Sweden: Location, History, Size, Population, & Government

About the location, size, population, and government of the country Sweden.

SWEDEN

NITTY GRITTY

Location--Sweden covers the eastern part of the Scandinavian peninsula. It shares borders with Norway on the west and northwest and Finland on the northeast.

How Created--The entire Scandinavian peninsula was carved out by Ice Age glaciers. The southern regions of the peninsula did not become habitable until about 10,000 B.C. In the 14th century, Norway, Sweden, and Denmark were united under the Danish Queen Margrethe to combat a Germanic alliance. Sweden did not reestablish its independence until the 16th century.

Size--173,649 sq. mi. (449,750 sq. km.).

Population--Over 8,100,000: Swedish, 94.1%; Finnish, 2.4%; Yugoslavian, 0.5%; Danish, 0.4%; Norwegian, 0.3%; German, 0.2%; Greek, 0.2%; Italian, 0.1%; other, 1.8%. Almost 90% Lutheran; 10% Baptist, Pentecostal, and other.

Who Rules--Sweden, like Denmark and Norway, is a constitutional monarchy. King Carl XVI Gustaf, who was born in 1946, became the world's youngest reigning monarch when he succeeded to the throne in 1973. The head of government is a Prime Minister, who is the majority party leader of the Riksdag (Parliament), which consists of a single chamber of 349 members elected for 3 years.

Who REALLY Rules--The Swedish King is almost wholly without power. The Social Democrat party has been in power for over 40 years and is responsible for most of Sweden's social welfare legislation.

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