July 5, 2022

Finland (Fin. Suomi; Swedish. Finland [ˈfɪnland] ( listen)), official name - the Republic of Finland (Fin. Suomen tasavalta; Swedish. Republiken Finland) is a Nordic country in Northern Europe. It borders Sweden to the west, Norway to the northwest, and Russia to the east. In the south and west, the shores of the country are washed by the waters of the Baltic Sea and its gulfs — the Finnish and Bothnian. The capital and largest city is Helsinki. Other important cities are Espoo, Vantaa, Tampere, Oulu and Turku (the country's first capital). The population of the country is 5.53 million people (as of March 2019), most of whom live in the central and southern parts of the country. It is the eighth largest country in Europe and the most sparsely populated country in the European Union. Finland is a parliamentary republic with 311 municipalities and the autonomous region of the Åland Islands. More than 1.4 million people live in the metropolitan area of ​​Greater Helsinki, which produces more than a third of the country's GDP. The population speaks mostly Finnish and Swedish. Swedish is the second official language of Finland, mainly spoken in certain coastal areas in the west and south of the country (about 6 percent of the total population) and in the Åland Islands. Most Finns are members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church. Finland was settled when the last ice age ended, around 9000 BC. With the beginning of pit-comb pottery culture in 5200 BC. pottery appeared, and the culture of corded ceramics developed between 3000 and 2500 BC. e. at the same time as the beginning of agriculture. However, hunting and fishing have always played an important role, especially in northern and coastal regions. The Bronze and Iron Ages were characterized by frequent contacts with other cultures in the Fennoscandian and Baltic regions. From the end of the 13th century, the territory of modern Finland gradually became part of Sweden as a result of the Northern Crusades and through the Swedish colonization of coastal Finland, the legacy of which was reflected in the prevalence of the Swedish language and its official status. In 1809, Finland was incorporated into the Russian Empire as an autonomous Grand Duchy of Finland. In 1906, Finland became the first European de