At 449,964 km2 (173,720 square miles), Sweden is the third largest country by area in Western Europe and fifth in all of Europe. The country has a population of 10 million people. Sweden has a low population density of 20 people per square kilometre, except in its metropolitan areas; 84% of the population lives in urban areas, which comprise only 1.3% of the country's total land area. The inhabitants of Sweden enjoy a high standard of living, and the country is generally perceived as modern and liberal, with an organizational and corporate culture that is non-hierarchical and collectivist compared to its Anglo-Saxon counterparts. Nature conservation, environmental protection and energy efficiency are generally prioritized in policy making and embraced by the general public in Sweden.
The earliest known achievements of arms in Sweden are those of two brothers, Sigtrygg and Lars Bengtsson, from 1219. The earliest example of Swedish civic heraldry is the city arms of Kalmar, which originated as a city seal in 1247. The seal (Swedish sigill), used extensively in the Middle Ages, was instrumental in spreading heraldry to churches, local governments, and other institutions, and was the forerunner of the coat of arms in medieval Sweden. Armorial seals of noblewomen appeared in the 12th century, burghers and artisans began adopting arms in the 13th century, and even some peasants took arms in the 14th century. Read more...
The Swedish Crown Prince Charles John (Bernadotte), who staunchly opposed Norwegian independence, only to offer generous terms of union.
Old map showing Sweden during the period of Great Power 1648–1721. The Homann Map of Scandinavia, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Estonia, Livonia and northern Poland, from 1730, by Johann Baptist Homann (1664–1724)
Silver coin minted at Sigtuna for a Swedish king around the year 1000
Historical provinces of Sweden
This family crypt and the chapel above it house, in highly ornate coffins, the remains of all four of the Wittelsbach Dynasty monarchs of Sweden whose high-powered period (1654–1720) has been called the Caroline Era for Kings Carl X Gustav, Carl XI and Carl XII.
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The Battle of Öland was a naval battle between an allied Danish-Dutch fleet and the Swedish navy in the Baltic Sea, off the east coast of Öland on 1 June 1676. The battle was a part of the Scanian War (1675–79) fought for supremacy over the southern Baltic. Sweden was in urgent need of reinforcements for its north German possessions; Denmark sought to ferry an army to Scania in southern Sweden to open a front on Swedish soil.
Just as the battle began, the Swedish flagship Kronan sank, taking with it almost the entire crew, including the Admiral of the Realm and commander of the Swedish navy, Lorentz Creutz. The allied force under the leadership of the Dutch admiral Cornelis Tromp took full advantage of the ensuing disorder on the Swedish side. The acting commander after Creutz's sudden demise, Admiral Claes Uggla, was surrounded and his flagship Svärdet battered in a drawn-out artillery duel, then set ablaze by a fire ship. Uggla drowned while escaping the burning ship, and with the loss of a second supreme commander, the rest of the Swedish fleet fled in disorder. Read more...