To the north, Scania borders the former provinces of
From north to south Scania is around 130 km; it covers less than 3% of Sweden's total area. The population of over 1,320,000 represents 13% of the country's population. With 121 inhabitants per square kilometre (310/sq mi) Scania is the second-most densely populated province of Sweden.
Historically, Scania formed part of the kingdom of Denmark until the signing of the Treaty of Roskilde in 1658. Denmark regained control of the province (1676–1679) during the Scanian War and again briefly in 1711 during the Great Northern War. Scania has been an undisputed part of Sweden since 1720.
Endonym and exonyms
The names Scania and Scandinavia are considered to have the same etymology. The southernmost tip of what is today Sweden was called Scania by the Romans and thought to be an island. The actual etymology of the word remains dubious and has long been a matter of debate among scholars. The name is possibly derived from the Germanic root *Skaðin-awjã, which appears in Old Norse as Skáney [ˈskɑːnˌœy]. According to some scholars, the Germanic stem can be reconstructed as *Skaðan- meaning "danger" or "damage" (English scathing, German Schaden, Swedish skada). Skanör in Scania, with its long Falsterbo reef, has the same stem (skan) combined with -ör, which means "sandbanks".
Between 1719 and 1996, the province was subdivided in two administrative counties (län), Kristianstad County and Malmöhus County, each under a governor (landshövding) appointed by the central government of Sweden.
When the first
The local government reform of 1952 reduced the number of municipalities, and a second subdivision reform, carried out between 1968 and 1974, established today's 33 municipalities (Swedish: kommuner) in Scania. The municipalities have municipal governments, similar to city commissions, and are further divided into parishes (församlingar). The parishes are primarily entities of the Church of Sweden, but they also serve as a divisioning measure for the Swedish population registration and other statistical uses.
In 1999, the
During the Danish era, the province had no
The province was divided in two administrative
The Scania Griffin has become a well-known symbol for the province and is also used by commercial enterprises. It is, for instance, included in the
Coat of arms
City of Malmö (1437)
City of Malmö
(1660, revised 1939)
Scania was first mentioned in written texts in the 9th century. It came under Danish king Harald Bluetooth in the middle of the 10th century. It was then a region that included Blekinge and Halland, situated on the Scandinavian Peninsula and formed the eastern part of the kingdom of Denmark. This geographical position made it the focal point of the frequent Dano-Swedish wars for hundreds of years.
In 1719, the province was subdivided in two counties and administered in the same way as the rest of Sweden. Scania has since that year been fully integrated in the Swedish nation. In the following summer, July 1720, the last peace treaty between Sweden and Denmark was signed.
On 28 November 2017 it was ruled that the Scanian flag would become the official flag of Scania.
During Sweden's financial crisis in the early and mid-1990s, Scania,
The relatively strong regional identity in Scania is often referred to in order to explain the general support in the province for the
Electrified dual track railroad exists from the border with Denmark at the Øresund Bridge to Malmö and onwards to Lund. The latter part is currently being upgraded to four tracks and expected to enter service in 2023. In Lund, the tracks split into two directions. The dual tracks going towards Gothenburg end at Helsingborg, while the other branch continues beyond the provincial border to neighbouring Småland, close to Killeberg. This latter dual track continues to mid-Sweden. There are also a few single track railroads connecting cities like Trelleborg, Ystad and Kristianstad. Just as five Scanian stations are served partly (Hässleholm and Osby) or entirely (Ballingslöv, Hästveda and Killeberg) by Småland local trains, the Scanian Pågatåg trains serve Markaryd in Småland.
There are basically three ticket systems: Skånetrafiken tickets can be purchased for all regional traffic including to Denmark, while the Danish Rejsekort system can only be used at stations served by Øresundståg and equipped with special card readers. Additionally, Swedish national SJ-tickets are available for longer trips to the north.
The car ferry service between Helsingborg and Helsingør has 70 departures in each direction daily as of 2014[update].
There are three minor airports in
Geography and environmental factors
Unlike some regions of Sweden, the Scanian landscape is generally not
The narrow lakes with a long north to south extent, which are very common further north, are lacking in Scania. The largest lake,
Where the sea meets higher parts of the sloping landscape, cliffs emerge. Such cliffs are white if the soil has a high content of chalk. Good examples of such coastlines exist at the southern side of
The two major plains,
The Kullaberg Nature Preserve in northwest Scania is home to several rare species including spring vetchling, Lathyrus sphaericus.
Geology and geomorphology
[T]he present landscape is a mosaic of landforms shaped during widely different ages.— Karna Lidmar-Bergström and co-workers.
The gross relief of Scania reflects more the preglacial development than the
In the Paleogene period southern Sweden was at a lower position relative to sea level but was likely still above it as it was covered by sediments. Rivers flowing over the South Småland peneplain flowed also across Scania which was at the time covered by thick sediments. As the relative sea level sank and much of Scania lost its sedimentary cover antecedent rivers begun to incise the Söderåsen horst forming valleys. During deglaciation these valleys likely evacuated large amounts of melt-water. The relief of Scania's south-western landscape was formed by the accumulation of thick Quaternary sediments during the Quaternary glaciations.
Vegetation and vegetation zones
The vast majority of Scania belongs to the European hardwood vegetation zone, a considerable part of which is now agricultural rather than the original forest. This zone covers Europe west of
Three of the 29
- Dalby Söderskog
- Southernmost point: Smygehuk, Trelleborg Municipality, (55° 20' N) (also the southernmost point of Sweden)
- Northernmost point: Gränsholmen, Osby Municipality
- Westernmost point: Kulla udd, Höganäs Municipality
- Easternmost point: Nyhult, Bromölla Municipality
- Highest point: Highest peak of metres
- Lowest spot: Kristianstad, −2.7 metres(also the lowest spot in all of Sweden)
- Largest lake: Ivösjön, 55 km2
- Largest island: Ven, 7.5 km2
Scania is divided into 33 municipalities with population and land surface as the table below shows. There is a large population difference between the western Scania, that is located by, or close to Øresund sea compared to the middle and eastern parts of the province.
|Municipality||Population (April 2013)||Land area (km2)||Population density (/km2)|
|Municipalities that have a coast on Øresund or border a municipality that does (in yellow on the map)|
|Other municipalities (in white)|
* A small part of Båstad municipality is located within the neighbouring province of Halland, this includes the village Östra Karup and some area around it, around 500 people live in Båstad municipality, but beyond the historical boundaries of the Scanian province.
- The western part of Scania (yellow on the map and close to the Øresund sea) covers 3201.3 km2 of land, and had (in April 2013) 925,982 inhabitants, almost 290 inhabitants/km2
- The other municipalities cover 7281.3 km2of land, and had at the same time only 341,009 inhabitants or 47 inhabitants/km2
- The same figures for the entire province are 10482.6 km2, 1,266,991 inhabitants and 121 inhabitants/km2
These figures can be compared with around to 21 inhabitants per km2 for entire Sweden.
Population around Øresund
Western Scania has a high population density, not only by Scandinavian standards but also by average European standards, at close to 300 inhabitants per square kilometre. But the
By adding the population of western Scania to the same of Metropolitan area of Copenhagen, then close to 3 million people live around the Øresund sea, within a maximum distance from Øresund of 25 to 30 kilometres, at a land surface of approx. 6100 km2 (approx 460 inhabitants/km2). This is in many ways a better measurement of describing the area around Øresund than what the far wider Øresund Region constitutes, as the latter includes also eastern Scania (whose beaches are Baltic Sea ones and is far less populated) as well as all Denmark east of the Great Belt.
Regardless of counting a smaller area with higher population density or a larger one, the Øresund Strait is located in the largest metropolitan area in Scandinavia with Finland.
Over 90% of Scania's population live in
- Malmö, 280,415*
- Helsingborg, 97,122
- Lund, 82,800
- Kristianstad, 35,711
- Landskrona, 30,499
- Trelleborg, 28,290
- Ängelholm, 23,240
- Hässleholm, 18,500
- Ystad, 18,350
- Eslöv, 17,748
- Staffanstorp, 14,808
- Höganäs, 14,107
- Kävlinge & Furulund, 13,200
It has been estimated that around 1570, Scania had about 110,000 inhabitants. But before the plague in the middle of the 14th century the population of all Danish territory east of Øresund (Scania, Island of Bornholm, Blekinge and Halland) may have exceeded 250,000.
The figures here are from two different sources.
- 2015 data.
Scania was formerly divided into 23
Climate and seasons
Scania has the mildest climate in Sweden, but there are some local differences.
The table shows average temperatures in degrees Celsius at ten Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute (SMHI) weather stations in Scania and three stations further north for comparison issues. Average temperature in this case means the average of the temperature taken throughout both day and night unlike the more usual daily maximum or minimum average. This is done for specific measured periods of thirty years. The last period began at 1 January 1961 and ended at 31 December 1990. The current such period started at 1 January 1991 and will end by 31 December 2020. At that time it will be possible to with a high degree of mathematical certainty to measure possible climate changes, by comparing two separate periods of 30 years with each other.
|For comparison, some northern locations within Sweden|
 All three of the northern locations are at low altitude and fairly close to the Baltic Sea.
Compared with locations further north, the Scanian climate differs primary by being far less cold during the winter and in having longer springs and autumns. While the July temperatures doesn't differ much (see table above).
The highest temperature ever recorded in the province is 36.0 °C (97 °F) (Ängelholm, 30 July 1947) and the lowest ever recorded is −34 °C (−29 °F) (Stehag, 26 January 1942) Temperatures below −15 °C (5 °F) are relatively rare even at night, while summer temperatures above 30 °C (86 °F) occurs once in a while every summer. Precipitation is spread fairly evenly, both across the province and during the year.
Slightly more precipitation falls during July and August than during the other months.
A typical winter, with average temperatures around the freezing point during January and February, means that a period of mild weather (often windy or/and rainy) is followed by a colder period (when precipitation falls as snow)—and then the mild weather returns etc., rather than a stable temperature close to zero degrees. During the colder periods, the temperature often is below freezing point also during daytime while during the milder periods temperatures below freezing point are unusual even at night. During the mild periods temperatures slightly below freezing point only occur if the night is both calm and free of clouds. If the same circumstances occur during a cold period, the nights can get very cold though. All together this adds up to a 24 hrs/day "winter average" of around 0 degrees In the north-eastern corner (and at the top of the ridges) the winter is in general notably colder though, and a snow cover may last for weeks.
March is locally known as the first month of the spring. The colder periods are fewer and sunny days may even feel pleasant. During April and early May temperature rises rather fast. Though spring (especially in the sense "first heat") arrives later compared to northernmost Germany and Poland. This is particularly notable in the south-eastern corner. This is explained by the open coastline and low temperatures in the
Unlike the other seasons, summer is not warmer in Scania compared to many other Swedish provinces. As in winter, the weather usually changes between periods that either are sunny and fairly hot (up to 30 degrees, even higher away from the coastlines), and periods of unstable cloudy and cooler weather. The time between sunset and sunrise during June and earliest July is less than 7 hours, and both the dawn and the dusk are rather long as well. However, there are still a few hours of real night. Further north in Sweden there is no real night, as dusk turns into dawn. (In northernmost Sweden, the sun does not set at all for around two months.)
The autumn in Scania is a slow process, compared with more northern parts of Sweden (but a faster one, when comparing with any part of the British Isles). During the first half of September, temperatures usually are not so much affected, but the sunset is obviously earlier compared with in June. Temperatures drop in steps. Every new period with sunny weather becomes a bit cooler than the last one. By the end of October the defoliation process becomes evident. But not until late November have all the trees lost their leaves. The period when storms and even hurricanes becomes most likely to occur is between November and February. Most hurricanes come from the Atlantic Ocean and don't involve snow or temperatures below freezing point. Late Scanian autumn is in general benefited from the surrounding waters (the opposite effect early spring).
Scania's long-running and sometimes intense trade relations with other communities along the coast of the European continent through history have made the culture of Scania distinct from other geographical regions of Sweden. Its open landscape, often described as a colourful patchwork quilt of wheat and rapeseed fields, and the relatively mild climate at the southern tip of the Scandinavian Peninsula, have inspired many Swedish artists and authors to compare it to European regions like Provence in southern France and Zeeland in the Netherlands. Among the many authors who have described the "foreign" continental elements of the Scanian landscape, diet and customs are August Strindberg and Carl Linnaeus. In 1893 August Strindberg wrote about Scania: "In beautiful, large wave lines, the fields undulate down toward the lake; a small deciduous forest limits the coastline, which is given the inviting look of the Riviera, where people shall walk in the sun, protected from the north wind. [...] The Swede leaves the plains with a certain sense of comfort, because its beauty is foreign to him." In another chapter he states: "The Swedes have a history that is not the history of the South Scandinavians. It must be just as foreign as Vasa’s history is to the Scanian."
In Ystad, singer-songwriter Michael Saxell's popular Scanian anthem Om himlen och Österlen (Of Heaven and Österlen), the flat, rolling hill landscape is described as appearing to be a little closer to heaven and the big, unending sky.
Scania's historical connection to Denmark, the vast fertile plains, the deciduous forests and the relatively mild climate make the province culturally and physically distinct from the emblematic Swedish cultural landscape of forests and small hamlets.
Traditional Scanian architecture is shaped by the limited availability of wood; it incorporates different applications of the building technique called
A number of Scanian towns flourished during the Viking Age. The city of Lund is believed to have been founded by the Viking-king Sweyn Forkbeard. Scanian craftsmen and traders were prospering during this era and Denmark's first and largest mint was established in Lund. The first Scanian coins have been dated to 870 AD. The archaeological excavations performed in the city indicate that the oldest known stave church in Scania was built by Sweyn Forkbeard in Lund in 990. In 1103, Lund was made the archbishopric for all of Scandinavia.
Many of the old churches in today's Scanian landscape stem from the
The first version of
Scania also has churches built in the
Scania has 240 palaces and country estates—more than any other province in Sweden. Many of them received their current shape during the 16th century, when new or remodelled castles started to appear in greater numbers, often erected by the reuse of stones and material from the original 11th–15th-century castles and abbeys found at the estates. Between 1840 and 1900, the landed nobility in Scania built and rebuilt many of the castles again, often by modernizing previous buildings at the same location in a style that became typical for Scania. The style is a mixture of different architectural influences of the era, but frequently refers back to the style of the 16th-century castles of the Reformation era, a time when the large estates of the Catholic Church were made Crown property and the abbeys bartered or sold to members of the aristocracy by the Danish king. For many of the 19th century remodels, Danish architects were called in. According to some scholars, the driving force behind the use of historical Scanian architecture, as interpreted by 19th century Danish architects using Dutch Renaissance style, was a wish to refer back to an earlier era when the aristocracy had special privileges and political power in relation to the Danish king.
Language, literature, and art
Famous Scanian authors include
A printing-house was established in the city of Malmö in 1528. It became instrumental in the propagation of new ideas and during the 16th century, Malmö became the center for the Danish reformation.
Scanian culture, as expressed through the medium of textile art, has received international attention during the last decade. The art form, often referred to as Scanian Marriage Weavings, flourished from 1750 for a period of 100 years, after which it slowly vanished. Consisting of small textile panels mainly created for wedding ceremonies, the art is strongly symbolic, often expressing ideas about fertility, longevity and a sense of hope and joy. The Scanian artists were female weavers working at home, who had learned to weave at a young age, often in order to have a marriage chest filled with beautiful tapestries as a dowry.
According to international collectors and art scholars, the Scanian patterns are of special interest for the striking similarities with
The title of duke was reintroduced in Sweden in 1772 and since this time, Swedish princes have been created dukes of various provinces, although the titles are purely nominal.
The Dukes of Scania have been:
- Crown Prince Carl(from his birth in 1826 until he became king in 1859)
- Crown Prince Gustaf Adolf(from his birth in 1882 until he became king in 1950)
- Prince Oscar 2016-
From his marriage, in 1905, King Gustaf VI Adolf had his summer residence at Sofiero Palace in Helsingborg. He and his family spent their summers there, and the cabinet meetings held there during the summer months forced the ministers to arrive by night train from Stockholm. He died at Helsingborg Hospital in 1973.
Handball is also a relatively popular team sport, whilst Basketball never really has gained much interest.
Ice hockey was for a long time thought of as a sport of northern Sweden, but has nevertheless became a popular attendance sport too. Malmö Redhawks has even become Swedish Champions twice, but also Rögle BK (from Ängelholm) have participated at the highest level of Swedish ice hockey during quite a lot of seasons.
The overwhelmingly largest sport related events in both Scanian as well as Swedish history, were however the motorcycle Saxtorp TT-races during the 1930s, which most of the years gathered crowds of 150.000 or more.
Tennis is associated with Båstad during the Swedish Open.
Golf is the most popular sport to exercise after a certain age, at least. Scania has a large amount of golf courses, of which Barsebäck Golf & Country Club is the most well-known. Most Golf courses are open also during the winter, but may sometimes close temporarily in cases of snowy periods.
- 2008 Skåne County earthquake
- 460 Scania, an asteroid discovered in 1900
- "Sång till Skåne", a song about the province
- East Denmark
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- ^ "Touchdowns in the History of Lund - Lunds kommun". Lund.se. 17 February 2010. Archived from the original on 9 May 2010. Retrieved 30 July 2010.
- ^ Hauberg, P. (1900). Myntforhold og Udmyntninger i Danmark indtil 1146. D. Kgl. Danske Vidensk. Selsk. Skr., 6. Række, historisk og filosofisk Afd. V. I., Chapter III: Danmarks Mynthistorie indtil 1146 Archived 20 February 2007 at the Wayback Machine, and Chapter V: Myntsteder Archived 20 February 2007 at the Wayback Machine published online by Gladsaxe Gymnasium. (In Danish). Retrieved 10 January 2007.
- ^ a b City of Lund. Touchdowns in the History of Lund Archived 24 December 2008 at the Wayback Machine. Official site for the City of Lund. Retrieved 10 January 2006.
- ^ a b Terra Scaniae. Lunds Domkyrka Archived 31 March 2009 at the Wayback Machine. (In Swedish). Retrieved 11 January 2007.
- ^ Region Skåne (2006). What is typical Skåne?. Official site. Retrieved 22 January 2007.[dead link]
- ^ Terra Scaniae. 1600-talet. (In Swedish). Retrieved 27 January 2007. Archived 30 December 2006 at the Wayback Machine
- ISBN 978-91-975222-3-6. Abstract in English at Scripta Academica Lundensia, Lund University. Archived 23 July 2009 at the Wayback Machine
- ^ Gårding, Eva (1974). "Talar skåningarna svenska?" (Do Scanians speak Swedish?). Svenskans beskrivning. Ed. Christer Platzack. Lund: Institutionen för nordiska språk, 1973, p 107, 112. (In Swedish)
- ISBN 978-91-564-1049-9, Corona: Malmö, 1996–1997. (In Swedish).
- ^ Infotek Öresund. Litteraturhistoria, Malmö Archived 5 January 2007 at the Wayback Machine. Fact sheet produced by Infotek Öresund, a cooperative project between the public libraries of Helsingborg, Elsinore, Copenhagen and Malmö, published online by Malmö Public Library, 4 November 2005. (In Swedish).
- ^ See for example: Monument to Love and Textiles de Skåne des XVIIIe et XIXe Siècles. Scanian textiles from the Khalili Collection exhibited at the Swedish Cultural Centre in Paris and the Boston University Art Gallery. Retrieved 15 January 2007. "The KHALILI Collections". Archived from the original on 18 January 2007. Retrieved 16 January 2007.
- ^ Keelan, Major Andrew and Wendy Keelan. The Khalili Collection - An Introduction. The Khalili Family Trust. Retrieved 15 January 2007. Archived 18 January 2007 at the Wayback Machine
- ^ ISBN 978-1-874780-07-6.
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- Hauberg, P. (1900). Myntforhold og Udmyntninger i Danmark indtil 1146. D. Kgl. Danske Vidensk. Selsk. Skr., 6. Række, historisk og filosofisk Afd. V. I., Chapter III: Danmarks Mynthistorie indtil 1146, and Chapter V: Myntsteder, Gladsaxe Gymnasium. (In Danish). Retrieved 10 January 2007.
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- Sawyer, Birgit; ISBN 978-0-8166-1739-5.
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- Länsstyrelsen – County Administration Board
- Skåneleden – Public nature trails through Scania
- Oresund Region – The regional body of the Oresund Region
- Regional Museum – Museum in Kristianstad
- Kommunförbundet Skåne – A cooperation between Scania's 33 municipalities
- Skånes hembygdsförbund (in Swedish) – Heritage conservation organization
- Terra Scaniae – History project established for Scanian schools, financed with subsidies from Skåne Regional Council.