Finland – country in the far north of Europe
Finland – in 1906 after Russia’s defeat in the war against Japan, the Russian tsar was forced to make substantial concessions in the country. The Finns used this to set up their own very progressive parliament, including the right to vote for women. But it was not until 1917, after the fall of the Tsarist Empire, that Finland became an independent country from Sweden and Russia. In the subsequent civil war between conservative (whites) and left-wing forces (reds), which lasted from 1917 to 1919, the conservative forces triumphed over the reds. After that Finland became a western democracy.
The Republic of Finland also includes parts of Lapland in the far north, where the Saamen ethnic group lives. Santa Claus, who allegedly lives in Finland, and the reindeer are also associated with northern Finland, as are secluded and unspoiled nature and solitude.
Finland was the 2001 PISA winner and has been named the top country and world champion in school education. Germany is called “Saksa” in Finnish and is derived from the name for the Saxon tribe. The Finns probably first came into contact with merchants from Saxony, who came from there to the Finnish coast. This also explains why the second meaning of the word “Saksa” is junk dealer.
Friends of seafaring and cruises will be interested in the fact that a giant cruise ship was completed in Turku in 2009. It is the 360 m long and 47 m wide “Oasis of the Sea”. The ship offers space for around 5,400 passengers.
|Name of the country||Republic of Finland, Suomen Tasavalta|
|Form of government||republic|
|Geographical location||Northern Europe in Scandinavia|
|National anthem||Maamme/Vårt la|
|National holiday||December 6 (independence December 6, 1917)|
|Head of state||President Tarja Halonen (Social Democratic Party)since March 1, 2000. Re-elected on January 29, 2006.|
|Population||about 5.4 million (Credit: Countryaah: Finland Population)|
|Ethnicities||approx. 92% of the population are Finns, approx. 5.6% Swedes and approx. 0.6% Russians. The Saamen ethnic group also lives in Lapland, although they only make up about 0.1% of the total Finnish population.|
|Religions||82.5% of the population belong to the Evangelical Lutheran Church. 16.4% are non-denominational. A minority profess to the Finnish Orthodox Church.|
|Languages||The official languages are Finnish and Swedish as well as the minority language Saami, the language of the Lapps.|
|Capital||Helsinki with around 595,550 residents|
|Highest mountain||Haltitunturi with a height of 1,324 m|
|Longest river||Kemijoki with a length of 483 km|
|Largest lake||Saimaa Lake with an area of 1,460 km²|
|International license plate||FIN|
|National currency||1 euro = 100 cents|
|Time difference to CET||+ 1 h|
|International phone code||00358|
|Mains voltage, frequency||230 volts, 50 hertz|
|Internet Top Level Domain (TLD)||.fi|
Before the year 1000
After the end of the last ice age around 30,000 years ago, people from the south and south-east settled in what is now Finland around 9,000 years ago.
From the year 1000 to the 17th century
According to Abbreviationfinder website, in 1155 missionaries came to Finland from Sweden. The country was incorporated into the Kingdom of Sweden.
In the 18th and 19th centuries
In 1809 Sweden had to cede Finland to Russia due to a lost war. Finland then became an autonomous Grand Duchy of Russia.
20th century to the present
In 1906, after Russia’s defeat in the war against Japan, the Russian tsar was forced to make substantial concessions in the country. The Finns used this to set up their own very progressive parliament, including the right to vote for women. But it was not until December 6, 1917, after the fall of the tsarist empire, that Finland became an independent country from Sweden and Russia. In the subsequent civil war between conservative (whites) and left-wing forces (reds) – between 1917 and 1919 – the conservative forces triumphed over the reds. After that Finland became a western democracy.
Stalin demanded a number of areas from Finland around the flank of Leningrad – today’s St. Petersburg- to be able to secure. After these demands were rejected by the Finnish government, the Soviet Union attacked Finland in the so-called Winter War, which lasted from 1939 to 1940. The Finns under Marshal Mannersheim were defeated and lost large parts of Karelia to the Soviet Union. In the course of the Second World War it occurred in the years 1941 to 1944 between Finnish and Russian troops around the lost territories for the so-called Continuation War. As a result of the peace treaty of 1947, a large part of Karelia finally fell to the Soviet Union – in return, Finland remained a sovereign and independent state. The high reparations payments as a result of this treaty as well as the integration of approx. 400,000 displaced persons from the annexed areas cost the country enormous efforts.
In 1955 Finland became a member of the United Nations and the Nordic Council. Finland joined the European Union in 1995.
On March 1, 2000, Tarja Halonen (born 1943) became the country’s first woman president. On January 29, 2006, she was able to repeat her success in a runoff election and was thus re-elected President of Finland for six years.
Finland’s reputation as a very social and democratic society was badly cracked in January 2008 when the board of Nokia decided to close its plant in Bochum and move production to Romania, despite a return of around 15%.