Akershus (Norwegian pronunciation: [ɑkəʂˈhʉːs] )[2] is a county in Norway, with Oslo as its administrative centre. Akershus has been a region in Eastern Norway with Oslo as its main city since the middle ages, and is named after the Akershus Fortress in Oslo and ultimately after the medieval farm Aker in Oslo. From the middle ages to 1919, Akershus was a main fief and main county that included most of Eastern Norway, and from the 17th century until 2020 and again from 2024, Akershus also has a more narrow meaning as a smaller central county in the Greater Oslo Region. Akershus is Norway's largest county by population with over 716,000 inhabitants.

Akershus fylke
Akershus Fortress, in modern Oslo, was the namesake and center of the region of Akershus since the middle ages, and was located within Akershus main county until 1919.
Akershus Fortress, in modern Oslo, was the namesake and center of the region of Akershus since the middle ages, and was located within Akershus main county until 1919.
Akershus within Norway
Akershus within Norway
County IDNO-32
Administrative centreOslo
 • GovernorValgerd Svarstad Haugland, KrF (2011–2018)
 • County mayorAnette Solli,
 • Total4,918 km2 (1,899 sq mi)
 • Land4,579 km2 (1,768 sq mi)
 • Rank16th in Norway, 1.50% of Norway's land area
 (30 September 2019)
 • Total630,752 Increase
 • Rank2 (10.67% of country)
 • Density134/km2 (350/sq mi)
 • Change (10 years)
13.7 %
 • TotalNOK 285.853 billion
(€31.987 billion)
 • Per capitaNOK 476,986
Time zoneUTC+01 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+02 (CEST)
Official language formBokmål

Originally Akershus was one of four main fiefs in Norway and included almost all of Eastern Norway. The original Akershus became a main county (Stiftamt or Stift) in 1662 and was sometimes also known as Christiania Stift. It included several subcounties (Amt or Underamt); in 1682 its most central areas, consisting of modern Oslo and Akershus, became the subcounty of Akershus within the larger main county of the same name. In 1842, the capital city of Christiania, which at the time consisted of a tiny part of modern Oslo, became a separate subcounty within Akershus main county. The main county of Akershus was disestablished in 1919, and the subcounty continued as Akershus county (fylke). During its history Akershus (sub) county ceded territory to Oslo several times; Akershus' most central and important municipality, Aker, was transferred to Oslo in 1948. Thus, while modern Akershus' capital is Oslo, Oslo is not located within the modern county itself. In 2020, the county of Akershus was merged into Viken along with the counties of Østfold and Buskerud, but Akershus was reestablished as a county from 2024 with slightly enlarged borders. Modern Akershus borders Oslo, Hedmark, Oppland, Buskerud, Oslo, and Østfold; it also has a short border with Sweden (Värmland).

Historical population
Source: Statistics Norway.[3]
Religion in Akershus[4][5]
religion percent

Geography edit

As a geographical term the meaning of Akershus has changed over time. Akershus originally primarily referred to Akershus main county, which included most of Eastern Norway, with the exception of Upper Telemark and Båhuslen (now mainly part of Sweden). The modern Akershus county is a direct continuation of the subcounty of Akershus, created in 1682, and included all of modern Oslo and Akershus. In 1842 the capital city of Christiania, which at the time consisted of a tiny part of modern Oslo, became a separate subcounty within Akershus main county. Akershus main county ceased to exist in 1919, after which Akershus in everyday usage became synonymous with the modern county that excluded Christiania. Akershus' most central and important municipality, Aker, was transferred to and merged with Oslo in 1948.

After 1948, the remaining Akershus county is conventionally divided into Asker and Bærum to the west of Oslo, Follo and Romerike.

Embracing numerous suburbs and urban areas of Oslo, notably Bærum and historically Aker, Akershus is one of the most densely populated areas in the country. The main national railway lines into Oslo run through Akershus with many junctions and stations such as Asker, Sandvika, Ski, and Lillestrøm. Akershus includes some of the lake Mjøsa and some of the river Glomma.

The county also includes the historical place Eidsvoll, 48 km north of Oslo, in which the national assembly ratified the Norwegian constitution in 1814.[citation needed] South of Eidsvoll is the international airport, Oslo Airport at Gardermoen. Oslo's previous international airport, Fornebu, is also located in Akershus. The estate of the crown prince is located in Asker (the royal palace is in Oslo).

Mountains in Akershus edit

Infrastructure edit

The county has two major hospitals, Akershus University Hospital and Sykehuset Asker og Bærum.

The main road from continental Europe, E6, enters Akershus in the south, and runs through eastern Oslo, further to Gardermoen, and into Hedmark County on the eastern shores of lake Mjøsa.

E18 enters Akershus in the south-east, merges for a short stretch with E6 at Vinterbro in Ås, before running under central Oslo. E18 then turns south-west through Bærum and Asker before entering Buskerud County north of Drammen.

E16 runs from the intersection with E18 in Sandvika into Buskerud County west of Sollihøgda.

All main railways out of Oslo run through Akershus:

History edit

Akershus became a fief in the 16th century, and then also included the current counties of Hedmark, Oppland, Buskerud, and Oslo, as well as the municipalities of Askim, Eidsberg, and Trøgstad in the county of Østfold. In 1662, Akershus became an Amt, and in 1685, Buskerud was separated from Akershus and became an Amt of its own. In 1768, Hedmark and Oppland were also separated from Akershus to become Oplandenes Amt (and Askim, Eidsberg, and Trøgstad were transferred to Østfold). In 1842, the city of Christiania (Oslo) was made a separate Amt, as well. In 1919, the term Amt was changed to Fylke. In 1948, Aker, the greatest and the most populous municipality of Akershus, was transferred to the county of Oslo.

Name edit

The county is named after Akershus Fortress. The fortress was built in 1299, and the meaning of the name is "the (fortified) house of (the district) Aker". The name is somewhat misleading now, since the fortress is now outside Akershus (it is in Oslo County since 1842). In fact, the administration of Akershus sits outside the county, as well, in the centre of Oslo.

Coat-of-arms edit

The coat-of-arms is from modern times (1987). It shows a gable from Akershus Fortress.

Municipalities edit

Municipalities of Akershus

Akershus has a total of 21 municipalities:

Number of minorities (1st and 2nd gen.)
in Akershus by country of origin in 2017
Nationality Population (2017)
  Poland 15,685
  Pakistan 7,351
  Sweden 7,050
  Lithuania 5,090
  Iran 4,472
  Vietnam 4,252
  Iraq 4,127
  Denmark 3,643
  Philippines 3,461
  Sri Lanka 3,290
  Germany 3,265
  Afghanistan 3,053
  Somalia 2,939
  Russia 2,839
  India 2,765
  UK 2,381
  Eritrea 2,310
  Kosovo 2,233
  Thailand 2,066
  Turkey 1,812
  Bosnia-Herzegovina 1,786
  Romania 1,725
  China 1,547
  Syria 1,537
  USA 1,320

Districts edit

Cities edit

Parishes edit

  • Asker
  • Aurskog
  • Bjørke
  • Blaker
  • Bærum
  • Drøbak
  • Eidsvoll
  • Enebakk
  • Feiring
  • Fenstad
  • Fet
  • Frogn
  • Frogner
  • Garder
  • Gjerdrum
  • Hakadal
  • Hemnes
  • Heni
  • Holter
  • Hovin
  • Hurdal
  • Hvitsten
  • Høland
  • Høvik
  • Kroer
  • Kråkstad
  • Langset
  • Lillestrøm
  • Løken, see Høland
  • Lørenskog
  • Maria kirke
  • Nannestad
  • Nes
  • Nesodden
  • Nittedal
  • Nordby
  • Oppegård
  • Rælingen
  • Setskog (Sitskogen)
  • Skedsmo
  • Ski
  • Stensgård
  • Søndre Høland
  • Sørum
  • Såner
  • Udenes
  • Ullensaker
  • Vestby
  • Vestre Bærum
  • Østre Bærum
  • Ås

Villages edit

Former municipalities edit

Notable residents edit

People from Akershus

References edit

  1. ^ Regions and Cities > Regional Statistics > Regional Economy > Regional GDP per Capita, OECD.Stats. Accessed on 16 November 2018.
  2. ^ Berulfsen, Bjarne (1969). Norsk Uttaleordbok (in Norwegian). Oslo: H. Aschehoug & Co (W Nygaard). p. 20.
  3. ^ "Projected population - Statistics Norway". Archived from the original on 2013-10-23. Retrieved 2018-10-06.
  4. ^ Statistics Norway - Church of Norway.
  5. ^ Statistics Norway - Members of religious and life stance communities outside the Church of Norway, by religion/life stance. County. 2006-2010 Archived 2011-11-02 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ "Immigrants and Norwegian-born to immigrant parents, by immigration category, country background and percentages of the population". ssb.no. Archived from the original on 2 July 2015. Retrieved 26 June 2017.

External links edit

60°00′N 11°00′E / 60.000°N 11.000°E / 60.000; 11.000