Norrland is the northernmost of today's three Swedish parts of the country ( landsdelar ) Götaland, Svealand and Norrland. It includes nine historical provinces, also called " landscapes" ( swedish landskap ), called Lapland, Norrbotten, Västerbotten, Ångermanland, Medelpad, Gastrikland, Hälsingland, Jämtland and Härjedalen. Norrland makes with an area of ​​261,292 km ² around 59 percent of Swedish total. With a population of 1,116,000 or 12.8 percent of the total population, the area is sparsely populated.

In today's Sweden is the classification according to the country of marginal interest. It is mainly used in meteorology and in summary statistics, which due to the area Norrland ( Norrbotten County and Västerbotten County ) often in Övre Norrland and Nedre Norrland ( Jämtland County, Västernorrland County and Gävleborg ) is divided. As a NUTS 1 region of Norra Sverige ( SE3 ) one sees the term " Northern Sweden " something more comprehensive.


Norrland was once inhabited by the melting of the ice sheet about 10,000 years ago. In the Neolithic period, where he developed the " slate culture." In the Bronze Age did the development vorsamischer traditions.

From pre-Christian times, little is known. From the place name can be seen that Frey and Freyja, and Thor here had places of worship. Also Odin and Ull are represented. The place names on - hov, - vi -val, Aker and other endings indicate pre-Christian places of worship. Some of them seem to have had it about local significance.

A testimony of Christianity is the so-called Frösöstein, a rune stone in memory of a bridge. It says: " Östman Gudfastson erected this stone and built this bridge, and he Christianized Jämtland. " It is dated to the second half of the 11th century. How these Christianization vonstattenging, can no longer be determined. When King Sverre in 1178 with his Birkebeinern in a campaign against Trøndelag moved through southern Norrland, this was already Christianized by the Sverres saga. This is offset by other written documents, the notice for the period 1220-1240, that in Ström, (northern Jämtland ) no one could the Our Father. And a letter from the Archbishop Peter from the end of the 12th century shows that the conversion was done recently. From this contradictory source material is concluded that Christianity has in the 10th, 11th and 12th century gradually spread in southern and central Norrland, but that one can speak of an organized community education until the 13th century. The prevailing view assumes that the Christianization of Norway and England had gone out. Others include the fact that the Frösöstein is a Swedish and not a Norwegian rune stone and its ornamentation resembles from the Mälargebiet and Jämtland church organization from the outset belonged to the Archbishopric of Uppsala, although at that time politically belonged to Norway that the Christianization rather of southern Sweden went out. It is also contemplated that the alternative time does not do justice because Jämtland was largely independently and influences from the west, south and possibly also exposed from the east at that time.

It was not until 1435 appeared the term " Norrland " in the rhyming so-called " Karl Chronicle " from the Union on time.

Norrlands historic southern border in today's Sweden is Ödmården, a large forest area between Gastrikland and Hälsingland. Gastrikland was formerly part of Svealand and is counted only in recent centuries to Norrland.

Until 1809, the northern part of present-day Finland, was also one of Norrland, this was then ceded to Russia. The border between the then Österland and Norrland formed the Oulujoki (Swedish Ule älv '), which flows near the city of Oulu (Swedish Uleåborg ) in the Gulf of Bothnia.


Norrland is particularly known for its nature. Here you will find enormous forests, great rivers and unspoiled wilderness. In the 19th century, therefore, it became the source for Sweden's major wood and paper pulp industry. The Norrland rivers are used with four exceptions for obtaining water power and generate about 40 percent of Sweden's total energy needs.

Norrland is extremely rich in natural resources, which were for the development of Swedish industry of enormous importance. In the mines of iron ore for the production of steel, but also gold, silver and other metals is encouraged.


The highest mountain with 2,104 meters of Sweden, Kebnekaise, is located in Lapland in Nordnorrland.

The southern border of Norrland falls roughly along with the limes norrlandicus that describes a profound transition in the vegetation structure. The interior consists largely of forest and Fjälllandschaften.

The northern rivers ( from the north ): Torne älv, Kalixälven, Lule älv, Piteälven, Skellefte älv, Ume älv.