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Finnish Suomi (swô`mē), officially Republic of Finland, republic (2015 est. pop. 5,482,000), 130,119 sq mi (337,009 sq km), N Europe. It borders on the Gulf of Bothnia and Sweden in the west, on Norway in the north, on Russia in the east, and on the Gulf of Finland and the Baltic Sea in the south. The country includes the Åland IslandsÅland Islands
or Ahvenanmaa Islands
, Swed. Ålandsöerna , archipelago (1996 pop. 25,257), 581 sq mi (1,505 sq km), in the Baltic Sea between Sweden and Finland, at the entrance of the Gulf of Bothnia.
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, located at the mouth of the Gulf of Bothnia. HelsinkiHelsinki
, Swed. Helsingfors, city (1998 pop. 546,317), capital of Finland, located in Southern Finland prov., S Finland, on the Gulf of Finland. Situated on a peninsula, sheltered by islands, and protected by the island fortress of Suomenlinna, the city is a natural
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 is Finland's capital and its largest city.

Land and People

Finland falls into three main geographical zones. In the south and west is a low-lying coastal strip (20–80 mi/30–130 km wide) that includes most of the country's major cities and much of its arable land. The coastal strip rises slightly to a vast forested interior plateau (average elevation: 300–600 ft/90–180 m) that includes about 60,000 lakes, many of which are linked by short rivers, sounds, or canals to form busy commercial waterways. The largest lakes are Saimaa, Inari, and Päijänne. The Kemijoki and Oulujoki are the longest rivers of the region and, with the Torniojoki, are important logging waterways. The country's third zone lies north of the Arctic Circle and is part of LaplandLapland
, Finn. Lappi, Nor. Lapland, Swed. Lappland, vast region of N Europe, largely within the Arctic Circle. It includes the Norwegian provinces of Finnmark and Troms and part of Nordland; the Swedish historic province of Lappland; N Finland; and the Kola
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 (Finnish, Lappi). The region is thinly wooded or barren and has an average elevation of about 1,100 ft (340 m); it is somewhat higher in the northwest, where Haltiatunturi (4,344 ft/1,324 m), Finland's loftiest point, is located. Altogether, Finland is made up of about three-quarters forest and woodland; around 10% of the country is water surface and 7% is arable land.

In addition to Helsinki, other important cities include EspooEspoo
, Swed. Esbo, city (1998 pop. 204,962), Southern Finland prov., S Finland, 10 mi (16 km) W of Helsinki. Part of the Helsinki metropolitan area, Espoo saw enormous growth in the late 20th cent., and is now Finland's second largest city.
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, HämeenlinnaHämeenlinna
, Swed. Tavastehus, city (1998 pop. 45,555), capital of Southern Finland prov., S Finland. It is a lake port and a manufacturing town with plywood mills, tanneries, spool mills, and rubber works.
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, JoensuuJoensuu
, city (1998 pop. 51,113), Eastern Finland prov., SE Finland. It is the trade center of the forest region of NE Karelia, has plywood mills, and is an important lake port. It was chartered in 1848 as a copper town. The modern city hall was designed by Eliel Saarinen.
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, JyväskyläJyväskylä
, city (1998 pop. 76,948), Western Finland prov., S central Finland. Situated on Lake Päijänne, it is an important port. Paper and wood products, metals, wool, and foodstuffs are produced. There is an arts festival held in July.
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, KemiKemi
, city (1996 pop. 24,633), Lapland prov., W central Finland, on the Gulf of Bothnia at the mouth of the Kemijoki River. An old trading post, it was chartered in 1869. Kemi is a port and has large sawmills and pulp mills and a power station.
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, KotkaKotka
, city (1998 pop. 55,551), Southern Finland prov., SE Finland, on the Gulf of Finland. It is a major export center for paper, pulp, and timber, and it has chemical industries. It was chartered in 1878.
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, KuopioKuopio
, city (1998 pop. 86,203), Eastern Finland prov., central Finland, on Lake Kallavesi. Situated in a large forest region, its industries are based on timber. It is at the head of the Saimaa lake system and is a tourist and inland-navigation center.
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, LahtiLahti
, city (1998 pop. 96,227), Southern Finland prov., S central Finland. Connected with the southern end of the Päijänne lake system, it is an important lake port as well as a transportation center.
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, LappeenrantaLappeenranta
, Swed. Villmanstrand, city (1998 pop. 57,374), Southern Finland prov., SE Finland, on Lake Saimaa. It is an important trade and industrial center, with sulfuric acid works, lumber mills, and cement factories. There is a hydrotherapy center (est.
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, OuluOulu
, Swed. Uleåborg, city (1998 pop. 115,493), capital of Oulu prov., W central Finland, at the mouth of the Oulu River on the Gulf of Bothnia. It is a seaport and has metal shops, leather plants, and wood-processing and other industries.
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, PoriPori
, Swed. Björneborg, city (1998 pop. 76,375), Western Finland prov., SW Finland, near the mouth of the Kokemaënjoki River. Timber and metals are exported, and chemical and wood products are manufactured.
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, TampereTampere
, Swed. Tammerfors, city (1998 pop. 191,254), Western Finland prov., SW Finland, on the banks of the rapids between lakes Näsijärvi and Pyhäjärvi. It is the third largest city in Finland and a leading textile center of N Europe.
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, TurkuTurku
, Swed. Åbo, city (1998 pop. 170,931), capital of Western Finland prov., SW Finland, at the mouth of the Aurajoki River on the Baltic Sea. The center of the fertile agricultural region of SW Finland, it is also the country's largest winter port and an
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, VaasaVaasa
, Swed. Vasa, city (1998 pop. 56,587), Western Finland prov., W Finland, on the Gulf of Bothnia. It is a port and agricultural market. Timber, iron, and steel are produced. Chartered in 1606, Vaasa was rebuilt closer to the sea after a devastating fire in 1852.
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, and VantaaVantaa
, Swed. Vanda, city (1998 pop. 173,860), Southern Finland prov., S Finland. Located 6 mi (9.7 km) N of Helsinki, it is part of the Helsinki metropolitan area. High-technology and information sciences are important to Vantaa's economy.
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. Finnish and Swedish are both official languages, and about 6% of the population speaks Swedish as a first language; nearly all Swedish speakers are bilingual. In addition, there are about 3,000 Sami (Lapps) living in Finnish Lapland. About 85% of Finland's inhabitants belong to the established Evangelical Lutheran Church.


Long an agricultural country, Finland accelerated the pace of its industrialization after World War II. By the end of the 20th cent., manufacturing, services, and trade and transportation were the largest segments of the economy, while agriculture (plus forestry and fishing) accounted for less than 5% of employment and GDP.

In agriculture, livestock production is predominant, and dairy products are important. Large numbers of poultry, cattle, hogs, reindeer, and sheep are raised. Leading agricultural commodities include barley, wheat, hay, oats, rye, sugar beets, and potatoes. Though Finland's mining output is small, it includes a number of important minerals such as iron ore, copper, lead, zinc, chromite, nickel, gold, and silver. The Finnish lumbering industry is one of the largest in Europe, producing a variety of wood and paper products.

Among the country's chief industries are food processing and the manufacture of iron, steel, electrical and electronic equipment (especially cellular phones), machinery, scientific instruments, ships, pulp and paper, chemicals, textiles, and clothing. Finland is also known for its design of glass, ceramics, and stainless-steel cutlery. Its tourism industry is based mostly on winter sports and fishing. About 20% of the country's electricity is generated by hydroelectric plants and 30% by nuclear power; additional electricity and fossil fuels must be imported.

The leading exports are forest products (which account for about 50% of exports), machinery and equipment, metals, ships, clothing, and processed foods. The chief imports are foodstuffs, petroleum and petroleum products, chemicals, transportation equipment, iron and steel, machinery, textiles, and grains. The principal trade partners are Germany, Russia, Sweden, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom.


Finland is governed under the constitution of 2000. The president, who is the head of state, is elected by popular vote to a six-year term and is eligible for a second term. The new constitution reduced the powers of the president, who previously was responsible for foreign affairs. The prime minister, appointed by the president from the parliamentary majority and confirmed by Parliament, is the head of government. Legislation is enacted by the unicameral Parliament (Eduskunta), whose 200 members are elected to four-year terms by a system of proportional representation. Administratively the country is divided into six provinces.


Early History to Independence

Finland's first inhabitants, dating from about 7000 B.C., probably followed the melting ice northward, attracted by a good supply of game. The first Finnish-speaking persons to enter the region, who were mostly nomadic hunters and fishers, migrated into Finland from the south. By the 8th cent. they had displaced the small number of Sami who lived in central and S Finland and who were forced to move to the far north of the country, where they live today. The Finns were organized in small-scale political units, with only loose ties beyond the clan level.

From the 11th cent. Christian missionaries were active in Finland. In the 13th cent. Sweden conquered the country. Under the Swedes, Finland enjoyed considerable independence, its political sophistication grew, commerce increased, and the Swedish language and culture were spread. In the mid-16th cent. Lutheranism was established in Finland, and in 1581 the country was raised to the rank of grand duchy.

Finland suffered severely in the recurring wars between Sweden and Russia. In 1696 famine wiped out almost a third of the population. By the Treaty of Nystad (1721), which ended the Northern WarNorthern War,
1700–1721, general European conflict, fought in N and E Europe at the same time that the War of the Spanish Succession was fought in the west and the south.
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, Peter I of Russia acquired the province of VyborgVyborg
, Finnish Viipuri, Swed. Viborg, city (1989 pop. 81,000), NW European Russia, NW of St. Petersburg and near the Finnish border, on Vyborg Bay and the Gulf of Finland.
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 (Viipuri), and additional areas were lost to Russia in 1743. During the Napoleonic Wars, Finland was invaded (1808) by Russia, at the time an ally of Napoleon I, in an attempt to pressure Sweden into altering its pro-British stance. Despite considerable Finnish resistance, Russia conquered the country and annexed it in 1809.

In the 19th cent., the czars, who were also grand dukes of Finland, allowed the country wide-ranging autonomy, and as a result Finland was able to develop its own democratic system with little interference from St. Petersburg. In 1811, Russia returned to Finland the territory it had taken in 1721 and 1743. In 1812, Finland's capital was moved from Turku to Helsinki. Government in the country was headed by a Russian governor-general (the personal representative of the czar) in conjunction with the Finnish senate; in addition, there was a Finnish minister of state in St. Petersburg who dealt directly with the czar.

Finnish nationalism became a powerful movement early in the 19th cent.; it was inspired by such leaders as the poet J. L. RunebergRuneberg, Johan Ludvig
, 1804–77, Finnish national poet. In 1837 he became a teacher of Latin and Greek at Porvoo near Helsinki. Runeberg's simple and realistic style helped to check the tendency toward false rhetoric in Scandinavian literature.
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; the statesman and philosopher J. V. Snellman, whose promotion of the Finnish language helped it to achieve official status in 1863; and the philologist Elias LönnrotLönnrot, Elias
, 1802–84, Finnish philologist, compiler of the Kalevala. Although he was trained as a physician, he spent his life, after 1828, traveling through Finland, Lapland, and NW Russia, collecting fragments of the Kalevala from the rune singers.
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, who compiled the monumental epic KalevalaKalevala
, Finnish national epic. It is a compilation of verses recounting extraordinary deeds of three semidivine brothers from mythical Kaleva, land of the heroes. Zakarias Topelius published fragments in 1822; Elias Lönnrot gave the cycle its present form, editing the
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. The intensive Russification campaign (begun in 1899) of Czar Nicholas II brought determined resistance in Finland, including the assassination (1904) of Nikolai Bobrikov, the governor-general, and a general strike (1905). Under terms obtained in 1906, a unicameral parliament (whose members were elected by universal suffrage) was established, but it was given little authority by the czar. Following the Bolshevik success in the Russian Revolution (1917), the parliament proclaimed (Dec. 6, 1917) the independence of Finland.

The New Republic and the USSR

In the ensuing civil war (Jan.–May, 1918) between the leftist Red Guard (supported by some 40,000 Soviet troops and favoring close ties with the USSR) and the conservative Finnish-nationalist White Guard, led by Marshal Carl Gustav Emil MannerheimMannerheim, Baron Carl Gustav Emil
, 1867–1951, Finnish field marshal and president of Finland (1944–46). Of a distinguished Swedish-Finnish family in Russian-controlled Finland, Mannerheim rose to the rank of general in the czarist army.
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 and aided by German troops, the White Guard emerged victorious. After brief periods of rule under Pehr Ervind SvinhufvudSvinhufvud, Pehr Evind
, 1861–1944, president of Finland (1931–37). A judge under the Russian czarist regime in Finland, he played a major part in the movement for Finnish independence and was banished (1914–17) to Siberia.
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 (1918) and Mannerheim (1918–19), a republic was established and its first president, Kaarlo Juho StahlbergStahlberg, Kaarlo Juho
, 1865–1952, first president of independent Finland (1919–25). A professor of law (1908–18) at the Univ. of Helsinki, he was president of the Finnish diet at the start of World War I and an opponent of Russian oppression in Finland.
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, elected (1919). By the Treaty of Tartu in 1920, the USSR recognized Finland's independence.

Agrarian and social reforms enacted after 1918 did much to heal the wounds of civil war, but deep scars remained, and they contributed to the rise of extreme rightist and leftist movements. As a result, there was considerable political instability in the 1920s and early 1930s; there were several government crises, and most ministries were based on coalitions. The Communist party, suppressed in 1923, remained active until it was effectively removed from the scene by discriminatory laws in 1930, and the rightist Lapua movement, originating in anti-Communist disturbances in 1929, was itself suppressed after an unsuccessful coup in 1932.

Finland was active in the League of Nations, which it joined in 1920, and it was the only European country to continue to honor its World War I debts to the United States after the advent of the economic depression at the start of the 1930s. During the 1930s, Finland followed a neutralist foreign policy, and in 1932 it signed a nonaggression treaty with the USSR. In late Nov., 1939, shortly after the start of World War II, Finland was attacked by Soviet troops, and despite spirited Finnish resistance organized by Mannerheim, the USSR easily emerged victorious by early 1940 (see Finnish-Russian WarFinnish-Russian War,
1939–40, war between Finland and the Soviet Union. After World War II broke out in Sept., 1939, the USSR, never on cordial terms with Finland, took advantage of its nonaggression pact (Aug.
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). By the treaty of Moscow (Mar. 12, 1940), Finland ceded the Rybachi Peninsula, its part of the Karelian Isthmus (including Vyborg), and land bordering on Lake Ladoga; in addition, the USSR gained a 30-year lease of the port of HankoHanko
or Hangö
, city (1996 pop. 10,623), Southern Finland prov., SW Finland, at the tip of the Hanko peninsula on the Baltic Sea. A popular bathing resort and a manufacturing town, it is the most important winter port in Finland.
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. Some 400,000 residents of the ceded territories relocated to Finland.

When Germany attacked the USSR in June, 1941, Finland allied itself with Germany, hoping thereby to regain territory from the USSR. Great Britain, but not the United States, declared war on Finland. After some initial Finnish successes, Soviet troops mounted a strong offensive in 1944 and forced Finland to sign an armistice in Sept., 1944. This agreement confirmed the cessions of territory Finland had made in 1940; however, instead of Hanko, the USSR was given a lease on the PorkkalaPorkkala
, small, strategic peninsula, Southern Finland prov., in the Gulf of Finland, near Helsinki. Under the Soviet-Finnish armistice of 1944, Finland leased this area to the USSR for 50 years, for use as a naval base. The USSR returned it to Finland in 1956.
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 peninsula near Helsinki. In addition, Finland was required to pay an indemnity to the USSR and to force the Germans to evacuate the country. In the ensuing warfare with Germany, N Finland was devastated.

Postwar Finland

After the war, by a peace treaty signed in Paris in 1947, the 1944 armistice was largely confirmed; Finland was obliged to pay the USSR $300 million in reparations and to cede the Karelian Isthmus (with Vyborg), PechengaPechenga
, Finnish Petsamo, town, NW European Russia, an ice-free port at the head of Pechenga Fjord on the Barents Sea and near the Norwegian border. It is also the northern terminus of an Arctic highway. Pechenga serves as the base for a fishing (notably herring) fleet.
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 (Petsamo) in the far north, and additional border districts in the east. The USSR was given a 50-year lease to the Porkkala region. About 420,000 Finns left the territory ceded to the USSR and were resettled in Finland. Despite great difficulties, Finland completed its reparations payments by 1952; in 1948, the USSR had reduced the amount by about $74 million. In 1956 Porkkala was returned to Finland.

In the immediate postwar period, Communists (working through the Finnish People's Democratic League) won a substantial number of seats in parliament and held several high-level cabinet posts, including for a short time that of prime minister. However, beginning in 1948, the Communists' power began to wane, and the Social Democrats and the Agrarian Union (in 1965 renamed the Center party) dominated politics from then on. These parties almost invariably had to form coalition governments either with each other or with other, smaller, parties. In 1955, Finland joined the United Nations.

A Neutral Finland

Although during the late 1950s and early 1960s the USSR exercised some influence over internal Finnish politics (forcing, for example, the withdrawal of a candidate for president in 1962), during this period Finland began to follow a more neutral course in relation to the Soviets. In 1966, Communists were included in a coalition cabinet for the first time since 1948. In 1973 parliament passed an extraordinary law extending Urho KekkonenKekkonen, Urho Kaleva
, 1900–1986, president of Finland (1956–81). The leading spokesman of the Center party (known as the Agrarian party until 1965), he held various cabinet posts from 1936 and was prime minister from 1950 to 1956.
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's third term as president (he had been elected in 1956 and reelected in 1962 and 1968) for four years to 1978. He remained in office until 1981, when he was replaced by Mauno Koivisto.

The Finnish Communist party gradually lost influence throughout the 1970s, and finally split in 1985 along nationalistic and pro-Moscow lines. In the 1987 elections, the Conservatives filled the gap left by the Communists, and Conservative Prime Minister Harri Holkeri took office in 1987, heading a coalition government that included the Social Democrats. This left the Center party as the opposition for the first time since independence. The economic collapse of the USSR in 1991 caused a severe recession in Finland, as the country had traded extensively with the Soviets. Soviet disintegration also led to the scrapping of a 1948 Finnish-Soviet defense treaty and to a pledge by Russia to treat its Finnish neighbor as an equal.

In 1991, Esko Aho became prime minister, heading a center-right government, but his party suffered heavy losses in 1995 elections, and a left-right coalition government headed by Social Democrat Paavo Lipponen came into office. In 1994, Martti AhtisaariAhtisaari, Martti Oiva Kalevi
, 1937–, Finnish diplomat, political leader, and international mediator; grad. Univ. of Oulu (1959). Joining (1965) the foreign affairs ministry, he was (1973–76) Finland's ambassador to Tanzania.
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, a Social Democrat and diplomat, became Finland's first president elected by direct popular vote (election was previously by an electoral college). Throughout the 1990s, Finland focused on reducing unemployment and increasing its integration with Western Europe; it became a member of the European Union in 1995. Tarja HalonenHalonen, Tarja Kaarina
, 1943–, Finnish political leader, president of Finland (2000–), b. Helsinki, grad. Univ. of Helsinki (LL.M., 1968). Halonen became an attorney with the Central Organization of Finnish Trade Unions in 1970 and joined the Social Democratic party
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, the foreign minister, was elected president in 2000 and reelected in 2006; she was the first woman to hold the office.

Parliamentary elections in Mar., 2003, gave a narrow plurality to the opposition Center party, and party leader Anneli Jäätteenmäki became prime minister, heading a center-left government. The use of leaked government documents during the campaign by Jäätteenmäki, who had become the first female prime minister of Finland, led to her resignation in June, and Matti Vanhanen, also of the Center party, succeeded her. Jäätteenmäki, however, was subsequently acquitted on charges relating to the incident.

The parliamentary elections of Mar., 2007, again gave the Center party a narrow plurality; Vanhanen remained in office at the head of a reconstituted, center-right coalition. Vanhanen stepped down as Center party leader in June, 2010, and Mari Kiviniemi, the new leader, then also succeeded him as prime minister. In the Apr., 2011, parliamentary elections all the major parties lost seats, but the Euroskeptic and nationalist Finns party, which had previously held a handful of seats, placed third with almost one fifth of the vote and won 39 seats. The conservative National Coalition party (NCP), which won a plurality, secured 44 seats. In June a mulitparty government led by the NCP and with Jyrki Katainen as prime minister was formed.

Sauli NiinistöNiinistö, Sauli Väinämö,
1948–, Finnish political leader. A lawyer and a member of the center-right National Coalition party (NCP), he was first elected to parliament in 1987.
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, the NCP candidate, won the presidency in Feb., 2012; he became the first conservative to be elected to the office in half a century. Katainen stepped down as prime minister in June, 2014, and Alexander StubbStubb, Alexander
(Cai-Göran Alexander Stubb), 1968–, Finnish political leader, prime minister of Finland (2014–15), b. Helsinki. A member of the center-right National Coalition party (NCP), he served in the European parliament (2004–8) and then became
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, also of the NCP, succeeded him. The NCP lost the Apr., 2015, elections to the Center party, led by businessman Juha Sipilä, who became prime minister of a coalition cabinet that also included the NCP and the Finns party (replaced by New Alternative, a Finns offshoot, in June, 2017). President Niinistö was easily reelected in Jan., 2018.

In Mar., 2019 Sipilä's cabinet resigned over its failure to enact changes to the healthcare system. In the April election, the Social Democrats won a narrow plurality and 40 seats, but the Finns party won 39 seats and the NCP and Center party each won more than 30 seats. Social Democrat Antti Rinne subsequently became prime minister of a five-party government that included the Center and Green parties, but resigned in December over his government's handling of a postal strike. Sanna MarinMarin, Sanna Mirella,
1985–, Finnish political leader, prime minister of Finland (2019–). A Social Democrat, she was head of the Tampere City Council (2013–17) and was first elected to the Finnish parliament in 2015.
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, also a Social Democrat, succeeded him.


See J. H. Wuorinen, A History of Finland (1965); E. M. Kivikoski, Finland (tr. 1967); H. Kallas and S. Nickels, Finland (1968); W. R. Mead, Finland (1968); J. Nousiainen, The Finnish Political System (tr. 1971); A. F. Upton, The Finnish Revolution (1981); A. Rajanen, Of Finnish Ways (1984); R. Allison, Finland's Relationship with the Soviet Union (1985); T. Polvinen, Between East and West: Finland in International Politics (1986); H. Lange, Finland (1987); R. Alapuro, State and Revolution in Finland (1988); M. Engman and D. Kirby, ed., Finland (1989).

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



(Suomi), Republic of Finland (Suomen Tasavalta).

A state in northern Europe, Finland borders the USSR on the east for 1,269 km, Sweden on the northwest for 586 km, and Norway on the north for 716 km. Its southern and western shores are washed by the Baltic Sea and the Gulfs of Finland and of Bothnia. The coast, in its general outline, is 1,100 km long. The country has an area of 337,000 sq km, about one-third of which lies beyond the arctic circle and about one-tenth of which is occupied by inland waters, particularly lakes. The population in 1975 was 4.7 million. The capital is Helsinki.

Table 1. Administrative divisions of Finland
LääniLand area (sq km)Population (1974)Capital
Ahvenanaa ...............1,50022,000Maarianhamina
Häme ...............19,800656,000Hämeenlinna
Keski-Suomi ...............19,300240,500Jyväskylä
Kuopio ...............19,900250,700Kuopio
Kymi ...............12,800345,200Kouvola
Lappi ...............99,100195,100Rovaniemi
Mikkeli ...............21,600211,100Mikkeli
Oulu ...............61,100400,900Oulu
Pohjois-Karjala ...............18,000177,100Joensuu
Turku-Pori ...............21,500693,500Turku
Uusimaa ...............10,4001,079,400Helsinki
Vaasa ...............26,800422,200Vaasa

Finland is divided administratively into 12 läänit (provinces), which are subdivided into kihlakunnat (districts). The läänit are listed in Table 1.

Finland is a republic. Its constitution consists of several separate enactments, including the Form of Government, the High Court of Impeachment Act of 1922, and the Parliament Act of 1928. The Form of Government, which is sometimes referred to as the country’s constitution, was adopted on July 17, 1919; amendments were adopted in 1926, 1930, and 1943.

The head of state is the president, who is indirectly elected for a six-year term. The president has broad authority. For example, he appoints the Council of State, or Cabinet; he is the commander in chief of the armed forces; he conducts foreign affairs; he may dissolve Parliament or call it into emergency session; and he has wide decree-making power.

The supreme legislative body is the unicameral Parliament (Eduskunta), whose 200 members are popularly elected on the basis of proportional representation for four-year terms. All citizens who are at least 18 years of age have the right to vote. The prime minister has a role in the formation of the Council of State.

For purposes of local administration, each lääni has an office (lääninhallitus) headed by a presidentially appointed governor. A special case is presented by Ahvenanmaa (the Åland Islands), which enjoys partial autonomy. In addition to a governor, it has an executive board and a council (Landsting) of a single chamber. Local self-government in the communes is exercised by urban and rural commune councils elected for a period of four years. In 1974, Saami Region was formed in the Finnish part of Lapland; it was granted local self-government.

The judicial system includes the Supreme Court, whose members are appointed by the president for life; four courts of appeal; and courts of first instance, which are divided into municipal courts and, in rural areas, district courts. There is also a system of administrative justice. The functions of public prosecutor are carried out by the chancellor of justice. The solicitor general oversees the work of the courts and the public administration.

Coasts. The coasts of the Gulf of Finland and the Gulf of Bothnia are primarily low-lying. The coastline is extremely irregular; there are many small bays and, especially in the south and southwest, numerous skerries. Rapid changes occur in the coastline as a result of the marked uplift of the land in modern times; the uplift ranges from 2 mm per year in the southeast to 9 mm per year in the west.

Terrain. Plains predominate in most of Finland, particularly in the south. More than one-third of the country is less than 100 m above sea level, and more than two-thirds is less than 200 m above sea level.

Central Finland, or the lake district, is characterized by numerous lake basins. It is bounded on the south and southeast by the ridges of Salpausselkä, on the north and northwest by the ridge known as Suomenselkä, and on the east by the West Karelian Elevation. Northern and eastern Finland are dominated by uplands with elevations generally of 400–600 m; the largest such upland is Maanselkä. The northwest includes a small part of the Scandinavian Highlands; the highest elevation in this region, 1,365 m, is reached by Mount Halia, on the border with Norway. Lowlands with some hills stretch along the coasts. The country as a whole has undergone pronounced planation.

An important role in the formation of the present-day topography was played by glaciation, which was responsible for the great number of lake basins, for the predominance of morainal surficial deposits, and for the widespread existence of hilly landscapes. The hilly landscapes exhibit forms resulting from exaration, such as roches moutonnées, and forms resulting from deposition, such as morainal plains, eskers, kames, and drumlins.

Geological structure and mineral resources. The part of Finland that lies on the Baltic Shield is dominated by Precambrian metamorphic and granitic rocks overlain by Quaternary glacial deposits. The ancient granite gneisses of eastern Finland and the granulites of Lapland date from 2.6 billion years ago. They are enclosed by Lower and Middle Precambrian rocks that are 1.89–1.75 billion years old; in addition to the eugeosynclinal and miogeosynchnal schist zones of the Svecofennian in southwestern and southern Finland, these rocks include the metamorphosed volcanic rocks, quartzites, and marbles of the Karelian in eastern and northern Finland. Cratonic clay-sandstone layers of the Upper Precambrian occur in Oulu and in the Jotnian in Satakunta. Cambrian quartzite-sandstones and Cambrian and Silurian shales occur in southwestern and northwestern Finland. Other important rocks include early Precambrian gabbro-peridotites and gabbroids; the synorogenic diorites and granitoids of the Svecofennian and Karelian; the anorogenic rapakivi granites, which are 1.64–1.62 billion years old; and Jotnian diabases. Post-Cambrian alkali intrusions are found in the east, and dacites in the west. Quaternary glacial deposits are represented mainly by ground moraines and the glaciofluvial deposits that form the three ridges in the south of Finland called Salpausselkä. In the postglacial period sizable regions in southern and western Finland were subjected to marine transgressions from the periglacial sea basins.

The chief mineral deposits are located in the Karelian and Svecofennian, where they are associated with basic rocks, quartzites, and schists in fault zones. Among the countries of Western Europe, Finland has the largest reserves of chromites, vanadium, and cobalt, the second-largest reserves of titanium and nickel, and the third-largest reserves of copper and pyrite. Of considerable economic importance are the chalco-pyrite deposits of Outokumpu, Luikonlahti, Pyhäsalmi, and Hammaslahti; the coppernickel ore deposits at Vuonos, Kotalahti, Stormi, Hitura, and Nivala; the deposits of complex ores at Vihanti (in addition to zinc, the ores yield cadmium and gold); the chromite deposits at Kemi; and the deposits of ilmenite-magnetite ores at Otanmäki. There are also deposits of apatite, graphite, magnesite, asbestos, talc, muscovite, marble, rapakivi granites, and peat. As of 1975, Finland’s mineral reserves were as follows: iron ores, 230 million tons; chromites, 30 million tons; titanium (TiO2), 6 million tons; vanadium (V2O5), 90,000 tons; nickel, 300,000 tons; cobalt 30,000 tons; copper, 800,000 tons; lead, 90,000 tons; zinc, 2 million tons; pyrite, 21 million tons; anthophyllite, 160,000 tons; graphite, 10,000 tons; and apatite, 490 million tons.

Climate. The Finnish climate is temperate. The north has a continental climate; in other regions the climate is partly maritime and partly continental. A moderating influence is exerted by the Baltic Sea and the warm Gulf Stream. The winter is long and cold and is characterized by strong winds and an abundance of snow; the summer is relatively warm and short. The mean temperature in February, which is the coldest month, is –3° to 6°C in the southwest, –8° to –10°C in the lake district, and –12° to –14°C in the north; the mean July temperature is 17°C in the south, 16°C in the lake district, and 14°–15°C in the north. The total annual precipitation is 600–650 mm in most of Finland. The figure reaches 700 mm in the south and is about 500 mm on the western coast. Less than 400 mm of precipitation falls in some parts of the far north. From 30 to 40 percent of the precipitation occurs in the winter. The snow cover lasts four to five months in the southwest and six to seven months in the north; its depth increases from 30–40 cm in the south to 70–80 cm in the north. At the end of the winter the ground is frozen to a depth of 20–40 cm in the south and 60–90 cm in the north. Fogs are frequent in the coastal regions and occur from 35 to 85 days a year.

Rivers and lakes. Drainage in about 90 percent of Finland is into the Baltic Sea; drainage in part of the north is into the Arctic Ocean. The country has an intricate network of short rivers with numerous waterfalls and rapids; a prominent example is the Imatra Rapids on the Vuoksi River. The principal rivers include the Kemi, Kymi, Kokemäki, and Tornio (Swedish, Torneälven). The rivers are fed mainly by rain and snow, and their flow is often regulated by lakes. High water occurs in late spring and in the summer; rain-caused freshets may be encountered on some rivers in the fall.

Finland has about 60,000 lakes, which cover approximately 8 percent of the country. The lakes are often elongated from northwest to southeast, in the direction of movement of the ancient glaciers. The shores are generally embayed, and there usually are numerous islands. The lakes are connected by watercourses to form large lake systems, such as the Päijänne, Inari, Oulu, and Saimaa, which has an area of 4,400 sq km.

The rivers and lakes are covered with ice from five to seven months a year. Much of the network of rivers and lakes is used for limber flotation. Hydroelectric power plants have been built on many rivers, and a great number of the lakes are used for navigation.

Soils and flora. The principal soils in Finland are podzols and gleypodzolic and peat soils. In addition, sod-podzolic soils are found in the south, and mountain-forest podzolic and mountaintundra soils in the north. More than one-third of the country’s land is swampy in nature. In the far north, mound (palsa) bogs predominate; in the south, raised bogs and bogs with banks and pools are generally encountered. The stoniness and high moisture content of the soils impede agricultural development of the land and require the carrying out of large-scale stone-removal and drainage work.

The greater part of Finland is occupied by forests, mainly of the taiga type; pine, spruce, and birch predominate. In the south and southwest such broad-leaved trees as the oak, linden, ash, and maple are also found, along with hazel in the underbrush. Heather (Calluna), whortleberry, mountain cranberry, and bog bilberry grow under the forest canopy. In the mountain regions of the far north the flora varies with elevation: the taiga gives way to thin birch forests and mountain tundras.

Fauna. Some birds of prey and large beasts of prey have been preserved in small numbers in Finland; examples are the golden eagle, white-tailed eagle, wolf, glutton, lynx, and bear. Such valuable fur-bearing animals as the European mink, arctic fox, and ringed seal have also become rare. Elk are encountered in the forests, primarily in the north and west. Other forest animals include the fox, squirrel, ermine, pine marten, blue hare, European hare, polecat, and mole. The muskrat, American white-tailed deer, American mink, and American beaver have been acclimatized. Common birds include the carrion crow, magpie, cuckoo, thrush (Turdus), bullfinch, black grouse, hazel hen, eagle owl, and various woodpeckers. The rivers and lakes are rich in fish, such as salmon, trout, whitefish, European perch (Perca fluviatilis), pike, and pike perch. Herring, flounder, Atlantic cod, and smelt are caught in the Baltic Sea. Gray seals inhabit the coastal waters.

Preserves. In 1975, Finland had nine national parks—including Pallas-Ounastunturi, Lemmenjoki, and Oulanka—and 15 preserves.

Natural regions. The four principal natural regions of Finland are the southern coastal, western coastal, central, and northern.

The southern coastal region is characterized by a mild climate and has large areas of flat clayey lowlands. The proportion of the total area covered by lakes and forests is relatively low. The trees of the region include broad-leaved species. Considerable areas are under cultivation.

The western coastal region is a boggy, sandy-clayey lowland with pine and, in the south, mixed forests.

The central region, also known as the lake district, lake plateau, or central plateau, exhibits numerous outcroppings of bedrock. There are many hills and morainal ridges, and eskers and drumlins are frequently encountered. The region has tens of thousands of lakes. Coniferous forests predominate.

The northern region consists primarily of uplands and has a relatively severe climate. It includes the northern taiga and the high-elevation zones of thin birch forests and of mountain tundras.


Eskola, P. “Dokembrii Finliandii.” In the collection Dokembrii Skandinavii. Moscow, 1967. (Translated from English.)
Rutten, M. G. Geologiia Zapadnoi Evropy. Moscow, 1972. (Translated from English.)
Pauramo, M. Suomen luonnon kehitys. Helsinki, 1940.
Mikkola, A. K., and H. Nini. “Structural Position of Ore-bearing Areas in Finland.” Bulletin of the Geological Society of Finland, 1968, no. 40, pp. 17–33.
Nasimovich, A. A. “Finliandiia.” In Sovremennoe sostoianie prirodnoi sredy (biosfery) na territorii Evropy i puti ee sokhraneniia i uluchsheniia. Vilnius, 1972.
Finliandiia: Geograficheskii sbornik. Moscow, 1953. (Translated from Finnish.)
Atlas of Finland: Suomen kartasto. Helsinki, 1960.
Kalliola, R. Suomen kasvimaantiede. Porvoo, 1973.
L. R. SEREBRIANNYI (physical geography) and V. N. VYDRIN (geological structure and mineral resources)

Finland’s population is relatively homogeneous: more than 91 percent of the inhabitants are Finns. In 1973 it was estimated that about 390,000 Swedes lived in the southern and western Baltic regions; more than 3,000 Lapps live in northern Finland. The official languages are Finnish and Swedish. The vast majority of believers are Evangelical Lutherans; a much smaller number are Orthodox. The official calendar is the Gregorian.

The rate of population increase has been low mainly because of the small natural growth, which averaged 3.3 per 1,000 per year between 1972 and 1974, and the tradition of emigration (400,000 people moved abroad between 1945 and 1974).

As of 1974, the economically active population totaled 2.2 million. The breakdown by branch of the economy was as follows: agriculture and forestry, 16.2 percent (45.8 percent in 1950); industry, 27.5 percent (20.8 percent in 1950); construction, 8.4 percent (6.3 percent in 1950); trade and finance, 20.1 percent (9.3 percent in 1950); transport and communication, 6.9 percent (5.4 percent in 1950); and other service spheres, 20.9 percent (10.8 percent in 1950). In 1970 the number of capitalist owners employing hired labor was about 74,000. Among those living by their own labor, 321,000 were agricultural workers, 665,600 were white-collar employees, and 986,900 were blue-collar workers. The size of the hired labor force in 1973 was 1.75 million.

The average population density is 14 persons per sq km; ninetenths of the population live in the southern half of the country. Urbanization has led to the growth of old cities and towns, the rise of new cities, and the development of suburbs around the large cities. The urban population rose from 32.3 percent of the whole in 1950 to 58.1 percent in 1974. The biggest cities are Helsinki, Tampere, Turku, Espoo, Vantaa, Lahti, and Oulu. The inhabitants of rural areas live primarily on farms.

Primitive communal system (to the ninth century A.D.). The earliest traces of human habitation in Finland date from the postglacial period and belong to the Mesolithic Askola culture, which flourished on the coast of Finland in the eighth millennium B.C. Archaeologists have discovered sites of the Pit-Comb culture (third millennium B.C.) and have determined that bearers of the Boat-ax and Corded Ware cultures, who were familiar with stock raising and land cultivation, appeared in southwestern Finland in the second millennium B.C. Trade within the eastern regions of Scandinavia developed at the end of the Bronze Age.

The transition to the Iron Age (beginning of the first millennium A.D.) coincided with the first migrations of Balto-Finnic tribes from northeastern Estonia to southwestern Finland. By the mid-first millennium A.D., Finnic tribal groups had settled in certain specific areas—the Suomi tribes in southwestern Finland and the Harne tribes in the central part of the country. By the ninth century, Finnic tribes had reached Lake Saimaa. By the end of the first millennium, the Korela tribes had settled on the Karelian Isthmus and the northern shores of Lake Ladoga, Nomadic Lapp tribes inhabited the region north of the line formed by the modern cities of Pori, Tampere, and Mikkeli. The Finnic tribes had a primitive communal society and engaged in hunting, fishing, stock raising, and land cultivation.

Rise of early class society; Swedish conquest (ninth through 13th centuries). The campaigns of the Vikings from the late eighth to mid-11th centuries did not affect Finland directly, but the general quickening of economic activity in the Baltic region had a considerable influence on the development of the Finnic tribes. In the ninth century, the important bartering center of Koroinen arose at the mouth of the Aura River, where the city of Turku is now located; Byzantine, Anglo-Saxon, and German coins have been found at the site. Trading settlements were established in other parts of Finland as well.

The clan system very gradually disappeared, and an early class society arose, as is shown by the consolidation of the hereditary power of the leaders, the social and economic stratification of the peasants (who held land in common), the imposition of tribute on the Lapps, and the intensification of the struggle against the Norwegians and Korela tribes over the possession of unsettled areas in northern Finland. The Finnish nationality gradually formed through the merger of the Suomi, Häme, and Korela tribes. Finland, however, did not achieve political consolidation, and it split into a number of regions (maakunnat).

The mid-12th century saw the beginning of the conquest of Finland by Swedish feudal lords. Their supremacy was strengthened through forcible Christianization and the imposition of a permanent taxation system on the local population. In three crusades, which took place in 1155 (possibly 1157), 1249, and 1293, the Swedes conquered all of southern Finland up to the Karelian Isthmus.

Swedish rule (late 13th century to 1809).THE GENESIS OF FEUDAL RELATIONS (LATE 13TH TO LATE 16TH CENTURIES). The Orekhovets Peace of 1323 (also known as the Treaty of Nöteborg), which officially established the border between Sweden and Rus’ for the first time, recognized the territory of what is now Finland to be part of the Swedish kingdom. The process of conquest by Sweden was accompanied by the feudalization of the Finnish population. In the second half of the 13th century the Swedish crown assumed the functions of administration and taxation, which had previously been vested in the Catholic Church. Finland was divided into administrative units based on the old tribal divisions, and the fortresses of Vyborg (Viipuri), Tavastehus (Hämeenlinna), and Åbo (Turku) became the centers of civil administration. Privileged estates appeared, namely, the nobility and the clergy, both of which were composed primarily of people of Swedish extraction. The Finnish peasantry, while remaining personally free and retaining the right to landownership, became feudally dependent on the ruling class and was subjected by the state to new obligations, such as the building of fortresses and the maintenance of garrisons. Taxes on the peasantry accounted for the bulk of revenues sent to Stockholm.

From 1397 to 1523 the kingdoms of Denmark, Norway, and Sweden (including Finland) were united under the supreme authority of the Danish kings (seeKALMAR, UNION OF). Finland enjoyed a relatively high degree of internal autonomy in this period. During the anti-Danish uprising of 1434–36 in Sweden, the Finnish nobility mediated between the warring parties. As a result, the right of the Finnish nobility to vote in the elections of the Swedish king (a right it had exercised since 1362) was confirmed. The Danish penetration into Finland was stubbornly resisted by the peasantry; uprisings took place in 1438 and 1439 in Satakunta, Tavastland, and Karelia. In 1523, Finland—the last bastion of the Danes in their struggle against the Swedish king Gustavus Vasa—came under Swedish control once again.

In the 16th century the Swedish crown appropriated considerable amounts of land in Finland from the peasantry and the Catholic Church; the taking of church lands was motivated in part by the Reformation. Sweden began colonizing the northern and northeastern regions of Finland, which were declared to be possessions of the crown in 1542. The Reformation, lacking a distinct political coloring in Finland, did not result in a broad popular movement, and Lutheranism, the few successes of which were associated with the activity of M. Agricola, did not take root in Finland as deeply as in other northern countries. The division of the country into the dioceses of Åbo and Vyborg further strengthened royal power at the expense of the church’s authority. In 1556 the southwestern part of Finland, which was economically the most developed part of the country, was given to Gustavus Vasa’s son Johan as a duchy. Although Johan was allowed to pursue an independent policy, his attempts to achieve complete autonomy for the region ended in failure; in 1563 its status as a duchy was abolished.

Sweden’s frequent wars against Russia in the second half of the 16th century were ruinous for Finland, especially for the peasantry, which consequently staged the greatest revolt in the country’s history (seeCLUB WAR) in 1596 and 1597. In the struggle for power in Sweden between the Polish king Sigismund III and the Swedish duke Charles, the Finnish nobility sided with Sigismund. In 1599 the Swedes defeated Sigismund’s followers in Finland and eliminated the opposition to Stockholm.

THE PERIOD OF SWEDEN’S GREAT POWER STATUS (17TH AND EARLY 18TH CENTURIES). The conclusion of the Peace of Stolbovo of 1617 was followed by a long period of peace in Finland. The absence of fighting contributed to the restoration of the country’s economy and to the development of local administration. A royal court of highest instance was established in Finland in 1623, a postal service was set up, and about ten new cities were founded. In addition, Gymnasiums and parish schools were opened from the 1630’s to the 1650’s, and a university (the Academy) was founded in Åbo in 1640.

Swedish dominance over Finland was strengthened after the mid-17th century. Under King Charles XI (reigned 1660–97) Finland was essentially a collection of ordinary provinces. From the 1630’s to the 1670’s, more than two-thirds of the land became the feudal property of the nobility, large manorial estates arose, the corvée system was introduced, and the peasants were partially attached to the land. The reversion of lands held by the nobility to the crown (seeREDUCTION) did not substantially improve conditions for the Finnish peasants but at least removed the threat of their enserfment. The Northern War of 1700–21, which is known in Finnish history as the Great Wrath or the Long Wrath, was destructive to Finland’s economy; 60,000 men, or one-fifth of the population, were drafted into the army, and one-fourth of the peasant farms were abandoned. By the Treaty of Nystadt (1721), which ended the Northern War, Sweden returned southwestern Karelia, Vyborg, and other territories to Russia.

THE CRISIS OF FEUDALISM AND THE BIRTH OF CAPITALIST RELATIONS (SECOND QUARTER OF THE 18TH TO THE BEGINNING OF THE 19TH CENTURY). With the weakening of Sweden after the Northern War, anti-Swedish sentiments grew stronger in Finland. On Mar. 18, 1742, during the Russo-Swedish War of 1741–43, the Russian empress Elizaveta Petrovna promulgated a noteworthy manifesto to the Finnish people. The manifesto, which contained an appeal to form an independent Finland with Russian support, had a marked effect on the formation of the Finnish national consciousness. In accordance with the Åbo Peace Treaty (1743), which ended the war, Russia gained southeastern Finland, including the cities of Fredrikshamn (Hamina), Villmanstrand (Lappeenranta), and Nyslott (Savonlinna).

In the 1750’s and 1760’s, with oppositional sentiments on the rise in Finland, the Swedish government was forced to enact several measures to promote Finland’s economic development. In 1765, Finnish cities on the Gulf of Bothnia received staple rights; this privilege opened Finland to the world market. The enclosure of land, which began in 1757, contributed to the development of commodity farms in Finland. In 1775 a decree was issued on the transfer of “surpluses” of land to the crown. Approximately 7,400 new peasant farms were established in the 18th century—half of them after 1775. Permission was given to divide communal peasant holdings and to establish torpat (parcels of land leased to peasants for life in exchange for their labor) on them (see TORPARE). By 1805 these torpat numbered 25,300. The development of agriculture was promoted by the Finnish Economic Society, which was founded in 1797. The Swedish government, however, viewed Finland mainly as a source of raw materials, and the development of the few industrial enterprises that existed (iron, lumber, textiles, and glass) was retarded by guild regulations, the lack of funds, and other restraints.

In the late 18th century the economist A. Chydenius—together with K. F. Menander, P. Kalm, P. A. Gadd, and H. G. Porthan, who were professors at the Academy in Åbo—laid the ground-work for the Fennoman movement for the national regeneration of the Finnish people (the movement took shape in the 1820’s to 1840’s). The anti-Swedish sentiments of the nobility and military officers reached their height during the Russo-Swedish war of 1788–90 (seeANJALA LEAGUE).

Russian rule (1809–1917); the development of capitalist relations. As a result of the Russo-Swedish war of 1808–09, Finland was incorporated into the Russian Empire. The Russian government convened an assembly of representatives of the four Finnish estates in the city of Borgå (Porvoo); this diet approved the conditions under which Finland entered the Russian Empire (seeBORGA DIET OF 1809). Taking the title of grand duke of Finland, the Russian emperor became the head of state of the country, which was named the Grand Duchy of Finland. The emperor was represented in Finland by a governor-general, who headed the supreme government body in Finland. In 1816 this body was named the Senate. The upper level of the administration was directly subordinate to the emperor. In St. Petersburg, Finnish questions were prepared for submission to the emperor by the Committee on the Affairs of Finland, which existed until 1891 (the committee was called the Commission on the Affairs of Finland from 1809 to 1811). From 1826 to 1857 the functions of the committee were carried out by the secretary of state (minister secretary of state from 1834) heading it. The Diet, which represented the four estates, had jurisdiction over legislation concerning domestic affairs; its competence did not extend to foreign affairs. Without the consent of the Diet the emperor could not pass new laws, abrogate old ones, or impose taxes. In addition to internal administrative autonomy, Finland had economic autonomy. For example, it had its own customs service for trade with Russia and Western European countries. The imperial treasury received no revenues from the grand duchy; between 1860 and 1878, Finland’s monetary system was gradually dissociated from Russia’s.

Finland’s special status in the Russian Empire was dictated by political and strategic considerations; as V. I. Lenin wrote, in response to the general European crisis the autocracy sought “to win over the Finns, who were formerly subjects of the Swedish king” (Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 5, p. 355) and to neutralize potential opposition by making a number of concessions. To this end, Vyborg Province was united with Finland in 1811.

Finland’s freedom from military expenses, such as the maintenance of an army, created the conditions necessary for the rapid economic development that began in the 1820’s. After restrictions on trade and on the use of natural resources were lifted between 1857 and 1868, capitalist relations triumphed in Finland. Sawmilling became the leading sector of the economy; in 1890 it accounted for 22 percent of the country’s output and 21 percent of employment. Along with industrially organized sawmilling, which accounted for 20 percent of the total industrial output, it helped undermine the patriarchal character of the peasant farm. From the 1860’s through 1880’s, industrial output increased 16-fold, and joint-stock capital grew from 2.1 million markkaa to 33.3 million. By the late 19th century, agriculture was dominated by dairy farming. The Russian market played an enormous role in Finland’s economic development; it accounted for 30 to 50 percent of the grand duchy’s turnover in trade.

From the 1820’s to the 1860’s the autonomy of Finland was formally retained, but the Diet was not convened until 1863. Censorship became more severe, and in 1850 the publication of books in Finnish was prohibited, except for agricultural and religious literature. The formation of the Finnish nation (natsiia, nation in the historical sense) was associated with the development of the Fennoman movement between the 1820’s and the 1840’s; although the movement became politically oriented in the 1860’s, its members originally advocated the equality of the Finnish language with Swedish and the development of a national culture.

In 1863 the outbreak of the Polish Uprising of 1863–64 compelled tsarism to convene the Finnish Diet and to proclaim the equality of the Finnish and Swedish languages. The school reform of 1866 eliminated church control over primary education and introduced Finnish as a language of instruction. The Diet Act of 1869 provided that the Diet be convened every five years; after 1882 the frequency was increased to once in three years. The municipal reform of 1873 provided for elective bodies of self-government in the cities, and the military reform of 1878 created national army units which became part of the Russian Army.

The reforms on the whole satisfied the Finnish bourgeoisie and nobility. At the same time they strengthened tsarism in the grand duchy. The successes achieved by the 1880’s in the development of a national culture greatly reduced the bitterness caused by the language problem. A political struggle that broke out in the late 1870’s and early 1880’s between the Swedish Party (Svecomans), the Old Finns, and the Young Finns. The struggle centered mainly on Finland’s status in the Russian Empire, the trade policy of the grand duchy, and tactics for dealing with tsarism. The first trade unions arose in the early 1880’s, but they immediately came under the influence of the bourgeoisie. The Finnish Workers’ Party (from 1903, the Social Democratic Party of Finland, or SDPF) was founded in 1899.

After the assassination of Alexander II, political reaction increased in the Russian Empire. As a result tsarism in the mid-1880’s curtailed Finland’s autonomy and in the 1890’s adopted a policy aimed at completely abolishing Finland’s special status within the empire. In the February Manifesto of 1899, which V. I. Lenin called a coup d’etat (ibid., p. 356), the tsar assumed the right to promulgate laws for Finland without the consent of the Diet.

The economic upsurge in Finland continued in the early 20th century. In 1885 there were 38,075 workers in 4,333 factories in Finland; by 1905 there were 107,828 workers in 9,054 factories. Moreover, the value of the gross industrial output rose from 117 million markkaa in 1885 to 392 million in 1905. In 1897 there were 623 joint-stock companies in Finland with a total capital of 170 million markkaa; in 1910 there were 2,214 such companies with 551 million markkaa in capital. In the early 20th century German capital entered the Finnish economy and gained influence.

The development of capitalism led to changes in the class structure of Finnish society. The number of landless peasants increased to 48 percent of the total rural population in 1900, thus swelling the ranks of the proletariat. By the beginning of the 20th century more than 200,000 families belonged to the proletarian or semiproletarian strata in the countryside. These approximately 200,000 families, which included torpparit (tenant farmers) and farmhands, tilled approximately one-half of the cultivated area, although more than one-half of the land under cultivation belonged to only 29,000 families, mainly kulaks. Out of a population that numbered 2,656,000 in 1900, more than 190,000 emigrated between 1896 and 1910, primarily to the USA.

The attacks on Finnish autonomy led to a realignment of political forces in Finland; the Old Finns adopted a conciliatory and submissive policy vis-à-vis tsarism, and the Swedish Party and the Young Finns formed the Constitutionalist Bloc, which adopted a policy of passive resistance to the tsarist autocracy. In 1904 some of the Constitutionalists founded the Activist Opposition Party, which adopted the Socialist Revolutionaries’ tactics of individual terror. The measures taken against the opposition increased in severity after the governor-general was given emergency powers in 1903; as a result, the political atmosphere in Finland was greatly embittered.

A revolutionary movement developed in Finland under the influence of the Revolution of 1905–07 in Russia. In January, October, and November 1905 meetings were held, and demonstrations and strikes of solidarity with the Russian proletariat were staged. In addition, a Red Guard was formed. On Nov. 1, 1905, workers meeting in Tammerfors (Tampere) adopted the Tammerfors Manifesto, which set forth the Finnish proletariat’s demands for democratic reforms. The Constitutionalists demanded the “restoration of legality”—that is, the repeal of the laws the tsarist government had passed without the consent of the Diet after February 1899. On Oct. 22 (Nov. 4), 1905, Nicholas II signed a proclamation rescinding these laws. Faced with the pressure of revolutionary events, the tsar confirmed the new Diet Act, which the Diet had adopted on June 20, 1906. This act, which virtually formed a constitution, provided for a unicameral parliament elected by the people, with universal and equal suffrage for all citizens aged 24 or older.

New political parties arose in Finland in 1906; the Swedish wing of the Constitutionalists founded the Swedish People’s Party, and the well-to-do Finnish peasants founded the Union of the Rural Population of Finland. (The name of the union was changed to the Agrarian Party in 1908 and to the Center Party in 1965.) The SDPF led a strike movement that spread in 1906 and 1907, with the workers of the Tammerfors Manufactory striking in the spring of 1906 and the timber floaters on the Kemi River striking in the fall of the same year. Within the SDPF a left wing was formed in 1905 under the leadership of O. V. Kuusinen, Y. E. Sirola, and others. The revolutionary events in Finland culminated in the Sveaborg Uprising of 1906; staged by Russian soldiers and sailors, the uprising found support among the Finnish proletariat. The Central Federation of Trade Unions of Finland was founded in April 1907.

The defeat of the revolution in Russia led to reaction in Finland as well. Parliament was frequently dissolved between 1907 and 1911. In addition, on the basis of the tsar’s ukase of June 17 (30), 1910, the Russian government drafted a program between 1910 and 1914 for the complete abolition of Finland’s autonomy. As a result, pro-German sentiments increased in Finland during World War I.

In industry, which was linked to the Russian market by war deliveries, a rapid concentration of production took place; the large factories, which produced up to 77 percent of the total output, employed 79 percent of the workers. The trade unions led the workers in a struggle for an improved standard of living. More than 15,000 workers went on strike in 1910, and more than 40,000 in 1916. The influence of the SDPF increased: in the parliamentary elections of 1907 the Social Democrats won 80 out of 200 seats; in 1916 they won 103 seats.

The February Revolution of 1917 in Russia stimulated political activity in Finland. In March 1917 the Finnish proletariat founded the Helsinki diet of workers’ organizations, which played an important role in the Finnish Revolution of 1918, just as the soviets of workers’ deputies did in Russia. Similar diets of workers’ organizations were established in other Finnish cities as well. The Russian Provisional Government restored Finland’s autonomy on March 7 (20), 1917, but strongly opposed the growing trend, supported by the SDPF, toward complete internal independence. On July 18, 1917, at the proposal of the Social Democratic faction, the Finnish Parliament adopted the Power Act, in which it claimed for itself supreme authority in Finland’s internal affairs. On July 18 (31) the Provisional Government dissolved Parliament; new elections held in October 1917 gave the bourgeois parties a parliamentary majority.

The October Revolution in Russia brought independence to the Finnish people. On Dec. 6, 1917, Parliament adopted a declaration proclaiming Finland to be an independent state. In accordance with the Leninist policy on nationalities, the Council of People’s Commissars of the RSFSR recognized Finland’s independence on Dec. 18 (31), 1917, and the All-Russian Central Executive Committee confirmed the council’s resolution on Dec. 22, 1917 (Jan. 4, 1918).

The October Revolution in Russia had an immense influence on the development of the Finnish revolutionary movement. A general strike took place in Finland on Nov. 13–19, 1917. The SDPF, however, did not take advantage of the revolutionary situation that arose in the country at the time. On Nov. 26, 1917, Parliament approved the proposed composition of a bourgeois senate headed by P. Svinhufvud, who undertook to suppress the revolutionary movement. A White Guard was formed and armed with Germany’s aid. On Jan. 16, 1918, the Senate, having been granted dictatorial powers on Jan. 12, appointed C. G. E. Mannerheim, a former general in the tsarist army, commander in chief of the White Guard.

The Revolution of 1918. In the early morning of Jan. 28 a workers’ revolution began in Finland (see 1918). Acting on appeals from the leaders of workers’ organizations, the proletariat of Helsinki seized government institutions and banks. The resistance of the Whites in the southern part of the country was quickly broken. However, the north and most of central Finland, where the members of the bourgeois government had taken refuge, were occupied by the White Guard. Civil war ensued. A revolutionary government, the Council of People’s Commissioners, was established on January 28. The council formulated a democratic program but proceeded to enact a series of socialistic reforms. It nationalized large private estates and many industrial and commercial establishments, replaced the bourgeois state apparatus, assumed management of the Bank of Finland, instituted state control over private banks, established workers’ control at factories, and gave free land to the tenant farmers. Soviet Russia rendered considerable assistance to revolutionary Finland. On Mar. 18, 1918, with V. I. Lenin present, representatives of the two countries met in Petrograd and signed a treaty strengthening friendship and brotherhood between the RSFSR and the Finnish Socialist Workers’ Republic (so designated in the text of the treaty at Lenin’s proposal).

The counterrevolutionary forces called on the German imperialists for help in suppressing the revolution. Treaties between Svinhufvud’s government and Germany were signed in Berlin on Mar. 7, 1918; these treaties made Finland politically and economically dependent on Germany. In early May the revolution was suppressed with the aid of German troops that had landed in Finland. Although the revolution was defeated, it had a considerable influence on the history of the country and the further development of the working-class movement. Learning from its lessons, the most perceptive Finnish Social Democrats realized the necessity of forming a truly revolutionary Marxist-Leninist party; as a result, on Aug. 29, 1918, the left wing of the SDPF founded the Communist Party of Finland (CPF).

From 1918 to 1945. The suppression of the revolution in Finland was followed by the establishment of a regime of White terror. On May 15, 1918, Parliament voted to break relations with Soviet Russia. In August the Finnish government declared that peaceful relations between the two countries would be established only after Karelia and the Kola Peninsula had been incorporated into Finland. Moreover, Parliament passed several laws to aid the formation of a political alliance with Germany; it voted on Aug. 1, 1918, to make Finland a monarchy and on October 9 to elect the German prince Friedrich Karl of Hessen as king of Finland. The German revolution of 1918 and Germany’s defeat in World War I saved Finland from becoming a vassal of Germany. Finland was proclaimed a republic on July 17, 1919, and K. Ståhlberg was elected president of the bourgeois republic.

From 1918 to 1920, Finland supported the interventionist plans of the imperialist powers, although it did not actually take part in the intervention. The victories of the Red Army, the growth of the working-class movement in the country, and economic difficulties forced Finland to accept the peace proposals of the Soviet government. A peace treaty between the RSFSR and Finland was signed on Oct. 14, 1920. Nevertheless, Finnish foreign policy retained an anti-Soviet bias that was consistent with the class interests of the bourgeoisie and with the desire of the reactionary circles to create a Greater Finland. White Finnish “volunteer” detachments made frequent raids on Soviet Karelia until 1922, and political, economic, and cultural ties with the USSR were at a minimum.

In domestic politics, restrictions were placed on the activities of democratic forces. The CPF, which had been an illegal organization since its inception in 1918, continued to work among the masses. Its parliamentary and public activity in defense of the working people’s interests was carried out through the Socialist Labor Party (in existence from 1920 to 1924), the trade unions, and other legally functioning left-wing workers’ and youth organizations. Finnish domestic politics in the 1920’s were not marked by stability; the government (Council of State) changed 14 times between 1919 and 1930.

The period from 1920 to 1928 saw some improvement in the economy, especially in the lumber and wood-products industry, but the standard of living of the Finnish workers remained one of the lowest in Europe. The trade unions led strikes involving 2,000 workers in 1924, 13,000 in 1927, and 37,000 in 1928. The world economic crisis of 1929–33 considerably weakened the Finnish economy. Between 1928 and 1931 industrial output declined by 32.5 percent and unemployment exceeded 100,000 persons; large numbers of peasants became impoverished.

Using the myth of a “communist threat,” the bourgeoisie attacked the rights of the working people. The fascist Lapua movement arose in the fall of 1929. In 1930, Parliament was dissolved, its left-wing members associated with the working-class movement were arrested, and the Central Federation of Trade Unions of Finland was outlawed. In 1930 and 1931 the country was ruled by the right-wing bourgeois government of P. Svinhufvud, who served as president of Finland from 1931 to 1937. In October 1930 the newly elected Parliament adopted a number of anticommunist emergency laws. The Patriotic People’s Movement, a fascist party, was founded in 1932 and continued to exist until 1944. Laws passed in 1934 and 1935 curtailed civil liberties, and a political police was established in 1936. Reactionary circles demanded Lebensraum (living space) and the extension of Finland’s territory to the Urals.

A nonaggression treaty between Finland and the USSR was signed in 1932. In 1935 Parliament declared that Finland would pursue a foreign policy of neutrality. This neutrality, however, was purely formal; in actuality, the ruling circles remained anti-Soviet. In the mid-1930’s Finland adopted a policy of rapprochement with fascist Germany, although Finland also maintained close ties with Great Britain, France, and the USA. From 1937 to 1939, A. Cajander of the National Progressive Party (founded 1918) headed the government, into which he brought a number of Social Democrats. Nevertheless, the general orientation of Finland’s policies did not change, even though the parliamentary elections of 1936–37 had registered a marked shift of Finnish public opinion to the left as a result of the vigorous efforts of the CPF to establish a popular front against the threat of fascism and war.

After the economic decline of 1929–33, Finland, while remaining an agricultural and industrial country, witnessed a rapid development of industry, especially the metalworking industry, whose output increased fourfold between 1922 and 1938. Industrial output reached its prewar peak in 1938 with 231,000 people employed in industry. In that year industry accounted for 25.8 percent of the national income, construction 4.5 percent, agriculture 19.6 percent, and forestry 15.5 percent. Finland became one of the world’s leading producers and exporters of wood products and paper products. In agriculture, the country was able to fulfill all its needs for meat and dairy products and was almost self-sufficient in the production of grains. In spite of repressive measures taken by the government, the working people fought vigorously for their interests. Between 1936 and 1939 more than 19,000 Finns took part in 127 strikes.

Perceiving an increased threat of attack by imperialist powers on the USSR from Finnish territory, the Soviet government proposed to the Finnish government in the spring of 1938 that the two countries conclude a mutual assistance pact. The Finnish government, however, rejected the proposal. It also refused to join in a system of collective security. Moreover, Finland rejected proposals that the Soviet government made in the spring of 1939 for the purpose of strengthening the security of Finland and Leningrad. In addition, Soviet-Finnish negotiations held in Moscow in October and November 1939 for the purpose of strengthening mutual security were broken off by the Finnish side.

Meanwhile Finland actively prepared for war. Mobilization was carried out in the fall of 1939. On Nov. 28, 1939, the Soviet government was compelled to abrogate the nonaggression treaty with Finiand. Hostilities between the two countries began on Nov. 30, 1939 (seeSOVIET-FINNISH WAR OF 1939–40). The war ended in Finland’s defeat, and a Soviet-Finnish peace treaty was signed in Moscow on Mar. 12, 1940. Finland’s ruling circles, however, considered the peace treaty only a truce and resumed the policy of rapprochement with fascist Germany. Progressive Finnish organizations and activists, including members of the Society for Peace and Friendship With the USSR (founded May 1940), were subjected to repressive measures. In the fall of 1940, Finland granted German troops transit rights through Finland, and in late 1940 the Finnish and German commanders reached an agreement on cooperation in preparations for war against the USSR. A general mobilization began in Finland on June 17.

On June 22, 1941, Finland became a cobelligerent of fascist Germany against the USSR, although it did not formally declare war until June 26. On June 30, 1941, the Finnish Army took the offensive on the northern part of the Soviet-German front and occupied most of Soviet Karelia and several regions of Leningrad Oblast. Finland joined the Anti-Comintern Pact in November 1941. Great Britain broke diplomatic relations with Finland in 1941, and the USA did so in 1944. In September 1944, as a result of the victories of the Soviet Army in the Great Patriotic War, Finland agreed to a cease-fire and severed relations with Germany. An armistice and preliminary peace between Finland and the countries at war with it was signed in Moscow on Sept. 19, 1944. In accordance with the armistice, fascist organizations in Finland were disbanded, antifascists were released from Finnish prisons and concentration camps, and the CPF and other democratic organizations were legalized. On the initiative of the CPF and left-wing Social Democrats, the Finnish People’s Democratic League (SKDL) was founded in October 1944. In March 1945, Finland declared war on fascist Germany.

Since World War II. The level of industrial output in Finland did not decrease markedly after Finland’s withdrawal from the war; production in 1944 was at 96 percent of its 1938 level. Output, however, did not increase, largely because of structural changes made in industry to meet the needs of the war. Agricultural output dropped to two-thirds of its prewar level, the national debt increased by a factor of 20, and the standard of living declined.

The parliamentary elections of 1945 brought success to the democratic forces. After the elections the SKDL, the Agrarian Party, and the SDPF signed an agreement of cooperation. From 1945 to 1948 governments based on this agreement were in power. During this period progress was made in restoring the economy (industrial output reached the prewar level in 1946), and a number of reforms were instituted in such areas as social insurance and labor legislation. The most important Finnish war criminals, including R. Ryti and V. Tanner, were convicted in 1946. In Paris in 1947, Finland signed a peace treaty with the states it was at war with. In April 1948 the USSR and Finland signed an agreement on friendship, cooperation, and mutual assistance, which was renewed in 1955 and again in 1970. Also in 1948, the government of the USSR reduced the amount of reparations still to be paid by Finland 50 percent ($73.5 million).

After the SDPF abrogated its agreement of cooperation with the SKDL and the Agrarian Party in May 1948, reactionaries put a stop to the progressive development of the country. A one-party government headed by the right-wing Social Democrat K. Fagerholm was formed in July 1948. Antidemocratic forces took advantage of this government to shift Finland’s foreign policy to the right. This change, together with a decline in the working people’s standard of living, led to a deterioration of the domestic political situation in the late 1940’s and early 1950’s.

The Finnish working people stubbornly struggled against the government, which was forced to resign in 1950. It was succeeded by a coalition government composed mainly of the Agrarian Party and the Swedish People’s Party and headed by the Agrarian U. K. Kekkonen. The new government adopted a foreign policy aimed at developing friendly relations and cooperation with the USSR. This policy was supported by Finland’s president J. K. Paasikivi (elected March 1946) and by Kekkonen, who succeeded Paasikivi as president in March 1956; in fact, Finland’s postwar foreign policy of friendship with the USSR came to be known as the Paasikivi-Kekkonen line. An important role in the formulation and strengthening of this policy was played by the CPF, which from its creation had consistently advocated friendship between the two countries. Since the mid-1960’s the SDPF has also supported the Paasikivi-Kekkonen line.

In 1955, in view of the growing confidence between the two countries, the USSR renounced ahead of schedule its right to lease Porkkala Peninsula; Finland had granted the lease to the Soviet Union for the construction of a naval base in accordance with the terms of the armistice of 1944; the USSR also gave the equipment of the base to Finland free of charge and withdrew Soviet armed forces from the territory. The first long-term (five-year) Soviet-Finnish trade agreement was signed in 1950; it was the first such arrangement in the history of trade relations between socialist and capitalist countries. A Soviet-Finnish agreement on scientific and technical cooperation was concluded in 1955. In late 1955 Finland was admitted to the United Nations; on October 8, 1955, it joined the Nordic Council.

Between 1950 and 1965 the major political forces of Finland—the SKDL, the SDPF, and the Agrarian Party—had substantial representation in Parliament; on the average they polled, respectively, 22 percent, 25 percent, and 23 percent of the vote in parliamentary elections. However, lack of cooperation among them as well as the growing influence of right-wing forces contributed to continued political instability in Finland. Between 1950 and 1965,17 governments held office. During the same period, and later as well, there were several caretaker governments. The Finnish working people fought for their rights and interests, with approximately 500,000 taking part in the general strike of 1956. The leadership of the SDPF followed a policy of anti-Sovietism and close cooperation with the bourgeoisie; as a result, the SDPF was isolated in the government, its position was weakened, and the left-wing opposition broke away from the party in 1959 to form the Social Democratic League of Workers and Small Farmers. Bourgeois coalition governments dominated by the Agrarian Party held office from 1959 to 1965.

In the postwar period, conditions were favorable for economic development in Finland. The government’s peace-seeking foreign policy and the expansion of trade and economic ties with the USSR and other socialist countries contributed to the formation of a diversified economy and to a faster growth of industrial output than most West European countries experienced. Agriculture was increasingly mechanized and intensified. The economy was marked by a high degree of centralization and concentration of capital and production.

After the parliamentary elections of 1966, which brought a majority to the workers’ parties, the Social Democrat R. Paasio formed a coalition government composed of the SDPF, the SKDL, the Center Party, and the Social Democratic League of Workers and Small Farmers. The same parties made up the government of the Social Democrat M. Koivisto (1968–70) and the government of A. Karjalainen of the Center Party (1970–71).

Beginning in 1968 the development of state monopoly capitalism in Finland took the form of various income policies aimed at the regulation of economic and social development. These policies met with increasing opposition from the working people. In the 1970 parliamentary election, the parties then in power received 15 percent fewer votes than in the previous election, and they lost 29 seats; in the spring of 1971, members of the SKDL were removed from the government. From 1971 to 1975 the SDPF and the Center Party were the main constituents of the coalition governments, including the one headed by the Social Democrat K. Sorsa (1972–75).

The early 1970’s were marked by an intensification of the crises affecting the economy and the political life of Finland. Moreover, social contradictions and interparty and intraparty struggles intensified; as a result, Parliament was dissolved in 1972 and 1975 and elections were held ahead of schedule. The cost of living rose dramatically, increasing 7.1 percent in 1972,11.7 percent in 1973, 11.4 percent in 1974, and 17.8 percent in 1975; unemployment also increased—from 2.2 percent of the labor force in 1975 to 6 percent in 1976. The combined effect of inflation and unemployment led to a mass movement of the working people. There were 838 strikes with 408,000 participants in 1971, 1,009 strikes with 678,000 participants in 1973, 1,800 strikes with 371,000 participants in 1974, and 3,200 strikes in 1976. Most of these work stoppages took place without the consent of the trade union leadership.

With the deepening crisis of the capitalist economy, the increasing integration of the world economy, and the intensification of class contradictions in the country, the primary efforts of the Finnish governments in the first half of the 1970’s were aimed at strengthening the regulatory functions of the state. The measures adopted by the Finnish governments—such as temporary price controls, improvements in certain social benefits, and increases in appropriations to provide opportunities for employment—did not yield any notable results. In the mid-1970’s the rate of growth of the Finnish economy slowed, the cost of living continued to rise, and the situation of the working people worsened although the monopolies continued to make large profits.

A caretaker government of nonparty officials came to power in June 1975; the new prime minister was K. Liinamaa. It was replaced in November 1975 by M. Miettunen’s coalition government, which was formed by the SDPF, the SKDL, the Center Party, the Swedish People’s Party, and the Liberal People’s Party; ministerial positions were also granted to a few “experts.” In the fall of 1976 this government was dissolved as a result of disagreements over economic and social policies, and Miettunen formed a second government, which included the Center Party, the Liberal People’s Party, and the Swedish People’s Party. It lasted until May 1977 and was succeeded by a coalition government of the majority. The new government was headed by Sorsa (until May 1979) and was composed of the SDPF, the SKDL, the Center Party, the Swedish People’s Party, and the Liberal People’s Party.

The democratic forces, which advocate the progressive development of Finland and a strengthening of its peace-loving foreign policy, are struggling for the establishment of effective cooperation among the major political forces representing the working strata of the population—that is, the SKDL, the SDPF, and the Center Party. In the parliamentary elections of 1975 (held ahead of schedule), these parties received 18.9 percent, 24.9 percent, and 17.7 percent of the vote, respectively. Proposals for a program of cooperation were adopted at the Seventeenth Congress of the CPF in May 1975.

The good relationship between Finland and the USSR and the desire to develop and expand mutually advantageous forms of cooperation have found expression in several agreements signed in the 1960’s and 1970’s. These include agreements on cultural cooperation (1960), on the lease by Finland of the Soviet part of the Saimaa Canal (1962), on the formation of a permanent intergovernmental commission for economic cooperation (1967), on the development of economic, technical, and industrial cooperation (1971), and on cooperation in the natural and social sciences (1975). In 1974 agreements were concluded on certain legal questions, on cooperation in energy, navigation, and the construction of the Kostomuksha Ore-dressing Combine, and on long-range scientific and technological programs. A long-range program extending to 1990 for the development and expansion of cooperation in trade, economics, industry, science, and technology was signed by Finland and the USSR in Moscow in May 1977. Cooperation is developing not only between governmental agencies of the two countries but also between public organizations. Relations with the CPSU in addition to those of the CPF, were established by the SDPF in 1968 and by the Center Party in 1970. In May 1973, Finland concluded an agreement on cooperation with the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (COMECON).

Finland maintains close relations with the Western countries, especially Sweden, the Federal Republic of Germany, Great Britain, and the USA. It became an associate member of the European Free Trade Association in 1961 and joined the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development in 1968. In 1973 it concluded an agreement on free trade of industrial goods with the European Economic Community (EEC). Finland declared, however, that the agreement would not bind it politically or affect its foreign policy, which advocates the development of Finnish-Soviet relations in accordance with the Agreement on Friendship, Cooperation, and Mutual Assistance of 1948 and the Soviet-Finnish Declaration of Apr. 6, 1973 (adopted on the 25th anniversary of the 1948 agreement). The Finnish government also stated that Finland would abrogate the agreement with the EEC if the agreement damaged Finland’s relations with the USSR. In 1973, Finland concluded an agreement with the European Coal and Steel Community.

Finland has undertaken a number of important initiatives for ensuring peace and security in Europe. In 1963, 1967, 1974, and 1978 it joined in declarations maintaining northern Europe as a nuclear-free zone, and in 1965 it concluded an agreement aimed at ensuring peace on the Finnish-Norwegian border. On Aug. 8, 1963, Finland signed the Nuclear Test-Ban Treaty, and on July 1, 1968, it became a party to the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty. In 1969, Finland declared its readiness to help organize the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe, the first and third sessions of which were held in Helsinki in July 1973 and in July and August 1975, respectively. On Aug. 1, 1975, President Kekkonen signed the Final Act of the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe on behalf of the Finnish Republic.


Lenin, V. I. “Protest Finliandskogo naroda.” Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 5.
Lenin, V. I. “Priblizhenie razviazki.” Ibid., vol. 12.
Lenin, V. I. “Tsar’ protiv finskogo naroda.” Ibid., vol. 19.
Lenin, V. I. “Pokhod na Finliandiiu.” Ibid.
Lenin, V. I. “Rezoliutsiia VI (Prazhskoi) Vserossiiskoi konferentsii RSDRP.” Ibid., vol. 21.
Lenin, V. I. “Finliandiia i Rossiia.” Ibid., vol. 32.
Kuusinen, O. V. Izbr. proizv. Moscow, 1966.
Laidinen, A. P. Ocherki istorii Finliandii vtoroi pol. XVIII v. Leningrad, 1972.
Zherbin, A. S. Formirovanie promyshlennogo proletariata v Finliandii vo vtoroi pol. XIX v. Moscow-Leningrad, 1963.
Suni, L. V. Finliandsko-russkie torgovye otnosheniia vo vtoroi pol. XIX v. (1858–1885). Tartu, 1963.
Bobovich, I. M. Russko-finliandskie ekonomicheskie otnosheniia nakanune Velikoi Oktiabr’skoi sotsialisticheskoi revoliutsii. Leningrad, 1968.
Kiaiviariainen, I. I. Mezhdunarodnye otnosheniia na severe Evropy v nach. XIX v. i prisoedinenie Finliandii k Rossii v 1809 g. Petrozavodsk, 1965.
Kornilov, G. D. Russko-finliandskie tamozhennye otnosheniia v kon. XIX–nach. XX vv. Leningrad, 1971.
Vlasova, M. N. Proletariat Finliandii v gody pervoi russkoi revoliutsii (1905–07). Petrozavodsk, 1961.
Koronen, M. M. Finskie internatsionalisty v bor’be za vlast’ Sovetov. Leningrad, 1969.
Ingul’skaia, L. A. V bor’be za demokratizatsiiu Finliandii (1944–1948). Moscow, 1972.
Siukiiainen, I. I. Revoliutsionnye sobytiia 1917–1918 gg. v. Finliandii. Petrozavodsk, 1962.
Kholodkovskii, V. M. Revoliutsiia 1918 v Finliandii i germanskaia intervenisiia. Moscow, 1967.
Petrov, V. Finliandiia v planakh imperialisticheskikh derzhav v 1918–1920 gg. Petrozavodsk, 1961.
Pokhlebkin, V. SSSR-Fintiandiia: 260 let otnoshenii, 1713–1973. Moscow, 1975.
Barten’ev, T., and lu. D. Komissarov. Tridtsat’ let dobrososedstva. Moscow, 1976. (Contains bibliography.)
Iz istorii Kommunisticheskoi partii Finliandii. Moscow, 1960. (Translated from Finnish.)
Kekkonen, U. Finliandiia i Sovetskii Soiuz: Rechi, stat’i, interv’iu, 1952–1975. Moscow, 1975. (Translated from Finnish.)
Smirnov, V. Lenin Suomen vaiheissa. Helsinki, 1970.
Suomen ulkopolitiikka. Helsinki, 1975.
Jutikkala, E., and K. Pirinen. A History of Finland. New York, 1962.
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Lundin, C. Finland in the Second World War. Bloomington, 1957.
Huttonen, V. Täysivaltainen kan sakunta 1917–1939. Porvoo, 1968.
Huttonen, V. Täysi-ikäinen kansakunta 1939–1973. Porvoo-Helsinki, 1974.
Kähkölä, P., T. Pihlajaniemi, and S. Pyyluoma. Toinen tasavalta. Helsinki, 1976.


Maliniemi, A., and E. Kivikoski. Suomen historiallinen bibliografia, 1901–1925, parts 1–2. Helsinki, 1940.
Vallinkoski, J., and H. Schauman. Suomen historiallinen bibliografia, 1926–1950, vols. 1–2, Helsinki, 1955–56.
Vallinkoski, J., and H. Schauman. Suomen historiallinen bibliografia, 1544–1900. Helsinki, 1961.
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Julkinen, M., and A. Lehikoinen. A Select List of Books and Articles in English, French, and German on Finnish Politics in the 19th and 20th Centuries. Turku, 1967.
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L. V. SUNI (to 1918) and V. G. FEDOROV (since 1918)

Political parties. The Social Democratic Party of Finland (SDPF; Suomen Sosialidemokraattinen Puolue) was founded in 1918 by right-wing Social Democrats after the disintegration of the Finnish Workers’ Party, which had been founded in 1899 and had been renamed the Social Democratic Party of Finland in 1903. A member of the Socialist International, the SDPF had approximately 100,000 members in 1976.

The Center Party (Keskustapuolue), which was founded in 1906, was called the Agrarian Party (Agrarian Union) until October 1965. It had 265,000 members in 1975.

The Communist Party of Finland (Suomen Kommunistinen Puolue), was founded on Aug. 29, 1918. In 1975 it had more than 46,000 members.

The Liberal People’s Party (Liberaalinen Kansanpuolue) was founded in 1965 through the merger of the Finnish People’s Party and the Union of Freethinkers, both of which were founded in 1951. The Liberal People’s Party had 18,700 members in 1975.

The Swedish People’s Party (Svenska Folkspartiet Finland) was founded in 1906. It had 42,000 members in 1975.

The National Coalition Party (Kansallinen Kokoomus), which was founded in 1918, had 78,000 members in 1975.

The Finnish Rural Party (Suomen Maaseudun Puolue) was founded in 1959 and was called the Small Farmers’ Party until 1966. The party had approximately 30,000 members in 1975.

The Party for the Unity of the People of Finland (Suomen Kansan Yhtenäisyyden Puolue), was founded in 1972 as a result of a split in the Rural Party. The party had 15,000 members in 1975.

The Finnish Christian League (Suomen Kristillinen Liitto), which was founded in 1958, had 13,000 members in 1975.

The Constitutionalist People’s Party of Finland (Suomen Perustaslaillinen Kansanpuolue) was founded in 1973.

Trade unions and other public organizations. The Central Organization of Finnish Trade Unions was founded in June 1969 through a merger of the Central Federation of Finnish Trade Unions (founded 1930), the Finnish Trade Unions Association (founded 1960), and several other organizations. The Central Organization had more than 900,000 members in 1976. The Central Confederation of Salaried Employees had 287,000 members in 1975. The Central Union of Organizations of Technical Specialists had 74,000 members in 1975.

The Finnish People’s Democratic League (SKDL; Suomen Kansan Demokraattinen Liitto) is a mass public and political organization that aids the cooperation of Finland’s democratic forces. It was founded in 1944 by the CPF and by left-wing Social Democrats. The member organizations of the SKDL include the CPF (which plays a leading role in the association), the Democratic Women’s League of Finland, and the Democratic Youth League of Finland. The Finnish Allies of Peace was founded in 1949. The Finland-USSR Society, which was founded in 1944, had 300,000 members in 1976. Finland has more than 40 societies of friendship with other countries.


General state of the economy. Finland is an industrial and agricultural country with a high level of capitalist development. In 1975 industry and construction accounted for 45 percent of the gross national product, agriculture and forestry for 11.6 percent (agriculture proper for 6.1 percent), trade and banking for 13.4 percent, transport for 6.8 percent, and services for 18.3 percent.

In the postwar period the Finnish economy developed on the whole under favorable conditions, largely because of the development of relations with the Soviet Union and other socialist countries; these economic ties reduced Finland’s dependence on capitalist markets. The postwar years saw the creation of a diversified economy. The rate of growth of industrial output was higher than in several other capitalist countries. By the beginning of the 1970’s, output was four times higher than before the war. Agriculture reached a high level of mechanization and intensification. The output of grain and of animal husbandry products exceeded the country’s needs.

The Finnish economy is largely oriented to the foreign market; trade is carried on with a number of foreign countries. Finland is an important supplier of paper and pulp. The machine-building industry accounts for a large part of the country’s exports; in addition to ships, the products of this industry include machines and equipment for the wood-products and pulp and paper industries. Exports of goods and services made up 31 percent of the gross national product in 1974; by contrast, the figure was 20 percent in 1950, 23 percent in 1960, and 27 percent in 1970.

Finland’s economy is marked by a high degree of centralization and concentration of capital and production. The economy is dominated by about 20 families, which own more than 70 percent of the private joint-stock capital. They also occupy key positions in the two largest commercial banks, the United Bank of Finland and the National Bank, which account for 85 percent of the bank capital. In the early 1970’s the 30 largest monopolies accounted for 54 percent of the industrial output, 46 percent of the work force, 70 percent of the industrial property, 60 percent of the investments, and 81 percent of the exports.

The share of the state sector in industry was about 20 percent in 1974; state enterprises employed approximately 18 percent of the labor force. The role of the state is greatest in mining, metallurgy, the chemical industry, petroleum refining, and machine building. The state owns 34 percent of the land and 24 percent of the forests. The largest industrial companies are joint ventures with a predominance of state capital, such as Neste in petroleum refining and the petrochemical industry, Enso-Gutzeit in forest industry products and machine building, Kemira in the chemical industry, and Valmet in machine building. The largest private concerns are Wärtsilä in shipbuilding, Nokia in electrical engineering and electronics, Rauma-Repola in shipbuilding and other branches of machine building, Tampella in the manufacture of paper-making machines, and Kymmene and Yhtyneet Paperitehtaat in the production of paper. Other large private firms are Kemi, Serlachius, and Kone, which produces elevators and hoisting and conveying equipment. A considerable part of these companies’ output is exported.

Table 2. Employment and output by branch of industry
Branch of industryNumber employedValue of gross output (million markkaa)
Mining ...............5,0006,700123565
Metallurgy ...............7,50017,0006403,836
Metalworking and machine building ...............99,800154,0001,5959,705
Wood products ...............44,50058,0007274,610
Paper ...............34,85050,3001,7408,795
Food products ...............40,90062,6002,70310,323
Ceramics, glass, and building materials ...............13,90022,3002401,507
Chemical products ...............11,30037,3004945,287
Leather and footwear products ...............11,20010,000158486
Textiles and clothing ...............63,40064,7007873,362
Printing and publishing ...............21,40029,9003671,985
Electricity, gas, and water supply ...............14,00021,6008403,992
All industry ...............364,500532,80010,68254,649

The principal monopolies are closely associated with foreign capital and have plants outside Finland. The amount of foreign capital invested in Finland is small and constitutes about 6 percent of the joint-stock capital. Foreign capital is invested in the electrical engineering and food-processing industries and in a number of metalworking, machine-building, and textile companies. Foreign capital also enters the Finnish economy in the form of loans from the USA, Sweden, the Federal Republic of Germany, and other capitalist countries. The USSR grants Finland credits on mutually advantageous terms.

In the mid-1970’s the state of the Finnish economy declined. Unemployment increased and in January 1977 reached 120,000—that is, more than 4 percent of the labor force.

Industry. Industrial enterprises employing 100 or more persons account for most of the industrial output. Although making up approximately 15 percent of the total number of industrial enterprises, they employ about 70 percent of the people working in industry. The number of industrial employees rose from 364,500 in 1959 to 609,000 in 1975.

Table 3. Consumption of energy (percent)
Energy source193819571973
Wood and peat ...............63.439.819
Hydroelectric power ...............12.922.711
Petroleum and petroleum products ...............4.018.855
Coal ...............19.718.715

Substantial changes took place in the structure of industry in the postwar period (see Table 2). In terms of the value of output, the metal industry has become as important as the timber and paper industry, which dominated before World War II. With respect to exports, however, the timber and paper industry has retained its leading position; it accounted for 43 percent of the country’s exports in 1976. The metal industry’s new importance was a result of the modernization and expansion of old machine-building plants and the construction of several new ones in response to (1) increased domestic demand for hardware, machines, and equipment and (2) the need to fulfill reparation requirements and, subsequently, to meet orders from the USSR and other socialist countries.

MINING AND ENERGY. Finland has considerable mineral resources. Mining output increased after the war. In 1974 the mining industry produced 934,000 tons of iron ore (concentrates and pellets), 38,000 tons of copper, and 92,000 tons of zinc. Other minerals mined include nickel (at Nivala), chromites, cobalt, vanadium, lead, pyrites, graphite, feldspar, and asbestos.

Energy is one of Finland’s most critical problems. The country has no mineral fuel, and other energy resources are limited. More than one-half of the fuel consumed is- imported. Table 3 gives a breakdown of energy consumption according to type of energy source. The principal imported fuels are crude oil and petroleum products. In 1974 the country’s output of petroleum products was more than 8.3 million tons.

Finland has a hydroelectric power potential of more than 20 billion kilowatt-hours per year; as of 1973, 11 billion kilowatt-hours had been developed. Most of the potential is located in the north, where hydroelectric systems were built after the war on the Oulu and Kemi rivers. In 1974 the total capacity of Finland’s power plants was 6.79 million kilowatts; hydroelectric plants accounted for 2.32 million kilowatts of this figure. More than 40 percent of the country’s electric power output is produced by hydroelectric plants. The biggest such plants, and their capacities, are as follows: Imatra, 156 megawatts; Oulukoski, 110 megawatts; and Pyhäkoski, 110 megawatts.

An atomic power plant has been constructed at Loviisa with the technical assistance of the Soviet Union. A substantial amount of electricity is imported from neighboring countries, including the USSR. The total electric power imported in 1974 was 3.6 billion kilowatt-hours. A pipeline has been carrying natural gas from the USSR to Finland since 1974.

MANUFACTURING. The metal industry may be divided into metallurgy, metalworking, and machine building, which includes the electrical engineering industry, the production of transport equipment, and ship repair. The leading branches of the metal industry are the production of transport equipment, general machine building, and the electrical engineering industry.

The metallurgical industry underwent considerable expansion in the 1960’s and 1970’s owing to the increased exploitation of mineral reserves and the construction of new plants, the biggest of which were plants of the state-owned metallurgical company Rautarukki at Raahe and Hámeenlinna and plants at Imatra and Koverhare that use mainly scrap metal. Of particular importance in nonferrous metallurgy is the production of electrolytic copper and of zinc at plants in Kokkola.

Finland manufactures a wide range of machines and industrial equipment. An important producer and exporter of machines and equipment for the pulp and paper industry, it accounts for 7 percent of the output and for 10 percent of the exports of all the capitalist countries. The principal manufacturing centers in this branch of industry are Lahti, Vaasa, Karhula, Rauma, and Tampere. Other well-developed branches of machine building include the manufacture of hoisting and conveying equipment (such as freight elevators and cranes), agricultural machinery, equipment for the lumber industry, and road-building and construction equipment. Products of the electrical engineering industry include generators, transformers, electric motors, cables, telephones, manual and automatic telephone central offices, and radio and television sets. Electrical goods are produced mainly at Helsinki; other centers are Turku, Salo, and Porvoo.

Table 4. Output of principal industrial products
Electric power (billion kW-hr) ...............2.98.72225
Cast iron (thousand tons) ...............27.51371,1641,368
Steel (thousand tons) ...............76.5257.41,1691,618
Rolled metal products (thousand tons) ...............97.03187981,087
Electrolytic copper (thousand tons) ...............313436
Electrolytic nickel (thousand tons) ...............0.546.1
Sulfuric acid (thousand tons) ...............28.5186.78451,030
Fertilizers (thousand tons) ...............62.3745.31,0851,476
Sawed coniferous wood (million cu m) ...............6.47.34
Groundwood for sale (thousand tons) ...............1,97596.933.4
Chemical pulp (thousand tons) ...............2,4664,0913,370
Paper (thousand tons) ...............5621,4324,2743,972
Plywood (thousand tons) ...............250411706415
Staple fiber (thousand tons) ...............3729
Cotton cloth (thousand tons) ...............3.713.516.811.5
Ships, launched (thousand gross registered tons) ...............111258252
Motor vehicles, manufactured and assembled (thousand units) ...............1630
Cement (thousand tons) ...............500.31,2571,8362,064
Table 5. Use of arable land and harvest of principal crops
 Area (ha)Harvest (tons)
1Annual average
Wheat ...............259,000176,000219,000448,000409,000559,000
Rve ...............93,00066,00038,000141,000131,00069,000
Barley ...............235,000404,000464,000400,000933,0001,155,000
Oats ...............462,000524,000572,000828,0001,330,0001,423,000
Potatoes ...............74,00060,00049,0001,067,0001,139,000680,000
Sugar beets ...............19,00015,000423,000431,000629,000

Shipbuilding is of considerable importance. The largest of the country’s nine shipyards are at Turku, Helsinki, and Rauma. Finland produces mainly special-purpose vessels, including ferries, lake and seagoing tugs, passenger ships, and freighters. One-half of the icebreakers in the world are made in Finland; the country produces the world’s biggest diesel icebreakers. Platforms with drilling equipment for offshore oil extraction are also manufactured. In addition, Finland still produces wooden vessels, such as sailboats, schooners, cutters, and motorboats. Most of the vessels built are for foreign orders.

The automotive industry produces tractors, trucks, and buses. In addition, passenger cars are assembled from imported parts by the Swedo-Finnish firm Saab-Valmet. The automotive industry is centered at Helsinki, Hämeenlinna, Tampere, and Jyväskylä.

The forest industries are highly diversified. The two principal branches are the wood-products industry and the pulp and paper industry. The wood-products industry includes sawmilling and the manufacture of furniture, prefabricated buildings, and various components of structures; the pulp and paper industry produces groundwood, sulfite pulp, sulfate pulp, paper, and paper-board. Finland has less than 1 percent of the world’s timber reserves; according to data of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, the figure is 0.6 percent. Nevertheless, the country is among the capitalist world’s biggest producers and exporters of forest industry products. The wood-products and pulp and paper industries account for more than one-fourth of the value of Finland’s gross industrial output and for almost one-half of the value of its exports.

The big sawmills are located on the lower courses of floatable rivers. Plywood, particle board, and matches are among the products manufactured. The furniture industry, which is centered at Lahti, is of considerable importance. Prefabricated houses, saunas, cabins, and other types of buildings are produced. The principal centers of wood housing construction are the cities of Varkaus and Joensuu in the lake district and the cities of Rauma, Turku, and Kemi.

The pulp and paper industry, which accounts for the greater part of the exports of forest industry products, produces chiefly pulp, mainly chemical pulp, and paper. With regard to pulp, Finland accounts for 5 percent of the world output and 7 percent of world exports. The country’s share of world output and exports is 6 and 11 percent, respectively, in the case of newsprint and 4 and 22 percent, respectively, in the case of writing and printing paper. Wastes from sawmills and wood-products plants make up approximately 30 percent of the paper and pulp industry’s raw materials. This circumstance affects the location of the industry’s plants. The chief regions for paper and pulp production are the valley of the Kymi River in the southeast and the coast of the Gulf of Bothnia.

The principal export centers for the forest industries are Kotka, Kemi, and Pori.

The chemical industry is developing rapidly; its growth rate is much greater than the average annual rate for industry as a whole. Petroleum refining accounts for more than two-fifths of the output of the chemical industry; the manufacture of plastics, paints, synthetic fibers, and nitrogenous and phosphate fertilizers is responsible for more than one-third of the output; and the manufacture of household chemical products makes up one-fifth of the output. The manufacture of sulfuric acid, which is used in the pulp and paper industry, is of great importance. The chemical industry is located primarily at Helsinki, Turku, Tampere, and Oulu; petroleum refining is carried on at Porvoo and Naantali.

Light industry and the food-processing industry work mainly for the domestic market. Products of light industry include textiles, clothing, leather goods, footwear, glass, porcelain, and building materials. Tampere is the chief textile center. Food products, particularly butter and cheese, are made throughout the country, but especially in the southwest.

Figures on the development of industrial output are given in Table 4.

Agriculture and forestry. Agriculture and forestry are closely linked in Finland, which is one of the most northern countries to have a well-developed agriculture. Livestock, dairy products, and eggs are the mainstays of Finnish agriculture; 75 percent of the agricultural output is in these areas. As of 1973, 2.7 million hectares (ha), or 8.1 percent of the country’s area, was in agricultural use; almost all of this land was under cultivation. Figures on the use of the arable land, the harvest of principal crops, the number of livestock and poultry, and animal and poultry husbandry production are given in Tables 5,6, and 7.

Most farms are small. Of the 266,000 farms existing in 1973, 176,000 had less than 5 ha of arable land. Since in practice farms must have more than 10 ha of arable land to provide a sufficient income, many small farmers supplement their agricultural earnings with income from the felling of timber (the average farm has 35 ha of forest) or from other work. Hired labor is used on only 5 percent of the farms. Finnish farms may be divided into three groups according to the amount of arable land they have: the 77.4 percent of farms with less than 10 ha account for about 45 percent of the total arable land; the approximately 17 percent with 10–20 ha account for 32 percent of the arable land; and the approximately 5 percent with more than 20 ha account for 23 percent of the arable land. The bankruptcy of small farms and the concentration of land in the hands of big owners are proceeding at an accelerating pace. Between 1969 and 1974, 39,000 farms went bankrupt; most of them had 10 ha of arable land or less.

Table 6. Number of livestock and poultry
1Annual average
2Figure for 1974
Cattle ...............2,111,0001,873,0001,843,000
cows ...............773,000
Hogs and pigs ...............590,0001,047,0001,120,000
Sheep ...............249,000189,000124,000
Horses ...............215,00090,00038,000
Reindeer ...............191,000145,000234,0002
Poultry ...............6,700,0008,300,0009,400,000

In addition to livestock raising, the growing of grain is very important in the southern and central regions. The marketing and processing of agricultural output are to a considerable degree controlled by monopolies. The main crops are feed crops, such as oats, barley, and forage grasses. Agriculture is highly mechanized; 175,000 tractors and 34,000 combines were in use in 1974. The cereal crops have high average yields; in 1975, for example, the wheat yield was 2,940 kg/ha, and the rye yield was 1,830 kg/-ha. Milk production is also high; in 1974 the average cow produced 3,974 kg. Reindeer are raised in the northern regions.

Table 7. Animal and poultry husbandry production (tons)
1 Annual average
Milk ...............3,725,0003,310,0003,086,000
Butter ...............100,00087,00078,000
Cheese ...............34,00041,00050,000
Meat ...............187,000244,000242,000
Eggs ...............47,40065,00076,400

FORESTRY. Forestry is one of the oldest branches of the Finnish economy. Forests cover 18.9 million ha. As of 1974, the country’s timber reserves totaled 1.5 billion cu m. Pine made up 44 percent of this amount, and spruce 38 percent. The remaining 18 percent was accounted for by birch and other hardwoods. Two-thirds of the forest lands are privately owned; if the holdings of joint-stock companies are included, the figure rises to three-fourths. About 50–55 million cu m of timber are cut each year. Forestry and timber flotation employ 65,000 people, in addition to a substantial number of farm laborers, who make up the largest contingent employed in this branch of the economy.

FUR FARMING. Fur farming is of some importance. Mink (3.5 million animals in 1974), silver foxes, and arctic foxes are raised in cages. Most of the fur farms are located in the coastal zone, especially along the Gulf of Bothnia. In the 1970’s Finland became one of the leading fur exporters in the capitalist world.

FISHING. The annual fish catch is about 100,000 tons, 80 percent of which is caught in the sea. The principal commercial fish are Baltic herring, pike, salmon, and whitefish.

Transportation. Railroad tracks in use in 1976 totaled about 6,000 km in length. As of 1970, railroads accounted for 2.8 percent of the passenger traffic and for 26.4 percent of the freight traffic. Finland has about 40,000 km of national and provincial roads. In 1975 the number of motor vehicles was 1.1 million; most were passenger cars. As of 1970, highway transport accounted for 27.3 percent of the passenger traffic and 53.6 percent of the freight traffic. The importance of the Saimaa Canal, part of which is in the USSR and is leased to Finland, is increasing. The major part of the passenger and freight traffic to and from other countries is by sea. The tonnage of the merchant marine exceeded 2 million gross registered tons in late 1975. The volume of freight handled by the main seaports in 1975 was as follows: Helsinki, 5.8 million tons; Turku, 3 million tons; Kotka, 2.6 million tons; and Hamina, 1.8 million tons. Among the oil ports, Shöldvik handled 10 million tons, and Naantali 5 million tons. Because of the use of icebreakers, sea navigation is possible throughout the year. There are two airlines, Finnair and Kar-Air.

Foreign economic relations. Finland’s share of the foreign trade of the capitalist world is about 1 percent. Only Canada and Sweden, however, are bigger exporters in the areas of wood products and of pulp and paper. In 1976 the principal branches of the economy serving the foreign market, and their shares of the country’s exports, were as follows: wood-products industry and pulp and paper industry, 44 percent; metal industry, 34 percent; textile and clothing industries, 8 percent; chemical industry, 7 percent; and agriculture and forestry, 3 percent. Of the country’s imports, 62 percent were raw materials, 6 percent were fuels and lubricants, 17 percent were finished industrial goods (mainly equipment and machinery), and 14 percent were consumer goods. Finland imports more than it exports. The foreign trade deficit is covered mainly by loans.

The European capitalist countries play the most prominent role in Finland’s foreign trade. In 1976 they accounted for 61 percent of the country’s exports and 58 percent of its imports. In the same year the socialist countries accounted for 23.7 percent of the exports and 21.8 percent of the imports, and the USA accounted for 2.8 percent of the exports and 5.2 percent of the imports. Finland’s chief trade partners are the USSR, Sweden, the Federal Republic of Germany, and Great Britain. Its trade relations with the developing countries are expanding.

Economic cooperation between Finland and the USSR has been based on a series of five-year trade agreements, the first of which was signed in 1950 for the period from 1951 to 1955. An important role in cooperation between the two countries has also been played by an agreement concluded in 1972 on a long-term program for the development of trade, industrial cooperation, and specialization.

The chief products purchased by the USSR from Finland include ships, industrial equipment, electrical engineering goods, pulp, and paper. The Soviet Union exports to Finland oil, gas, petroleum products, coal, coke, cotton, feed, fertilizers, metals, motor vehicles, machines, and various types of industrial equipment. Substantial cooperation takes place in the areas of manufacturing and technology. Power installations and other industrial facilities have been built in the USSR and Finland through the joint efforts of the two countries. Implementation began in 1977 of a long-term program for the development and expansion of cooperation in trade, economics, industry, science, and technology between Finland and the USSR; the program is to last until 1990.

MONETARY UNIT. The monetary unit is the markka. Finland adopted a floating exchange rate in 1973.

Internal differences. From the point of view of economic geography Finland may be divided into three parts: the southwest, the lake region and the north.

The most favorable natural conditions are found in the southwest, which makes up about 25 percent of the country’s area and contains more than 60 percent of its population. The southwest is the country’s chief economic region; it produces more than two-thirds of the industrial output and the major part of the agricultural output. Its industry uses primarily imported raw materials and fuel. The southwest is the most urbanized part of Finland. More than 70 percent of the country’s urban population lives in the region, and it is the location of the biggest cities—Helsinki, Turku, and Tampere.

The lake region, which includes the Kymi River valley and most of the lake plateau, accounts for 25 percent of Finland’s area and for 26 percent of its population. The region’s forest industries are well developed and yield 24 percent of Finland’s total industrial output. Agriculture in the lake region is not very intensive. Small farms predominate; three-fourths of the total farm area are covered by forest. The most industrialized parts of the region are the shores of Lake Saimaa and the coast of the Gulf of Finland. The principal branches of the region’s economy are hydroelectric power, the forest industries, metallurgy, and the chemical industry. The region contains about 21 percent of Finland’s urban population. The main cities are Kotka, Kuopio, and Jyväskylä.

The north covers about 50 percent of Finland’s area and contains 13 percent of its population. It is a region of considerable potential resources. The economy is dominated by forestry and such new industries as metallurgy and chemical products. The north accounts for about 9 percent of Finland’s industrial output, 7 percent of the country’s industrial employees, and about 8 percent of its urban population. The main cities are Oulu, Kemi, and Rovaniemi.


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Rozdorozhnyi, I., and V. Fedorov. Finliandiia: nash severnyi sosed. Moscow, 1966.
Sel’ skoe khoziaistvo Finliandii. Moscow, 1969.
Piskulov, Iu. V., and L. D. Gradobitova. Sever i integratsiia. Moscow, 1972.
Goloshubov, Iu. I. Skandinaviia i problemy poslevoennoi Evropy. Moscow, 1974.
Piskulov, Iu. V. Mnogolikaia Skandinaviia. Moscow, 1975.
Seppänen, E. Oy Suomi: Finland Ab. Helsinki, 1975.

The armed forces, called defense forces, are composed of an army, an air force, and a navy. The president is the supreme commander. Direct control of the armed forces is exercised by the chief of the defense forces through the Defense Staff. Finland has compulsory military service. Males who have attained the age of 18 years are drafted. The term of active military service ranges from eight to 11 months.

As of late 1975, the total strength of the armed forces was about 40,000 men. The army had 34,000 men and was composed of six infantry brigades, one armored brigade, eight independent infantry battalions, three field artillery regiments, one independent field artillery battalion, two coast artillery regiments, one independent coast artillery battalion, one antiaircraft regiment, and four antiaircraft battalions. The army is equipped with foreign-made tanks, armored transports, and artillery. The manpower of the air force in 1975 was 3,000, and it had about 45 combat planes. The navy, whose strength was about 3,000 men, had four frigates, four missile craft, 21 patrol boats, one minelayer, and landing craft.

Medicine and public health. In 1975, Finland had a birth rate of 14.2 per 1,000 inhabitants and a mortality rate of 9.4 per 1,000; the infant mortality rate was 10.0 per 1,000 live births. In 1950 the birth rate was 24.5 and the infant mortality rate was 44. The average life expectancy in 1971 was 66 years for men and 73.6 years for women; the corresponding figures for 1951–55 were 63.4 years and 69.8 years, respectively. The main causes of death are cardiovascular diseases, malignant tumors, and accidents. The most common infectious diseases are influenza, acute respiratory ailments, venereal diseases, tuberculosis, infectious hepatitis, and children’s infections. There are no significant differences in regional pathology.

Finland’s institutions for medical-preventive treatment are administered by the Minstry for Social Affairs and Health and by public health inspectors of self-governing province and district agencies. The state social insurance system partially reimburses medical costs and pays disability benefits.

In 1972 there were 746 hospitals with 57,300 beds, or 12.3 beds per 1,000 inhabitants. Of these hospitals, 689 were state-administered hospitals, with 56,100 beds. Outpatient care is provided by general practitioners and specialists, either in their own offices or in hospital polyclinics and in children’s and women’s consultation clinics. In 1973 there were 5,800 physicians, or one per 800 inhabitants, 3,000 dentists, 4,600 pharmacists, and more than 32,000 medical assistants. Physicians are trained at the medical schools of the universities of Helsinki, Turku, and Oulu, and nurses are trained at 26 schools.

In 1971, public health expenditures amounted to 2,114 million marks, or 2.1 percent of the national budget.


Veterinary services. As in the other Scandinavian countries, Finland is free of the most common dangerous animal diseases. An outbreak of cattle tuberculosis was recorded in 1975. Other diseases that have been recorded are bovine malignant lymphoma, demodectic mange, bovine mastitis, plasmacytosis of minks, and erysipelas of swine. Veterinary services are administered by the veterinary department of the Ministry of Agriculture. Each province has one or two province veterinary physicians who supervise the district and municipal veterinary physicians. In 1975 there were 632 veterinary physicians in Finland. Veterinary physicians are trained at a veterinary college in Helsinki. Research in veterinary medicine is conducted at this college and in specialized laboratories, such as a laboratory specializing in diseases of fur-bearing animals that is located in Helsinki.

A law of 1686 stipulated that every citizen aged seven years and older should be taught to read. The school reform of 1866 made Finland’s church and parish primary schools into public schools and placed them under the jurisdiction of local communes. A law of 1921 provided for compulsory eight-year education for children from seven through 15 years old. The educational system is administered by the Ministry of Education; instruction is in Finnish and Swedish. There are private schools in addition to state-administered schools.

The first level of compulsory education is comprised of the first four grades of public school. The second level is of two types. The first type consists of the fifth and sixth grades of public school and the seventh to ninth grades of the secondary school. The second type consists of the first five grades of the lycée. Graduates of the first type may enter primary and secondary vocational-technical schools or teachers’ training institutions for primary school teachers. Graduates of the second type may complete a secondary and later a higher education. A law of 1968 introduced a single standardized nine-year school, which will be implemented in 1986.

A complete secondary education is provided in the upper grades of the lycées, that is, the sixth to the eighth, and sometimes the ninth grades. These upper grades constitute the Gymnasium and have two divisions, a mathematics and a language division. Students graduate from the Gymnasiums by passing examinations for the certificate of completion. Compulsory education covered some 673,000 students in the 1974–75 academic year; there were approximately 320,000 students in Gymnasiums in 1972–73 academic year. Vocational education is provided by state, municipal, and private vocational schools, whose program of instruction ranges from several months to two or three years, depending on the field of study.

Specialized secondary education is provided by technical, pedagogical, and commercial institutes. The term of instruction is three or four years. In the 1972–73 academic year there were some 111,900 students in vocational-technical schools and in specialized secondary educational institutions.

In the 1975–76 academic year, Finland had 17 higher educational institutions, 12 of them state-operated and five private, with a total of more than 75,000 students. They include eight universities: the University of Helsinki, the universities in Jyväskylä, Turku, Oulu, Tampere, Joensuu, and Kuopio, and the Swedish University of Åbo in Turku. There are also three higher technical schools, in Helsinki, Tampere, and Lappeenranta. Finland has five higher commercial schools: a Finnish and a Swedish school in Helsinki, a Swedish school in Turku, and Finnish schools in Turku and Vaasa. The College of Veterinary Medicine is located in Helsinki. Specialized educational institutions include the Sibelius Academy, four institutes of foreign languages, and a military academy.

The largest libraries are the Helsinki University Library (founded 1640; 1.6 million volumes) and the Helsinki City Library (founded 1860; more than 873,500 volumes).

Helsinki’s museums include the National Museum of Finland, founded as a museum of history and ethnology, the Municipal Museum, the Zoological Museum of the University of Helsinki, and the Botanical Garden. Among Turku’s museums are the Historical Museum of Turku, the Turku Art Museum, and the Sibelius Museum. The Ålands Navigation Museum is located in Mariehamn.


Natural and technical sciences. There were no native scientific workers in Finland before the 18th century. The only university, an academy, was established in Åbo (Turku) in 1640; the language of instruction was Swedish. The land and natural resources of Finland were studied by foreign, mainly Swedish, scientists. The development of Finnish science was associated with the influence of the ideas of the Enlightenment and the French Revolution. Contacts with Russian science, which was evolving, and with the scientific schools of other European countries also played a positive role in the development of Finnish science. The three-volume work Travels in North America (1753–61) of the botanist P. Kalm, which contained extensive information on the flora of North America, became well known in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. The research of J. Gadolin, who became a corresponding member of the Imperial St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences in 1811, in chemistry and mineralogy was a landmark in the history of Finnish science; Gadolin’s research resulted in the discovery of the mineral gadolinite and the rare-earth element gadolinium. Kalm and Gadolin contributed to the development of a Finnish scientific terminology and a Finnish-language literature in natural science. Copper deposits at Outokumpu and elsewhere were prospected.

The educational system was improved after the unification of Finland with Russia in 1809. The university was expanded and, in 1827, was transferred from Åbo to Helsinki. An astronomical observatory affiliated with the university was established in Helsinki, and many Finnish scientists were associated with the university. A polytechnic institute, which became a research center, was founded in Helsinki in 1842. The Finnish Meteorological Institute was established in 1838. In the first half of the 19th century, the research of N. Schultén (a corresponding member of the Imperial St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences from 1821) in algebra and other branches of mathematics became well known, along with the research of J. J. Nervander (a corresponding member of the Imperial St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences from 1842) and G. G. Hällström in meteorology and physics and the research of F. W. A. Argelander (a corresponding member of the Imperial St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences from 1826) in astronomy.

The scope of research in natural science was broadened considerably in the second half of the 19th century. At the university, research was carried out at physics, chemistry, physiology, and other laboratories; at anatomical and other institutes; and in a mineralogy study group. Works by E. R. Neovius on descriptive and differential geometry and by R. H. Mellin on the theory of functions were published. A. Donner (a corresponding member of the Imperial St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences from 1897) performed research in photographic astronomy. In 1882 and 1883, a group of Finnish scientists directed by K. S. Lemström carried out a broad program of meteorological observations in the framework of the International Polar Year. The exploration of Finland’s territory was accelerated. Under the direction of C. W. Gyldén, a geographic map of Finland on a scale of 1:400,000 was compiled in the 1860’s and early 1870’s. The Geological Survey of Finland was organized in 1885. The building of the Saimaa Canal between 1845 and 1856 was a major engineering achievement. The first railroad in Finland was constructed in 1862.

E. Hjelt wrote the first Finnish textbook on organic chemistry and a number of works on the history of chemistry. The main works of the botanists W. Nylander and E. A. Wainio on lichenology became well known. Important contributions were made by R. Huit in geobotany, by K. E. Him in algology, and by K. M. Levander in the study of marine and lake plankton. J. A. Palmén (a corresponding member of the Imperial St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences from 1894) published several studies in ornithology, including studies of bird migration, and in comparative anatomy. O. Reuter studied entomology. The development of medicine in Finland owes much to R. Tigerstedt, who wrote a textbook on human physiology (1897–98) and several other works, as well as to the anatomists E. J. Bonsdorff and E. A. Homén, the internist J. Runeberg, and the surgeons J. A. Estlander and F. A. B. Krogius. The works of N. G. M. Grotenfelt on field crop farming and grassland management and of K. G. J. Grotenfelt on the breeding of farm animals (Finnish livestock breeds) paved the way for the reorganization of agriculture in Finland on a scientific basis. Several scientific societies existed in Finland in the late 19th century: the Medical Society of Finland (founded 1835), the Finnish Scientific Society (1838; Hällström was one of its founders), the Geological Society of Finland (1886), the Geographical Society of Finland (1888), and the Engineering Society in Finland (1896).

The early 20th century marked a new stage in the development of Finnish science. The Finnish Academy of Science and Letters was founded in 1908. A geophysical observatory affiliated with the academy was established in 1914 in Sodankylä. Pulp and paper research laboratories were founded in 1916.

Scientific institutes were organized after Finland became independent. The Geodetic Institute and the Finnish Forest Research Institute were founded in 1918. The Biochemical Research Institute was established in 1929. The state-operated Agricultural Research Center, which was founded in 1898, played an important role in the scientific treatment of agricultural problems; it included institutes of agricultural chemistry and physics, plant husbandry, plant breeding, soil science, and animal husbandry. New higher educational institutions were opened, including a university in Turku with instruction in Swedish (1917) and in Finnish (1922), a university in Tampere (1925), and a university of technology in Helsinki (1908). New scientific societies were founded: the Finnish Forestry Society (1909), the Finnish Biological Society (1919; originally organized as a students’ association in 1896), and the Finnish Chemical Society (1919). Scientific work in Finland became more diversified during this period.

In mathematics, the works of E. Lindelöf, the founder of the Finnish school of the theory of functions, and the works of L. V. Ahlfors became well known in the first half of the 20th century. In astronomy, K. F. Sundman provided a theoretical solution of the three-body problem by means of power series that converge very slowly. Between 1911 and 1914, H. Brotherus made the first aerological observations in Finland. The works on organic chemistry of O. Aschan, G. Nyman, and others who used their approach were of great significance for the development of chemistry in Finland. E. M. Tigerstedt produced several inventions, primarily electroacoustic devices.

The traditions of the Finnish botanists were continued by V. Brotherus (a corresponding member of the Imperial St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences from 1910), who wrote a work on the mosses of Fennoscandia in 1923, and by A. Kairamo, J. P. Norrlin, and K. Linkola. A. Cajander’s On Forest Types (1909), Principles of Forest Management (1916–17), and The Theory of Forest Typology (1925) became the basic works on forestry and forest management in Finland. Cajander carried out a major study of Finland’s swamps in 1913 and investigated the meadows in the floodplains of the Lena, Onega, and Kemi rivers. The dendrologist and geologist A. F. Tigerstedt described more than 100 species of coniferous trees. Y. Ilvessalo inventoried Finland’s forest resources between 1921 and 1924, between 1936 and 1938, and between 1951 and 1953. Finnish science became famous throughout the world as a result of the research of A. I. Virtanen in the late 1920’s in applied biochemistry and the processing and preservation of fodder. For developing the AIV system, Virtanen received a Nobel Prize in 1945. Biochemical research was carried out in Finland under Virtanen’s direction; an important result was the development of advanced techniques for the production of butter, cheese, and other dairy products. In medicine, research was performed in phthisiology by A. Ruotsalainen and A. Wartiovaara, in stomatology by M. Äyräpä, and in pharmacology by Y. Airila.

J. J. Sederholm (a corresponding member of the Imperial St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences from 1910 and a foreign corresponding member of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR from 1918) became well known as a result of his research in the geology and petrology of Precambrian rocks and for developing a theory of igneous rocks. P. Eskola was the first to apply physical chemistry to problems in geology and introduced the concept of mineral facies. The geology and geography of Fennoscandia were studied by W. Ramsay (a foreign corresponding member of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR from 1925) and V. Tanner (a foreign corresponding member of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR from 1934). V. Auer directed geographical and geological expeditions in South America.

The role of the state in the organization of scientific research was enhanced during the contemporary scientific and technological revolution in Finland. Subdivisions of the state-operated Technical Research Center of Finland, which was founded in 1942, initiated research in many branches of industry, transportation, construction, forestry, and mining. The Academy of Finland became a national scientific center. New universities were established in Oulu (1959), Jyväskylä (1966), Joensuu (1969), and Kuopio (1966); a university of technology was founded in Lappeenranta (1969). Several institutes affiliated with the University of Oulu were organized, including the Institute of Electron Optics, the Institute of Nuclear Technology, and the Northern Finland Research Institute. At the Finnish university in Turku, the Marine Biological Station was established, together with the Subarctic Research Station, the Institute of Astronomy and Optics, the Institute of Radiobiology, and the Wihuri Physical Laboratory. Research was carried out and specialists were trained in several new fields, such as nuclear physics, low-temperature physics, and molecular biology.

The works of R. H. Nevanlinna, who developed a general theory of meromorphic functions, and the works of P. J. Myrberg on automorphic functions and number theory became well known. In astronomy, Y. Väisälä determined the distances to extremely remote stars. E. Palmen made important contributions to meteorology and geophysics. P. Jauho carried out research in nuclear physics and the use of nuclear energy. O. Ant-Wuorinen performed research in chemistry and chemical engineering. M. Sauramo published major works on the geology and geochronology of the Baltic Sea. Several oceanographic expeditions by Finnish scientific research vessels were organized in the 1950’s and 1960’s; for example, the Angra studied the Atlantic Ocean, and the Aranda investigated the Barents Sea. Major research was carried out in pedology and soil fertility. Important works in these fields include those by J. E. Vuorinen (a foreign member of the V. I. Lenin All-Union Academy of Agricultural Sciences from 1967) on soil fertility and by A. Laitakari on plant breeding. The works of H. Gyllenberg (a foreign member of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR from 1976) and U. J. Vartiovaara on microbiology became well known.

Research has been conducted by F. Simes in the technology of wood processing, by W. Jensen and L. Nordman in the manufacture of paper, and by A. A. Ylinen in construction and structural members. A considerable amount of scientific research and development is carried out by the research divisions of industrial firms. The strong scientific and technical basis of production enables the private firms to manufacture competititive goods, which are exported to many countries, in several branches of machine building. Such goods include equipment for the sawmilling, wood-products, and pulp and paper industries; ships, including icebreakers; and agricultural machinery. Mineral deposits of value to industry were discovered in Finland between the 1950’s and the early 1970’s. Iron ore deposits were discovered, for example, near the city of Otanmöki and on the island of Jussarö. Other discoveries include polygenetic metallic ore deposits in Vihanti, chrome deposits near Kemi, and nickel deposits near the city of Oravainen.

Finland takes part in a number of international scientific programs in, for example, oceanography and geophysics. Since 1969, Finland, the USSR, the German Democratic Republic, the Polish People’s Republic, Denmark, Sweden, and the Federal Republic of Germany have cooperated in the development and application of measures to control the pollution of the Baltic Sea. In accordance with an agreement signed in 1973, Finland has undertaken multilateral cooperation, including joint research and development, with the member countries of the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (COMECON) in such areas as machine building, the chemical industry, and transportation. A Soviet-Finnish commission on scientific and technological cooperation, which includes 23 working groups, was established in 1956. A long-term program of scientific and technological cooperation between the USSR and Finland was undertaken in 1974.


Vysshee obrazovanie i nauchnaia deiatel’nost’ v Finliandii. Helsinki, 1973.
Nordström, W. Academia Aboensis rediviva. Ekenäs, 1968.
Enkvist, T. History of Chemistry in Finland. Helsinki, 1972.
Bonsdorff, B. The History of Medicine in Finland. Helsinki, 1975.
Social sciences,PHILOSOPHY. The study of philosophy in Finland began in the second half of the 18th century, with the adaptation of the ideas of G. von Leibniz, C. Wolff, and J. Locke. H. G. Porthan was a follower of Locke and a critic of Kant. An indigenous school of Finnish philosophy emerged in the early 19th century, when G. I. Hartman developed an original theory of knowledge that was similar to the views of the Scottish school of common sense. Hartman’s disciple K. Söderholm attempted to coordinate Christianity with contemporary German philosophy, mainly the later views of F. Schelling.
The growth of the antifeudal national liberation movement in Finland was accompanied by the increasing influence of Hegelianism, which predominated from the 1820’s to the late 19th century. The most prominent left-wing Hegelian was J. V. Snellmann, the ideologist of the Finnish national movement. K. Rein, who began as a Hegelian, later became a follower of R. Lotze. Hegelianism was opposed by A. W. Bolin, an advocate of L. Feuerbach’s theories who published Feuerbach’s complete works in Finnish.
The late 19th and the early 20th century witnessed the development of experimental psychology in Finland, as seen in the studies of H. Neiglick and A. Grotenfelt. Grotenfelt also published works on the history of philosophy and on the philosophy of history. Aesthetics was the subject of studies by J. Him and S. Krohn. E. A. Westermarck’s works on the history of marriage and of moral ideas gained world renown.
In the 20th century the leading school of philosophy was logical positivism. The head of the Finnish school of logical positivism was E. Kaila. Within this school, modal logic and semantics are presently studied by G. H. von Wright, and mathematical logic and scientific methodology, by U. Saarnio and E. G. Stenius. Interest in the philosophy of history and the philosophy of culture has grown since the 1950’s, as seen in the works of O. T. Ketonen, J. Salomaa, and J. Hintikka. In the field of sociology, the family has been studied by H. Waris, crime by V. Verkko, and the peasantry, education, and theoretical sociology by E. Allardt and Y. Littunen.
Marxism became more widespread in Finland after the founding of the Finnish Communist Party in 1918, and works on Marxism were published by Y. E. Sirola and O. V. Kuusinen. Finnish Marxists focus on dialectical and historical materialism (T. Lehén), the class struggle and changes in the social structure of Finnish society, and the transition from capitalism to socialism.
The centers of philosophical research are the philosophy departments of the universities of Helsinki and Turku. Philosophical journals include Ajatus (since 1926) and Acta Philosophica Fennica (since 1935).
HISTORIOGRAPHY. Finnish historiography originated in the 16th century, after the Lutheran Reformation. The first works of Finnish historiography dealt primarily with the history of the Finnish church, for example, the Episcopal Chronicles of Finland by the bishop P. Juusten (c. 1564; published in the 18th century). From the mid-17th century to the early 19th century the Academy in Åbo (Turku) was the center of historical studies. In 1658, Laurentius Petri Aboicuksen wrote the brief Finnish-language Synopsis of the Chronology of Finland (published 1728). Finnish historiography became a branch of scholarship during the Enlightenment, owing largely to the publication of annotated sources and other works by H. G. Porthan, a professor at the University of Åbo. The achievements of Finnish historiography reflected the growth of the national consciousness of the Finnish people in their struggle against Swedish domination, which lasted from the late 13th century to 1809, and in turn contributed to the growth of this national consciousness.
The autonomy of the Grand Duchy of Finland within the Russian Empire (1809–1917) had a beneficial effect on the development of Finnish historiography. Finland’s ideological and cultural dependence on Sweden was reduced, and Finnish historians began using Russian sources on Finnish history. The development of romanticism gave an impetus to the study of history, as did the Fennoman movement—a movement for the national regeneration of the Finnish people that emerged between the 1820’s and the 1840’s. The Finnish Literary Society, founded in 1831, published historical research and historical sources in its Transactions and its almanac, Suomi. The first popular textbooks on Finnish history by Finnish authors were published by A. I. Arwidsson in Swedish (1832) and by J. Cajan in Finnish (1839). Interest in Finnish history was also fostered by the literary criticism of J. V. Snellmann, the leader of the Fennomans, by the publication of the Karelian-Finnish epic Kalevala by the folklorist E. Lönnrot (1835 and 1849), and by the works of the linguist and ethnographer M. A. Castrén.
In the 1840’s, E. Grönblad began publishing major compilations of Finnish medieval historical sources, drawn mainly from the state archives in Stockholm. The Finnish Historical Society, which was founded in 1864 as a division of the Finnish Literary Society and which became independent in 1875, began publishing its series Historical Archives in 1866, as well as Finnish historical texts.
The founder of Finnish bourgeois nationalist and anti-Swedish historiography was Professor Yrjö-Koskinen, a leader of the Fennomans. His History of the People of Finland (1869–73) was the first attempt to present the history of Finland as a unified process. Beginning in the 1880’s, historians began dealing with the incorporation of Finland into the Russian Empire and with Finland’s internal autonomy, as seen in works by J. R. Danielson-Kalmari and L. Mechelin. The approach of the Finnish historians to these subjects was in sharp opposition to that of the Russian historians who supported the nobility and monarchy.
The progress made in Finnish-language historical studies fostered the emergence of the Swekoman, or Swedish-language, school of historiography in Finland, a product of which was M. G. Schybergson’s History of Finland (1887–89). The Swedish Literary Society of Finland (founded 1885) published works on the history of Finland. A historical association composed of young historians in Helsinki was founded in 1890.
In the late 19th century, Finnish historical science was greatly influenced by German historiography and by positivism. The leading Finnish historians of the first quarter of the 20th century were E. G. Palmen, K. Grotenfelt, C. G. Bonsdorff, K. Blomstedt, and K. R. Brotherius; the most prominent socioeconomic historians were G. Suolahti and V. Voionmaa.
Between 1918 and 1944, historical studies in independent bourgeois Finland were dominated by conservatism, chauvinism, and russophobia. Until the mid-1950’s conservative bourgeois historiography predominated, as represented by J. Jaakkola, E. W. Juva, E. Hornborg, and A. Korhonen; P. Renvall and E. Jutikkala became prominent in the 1960’s.
Until 1944, Finnish Marxist historiography developed abroad, mainly in the USSR; its main representatives were Kuusinen, Y. Sirola, E. Gylling, and L. Lähteenmäki. The defeat of fascism in World War II (1939–45) had a beneficial effect on the development of Finnish historiography. For the first time, such Marxist historians as Lehén and A. Hyvönen could work and publish legally in Finland.
A bourgeois approach (and to some extent a reformist approach) predominates in present-day Finnish historiography. However, since the early 1960’s many nationalist concepts of history have been revised owing to the political shift of Finnish public opinion to the left. Historians have developed new approaches to the relations of medieval Finland and Karelia to Rus’, to the incorporation of Finland into the Russian Empire, to the role played by the October Revolution in Finland’s gaining of independence, to the civil war of 1918 in Finland, and to the responsibility of the Finnish ruling circles for Finland’s collaboration with fascist Germany in World War II.
Subjects of historical studies in Finland in the 1970’s include medieval Finnish history (K. Pirinen, J. Gallén, T. Niitemaa, E. Kuujo, H. Kirkinen, Y. Blomstedt, M. Jokipii, K. Wirilander, P. Virrankoski, O. Nikula, and T. Paloposki), modern history (P. Tommila, T. Torvinen, M. Klinge, E. Pihkala, P. Rommi, and O. Jussila), and contemporary history (K. Korhonen, T. Polvinen, J. Paasivirta, J. Paavolainen, V. Rasila, H. Soikkanen, L. Hyvämäki, and J. Suomi). Further subjects of study are economic history (S.-E. Åstrom), agrarian history (E. Jutikkala), agrarian history and ethnography (K. Vilkuna), ancient Roman history (J. Suolahti), and modern German history (P. Suvanto and A. Kemiläinen). O.-P. Vehviläinen and K. Hovi study the history of international relations of the 20th century.
The major centers of historical research in Finland are the divisions and departments of Finnish and world history of the University of Helsinki (founded 1640 in Turku; in Helsinki since 1828), the Swedish University of Åbo (founded 1917), and the University of Turku (founded 1920). Centers of historical research in Helsinki include the Finnish Academy of Science and Letters (1908), the National Archives (1869), the National Museum of Finland (1893), the Finnish Historical Society (1875), the Historical Association of Swedish-speaking historians (1929), and the Archaeological Society of Finland (1870). The major historical publications are Suomen muinaismuisto seura: Historiallinen aikakauskirja (since 1903), Historiallinen arkisto (since 1866), Historiallissia toimituksia (since 1918), Historisk tidskrift for Finland (since 1916), and SMS aikakauskirja (since 1874).
ECONOMICS. Finnish economic thought became an independent branch of study in the first half of the 18th century. The Academy in Åbo (later the University of Helsinki) began the teaching of economics in the early 1740’s. In the 18th century and the first half of the 19th century, mercantilism was the leading trend in Finnish economics. The works of A. Chydenius, published in the early 1760’s, constituted an exception to this trend: Chydenius formulated the principles of economic liberalism more than ten years before the publication of A. Smith’s Inquiry Into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations (1776). Chydenius’ views did not gain acceptance owing to Finland’s economic backwardness, and economic liberalism was revived only in the mid-19th century, as a result of the industrial revolution and the subsequent rapid economic development of Finland during the 1860’s. An important role in the formulation of economic liberalism was played by Snellmann, L. Mechelin, and J. Tallqvist.
The historical school of vulgar political economy became increasingly important in Finland in the 1870’s. The works of the historian Yrjö-Koskinen and of K. Rein and W. Laing resulted in the predominance of this school, which remained influential in Finland until the 1970’s.
In the 1920’s and 1930’s, Finnish economists devoted considerable attention to the role of the state in Finland’s economy (E. Nevanlinna) and to the effect of the world economic crisis of 1929–33 on the Finnish economy (B. Suviranta).
The first studies on economics by such Marxist authors as A. Tuominen were published in Finland after World War II. In the 1950’s and 1960’s the considerable development of the state sector in the Finnish economy increased the influence of neo-Keynesianism, which became a theoretical basis for the government’s economic policies. The discipline of econometrics, represented by L. Törnqvist, has developed rapidly since the 1960’s.
Finnish economists deal mainly with practical problems and submit recommendations in the fields of finance and currency policy (M. Leppo and M. Tamminen), foreign economic policy (P. Korpinen), and company pricing policies (J. Paakkanen).
The centers of economics in Finland include the Helsinki Research Institute for Business Economics (founded 1938), the Bank of Finland Institute for Economic Research (1944), and the Institute for Economic Research on Workers (1970).
Economists are trained at the Finnish-language Commercial High School of Finland (founded 1911) in Helsinki, the Helsinki Commercial High School (Swedish-language; 1909), the Commercial High School in Turku (1950), the University of Tampere (1925), the Swedish-language Commercial High School in Turku (1927), and the Commercial High School in Vaasa (1966). Finnish economics societies include the Finnish Economic Association (1885), the Economic Society of Finland (Swedish-language; 1894), and the Economic History Society (1952). Economics journals include Taloudellinen katsaus (since 1948), Kansantaloudellinen aikakauskirja (since 1905), Liiketaloudellinen aikakauskirja (since 1952), and Ekonomiska samfundets tidskrift (since 1913).
Scientific institutions. In 1975, Finland had some 400 scientific research institutions and societies, which are classified as government, university, private, and nonprofit or commercial independent organizations. In the early 1970’s, the total number of scientific and engineering workers was about 330,000, including some 93,000 scientists and engineers. As of 1971, 10,200 scientific and engineering workers (0.5 percent of the labor force), including 4,300 scientists and engineers, were employed on a full-time basis in scientific research and development. Approximately 10 percent of Finland’s scientific research personnel were engaged in fundamental research, 40 percent in applied research, and 50 percent in development.
The government’s science policy is developed by the Science Policy Council jointly with the Academy of Finland (see). The council and the academy act as consultative agencies of the government. The planning, coordination, and funding of government research are carried out by various ministries, such as the ministries of defense, trade and industry, agriculture and forestry, and education, as well as by special commissions that have jurisdiction over special research institutes, for example, the atomic energy and defense research commissions. The private sector coordinates individual programs with the national plans.
The government operates 40 scientific research institutes and a number of industrial laboratories. In the early 1970’s, the government institutes and laboratories had 2,500 employees, including approximately 1,000 scientists and engineers. The most important scientific research institutes are the Technical Research Center of Finland (founded 1942), the Agricultural Research Center (1898), the Finnish Meteorological Institute (1838), the Research Center of the Ministry of Defense, and ten government industrial laboratories and research institutes. The Technical Research Center of Finland has 700 employees, including more than 400 scientific workers, and conducts research under contracts with the government and private industry in, for example, woodworking, metallurgy, electrical engineering, and chemistry. The Agricultural Research Center (founded 1898) has more than 500 employees, including 200 scientific workers. The Finnish Meteorological Institute employs more than 220 scientific workers. The government industrial laboratories and institutes, which include the Finnish Pulp and Paper Research Institute, operate on a cooperative basis and employ more than 150 scientists and engineers.
The more than 50 university scientific research institutes and laboratories employ 3,000 specialists with advanced training. More than 60 percent of the specialists are engaged in fundamental research, 30 percent in applied research, and about 10 percent in development; however, as of 1973, only one-third of all the specialists worked on a full-time basis. Some research is commissioned by the government or the private sector.
The private scientific research centers include independent commercial scientific research institutes and the scientific research institutes and laboratories of large industrial and commercial enterprises. Such centers are either privately or publicly funded. In the early 1970’s, more than 200 enterprises had their own scientific research centers or laboratories, which employed about 6,000 scientific and engineering workers (68 percent in development, 30 percent in applied research, and 2 percent in fundamental research); 1,200 of the employees had a higher education. The private scientific research institutions also include 130 scientific societies (as of 1975) and the following three academies: The Finnish Academy of Science and Letters (founded 1908), the Finnish Academy of Technical Sciences (1957), and the Swedish Technical Science Academy in Finland (1921). The main functions of the societies and academies are the promotion of applied research in the interests of developing the national economy and the popularization of contemporary science.
The scientific and technical information system comprises several specialized government and private services whose operation is coordinated by the Finnish Council for Scientific Information and Research Libraries. In 1975, Finnish scientists and engineers patented 293 scientific discoveries and inventions and filed 986 patent applications.
In 1971, the government funded more than 44 percent of the research and development; the private sector financed 55 percent, and foreign and domestic foundations paid for less than 1 percent. The government finances almost all fundamental research and most applied research programs of national importance. It pays for 92 percent of the research and development expenses at the universities and extends large-scale financial aid to many private scientific research institutes and scientific societies. Government expenditures for research and development more than doubled from 1967 to 1972, reaching 241 million markkaa (at current values). In 1971, the total expenditures for research amounted to 435.6 million markkaa, or 0.9 percent of the gross national product, of which 193.3 million markkaa were appropriated by the government. Of the total amount, 70 percent was used for the natural and technical sciences, 11.7 percent for agriculture and forestry, 10.8 percent for the social sciences, 7.3 percent for medical research, and 0.2 percent for other sciences. About one-fifth of the research and development expenses is covered by earnings from pari-mutuel betting and lotteries.
Finland is a member of more than 50 international scientific organizations, including the International Federation for Documentation, the International Association of Theoretical and Applied Limnology, the International Union of Forestry Research Organizations, and the Committee on Space Research (COSPAR). Finland maintains close scientific relations with many other countries, including the USSR. The relations with the USSR are based on intergovernmental agreements on scientific and technological cooperation that were concluded in 1955. Finnish scientists and scientific organizations have taken part in several international research programs, such as the International Quiet Sun Year and international programs in biology.


Istoriia filosofii, vol. 5. Moscow, 1961.
Sovremennaia filosofiia i sotsiologiia v stranakh Zapadnoi Evropy i Ameriki. Moscow, 1964.
Myslivchenko, A. G. “Problemy sovremennoi burzhuaznoi filosofii v stranakh Severnoi Evropy.” In the collection Skandinavskii sbornik, vol. 12. Tallinn, 1967.
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Les Grands Courants de la pensée mondiale contemporaine, vol. 1, part 1. Paris, 1964. Pages 515–34.
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Higher Education and Research in Finland. Helsinki, 1968.

In 1975 there were 94 daily newspapers in Finland, with a total circulation of 2.5 million, and more than 2,000 periodicals. Most of the major Finnish newspapers and magazines are published in Helsinki. They include Helsingin Sanomat (since 1889; called Päivälehti until 1904; circulation 317,000; on Sundays, 355,000), published by the Sanomaa joint-stock company; Aamulehti (since 1881; circulation 124,700; published in Tampere), the organ of the National Coalition Party; Uusi Suomi (since 1847; circulation 86,400), a de facto organ of the National Coalition Party; and Suomenmaa (since 1909; called Maakansaa until September 1965; circulation 32,900), the central organ of the Center Party.

Other major periodical publications are Demari Suomen Sosialidemokraatti (since 1918; circulation 43,000), the central organ of the Finnish Social Democratic Party; the Swedish-language Hufvudstadsbladet (since 1864; circulation 70,000), since 1906 the central organ of the Swedish People’s Party; Ilta-Sanomat (since 1932; circulation 88,000), an evening newspaper; Kansan Uutiset (since 1957; circulation 52,200), the central organ of the Finnish People’s Democratic League and of the Finnish Communist Party (FCP); and Tiedonantaja (since 1969), the organ of the party organizations of the FCP. Suomen Kuvalehti (since 1919; circulation 75,000), a major magazine, is published in Helsinki. The national news agency, the Finnish News Bureau, is a joint-stock company of Finnish newspapers; founded in 1887, it is located in Helsinki.

Radio broadcasting (since 1926) and television broadcasting (since 1956) is directed by the Finnish Broadcasting Company, which has been under government control since 1934. Oy Mainos-TV is a commercial television station. Radio programs are broadcast in Finnish, Swedish, and English.


Finnish literature is written in both Finnish and Swedish. Written literature was preceded by folk songs and works of oral poetry (including runes), which later existed concurrently with written literature and had an important influence on it. The Finnish writing system originated in the 16th century as an outgrowth of the Reformation, which began in Finland in 1521. The first printed books were published by Bishop Micael Agricola (c. 1508 or 1510 to 1557); they included a primer (1542), a Finnish translation of the New Testament (1548), and several collections of the Psalms (1551). Until the early 19th century most books published in Finnish were church books for the use of peasants. The limited sphere of application of the Finnish literary language delayed its development for a long time.

Finland was under Swedish rule from the late 13th century to the early 19th century. In the 18th century the growth of the Finnish national consciousness laid the foundation for the Fennoman movement for national regeneration that developed between the 1820’s and the 1840’s. T. Juslenius (1676–1752) was an early representative of the Fennomans. Attempts were made to compile a Finnish grammar and dictionaries and to portray the history and customs of the Finns.

The second half of the 18th century was marked by the development of enlightened rationalism. The movement for national regeneration became closely associated with progressive, antifeudal critical thought. H. G. Porthan (1739–1804) helped found the humanist society Aurora in Åbo in 1770. In 1771, Porthan published Finland’s first newspaper, in Swedish; the first Finnish-language newspaper was published in 1775. Interest in Finnish history, mythology, and folklore was awakened.

Finnish literature of the 19th century was closely associated with the developing national movement and the formation of the Finnish nation. The separation of Finland from Sweden and Finland’s incorporation into Russia with an autonomous status (1809) promoted the growth of the national consciousness and helped the Finns overcome the Swedish cultural hegemony.

In the first half of the 19th century, Finnish literature was influenced mainly by the traditions of the Enlightenment. The works of the writers J. Juteini (1781–1855) and K. A. Gottlund (1796–1875) dealt with the people and the peasantry. Finland’s Swedish-language literature gave rise to the Turku romanticism of the period between 1810 and 1830, a trend distinct from the Helsinki romanticism of the 1830’s and 1840’s. The most progressive of the Turku romantics was A. I. Arwidsson (1791–1858), whose literary and public activity was associated with Finland’s first national awakening.

The literary and philosophical Saturday Society was founded in Helsinki in 1830. In 1831 its members founded the Finnish Literary Society, still in existence, which collected works of folklore and published periodicals and literary works. The folklorist E. Lönnrot (1802–84) published the folk epic Kalevala (1835; expanded edition, 1849), which was of great importance for the development of the Finnish language and which provided writers with themes and images for many decades. The poet J. L. Runeberg (1804–77) and the philosopher, publicist, and critic J. V. Snellmann (1806–81) also contributed greatly to the development of Finnish culture.

Between the late 1850’s and the 1870’s, the progressive elements in Finnish society brought about socioeconomic and cultural reforms. The Finnish language was used more extensively, and new magazines and newspapers were founded. A. Kivi (1834–72) established modern Finnish literature and wrote the first original Finnish plays and novels. His comedies The Nummi Shoemakers (1864) and The Betrothal (1866) and his novel Seven Brothers (1870) realistically depicted the people’s life. Other important works at this time were the historical novels of Z. Topelius (1818–98) and the poetry and dramas of J. Wecksell (1838–1907); both of these writers wrote in Swedish. K. Kramsu (1855–95), who began publishing in the late 1870’s, wrote socially oriented historical ballads about the heroic rebels of the Club War.

Realism became the dominant trend in Finnish literature in the 1880’s and 1890’s. It was represented by Minna Canth (1844–97), J. Aho (1861–1921), A. Järnefelt (1861–1932), J. Erkko (1849–1906), K. Leino (1866–1919), T. Pakkala (1862–1925), and K. A. Tavaststjerna (1860–98), a Swedish-language writer. The realists belonged to the Young Finns and founded several periodicals that published articles by Aho and Leino defending socially critical art. New themes appeared, and the realists for the first time depicted the urban poor, the workers’ struggle for their rights, the oppression of the working woman, and the tenant farmers’ poverty and longing for land. Canth’s plays The Laborer’s Wife (1885) and Children of a Cruel Lot (1888) had a strong impact and gave rise to heated polemics. Realism was most successful in prose and dramaturgy, for example, in the sociopsycho-logical novels The Daughter of a Clergyman (1885) and The Wife of a Clergyman (1893) by Aho and My Country (1893) by Jarnefelt, and in the novellas Poor Folk (1886) and The Sunken Rock (1887) by Canth.

The major social changes that took place in Finnish society in the early 20th century influenced the development of diverse literary trends. Neoromanticism, which originated in the late 19th century, was represented by E. Leino (1878–1926), the greatest Finnish lyricist, and by J. Linnankoski (1869–1913), Larin Kyösti (1873–1948), L. Onerva (1882–1972), and V. Kilpi (1874–1939). The progressive trends within neoromanticism resulted from Finland’s increasing democratization in the early 20th century and from the revolutionary movement of 1905–07. The neoromantics favored the lyric over the epic, turned away from everyday life toward the unusual and fantastic, made wide use of folklore and mythology, and tended toward grandiose symbolism.

Finland’s proletarian literature was closely associated with the nation’s labor movement. The political and cultural awakening of the Finnish workers took place in a relatively short time. Socialist newspapers were published, and workers’ clubs were founded; these were instrumental in the establishment of a workers’ theater, whose traditions are still alive today. The most prominent proletarian poets were K. Kaatra (1882–1928), K. Uskela (1878–1922), K. Tanttu (1886–1918), and K. Ahmala (1889–1918). The participation of the prose writer Maiju Lassila (1868–1918) in the Finnish Revolution of 1917 was the culmination of a complex spiritual evolution. Lassila wrote the humorous novellas Matchsticks (1910), The Genius (1915), and Resurrected (1916), as well as comedies that satirized the petit bourgeois mentality.

Realist writers at this time included Maria Jotuni (1880–1943), J. Lehtonen (1881–1934), and I. Kianto (1874–1970); however, their mistrust of revolutionary changes and their absence of historical perspective led them to pessimism. Owing to the political reaction that set in after the victory of the counterrevolutionary forces in Finland in 1918, the socially critical trend in literature lost ground. In the works of F. E. Sillanpää (1888–1964) the concept of man as a social being gave way to biologism; Sillanpää regarded a certain innate fundamental principle in man as man’s only significant and unchanging trait. However, in the novel Meek Heritage (1919), which dealt with the Finnish civil war of 1918, Sillanpää sympathized with the victims of the White terror.

The views of the Fire-bearers, a literary group that emerged in the 1920’s, reflected the bewilderment and vague illusions of the new generation of Finnish artists and writers after the defeat of the revolution. The group’s left wing dealt with social problems, as seen in the poetry of K. Vala (1901–44) and in the novellas The Magic Circle (1931) and The Masters and the Shadows of the Masters (1935) by P. Haanpää (1905–55). To counter the increasing influence of fascism in the 1930’s, the leftist writers united in the Kiila group, which included E. Diktonius (1896–1961), A. Turtiainen (born 1904), and Elvi Sinervo (born 1912).

After World War II (1939–45), the democratization of Finnish life contributed to the development of the national culture. Together with the growth of modernism, particularly in poetry, realistic prose and the socially oriented novel continued to develop. Helia Wuolijoki (1886–1954) and O. Paavolainen (1903–64) were outstanding publicist writers. The novel The Unknown Soldier (1954) and the trilogy Here, Under the North Star (1959–62) by V. Linna (born 1920) had a strong social and literary impact. The novels and nonfiction works of P. Rintala (born 1930) expressed an antiwar attitude, and a strong social orientation has marked the works of A. Äikiä (1904–65), Aili Nordgren (born 1908), M. Larni (born 1909), Helvi Hämäläinen (born 1907), V. Meri (born 1928), C. Kihlman (born 1930), and Eeva Joenpelto (born 1921). Wuolijoki completed his previously begun cycle of plays about the women of Niskavuori with several outstanding realistic dramas.

The Marxist-oriented Union of Cultural Workers, which includes writers, was founded in 1972; it has published the journal Kultturivihkot since 1973. Finnish writers are meeting authors from foreign countries with increasing frequency. There have been many recent meetings between Soviet and Finnish writers, and numerous works of Russian and Soviet literature are being translated into Finnish.

A writers’ union was founded in Finland in 1897. Literature and folklore are studied at the universities. The Finnish, or historical and geographical, school of folkloric studies founded by J. Krohn and K. Krohn gained world renown in the first third of the 20th century. The biographical approach to literature was long predominant in Finland. In the 1950’s the New Criticism predominated; sociological and typological interpretations of literature have been major trends in the literary scholarship of the 1970’s.


Finskaia dramaturgiia XIX–XX vv. Moscow-Leningrad, 1960.
Poeziia Finliandii. Moscow, 1962. (Translated from Finnish and Swedish.)
Finskie povesti XIX–XX vv. Leningrad, 1970.
Karkhu, E. G. Finliandskaia literatura i Rossiia 1800–1900), parts 1–2. Tallinn-Moscow-Leningrad, 1962–64.
Karkhu, E. G. Demokraticheskaia literatura sovremennoi Finliandii. Petrozavodsk, 1966.
Karkhu, E. G. Ocherki finskoi literatury nachala XX v. Leningrad, 1972.
Leino, E. Suomalaisia kirjallijoita. Helsinki, 1909.
Kallio, O. A. Uudempi suomalainen kirjallisuus, vols. 1–2. Porvoo, 1928–29.
Tarkiainen, V. Suomalaisen kirjallisuuden historia. Helsinki, 1934.
Koskimies, R. Elävä kansalliskirjallisuus, vols. 1–3. Helsinki, 1944–49.
Palmgren, R. Suuri linja. Helsinki, 1948.
Palmgren, R. Työläiskirjallisuus. Porvoo-Helsinki, 1965.
Palmgren, R. Joukkosydän, vols. 1–2. Porvoo-Helsinki, 1966.
Holmqvist, B. Modern finlandssvensk litteratur. Stockholm, 1951.
Suomen kirjallisuus, vols. 1–8. Helsinki, 1963–70.
Suomen sana, vols. 1–24. Porvoo, 1963–75.
Suomen kirjallisuuden antologia, vols. 1–8. Helsinki, 1963–75.
Laitinen, K. Suomen kirjallisuus 1917–1967. Helsinki, 1967.
Suomen ruotsalaisen lyriikan antologia. Porvoo, 1968.

Remains of oval dwellings with rectangular entrances have been found on sites of the Mesolothic Askola and Suomusjarvi cultures (eighth millennium B.C.) Neolithic remains (third millennium B.C.) include articles from the Pit-comb and Corded-ware cultures, such as rock paintings, perforated slate hammers, decorated with depictions of bear heads and, more rarely, elk heads, carved zoomorphic hafts from stone knives, bone tools, and anthropomorphic idols. In the second half of the first millennium A.D., ornamentation was in an animal style similar to the art of the Germanic tribes.

The 12th and 13th centuries saw the development of stone architecture. Notable examples are the Swedish castle strongholds in Olavinlinna, near the city of Savonlinna, and in Turku, as well as churches reminiscent of the Romanesque churches in Sweden, such as the cathedral in Turku (13th–15th centuries). Small rural stone churches were typical of the 14th century. Rectangular in plan, they had a high gabled roof, a low sacristy on the north side, and a porch on the south side. The walls were made of unworked stone, and the vaults of brick, for example, in churches in Lohja (14th–16th centuries) and Hattula (14th century). Wooden architecture, closely linked with folk art, remained relatively independent of foreign styles, as can be seen in the churches in Tornio (17th century) and Keuruu (18th century).

Late Gothic monumental painting of the 14th and 15th centuries retained elements of folk ornamentation, for example, naively naturalistic details and bright local color. Typical examples are found in churches in Hattula, Taivassalo, and Pernio. Baroque tendencies became much stronger in monumental painting of the 17th and 18th centuries, for example, M. Toppelius’ paintings in a church in Paltamo (1780). The wooden sculpture of the 15th to 17th centuries, including crucifixes and polyptychs, was marked by dynamic expressiveness.

The growing national awareness among the Finns, which influenced all aspects of Finnish culture, gave rise to the national artistic school of the 19th century. Architects and painters revived traditional arts and folk crafts, including wood carving and medieval monumental painting and architecture, and turned to historical and folk themes.

In the late 18th and early 19th centuries, Finnish architecture was influenced by Russian and Swedish classicism, for example, Senate Square in Helsinki (1820’s and 1830’s; architect C. Engel). The mid-19th century was dominated by eclecticism, a prominent example being the Athenaeum Art Gallery in Helsinki (1887; architect C. Höijer). A school of national romanticism was founded by H. Gesellius, A. Lindgren, E. Saarinen, and L. Sonck, all of whom deliberately borrowed decorative elements from medieval Finnish wood and stone architecture. The culmination of this style was the railroad station in Helsinki (1904–14; architect Eliel Saarinen).

Art nouveau, which evolved at the turn of the 20th century, is typified by the hotel in Imatra (1903; architect G. Nyström) and apartment houses in the Eira district in Helsinki (early 20th century). In his plans for Helsinki (1915–18), Saarinen developed the principle of decentralization, which has become typical of 20th-century city planning. In the 1920’s neoclassicism, represented by the Parliament building in Helsinki (1927–31; architect J. Sirén), was superseded by functionalism, which was formulated by A. Aalto in his design of the sanatorium in Paimio, near Turku (1929–33). Other functionalists included E. Bryggman, who designed the cemetery chapel in Turku (1938–40), A. Blomstedt, and E. Huttunen.

After World War II (1939–45), architects devoted their attention mainly to the construction of apartment houses and public buildings. Finnish architecture of the 1960’s stressed simplicity and severity of form, juxtaposed to the beauty of the landscape, for example, the satellite towns of Tapiola and Otaniemi near Helsinki; also significant was the use of modern construction designs. The works of Aalto, R. Pietilä, V. Revell, K. Siren, H. Siren, and A. Ervi are typical examples. Influenced by structuralism, architects designed compact residential complexes consisting of asymmetrical and geometrically precise groupings, such as the Kortepohja district in Jyväskylä (1968–69; architect B. Lundsten) and the Hakunila district in Helsinki (1970; architect Lundsten). Aalto designed several public buildings in Helsinki: the Säynätsalo civic center (1951–53), the House of Culture (1955–58), and Finlandia Hall (1971), all of which display masterful skill and brilliantly original yet rational composition.

In the fine arts, Finland maintained close contact with the major 19th-century European schools, especially those of Düsseldorf, Paris, and St. Petersburg. The forerunners of the national school of painting were the genre painter A. Lauréus, the portrait painter G. Finnberg, and R. Ekman, the “father of Finnish art,” who played an important role in the founding of the Finnish Society of Fine Arts (1846). The national school of landscape painting was established by W. Holmberg, whose techniques were subsequently fully developed by J. Munsterhjelm, B. Lind-holm, and V. Westerholm. A. von Becker and K. Jansson created moralizing and sentimental paintings that did not rise above the level of late academism, and the von Wright brothers painted naive, romantic, and idyllic landscapes.

Folk and democratic trends in Finnish culture were championed by a group of artists that emerged between 1880 and 1900. A. Edelfelt, E. Järnefelt, and P. Halonen painted colorful scenes from the people’s life that, because of their democratic inclinations, show an affinity with critical realism and the principles of the Russian peredvizhniki (the “wanderers,” a progressive art movement); many of their works were monumental and epic interpretations of folk themes. A. Gallen-Kallela, a major artist who worked during the period of flowering of the national school, dealt with the problems of democratic art by returning to the sources of national realism and drawing on themes from Finnish epic literature and folklore.

Finnish sculpture of the late 19th and early 20th centuries is represented by the works of the Swedish sculptor K. Sjöstrand, who spent many years in Finland, the classicist portraits and allegories of W. Runeberg, the small-scale terra-cotta statuettes of J. Takanen, and the monuments of E. Wikstróm. The works of V. Vallgren are marked by conventional stylization, while those of E. Halonen and H. Autere imitate medieval wooden sculpture. Finnish sculpture owes a great deal to F. Nylund, who founded the Union of Sculptors of Finland in 1910. The works of V. Aaltonen are marked by humanism and powerful plastic forms. Contemporary Finnish sculpture is mainly monumental and decorative and is used as an integral element of park and city ensembles, for example, the sculptures of R. Utriainen, L. Pullinen, and E. Hiltunen and the fountains of A. Tukiainen.

In the 20th century, Finnish painting has blended national traditions with various major international trends and styles. The neo-impressionism of the Septem group (founded 1912; headed by M. Enckell) and the expressionism of the November group (founded 1916; headed by T. Sallinen) were followed by surrealism, for example, the works of E. Tirronen, and abstract art, represented by the Prisma group (founded 1956) and the younger abstractionists B. Carlsedt, M. Faven, A. Lukander, and J. Linnavaara. While there is a great number of formalist groups and trends, realism remains strong in Finnish art. The realists continue to develop the traditions of the national school, for example, in scenes from the everyday life of the people by M. Collin and the laconic landscapes of R. Ekelund, A. Kanerva, and S. Grönvall. Progressive Finnish graphic artists, such as A. Aho, V. Askola, I. Colliander, I. Pietilä, and T. Tapiovaara, depict the life and work of the people and treat urban and rural motifs. Monumental decorative art, while retaining its social content, brilliantly synthesizes contemporary architectural forms with the laconic idiom of monumental painting; notable examples are the paintings of L. Segestrole, E. Koponen, and U. Pussi.

The traditional elements of peasant folk architecture were used until the early 20th century. The structures of the peasant farmsteads were freely grouped around an open yard. Two types of storehouse, the aitta and the luhti, which was of Swedish origin, were interesting for their variety of form. Finnish women folk artists were famous for decorative weaving. Peasant homes were decorated with woven blankets, bedspreads, curtains over double-tiered beds, and wall rugs, which were checked (raanu), ornamented (täkänä), or napped (ryijy). Copper and iron articles were also made, including cauldrons, coffeepots, and candlesticks.

Members of contemporary folk artists’ associations and professional craftsmen make wide use of the heritage of Finnish peasant culture. Finnish modern design is based on the traditions developed in the early 20th century by the pioneers of this field, A. Gallen-Kallela, A. Finch, and E. Saarinen. Finnish furniture and hand-crafted articles are marked by comfort, harmony and clarity of design, and the use of the natural properties and forms of the materials. Outstanding examples include the tableware of T. Wirkkala and K. Franck, the fabrics of R. Bryk and D. Jung, and the furniture of A. Aalto, E. Aarnio, and I. Tapiovaara.


Vystavka finskogo izobrazitel’nogo iskusstva. (Catalog.) Moscow, 1953.
Ikonnikov, A. V. Novaia arkhitektura Finliandii. [Moscow, 1972.]
Okkonen, O. Suomen taileen historia, parts 1–2. Porvoo-Helsinki [1945]..
Salorkorpi, A. Modern Architecture in Finland. London, 1970.
Nordman, C. A. Medeltida skulpturi Finland. Helsinki, 1964.
Valkonen, O. Maalaustaiteen murros suomessa, 1908–1914. Yyväskyla, 1973.

Folk music traditions form the foundation of Finnish music. The oldest folk songs were the runes. The joiku, a short, free recitative improvisation with many pitch variations and numerous refrains, emerged in the 12th century. Represented in shepherds’ melodies, laments, and incantations, it is still heard in contemporary folk music. Other folk songs of the 12th century are the oodi, recitative, and melodic laments. Songs that have come down to the present include humorous songs, work songs, and songs accompanying rituals, games, and dances. Other folk melodies are based on the pentatonic scale, which corresponds to the tuning of the ancient five-string kantele. Later songs include lyrical folk songs that are notable for their melodic and rhythmic variety and reflect the influence of classical music.

Folk instruments include the kantele, which has as many as 36 strings, and the jouhikko, a bowed instrument that also appears in a version with two strings—the jouhi-kantele. The tuohitorvi, a wind instrument, is a kind of shepherd’s horn made of birch bark. The clarinet and the violin became popular in the 19th century, and the accordion, in the early 20th century.

Interest in folk music developed in the second half of the 18th century. A village doctor, E. Lönnrot, notated Karelian runes and published the Kalevala (1835 and 1849) and the Kanteletar (1840), an anthology of lyrical folk songs. Other researchers of folk music in the 19th century included K. Collan, J. F. von Schantz, and I. Krohn. In 1893, Krohn, together with his students A. Launis and A. O. Väisänen, published a collection of 15,000 Finnish folk melodies.

Professional music emerged in the Middle Ages, when church singing and organ playing were introduced into Finland. The Gregorian chant became a major source of inspiration for Finnish national music, second in importance only to folk music. There are manuscripts extant of hymns dating from the 12th to 16th centuries. Vocal instruction was introduced into the curriculum of medieval Finnish schools. Students at the university in Turku sang in church choirs. In the 16th century, the piae cantiones—special collections of religious songs set to Latin texts—were published. Although some songs brought to Finland by Finnish students who had studied elsewhere in Western Europe, mainly in Germany and Sweden, reflect foreign influences, religious songs composed in Finland also exist. As the ideas of the Reformation spread throughout Finland, the Protestant chorale was developed and religious folk melodies appeared. Medieval church frescoes depicting musical instruments show that instrumental music existed in Finland even at that time. In the mid-16th century, an instrumental ensemble was attached to the court at Turku, and professional musicians performed in the city in the 17th century.

Musical culture developed intensively in the late 18th century, when Turku became a major cultural center; musical societies were formed, public concerts were given, and traditions of male choral singing were established. The first Finnish composers, E. Tulindberg and B. H. Crussel (the latter lived in Sweden), flourished at the turn of the 19th century. In 1852, F. Pacius, a German by descent, composed the first Finnish opera, King Charles’ Hunt. He also wrote the national anthem, which he set to a patriotic text by the Finnish poet J. Runeberg, and two other operas, The Princess of Cyprus and Lorelei. The first operatic performances were benefit performances staged by amateurs. Between 1873 and 1879, the first opera company was part of the Finnish National Theater, managed by K. Bergbom.

The first Finnish symphony was composed in 1847 by A. G. Ingelius. Schantz was the first to use the national motifs of the Kalevala, in the programmatic symphonic overture Kullervo (1860). M. Wegelius and R. Kajanus made a valuable contribution to the development of Finnish music at the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th. The founders of the national school of composition, they were at the same time adherents of German romantic music. In 1882, Wegelius, a composer, chorus master, and teacher, founded the first music school in Finland, the Institute of Music (since 1939, the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki). Kajanus, a proponent of national folk music and the founder of Finland’s first professional symphony orchestra, made wide use of folk melodies and drew on themes from Finnish national folklore in programmatic works. Both composers played an important role in the development of musical culture, performing the latest Finnish and foreign works at their concerts.

Young Finnish musicians, led by J. Sibelius, gathered around Wegelius and Kajanus. Sibelius, whose works most fully embody the distinctive traits of Finnish music, reworked national traditions and drew on the best in Western European music of the late 19th century and on the Russian classics. He raised Finnish music to a level equal to that of the greatest Western European musical art of his time. His symphonies and symphonic poems, including The Swan of Tuonela (1893; based on a Finnish legend), and other orchestral works, as well as his violin concerto, all suffused with a brilliant national color, achieved international recognition. The works of Sibelius were crucial to the subsequent development of the Finnish school of composition. Imbued with patriotic ardor, they made use of folk poetry and music and were notable for their colorful character and exalted romanticism.

Following the example of Sibelius, the composers O. Merikanto, A. Järnefelt, E. Melartin, S. Palmgren, and T. Kuula used the songs of the Kalevala and folklore of the northwestern coastal regions. L. Madetoja drew on this material in the Finnish national opera Pohjalaisia (1923) and in three symphonies, as did I. Kilpinen in romantic songs.

In the 1920’s and 1930’s, Finnish music reflected two influences. Elements of late romanticism, such as colorful orchestration, were evident in U. Klami’s suite Scenes From the Kalevala (1932). Other composers turned to atonal music, as did Merikanto, in his opera Juha (1922; staged 1958). After 1945, many Finnish composers sought to combine various avant-garde techniques with means of individual expression while remaining within the boundaries of a national art.

E. Englund’s works, characterized by expressiveness and dynamism, include four symphonies, concerti, and ballets; his Fourth Symphony (1976) is dedicated to D. D. Shostakovich. E. Bergman combines colorful orchestration with serial technique in such works as the orchestral piece Morning Serenade (1958), the choral composition Svanhild (1958), and The Night, written for solo voice, chorus, winds, and percussion (1970). J. Kokkonen, a noted professor at the Sibelius Academy and a member of the Finnish Academy of Sciences, synthesizes folkloric material, classical traditions, and serial technique, working within a tonal framework. He is the composer of four symphonies and the opera The Last Temptations (1975). E. Rautavaara is the composer of A Requiem in Our Time, for winds and percussion (1954), and the opera The Mine (1963). Other contemporary composers include A. Sallinen (the opera The Horseman, 1974; orchestral and other compositions), A. Sonninen (the ballet Pessi and Illusia), U. Meriläinen, and P. Heininen.

Composers of the 1970’s include E. Salmenhaara, H. O. Donner, L. Linjama, I. Kuusisto, R. Jyrkiäinen, P. H. Nordgren, L. Segerstam, and K. Chydenius. In addition to writing in traditional genres, such as opera, ballet, the principal instumental forms, choral music, and music for the theater, radio, and television, contemporary composers have turned to jazz and electronic music, musicals, and political songs.

The principal musical center of Finland is Helsinki, which is the home of the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Sibelius Academy, the People’s Conservatory, and the Finnish National Opera (founded 1911; acquired present name in 1956). Other musical institutions and groups in Helsinki include a municipal symphony, chamber orchestras and ensembles, and choral groups. Chairs of musicology are located at the universities of Helsinki and Turku and at the Swedish University of Åbo. The Society of Finnish Composers was founded in 1945 and the Finnish Union of Musicians in 1917. There are municipal symphony orchestras, opera companies, choirs, and music schools in Turku, Tampere and other cities, and there are music institutes in Lahti, Tampere, Jyväskylä, and Kuopio. Amateur choral groups, directed by the Union of Musical Performers and the Finnish Workers’ Musical Union, have been formed throughout the country.

Prominent musical figures include the conductors G. Schneevoigt, A. Järnefelt, T. Hannikainen, J. Jalas, M. Similä, T. Haapanen, N. E. Fougstedt, J. Panula, P. Berglund, and L. Segerstam. Also notable are the choral conductors H. Klemetti, E. Pohjola, E. Bergman, and H. Andersén. Famous instrumentalists include the pianists K. Ekman, E. Linko, I. Hannikainen, and E. Tawaststjerna, the violinist A. Ignatius; and the cellists O. Fohström, E. Valsta, and A. Noras. Female singers of note include A. Fohström, I. Ekman, A. Ackte, H. Granfelt, M. Järnefelt, and A. Rautawaara, and male singers include H. Lindberg, K. Borg, V. Tyrväinen, M. Lehtinen, and M. Talvela. The Sibelius Week festival has been held annually in Finland since 1951; Finland is also the site of other festivals and competitions devoted to music and song.


Lipaev, I. Finskaia muzyka. [St. Petersburg] 1906.
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Composers of Finland. Edited by T. Karila. Borgå, 1961.

Professional ballet in Finland evolved in the 1920’s under the influence of the Russian ballet. The first choreographer of the Finnish National Opera in Helsinki was G. Gé, who staged Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake in 1922; later he staged other ballets of the Russian repertoire, including several by M. M. Fokine. The first Finnish dancers, including S. Will, A. Saxelin, and M. Paischeff, were trained in Petrograd.

The dance company of the Finnish National Opera was directed by Gé until 1935 and from 1954 to 1962 and by Saxelin from 1935 to 1954. The repertoire includes classical works, such as A. Adam’s Giselle and Tchaikovsky’s ballets, as well as productions by Western European choreographers, including N. Beriozoff, B. Cullberg, S. Lifar, and A. Carter, and by Soviet choreographers, including R. V. Zakharov and L. M. Lavrovskii. In 1935, Saxelin staged the first Finnish ballet, J. Sibelius’ Scaramouche; he also staged The Saga (1938) and Swan of Tuonela (1947), both to the music of Sibelius. I. Koskinen staged A. Sonninen’s Pessi and Illusia (1952) and A. Melartin’s The Blue Pearl (1957).

Leading dancers of the 1930’s and 1940’s included L. Nifontova, A. Martikainen, I. Koskinen, M. von Bahr, and K. Kornakoski. Leading dancers from the 1950’s to the 1970’s have included D. Laine, M.-L. Rajala, L. Taxell, E. Silvesterson, K. Salin, and L. Ahonen. A. Carter has directed the company since 1971.

The traditional folk theater gave rise to the Finnish professional theater, whose development was impeded for centuries by Swedish rule, which lasted until 1809, and by the lack of Finnish-language dramaturgy—Finnish was recognized as a stage language only in 1863. Finland’s first theater building, the Theater House, was built in Helsinki in 1827, and performances were given there by visiting Russian, German, and Swedish troupes and occasionally by Finnish amateur circles playing in Swedish. The first professional theater in Finland, consisting of Swedish actors, began performing in Helsinki in 1860. In 1916 a troupe composed of Swedish residents of Finland was formed, which later became the National Swedish Theater in Helsinki.

In 1869 a Finnish amateur circle directed by the philologist, critic, and playwright K. Bergbom staged the one-act work Leah, a play on a biblical subject by A. Kivi, the founder of Finnish dramaturgy. The production was a great success and promoted the development of a Finnish-language professional theater. A Finnish theater opened in Helsinki in 1872 and had Bergbom as its director from 1872 to 1904. The leading actors were I. Aalberg, A. Lindfors, and A. Ahlberg. The theater maintained both drama and opera companies until 1879, when the opera company became separate. In 1902 the drama company was given its own building and was named the Finnish National Theater.

The founding of a Finnish resident theater promoted the development of Finnish dramaturgy and the translation of plays into Finnish. Realism was the dominant trend, and the plays of M. Canth were especially influential. Canth belonged to the Young Finns, a movement organized in the 1880’s to promote social reforms and awaken Finnish national awareness. Her plays The Laborer’s Wife (1885, Finnish Theater) and Children of a Cruel Lot (1888), which portrayed workers denied their rights and driven to extreme poverty by exploitation, were the first Finnish dramatic works about the struggle of the proletariat for freedom and equality.

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, elements of symbolism and other decadent currents penetrated Finnish dramaturgy. Realist traditions remained in M. Lassila’s works. His plays The Young Miller (1912) and The Wise Maiden (about 1912–15) and the dramatizations of his novellas Matchsticks (1910) and Resurrected (1915) truthfully depicted contradictions in Finnish life in the early 20th century. H. Wuolijoki’s topical plays The Minister and the Communist (1932) and Law and Order (1933) and his cycle of plays about the farmstead of Niskavuori reflected the life of various strata of Finnish society. The plays of the cycle The Women of NiskavuoriThe Stone Nest, (1936), The Bread of Niskavuori (1940), and What Now, Niskavuori? (1953)—were staged in many of the country’s theaters. The play The World Is Still Young (1953, Workers’ Theater, Helsinki) by the progressive contemporary playwright E. Sinervo links the theme of the new man with that of the struggle for peace. While realism on the whole dominates the contemporary Finnish theater, modernist trends are also pronounced, as in some plays of K. A. Kivimaa and M. Waltari and especially those of W. Chorell.

Finland has municipal, workers’, and Swedish-language theaters. The workers’ and Swedish theaters are directed by the Central Union of Finnish Theatrical Organizations and the Central Union of Swedish Theatrical Organizations in Finland. The numerous amateur troupes are supervised by the Central Union of Amateur Theaters and the Workers’ Theater Association. Actors for the professional theaters are trained at theatrical schools, higher theatrical educational institutions, and amateur groups. Of the 34 professional theaters that are partially subsidized by the state, most are maintained by societies of patrons of the arts, workers’ organizations, and commercial firms. About ten theaters were created by and are maintained by municipalities.

The major theaters include the Finnish National Theater, the National Swedish Theater, the Workers’ Theater, the Théâtre Intime, and the Green Apple, all of which are located in Helsinki. Other important theaters are the workers’ theater in Tampere and the theaters in Lahti, Turku, and Kuopio. Classical Western European plays are staged, as are works by Finnish, Russian, and Soviet dramatists.

The Finnish National Theater has two stages, one of which is used for experimental productions. E. Kalima, an adherent of K. S. Stanislavsky’s method, was the theater’s artistic and stage director from 1917 to 1950, and A. Kivimaa held this post from 1950 to 1974. Stage directors include J. Witikka, who did much work on the experimental stage, and W. Ilmari. The actors of the National Theater have included E.-K. Volanen, E. Eronen, T. Palo, J. Rinne, and A. Korhonen.

The Workers’ Theater was organized in about 1914 by the dramatist M. Jotuni; it toured the USSR in 1965.

Finnish actors, in addition to those mentioned above, include A. Lindfors, A. Leppänen, A. Slangus, R. Snellman, U. Somersalmi, and E. Jurkka.


Koskimies, R. Suomen kansallisteatteri, 1902–1917. Helsinki, 1953.
Suomen kansallisteatteri. Edited by R. Heikkilä. Porvoo, 1962.
Finnish Theatre Today. Helsinki, 1971.

The first Finnish newsreels were filmed in 1904. The studio Atelier Apollo was established in 1906. The short feature film The Moonshiners, directed by L. Sparre and T. Puro, was released in 1907; it starred actors of the Finnish National Theater, including T. Puro, who became one of the best-known actors of Finnish silent films. The first full-length feature film, Sylvi, was released in 1913; based on a play by M. Canth, it was directed by Puro. A new film studio was founded in 1919. Film versions of works of Finnish literature were made in the 1920’s, including Anna Liisa (based on a comedy by Canth; 1922, directed by Puro and J. Snellman), The Old Baron From Rautakylä (based on a short story by Z. Topelius; 1923, directed by Fager), and The Nummi Shoemakers (based on a comedy by A. Kivi; 1923, directed by E. Karu). New studios, including Komedia Filmi, Fennica Filmi; and Suomi Filmi, were founded in the 1920’s.

Motion-picture production expanded in the 1930’s. In 1933, E. Karu founded Finland’s major motion-picture studio, Suomen Filmiteollisuus. The best films of the 1930’s and early 1940’s included Juha (1937) and The Way of Man (1940), both directed by N. Tapiovaara. Several films of the 1950’s won international recognition, including The White Reindeer (1953, directed by E. Blomberg), Hilja, the Milkmaid (1953, directed by T. Särkkä), The Unknown Soldier (based on a novel by V. Linna; 1955, directed by E. Laine), Joseph of Ryysyranta (1955, directed by R. af Hällström; shown in the USSR as The Dry Law), and The Red Line (1959, directed by M. Kassila).

In the 1960’s and the early 1970’s young film directors made films stressing social criticism. Notable examples include R. Jarva’s A Workers’ Diary (1967) and Rally (also known as Gas in the Veins, 1970), M. Kurkvara’s The Rat War (1968), M. Niskanen’s Eight Deadly Shots (1972), and E. Kivikoski’s The Indomitable Brothers (1969; shown in the USSR as The Brothers) and Gunshot in the Factory (1973). E. Laine adapted several literary works to the screen, including V. Linna’s Here, Under the North Star (1968) and Akseli and Elina (1970).

The Union of Motion Picture Workers was founded in 1952. Articles on motion pictures have been published in the journal Kinolehti since 1931. The joint Soviet-Finnish film Trust was made in 1976. Four to eight feature films are released every year in Finland. There were 308 motion picture theaters in 1973.


Uusitalo, K. Suomalaisen elokuvan vuosikymment. Helsinki, 1965.
Uusitalo, K. Eläviksi syntyneet kuvat. Helsinki, 1972.
Uusitalo, K. Lavean tien sankarit: Suomalainen elokuva, 1931–1939. Helsinki, 1975.
Toiviainen, S. Uusi suomalainen elokuva. Helsinki, 1975.
Cinema in Finland. London, 1975.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


Official name: Republic of Finland

Capital city: Helsinki

Internet country code: .fi

Flag description: White with a blue cross extending to the edges of the flag; the vertical part of the cross is shifted to the hoist side in the style of the Dannebrog (Danish flag)

National anthem: “Maamme” (translated from the Swedish “Vårt land” [Our Land]), lyrics by Johan Ludvig Runeberg, music by Fredrik Pacius

National animal: Brown bear (Ursus arctos)

National bird: Whooper swan (Cygnus Cygnus)

National fish: Perch (Perca fluviatilis)

National flower: Lily-of-the-valley (Convallaria majalis)

National rock: Granite

National tree: Birch (Betula pendula)

Geographical description: Northern Europe, bordering the

Baltic Sea, Gulf of Bothnia, and Gulf of Finland, between Sweden and Russia

Total area: 130,558 sq. mi. (338,144 sq. km.)

Climate: Cold temperate; potentially subarctic but compar­atively mild because of moderating influence of the North Atlantic Current, Baltic Sea, and more than 60,000 lakes

Nationality: noun: Finn(s); adjective: Finnish

Population: 5,238,460 (July 2007 CIA est.)

Ethnic groups: Finn 93.4%, Swede 5.7%, Russian 0.4%, Estonian 0.2%, Roma 0.2%, Sami 0.1%

Languages spoken: Finnish (official) 92%, Swedish (offi­cial) 5.6%, other (including Sami and Russian) 2.4%

Religions: Lutheran Church of Finland 84.2%, Orthodox Church 1.1%, other Christian 1.1%, other 0.1%, none 13.5%

Legal Holidays:

All Saints' DayNov 5, 2011; Nov 3, 2012; Nov 2, 2013; Nov 1, 2014; Nov 7, 2015; Nov 5, 2016; Nov 4, 2017; Nov 3, 2018; Nov 2, 2019; Nov 7, 2020; Nov 6, 2021; Nov 5, 2022; Nov 4, 2023
Boxing DayDec 26
Christmas DayDec 25
Christmas EveDec 24
EasterApr 24, 2011; Apr 8, 2012; Mar 31, 2013; Apr 20, 2014; Apr 5, 2015; Mar 27, 2016; Apr 16, 2017; Apr 1, 2018; Apr 21, 2019; Apr 12, 2020; Apr 4, 2021; Apr 17, 2022; Apr 9, 2023
Easter MondayApr 25, 2011; Apr 9, 2012; Apr 1, 2013; Apr 21, 2014; Apr 6, 2015; Mar 28, 2016; Apr 17, 2017; Apr 2, 2018; Apr 22, 2019; Apr 13, 2020; Apr 5, 2021; Apr 18, 2022; Apr 10, 2023
EpiphanyJan 6
Good FridayApr 22, 2011; Apr 6, 2012; Mar 29, 2013; Apr 18, 2014; Apr 3, 2015; Mar 25, 2016; Apr 14, 2017; Mar 30, 2018; Apr 19, 2019; Apr 10, 2020; Apr 2, 2021; Apr 15, 2022; Apr 7, 2023
Independence DayDec 6
May DayMay 1
New Year's DayJan 1
Holidays, Festivals, and Celebrations of the World Dictionary, Fourth Edition. © 2010 by Omnigraphics, Inc.


1. a republic in N Europe, on the Baltic Sea: ceded to Russia by Sweden in 1809; gained independence in 1917; Soviet invasion successfully withstood in 1939--40, with the loss of Karelia; a member of the European Union. It is generally low-lying, with about 50 000 lakes, extensive forests, and peat bogs. Official languages: Finnish and Swedish. Religion: Christian, Lutheran majority. Currency: euro. Capital: Helsinki. Pop.: 5 216 000 (2004 est.). Area: 337 000 sq. km (130 120 sq. miles)
2. Gulf of. an arm of the Baltic Sea between Finland, Estonia, and Russia
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
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