descendants are collectively termed Ynglingar, though we also occasionally meet with the name Skilfingar, which corresponds with the name Scilfingar borne by the Swedish royal family in Beowulf.
After the time of Aðils the Ynglingar remained in possession of Upsala for four generations according to the saga. Ultimately the treachery and the murderous disposition of the king named Ingialdr led to his overthrow by a prince from Skåne, called Ivarr Viðfaðmi. His son Olafr Trételgia withdrew to Vermland, which he brought into a state of cultivation, though he was subsequently sacrificed by his subjects in a time of famine. It is stated in the saga that the Swedish kings were believed to have control over the seasons like their ancestor, the god Frey, and traces of this belief seem to have lingered in the country down to the times of Gustavus Vasa. The sons of Olafr Trételgia moved westward into Norway, and if we may trust the saga, the Swedish kingdom never again came into the possession of their family.
The subsequent kings of Sweden are said to have been descended from Ivarr Viðfaðmi. The most prominent figures in this family are Haraldr Hilditönn Ivarr's grandson and his Introduction of Christianity. nephew Sigurðr Hringr. The story of the battle between these two at Bråvik, in which Haraldr lost his life, is one of the most famous in northern literature. But the position of these kings with regard to Sweden is far from clear. Their home is probably to be placed on the Cattegat rather than on the Baltic. The same is true also of Ragnarr Loðbrók, who is said to have been the son of Sigurðr Hringr. About the year 830 the missionary bishop Ansgar made his first expedition to Sweden. He made his way to Birca on the Mälar. The king whom he found reigning there is called Björn (Bern) and is generally identified with the king Björn for whom Bragi the Old composed the poem called Ragnarsdrápa. On his subsequent journeys to Sweden Ansgar encountered kings called Olafr and Önundr. He appears to have met with considerable immediate success in his missionary enterprises, although there is no evidence to show that the churches he founded long survived his death, and no serious mission seems to have been attempted for more than a century afterwards.
During the 9th century extensive Scandinavian settlements were made on the east side of the Baltic, and even as early as the reign of Louis I. we hear of piratical Scandinavian Settlements in Russia. expeditions on the Black Sea and on the Caspian. The famous expeditions of Rurik and Askold which resulted in the origin of the Russian monarchy appear to have taken place towards the middle of the 9th century, but it has not been found possible to connect these names with any families known to us from Swedish tradition. Proofs of extensive Scandinavian settlement in Russia are to be found partly in the Russian names assigned to the Dnieper rapids by Constantine Porphyrogenitus, partly in references to this people made by foreign representatives at the court of Byzantium. The fact that many of the names which occur in Russian chronicles seem to be peculiarly Swedish suggests that Sweden was the home of the settlers, and the best authorities consider that the original Scandinavian conquerors were Swedes who had settled on the east coast of the Baltic.
In the time of Harold Fairhair, probably about the beginning of the 10th century, we hear of a king named Eric the son of Emund at Upsala, whose authority seems to have Kings in the 10th Century. reached as far as Norway. Later in the century there is record of a king named Björn á Haugi who is said to have been the son of Eric and to have reigned fifty years. Björn's sons and successors were Olaf and Eric the Victorious. Styrbiörn Starki, the son of Olaf, being refused his share of the government by Eric after his father's death, made himself a stronghold at Jomsborg in Pomerania and spent some years in piratical expeditions. Eventually he betook himself to Harold Bluetooth, then king of Denmark, and endeavoured to secure his assistance in gaining the Swedish throne by force of arms. Although he failed in this attempt he was not deterred from attacking Eric, and a battle took place between the two at the Fyriså (close to Upsala) in which Styrbiörn was defeated and killed. Eric himself died ten years after this battle, apparently about 993. According to the story he had obtained victory from Odin in return for a promise to give himself up at the end of ten years. Under his son and successor Olaf, surnamed Sköttkonung, Christianity was fully established in Establishment of Christianity. Sweden. Olaf Tryggvason, the king of Norway, had married his sister Ingibiörg to Ragnvald, earl of Vestergötland, on condition that he should receive baptism, and the Swedish king's wife was also a Christian, though he himself was not baptized until 1008 by Sigfrid at Husaby. A quarrel arose in the last years of the 10th century between Olaf Sköttkonung and Olaf Tryggvason. The latter had applied for the hand of Sigrið, the widow of Eric the Victorious, but had insulted her on her refusal to become a Christian. In the year 1000, when the Norwegian king was in Pomerania, a coalition was formed between the king of Sweden, Sweyn Forkbeard, king of Denmark, and earl Eric of Lade, and the allies waylaid their enemy off the coast near Rügen and overthrew him in the great sea-battle of Svolder. Under Reign of Olaf Sköttkonung. Sköttkonung Sweden became the mightiest of the kingdoms of the north, in spite of the king's own inactivity. She lost her lands east of the Baltic, but received as compensation in Norway part of Trondhjem and the district now called Bohüslan. These lands Olaf handed over to Earl Sweyn, brother of Earl Eric (whose father Haakon had governed Norway), as a marriage portion for his daughter Holmfrið. Some years later we hear of hostilities between Olaf Sköttkonung and another Norwegian prince, Olaf Haraldsson (the Fat), who raided Sweden and was besieged in the Mälar by the Swedish king. In 1014, the year of Earl Eric's departure to England with Canute, Olaf Haraldsson, returning to Norway as king, put an end to the Swedish and Danish supremacy, and in 1015 he forced Earl Sweyn to leave the country. Trifling border-quarrels followed, but in 1017 a truce was arranged between Norway and Vestergötland, where Earl Ragnvald was still in power. Olaf of Norway now sent his marshal Bjorn to Ragnvald to arrange a peace. Ragnvald brought him to a great assembly at Upsala in February 1018. At this meeting Björn, supported by the earl, asked for peace, and Olaf was compelled by the pressure of the lawman Thorgny to agree to this and also to promise his daughter Ingegerð in marriage to the Norse king. The marriage, however, never got beyond the betrothal stage, and at Earl Ragnvald's suggestion Astrid, her half-sister, was substituted, contrary to the will of Olaf Sköttkonung. Such was the anger of the king that Ragnvald was forced to accompany Ingegerð to Russia, where she was married to the grand-duke Jaroslav at Novgorod. In Sweden, however, both the Vestgötar and the Upland Sviar were discontented, the former on account of the breaking of the king's promise to Olaf of Norway and the latter on account of the introduction of the new religion, and their passions were further inflamed by the lawman Anund of Skara. A rising in Upland compelled Olaf to share his power with his son Jacob, whose name was changed to Anund by the leaders of the revolt. A meeting was then arranged between the kings of Norway and Sweden at Kongelf in 1019, and this resulted in a treaty. The death of Olaf Sköttkonung is assigned by Snorri Sturluson to the winter of 1021-1022. His grave is still shown at Husaby in Vestergötland.
Anund, now sole king, early in his reign allied himself with Olaf Haraldsson against Canute of Denmark, who had demanded the restitution of the rights possessed by his father King Anund, c. 1022-c. 1050. Sweyn in Norway. The allies took advantage of the Danish king's absence to harry his land. On his return an indecisive battle was fought at Helgi Å, and Anund returned to Sweden. Olaf was driven from Norway by the Danes, but returning in 1030 he raised a small army in Sweden and marched through Jämtland to Trondhjem only to meet his death at the battle of Stiklestad. After death he was worshipped in Sweden, especially in Götland. We hear from Adam of Bremen that Anund was young in years but old in wisdom and cunning; he was called Kolbrännea because he had the houses of evildoers burnt. Like Olaf Sköttkonung he caused coins to be struck at Sigtuna, of which a few remain. The moneyers' names are English. The coins of Anund surpass all that were struck during the next two centuries. He appears to have died about 1050, according to Adam of Bremen. He was succeeded by his brother Emund the Old, who Emund the Old, 1050-1060. had been previously passed over because, his mother was unfree, the daughter of a Slav prince and captured in war. This king had become a Christian, but soon quarrelled with Adalhard, archbishop of Bremen, and endeavoured to secure the independence of the Swedish church, which was not obtained for another century. Emund, who was given the name Slemme, had territorial disputes with Denmark in the early part of his reign. These disputes were settled by a rectification of boundaries which assigned Blekinge to Denmark.
With the death of Emund, which took place in 1060, the old family of Swedish kings dies out. The successor of Emund the Old was a king named Steinkel who had married Steinkel, 1060-1066. the daughter of his predecessor. He was the son of a certain Ragnvald, perhaps connected with the Vestergötland Ragnvald, of the reign of Olaf Sköttkonung. Steinkel was born in Vestergötland and was warmly attached to the Christian religion. The Adalhard who had quarrelled with Emund the Old now sent a bishop, Adalhard the younger, to Scara. Christianity was by this time firmly established throughout most of Sweden, its chief strength being in Vestergötland. The Uplanders, however, still held out against it, and Adalhard, though he succeeded in destroying the idols in his own district Vestergötland, was unable to persuade Steinkel to destroy the old sanctuary at Upsala. During his reign grants of land in Vermland made by the king to the Norse earl Haakon Ivarsson led to a successful invasion of Götaland by Harold Hardrada of Norway. Steinkel also had disputes with Denmark. On his death in 1066 a civil war broke out in which the leaders were two obscure princes named Eric. Probably the division of feeling between Vestergötland and Upland in the matter of religion was the real cause of this war, but nothing is known of the details, though we hear that both kings as well as the chief men of the land fell in it.
A prince called Haakon the Red now appears as king of Sweden and is said to have occupied the throne for thirteen years. In the Vestergötland regnal lists he appears Haakon the Red, 1066-1979? before Steinkel and it is possible that the authority that king was not regularly acknowledged in the province. In 1081 we find the sons of Steinkel, Inge and Halstan, reigning in Sweden. Inge's attachment to Christianity caused him to be expelled after a short time by Halstan, Inge and Blotsweyn his brother-in-law Sweyn or Blotsweyn, so called from his revival of the old sacrifices. Sweyn retained the kingship only for three years. After that interval Inge returned and slew him, and his fall marks the final overthrow of the old religion.
The interesting account of Upsala preserved by Adam of Bremen in his History (iv. 26) apparently dates from the period immediately preceding these events. He describes the temple as one of great splendour and covered with gilding. Temple at Upsala. In it stood the statues of the three chief deities Thor, Odin and Fricco (by whom he probably means Frey). Every nine years a great festival was held there to which embassies were sent by all the peoples of Sweden. A large number of animals and even men were sacrificed on such occasions. In the neighbourhood of the temple was a grove of peculiar sanctity in which the bodies of the victims were hung up. After the introduction of Christianity the importance of Upsala began steadily to decline, and owing to its intimate associations with the old religion the kings no longer made it their residence.
Authorities for Early History.—Tacitus, Germania, cap. 44; Claudius Ptolemaeus, Geographica ii. 11 ad fin.; Jordanes, De origine actibusque Getarum, cap. 3; Procopius, De bello gothico, ii. 15; Beowulf, Rimbertus, Vita S. Ansgarii in monumenta Germaniae historica, ii. 683-725 (Hanover, 1829); King Alfred's translation of Orosius i. 1; Adam of Bremen, Gesta hammaburgensis ecclesiae pontificum iii. and iv.; Ynglinga Saga, with the poem Ynglingatal contained in the Heimskringla; Olafs Sagan Tryggvasonar and Olafs Saga hins Helga, both contained in Heimskringla and in Fornmanna sögur; Saxo grammaticus, gesta Danorum; a collection of later Swedish Chronicles contained in Rerum suecicarum scriptores, vol. iii. (ed. Annerstedt, Upsala, 1871 and 1876); Sveriges historia, vol. i. (Montelius & Hildebrand, Stockholm, 1875–1877); Thomsen, The Relations between Ancient Russia and Scandinavia and the Origin of the Russian State (Oxford and London, 1877). (F. G. M. B.)
Under Blotsweyn's grandson, King Sverker (1134–1155),
who permanently amalgamated the Swedes and Goths (each
of the two nations supplying the common king
alternately for the next hundred years), Sweden
began to feel the advantage of a centralized monarchical
the Kingdom. government. Eric IX. (1150–1160) organized the Swedish Church on the model prevalent elsewhere, and undertook a crusade against the heathen Finlanders, which marks the beginning of Sweden's overseas dominion. Under Charles VII., the archbishopric of Upsala was founded (1164). But the greatest medieval statesman of Sweden was Earl Birger, who practically ruled the land from 1248 to 1266. To him is attributed the foundation of Stockholm; but he is best known as a legislator, and his wise reforms prepared the way for the abolition of serfdom. The increased dignity which the royal power owed to Earl Birger was still further extended by King Magnus Ladulås (1275–1290). Both these rulers, by the institution of separate and almost independent duchies, attempted to introduce into Sweden a feudal system similar to that already established elsewhere in Europe; but the danger of thus weakening the realm by partition was averted, though not without violent and tragic complications. Finally, in 1319, the severed portions of Sweden were once more reunited. Separation of
Nobles and Burghers. Meanwhile the political development of the state was of the steadily proceeding. The formation of separate orders, or estates, was promoted by Magnus Ladulås, who extended the privileges of the clergy and founded an hereditary nobility (Ordinance of Alsnö, 1280). In connexion with this institution we now hear of a heavily armed cavalry as the kernel of the national army. The knights too now became distinguishable from the higher nobility. To this period belongs the rise of a prominent burgess class, as the towns now began to acquire charters. At the end of the 13th century, and the beginning of the 14th too, provincial codes of laws appear and the king and his council execute legislative functions.
The first union between Sweden and Norway occurred in 1319,
when the three-year-old Magnus, son of the Swedish royal duke
Eric and of the Norwegian princess Ingeborg,
who had inherited the throne of Norway from his
grandfather Haakon V., was in the same year elected
First Union with Norway.
king of Sweden (Convention of Oslo). A long minority weakened
the royal influence in both countries, and Magnus lost both his
kingdoms before his death. The Swedes, irritated by his misrule,
superseded him by his nephew, Albert of Mecklenburg (1365).
In Sweden, Magnus's partialities and necessities led directly
to the rise of a powerful landed aristocracy, and, indirectly,
to the growth of popular liberties. Forced by the unruliness
of the magnates to lean upon the middle classes, the king summoned
(1359) the first Swedish Riksdag, on which occasion
representatives from the towns were invited to appear along
with the nobles and clergy. His successor, Albert, was forced
to go a step farther and, in 1371, to take the first Coronation
oath. In 1388, at the request of the Swedes themselves, Albert
Kalmar, 1397. was driven out by Margaret, regent of Denmark and Norway; and, at a convention of the representatives of the three Scandinavian kingdoms held at Kalmar (1397), Margaret's great-nephew, Eric of Pomerania, was elected the common king, but the liberties of each of the three realms were expressly reserved and confirmed. The union was to be a personal, not a political union.
Neither Margaret herself nor her successors observed the
stipulation that in each of the three kingdoms only natives
should hold land and high office, and the efforts
of Denmark (at that time by far the strongest
member of the union) to impose her will on
Breach of the
Union, 1436. weaker kingdoms soon produced a rupture, or, rather, a series of semi-ruptures. The Swedes first broke away from it in 1434 under the popular leader Engelbrecht, and after his murder they elected Karl Knutsson Bonde their king under the title of Charles VIII. (1436). In 1441 Charles VIII. had to retire in favour of Christopher of Bavaria, who was already king of Denmark and Norway; but, on the death of Christopher (1448), a state of confusion ensued in the course of which Charles VIII. was twice expelled and twice reinstated. Finally, on his death in 1470, the three kingdoms were reunited under Christian I. of Denmark, the prelates and higher nobility of Sweden being favourable to the union, though the great majority of the Swedish people always detested it as a foreign usurpation. The national party was represented by the three great Riksföreståndare, or presidents of the realm, of the Sture family (see Sture), who, with brief intervals, from 1470 to 1520 successively defended the independence of Sweden against the Danish kings and kept the national spirit alive. But the presidentship Election of Gustavus Vasa, 1523. was too casual and anomalous an institution to rally the nations round it permanently, and when the tyranny of Christian II. (q.v.) became intolerable the Swedish people elected Gustavus Eriksson Vasa, who as president had already driven out the Danes (see Denmark: History), king of Sweden at Strengnäs (June 6, 1523).
The extraordinary difficulties of Gustavus (see Gustavus I.)
were directly responsible for the eccentric development, both
political and religious, of the new kingdom which
his genius created. So precarious was the position
of the young king, that he was glad to make allies
1523–1560. wherever he could find them. Hence his desire to stand well with the Holy See. Only three months after his accession, he addressed letters to the pope begging him to appoint new bishops “who would defend the rights of the Church without detriment to the Crown.” He was especially urgent for the confirmation of his nominee Johannes Magni as primate, in the place of the rebellious archbishop Gustavus Trolle, who as a convicted traitor had been formally deposed by the Riksdag and was actually an outlawed exile. If the pope would confirm the elections of his bishops, Gustavus promised to be an obedient son of the Church. Scarcely had these letters been dispatched when the king received a papal bull ordering the immediate reinstatement of Gustavus Trolle. The action of the Curia on this occasion was due to its conviction of the imminent triumph of Christian II. and the instability of Gustavus's position. It was a conviction shared by the rest of Europe; but, none the less, it was another of the many blunders of the Curia at this difficult period. Its immediate effect was the loss of the Swedish Church. Gustavus could not accept as primate an open and determined traitor like Trolle. He publicly protested, in the sharpest language, that unless Johannes Magni were recognized at Rome as archbishop of Upsala, he was determined, Breach with Rome. of his own royal authority, henceforward to order the affairs of the Church in his realm to the glory of God and the satisfaction of all Christian men. But the Holy See was immovable, and Gustavus broke definitely with Rome. He began by protecting and promoting the Swedish reformers Olavus and Laurentius Petri, and Laurentius Andreae. The new teaching was allowed to spread, though at first unostentatiously and gradually. A fresh step in the direction of Lutheranism Progress of the Reformation. was the translation of the New Testament into Swedish, which was published in 1526. Simultaneously, a systematic attack was made upon the religious houses, beginning with the sequestration of the monastery of Gripsholm in January 1526. But the affair caused such general indignation that Gustavus felt obliged, in May, to offer some justification of his conduct. A few months later there was an open rupture between the king and his own primate, who ultimately was frightened into exile by a sudden accusation of treason. But the other bishops were also against Gustavus, and, irritated by their conscientious opposition, the king abandoned the no longer tenable position of a moderator and came openly forward as an antagonist. In 1526 the Catholic printing-presses were suppressed, and two-thirds of the Church's tithes were appropriated to the payment of the national debt. On the 18th of February 1527 two bishops, the first martyrs of Catholicism in Sweden, were gibbeted at Stockholm after a trial which was a parody of justice. This act of violence, evidently designed to terrorize the Church into submission, was effectual enough, for at the subsequent Riksdag of Vesterås (June, 1527), the bishops durst not even present a protest which they had privately prepared, and the assembly Recess and Ordinance of Vesterås, 1527. itself was bullied into an absolute submission to the royal will. The result was the Vesterås Recess which transferred all ecclesiastical property to the Crown. By the subsequent Vesterås Ordinance the Swedish Church was absolutely severed from Rome. Nevertheless, the changes so made were mainly administrative. There was no modification of doctrine, for the general resolution that God's Word should be preached plainly and purely was not contrary to the teaching of the ante-Tridentine Church. Even at the synod of Örebro, summoned in February 1529, “for the better regulation of church ceremonies and discipline according to God's Word,” there was no formal protest against Rome; and the old ritual was retained for two years longer, though it was to be explained as symbolical. Henceforth the work of the Reformation continued uninterruptedly. In 1531 Laurentius Petri was elected the first Protestant primate of Sweden. Subsequently matters were much complicated by the absolutist tendencies of Gustavus. From 1539 onwards there was a breach between him and his own prelates in consequence of his arbitrary appropriation of the Church's share of the tithes, in direct violation of the Vesterås Recess. Then Gustavus so curtailed the power of the bishops (ordinances of 1539 and 1540) that they had little of the dignity left but the name, and even that he was disposed to abolish, for after 1543 the prelates appointed by him, without any pretence of previous election by the cathedral chapters, were called ordinaries, or superintendents. Finally, at the Riksdag of Vesterås, in 1544, though no definite confession of faith was formulated, a final breach was made with the traditions of the old religion.
Thus the Reformation in Sweden was practically the work of one strong man, acting (first from purely political and latterly from purely economical reasons) for the good of the state as he understood it. In this Gustavus acted contrary to the religious instincts of the vast majority of the Swedish nation; for there can be no doubt at all that the Swedes at the beginning of the 16th century were not only still devoted to the old Church, but violently anti-Protestant. This popular Romanism was the greatest of all Gustavus's difficulties, because it tended to alienate the Swedish peasants.
For the last hundred years the peasants had been a leading factor in the political life of the land; and perhaps in no other contemporary European state could so self-reliant The Peasants. a class of yeomen have been found. Again and again they had defended their own and the national liberties against foreign foes. In the national assemblies, too, their voice had always been powerful, and not infrequently predominant. In a word, they were the sound kernel of the still but partially developed Swedish constitution, the democratic safeguard against the monarchical tendency which was enveloping the rest of Europe. Gustavus's necessities had compelled him to break with the ecclesiastical traditions of Sweden; and they also compelled him, contrary to his masterful disposition, to accept constitutionalism, because without it his footing in his own kingdom would have been insecure. The peasants therefore were his natural allies, but, from the nature of the case, they tended to become his most formidable rivals. They prided themselves on having “set King Gus in the high seat,” but they were quite ready to unseat him if his rule was not to their liking, and there were many things with which they were by no means contented. This anomalous state of things was responsible for the half-dozen peasant risings with which Gustavus had to contend from 1525 to 1543. In all these rebellions the religious difficulty figured largely, though the increasing fiscal burdens were undoubtedly grievous and the peasants had their particular grievances besides. The wholesale seizure and degradation of Church property outraged them, and they formally protested against the introduction of “Luthery.” They threatened, more than once, to march upon and destroy Stockholm, because the Reformers had made of it “a spiritual Sodom.” They insisted on the restoration of the ancient Catholic customs, and would have made neglect of fasting and other sins of omission penal offences. Though he prevailed in the end, Gustavus was obliged to humour the people throughout. And thus, though he was strong enough to maintain what he had established and finish what he had begun, he was not strong enough to tamper seriously with the national liberties or to crush altogether Catholic aspirations. At the time of his death the Riksdag was already a power in the state, and a Catholic reaction in Sweden was by no means an impossibility, if only the Catholics had been able to find capable leaders.
Gustavus's foreign policy at first aimed at little more than self-preservation. Only with the pecuniary assistance of the wealthy merchants of Lübeck had he been able to Foreign Policy of Gustavus. establish himself originally; and Lübeck, in return, had exploited Sweden, as Spain at a later day was to exploit her American colonies. When, with the aid of Denmark, Gustavus at last freed himself from this greedy incubus (see Denmark; Gustavus I.; Christian III.) by the truce of the 28th of August 1537, Sweden for the first time in her history became the mistress of her own waters. But even so she was but of subordinate importance in Scandinavian politics. The hegemony of Denmark was indisputable, and Gustavus regarded that power with an ever-increasing suspicion which augured ill for peace in the future. The chief cause of dispute was the quartering by the Danish king of the three crowns of Sweden on the Dano-Norwegian shield, which was supposed to indicate a claim of sovereignty. Still more offensive was the attitude of Sweden's eastern neighbour Muscovy, with whom the Swedish king was nervously anxious to stand on good terms. Gustavus attributed to Ivan IV., whose resources he unduly magnified, the design of establishing a universal monarchy round the Baltic.
Nevertheless events were already occurring which ultimately compelled Sweden to depart from her neutrality and lay the foundations of an overseas empire. In the last year of Gustavus's life (1560), the ancient military Expansion of Sweden. order of the Sword, amalgamated, since 1237, with the more powerful order of the Teutonic Knights, had by the secularization of the latter order into the dukedom of Prussia (1525) become suddenly isolated in the midst of hostile Slavonians. It needed but a jolt to bring down the crazy anachronism, and the jolt came when, in 1558-60, floods of Muscovites poured over the land, threatening the whole province with destruction. In his despair the last master of the order, Gotthard von Kettler, appealed to all his more civilized neighbours to save him, and his dominions were quickly partitioned between Poland, Denmark and Sweden. Sweden's original share of the spoil was Reval, which, driven to extremities, placed itself beneath the protection of the Swedish crown in March 1561. From the moment that Sweden got a firm footing in Esthonia by the acquisition of Reval she was committed to a policy of combat and aggrandisement. To have retreated would have meant the ruin of her Baltic trade, upon which the national prosperity so much depended. Her next-door neighbours, Poland and Russia, were necessarily her competitors; fortunately they were also each other's rivals; obviously her best policy was to counterpoise them. To accomplish this effectually she required to have her hands free, and the composition of her long outstanding differences with Denmark by the Treaty of Stettin on the 15th of December 1570 (see Denmark: History), which put an end to the Dano-Swedish war of 1563-1570, the chief political event of the reign of Eric XIV. (1560-1568), the eldest son and successor of Gustavus Vasa, was therefore a judicious act on the part of the new king of Sweden, John III. (1568-1592). Equally judicious was the anti-Russian league with Stephen Bathory, king of Poland, concluded in 1578. The war between Russia and Sweden for the possession of Esthonia and Livonia (1571-77) had been uninterruptedly disastrous to the latter, and, in the beginning of 1577, a countless Russian host sat down before Reval, Sweden's last stronghold in those parts. The energetic intervention of Bathory, however, speedily turned the scales in the opposite direction. Six months after his humiliating peace with the Polish monarch, Ivan IV. was glad to conclude a truce with Sweden also on a uti possidetis basis at Pliusa (Aug. 5, 1582).
The amicable relations between Sweden and Poland promised, at first, to be permanent. Sixteen years before his accession to the throne, John III., then duke of Finland, had Sweden and Poland. wedded Catherine Jagiellonica, the sister of Sigismund II., king of Poland (Oct. 4, 1562). Duke Sigismund, the fruit of this union, was brought up by his mother in the Catholic religion, and, on the 19th of August 1587, he was elected king of Poland. Sixteen days later the Articles of Kalmar, signed by John and Sigismund, regulated the future relations between the two countries when, in process of time, Sigismund should succeed his father as king of Sweden. The two kingdoms were to be in perpetual alliance, but each of them was to retain its own laws and customs. Articles of Kalmar, 1587. Sweden was also to enjoy her religion, subject to such changes as a general council might make; but neither pope nor council was to claim or exercise the right of releasing Sigismund from his obligations to his Swedish subjects. During Sigismund's absence from Sweden that realm was to be ruled by seven Swedes, six elected by the king and one by his uncle Duke Charles of Sudermania, the leader of the Swedish Protestants. No new tax was to be levied in Sweden during the king's absence, but Sweden was never to be administered from Poland. Any necessary alterations in these articles were only to be made with the common consent of the king, Duke Charles, the senate and the gentry of Sweden.
The endeavours of Swedish statesmen to bind the hands of their future king were due to their fear of the rising flood of the Catholic reaction in Europe. Under Eric XIV. Sweden and the Catholic Reaction. the Reformation in Sweden had proceeded on much the same lines as during the reign of his father, retaining all the old Catholic customs not considered contrary to Scripture. Naturally, after 1544, when the Council of Trent had formally declared the Bible and tradition to be equally authoritative sources of all Christian doctrine, the contrast between the old and the new teaching became more obvious; and in many countries a middle party arose which aimed at a compromise by going back to the Church of the Fathers. King John III., the most learned of the Vasas, and somewhat of a theological expert, was largely influenced by these “middle” views. As soon as he had mounted the throne he took measures to bring the Swedish Church back to “the primitive Apostolic Church and the John III. and the Swedish Church. Catholic faith”; and, in 1574, persuaded a synod assembled at Stockholm to adopt certain articles framed by himself on what we should call a High Church basis. In February 1575 a new Church ordinance, approximating still more closely to the patriotic Church, was presented to another synod, and accepted thereat, but very unwillingly. In 1576 a new liturgy was issued on the model of the Roman missal, but with considerable modifications. To a modern High Anglican these innovations seem innocent enough, and, despite the opposition of Duke Charles and the ultra-Protestants, they were adopted by the Riksdag of 1577. These measures greatly encouraged the Catholic party in Europe, and John III. was ultimately persuaded to send an embassy to Rome to open negotiations for the reunion of the Swedish Church with the Holy See. But though the Jesuit Antonio Possevino was sent to Stockholm to complete John's “conversion,” John would only consent to embrace Catholicism under certain conditions which were never kept, and the only result of all these subterraneous negotiations was to incense the Protestants still more against the new liturgy, the use of which by every congregation in the realm without exception was, nevertheless, decreed by the Riksdag of 1582. At this period Duke Charles and his Protestant friends were clearly outnumbered by the promoters of the via media. Nevertheless, immediately after King John's death, a synod summoned to Upsala by Duke Charles rejected the new liturgy and drew up an anti-Catholic confession of faith (March 5, 1593). Holy Scripture and the three primitive creeds were declared to be the true foundations of Christian faith, and the Augsburg Confession was adopted. That Sigismund, now the lawful Civil War. Expulsion of Sigismund. king of Sweden, should regard the summoning of the synod of Upsala without his previous knowledge and consent as a direct infringement of his prerogative was only natural. On his arrival in Sweden, however, he tried to gain time by provisionally confirming what had been done; but the aggressiveness of the Protestant faction and the persistent usurpations of Duke Charles (the Riksdag of 1595 proclaimed him regent though the king had previously refused him that office) made a civil war inevitable. The battle of Stångåbro (Sept. 25, 1598) decided the struggle in favour of Charles—and Protestantism. Sigismund fled Proclamation of Charles IX., 1600. from Sweden, never to return, and on the 19th of March 1600 the Riksdag of Linköping proclaimed the duke king under the title of Charles IX. Sigismund and his posterity were declared to have forfeited the Swedish crown which was to pass to the heirs male of Charles. Not till the 6th of March 1604, however, after Duke John, son of John III., had formally renounced his hereditary right to Proscription of Catholics. the throne, did Charles IX. begin to style himself king. At the Riksdag of the same year, the estates committed themselves irrevocably to Protestantism by excluding Catholics from the succession to the throne, and prohibiting them from holding any office or dignity in Sweden. Henceforth, too, every recusant was to be deprived of his estates and banished the realm.
It was in the reign of Charles IX. that Sweden became not only a predominantly Protestant, but also a predominantly Establishment of a Regular Army. military monarchy. This momentous change, which was to give a martial colouring to the whole policy of Sweden for the next hundred and twenty years, dates from a decree of the Riksdag of Linköping establishing, at the urgent suggestion of Charles, a regular army; each district in the country being henceforward liable to provide and maintain a fixed number of infantry and cavalry for the service of the state. The immediate enemy was Poland, now dynastically as well as territorially opposed to Sweden. The struggle took the shape of a War with Poland and Russia. contest for the possession of the northern Baltic provinces. Esthonia was recovered by the Swedes in 1600, but their determined efforts (1601-9) to gain a foothold in Livonia were frustrated by the military ability of the grand hetman of Lithuania, Jon Karol Chodkiewicz. In 1608 hostilities were transferred to Russian territory. At the beginning of that year Charles had concluded an alliance with Tsar Basil IV. (q.v.) against their common foe, the Polish king; but when, in 1611, Basil was deposed by his own subjects and the whole tsardom seemed to be on the verge of dissolution, Sweden's policy towards Russia changed its character. Hitherto Charles had aimed at supporting the weaker Slavonic power against the stronger; but now that Muscovy seemed about to disappear from among the nations of Europe, Swedish statesmen naturally sought some compensation for the expenses of the war before Poland had had time to absorb everything. A beginning was made by the siege and capture of Kexholm in Russian Finland (March 2, 1611); and, on the 16th of July, Great Novgorod was occupied and a convention concluded with the magistrates of that wealthy city whereby Charles IX.'s second son Philip was to be recognized as tsar, unless, in the meantime, relief came to Great Novgorod from Moscow. But now, when everything depended on a concentration of forces, Charles's imprudent assumption of the title of “King of the Lapps of Nordland,” which people properly belonged to the Danish Crown, War of Kalmar. involved him in another war with Denmark, a war known in Scandinavian history as the war of Kalmar because the Swedish fortress of Kalmar was the chief theatre of hostilities. Thus the Swedish forces were diverted from their real objective and transferred to another field where even victory would have been comparatively unprofitable. But it was disaster, not victory, which Charles IX. reaped from this foolhardy Peace of Knäred, 1613. enterprise. Still worse, the war of Kalmar, prudently concluded by Char1es's son, Gustavus Adolphus, in the second year of his reign, by the peace of Knäred (Jan. 20, 1613) imposed such onerous pecuniary obligations and such intense suffering upon Sweden as to enkindle into a fire of hatred, which was to burn fiercely for the next two centuries, the long smouldering antagonism between the two sister nations of Scandinavia which dated back to the bloody days of Christian II.
The Russian difficulty was more easily and more honourably adjusted. When Great Novgorod submitted provisionally to the suzerainty of Sweden, Swedish statesmen had believed, for a moment, in the creation of a Trans-baltic Peace of Stolbova, 1617. dominion extending from Lake Ilmen northwards to Archangel and eastwards to Vologda. The rallying of the Russian nation round the throne of the new tsar, Michael Romanov, dissipated, once for all, this ambitious dream. By the beginning of 1616, Gustavus had become convinced of the impossibility of partitioning reunited Muscovy, while Muscovy recognized the necessity of buying off the invincible Swedes by some cession of territory. By the Peace of Stolbova (Feb. 27, 1617), the tsar surrendered to the Swedish king the provinces of Kexholm and Ingria, including the fortress of Nöteborg (the modern Schlüsselburg), the key of Finland. Russia, furthermore, renounced all claims upon Esthonia and Livonia, and paid a war indemnity of 20,000 roubles. In return for these concessions, Gustavus restored Great Novgorod and acknowledged Michael Romanov as tsar of Muscovy.
The same period which saw the extension of the Swedish
Empire abroad, saw also the peaceful development of the Swedish
Rule of Gustavus Adolphus.
constitution at home. In this, as in every other
matter, Gustavus himself took the initiative.
Nominally the Senate still remained the dominant
power in the state; but gradually all real authority had
been transferred to the crown. The Riksråd speedily lost its
ancient character of a grand council representing the
semi-feudal landed aristocracy, and became a bureaucracy holding the chief offices of state at the good
pleasure of the king. The Riksdag also changed
its character at the same time. Whilst in every other European
country except England, the ancient popular representation
by estates was about to disappear altogether, in Sweden
under Gustavus Adolphus it grew into an integral portion
of the constitution. The Riksdag ordinance of 1617 first
converted a turbulent and haphazard mob of “riksdagmen,”
huddling together like a flock of sheep “or drunken boors, ”
into a dignified national assembly, meeting and deliberating
according to rule and order. One of the nobility (first
called the Landtmarskalk
), or marshal of the Diet, in the Riksdag
ordinance of 1526) was now regularly appointed by the king
as the spokesman of the Riddarhus, or House of Nobles, while
the primate generally acted as the talman or president of the
three lower estates, the clergy, burgesses and peasants, though
at a later day each of the three lower estates elected its own
talman. At the opening of every session, the king submitted
to the estates “royal propositions,” or bills, upon which each
estate proceeded to deliberate in its own separate chamber.
The replies of the estates were delivered to the king at a subsequent
session in congress. Whenever the estates differed
amongst themselves, the king chose whatever opinion seemed
best to him. The rights of the Riksdag were secured by the
Konungaförsäkran, or assurance given by every Swedish king
on his accession, guaranteeing the collaboration of the estates
in the Work of legislation, and they were also to be consulted
on all questions of foreign policy. The king possessed the
initiative; but the estates had the right of objecting to the
measures of the government at the close of each session. It is
in Gustavus's reign, too, that we first hear of the Hemliga
Utskott, or “secret committee” for the transaction of extraordinary
affairs, which was elected by the estates themselves.
The eleven Riksdags held by Gustavus Adolphus were almost
exclusively occupied in finding ways and means for supporting
the ever-increasing burdens of the Polish and German wars.
And to the honour of the Swedish people be it said that, from
first to last, they showed a religious and patriotic zeal which
shrank from no sacrifice. It was to this national devotion
quite as much as to his own qualities that Gustavus owed his
success as an empire-builder.
The wars with Denmark and Russia had been almost exclusively Scandinavian wars; the Polish war was of world-wide significance. It was, in the first place, a struggle War with Poland. for the Baltic littoral, and the struggle was intensified by the knowledge that the Polish Vasas denied the right of Gustavus to the Swedish throne. In the eyes of the Swedish king, moreover, the Polish War was a war of religion. Gustavus regarded the Scandinavian kingdoms as the two chief pillars on which the Evangelical religion reposed. Their disunion, he argued, would open a door in the north to the Catholic league and so bring about the destruction of Denmark and Sweden alike. Hence his alliance with Denmark to defend Stralsund in 1628. There is much of unconscious exaggeration in all this. As a matter of fact the Polish republic was no danger whatever to Protestantism. Sigismund's obstinate insistence upon his right to the Swedish crown was the one impediment to the conclusion of a war which the Polish Diet heartily detested and very successfully impeded. Apart from the semi-impotent Polish court, no responsible Pole dreamed of aggrandisement in Sweden. In fact, during the subsequent reign of Wladislaus IV. (1632-1648), the Poles prevented that martial monarch from interfering in the Thirty Years' War on the Catholic side. Gustavus, whose lively imagination was easily excited by religious ardour, enormously magnified clerical influence in Poland and frequently scented dangers where only difficulties existed.
For eight years (1621-29) the exhausting and expensive Polish war dragged on. By the beginning of 1626 Livonia was conquered and the theatre of hostilities was transferred to the Prussian provinces of Poland (see Gustavus II. Adolphus; Koniecpolski [Stanislaus]). The fertile and easily defensible delta of the Vistula was now occupied and Gustavus treated it as a permanent conquest, making his great minister Axel Oxenstjerna its first governor-general. But this was the limit of the Swedish advance. All Gustavus's further efforts were frustrated by the superior strategy of the Polish grandhetman Koniecpolski, and, in June 1629, the king gladly accepted the lucrative truce of Altmark. By this truce Sweden was, for six years, to retain possession of her Livonian conquests, besides holding Elbing, the Vistula delta, Braunsberg in West, and Pillau and Memel in East Prussia, with the right to levy tolls at Pillau, Memel, Danzig, Labiau and Windau. From these tolls Gustavus derived, in 1629 alone, 500,000 rix-dollars, a sum equivalent to the whole of the extraordinary subsidies granted to him by the Riksdag. Thus Sweden held, for a time, the control of the principal trade routes of the Baltic up to the very confines of the empire; and the increment of revenue resulting from this commanding position was of material assistance to her during the earlier stages of the war in Germany, whither Gustavus transferred his forces in June 1630.
The motives of Gustavus in plunging into the Thirty Years' War and the details of the struggle as regards Sweden are elsewhere set forth (see Gustavus II.; Oxenstjerna [Axel]; Banér [Johan]; Torstensson [Lennart]). Sweden and the Thirty Years' War. Here the only point to be insisted upon is the extreme precariousness of the Swedish position from first to last—a precariousness due entirely to inadequacy of material resources. In 1632 all Germany lay at the feet of Sweden; two years later a single disaster (Nördlingen) brought her empire to the verge of ruin. For the next seven years the German War as regards Sweden was a struggle for existence. She triumphed in the end, it is true, but it was a triumph due entirely to a lucky accident—the possession, during the crisis, of the greatest statesman and the greatest captain of the age. It was the exploits of Oxenstjerna and Banér which alone enabled Sweden to obtain even what she did obtain at the great Westphalian peace congress in 1648. Her original demands were Silesia (she held most of the fortresses there), Pomerania (which had been in her possession for nearly twenty years), and a war indemnity of 20,000,000 rixdollars. What she actually got was (1) Upper Pomerania, with the islands of Rügen and Usedom, and a strip of Lower Pomerania on the right side of the Oder, including the towns of Stettin, Garz, Damm and Gollnow, and the isle of Wollin, with the right of succession to the rest of Lower Pomerania in the case of the extinction of the Brandenburg Hohenzollerns; (2) the town of Wismar with the districts of Poel and Neukloster; (3) the secularized bishoprics of Bremen and Verden; and (4) 5,000,000 rix-dollars. These German possessions were to be held as fiefs of the empire; and in respect thereof Sweden was to have a vote in the imperial Diet and to “direct” the Lower Saxon Circle alternately with Brandenburg. France and Sweden moreover, became joint guarantors of the treaty with the emperor, and were entrusted with the carrying out of its provisions, which was practically effected by the executive congress of Nüremberg in 1650.
Sweden's reward for the exertions and sacrifices of eighteen years was meagre, almost paltry. Her newly won possessions were both small and scattered, though, on the other hand, she had secured the practical control of the International Position of Sweden. three principal rivers of north Germany—the Oder, the Elbe and the Weser—and reaped the full advantage of the tolls levied on those great commercial arteries. The jealousy of France and the impatience of Queen Christina were the chief causes of the inadequacy of her final recompense. Yet, though the immediate gain was small, she had not dissipated her blood and treasure altogether in vain. Her vigorous intervention had saved the cause of religious liberty in Europe; and this remains, for all time, her greatest political achievement. Henceforth till her collapse, seventy years later, she was the recognized leader of Continental Protestantism. A more questionable benefit was her rapid elevation to the rank of an imperial power, an elevation which imposed the duty of remaining a military monarchy, armed cap-à-pie for every possible emergency. Every one recognizes now that the poverty and sparse population of Sweden unfitted her for such a tremendous destiny. But in the middle of the 17th century the incompatibility between her powers and her pretensions was not so obvious. All her neighbours were either decadent or exhausted states; and France, the most powerful of the Western powers, was her firm ally.
For the moment, however, Sweden held the field. Everything depended upon the policy of the next few years. Very careful statesmanship might mean permanent dominion Queen Christina, 1644-1654. on the Baltic shore, but there was not much margin for blundering. Unfortunately the extravagance of Gustavus Adolphus's two immediate successors, Christina and Charles X., shook the flimsy fabric of his empire to its very base. Christina's extravagance was financial. At the time of her abdication the state was on the verge of bankruptcy, and the financial difficulty had superinduced a serious political agitation. The mass of the Swedish people was penetrated by a justifiable fear that the external, artificial greatness of their country might, in the long run, be purchased with the loss of their civil and political liberties. In a word, the natural equilibrium of Swedish society was seriously threatened by the preponderance of the nobility; and the people at large looked to the new king to redress the balance. A better arbiter between the various estates than Charles X. Charles X., 1654-1660. it would have been difficult to find. It is true that, primarily a soldier, his whole ambition was directed towards military glory; but he was also an unusually sharp-sighted politician. He affected to believe that only by force of arms could Sweden retain the dominion which by force of arms she had won; but he also grasped the fact that there must be no disunion at home if she were to continue powerful abroad. The most pressing question of the day, the so-called Reduktion, or restitution of the alienated crown lands, was adjusted provisionally at the Riksdag of 1655. The king proposed that the actual noble holders of crown property should either pay an annual sum of 200,000 rix-dollars, to be allowed for out of any further crown lands subsequently falling in to them, or should surrender a fourth of the expectant property itself to the estimated amount of 600,000 rix-dollars. The nobility attempted to escape taxation as cheaply as possible by stipulating that the 6th of November 1632, the day of Gustavus Adolphus's death, should be the extreme limit of any retrospective action on the part of the crown in regard to alienated crown property, and that the present subsidy should be regarded as “a perpetual ordinance” unalterably to be observed by all future sovereigns—in other words, that there should be no further restitution of alienated crown property. Against this interpretation of the subsidy bill the already over-taxed lower estates protested so energetically that the Diet had to be suspended. Then the king intervened personally; not to quell the commons, as the senate insisted, but to compel the nobility to give way. He proposed that the whole matter should be thoroughly investigated by a special committee before the meeting of the next Riksdag, and that in the meantime a contribution should be levied on all classes proportionately. This equitable arrangement was accepted by the estates forthwith.
Charles X. had done his best to obviate the effects of the financial extravagance of Christina. It may well be doubted, however, whether his own extravagant desire for military glory was not equally injurious to his Charles X.'s Wars. country. In three days he had succeeded in persuading the Swedish estates of the lucrative expediency of his unnecessary and immoral attack on Poland (see Poland: History); but when he quitted Stockholm for Warsaw, on the 10th of July 1654, he little imagined that he had embarked on an adventure which was to contribute far more to his glory than to the advantage of his country. How the Polish War expanded into a general European war; how Charles's miraculous audacity again and again ravished favours from Fortune and Nature (e.g. the passage of the Belts) when both those great powers combined against him; how, finally, he emerged from all his difficulties triumphant, indeed, but only to die of sheer exhaustion in his thirty-eighth year—all this has elsewhere been described (see Charles X., king of Sweden; Czarniecki [Stephen]; Frederick III., king of Denmark). Suffice it to say that, immediately after his death, the regency appointed to govern Charles XI. Sweden during the minority of his only son and successor, Charles XI., a child four years old, hastened to come to terms with Sweden's numerous enemies, which now included Russia, Poland, Brandenburg and Denmark. The Peace of Oliva (May 3, 1660), made under Peace of Oliva, 1660. French mediation, put an end to the long feud with Poland and, at the same time, ended the quarrel between Sweden on the one side, and the emperor and the elector of Brandenburg on the other. By this peace, Sweden's possession of Livonia, and the elector of Brandenburg's sovereignty over east Prussia, were alike confirmed; and the king of Poland renounced all claim to the Swedish crown. As regards Denmark, the Peace of Oliva signified the desertion of her three principal allies, Poland, Brandenburg and the emperor, and thus compelled her to reopen negotiations with Sweden direct. The differences between the two states were finally adjusted by the peace of Copenhagen (May 27, 1660), Denmark ceding the three Scanian provinces to Sweden but receiving back the Norwegian province of Trondhjem and the isle of Bornholm which she had surrendered by the peace of Roskilde two years previously. Denmark was also compelled to recognize, practically, the independence of the dukes of Holstein-Gottorp. The Russian War was terminated by the Peace of Kardis (July 2, 1661), confirmatory of the Peace of Stolbova, whereby the tsar surrendered to Sweden all his Baltic provinces—Ingria, Esthonia and Kexholm.
Thus Sweden emerged from the war not only a military power of the first magnitude, but also one of the largest states of Europe, possessing about twice as much territory Sweden as a Great Power. as modern Sweden. Her area embraced 16,800 geographical square miles, a mass of land 7000 sq. m. larger than the modern German Empire. Yet the Swedish Empire was rather a geographical expression than a state with natural and national boundaries. Modern Sweden is bounded by the Baltic; during the 17th century the Baltic was merely the bond between her various widely dispersed dominions. All the islands in the Baltic, except the Danish group, belonged to Sweden. The estuaries of all the great German rivers (for the Niemen and Vistula are properly Polish rivers) debouched in Swedish territory, within which also lay two-thirds of Lake Ladoga and one-half of Lake Peipus. Stockholm, the capital, lay in the very centre of the empire, whose second greatest city was Riga, on theother side of the sea. Yet this vast empire contained but half the population of modern Sweden—being only 2,500,000, or about 140 souls to the square mile. Further, Sweden's new boundaries were of the most insecure description, inasmuch as they were anti-ethnographical, parting asunder races which naturally went together, and behind which stood powerful neighbours of the same stock ready, at the first opportunity, to reunite them.
Moreover, the commanding political influence which Sweden had now won was considerably neutralized by her loss of moral prestige. On Charles X.'s accession in 1655, Sweden's neighbours, though suspicious and uneasy, were at least not adversaries, and might have been converted into allies of the new great power who, if she had mulcted them of territory, had, anyhow, compensated them for the loss with the by no means contemptible douceur of religious liberty. At Charles X.'s death, five years later, we find Sweden, herself bled to exhaustion point, surrounded by a broad belt of desolated territory and regarded with ineradicable hatred by every adjacent state. To sink in five years from the position of the champion of Protestantism to that of the common enemy of every Protestant power was a degradation not to be compensated by any amount of military glory. Charles's subsequent endeavour, in stress of circumstances, to gain a friend by dividing his Polish conquests with the aspiring elector of Brandenburg was a reversal of his original policy and only resulted in the establishment on the southern confines of Sweden of a new rival almost as dangerous as Denmark, her ancient rival in the west.
In 1660, after five years of incessant warfare, Sweden had at length obtained peace and with it the opportunity of organizing and developing her newly won empire. Unfortunately, the regency which was to govern her during Minority of Charles XI. the next fifteen years was unequal to the difficulties of a situation which might have taxed the resources of the wisest statesmen. Unity and vigour were scarcely to be expected from a many-headed administration composed of men of mediocre talent whose contrary opinions speedily gave rise to contending factions. There was the high-aristocratic party with a leaning towards martial adventure headed by Magnus de la Gardie (q.v.), and the party of peace and economy whose ablest representative was the liberal and energetic Johan Gyllenstjerna (q.v.). After a severe struggle, de la Gardie's party prevailed; and its triumph was marked by that general decline of personal and political morality which has given to this regency its unenviable notoriety. Sloth and carelessness speedily invaded every branch of the administration, destroying all discipline and leading to a general neglect of business. Another characteristic of the de la Gardie government was its gross corruption, which made Sweden the obsequious hireling of that foreign power which had the longest purse. This shameful “subsidy policy” dates from the Treaty of Fontainebleau, 1661, by a secret paragraph of which Sweden, in exchange for a considerable sum of money, undertook to support the French candidate on the first vacancy of the Polish throne. The complications ensuing from Louis XIV.'s designs on the Spanish Netherlands led to a bid for the Swedish alliance, both from the French king and his adversaries. After much hesitation on the part of the Swedish government, the anti-French faction prevailed; and in April 1668 Sweden acceded to the Triple Alliance, which finally checkmated the French king by bringing about the Peace of Aix-la-Chapelle. For the next four years Sweden remained true to the principles of the Triple Alliance; but, in 1672, Louis XIV. succeeded in isolating the Dutch republic and regaining his ancient ally, Sweden. By the Treaty of Stockholm (April 14, 1672), Sweden became, for Alliance with France. the next ten years, a “mercenarius Galliae,” pledging herself, in return for 400,000 crowns per annum in peace and 600,000 in war-time, to attack, with 16,000 men, any German princes who might be disposed to assist Holland. In 1674 Louis XIV. peremptorily called upon Sweden to fulfil her obligations by invading Brandenburg. In the course of May 1675 a Swedish army advanced into the Mark, but on the 18th of June was defeated at Fehrbellin, and hastily retreated to Demmin. The Fehrbellin affair was a mere skirmish, the actual casualties amounting to less than 600 men, but it rudely divested Sweden of her nimbus of invincibility and was the signal for a general attack upon her, known as the Scanian War. The Scanian War. In the course of the next three years her empire seemed to be crumbling away everywhere. In 1675 Pomerania and the bishopric of Bremen were overrun by the Brandenburgers, Austrians and Danes. In December 1677 the elector of Brandenburg captured Stettin. Stralsund fell on the 15th of October 1678. Greifswald, Sweden's last possession on the Continent, was lost on the 5th of November. A defensive alliance with Sobieski (August 4, 1677) was rendered inoperative by the annihilation of Sweden's sea-power (battle of Gland, June 17, 1676; battle of Fehmarn, June 1677) and the difficulties of the Polish king.
Two accidents at this crisis alone saved Sweden from ruin—the splendid courage of the young king who, resolutely and successfully, kept the Danish invaders at bay (see Charles XI., king of Sweden), and the diplomatic activity of Louis XIV. In March 1677 a peace congress began its sessions at Nijmwegen; and in the beginning of April 1678 the French king dictated the terms of a general pacification. One of his chief conditions was the complete restitution of Sweden. A strong Sweden was necessary to the accomplishment of his plans. He suggested, however, that Sweden should rid herself of her enemies by making some “small cession” to them. This Charles XI. refused to do, whereupon Louis took it upon himself to conclude peace on Sweden's account without consulting the wishes of of the Swedish king. By this Treaty of Nijmwegen Treaty of Nijmwegen, 1679. (Feb. 7) and of St Germain (June 29, 1679) Sweden virtually received full restitution of her German territory. On the 2nd of September by the Peace of Fontainebleau (confirmed by the subsequent Peace of Lund, Oct. 4, 1679), Denmark was also forced to retrocede her conquests. It is certain that Sweden herself could never have extorted such favourable terms, yet “the insufferable tutelage” of France on this occasion inspired Charles XI. with a personal dislike of the mighty ruler of France and contributed to reverse the traditional diplomacy of Sweden by giving it a strong anti-French bias (see Charles XI.; Oxenstjerna, Benedict).
The remainder of the reign of Charles XI. is remarkable for a revolution which converted the government of Sweden into a semi-absolute monarchy. The king emerged from Charles XI. and the Swedish Constitution. the war convinced that if Sweden were to retain her position as a great power she must radically reform her whole economical system, and, above all, circumscribe the predominant and mischievous influence of an aristocracy which thought far more of its privileges than of its public duties. He felt that he could now draw upon the confidence and liberality of the lower orders to an unlimited extent, and he proceeded to do so. The Riksdag which assembled in Stockholm in October 1680 begins a new era of Swedish history. On the motion of the Estate of Peasants, which had a long memory for aristocratic abuses, the question of the recovery of the alienated crown lands was brought before the Riksdag, and, despite the stubborn opposition of the magnates, a resolution of the Diet directed that all count ships, baronies, domains, manors and other estates producing an annual rent of more than £70 per annum should revert to the Crown. The same Riksdag decided that the king was not bound by any particular constitution, but only by law and the statutes. Nay, they added that he was not even obliged to consult the council of state, but was to be regarded as a sovereign lord, responsible to God alone for his actions, and requiring no intermediary between himself and his people. The council thereupon acquiesced in its own humiliation by meekly accepting a royal brief changing its official title from Riksråd (council of state) to Kungligaråd (royal council)—a visible sign that the senators were no longer the king's colleagues but his servants.
Thus Sweden, as well as Denmark, had become an absolute monarchy, but with this important difference, that the right of the Swedish people, in parliament assembled, to be consulted on all important matters was recognized and acted upon. The Riksdag, completely overshadowed by the throne, was during the reign of Charles XI. to do little more than register the royal decrees; but nevertheless it continued to exist as an essential part of the machinery of government. Moreover, this transfer of authority was a voluntary act. The people, knowing the king to be their best friend, trusted him implicit and co-operated with him cheerfully. The Riksdag of 1682 proposed a fresh Reduktion, and declared that the whole question of how far the king was empowered by the law of the land to bestow fiefs, or, in case of urgent national distress, take them back again, was exclusively his majesty's affair. In other words, it made the king the disposer of his subjects' temporal property. Presently this new principle of autocracy was extended to the king's legislative authority also, for, on the 9th of December 1682, all four estates, by virtue of a common declaration, not only confirmed him in the possession of the legislative powers enjoyed by his predecessors, but even conceded to him the right of interpreting and amending the common law.
The recovery of the alienated crown lands occupied Charles XI. for the rest of his life. It was conducted by a commission which was ultimately converted into a permanent department of state. It acted on the principle that the titles of all private landed estate might be called in question, inasmuch as at some time or other it must have belonged to the Crown; and the burden of proof of ownership was held not to lie with the Crown which made the claim, but with the actual owner of the property. The amount of revenue accruing to the Crown from the whole Reduktion it is impossible to estimate even approximately; but by these means, combined with the most careful management and the most rigid economy, Charles XI. contrived to reduce the national debt from £2,567,000 to £700,000.
These operations represent only a part of Charles XI.'s gigantic activity. Here we have only space sufficient to glance at his reorganization of the national armaments. Reorganization of Armaments. Charles XI. re-established on a broader basis the indelningsverk introduced by Charles IX.—a system of military tenure whereby the national forces were bound to the soil. Thus there was the rusthåll tenure, under which the tenants, instead of paying rent, were obliged to equip and maintain a cavalry soldier and horse, while the knekthållarer supplied duly equipped foot soldiers. These indelning soldiers were provided with holdings on which they lived in times of peace. Formerly, ordinary conscription had existed alongside this indelning, or distribution system; but it had proved inadequate as well as highly unpopular; and, in 1682, Charles XI. came to an agreement with the peasantry whereby an extended indelning system was to be substituted for general conscription. The navy, of even more importance to Sweden if she were to maintain the dominion of the Baltic, was entirely remodelled; and, the recent war having demonstrated the unsuitability of Stockholm as a naval station, the construction of a new arsenal on a gigantic scale was simultaneously begun at Karlskrona. After a seventeen years' struggle against all manner of financial difficulties, the twofold enterprise was completed. At the death of Charles XI. Sweden could boast of a fleet of forty-three three-deckers (manned by 11,000 men and armed with 2648 guns) and one of the finest arsenals in the world.
Charles XI. had carefully provided against the contingency of his successor's minority; and the five regents appointed by him, if not great statesmen, were at least practical politicans who had not been trained in his austere Charles XII., 1697-1718. school in vain. At home the Reduktion was cautiously pursued, while abroad the successful conclusion of the great peace congress at Ryswick was justly regarded as a. signal triumph of Sweden's pacific diplomacy (see Oxenstjerna Family). The young king was full of promise, and had he been permitted gradually to gain experience and develop his naturally great talents beneath the guidance of his guardians, as his father had intended, all might have been well for Sweden. Unfortunately, the sudden, noiseless revolution of the 6th of November 1697, which made Charles XII. absolute master of his country's fate in his fifteenth year (see Charles XII.), and the league of Denmark, Saxony and Russia, formed two years later to partition Sweden (see Patkul, Johann Reinhold; Peter the Great; Charles XII.), precipitated Sweden into a sea of troubles in which she was finally submerged.
From the very beginning of the Great Northern War Sweden suffered from the inability of Charles XII. to view the situation from anything but a purely personal point of view. His determination to avenge himself on enemies Great Northern War. overpowered every other consideration. Again and again during these eighteen years of warfare it was in his power to dictate an advantageous peace. After the dissipation of the first coalition against him by the peace of Travendal (Aug. 18, 1700) and the victory of Narva (Nov. 20, 1700), the Swedish chancellor, Benedict Oxenstjerna, rightly regarded the universal bidding for the favour of Sweden by France and the maritime powers, then on the eve of the War of the Spanish Succession, as a golden opportunity of “ending this present lean war and making his majesty the arbiter of Europe.” But Charles, intent on dethroning Augustus of Poland, held haughtily aloof. Subsequently in 1701 he rejected a personal appeal from William III. to conclude peace on his own terms. Five years later (Sept. 24, 1706) he did, indeed, conclude the Polish War by the peace of Altranstädt, but as this treaty brought no advantage to Sweden, not even compensation for the expenses of six years of warfare, it was politically condemnable. Moreover, two of Sweden's Baltic provinces, Esthonia and Ingria, had been seized by the tsar, and a third, Livonia, had been well-nigh ruined. Yet even now Charles, by a stroke of the pen, could have recovered nearly everything he had lost. In 1707 Peter was ready to retrocede everything except St Petersburg and the line of the Neva, and again Charles preferred risking the whole to saving the greater part of his Baltic possessions (for details see Charles XII.; Peter the Great). When at last, after the catastrophe of Poltava (June 1709) and the flight into Turkey, he condescended to use diplomatic methods, it was solely to prolong, not to terminate, the war. Even now he could have made honourable terms with his numerous enemies. The resources of Sweden were still very far from being exhausted, and, during 1710 and 1711, the gallant Magnus Stenbock (q.v.) upheld her military supremacy in the north. But all the efforts of the Swedish government were wrecked on the determination of Charles XII. to surrender nothing. Thus he rejected advantageous offers of mediation and alliance made to him, during 1712, by the maritime powers and by Prussia; and, in 1714, he scouted the friendly overtures of Louis XIV. and the emperor, so that when peace was finally concluded between France and the Empire, at the congress of Baden, Swedish affairs were, by common consent, left out of consideration. When, on the 14th of September 1714, he suddenly returned to his dominions, Stralsund and Wismar were all that remained to him of his continental possessions; while by the end of 1715 Sweden, now fast approaching the last stage of exhaustion, was at open war with England, Hanover, Russia, Prussia, Saxony and Denmark, who had formed a coalition to partition her continental territory between them. Nevertheless, at this the eleventh hour of her opportunities, Sweden might still have saved something from the wreck of her empire if Charles had behaved like a reasonable being (see Charles XII.; Peter the Great; Görtz, Georg Heinrich von; Osterman, Andrei); but he would only consent to play off Russia against England, and his sudden death before Fredrikshald (Dec. 11, 1718) left Sweden practically at the end beginning of her resources and at the mercy of her enemies. At the Treaties of Stockholm and Frederiksborg, 1719 and 1720 beginning of 1719 pacific overtures were made to England, Hanover, Prussia and Denmark. By the treaties of Stockholm (Feb. 20, 1719, and Feb. 1, 1720) Hanover obtained the bishoprics of Bremen and Verden for herself and Stettin for her confederate Prussia. By the treaty of Frederiksborg or Copenhagen (July 3, 1720) peace was also signed between Denmark and Sweden, Denmark retroceding Rügen. Further Pomerania as far as the Peene, and Wismar to Sweden, in exchange for an indemnity of 600,000 rix-dollars, while Sweden relinquished her exemption from the Sound tolls and her protectorate over Holstein-Gottorp. The prospect of coercing Russia by means of the British fleet had alone induced Sweden to consent to such sacrifices; but when the last demands of England and her allies had been complied with, Sweden Peace of Nystad, 1721. Loss of the Baltic Provinces. was left to come to terms as best she could with the tsar. Negotiations were reopened with Russia at Nystad, in May 1720, but peace was not concluded till the 30th of August 1721, and then only under the direst pressure. By the peace of Nystad Sweden ceded to Russia Ingria and Esthonia, Livonia, the Finnish province of Kexholm and the fortress of Viborg. Finland west of Viborg and north of Kexholm was restored to Sweden. She also received an indemnity of two millions of thalers and a solemn undertaking of non-interference in her domestic affairs.
It was not the least of Sweden's misfortunes after the Great Northern War that the new constitution, which was to compensate her for all her past sacrifices, should contain within it the elements of many of her future calamities. Early in 1720 Charles XII.'s sister, Ulrica Leonora, who had been elected queen of Sweden immediately after his death, was permitted to abdicate in favour of her husband the prince of Hesse, who was elected king Frederick I., 1720-1751. The Limited Monarchy. under the title of Frederick I.; and Sweden was, at the same time, converted into the most limited of monarchies. All power was vested in the people as represented by the Riksdag, consisting, as before, of four distinct estates, nobles, priests, burgesses and peasants, sitting and deliberating apart. The conflicting interests and mutual jealousies of these four independent assemblies made the work of legislation exceptionally difficult. No measure could now become law till it had obtained the assent of three at least of the four estates; but this provision, which seems to have been designed to protect the lower orders against the nobility, produced evils far greater than those which it professed to cure. Thus, measures might be passed by a bare majority in three estates, when a real and substantial majority of all four estates in congress might be actually against it. Or, again, a dominant action in any three of the estates might enact laws highly detrimental to the interests of the remaining estate—a danger the more to be apprehended as in no other country in Europe were class distinctions so sharply defined as in Sweden.
Each estate was ruled by its talman, or speaker, who was now elected at the beginning of each Diet, but the archbishop was, ex officio, the talman of the clergy. The landtmarskalk, or speaker of the House of Nobles, presided Constitution of the Estates.; when the estates met in congress, and also, by virtue of his office, in the hemliga utskott, or secret committee. This famous body, which consisted of 50 nobles, 25 priests, 25 burgesses, and, very exceptionally, 25 peasants, possessed during the session of the Riksdag not only the supreme executive but also the surpeme judicial and legislative functions. It prepared all bills for the Riksdag, created and deposed all ministries, controlled the foreign policy of the nation, and claimed and often exercised the right of superseding the ordinary courts of justice. During the parliamentary recess, however, the executive remained in the hands of the rad, or senate, which was responsible to the Riksdag alone.
It will be obvious that there was no room in this republican constitution for a constitutional monarch in the modern sense of the word. The crowned puppet who possessed a casting vote in the råd, of which he was the nominal president, and who was allowed to create peers once in his life (at his coronation), was rather a state decoration than a sovereignty.
At first this cumbrous and complicated instrument of government worked tolerably well under the firm but cautious control of the chancellor, Count Arvid Beernhard Horn (q.v.). In his anxiety to avoid embroiling his country Political Parties. Hats and Caps. abroad, Horn reversed the traditional policy of Sweden by keeping France at a distance and drawing near to Great Britain, for whose liberal institutions he professed the highest admiration. Thus a twenty years' war was succeeded by a twenty years' peace, during which the nation recovered so rapidly from its wounds that it began to forget them. A new race of politicians was springing up. Since 1719, when the influence of the few great territorial families had been merged in a multitude of needy gentlemen, the first estate had become the nursery and afterwards the stronghold of an opposition at once noble and democratic which found its natural leaders in such men as Count Carl Gyllenborg and Count Carl Gustaf Tessin (q.v.). These men and their followers were never weary of ridiculing the timid caution of the aged statesman who sacrificed everything to perpetuate an inglorious peace and derisively nicknamed his adherents “Night-caps” (a term subsequently softened into “Caps”), themselves adopting the sobriquet “Hats,” from the three-cornered hat worn by officers and gentlemen, which was considered happily to hit off the manly self-assertion of the opposition. These epithets instantly caught the public fancy and had already become party badges when the estates met in 1738. This Riksdag was to mark another turning-point in Swedish history. The Hats carried everything before them; and the aged Horn was finally compelled to retire from a scene where, for three and thirty years, he had played a leading part.
The policy of the Hats was a return to the traditional alliance between France and Sweden. When Sweden descended to her natural position as a second-rate power the French Alliance. French alliance became too costly a luxury. Horn had clearly perceived this; and his cautious neutrality was therefore the soundest statesmanship. But the politicians who had ousted Horn thought differently. To them prosperity without glory was a worthless possession. They aimed at restoring Sweden to her former position as a great power. France, naturally, hailed with satisfaction the rise of a faction which was content to be her armour bearer in the north; and the golden streams which flowed from Versailles to Stockholm during the next two generations were the political life-blood of the Hat party.
The first blunder of the Hats was the hasty and ill-advised war with Russia. The European complications consequent upon the almost simultaneous deaths of the emperor Charles VI. and Anne, empress of Russia, seemed War with Russia, 1741. to favour their adventurous schemes; and, despite the frantic protests of the Caps, a project for the invasion of Russian Finland was rushed through the premature Riksdag of 1740. On the 20th of July 1741 war was formally declared against Russia; a month later the Diet was dissolved and the Hat landtmarskalk set off to Finland to take command of the army. The first blow was not struck till six months after the declaration of war; and it was struck by the enemy, who routed the Swedes at Villmanstrand and captured that frontier fortress. Nothing else was done on either side for six months more; and then the Swedish generals made a “tacit truce” with the Russians through the mediation of the French ambassador at St Petersburg. By the time that the “tacit truce” had come to an end the Swedish forces were so demoralized that the mere rumour of a hostile attack made them retire panic-stricken to Helsingfors; and before the end of the year all Finland was in the hands of the Russians. The fleet, disabled by an epidemic, was, throughout the war, little more than a floating hospital.
To face the Riksdag with such a war as this upon their consciences was a trial from which the Hats naturally shrank; but, to do them justice, they showed themselves better parliamentary than military strategists. A motion for an inquiry into the conduct of the war was skilfully evaded by obtaining precedence for the succession question (Queen Ulrica Leonora had lately died childless and King Frederick was old); and negotiations were thus opened with the new Russian empress, Elizabeth, who agreed to restore the greater part of Finland if her cousin, Adolphus Frederick of Holstein, were elected successor to the Swedish crown. The Hats eagerly caught at the opportunity of recovering the grand duchy and their own Peace of Åbo, 1743 prestige along with it. By the peace of Åbo (May 7, 1743) the terms of the empress were accepted, and only that small part of Finland which lay beyond the Kymmene was retained by Russia.
In March 1751 old King Frederick died. His slender prerogatives had gradually dwindled down to vanishing point. Adolphus Frederick (q.v.) would have given even less trouble than his predecessor but for the ambitious Adolphus Frederick II., 1751-1771. promptings of his masterful consort Louisa Ulrica, Frederick the Great's sister, and the tyranny of the estates, who seemed bent upon driving the meekest of princes into rebellion. An attempted monarchical revolution, planned by the queen and a few devoted young nobles in 1756, was easily and remorselessly crushed; and, though the unhappy king did not, as he anticipated, share the fate of Charles Stuart, he was humiliated as never monarch was humiliated before.
The same years which beheld this great domestic triumph of the Hats saw also the utter collapse of their foreign “system.” At the instigation of France they plunged recklessly into the Seven Years' War; and the result was ruinous. The French subsidies, which might have sufficed for a six weeks' demonstration (it was generally assumed that the king of Prussia would give little trouble to a European coalition), proved quite inadequate; and, after five unsuccessful campaigns, the The Seven Years' War. unhappy Hats were glad to make peace and ignominiously withdraw from a little war which had cost the country 40,000 men and £2,500,000. When the Riksdag met in 1760, the indignation against the Hat leaders was so violent that an impeachment seemed inevitable; but once more the superiority of their parliamentary tactics prevailed, and when, after a session of twenty months, the Riksdag was brought to a close by the mutual consent of both the exhausted factions, the Hat government was bolstered up for another four years. But the day of reckoning could not be postponed for ever; and when the estates met in 1765 it brought the Caps into power at last. Their leader, Ture Rudbeck, was elected marshal of the Diet over Frederick Axel von Fersen (q.v.), the Hat candidate, by a large majority; and, out of the hundred seats in the secret committee, the Hats succeeded in getting only ten.
The Caps struck at once at the weak point of their opponents by ordering a budget report to be made; and it was speedily found that the whole financial system of the Hats had been based upon reckless improvidence and Rule of the Caps. wilful misrepresentation, and that the only fruit of their long rule was an enormous addition to the national debt and a depreciation of the note circulation to one-third of its face value. This revelation led to an all-round retrenchment, carried into effect with a drastic thoroughness which has earned for this parliament the name of the “Reduktion Riksdag.” The Caps succeeded in transferring £250,000 from the pockets of the rich to the empty exchequer, reducing the national debt by £575,179, and establishing some sort of equilibrium between revenue and expenditure. They also introduced a few useful reforms, the most remarkable of which was the liberty of the press. But their most important political act was to throw their lot definitely in with Russia, so Russian Alliance. as to counterpoise the influence of France. Sweden was not then as now quite outside the European Concert. Although no longer a great power, she still had many of the responsibilities of a great power; and if the Swedish alliance had considerably depreciated in value, it was still a marketable commodity. Sweden's peculiar geographical position made her virtually invulnerable for six months out of the twelve, her Pomeranian possessions afforded her an easy ingress into the very heart of the moribund empire, while her Finnish frontier was not many leagues from the Russian capital.
A watchful neutrality, not venturing much beyond defensive alliances and commercial treaties with the maritime powers, was therefore Sweden's safest policy, and this the older Caps had always followed out. But when the Hats became the armour-bearers of France in the north, a protector strong enough to counteract French influence became the cardinal exigency of their opponents, the younger Caps, who now flung themselves into the arms of Russia, overlooking the fact that even a pacific union with Russia was more to be feared than a martial alliance with France. For France was too distant to be dangerous. She sought an ally in Sweden and it was her endeavour to make that ally as strong as possible. But it was as a future prey, not as a possible ally, that Russia regarded her ancient rival in the north. In the treaty which partitioned Poland there was a secret clause which engaged the contracting powers to uphold the existing Swedish constitution as the swiftest means of subverting Swedish independence; and an alliance with the credulous Caps, “the Patriots” as they were called at St Petersburg, guaranteeing their constitution, was the corollary to this secret understanding. Thus, while the French alliance of the warlike Hats had destroyed the prestige of Sweden, the Russian alliance of the peaceful Caps threatened to destroy her very existence.
Fortunately, the domination of the Caps was not for long. The general distress occasioned by their drastic reforms had found expression in swarms of pamphlets which bit and stung the Cap government, under the protection of the new press laws. The senate retaliated by an order in council (which the king refused to sign) declaring that all complaints against the measures of the last Riksdag should be punished with fine and imprisonment. The king, at the suggestion of the crown prince (see Gustavus III.), thereupon urged the senate to summon an extraordinary Riksdag as the speediest method of relieving the national distress, and, on their refusing to comply with his wishes, abdicated. From the 15th of December to the 21st of December 1768 Sweden was without a regular government. Then the Cap senate gave way and the estates were convoked for the 19th of April 1769.
On the eve of the contest there was a general assembly of the Hats at the French embassy, where the Comte de Modène furnished them with 6,000,000 livres, but not till they had signed in his presence an undertaking to reform the constitution in a monarchical sense. Still more energetic on the other side, the Russian minister, Ivan Osterman, became the treasurer as well as the counsellor of the Caps, and scattered the largesse of the Russian empress with a lavish hand; and so lost to all feeling of patriotism were the Caps that they openly threatened all who ventured to vote against them with the Muscovite vengeance, and fixed Norrköping, instead of Stockholm, as the place of meeting for the Riksdag as being more accessible to the Russian fleet. But it soon became evident that the Caps were Defeat of the Caps. playing a losing game; and, when the Riksdag met at Norrköping on the 10th of April, they found themselves in a minority in all four estates. In the contest for the marshalate of the Diet the leaders of the two parties were again pitted against each other, when the verdict of the last Riksdag was exactly reversed, Fersen defeating Rudbeck by 234, though Russia spent no less a sum than £11,500 to secure the election of the latter.
The Caps had short shrift, and the joint note which the Russian, Prussian and Danish ministers presented to the estates protesting, in menacing terms, against any “reprisals” on the part of the triumphant faction, only hastened the fall of the government. The Cap senate resigned en masse to escape impeachment, and an exclusively Hat ministry took its place. The Reaction Riksdag. On the 1st of June the Reaction Riksdag, as it was generally called, removed to the capital; and it was now that the French ambassador and the crown prince Gustavus called upon the new senators to redeem their promise as to a reform of the constitution which they had made before the elections. But when, at the fag-end of the session, they half-heatedly brought the matter forward, the Riksdag suddenly seemed to be stricken with paralysis. Impediments multiplied at every step; the cry was raised: “The constitution is in danger”; and on the 30th of January 1770 the Reaction Riksdag, after a barren ten months' session, rose amidst chaotic confusion without accomplishing anything.
Adolphus Frederick died on the 12th of February 1771. The elections held on the demise of the Crown resulted in a partial victory for the Caps, especially among the lower orders; but in the estate of the peasants Gustavus III., 1771-1792. their majority was merely nominal, while the mass of the nobility was dead against them. Nothing could be done, however, till the arrival of the new king (then at Paris), and every one felt that with Gustavus III. an entirely incalculable factor had entered into Swedish politics. Unknown to the party leaders, he had already renewed the Swedish alliance with France and had received solemn assurances of assistance from Louis XV. in case he succeeded in re-establishing monarchical rule in Sweden. France undertook, moreover, to pay the outstanding subsidies to Sweden, amounting to one and a half millions of livres annually, beginning from January 1772; and Vergennes, one of the great names of French diplomacy, was to be sent to circumvent the designs of Russia at Stockholm as he had previously circumvented them at Constantinople. Immediately after his return to Stockholm, Gustavus endeavoured to reconcile the jarring factions by inducing the leaders to form a composition committee to adjust their differences. In thus mediating he was sincere enough, but all his pacific efforts were frustrated by their jealousy of him and of each other. Still worse, the factions now in trenched still further on the prerogative. The new coronation oath contained three revolutionary clauses. The first aimed at making abdications in the future impossible by binding the king to reign uninterruptedly. The second obliged him to abide, not by the decision of all the estates together, as heretofore, but by that of the majority only, with the view of enabling the actually dominant lower estates (in which was a large Cap majority) to rule without, and even in spite of, the nobility. The third clause required him, in all cases of preferment, to be guided not “principally,” as heretofore, but “solely” by merit, thus striking at the very root of aristocratic privilege. It was clear that the ancient strife of Hats and Caps had become merged in a conflict of classes; the situation was still further complicated by the ominous fact that the non-noble majority was also the Russian faction.
All through 1771 the estates were wrangling over the clauses of the coronation oath. A second attempt of the king to mediate between them foundered on the suspicions of the estate of burgesses; and, on the 24th of February 1772, the nobility yielded from sheer weariness. The non-noble Cap majority now proceeded to attack the senate, the last stronghold of the Hats, and, on the 25th of April, succeeded in ousting their opponents. It was now, for the first time, that Gustavus, reduced to the condition of a roi fainéant, began seriously to consider the possibility of a revolution; of its necessity there could be no doubt. Under the sway of the now dominant faction, Sweden, already the vassal, could not fail speedily to become the victim of Russia. She was on the point of being absorbed in that Northern System, the invention of the Russian minister of foreign affairs, Nikita Panin (q.v.), which that patient statesman had made it the ambition of his life to realize. Only Monarchical Coup d'état of 1772. a swift and sudden coup d'état could save the independence of a country isolated from the rest of Europe by a hostile league. The details of the famous revolution of the 19th of August 1772 are elsewhere set forth (see Gustavus III.; Toll, Johan Kristoffer; Sprengtporten, Jakob Magnus). Here we can only dwell upon its political importance and consequences. The new constitution of the 20th of August 1772, which Gustavus imposed upon the terrified estates at the bayonet's point, converted a weak and disunited republic into a strong but limited monarchy, in which the balance of power inclined, on the whole, to the side of the monarch. The estates could only assemble when summoned by him; he could dismiss them whenever he thought fit; and their deliberations were to be confined exclusively to the propositions which he might think fit to lay before them. But these very extensive powers were subjected to many important checks. Thus, without the previous consent of the estates, no new law could be imposed, no old law abolished, no offensive war undertaken, no extraordinary war subsidy levied. The estates alone could tax themselves; they had the absolute control of the Bank of Sweden, and the inalienable right of controlling the national expenditure. Thus the parliament held the purse; and this seemed a sufficient guarantee both of its independence and its frequent convention. The senate, not the Riksdag, was the chief loser by the change; and, inasmuch as henceforth the senators were appointed by the king, and were to be responsible to him alone, a senate in opposition to the Crown was barely conceivable.
Abroad the Swedish revolution made a great sensation. Catherine II. of Russia saw in it the triumph of her arch-enemy France, with the prolongation of the costly Turkish War as its immediate result. But the absence of troops on the Finnish border, and the bad condition of the frontier fortresses, constrained the empress to listen to Gustavus's pacific assurances, and stay her hand. She took the precaution, however, of concluding a fresh secret alliance with Denmark, in which the Swedish revolution was significantly described as “an act of violence” constituting a casus foederis, and justifying both powers in seizing the first favourable opportunity for intervention to restore the Swedish constitution of 1720.
In Sweden itself the change was, at first, most popular. But Gustavus's first Riksdag, that of 1778, opened the eyes of the deputies to the fact that their political supremacy had departed. The king was now their sovereign lord; and, for all his courtesy and gentleness, the jealousy with which he guarded and the vigour with which he enforced the prerogative plainly showed that he meant to remain so. But it was not till after eight years more had elapsed that actual trouble began. The Riksdag of 1778 had been obsequious; the Riksdag of 1786 was mutinous. It rejected nearly all the royal measures outright, or so modified them that Gustavus himself withdrew them. When he dismissed the estates, the speech from the throne held out no prospect of their speedy revocation.
Nevertheless, within three years, the king was obliged to summon another Riksdag, which met at Stockholm on the 26th of January 1789. His attempt in the interval to rule without a parliament had been disastrous. It was only by a breach of his own constitution that he had been able to declare war against Russia (April 1788); the conspiracy of Anjala (July) had paralysed all military operations at the very opening of the campaign; and the sudden invasion of his western provinces by the Danes, almost simultaneously (September), seemed to bring him to the verge of ruin. But the contrast, at this crisis, between his self-sacrificing patriotism and the treachery of the Russophil aristocracy was so striking that, when the Riksdag assembled, Gustavus found that the three lower estates were ultra-royalist, and with their aid he succeeded, not without running great risks (see Gustavus III.; Nordin, Gustaf; Wallqvist, Olaf), in crushing the opposition of the nobility by a second coup d'état (Feb. 16, 1789), and passing the The Act of Union and Security, 1789. famous Act of Union and Security which gave the king an absolutely free hand as regards foreign affairs and the command of the army, and made further treason impossible. For this the nobility never forgave him. It was impossible, indeed, to resist openly so highly gifted and so popular a sovereign; it was only by the despicable expedient of assassination that the last great monarch of Sweden was finally removed, to the infinite detriment of his country.
The ensuing period was a melancholy one. The aristocratic classes loudly complained that the young king, Gustavus IV., still a minor, was being brought up among Gustavus IV., 1792-1809. crypto-Jacobins; while the middle classes, deprived of the stimulating leadership of the anti-aristocratic “Prince Charming,” and becoming more and more inoculated with French political ideas, drifted into an antagonism not merely to hereditary nobility, but to hereditary monarchy likewise. Everything was vacillating and uncertain; and the general instability was reflected even in foreign affairs, now that the master-hand of Gustavus III. was withdrawn. Sweden and Revolutionary France. The renewed efforts of Catherine II. to interfere in Sweden's domestic affairs were, indeed, vigorously repulsed, but without tact or discretion, so that the good understanding between the two countries was seriously impaired, especially when the proclivities of Gustaf Reuterholm (q.v.), who then virtually ruled Sweden, induced him to adopt what was generally considered an indecently friendly attitude towards the government at Paris. Despite the execution of Louis XVI. (Jan. 21, 1793), Sweden, in the hope of obtaining considerable subsidies, recognized the new French republic; and secret negotiations for contracting an alliance were actually begun in May of the same year, till the menacing protests of Catherine, supported as they were by all the other European powers, finally induced Sweden to suspend them.
The negotiations with the French Jacobins exacerbated the hatred which the Gustavians already felt for the Jacobin councillors of the duke-regent (see Charles XIII., king of Sweden). Smarting beneath their grievances and seriously believing that not only the young king's crown but his very life was in danger, they formed a conspiracy, the soul of which was Gustaf Mauritz Armfelt (q.v.), to overthrow the government, with the aid of a Russian fleet, supported by a rising of the Dalecarlians. The conspiracy was discovered and vigorously suppressed.
The one bright side of this gloomy and sordid period was the rapprochement between the Scandinavian kingdoms during the revolutionary wars. Thus, on the 27th of March Alliance with Denmark. 1794, a neutrality compact was formed between Denmark and Sweden; and their united squadrons patrolled the North Sea to protect their merchantmen from the British cruisers. This approximation between the two governments was happily followed by friendly feelings between the two nations, under the pressure of a common danger. Presently Reuterholm renewed his coquetry with the French republic, which was officially recognized by the Swedish government on the 23rd of April 1795. In return, Sweden received subsidy of £56,000; and a treaty between the two powers was signed on the 14th of September 1795. On the other hand, an attempt to regain the friendship of Russia, which had broken off diplomatic relations with Sweden, was frustrated by the refusal of the king to accept the bride, the grand duchess Alexandra, Catherine II.'s granddaughter, whom Reuterholm had provided for him. This was Reuterholm's last official act. On the 1st of November 1796, in accordance with the will of his father, Gustavus IV., now in his eighteenth year, took the government into his own hands.
The government of Gustavus IV. (q.v.) was almost a pure autocracy. At his very first Riksdag, held at Norrköping in March 1800, the nobility were compelled, at last, to ratify Gustavus III.'s detested Act of Union and Security, which hitherto they had steadily refused to do. Shortly after this Riksdag rose, a notable change took place in Sweden's foreign policy. In December 1800 Denmark Sweden and Russia acceded to a second Armed Neutrality of the North, directed against Great Britain; and the arsenal of Karlskrona, in all probability, was only saved from the fate of Copenhagen by the assassination of the emperor Paul, which was followed by another change of system in the north. Hitherto Sweden had kept aloof from continental complications; but the arrest Gustavus IV. joins the European Coalition, 1804 and execution of the duc d'Enghien in 1804 inspired Gustavus IV. with such a hatred of Napoleon that when a general coalition was formed against the French emperor he was one of the first to join it (Dec. 3, 1804), pledging himself to send an army corps to co-operate with the English and Russians in driving the enemy out of Holland and Hanover. But his senseless quarrel with Frederick William III. of Prussia detained him in Pomerania; and when at last (December 1805) he led his 6000 men towards the Elbe district the third coalition had already been dissipated by the victories of Ulm and Austerlitz. In 1806 a rupture between Sweden and Prussia was only prevented by Napoleon's assault upon the latter power. After Jena Napoleon attempted to win over Sweden, but Gustavus rejected every overture. The result was the total loss of Pomerania, and the Swedish army itself was only saved from destruction by the ingenuity of J. K. Toll (q.v.). At Tilsit the emperor Alexander I. had undertaken to compel “Russia's geographical enemy,” as Napoleon designated Sweden, Russian Conquest of Finland, 1808. to accede to the newly established Continental System. Gustavus IV. naturally rejected all the proposals of Alexander to close the Baltic against the English; but took no measures to defend Finland against Russia, though, during the autumn of 1807, it was notorious that the tsar was preparing to attack the grand duchy. On the 21st of February 1808 a Russian army crossed the Finnish border without any previous declaration of war. On the 2nd of April the king ordered a general levy of 30,000 men; but while two army corps, under Armfelt and Toll, together with a British contingent of 10,000 men under Moore, were stationed in Scania and on the Norwegian border in anticipation of an attack from Denmark, which, at the instigation of Napoleon, had simultaneously declared war against Sweden, the little Finnish army was left altogether unsupported. The conquest of Finland, after an heroic struggle against overwhelming odds, is elsewhere recorded (see Finland: History). Its immediate consequence Deposition of Gustavus IV., 1809. in Sweden proper was the deposition of Gustavus IV. (March 13, 1809), who was clearly incapable of governing. The nobility took advantage of this opportunity to pay off old scores against Gustavus III. by excluding not only his unhappy son but also that son's whole family from the succession—an act of injustice which has never been adequately defended. But indeed the whole of this intermediate period is full of dark subterranean plots and counter plots, still inexplicable, as, for instance, the hideous Fersen murder (June 20, 1810) (see Fersen, Hans Axel von) evidently intended to terrorize the Gustavians, whose loyalty to the ancient dynasty was notorious. As early as the 5th of Charles XIII., 1809-1819. June 1809 the duke regent was proclaimed king, under the title of Charles XIII. (q.v.), after accepting the new liberal constitution, which was ratified by the Riksdag the same day.
The new king was, at best, a useful stopgap, in no way likely to interfere with the liberal revolution which had placed him on the throne. Peace was what the exhausted nation now required; and negotiations had already been opened at Fredrikshamn. But the Russian demands were too humiliating, and the war was resumed. But the defeats of Sävarsbruk and Ratan (Aug. 19, 1809) broke the spirit of the Swedish army; and peace was obtained by the sacrifice of Finland, the Åland islands, “the fore-posts of Stockholm,” as Napoleon rightly described them, and Vesterbotten as far as the rivers Torneå and Muonio (treaty of Fredrikshamn, Sept. 17, 1809).
The succession to the throne, for Charles XIII. was both infirm and childless, was settled, after the mysterious death (May 28, 1810) of the first elected candidate, Bernadotte chosen as Crown Prince. Prince Charles Augustus of Augustenburg, by the selection of the French marshal, Bernadotte (see Charles XIV., king of Sweden), who was adopted by Charles XIII. and received the homage of the estates on the 5th of November 1810.
The new crown prince was very soon the most popular and the most powerful man in Sweden. The infirmity of the old king, and the dissensions in the council of state, Influence and Policy of Bernadotte. placed the government and especially the control of foreign affairs almost entirely in his hands; and he boldly adopted a policy which was antagonistic indeed to the wishes and hopes of the old school of Swedish statesmen, but, perhaps, the best adapted to the circumstances. Finland he at once gave up for lost. He knew that Russia would never voluntarily relinquish the grand duchy, while Sweden could not hope to retain it permanently, even if she reconquered it. But the acquisition of Norway might make up for the loss of Finland; and Bernadotte, now known as the crown prince Charles John, argued that it might be an easy matter to persuade the anti-Napoleonic powers to punish Denmark for her loyalty to France by wresting Norway from her. Napoleon he rightly distrusted, though at first he was obliged to submit to the emperor's dictation. Thus on the 13th of November 1810, the Swedish government was forced to declare war against Great Britain, though the British government was privately informed at the same time that Sweden was not a free agent and that the war would be a mere demonstration. But the pressure of Napoleon became more and more intolerable, culminating in the occupation of Pomerania by French troops in 1812. The Swedish government thereupon concluded a secret convention with Russia (treaty of Petersburg, April 5, 1812), undertaking to send 30,000 men to operate against Napoleon in Germany in return for a promise from Alexander guaranteeing to Sweden the possession of Norway. Too late Napoleon endeavoured to outbid Alexander by offering to Sweden Finland, all Pomerania and Mecklenburg, in return for Sweden's active co-operation against Russia.
The Orebro Riksdag (April-August 1812), remarkable besides for its partial repudiation of Sweden's national debt and its reactionary press laws, introduced general conscription into Sweden, and thereby enabled the crown prince to carry out his ambitious policy. In May 1812 he mediated a peace between Russia and Turkey, so as to enable Russia to use all her forces against France (peace of Bucharest); and on the 18th of July, at Örebro, peace was also concluded between Great Britain on one side and Russia and Sweden on the other. These two treaties were, in effect, the corner-stones of a fresh coalition against Napoleon, and were confirmed on the outbreak of the Franco-Russian War by a conference between Alexander and Charles John at Åbo on the 30th of August 1812, when the tsar undertook to place an army corps of 35,000 men at the disposal of the Swedish crown prince for the conquest of Norway.
The treaty of Åbo, and indeed the whole of Charles John's foreign policy in 1812, provoked violent and justifiable criticism among the better class of politicians in Sweden. The immorality of indemnifying Sweden at the expense of a weaker friendly power was obvious; and, while Finland was now definitively sacrificed, Norway had still to be won. Moreover, Great Britain and Russia very properly insisted that Charles John's first duty was to the anti-Napoleonic coalition, the former power vigorously objecting to the expenditure of her subsidies on the nefarious Norwegian adventure before the common enemy had been crushed. Only on his very ungracious compliance did Great Britian also promise to countenance the union of Norway and Sweden (treaty of Stockholm, March 3, 1813); and, on the 23rd of April, Russia gave her guarantee to the same effect. The Swedish crown prince rendered several important services to the allies during the campaign of 1813 (see Charles XIV., king of Sweden); but, after Leipzig, he went his own way, determined at all hazards to cripple Denmark and secure Norway.
How this “job” was managed contrary to the dearest wishes of the Norwegians themselves, and how, finally (Nov. 14, Union with Norway. 1814), Norway as a free and independent kingdom was united to Sweden under a common king, is elsewhere described (see Denmark; Norway; Charles XIV., king of Sweden; Christian VIII., king of Denmark).
Charles XIII. died on the 5th of February 1818, and was succeeded by Bernadotte under the title of Charles XIV. John. The new king devoted himself to the promotion of Charles XIV., 1818-1844. the material development of the country, the Göta canal absorbing the greater portion of the twenty-four millions of dalers voted for the purpose. The external debt of Sweden was gradually extinguished, the internal debt considerably reduced, and the budget showed an average annual surplus of 700,000 dalers. With returning prosperity the necessity for internal reform became urgent in Sweden. The antiquated Riksdag, where the privileged estates predominated, while the cultivated middle class was practically unrepresented, had become an insuperable obstacle to all free development; but, though the Riksdag of 1840 itself raised the question, the king and the aristocracy refused to entertain it. Yet the reign of Charles XIV. was, on the whole, most beneficial to Sweden; and, if there was much just cause for complaint, his great services to his adopted country were generally acknowledged. Abroad he maintained a policy of peace based mainly on a good understanding with Russia. Charles XIV.'s son and successor King Oscar I. was much more liberally Oscar I., 1844-1859. inclined. Shortly after his accession (March 4, 1844) he laid several projects of reform before the Riksdag; but the estates would do little more than abolish the obsolete marriage and inheritance laws and a few commercial monopolies. As the financial situation necessitated a large increase of taxation, there was much popular discontent, which culminated in riots in the streets of Stockholm (March 1848). Yet, when fresh proposals for parliamentary reform were laid before the Riksdag in 1849, they were again rejected by three out of the four estates. As regards foreign politics, Oscar I. was strongly anti-German. On the outbreak of the Dano-Prussian War of 1848-49, Sweden sympathized warmly with Denmark. Hundreds of Swedish volunteers hastened to Schleswig-Holstein. The Riksdag voted 2,000,000 dalers for additional armaments. It was Sweden, too, who mediated the truce of Malmö (Aug. 26, 1848), which helped Denmark out of her difficulties. During the Crimean War Sweden remained neutral, although public opinion was decidedly anti-Russian, and sundry politicians regarded the conjuncture as favourable for regaining Finland.
Oscar I. was succeeded (July 8, 1859) by his son, Charles XV. (q.v.), who had already acted as regent during his father's illnesses. He succeeded, with the invaluable assistance Charles XV., 1859-1872. of the minister of justice, Baron Louis Gerhard de Geer (q.v.), in at last accomplishing the much-needed reform of the constitution. The way had been prepared in 1860 by a sweeping measure of municipal reform; and, in January 1863, the government brought in a reform bill by the terms of which the Riksdag was henceforth to consist of two chambers, the Upper House being a sort of aristocratic Constitutional Reform, 1866. senate, while the members of the Lower House were to be elected triennially by popular suffrage. The new constitution was accepted by all four estates in 1865 and promulgated on the 22nd of January 1866. On the 1st of September 1866, the first elections under the new system were held; and on the 19th of January 1867, the new Riksdag met for the first time. With this one great reform Charles XV. had to be content; in all other directions he was hampered, more or less, by his own creation. The Riksdag refused to sanction his favourite project of a reform of the Swedish army on the Prussian model, for which he laboured all his life, partly from motives of economy, partly from an apprehension of the king's martial tendencies. In 1864 Charles XV. had endeavoured to form an anti-Prussian league with Denmark; and after the defeat of Denmark he projected a Scandinavian union, in order, with the help of France, to oppose Prussian predominance in the north—a policy which naturally collapsed with the overthrow of the French Empire in 1870. He died on the 18th of September 1872, and was succeeded by his brother, the duke of Gothland, who reigned as Oscar II. (R. N. B.)
The economic condition of Sweden, owing to the progress in material prosperity which had taken place in the country as the result of the Franco-German War, was at the accession of Oscar II. to the throne on the 18th of September Oscar II., 1872-1907. 1872 fairly satisfactory. Politically, however, the outlook was not so favourable. In their results, the reforms inaugurated during the preceding reign did not answer expectations. Within three years of the introduction of the new electoral laws De Geer's ministry had forfeited much of its former popularity, and had been forced to resign. In the vital matter of national defence no common understanding had been arrived at, and during the conflicts which had raged round this question, the two chambers had come into frequent collision and paralysed the action of the government. The peasant proprietors, who, under the name of the “Landtmanna” party, formed a compact majority in the Second Chamber, pursued a consistent policy of class interests in the matter of the taxes and burdens that had, as they urged, so long oppressed the Swedish peasantry; and consequently when a bill was introduced for superseding the old system of army organization by general compulsory service, they demanded as a condition of its acceptance that the military burdens should be more evenly distributed in the country, and that the taxes, which they regarded as a burden under which they had wrongfully groaned for centuries, should be abolished. In these circumstances, the “Landtmanna” party in the Riksdag, who desired the lightening of the military burden, joined those who desired the abolition of landlordism, and formed a compact and predominant majority in the Second Chamber, while the burgher and Liberal parties were reduced to an impotent “intelligence” minority. This majority in the Lower Chamber was at once attacked by another compact majority in the Upper, who on their side maintained that the hated land taxes were only a kind of rent-charge on land, were incidental to it and in no way weighed upon the owners, and, moreover, that its abolition would be quite unwarrantable, as it was one of the surest sources of revenue to the state. On the other hand, the First Chamber refused to listen to any abolition of the old military system, so long as the defence of the country had not been placed upon a secure basis by the adoption of general compulsory military service. The government stood midway between these conflicting majorities in the chambers, without support in either.
Such was the state of affairs when Oscar II., surrounded by his late brother's advisers, began his reign. One of his first cares was to increase the strength of his navy, but in The Party Compromise of 1874. consequence of the continued antagonism of the political parties, he was unable to effect much. In the first Riksdag, however, the so-called “compromise,” which afterwards played such an important part in Swedish political life, came into existence. It originated in the small “Scania” party in the Upper House, and was devised to establish a modus vivendi between the conflicting parties, i.e. the champions of national defence and those who demanded a lightening of the burdens of taxation. The king himself perceived in the compromise a means of solving the conflicting questions, and warmly approved it. He persuaded his ministers to constitute a special inquiry into the proposed abolition of land taxes, and in the address with which he opened the Riksdag of 1875 laid particular stress upon the necessity of giving attention to the settlement of these two burning questions, and in 1880 again came forward with a new proposal for increasing the number of years of service with the militia. This motion having been rejected, De Geer resigned, and was succeeded by Count Arvid Posse. The new prime minister endeavoured to solve the question of defence in accordance with the views of the “Landtmanna” party. Three parliamentary committees had prepared schemes for a remission of the land taxes, for a new system of taxation, for a reorganization of the army based on a stammtrupp (regular army), by the enlistment of hired soldiers, and for naval reforms. In this last connexion the most suitable types of vessels for coast defence as for offence were determined upon. But Count Posse, deserted by his own party over the army bill, resigned, and was succeeded on the 16th of May 1884 by Oscar Themptauder, who had been minister of finance in the previous cabinet. The new premier succeeded in persuading the Riksdag to pass a bill increasing the period of service with the colours in the army to six years and that in the militia to forty-two days, and as a set-off a remission of 30% on the land taxes.
Influenced by the economic reaction which took place in 1879 in consequence of the state of affairs in Germany, Where Prince Bismarck had introduced the protectionist system, a Protectionist Movement. protectionist party had been formed, which tried to gain adherents in the Riksdag. It is true that in the Riksdag of 1882 the commercial treaty with France was renewed, but since 1885 the protectionist party was prepared to begin the combat, and a duty on corn, which had been proposed in the Riksdag of the same year, was rejected by only a slight majority. During the period of the unusually low price of corn of 1886, which greatly affected the Swedish farmers, protection gained ground to such an extent that its final triumph was considered as certain within a short time. During the Riksdag of the same year, however, the premier, Themptauder, emphatically declared himself against the protectionist party, and while the parties in the Second Chamber were equal in number, the proposed tax on corn was rejected in the First Chamber. In the Riksdag of 1887 there was a majority for protection in the Second Chamber, and in the first the majority against the tax was so small that the tax on corn would have triumphed in a combined meeting of the two chambers. The government, availing itself of its formal right not to dissolve the chamber in which it had the support of a majority, therefore dissolved only the Second Chamber (March 1887).
The new Riksdag assembled in May with a free trade majority in the Second Chamber, but nothing in connexion with the great question of customs was settled. In the meantime, the powerful majority in the Second Chamber split into two groups—the new “Landtmanna” party, which approved protection in the interests of agricultural classes; and a somewhat smaller group, the old “Landtmanna” party, which favoured free trade.
The victory of the free traders was not, however, destined to be of long duration, as the protectionists obtained a majority in both chambers in the next Riksdag (1888). To the First Chamber protectionists were almost exclusively elected, and in the Second all the twenty-two members for Stockholm were disqualified, owing to one of their number not having paid his taxes a few years previously, which prevented his being eligible. Instead, then, of twenty-two free traders representing the majority of the Stockholm electors, twenty-two protectionists, representing the minority, were elected, and Stockholm was thus represented in the Riksdag by the choice of a minority in the capital. This singular way of electing members for the principal city in the kingdom could not fail further to irritate the parties. One result of the Stockholm election came at a convenient time for the Themptauder ministry. The financial affairs of the country were found to be in a most unsatisfactory state. In spite of reduced expenses, a highly estimated revenue, and the contemplated raising of taxes, there was a deficit, for the payment or discharge of which the government would be obliged to demand supplementary supplies. The Themptauder ministry resigned. The king retained, however, for a time several members of the ministry, but it was difficult to find a premier who would be able, during the transition from one system to another, to command sufficient authority to control the parties. At last Baron Gillis Bildt, who, while Swedish ambassador in Berlin, had witnessed the introduction by Prince Bismarck of the agrarian protectionist system in Germany, accepted the premiership, and it was under his auspices that the two chambers imposed a series of duties on necessaries of life. The new taxes, together with an increase of the excise duty on spirits, soon brought a surplus into the state coders. At a council of state (Oct. 12, 1888) the king declared his wishes as to the way in which this surplus should be used. He desired that it should be applied to a fund for insurance and old age pensions for workmen and old people, to the lightening of the municipal taxes by state contributions to the schools and workhouses, to the abolition of the land taxes and of the obligation of keeping a horse and man for military service, and, lastly, to the improvement of the shipping trade; but the Riksdag decided to devote it to other objects, such as the payment of the deficit in the budget, the building of railways and augmentation of their material, as well as to improvements in the defences of the country.
Baron Bildt resigned as soon as the new system seemed settled, making room for Baron Gustav Akerhjelm. The latter, however, also soon resigned, and was succeeded on the 10th of July 1891 by Erik Gustav Boström, a landed proprietor. The protectionist system gained in favour on the expiry of the commercial treaty with France in 1892, as it could now be extended to articles of industry. The elections of 1890, when the metropolis returned free traders and Liberals to the Second Chamber, certainly effected a change in the latter, as the representatives of the towns and the old “Landtmanna” party joined issue and established a free-trade majority in the chamber, but in the combined meetings of the two chambers the compact protectionist majority in the First Chamber turned the scale. The customs duties were, however, altered several times in accordance with market prices and ruling circumstances. Thus in 1892, when the import duty on unground corn was reduced from 2s. 10d. to 1s. 5d., and that on ground corn from 4s. 9d. to 2s. 10d. for 100 kilogrammes, the same duties were also retained for the following year. They were also retained for 1894 at the request of the government, which desired to keep faith with their promise that while the new organization of the army was going on no increase of duties on the necessaries of life should take place. This measure caused much dissatisfaction, and gave rise to a strong agrarian movement, in consequence of which the government, in the beginning of 1895, before the assembling of the Riksdag, made use of its right of raising the two duties on corn just referred to, 3s. 7d. and 7s. 2d., which were afterwards somewhat reduced as far as seed corn for sowing purposes was concerned.
The question of customs duties now settled, that of national defence was taken up afresh, and in the following year the government produced a complete scheme for the National Defence. abolition of the land tax in the course of ten years, in exchange for a compensation of ninety days' drill for those liable to military service, proposed to retain the old military system of the country and to strengthen the defences of Norrland, and the government bill for a reorganization of the army was accepted by the Riksdag in an extraordinary session. But it was soon perceived that the new plan was unsatisfactory and required recasting, upon which the minister of war, Baron Rappe, resigned, and was succeeded by Colonel von Crustebjorn, who immediately set to work to prepare a complete reorganization of the army, with an increase of the time of active service on the lines of general compulsory service. The Riksdag of 1900, in addition to grants for the fortifications at Boden, in the province of Norrbotten, on the Russian border, and other military objects, voted a considerable grant for an experimental mobilization, which fully exposed the defects and faults of the old system. In the Riksdag of 1901 E. G. Boström resigned, and was succeeded by Admiral F. W. von Otter, who introduced a new bill for the army reorganization, the most important item of which was the increase of the period of training to 365 days. The cost in connexion with the new scheme was expected to amount to 22 millions of kronor. The Riksdag, however, did not accept the new plan in its full extent. The time of drilling was reduced to 240 days for the infantry, to 300 days for the navy, while for the cavalry and artillery the time fixed was 365 days. The plan, thus modified, was then accepted by the government.
After the elections in 1890, the alliance already mentioned between the old “Landtmanna” party and the representatives of the towns had the result that the Liberals in the Franchise Reform. Second Chamber, to whom the representatives of the towns mostly belonged, were now in a position to decide the policy which the two united parties should follow. In order to prevent this, it was proposed to readjust the number of the members of the Riksdag. The question was only settled in 1894, when a bill was passed fixing the number of the members of the Riksdag in the First Chamber at 150, and in the Second at 230, of which 150 should represent the country districts and 80 the towns. The question of protection being now considered settled, there was no longer any reason for the continued separation of the two “Landtmanna” parties, who at the beginning of the Riksdag of 1895 joined issue and became once more a compact majority in the Second Chamber, as they had been up to the Riksdag of May 1887. The influence of the country representatives was thus re-established in the Second Chamber, but now the demands for the extension of the franchise came more and more to the front, and the premier, Boström, at last felt bound to do something to meet these demands. He accordingly introduced in the Riksdag of 1896 a very moderate bill for the extension of the franchise, which was, nevertheless, rejected by both chambers, all similar proposals by private members meeting the same fate. When at last the bill for the reorganization of the army, together with a considerably increased taxation, was accepted by the Riksdag of 1901, it was generally acknowledged that, in return for the increased taxation, it would only be just to extend the right of taking part in the political life and the legislative work of the country to those of the population who hitherto had been excluded from it. The government eventually laid a proposal for the extension of the franchise before the Riksdag of 1902, the chief feature of which was that the elector should be twenty-five years of age, and that married men over forty years should be entitled to two votes. The Riksdag, however, finally agreed to a proposal by Bishop Billing, a member of the First Chamber, that an address should be presented to the king asking for a full inquiry into the question of extending the franchise for the election of members to the Second Chamber.
In 1897 the Riksdag had received among its members the first socialistic representative in the person of R. H. Brauting, the leader of the Swedish Social Democrats. The Labour Movement. Socialists, who had formerly confined their activity to questions affecting the working classes and their wages, took, however, in 1902 an active part in the agitation for the extension of the franchise. Processions of many thousands of workmen were organized, in Stockholm and in other towns of the kingdom, just before the Riksdag began the discussion on the above-mentioned bill of the government, and when the bill was introduced in the chambers a general and well organized strike took place and continued during the three days the debate on the bill lasted. As this strike was of an exclusively political kind, and was intended to put pressure on the chambers, it was generally disapproved, and failed in its object. The prime minister, Admiral von Otter, resigned shortly after the end of the session, and was succeeded by Boström, the ex premier, who at the request of the king again assumed office.
The relations with Norway during King Oscar's reign had great influence on political life in Sweden, and more than once it seemed as if the union between the two countries was on the point of being wrecked. The dissensions Relations with Norway. chiefly had their origin in the demand by Norway for separate consuls and foreign ministers, to which reference is made under Norway. At last, after vain negotiations and discussions, the Swedish government in 1895 gave notice to Norway that the commercial treaty which till then had existed between the two countries and would lapse in July 1897 would, according to a decision in the Riksdag, cease, and as Norway at the time had raised the customs duties, a considerable diminution in the exports of Sweden to Norway took place. The Swedish minister of foreign affairs, Count Lewenhaupt, who was considered as too friendly disposed towards the Norwegians, resigned, and was replaced by Count Ludvig Douglas, who represented the opinion of the majority in the First Chamber. When, however, the Norwegian Storthing, for the third time, passed a bill for a national or “pure” flag, which King Oscar eventually sanctioned, Count Douglas resigned in his turn and was succeeded by the Swedish minister at Berlin, Lagerheim, who managed to pilot the questions of the union into more quiet waters. He succeeded all the better as the new elections to the Riksdag of 1900 showed clearly that the Swedish people was not inclined to follow the ultraconservative or so-called “patriotic” party, which resulted in the resignation of the two leaders of that party, Professor Oscar Alin and Count Marschal Patrick Reutersvard as members of the First Chamber. On the other hand, ex-Professor E. Carlson, of the High School of Gothenburg, succeeded in forming a party of Liberals and Radicals to the number of about 90 members, who, besides being in favour of the extension of the franchise, advocated the full equality of Norway with Sweden in the management of foreign affairs. (O. H. D.)
The state of quietude which for some time prevailed with regard to the relations with Norway was not, however, to be of long duration. The question of separate consuls The Dissolution of the Union with Norway. for Norway soon came up again. In 1902 the Swedish government proposed that negotiations in this matter should be opened with the Norwegian government, and that a joint committee, consisting of representatives from both countries, should be appointed to consider the question of a separate consular service without in any way interfering with the existing administration of the diplomatic affairs of the two countries. The result of the negotiations was published in a so-called “communiqué,” dated the 24th of March 1903, in which, among other things, it was proposed that the relations of the separate consuls to the joint ministry of foreign affairs and the embassies should be arranged by identical laws, which could not be altered or repealed without the consent of the governments of the two countries. The proposal for these identical laws, which the Norwegian government in May 1904 submitted, did not meet with the approval of the Swedish government. The latter in their reply proposed that the Swedish foreign minister should have such control over the Norwegian consuls as to prevent the latter from exceeding their authority. This proposal, however, the Norwegian government found unacceptable, and explained that, if such control were insisted upon, all further negotiations would be purposeless. They maintained that the Swedish demands were incompatible with the sovereignty of Norway, as the foreign minister was a Swede and the proposed Norwegian consular service, as a Norwegian institution, could not be placed under a foreign authority. A new proposal by the Swedish government was likewise rejected, and in February 1905 the Norwegians broke off the negotiations. Notwithstanding this an agreement did not appear to be out of the question. All efforts to solve the consular question by itself had failed, but it was considered that an attempt might be made to establish separate consuls in combination with a joint administration of diplomatic affairs on a full unionistic basis. Crown Prince Gustaf, who during the illness of King Oscar was appointed regent, took the initiative of renewing the negotiations between the two countries, and on the 5th of April in a combined Swedish and Norwegian council of state made a proposal for a reform both of the administration of diplomatic affairs and of the consular service on the basis of full equality between the two kingdoms, with the express reservation, however, of a joint foreign minister—Swedish or Norwegian—as a condition for the existence of the union. This proposal was approved of by the Swedish Riksdag on the 3rd of May 1905. In order that no obstacles should be placed in the way for renewed negotiations, Mr Boström, the prime minister, resigned and was succeeded by Mr Ramstedt. The proposed negotiations were not, however, renewed.
On the 23rd of May the Norwegian Storthing passed the government's proposal for the establishment of separate Norwegian consuls, and as King Oscar, who again had resumed the reins of government, made use of his constitutional right to veto the bill, the Norwegian ministry tendered their resignation. The king, however, declared he could not now accept their resignation whereupon the ministry at a sitting of the Norwegian Storthing on the 7th of June placed their resignation in its hands. The Storthing thereupon unanimously adopted a resolution stating that, as the king had declared himself unable to form a government, the constitutional royal power “ceased to be operative,” whereupon the ministers were requested, until further instructions, to exercise the power vested in the king, and as King Oscar thus had ceased to act as “the king of Norway,” the union with Sweden was in consequence dissolved.
In Sweden, where they were least of all prepared for the turn things had taken, the action of the Storthing created the greatest surprise and resentment. The king solemnly protested against what had taken place and summoned The First Extraordinary Riksdag, 1907. an extraordinary session of the Riksdag for the 20th of June to consider what measures should be taken with regard to the question of the union, which had arisen suddenly through the revolt of the Norwegians on the 7th of June. The Riksdag declared that it was not opposed to negotiations being entered upon regarding the conditions for the dissolution of the union if the Norwegian Storthing, after a new election, made a proposal for the repeal of the Act of Union between the two countries, or, if a proposal to this effect was made by Norway after the Norwegian people, through a plebiscite, had declared in favour of the dissolution of the union. The Riksdag further resolved that 100 million kroner (about £555,000) should be held in readiness and be available as the Riksdag might decide. On the resignation of the Ramstedt ministry Mr Lundeberg formed a coalition ministry consisting of members of the various parties in the Riksdag, after which the Riksdag was prorogued on the 3rd of August.
After the plebiscite in Norway on the 13th of August had decided in favour of the dissolution of the union and after the Storthing had requested the Swedish government to The Karlstad Convention. co-operate with it for the repeal of the Act of Union, a conference of delegates from both countries was convened at Karlstad on the 31st of August. On the 23rd of September the delegates came to an agreement, the principal points of which were: that such disputes between the two countries which could not be settled by direct diplomatic negotiations, and which did not affect the vital interests of either country, should be referred to the permanent court of arbitration at the Hague, that on either side of the southern frontier a neutral zone of about fifteen kilometres width should be established, and that within eight months the fortifications within the Norwegian part of the zone should be destroyed. Other clauses dealt with the rights of the Laplanders to graze their reindeer alternatively in either country, and with the question of transport of goods across the frontier by rail or other means of communication, so that the traffic should not be hampered by any import or export prohibitions or otherwise.
From the 2nd to the 19th of October the extraordinary Riksdag was again assembled, and eventually approved of the arrangement come to by the delegates at Karlstad with regard to the dissolution of the union as well as the government proposal for the repeal of The Second Extraordinary Riksdag. the Act of Union and the recognition of Norway as an independent state. An alteration in the Swedish flag was also decided upon, by which the mark of union was to be replaced by an azure-blue square. An offer from the Norwegian Storthing to elect a prince of the Swedish royal house as king in Norway was declined by King Oscar, who now on behalf of himself and his successors renounced the right to the Norwegian crown. Mr Lundeberg, who had accepted office only to settle the question of the dissolution of the union, now resigned and was succeeded by a Liberal government with Mr Karl Staaff as prime minister.
The question of the extension of the franchise, which was a burning one, was to be the principal measure of the Staaff government. It brought in a bill for manhood suffrage at elections for the Second Chamber, together with single member constituencies and The Franchise Question. election on the absolute majority principle. The bill was passed by the Second Chamber on the 15th of May 1906, by 134 to 94 votes, but it was rejected by the First Chamber by 126 to 18. The latter chamber instead passed a bill for manhood suffrage at elections for the Second Chamber, on the condition that the elections for both chambers should take place on the basis of proportional representation. Both chambers thereupon decided to ask the opinion of the king with regard to the simultaneous extension of the franchise to women at elections for the Second Chamber. The government bill having, however, been passed by the Second Chamber, the prime minister proposed to the king that the Riksdag should be dissolved and new elections for the Second Chamber take place in order to hear the opinion of the country, but as the king did not approve of this Mr Staaff and his government resigned.
A Conservative government was then formed on the 29th of May by Mr Lindman, whose principal task was to find a solution of the suffrage question which both chambers could accept. A government bill was introduced, proposing the settlement of the question on the basis of the bill carried by the First Chamber in the Riksdag of the preceding year. A compromise, approved of by the government, was adopted by the First Chamber on the 14th of May 1907 by 110 votes against 29 and in the Second Chamber by 128 against 98. By this act proportional representation was established for both chambers, together with universal manhood suffrage at elections for the Second Chamber, a reduction of the qualifications for eligibility for the First Chamber and a reduction of the electoral term of this chamber from nine to six years, and finally payment of members of the First Chamber, who hitherto had not received any such emolument.
King Oscar II. died on the 9th of December 1907, sincerely regretted by his people, and was succeeded as king of Sweden by his eldest son, Prince Gustaf. During King Oscar’s reign many important social reforms were carried out by the legislature, and the country developed in all directions. In the Riksdag of 1884 a new patent law was adopted, the age at which women should be held to attain their majority was fixed at twenty-one years and the barbarous prison punishment of “bread and water” abolished. In order to meet the cost of the new army organization the Riksdag of 1902 increased the revenue by progressive taxation, but only for one year. Bills for the improvement of the social conditions of the people and in the interests of the working classes were also passed. During the five years 1884–1889 a committee was occupied with the question of workmen’s insurance, and thrice the government made proposals for its settlement, on the last occasion adopting the principle of invalidity as a common basis for insurance against accidents, illness or old age. The Riksdag, however, delayed coming to a decision, and contented itself by earmarking money for an insurance fund. At last the Riksdag of 1901 accepted a Bill for insurance against accidents which also extended to agricultural labourers, in connexion with the establishment of a state institution for insurance. The bill for protection against accidents, as well as for the limitation of working hours for women and children, was passed, together with one for the appointment of special factory inspectors. When in 1897 King Oscar celebrated his jubilee of twenty-five years as king, the exhibition which had been organized in Stockholm offered a convincing proof of the progress the country had made in every direction.
Authorities.—Historiska handlingar rörande Skandinaviens
historia (Stockholm, 1816–1897, &c.); Svenska Riksdagsakter, 1521–1718
(ibid., 1887); Sveriges historia (ibid., 1883–1887); P. Backström,
Svenska flottans historia (ibid., 1884); R. N. Bain, Scandinavia,
1513–1900 (Cambridge, 1905); Bidrag til den store nordiske krigs
historie (Copenhagen, 1900); F. F. Carlson, Sveriges historie under
konungarne af Pfalziska Huset (Stockholm, 1883–1888); A. Fryxell,
Berǎttelser ur svenska historien (ibid., 1831, &c.); C. Grandinson,
Studier i hanseatisk svensk historia (ibid., 1884); C. G. Malmström,
Sveriges politiska historia (ibid., 1893–1901); A. Nyström,
Striderna i östra Europa mellan Ryssland, Polen och Sverige
(ibid., 1903); E. Seraphim, Geschichte Liv- Est- und Kurlands
bis zur Einverleibung in das russische Reich (Reval, 1895);
C. Silfverstolpe, Historiskt bibliothek (Stockholm, 1875); R. Tengberg,
Sverige under partihvalvet (ibid., 1879
;) K. G. Westman,
Svenska Rådets historia (Upsala, 1904); Bidrag till Sveriges
medeltids historia (Upsala, 1902); A. Szelagowski, The Fight
for the Baltic (Pol.; Warsaw, 1904); K. Setterwall, Förteckning öfver
Acta Svecica (Stockholm, 1889); J. Mankell, Öfversigt af svenska
krigens historia (ibid., 1890); A. Strindberg, Les Rélations de la
France avec la Suède (Paris, 1891); Pontus E. Fahlbeck, La Constitution
suédoise et le parlementarisme moderne (1905); E. Flandin, Institutions
politiques de l’Europe contemporaine (1909), tome iv. See also
the bibliographies attached to the articles Denmark: History;
Norway: History; Finland: History; as well as the special bibliographies
attached to the various biographies of Swedish sovereigns
Swedish literature, as distinguished from compositions in the common norraena tunga of old Scandinavia, cannot be said to exist earlier than the 13th century. Nor until the period of the Reformation was its development in any degree rapid or copious. The oldest form in which Swedish exists as a written language (see Scandinavian Language) is the series of manuscripts known as Landskapslagarne, or “The Common Laws.” These are supposed to be the relics of a still earlier age, and it is hardly believed that we even possess the first that was put down in writing. The most important and the most ancient of these codes is the “Elder West Göta Law,” reduced to its present form by the law-man Eskil about 1230. Another of great interest is Magnus Eriksson’s “General Common Law,” which was written in 1347. These ancient codes have been collected and edited by the learned jurist, K. J. Schlyter (1795–1888) as Corpus juris Sveo-Gotorum antiqui (4 vols., 1827–1869). The chief ornament of medieval Swedish literature is Um styrilse kununga ok höfdinga (“On the Conduct of Kings and Princes”), first printed by command of Gustavus II. Adolphus, in 1634. The writer is not known; it has been conjecturally dated 1325. It is a handbook of moral and political teaching, expressed in terse and vigorous language. St Bridget, or Birgitta (1303–1373), an historical figure of extraordinary interest, has left her name attached to several important religious works, in particular to a collection of Uppenbarelser (“Revelations”), in which her visions and ecstatic meditations are recorded, and a version, the first into Swedish, of the five books of Moses. This latter was undertaken, at her desire, by her father-confessor Mattias (d. 1350), a priest at Linköping. The translation of the Bible was continued a century later by a monk named Johannes Budde (d. 1484).
In verse the earliest Swedish productions were probably the folk-song. The age of these, however, has been commonly exaggerated. It is doubtful whether any still exist which are as old, in their present form, as the 13th century. The bulk are now attributed to the 15th, and many are doubtless much later still. The last, such as “Axel och Valborg,” “Liten Karin,” “Kämpen Grimborg,” and “Habor och Signild,” deal with the adventures of romantic medieval romance. Almost the only positive clue we hold to the date of these poems is the fact that one of the most characteristic of them, “Engelbrekt,” was written by Thomas, bishop of Strengnäs, who died in 1443. Thomas, who left other poetical pieces, is usually called the first Swedish poet. There are three rhyming chronicles in medieval Swedish, all anonymous. The earliest, Erikskronikan, is attributed to 1320; the romance of Karl Magnus, Nya Karlskrönikan, describing the period between 1387 and 1452, which is sometimes added to the earlier work, dates from the middle of the 15th century; and the third, Sturekrönikorna, was probably written about 1500. The collection of rhymed romances which bears the name of Queen Euphemia's Songs must have been written before the death of the Norwegian queen in 1312. They are versions of three medieval stories taken from French and German sources, and dealt with the Chevalier au lion, of Chrestien de Troyes, with Duke Frederick of Normandy, and with Flores and Blancheflor. They possess very slight poetic merit in their Swedish form. A little later the romance of King Alexander was translated by, or at the command of, Bo Jonsson Grip; this is more meritorious. Bishop Thomas, who died in 1443, wrote many political songs; and a number of narrative poems date from the close of the century. A brilliant and pathetic relic of the close of the medieval period exists in the Love Letters addressed in 1498 by Ingrid Persdotter, a nun of Vadstena, to the young knight Axel Nilsson. The first book printed in the Swedish language appeared in 1495.
The 16th century added but little to Swedish literature, and that little is mostly connected with the newly-founded university of Upsala. The Renaissance scarcely made itself felt in Scandinavia, and even the Reformation failed to waken the genius of the country. Psalms and didactic spiritual poems were the main products of Swedish letters in the 16th century. Two writers, the brothers Petri, sons of a smith at Orebro, take an easy prominence in so barren a period. Olaus Petri (1493–1552) and The Petri. Laurentius Petri (1499–1573) were Carmelite monks who adopted the Lutheran doctrine while studying at Wittenberg, and came back to Sweden in 1518 as the apostles of the new faith. Olaus, who is one of the noblest figures in Swedish annals, was of the executive rather than the meditative class. He became chancellor to Gustavus Vasa, but his reforming zeal soon brought him into disgrace, and in 1540 he was condemned to death. Two years later he was pardoned, and allowed to resume his preaching in Stockholm. He found time, however, to write a Swedish Chronicle, which is the earliest prose history of Sweden, a mystery-play, Tobiae comedia, which is the first Swedish drama, and three psalm-books, the best known being published in 1530 under the title of Någre gudhelige vijsor (“Certain Divine Songs”). His Chronicle was based on a number of sources, in the treatment of which he showed a discrimination which makes the work still useful. Laurentius Petri, who was a man of calmer temperament, was archbishop of all Sweden, and edited or superintended the translation of the Bible published at Upsala in 1540. He also wrote many psalms. Laurentius Andreae, 1552, had previously prepared a translation of the New Testament, which appeared in 1526. He was a polemical writer of prominence on the side of the Reformers. Finally, Petrus Niger (Peder Svart), bishop of Vesterås (d. 1562), wrote a chronicle of the life of Gustavus I. up to 1533, in excellent prose. The same writer left unpublished a history of the bishops of Vesterås, his predecessors. The latter half of the 16th century is a blank in Swedish literature.
With the accession of Charles IX., and the consequent development of Swedish greatness, literature began to assert itself in more vigorous forms. The long life of the royal librarian, Johannes Bure or Buraeus (1568–1652), formed a link between the age of the Petri and that of Stjernhjelm. Buraeus studied all the sciences then known to mankind, Buraeus. and confounded them all in a sort of Rabbinical cultus of his own invention, a universal philosophy in a multitude of unreadable volumes. But he was a patient antiquary, and advanced the knowledge of ancient Scandinavian mythology and language very considerably. He awakened curiosity and roused a public sympathy with letters; nor was it without significance that two of the greatest Swedes of the century, Gustavus Adolphus and the poet Stjernhjelm, were his pupils. The reign of Charles IX. saw the rise of secular drama in Sweden. The first comedy was the Tisbe of Magnus Olai Asteropherus (d. 1647), a coarse but witty piece on the story of Pyramus and Thisbe, acted by the schoolboys of the college of Arboga in 1610. This play is the Ralph Roister Doister of Swedish literature. A greater dramatist was Johannes Messenius (1579–1636), who was the son of a miller near Vadstena and had been carefully educated abroad by the Jesuits. Being discovered plotting against the government during the absence of Gustavus in Russia, he was condemned to imprisonment for life—that is, for twenty years. Before this disaster he had been professor of jurisprudence in Upsala, where his first historical comedy Disa was performed in 1611 and the tragedy of Signill in 1612. The design of Messenius was to write the history of his country in fifty plays; he completed and produced six. These dramas are not particularly well arranged, but they form a little body of theatrical literature of singular interest and value. Messenius was a genuine poet; the lyrics he introduces have something of the charm of the old ballads. He wrote abundantly in prison; his magnum opus was a history of Sweden in Latin, but he has also left, in Swedish, two important rhyme-chronicles. Messenius was imitated by a little crowd of playwrights. Nikolaus Holgeri Catonius (d. 1655) wrote a fine tragedy on the Trojan War, Troijenborgh, in which he excelled Messenius as a dramatist. Andreas Prytz, who died in 1655 as bishop of Linköping, produced several religious chronicle plays from Swedish history. Jacobus Rondeletius (d. 1662) wrote a curious “Christian tragi-comedy” of Judas redivivus, which contains some amusing scenes from daily Swedish life. Another good play was an anonymous Holofernes and Judith (edited at Upsala, 1895, by O. Sylwan). These plays were all acted by schoolboys and university youths, and when they went out of fashion among these classes the drama in Sweden almost entirely ceased to exist. Two historians of the reign of Charles IX., Erik Göransson Tegel (d. 1636) and Aegidius Girs (d. 1639), deserve mention. The chancellor Magnus Gabriel de la Gardie (1622–1686) did much to promote the study of Swedish antiquities. He founded the College of Antiquities at Upsala in 1667, and bought back the Gothic Codex argenteus which he presented to the university library.
The reign of Gustavus Adolphus was adorned by one great writer, the most considerable in all the early history of Sweden. The title of “the Father of Swedish poetry” has been universally awarded to Göran Lilja, better known by his adopted name of Georg Stjernhjelm (q.v.; 1598–1672). Stjernhjelm. Stjernhjelm was a man of almost universal attainment, but it is mainly in verse that he has left his stamp upon the literature of his country. He found the language rough and halting, and he moulded it into perfect smoothness and elasticity. His master, Buraeus, had written a few Swedish hexameters by way of experiment. Stjernhjelm took the form and made it national.
The claim of Stjernhjelm to be the first Swedish poet may be contested by a younger man, but a slightly earlier writer, Gustaf Rosenhane (1619-1684), who was a reformer Rosenhane. on quite other lines. If Stjernhjelm studied Opitz, Rosenhane took the French poets of the Renaissance for his models, and in 1650 wrote a cycle of one hundred sonnets, the earliest in the language; these were published under the title Venerid in 1680. Rosenhane printed in 1658 a “Complaint of the Swedish Language” in thirteen hundred rattling rhyming lines, and in 1682 collection of eighty songs. He was a metrist of the artistic order, skilful, learned and unimpassioned. His zeal for the improvement of the literature of his country was beyond question. Most of the young poets, however, followed Stjernhjelm rather than Rosenhane. As personal friends and pupils of the former, the brothers Columbus deserve special attention. They were sons of a musician and poet, Jonas Columbus (1586-1663). Each wrote copiously in verse, but Johan (1640-1684), who was professor of poetry at Upsala, almost entirely in Latin, while Samuel (1642-1679), especially in his Odae sveticae, showed himself an apt and fervid imitator of the Swedish hexameters of Stjernhjelm, to whom he was at one time secretary, and whose Hercules he dramatized. His works were included by P. Hanselli in vol. ii. of Samlade vitterhets arbeten, &c.
Of a rhyming family of Hjärne, it is enough to mention one member, Urban Hjärne (1641-1724), who introduced the new form of classical tragedy from France, in a species of transition from the masques of Stjernhjelm to the later regular rhymed dramas. His best play was a Rosimunda. Lars Johansson (1642-1674), who called himself “Lucidor the Unfortunate,” has been the subject of a whole tissue of romance, most of which is fabulous. It is true, however, that he was stabbed, like Marlowe, in a midnight brawl at a tavern. His poems were posthumously collected as Flowers of Helicon, Plucked and Distributed on various occasions by Lucidor the Unfortunate. Stripped of the myth which had attracted so much attention to his name, Lucidor proves to be an occasional rhymester of a very low order. Haquin Spegel (1645-1714), the famous archbishop of Upsala, wrote a long didactic epic in alexandrines, God's Labour and Rest, with an introductory ode to the Deity in rhymed hexameters. He was also a good writer of hymns. Another ecclesiastic, the bishop of Skara, Jesper Svedberg (1653-1735), wrote sacred verses, but is better remembered as the father of Swedenborg. Peter Lagerlöf (1648-1699) cultivated a pastoral vein in his ingenious lyrics Elisandra and Lycillis; he was professor of poetry, that is to say, of the art of writing Latin verses, at Upsala. Olof Wexionius (1656-1690?) published his Sinne-Afvel, a collection of graceful miscellaneous pieces, in 1684, in an edition of only 100 copies. Its existence was presently forgotten, and the name of Wexionius had dropped out of the history of literature, when Hanselli recovered a copy and reprinted its contents in 1863.
We have hitherto considered only the followers of Stjernhjelm; we have now to speak of an important writer who followed in the footsteps of Rosenhane. Gunno Eurelius, Dahlstjerna afterwards ennobled with the name of Dahlstjerna (q.v.; 1661-1709), early showed an interest in the poetry of Italy. In 1690 he translated Guarini's Pastor Fido, and in or just after 1697 published, in a folio volume without a date, his Kunga-Skald, the first original poem in ottava rima produced in Swedish. This is a bombastic and vainglorious epic in honour of Charles XI., whom Eurelius adored; it is not, however, without great merits, richness of language, flowing metre, and the breadth of a genuine poetic enthusiasm. He published a little collection of lamentable sonnets when his great master died. Johan Paulinus Liljenstedt (1655-1732), a Finn, was a graceful imitator of Ronsard and Guarini. Johan Runius (1679-1713), called the “Prince of Poets,” published a collection entitled Dudaim, in which there is nothing to praise, and with him the generation of the 17th century closes. Talent had been shown by certain individuals, but no healthy school of Swedish poetry had been founded, and the latest imitators of Stjernhjelm had lost every vestige of taste and independence.
In prose the 17th century produced but little of importance in Sweden. Gustavus Adolphus (1594-1632) was the most polished writer of its earlier half, and his speeches take an important place in the development of the Rudbeck. language. The most original mind of the next age was Olof Rudbeck (1630-1702), the famous author of Atland eller Manhem. He spent nearly all his life in Upsala, building anatomical laboratories, conducting musical concerts, laying out botanical gardens, arranging medical lecture rooms—in a word, expending ceaseless energy on the practical improvement of the university. He was a genius in all the known branches of learning; at twenty-three his physiological discoveries had made him famous throughout Europe. His Atland (or Atlantika) appeared in four folio volumes, in Latin and Swedish, in 1675-1698; it was an attempt to summon all the authority of the past, all the sages of Greece and the bards of Iceland, to prove the inherent and indisputable greatness of the Swedish nation, in which the fabulous Atlantis had been at last discovered. It was the literary expression of the majesty of Charles XI., and of his autocratical dreams for the destiny of Sweden. From another point of view it is a monstrous hoard or cairn of rough-hewn antiquarian learning, now often praised, sometimes quoted from, and never read. Olof Verelius (1618-1682) had led the way for Rudbeck, by his translations of Icelandic sagas, a work which was carried on with greater intelligence by Johan Peringskjöld (1654-1720), the editor of the Heimskringla (1697), and J. Hadorph (1630-1693). The French philosopher Descartes, who died at Christina's court at Stockholm in 1650, found his chief, though posthumous, disciple in Andreas Rydelius (1671-1738), bishop of Lund, who was the master of Dalin, and thus connects us with the next epoch. His chief work, Nödiga förnuftsöfningar . . . (5 vols.) appeared in 1718. Charles XII., under whose special patronage Rydelius wrote, was himself a meta physician and physiologist of merit.
A much more brilliant period followed the death of Charles XII. The influence of France and England took the place of that of Germany and Italy. The taste of Louis XIV., tempered by the study of Addison and Pope, gave its tone to the academical court of Queen Louise Ulrica, who founded in 1758 the academy of literature, which developed later into the academy of literature, history and antiquities.
Sweden became completely a slave to the periwigs of literature, to the unities and graces of classical France. Nevertheless this was a period of great intellectual stimulus and activity, and Swedish literature took a solid shape for the first time. This Augustan period in Sweden closed somewhat abruptly about 1765. Two writers in verse connect it with the school of the preceding century. Jacob Frese (1692?-1728?), a Finn, whose poems were published in 1726, was an elegiacal writer of much grace, who foreshadowed the idyllic manner of Creutz. Atterbom pronounces Frese the best Swedish poet between Stjernhjelm and Dalin. Samuel von Triewald (1688-1743) played a very imperfect Dryden to Dalin's Pope. He was the first Swedish satirist, and introduced Boileau to his countrymen. His Satire upon our Stupid Poets may still be read with entertainment. Both in verse and prose Olof von Dalin Dalin. (q.v.; 1708-1763) takes a higher place than any writer since Stjernhjelm. He was inspired by the study of his great English contemporaries. His Swedish Argus (1733-1734) was modelled on Addison's Spectator, his Thoughts about Critics (1736) on Pope's Essay on Criticism, his Tale of a Horse on Swift's Tale of a Tub. Dalin's style, whether in prose or verse, was of a finished elegance. As a prose writer Dalin is chiefly memorable for his History of the Swedish Kingdom (4 vols., 1746–1762). His great epic, Swedish Freedom (1742) was Written in alexandrines of far greater smoothness and vigour than had previously been attempted. When in 1737 the new Royal Swedish Theatre was opened, Dalin led the way to a new school of dramatists with his Brynhilda, a regular tragedy in the style of Crébillon père. In his comedy of The Envious Man he introduced the manner of Molière, or more properly that of Holberg. His songs, his satires, his occasional pieces, without displaying any real originality, show Dalin's tact and skill as a workman with the pen. He stole from England and France, but with the plagiarism of a man of genius; and his multifarious labours raised Sweden to a level with the other literary countries of Europe. They formed a basis upon which more national and more scrupulous writers could build their various structures. A foreign critic, especially an English one, will never be able to give Dalin so much credit as the Swedes do; but he was certainly an unsurpassable master of pastiche. His works were collected in 6 vols., 1767.
The only poet of importance who contested the laurels of
Dalin was a woman. Hedvig Charlotta Nordenflycht (1718–1763)
was the centre of a society which took the
name of Tankebyggare Orden and ventured to rival
that which Queen Louise Ulrica created and Dalin
adorned. Both groups were classical in taste, both worshipped
the new lights in England and France. Fru Nordenflycht
wrote with facility and grace; her collection of lyrics, The
Sorrowing Turtledove (1743), in spite of its affectation,
enjoyed and merited a great success; it was the expression of a
deep and genuine sorrow—the death of her husband after a
very brief and happy married life. It was in 1744 that she
settled in Stockholm and opened her famous literary salon.
She was called “The Swedish Sappho,” and scandal has been
needlessly busy in giving point to the allusion. It was to Fru
Nordenflycht's credit that she discovered and encouraged the
talent of two very distinguished poets younger than herself,
Creutz and Gyllenborg, who published volumes of poetry in
Gyllenborg. collaboration. Count Gustaf Philip Creutz (q.v.; 1731–1785) was a Finlander who achieved an extraordinary success with his idyllic poems, and in particular with the beautiful pastoral of Atis och Camilla, long the most popular of all Swedish poems. His friend Count Gustaf Fredrik Gyllenborg (1731–1808) was a less accomplished poet, less delicate and touching, more rhetorical and artificial. His epic Tåget öfver Bält (“The Expedition across the Belt”) (1785) is an imitation, in twelve books, of Voltaire's Henriade, and deals with the prowess of Charles X. He wrote fables, allegories, satires, and a successful comedy of manners, The Swedish Fop. He outlived his chief contemporaries so long that the new generation addressed him as “Father Gyllenborg.” Anders Odel (1718–1773) wrote in 1739 the famous “Song of Malcolm Sinclair,” the Sinclairsvisa. The writers of verse in this period were also exceedingly numerous.
In prose, as was to be expected, the first half of the 18th century was rich in Sweden as elsewhere. The first Swedish novelist was Jakob Henrik Mörk (1714–1763). His romances have some likeness to those of Richardson; they are moral, long-winded, and slow in evolution, but written in an exquisite style, and with much Prose Writers. knowledge of human nature. Adalrik och Göthilda, which went on appearing from 1742 to 1745, is the best known; it was followed, between 1748 and 1758, by Thecla. Jakob Wallenberg (1746–1778) described a voyage he took to the East Indies and China under the very odd title of Min son på galejan (“My Son at the Galleys”), a work full of humour and originality.
Johan Ihre (1707–1780), a professor at Upsala, edited the Codex argenteus of Ulfilas, and produced the valuable Svenskt Dialect Lexicon (1766) based on an earlier learned work, the Dialectologia of Archbishop Erik Benzelius (d. 1743). He settled for some time at Oxford. Ihre's masterpiece is the Glossarium suengothicum (1769), a historical dictionary with many valuable examples from the ancient monuments of the language. In doing this he was assisted by the labours of two other grammarians, Sven Hof (d. 1786) and Abraham Sahlstedt (d. 1776). The chief historians were Sven Lagerbring (1707–1787), author of a still valuable history of Sweden down to 1457 (Svea Rikes historia, 4 vols., 1769–1783); Olof Celsius (1716–1794), bishop of Lund, who wrote histories of Gustavus I. (1746–1753) and of Eric XIV. (1774); and Karl Gustaf Tessin (1695–1770) who wrote on politics and on aesthetics. Tessin's Old Man's Letters to a young Prince were addressed to his pupil, afterwards Gustavus III. Count Anders Johan von Höpken (1712–1789), the friend of Louise Ulrica, was a master of rhetorical compliment in addresses and funeral orations.
In spite of all the encouragement of the court, drama did not flourish in Sweden. Among the tragic writers of the age we may mention Dalin, Gyllenborg, and Erik Wrangel (1686–1765). In comedy Reinhold Gustaf Modée (d. 1752) wrote three good plays in rivalry of Holberg.
In science Linnaeus, or Karl von Linné (1707–1778), was the name of greatest genius in the whole century; but he wrote almost entirely in Latin. The two great Swedish chemists, Torbern Olof Bergman (1735–1784) and Karl Vilhelm Scheele (1742–1786), flourished at this time. In pathology a great name was left by Nils Rosén von Rosenstein (1706–1773), in navigation by Admiral Fredrik Henrik af Chapman (d. 1808), in philology by Karl Aurivillius (d. 1786). But these and other distinguished savants whose names might be enumerated scarcely belong to the history of Swedish literature. The same may be said about that marvellous and many-sided genius, Emanuel Swedenborg (1688–1772), who, though the son of a Swedish poet, preferred to prophesy to the world in Latin.
What is called the Gustavian period is supposed to commence with the reign of Gustavus III. in 1771 and to close with the abdication of Gustavus IV. in 1809. This period of less than forty years was particularly rich in literary talent, and the taste of the people in literary matters widened to a remarkable extent. Journalism The Gustavian period. began to develop; the Swedish Academy was founded; the drama first learned to flourish in Stockholm; and literature began to take a characteristically national shape. This fruitful period naturally divides itself into two divisions, equivalent to the reigns of the two kings. The royal personages of Sweden have commonly been protectors of literature; they have strangely often been able men of letters themselves. Gustavus III. (1746–1792), the founder of the Swedish Academy and of the Swedish theatre, was himself a playwright of no mean ability. One of his prose dramas, Siri Brahe och Johan Gyllenstjerna, held the stage for many years. But his best work was his national drama of Gustaf Vasa (1783), written by the king in prose, and afterwards versified by Kellgren. In 1773 the king opened the national theatre in Stockholm, and on that occasion an opera of Thetis och Pelée was performed, written by himself. In 1786 Gustavus created the Swedish Academy, on the lines of the French Academy, but with eighteen members instead of forty. The first list of immortals, which included the survivors of a previous age and such young celebrities as Kellgren and Leopold, embraced all that was most brilliant in the best society of Stockholm; the king himself presided, and won the first prize for an oration. The works of Gustavus III. in six volumes were printed at Stockholm in 1802–1806.
The principal writers of the reign of Gustavus III. bear the name of the academical school. But Karl Mikael Bellman (q.v.; 1740–1795), the most original and one of the most able of all Swedish writers, an improvisatore of the first order, had nothing academical in his composition. The riot of his dithyrambic hymns sounded a strange note of Bellman. nature amid the conventional music of the Gustavians. Of the academical poets Johan Gabriel Oxenstjerna (1750–1818), the nephew of Gyllenborg, was a descriptive idyllist of grace. He translated Paradise Lost. A writer of far more power and versatility was Johan Henrik Kellgren (q.v.; 1751-1795), the leader of taste in his time. He was the first writer Kellgren. of the end of the century in Sweden, and the second undoubtedly was Karl Gustaf af Leopold (1756-1829), “the blind seer Tiresias-Leopold,” who lived on to represent the old school in the midst of romantic Leopold. times. Leopold attracted the notice of Gustavus III. by a volume of Erotic Odes (1785). The king gave him a pension and rooms in the palace, admitting him on intimate terms. He was not equal to Kellgren in general poetical ability, but he is great in didactic and satiric writing. He wrote a satire, the Enebomiad, against a certain luckless Per Enebom, and a classic tragedy of Virginia. Gudmund Göran Adlerbeth (1751-1818) made translations from the classics and from the Norse, and was the author of a successful tragic opera, Cora och Alonzo (1782). Anna Maria Lenngren (1754-1817) was a very popular sentimental writer of graceful domestic verse, chiefly between 1792 and 1798. She was less French and more national than most of her contemporaries; she is a Swedish Mrs Hemans. Much of her work appeared anonymously, and was generally attributed to her contemporaries Kellgren and Leopold.
Two writers of the academic period, besides Bellman, and a generation later than he, kept apart, and served to lead up to the romantic revival. Bengt Lidner (1759-1793), a melancholy and professedly elegiacal writer, had Lidner. analogies with Novalis. He interrupted his studies at the university by a voyage to the East Indies, and only returned to Stockholm after many adventures. In spite of the patronage of Gustavus III. he continued to lead a disordered, wandering life, and died in poverty. A short narrative poem, The Death of the Countess Spastara (1783), has retained its popularity. Lidner was a genuine poet, and his lack of durable success must be set down to faults of character, not to lack of inspiration. His poems appeared in 1788. Thomas Thorild (1759-1808) was a much stronger nature, and led the revolt against prevailing taste with far more vigour. But he is an irregular Thorild. and inartistic versifier, and it is mainly as a prose writer, and especially as a very original and courageous critic, that he is now mainly remembered. He settled in Germany and died as a professor in Greifswald. Karl August Ehrensvärd (1745-1800) may be mentioned here as a critic whose aims somewhat resembled those of Thorild. The creation of the Academy led to a great production of aesthetic and philosophical writing. Among critics of taste may be mentioned Nils Rosén von Rosenstein (1752-1824); the rhetorical bishop of Linköping, Magnus Lehnberg (1758-1808); and Count Georg Adlersparre (1760-1809). Rosén von Rosenstein embraced the principles of the encyclopaedists while he was attached to the Swedish embassy in Paris. On his return to Sweden he became tutor to the crown prince, and held in succession a number of important offices. As the first secretary of the Swedish Academy he exercised great influence over Swedish literature and thought. His prose writings, which include prefaces to the works of Kellgren and Lidner, and an eloquent argument against Rousseau's theory of the injurious influence of art and letters, rank with the best of the period. Kellgren and Leopold were both of them important prose writers.
The excellent lyrical poet Frans Mikael Franzén (q.v.; 1772-1847) and a belated academician Johan David Valerius (1776-1852), fill up the space between the Gustavian period and the domination of romantic ideas from Germany. It Hammarsköld. was Lorenzo Hammarsköld (1785-1827) who in 1803 introduced the views of Tieck and Schelling by founding the society in Upsala called “Vitterhetens Vänner,” and by numerous critical essays. His chief work was Svenska vitterheten (1818, &c.) a history of Swedish literature. Hammarsköld's society was succeeded in 1807 by the famous “Aurora Atterbom förbundet,” founded by two youths of genius, Per Daniel Amadeus Atterbom (1790-1855) and Vilhelm Fredrik Palmblad (1788-1852). These young men had at first to endure bitter opposition and ridicule from the academic writers then in power, but they supported this with cheerfulness, and answered back in their magazines Polyfem and Fosforos (1810-1813). They were named “Fosforisterna” (“Phosphorists”) from the latter. Another principal member of the school was Karl Frederik Dahlgren (q.v.; 1791-1844), a humorist who owed much to the example of Bellman. Fru Julia Nyberg (1785-1854), under the title of Euphrosyne, was their tenth Muse, and wrote agreeable lyrics. Among the Phosphorists Atterbom was the man of most genius. On the side of the Academy they were vigorously attacked by Per Adam Wallmark (1777-1858), to whom they replied in a satire which was the joint work of several of the romanticists, Markall's Sleepless Nights. One of the innovators, Atterbom, eventually forced the doors of the Academy itself.
In 1811 certain young men in Stockholm founded a society for the elevation of society by means of the study of Scandinavian antiquity. This was the Gothic Society, which Gothic Society. began to issue the magazine called Iduna as its organ. Of its patriotic editors the most prominent was Erik Gustaf Geijer (q.v.; 1783-1847), but he was presently Geijer. joined by a young man slightly older than himself, Esaias Tegnér (q.v.; 1782-1846), afterwards bishop of Vexiö, the greatest of Swedish writers. Even more enthusiastic Tegnér. than either in pushing to its last extreme the worship of ancient myths and manners was Per Henrik Ling (1776-1839), now better remembered as the father of gymnastic science than as a poet. The Gothic Society eventually included certain younger men than these—Arvid August Afzelius (1785-1871), the first editor of the Swedish folk-songs; Gustaf Vilhelm Gumaelius (1789-1877), who has been somewhat pretentiously styled “The Swedish Walter Scott,” author of the historical novel of Tord Bonde; Baron Bernhard von Beskow (q.v.; 1796-1868), lyrist and dramatist; and Karl August Nicander (1799-1839), a lyric poet who approached the Phosphorists in manner. The two great lights of the Gothic school are Geijer, mainly in prose, and Tegnér, in his splendid and copious verse. Johan Olof Wallin (1779-1859) may be mentioned in the same category, Wallin. although he is really distinct from all the schools. He was archbishop of Upsala, and in 1819 he published the national hymn-book of Sweden; of the hymns in this collection, 126 are written by Wallin himself.
From 1810 to 1840 was the blossoming-time in Swedish poetry, and there were several writers of distinguished merit who could not be included in either of the groups enumerated above. Second only to Tegnér in genius, the brief Stagnelius. life and mysterious death of Erik Johan Stagnelius (1793-1823) have given a romantic interest to all that is connected with his name. His first publication was the epic of Vladimir the Great (1817); to this succeeded the romantic poem Blanda. His singular dramas, The Bacchantes (1822), Sigurd Ring, which was posthumous, and The Martyrs (1821), are esteemed by many critics to be his most original productions. His mystical lyrics, entitled Liljor i Saron (“Lilies in Sharon”; 1820), and his sonnets, which are the best in Swedish, may be recommended as among the most delicate products of the Scandinavian mind. Stagnelius has been compared, and not improperly, to Shelley. Erik Sjöberg, who called himself Sjöberg. “Vitalis” (1794-1828), was another gifted poet, whose career was short and wretched. A volume of his poems appeared in 1820; they are few in number and all brief. His work divides itself into two classes—the one profoundly melancholy, the other witty or boisterous. Two humorous poets of the same period who deserve mention are Johan Anders Wadman (1777-1837), an improvisatory of the same class as Bellman, and Christian Erik Fahlcrantz (q.v.; 1790-1866).
Among the poets who have been mentioned above, the majority distinguished themselves also in prose. But the period was not one in which Swedish prose shone with any special lustre. The first prosaist of the time was, without question, the novelist, Karl Jonas Ludvig Almqvist, Almqvist. (q. v.; 1793-1866), around whose extraordinary personal character and career a mythical romance has already collected (see Almqvist). He was encyclopedic in his range, although his stories preserve most charm; on whatever subject he wrote his style was always exquisite. Fredrik Cederborgh (1784-1835) revived the comic novel in his Uno von Trasenberg and Ottar Tralling. The historical novels of Gumaelius have already been alluded to. Swedish history supplied themes for the romances of Count Per Georg Sparre (1790-1871) and of Gustaf Henrik Mellin (1803-1876). But all these writers Fredrika Bremer. sink before the sustained popularity of the Finnish Bremen poet Fredrika Bremer (q.v.; 1801-1865), whose stories reached farther into the distant provinces of the world of letters than the writings of any other Swede except Tegnér. She was preceded by Sofia Margareta Zelow, afterwards Baroness von Knorring (1797-1848), who wrote a long series of aristocratic novels.
A polemical writer of great talent was Magnus Jakob Crusenstople (1795-1865), of whose work it has been said that “it is not history and it is not fiction, but something brilliant between the one and the other.” As an historian of Swedish literature Per Wieselgren (1800-1877) composed a valuable work, and made other valuable contributions to history and bibliography. In history we meet again with the great name of Geijer, with that of Jonas Hallenberg (1748-1834), and with that of Anders Magnus Strinnholm (1786-1862), whose labours in the field of Swedish history were extremely valuable. Geijer and Strinnholm prepared the way for the most popular of all Swedish historians, Anders Fryxell (1795-1881), whose famous Berättelser ur svenska historien appeared in parts during a space of nearly sixty years, and awakened a great interest in Swedish history and legend.
In 1850 the first poet of Sweden, without a rival, was Johan Ludvig Runeberg (q.v.; 1804-1877), whose reputation rivals Runeberg. that of Tegnér. Bernhard Elis Malmström (1816-1865), who was a professor of aesthetics at the university of Upsala, was the author of many important books on artistic and literary history, notably a monograph on Franzén. His poetry, although small in volume, gives him a place beside Runeberg. A volume of elegies, Angelika (1840), established his fame, and two volumes of poems published in 1845 and 1847 contain a number of ballads, romances and lyrics which keep their hold on Swedish literature. He was an exact and discriminating critic, and inclined to severity in his strictures on the romanticists. The other leading verse-writers were Karl Vilhelm Böttiger (1807-1878), the son-in-law and biographer of Tegnér, who, in addition to his lyrical poetry, chiefly of the sentimental kind, wrote an admirable series of monographs on Swedish men of letters; Johan Börjesson (1790-1866), the last of the Phosphorists, author of various romantic dramas; Vilhelm August Detlof von Braun (1813-1860), a humorous lyrist; “Talis Qualis,” whose real name was Karl Vilhelm August Strandberg (1818-1877); Oscar Patrick Sturzen-Becker (1811-1869), better known as “Orvar Odd,” a lyrical poet who was also the author of a series of amusing sketches of everyday life; and August Teodor Blanche (1811-1868), the popular dramatist Blanche produced a number of farces and comedies which were announced as pictures from real life. His pieces abound in comic situations, and some of them, Magister Bläckstadius (1844), Rika Morbror (1845), En tragedi i Vimmerby (1848) and others, maintain their reputation. Fredrik August Dahlgren (1816-1895) gained a great reputation as a dramatist by his national opera, Vermländingarne (1846). He is also the author of translations from Shakespeare and Calderon, and of considerable historical works. Other notable plays of the period were the En Komedi of J. C. Jolin (1818-1884) and the Bröllopet på Ulfåsa (1865) of Frans Hedberg (1828-1908). But Runeberg is the only great poetic name of this period.
In prose there was not even a Runeberg. The best novelist of the time was Emilie Flygare-Carlén (1807-1892). The art was sustained by Karl Anton Wetterbergh (1804-1889), who called himself “Onkel Adam,” by August Blanche the dramatist, and by Marie Sofie Schwartz (1819-1892). Fru Schwartz (née Birat) wrote novels demonstrating the rights of the poor against the rich, of which The Man of Birth and the Woman of the People (Eng. trans., 1868) is a good example. Lars Johan Hierta (1801-1872) was the leading journalist, Johan Henrik Thomander, bishop of Lund (1798-1865), the greatest orator, Matthias Alexander Castrén (1813-1852) a prominent man of science, and Karl Gustaf af Forsell (1783-1848), the principal statistician of this not very brilliant period. Elias Lönnrot (q.v.; 1802-1884) is distinguished as the Finnish professor who discovered and edited the Kalevala.
The most popular poet at the close of the 19th century was the patriotic Finn, Zakris Topelius (q.v.; 1818-1898). Of less importance were Karl Herman Sätherberg (1812-1897), a romantic poet who was also a practising physician of distinction; the elegiac poet Johan Nybom (1815-1889); and the poet, novelist, and dramatist Frans Hedberg (d. 1908), who in his old age made many concessions to the modern taste. The posthumous poems of the bishop of Strängnäs, Adam Teodor Strömberg (1820-1889), were collected by Wirsén, and created some sensation. A typical academician was the poet, antiquary and connoisseur, Nils Fredrik Sander (1828-1900). The improvisatory of Gluntarne, Gunnar Wennerberg (q.v.; 1817-1901) survived as a romantic figure of the past. Still older was the poetess Wilhelmina Nordström (1815-1902), long a schoolmistress in Finland. The aesthetic critic and poet, Carl Rupert Nyblom (1832-1907), continued the studies, translations and original pieces which had created him a reputation as one of the most accomplished general writers of Sweden. His wife, Helene Nyblom, was well known as a novelist. A. T. Gellerstedt (b. 1836), an architect of position, was known as a poet of small range but of very fine quality. Among writers of the earlier generation were Achatius Johan Kahl (1794-1888), the biographer of Tegnér; Per Erik Bergfalk (1798-1890), the critic and supporter of Geijer; the distinguished historian and academician, Karl Johan Schlyter (1795-1888) and the historical writers, Fredrik Ferdinand Carlson (1811-1887), Vilhelm Erik Svedelius (1816-1889), and Martin Weibull (1835-1902). The work of King Oscar II. (q.v.) himself had given him a worthy place among the intellectuals of the country. But the interest of such veteran reputations is eclipsed by the more modern school.
The serenity of Swedish literature was rudely shaken about 1884 by an incursion of realism and by a stream of novel and violent imaginative impulse. The controversy between the old and the new schools raged so fiercely, and The Modern Movement. the victory has remained so obviously in the hands of the latter, that it is difficult, especially for a foreigner, to hold the balance perfectly even. It will therefore be best in this brief sketch to say that the leader of the elder school was Viktor Rydberg (q.v.; 1828-1895) and that he was ably supported by Carl Snoilsky (q.v.; 1841-1904) who at the beginning of the 20th century was the principal living poet of the bygone generation in Sweden. Snoilsky was prominent for the richness of his lyrical style, his cosmopolitan interests and his great width of culture. Carl David af Wirsén (b. 1842) distinguished himself, and made himself very unhappy, by his dogged resistance to every species of renaissance in Swedish thought, or art, or literature. A man of great talent, he was a violent reactionary, and suffered from the consequences of an attitude so unpopular. He found a vehicle for his criticism in the Post och Inrikes Tidningar, of which he was editor. He published his Lyrical Poems in 1876; New Lyrical Poems in 1880; Songs and Sketches in 1885.
Four influences may be mentioned as having acted upon young Sweden, and as having combined to release its literature from the old hard-bound conventions. These are English philosophy in the writings of Herbert Spencer, French realism in the practice and the preaching of Zola, Norwegian drama mainly through Ibsen, and Danish criticism in the essays and monographs of Georg Brandes. Unquestionably the greatest name in recent Swedish literature is that of Johan August Strindberg (q.v.; b. 1849). His drama of Master Olaf in 1878 began the revolutionary movement. In 1879 the success of his realistic novel, The Red Room, fixed universal attention upon his talent. It was the sensation caused in 1884 by the lawsuit brought against Strindberg's Married (a collection of short stories dealing realistically with some of the seamy sides of marriage) which brought to a head the rebellion against the elegant and superficial conventions which were strangling Swedish literature. He affronts every canon of taste, more by a radical absence, it would seem, of the sense of proportion than by any desire to shock. His diatribes against woman suggest a touch of madness, and he was in fact at one time seized with an attack of insanity. He writes like a man whose view is distorted by physical or mental pain. His phraseology and his turns of invention are too empirically pseudoscientific for the simplicity of nature. With all these faults, and in spite of a terrible vulgarity of mind, an absence of humour, and a boundless confidence in the philosophy of Nietzsche, Strindberg is a writer of very remarkable power and unquestionable originality. His mind underwent singular transformations. After devoting himself wholly to realism of the coarsest kind, he began in 1889 his series of mystico-pathological novels about life in the archipelago of Stockholm. This led him to a culte du moi, of which the strangest result was an autobiography of crude invective, A Fool's Confession (1893), the printing of which in Swedish was forbidden. He rapidly passed on, through books like Inferno (1897), the diary of a semi-lunatic, up into the sheer mysticism of To Damascus (1898), where he reconciles himself at last to Christianity. His best work is classic in its breadth of style, exquisite in local colour and fidelity to the national characteristics of Sweden.
A curious antidote to the harsh pessimism of Strindberg was offered by the delicate and fantastic temperament of Ola Hansson (b. 1860), whose poems came prominently before the public in 1884, and who, in Sensitiva amorosa (1887), preached a gospel of austere self-restraint. Hansson has been as ardent in the idolatry of woman as Strindberg has been in his hostility to the sex. Of those who have worked side by side with Strindberg, the most prominent and active was Gustaf af Geijerstam (b. 1858), in his curious and severely realistic studies of country life in his Poor People (1884) and other books. In 1885 he produced a gloomy sketch of student life at Upsala, Erik Grane, which made a great sensation. Since then Geijerstam has published more than forty volumes, and has become one of the most popular writers of the north of Europe. A melancholy interest surrounds the name of Victoria Benedictsson (Ernst Ahlgren, 1850-1889), who committed suicide in Copenhagen after achieving marked success with her sketches of humble life in Från Skåne, and with the more ambitious works Money and Marianne. She was perhaps the most original of the many women writers of modern Sweden, and Money was hailed by Swedish critics as the most important work of fiction since Strindberg's Red Room. Her biography, a most affecting narrative, was published by Ellen Key, and her autobiography by Axel Lundegård (b. 1861), who, after some miscellaneous writing, produced in 1889 a curious novel of analysis called The Red Prince, and who, becoming a devout clerical, published a number of popular stories in a neo-romantic manner. In 1898-1900 he produced a historical trilogy, Struensee, tracing the career of the minister from his early years as a doctor in Altona to his final downfall. In 1904 appeared the first volume of a second historical trilogy, The Story of Queen Philippa. Fru Alfhild Agrell (née Martin), who was born in 1849, produced a series of plays dealing with the woman question, Rescued (1883) and others. She also showed great ability as a novelist, among the best of her books being a series of sketches of country life (1884-1887). An historical novelist of unequal powers, but great occasional merit, is Matilda Malling, née Kruse (b. 1864), whose romance about Napoleon (1894) enjoyed a huge success. Tor Hedberg (b. 1861) also began as a decided realist, and turned to a more psychological and idealist treatment of life. His most striking work was Judas (1886); he has written some excellent dramas. Late successes in the novel has been those of Hilma Angered-Strandberg (On the Prairie, 1898) and Gustaf Janson (Paradise, 1900). The most remarkable of the novelists of the latest group is Selma Lagerlöf (b. 1858), who achieved a great success with Gösta Berlings Saga in 1891-1892. She employs the Swedish language with an extraordinary richness and variety, and stands in the front rank of Swedish novelists. But perhaps the most cosmopolitan recent novelist of Sweden is Per Hallström (b. 1866), who spent much of his youth in America, and appeared as an imaginative writer first in 1891. He has published volumes of ballads, short stories and sketches, fantastic and humoristic, all admirable in style. His play, A Venetian Comedy, enjoyed a substantial success in 1904.
Among the recent lyrical poets of Sweden, the first to adopt the naturalistic manner was Albert Ulrik Bååth (b. 1853), whose earliest poems appeared in 1879. In his rebellion against the sweetness of Swedish convention he proved himself somewhat indifferent to beauty of form, returned to “early national” types of versification, and concentrated his attention on dismal and distressing conditions of life. He is a resolute, but, in his early volumes, harsh and rocky writer. From 1882 onwards Bååth was steadily productive. Karl Alfred Melin (b. 1849) has described in verse the life in the islands of the Stockholm archipelago. Among lyrists who have attracted attention in their various fields are Oskar Levertin (1862-1906) and Emil Kléen (1868-1898). Of these Levertin is the more highly coloured and perfumed, with an almost Oriental richness; Kléen has not been surpassed in the velvety softness of his language. But by far the most original and enjoyable lyrical genius of the later period is that of Gustaf Fröding (b. 1860), whose collection of poems, called Guitar and Accordion, humorous, amatory and pathetic, produced a great sensation in 1891. Three other volumes followed in 1894, 1895 and 1897, each displaying to further advantage the versatility and sensuous splendour of Fröding's talent, as well as its somewhat scandalous recklessness. In 1897 he was struck down with insanity, and after three months' confinement in the asylum at Upsala, although he recovered his senses, all his joyousness and wildness had left him. He became gloomily religious, and in a new volume of poems he denounced all that he valued and enjoyed before his conversion. A younger poet is K. G. Ossian-Nilssen (b. 1875), the author of several volumes of vigorous dramatic and satiric verse.
The writer who was exercising most influence in Sweden at the opening of the 20th century was Verner von Heidenstam (b. 1859). He started authorship with a book of verse in 1888, after which time he led a reaction against realism and pessimism, and has turned back to a rich romantic idealism in his novels of Endymion (1889) and Hans Alienus (1892), and in his stories (1897) of the time of Charles XII. Heidenstam also published interesting volumes of literary criticism, and he is a lyrical poet of very high attainment. Miss Ellen Key (b. 1849), a secularist lecturer of great fervour, became an author in biographical and critical studies of remarkable originality. She is distinguished from Selma Lagerlöf, who is simply an artist, by her exercise of pure intellect; she is a moral leader; she has been called “the Pallas of Sweden.” She published in 1897 a biography of the Swedish author, Almqvist; in 1899 she collected her finest essays in the volume called Thought Pictures; in 1900 appeared, under the title Human Beings, studies of the Brownings and of Goethe; but the finest of Ellen Key's books is The Century of Childhood (1901), a philosophical survey of the progress of elementary education in the last hundred years. She exercises a very remarkable power over the minds of the latest generation in Sweden. A polemical essayist of elaborate delicacy of style is Hjalmar Söderberg (b. 1869), who has been influenced by Strindberg and by Anatole France. His ironic romance, Martin Birck's Youth, created a sensation in 1901. Karl Johan Warburg (b. 1852) has done good work both as an essayist and as an historian of literature. But in this latter field by far the most eminent recent name in Swedish literature is that of Professor Johan Henrik Schück (b. 1855), who has made great discoveries in the 16th and 17th centuries, and who has published, besides a good book about Shakespeare, studies in which a profound learning is relieved by elegance of delivery. Warburg and Schück have written an excellent history of Swedish literature down to 1888. The poet Levertin, who was also a distinguished critic, wrote a good book about the Swedish theatre. Drama has rarely flourished in Sweden, but several of the poets mentioned above have written important plays, and, somewhat earlier, the socialistic problem pieces of Anne Charlotte Edgren-Leffler, duchess of Cajanello (1849-1893), possessed considerable dramatic talent, working under a direct impulse from Ibsen; but her greatest gift was as a novelist. The plays of Harald Johan Molander (1858-1900) have been popular in the theatres of Sweden and Finland since his first success with Rococo in 1880. Altogether a remarkable revival of belles-lettres has taken place in Sweden after a long period of inertness and conventionality. It is regrettable, for its own sake, that the Swedish Academy, which in earlier generations had identified itself with the manifestations of original literary genius, has closed its doors to the new writers with an almost vindictive pertinacity.
Swedish Philosophy.—Swedish philosophy proper began in the 17th century with the introduction of Cartesianism. The protagonist of the movement was J. Bilberg (1646-1717), who, in various theses and discussions, defended the new ideas against the scholastic Aristotelianism of the orthodox churchmen. A. Rydelius (1671-1738), an intimate friend of Charles XII., endeavoured to find a common ground for the opposing schools, and the Leibnitzio-Woltfian philosophy was maintained by N. Wallerius (1706-1764). Towards the close of the 18th century, a number of thinkers began to expound the philosophy of the Enlightenment under the influence of English and French ideas—J. H. Kellgren (1751-1795), K. G. af Leopold (1756-1829), T. Thorild (1759-1808), K. A. Ehrensvärd (1745-1800); while the Kantian dialectic was worthily defended by D. Boëthius (1751-1810), whose work paved the way for a great idealistic speculative movement headed by B. Höijer (1767-1812), the poet P. D. A. Atterbom (1790-1855), a follower of Schelling, and J. J. Borelius (b. 1823), the great Swedish exponent of Hegelianism.
All the above thinkers reflected the general development of European thought. There exists, however, a body of thought which is the product of the peculiar genius of the Swedish people, namely, the development of the individual soul in accordance with a coherent social order and a strong religious spirit. This Personal Philosophy owes its development to K. J. Boström (q.v.), and, though traceable ultimately to Schelling's idealism, received its distinctive character from the investigations of N. F. Biberg (1776-1827), S. Grubbe (1786-1853) and E. G. Geijer (q.v.) (1783-1847), all professors at Upsala. Boström's philosophy is logically expressed and based on the one great conception of a spiritual, eternal, immutable Being, whose existence is absolute, above and external to the finite world of time and space. It has for a long time exercised almost unquestioned authority over Swedish thought, religious and philosophical. It is strong in its unequivocal insistence on personal purity and responsibility, and in the uncompromising simplicity of its fundamental principle. Boström wrote little, but his views are to be found in the works of two groups of thinkers. The older group includes S. Ribbing (1816-1899), C. Y. Sahlin (b. 1824), K. Claëson (1827-1859), H. Edfeldt (b. 1836), the editor of Boström's works, A. Nyblaeus (1821-1899) and P. J. H. Leander (b. 1831); the younger writers, less in agreement with one another, but adhering in the main to the same tradition, are E. O. Burman (b. 1845), K. R. Geijer (b. 1849), L. H. Aberg (1851-1895), F. v. Schéele (b. 1853), J. V. A. Norström (b. 1856), of Gothenburg, and P. E. Liljeqvist (b. 1865), of Lund. Of these, Nyblaeus compiled a lucid account of Swedish philosophy from the beginning of the 18th century up to and including Boström; Ribbing (Platos Ideelära and Socratische Studien) showed how closely Swedish idealism is allied to Greek. P. Wikner (1837-1888) broke away from the Boströmian tradition and followed out a path of his own in a more essentially religious spirit. V. Rydberg (q.v.) (1828-1895) closely followed Boström, and in his numerous and varied writings did much to crystallize and extend the principles of idealism. Among prominent modern writers may also be mentioned H. Larrson and A. Herrlin at Lund, and A. Vannerus in Stockholm.
Authorities.—The Svecia litterata (1680) of J. Schefferus (1621-1679) is the first serious attempt at a bibliography of Swedish literature. The Svenska siare och skalder (Upsala, 1841-1855) contains an admirable series of portraits of Swedish writers up to the end of
the reign of Gustavus III.; many of Atterbom's judgments are reversed in the Grunddragen af Svenska vitterhetens historia (1866-1868) of B. E. Malmström; and a body of excellent criticism of the subsequent period was supplied by G. Ljunggren in his Svenska vitterhetens häfder från Gustaf död (1818-1819; new ed. by Sondén III.'s. 1833), which remains a classic exposition of the views of the romanticists. The history of Swedish letters as it reflects the life of the nation is dealt with by C. R. Nyblom, Estetiska studier (Stockholm, 1873-1884). Among general works on the subject, see H. Schück, Svensk literaturhistoria (1885, &c.) Schück and Warburg, Illustrerad Svensk literatur historia (1896); H. Paul, Grundriss der germanischen Philologie (new ed., Strassburg, 1901, &c.). The official handbook of Sweden prepared by the Swedish Central Bureau of Statistics for the Paris Exhibition (English ed., Stockholm, 1904); Ph. Schweitzer, Geschichte der skandinavischen Litteratur, forming vol. viii. of Geschichte der Welt Litteratur in Einzeldarstellungen (Leipzig, 3 pts., 1886-1889); Oscar Levertin, Svenska Gestalter 1904. (E. G.)
- In Swedish the definite article (masc. and fem. en, neut, et) is added as a suffix to the substantive (when there is no epithet). Geographical terms are similarly suffixed to names, thus Dalelfven, the river Dal. The commonest geographical terms are: elf, ström, river; sjö, lake; ö, island; holm, small island; fjäll, mountain, group or range; dal, valley; vik, bay. In Norrland the following terms are common: å, river, often attached to the names of the large rivers, as Torneå, Luleå (although properly it means a smaller river than elf); the names of towns at their mouths always following this form; träsk (local, properly meaning marsh), jaur (Lapp), afva, lake (provincial Swedish, properly a kind of creek opening from a river). Å is pronounced ö.
- The island and adjacent islets.
- Island included in Kalmar Län.
- Including the four great lakes, Vener, Vetter, Mälar, Hjelmar, 3516 sq. m.
- A legendary list of kings gives to this Charles six predecessors of the same name. Subsequent kings of Sweden have always given this Charles the title of Charles VII.
- Christina's reign dates, properly, from 1644 when she attained her majority. From 1632 to 1644 Axel Oxenstjerna was virtually the ruler of Sweden.
- The Swedish “Landtmanna” party was formed in 1867. It consisted mostly of the larger and smaller peasant proprietors, who at the time of the old “Standers Riksdag” were always opposed to the nobility and the clergy. The object of the party was to bring about a fusion between the representatives of the large landed proprietors and the regular peasant proprietors, to support the interests of landed proprietors in general against those of the town representatives, and to resist Crown interference in the administration of local affairs.
- For further details see Norway: History.
- Skanska folkvisor, edited by E. G. Geijer and A. A. Afzelius (3 vols., Stockholm, 1879).
- See Cederschiöld, Om Erikskrönikan (1899).
- Editions of these chronicles and romances have been issued by the “Svenska Fornskrift Sallskapet” (Stockholm): Ivan Lejonriddaren (ed. Stephens), Hertig Fredrik of Normandie (ed. Ahlstrand) Flores och Blancheflor (ed. G. E. Klemming), Alexander (ed. Klemming), Carl Magnus (ed. Klemming, in Prosadikter från medeltiden).
- Selections from his writings were edited by G. E. Klemming, (Upsala, 1883–1885).
- Edited for a learned society (Upsala, 1886, &c.) by H. Schück.
- The works of the chief writers between Sternhjelm and Dalin were edited by P. Hanselli (Upsala, 1856, &c.) as Samlade vitterhets-arbeten-af svenska författare.
- His works were edited by C. R. Nyblom (2 vols., 1873).
- His collected works were edited by C. Eichhorn (2 vols., Stockholm, 1867-1868). Several of Stagnelius' poems were translated into English by Edmund Gosse 1886).