A patron saint, patroness saint, patron hallow or heavenly protector is a saint who in Roman Catholicism, Anglicanism or Eastern Orthodoxy, is regarded as the heavenly advocate of a nation, craft, class, family or person. Saints become the patrons of places where they were born or had been active. However, there were cases in Medieval Europe where a city which grew to prominence and obtained for its cathedral the remains or some relics of a famous saint who had lived and was buried elsewhere, thus making him or her the city's patron saint – such a practice conferred considerable prestige on the city concerned. In Latin America and the Philippines and Portuguese explorers named a location for the saint on whose feast or commemoration they first visited the place, with that saint becoming the area's patron. Professions sometimes have a patron saint owing to that individual being involved somewhat with it, although some of the connections were tenuous. Lacking such a saint, an occupation would have a patron whose acts or miracles in some way recall the profession.
For example, when the unknown profession of photography appeared in the 19th century, Saint Veronica was made its patron, owing to how her veil miraculously received the imprint of Christ's face after she wiped off the blood and sweat. The veneration or "commemoration" and recognition of patron saints or saints in general is found in Roman Catholicism, Eastern Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, Oriental Orthodoxy, among some Lutherans and Anglicans. Catholics believe that patron saints, having transcended to the metaphysical, are able to intercede for the needs of their special charges, it is, however discouraged in most Protestant branches such as Calvinism, where the practice is considered a form of idolatry. Although Islam has no codified doctrine of patronage on the part of saints, it has been an important part of both Sunni and Shia Islamic tradition that important classical saints have served as the heavenly advocates for specific Muslim empires, cities and villages. Martin Lings wrote: "There is scarcely a region in the empire of Islam which has not a Sufi for its Patron Saint."
As the veneration accorded saints develops purely organically in Islamic climates, in a manner different to Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Christianity, "patron saints" are recognized through popular acclaim rather than through official declaration. Traditionally, it has been understood that the patron saint of a particular place prays for that place's wellbeing and for the health and happiness of all who live therein. However, the Wahhabi and Salafi movements within Sunnism have latterly attacked the veneration of saints, which they claim are a form of idolatry or shirk. More mainstream Sunni clerics have critiqued this argument since Wahhabism first emerged in the 18th century; the critiques notwithstanding, widespread veneration of saints in the Sunni world declined in the 20th century under Wahhabi and Salafi influence. Calendar of saints Guardian angel List of blesseds List of saints Patron saints of ailments and dangers Patron saints of occupations and activities Patron saints of places Patron saints of ethnic groups Saint symbolism Catholic Online: Patron Saints Henry Parkinson.
"Patron Saints". In Herbermann, Charles. Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. "Patron Saint". Encyclopedia Americana. 1920
Coat of arms
A coat of arms is a heraldic visual design on an escutcheon, surcoat, or tabard. The coat of arms on an escutcheon forms the central element of the full heraldic achievement which in its whole consists of shield, supporters and motto. A coat of arms is traditionally unique to an individual person, state, organization or corporation; the Roll of Arms is a collection of many coats of arms, since the early Modern Age centuries it has been a source of information for public showing and tracing the membership of a noble family, therefore its genealogy across time. The ancient Greek hoplites used individual insignia on their shields; the ancient Romans used similar insignia on their shields. Heraldic designs came into general use among western nobility in the 12th century. Systematic, heritable heraldry had developed by the beginning of the 13th century. Who had a right to use arms, by law or social convention, varied to some degree between countries. Early heraldic designs were personal. Arms become hereditary by the end of the 12th century, in England by King Richard I during the Third Crusade.
Burgher arms are used in Northern Italy in the second half of the 13th century, in the Holy Roman Empire by the mid 14th century. In the late medieval period, use of arms spread to the clergy, to towns as civic identifiers, to royally chartered organizations such as universities and trading companies; the arts of vexillology and heraldry are related. The term coat of arms itself in origin refers to the surcoat with heraldic designs worn by combattants in the knightly tournament, in Old French cote a armer; the sense is transferred to the heraldic design itself in the mid-14th century. Despite no widespread regulation, heraldry has remained consistent across Europe, where tradition alone has governed the design and use of arms; some nations, like England and Scotland, still maintain the same heraldic authorities which have traditionally granted and regulated arms for centuries and continue to do so in the present day. In England, for example, the granting of arms has been controlled by the College of Arms.
Unlike seals and other general emblems, heraldic "achievements" have a formal description called a blazon, which uses vocabulary that allows for consistency in heraldic depictions. In the present day, coats of arms are still in use by a variety of institutions and individuals: for example, many European cities and universities have guidelines on how their coats of arms may be used, protect their use as trademarks. Many societies exist that aid in the design and registration of personal arms. Heraldry has been compared to modern corporate logos; the French system of heraldry influenced the British and Western European systems. Much of the terminology and classifications are taken from it. However, with the fall of the French monarchy there is not a Fons Honorum to enforce heraldic law; the French Republics that followed have either affirmed pre-existing titles and honors or vigorously opposed noble privilege. Coats of arms are considered an intellectual property of municipal body. Assumed arms are considered valid unless they can be proved in court to copy that of an earlier holder.
In the heraldic traditions of England and Scotland, an individual, rather than a family, had a coat of arms. In those traditions coats of arms are legal property transmitted from father to son. Undifferenced arms are used only by one person at any given time. Other descendants of the original bearer could bear the ancestral arms only with some difference: a colour change or the addition of a distinguishing charge. One such charge is the label, which in British usage is now always the mark of an heir apparent or an heir presumptive; because of their importance in identification in seals on legal documents, the use of arms was regulated. This has been carried out by heralds and the study of coats of arms is therefore called "heraldry". In time, the use of arms spread from military entities to educational institutes, other establishments. In Scotland, the Lord Lyon King of Arms has criminal jurisdiction to control the use of arms. In England, Northern Ireland and Wales the use of arms is a matter of civil law and regulated by the College of Arms and the High Court of Chivalry.
In reference to a dispute over the exercise of authority over the Officers of Arms in England, Arthur Annesley, 1st Earl of Anglesey, Lord Privy Seal, declared on 16 June 1673 that the powers of the Earl Marshal were "to order and determine all matters touching arms, ensigns of nobility and chivalry. It was further declared that no patents of arms or any ensigns of nobility should be granted and no augmentation, alteration, or addition should be made to arms without the consent of the Earl Marshal. In Ireland the usage and granting of coats of arms was regulated by the Ulster King of Arms from the office's creation in 1552. After Irish independence in 1922 the office was still working out of Dublin Castle; the last Ulster King of Arm
Sweden the Kingdom of Sweden, is a Scandinavian Nordic country in Northern Europe. It borders Norway to the west and north and Finland to the east, is connected to Denmark in the southwest by a bridge-tunnel across the Öresund, a strait at the Swedish-Danish border. At 450,295 square kilometres, Sweden is the largest country in Northern Europe, the third-largest country in the European Union and the fifth largest country in Europe by area. Sweden has a total population of 10.2 million. It has a low population density of 22 inhabitants per square kilometre; the highest concentration is in the southern half of the country. Germanic peoples have inhabited Sweden since prehistoric times, emerging into history as the Geats and Swedes and constituting the sea peoples known as the Norsemen. Southern Sweden is predominantly agricultural, while the north is forested. Sweden is part of the geographical area of Fennoscandia; the climate is in general mild for its northerly latitude due to significant maritime influence, that in spite of this still retains warm continental summers.
Today, the sovereign state of Sweden is a constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, with a monarch as head of state, like its neighbour Norway. The capital city is Stockholm, the most populous city in the country. Legislative power is vested in the 349-member unicameral Riksdag. Executive power is exercised by the government chaired by the prime minister. Sweden is a unitary state divided into 21 counties and 290 municipalities. An independent Swedish state emerged during the early 12th century. After the Black Death in the middle of the 14th century killed about a third of the Scandinavian population, the Hanseatic League threatened Scandinavia's culture and languages; this led to the forming of the Scandinavian Kalmar Union in 1397, which Sweden left in 1523. When Sweden became involved in the Thirty Years War on the Reformist side, an expansion of its territories began and the Swedish Empire was formed; this became one of the great powers of Europe until the early 18th century. Swedish territories outside the Scandinavian Peninsula were lost during the 18th and 19th centuries, ending with the annexation of present-day Finland by Russia in 1809.
The last war in which Sweden was directly involved was in 1814, when Norway was militarily forced into personal union. Since Sweden has been at peace, maintaining an official policy of neutrality in foreign affairs; the union with Norway was peacefully dissolved in 1905. Sweden was formally neutral through both world wars and the Cold War, albeit Sweden has since 2009 moved towards cooperation with NATO. After the end of the Cold War, Sweden joined the European Union on 1 January 1995, but declined NATO membership, as well as Eurozone membership following a referendum, it is a member of the United Nations, the Nordic Council, the Council of Europe, the World Trade Organization and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. Sweden maintains a Nordic social welfare system that provides universal health care and tertiary education for its citizens, it has the world's eleventh-highest per capita income and ranks in numerous metrics of national performance, including quality of life, education, protection of civil liberties, economic competitiveness, equality and human development.
The name Sweden was loaned from Dutch in the 17th century to refer to Sweden as an emerging great power. Before Sweden's imperial expansion, Early Modern English used Swedeland. Sweden is derived through back-formation from Old English Swēoþēod, which meant "people of the Swedes"; this word is derived from Sweon/Sweonas. The Swedish name Sverige means "realm of the Swedes", excluding the Geats in Götaland. Variations of the name Sweden are used in most languages, with the exception of Danish and Norwegian using Sverige, Faroese Svøríki, Icelandic Svíþjóð, the more notable exception of some Finnic languages where Ruotsi and Rootsi are used, names considered as referring to the people from the coastal areas of Roslagen, who were known as the Rus', through them etymologically related to the English name for Russia; the etymology of Swedes, thus Sweden, is not agreed upon but may derive from Proto-Germanic Swihoniz meaning "one's own", referring to one's own Germanic tribe. Sweden's prehistory begins in the Allerød oscillation, a warm period around 12,000 BC, with Late Palaeolithic reindeer-hunting camps of the Bromme culture at the edge of the ice in what is now the country's southernmost province, Scania.
This period was characterised by small bands of hunter-gatherer-fishers using flint technology. Sweden is first described in a written source in Germania by Tacitus in 98 AD. In Germania 44 and 45 he mentions the Swedes as a powerful tribe with ships that had a prow at each end. Which kings ruled these Suiones is unknown, but Norse mythology presents a long line of legendary and semi-legendary kings going back to the last centuries BC; as for literacy in Sweden itself, the runic script was in use among the south Scandinavian elite by at least the 2nd century AD, but all that has come down to the present from the Roman Period is curt inscriptions on artefacts of male names, demonstrating th
Heraldry is a broad term, encompassing the design and study of armorial bearings, as well as related disciplines, such as vexillology, together with the study of ceremony and pedigree. Armory, the best-known branch of heraldry, concerns the design and transmission of the heraldic achievement; the achievement, or armorial bearings includes a coat of arms on an shield and crest, together with any accompanying devices, such as supporters, heraldic banners, mottoes. Although the use of various devices to signify individuals and groups goes back to antiquity, both the form and use of such devices varied and the concept of regular, hereditary designs, constituting the distinguishing feature of heraldry, did not develop until the High Middle Ages, it is often that the use of helmets with face guards during this period made it difficult to recognize one's commanders in the field when large armies gathered together for extended periods, necessitating the development of heraldry as a symbolic language but there is little actual support for this view.
The beauty and pageantry of heraldic designs allowed them to survive the gradual abandonment of armour on the battlefield during the seventeenth century. Heraldry has been described poetically as "the handmaid of history", "the shorthand of history", "the floral border in the garden of history". In modern times, individuals and private organizations, cities and regions use heraldry and its conventions to symbolize their heritage and aspirations. Various symbols have been used to represent groups for thousands of years; the earliest representations of distinct persons and regions in Egyptian art show the use of standards topped with the images or symbols of various gods, the names of kings appear upon emblems known as serekhs, representing the king's palace, topped with a falcon representing the god Horus, of whom the king was regarded as the earthly incarnation. Similar emblems and devices are found in ancient Mesopotamian art of the same period, the precursors of heraldic beasts such as the griffin can be found.
In the Bible, the Book of Numbers refers to the standards and ensigns of the children of Israel, who were commanded to gather beneath these emblems and declare their pedigrees. The Greek and Latin writers describe the shields and symbols of various heroes, units of the Roman army were sometimes identified by distinctive markings on their shields; until the nineteenth century, it was common for heraldic writers to cite examples such as these, metaphorical symbols such as the "Lion of Judah" or "Eagle of the Caesars" as evidence of the antiquity of heraldry itself. The Book of Saint Albans, compiled in 1486, declares that Christ himself was a gentleman of coat armour, but these fabulous claims have long since been dismissed as the fantasy of medieval heralds, for there is no evidence of a distinctive symbolic language akin to that of heraldry during this early period. The medieval heralds devised arms for various knights and lords from history and literature. Notable examples include the toads attributed to Pharamond, the cross and martlets of Edward the Confessor, the various arms attributed to the Nine Worthies and the Knights of the Round Table.
These too are now regarded as a fanciful invention, rather than evidence of the antiquity of heraldry. The development of the modern heraldic language cannot be attributed to a single individual, time, or place. Although certain designs that are now considered heraldic were evidently in use during the eleventh century, most accounts and depictions of shields up to the beginning of the twelfth century contain little or no evidence of their heraldic character. For example, the Bayeux Tapestry, illustrating the Norman invasion of England in 1066, commissioned about 1077, when the cathedral of Bayeux was rebuilt, depicts a number of shields of various shapes and designs, many of which are plain, while others are decorated with dragons, crosses, or other heraldic figures, yet no individual is depicted twice bearing the same arms, nor are any of the descendants of the various persons depicted known to have borne devices resembling those in the tapestry. An account of the French knights at the court of the Byzantine emperor Alexius I at the beginning of the twelfth century describes their shields of polished metal, utterly devoid of heraldic design.
A Spanish manuscript from 1109 describes both plain and decorated shields, none of which appears to have been heraldic. The Abbey of St. Denis contained a window commemorating the knights who embarked on the Second Crusade in 1147, was made soon after the event. In England, from the time of the Norman conquest, official documents had to be sealed. Beginning in the twelfth century, seals assumed a distinctly heraldic character. A notable example of an early armorial seal is attached to a charter granted by Philip I, Count of Flanders, in 1164. Seals from the latter part of the eleventh and early twelfth centuries show no evidence of heraldic symbolism, but by t
A seal is a device for making an impression in wax, paper, or some other medium, including an embossment on paper, is the impression thus made. The original purpose was to authenticate a document, a wrapper for one such as a modern envelope, or the cover of a container or package holding valuables or other objects; the seal-making device is referred to as the seal matrix or die. If the impression is made purely as a relief resulting from the greater pressure on the paper where the high parts of the matrix touch, the seal is known as a dry seal. In most traditional forms of dry seal the design on the seal matrix is in intaglio and therefore the design on the impressions made is in relief; the design on the impression will reverse that of the matrix, important when script is included in the design, as it often is. This will not be the case if paper is embossed from behind, where the matrix and impression read the same way, both matrix and impression are in relief; however engraved gems were carved in relief, called cameo in this context, giving a "counter-relief" or intaglio impression when used as seals.
The process is that of a mould. Most seals have always given a single impression on an flat surface, but in medieval Europe two-sided seals with two matrices were used by institutions or rulers to make two-sided or three-dimensional impressions in wax, with a "tag", a piece of ribbon or strip of parchment, running through them; these "pendent" seal impressions dangled below the documents they authenticated, to which the attachment tag was sewn or otherwise attached. Some jurisdictions consider rubber stamps or specified signature-accompanying words such as "seal" or "L. S." to be the legal equivalent of, i.e. an effective substitute for, a seal. In the United States, the word "seal" is sometimes assigned to a facsimile of the seal design, which may be used in a variety of contexts including architectural settings, on flags, or on official letterheads. Thus, for example, the Great Seal of the United States, among other uses, appears on the reverse of the one-dollar bill. S. states appear on their respective state flags.
In Europe, although coats of arms and heraldic badges may well feature in such contexts as well as on seals, the seal design in its entirety appears as a graphical emblem and is used as intended: as an impression on documents. The study of seals is known as sigillography or sphragistics. Seals were used in the earliest civilizations and are of considerable importance in archaeology and art history. In ancient Mesopotamia carved or engraved cylinder seals in stone or other materials were used; these could be rolled along to create an impression on clay, used as labels on consignments of trade goods, or for other purposes. They are hollow and it is presumed that they were worn on a string or chain round the neck. Many have only images very finely carved, with no writing, while others have both. From ancient Egypt seals in the form of signet-rings, including some with the names of kings, have been found. Seals have come to light in South Arabia datable to the Himyarite age. One example shows a name written in Aramaic engraved in reverse so as to read in the impression.
From the beginning of the 3rd millennium BC until the Middle Ages, seals of various kinds were in production in the Aegean islands and mainland Greece. In the Early Minoan age these were formed of soft stone and ivory and show particular characteristic forms. By the Middle Minoan age a new set for seal forms and materials appear. Hard stone requires new rotary carving techniques; the Late Bronze Age is the time par excellence of the lens-shaped seal and the seal ring, which continued into the Archaic and Hellenistic periods, in the form of pictorial engraved gems. These were a major luxury art form and became keenly collected, with King Mithridates VI of Pontus the first major collector according to Pliny the Elder, his collection fell as booty to Pompey the Great. Engraved gems continued to be collected until the 19th century. Pliny explained the significance of the signet ring, how over time this ring was worn on the little finger. Known as yinzhang in China, injang in Korea, inshō in Japan, ấn giám in Vietnam, seals have been used in East Asia as a form of written identification since the Qin dynasty.
The seals of the Han dynasty were impressed in a soft clay, but from the Tang dynasty a red ink made from cinnabar was used. In modern times, seals known as "chops" in local colloquial English, are still used instead of handwritten signatures to authenticate official documents or financial transactions. Both individuals and organizations have official seals, they have multiple seals in different sizes and styles for different situations. East Asian seals bear the names of the people or organizations represented, but they can bear poems or personal mottoes. Sometimes both types of seals, or large seals that bear both names and mottoes, are used to authenticate official documents. Seals are so important in East Asia that for
Stockholm is the capital of Sweden and the most populous urban area in the Nordic countries. The city stretches across fourteen islands. Just outside the city and along the coast is the island chain of the Stockholm archipelago; the area has been settled since the Stone Age, in the 6th millennium BC, was founded as a city in 1252 by Swedish statesman Birger Jarl. It is the capital of Stockholm County. Stockholm is the cultural, media and economic centre of Sweden; the Stockholm region alone accounts for over a third of the country's GDP, is among the top 10 regions in Europe by GDP per capita. It is an important global city, the main centre for corporate headquarters in the Nordic region; the city is home to some of Europe's top ranking universities, such as the Stockholm School of Economics, Karolinska Institute and Royal Institute of Technology. It hosts the annual Nobel Prize ceremonies and banquet at the Stockholm Concert Hall and Stockholm City Hall. One of the city's most prized museums, the Vasa Museum, is the most visited non-art museum in Scandinavia.
The Stockholm metro, opened in 1950, is well known for the decor of its stations. Sweden's national football arena is located north of the city centre, in Solna. Ericsson Globe, the national indoor arena, is in the southern part of the city; the city was the host of the 1912 Summer Olympics, hosted the equestrian portion of the 1956 Summer Olympics otherwise held in Melbourne, Australia. Stockholm is the seat of the Swedish government and most of its agencies, including the highest courts in the judiciary, the official residencies of the Swedish monarch and the Prime Minister; the government has its seat in the Rosenbad building, the Riksdag is seated in the Parliament House, the Prime Minister's residence is adjacent at Sager House. Stockholm Palace is the official residence and principal workplace of the Swedish monarch, while Drottningholm Palace, a World Heritage Site on the outskirts of Stockholm, serves as the Royal Family's private residence. After the Ice Age, around 8,000 BC, there were many people living in what is today the Stockholm area, but as temperatures dropped, inhabitants moved south.
Thousands of years as the ground thawed, the climate became tolerable and the lands became fertile, people began to migrate back to the North. At the intersection of the Baltic Sea and lake Mälaren is an archipelago site where the Old Town of Stockholm was first built from about 1000 CE by Vikings, they had a positive trade impact on the area because of the trade routes they created. Stockholm's location appears in Norse sagas as Agnafit, in Heimskringla in connection with the legendary king Agne; the earliest written mention of the name Stockholm dates from 1252, by which time the mines in Bergslagen made it an important site in the iron trade. The first part of the name means log in Swedish, although it may be connected to an old German word meaning fortification; the second part of the name means islet, is thought to refer to the islet Helgeandsholmen in central Stockholm. According to Eric Chronicles the city is said to have been founded by Birger Jarl to protect Sweden from sea invasions made by Karelians after the pillage of Sigtuna on Lake Mälaren in the summer of 1187.
Stockholm's core, the present Old Town was built on the central island next to Helgeandsholmen from the mid-13th century onward. The city rose to prominence as a result of the Baltic trade of the Hanseatic League. Stockholm developed strong economic and cultural linkages with Lübeck, Gdańsk, Visby and Riga during this time. Between 1296 and 1478 Stockholm's City Council was made up of 24 members, half of whom were selected from the town's German-speaking burghers; the strategic and economic importance of the city made Stockholm an important factor in relations between the Danish Kings of the Kalmar Union and the national independence movement in the 15th century. The Danish King Christian II was able to enter the city in 1520. On 8 November 1520 a massacre of opposition figures called the Stockholm Bloodbath took place and set off further uprisings that led to the breakup of the Kalmar Union. With the accession of Gustav Vasa in 1523 and the establishment of a royal power, the population of Stockholm began to grow, reaching 10,000 by 1600.
The 17th century saw Sweden grow into a major European power, reflected in the development of the city of Stockholm. From 1610 to 1680 the population multiplied sixfold. In 1634, Stockholm became the official capital of the Swedish empire. Trading rules were created that gave Stockholm an essential monopoly over trade between foreign merchants and other Swedish and Scandinavian territories. In 1697, Tre Kronor was replaced by Stockholm Palace. In 1710, a plague killed about 20,000 of the population. After the end of the Great Northern War the city stagnated. Population growth halted and economic growth slowed; the city was in shock after having lost its place as the capital of a Great power. However, Stockholm maintained its role as the political centre of Sweden and continued to develop culturally under Gustav III. By the second half of the 19th century, Stockholm had regained its leading economic role. New industries emerged and Stockholm was transformed into an important trade and service centre as well as a key gateway point within Sweden.
The population grew during this time through immigration. At the end
Eric IX of Sweden
Eric IX called Eric the Holy, Saint Eric, Eric the Lawgiver, was a Swedish king c. 1156-60. The Roman Martyrology of the Catholic Church names him as a saint memorialized on 18 May, he is the founder of the House of Eric which ruled Sweden with interruptions from c. 1156 to 1250. As kings from the House of Eric were buried at Varnhem Abbey near Skara in Västergötland, the family is considered to have Geatish roots like other medieval ruling houses in Sweden. Osteological investigations of Eric's remains suggest that he may have lived the last 10-15 years of his life in Västergötland rather than in Uppland where he died. On the other hand, the only manor he is known to have possessed is situated in Västmanland in Svealand. Eriksberg in central Västergötland has been suggested as the original manor of the family; as for his family he had a brother, whose name began with a "J". This brother has been identified with a Joar Jedvardsson; this in turn fits with King Sverre's Saga which refers to "Eirik the Saint, son of Jatvard".
Late medieval Swedish tradition knows the king by the name Eric Jedvardsson. The name of the father, Jedvard may point to English missionary influence, his mother was, according to Cecilia, a daughter of King Blot-Sweyn. This information is debatable, however; the only full account of Eric's life is a hagiographic legend dating from the late 13th century. The historicity of the legend has been much-discussed by Swedish historians, it tells that Eric was of royal blood and was unanimously chosen king of Sweden when there was a vacancy of the kingship. It states that Eric reigned for ten years, which would put the beginning of his reign in c. 1150. If this is correct he would have been a rival king to Sverker I, who had ascended the throne in c. 1132 and was murdered in 1156. At any rate it is assumed that Eric was recognized in most provinces after 1156. While his paternity is obscure, there is good evidence that he strengthened his claims to the throne by marriage to the Danish princess Christina Björnsdotter, a granddaughter of King Inge the Elder.
His realm did not include Östergötland, where Sverker's son Charles VII of Sweden ruled in the late 1150s. According to the legend, Eric did much to consolidate Christianity in his realm. However, the only reliable source mentioning his reign is a Cistercian chronicle from c. 1200. Quite contrary to the impression of pro-clerical policy of the Eric Legend, it says that King Eric and Queen Christina harassed the monks of Varnhem Abbey in Västergötland; some monks left for Denmark where Vitskøl Abbey was founded in 1158. After this, however and Christina changed their stance and allowed Varnhem to be reorganized under Abbot Gerhard of Alvastra Abbey. An early 13th-century source adds. Legend attributes Eric with the initial spread of the Christian faith into Finland, "which at this time was pagan and did Sweden great harm". In an effort to conquer and convert the Finns, he led the First Swedish Crusade east of the Baltic Sea. "Then Eric the Saint asked the people of Finland to make peace with him.
But when they refused to accept it, he fought against them and conquered them by the sword, avenging the blood of the Christian men which they had spilled and for a long time. And when he had scored such an honourable victory he prayed to God, falling on his knees with tears in his eyes. One of his good men asked why he cried, since he should rejoice over the honourable victory which he had won over the enemies of Jesus Christ and the holy faith, he replied: I am happy and praise God since he gave us victory. But I regret that so many souls were lost today, who could have gained eternal life if they had accepted Christianity." Eric persuaded an English Bishop Henry of Uppsala to remain in Finland to evangelize the Finns becoming a martyr. There is no direct confirmation from other sources of the "crusade". However, a papal bull from the early 1170s does mention complaints that "the Finns always, when they are threatened by hostile armies, promise to keep the Christian creed and eagerly ask for preachers and teachers in the Christian law.
The bull implies that the Swedes stood in a certain relation to the Finns and conducted expeditions against them. Moreover, a papal letter from 1216 reserved for Eric's grandson Eric X the right to pagan lands conquered by his ancestors. If interpreted this might allude to conquests in Finland conducted by Eric IX and Canute I. If the "crusade" took place, it was however no more than a sea-borne raid. Eric is portrayed in the legend as the ideal of a just ruler, who supported those who were oppressed by the mighty, expelled the rude and unfair from his kingdom, he was responsible for codifying the laws of his kingdom, which became known as King Eric's Law. Additionally, a hypothesis argues that he established a monastic chapter in Old Uppsala, begun by Benedictines which had come from the Danish abbey of Odense or from Vreta Abbey. If so, he would have established an unpopular system of tithes to support the Church similar to elsewhere in Europe; the legend accentuates Eric's personal piety: "This saintly king of ours conducted many godly prayers and sessions, as well as fasting.
He showed empathy with people in distress, was generous in giving alms to poor people, forced himself to wear a shirt of horsehair, which he used when he was mortifying the flesh... How he dealt with his secret enemy which