Stavanger /stəˈvæŋər/ is a city and municipality in Norway. The city is the third-largest urban zone and metropolitan area in Norway, the municipality is the fourth most populous in Norway. Located on the Stavanger Peninsula in Southwest Norway, Stavanger counts its official founding year as 1125, Stavangers core is to a large degree 18th- and 19th-century wooden houses that are protected and considered part of the citys cultural heritage. The citys rapid growth in the late 20th century was primarily a result of Norways booming offshore oil industry. Today the oil industry is a key industry in the Stavanger region, the largest company in the Nordic region, Norwegian energy company Statoil is headquartered in Stavanger. Multiple educational institutions for education are located in Stavanger. The largest of these is the University of Stavanger and international military installations are located in Stavanger, among these is the North Atlantic Treaty Organisations Joint Warfare Center. Other international establishments, and especially local branches of foreign oil and gas companies, immigrants make up 11.
3% of Stavangers population. Stavanger has since the early 2000s consistently had an unemployment rate lower than the Norwegian and European average. In 2011, the unemployment rate was less than 2%, the city is among those that frequent various lists of expensive cities in the world, and Stavanger has even been ranked as the worlds most expensive city by certain indexes. Stavanger is served by international airport Stavanger Airport, which offers flights to cities in most major European countries, the airport was named most punctual European regional airport by flightstats. com in 2010. Every two years, Stavanger organizes the Offshore Northern Seas, which is the second largest exhibition, gladmat food festival is held each year and is considered to be one of Scandinavias leading food festivals. The city is known for being one of the nations premier culinary clusters. Stavanger 2008 European Capital of Culture, the first traces of settlement in the Stavanger region come from the days when the ice retreated after the last ice age c.10,000 years ago.
Stavanger grew into a center of administration and an important south-west coast market town around 1100–1300. Stavanger fulfilled an urban role prior to its status as city, Bishop Reinald, who may have come from Winchester, England, is said to have started construction of Stavanger Cathedral around 1100. It was finished around 1125, and the city of Stavanger counts 1125 as its year of foundation, with the Protestant Reformation in 1536, Stavangers role as a religious center declined, and the establishment of Kristiansand in the early 17th century led to the relocation of the bishopric. However, rich herring fisheries in the 19th century gave the city new life, Stavanger was established as a municipality 1 January 1838
Aalborg, spelled Ålborg, is an industrial and university city in the North of Jutland, Denmark. It has an population of 112,194, making it the fourth most populous city in Denmark. With a population of 210,316, the Municipality of Aalborg is the third most populous in the country after Copenhagen, by road Aalborg is 64 kilometres southwest of Frederikshavn, and 118 kilometres north of Aarhus. The distance to Copenhagen is 412 kilometres, the earliest settlements date to around AD700. Aalborgs position at the narrowest point on the Limfjord made it an important harbour during the Middle Ages, the city is known for its half-timbered mansions built by its prosperous merchants. Budolfi Church, now a cathedral, dates from the end of the 14th century and Aalborghus Castle, Aalborg is a city in transition from a working-class industrial area to a knowledge-based community. A major exporter of grain and spirits, its business interests include Siemens Wind Power, Aalborg Industries. These companies have become global producers of wind turbine rotors, marine boilers, with its theatres, symphony orchestra, opera company, performance venues, and museums such as Aalborg Historical Museum and the Aalborg Museum of Modern Art, Aalborg is an important cultural hub.
The Aalborg Carnival, held at the end of May, is one of the largest festivals in Scandinavia, the major university is the University of Aalborg, founded in 1974, which has more than 17,000 students. Trænregimentet, the Danish regiment for army supply and emergency personnel, is in Aalborg. Aalborg University Hospital, the largest in the north of Jutland, was founded in 1881. The football club Aalborg BK, established in 1885 and based at Nordjyske Arena, won the Danish Superliga in the 1994–95 season, the 1998–99 season, the 2007–08 season and the 2013–14 season. Other sports associations include the icehockey club Aalborg Pirates, the handball team Aalborg Håndbold, the rugby club Aalborg RK. Aalborg Railway Station, on John F. Kennedys Plads has connected the city to Randers, Aalborg Airport is just 6 kilometres northwest of the city centre, and the E45, a European route from Karesuando, Sweden, to Gela, passes through Aalborg. The European Commission has concluded that the citizens of Aalborg are the most satisfied people in Europe with their city.
The area around the narrowest point on the Limfjord attracted settlements as far back as the Iron Age leading to a thriving Viking community until around the year 1000 in what has now become Aalborg. In the Middle Ages, royal trading privileges, a natural harbour, despite the difficulties it experienced over the centuries, the city began to prosper once again towards the end of the 19th century when a bridge was built over Limfjord and the railway arrived. Aalborgs initial growth relied on heavy industry but its current development focuses on culture, Aalborg traces its history back over a thousand years
Esbjerg is a seaport town and seat of Esbjerg Municipality on the west coast of the Jutland peninsula in southwest Denmark. By road, it is 71 kilometres west of Kolding and 164 kilometres southwest of Aarhus, with an urban population of 71,618, it is the fifth-largest city in Denmark, and the largest in west Jutland. Before a decision was made to establish a harbour at Esbjerg in 1868, Esbjerg developed quickly with the population rising to 13,000 by 1901 and 70,000 by 1970. In addition to its fishing and shipping activities, it became an important centre for agricultural exports. Over the years, many of the visitors have arrived by ferry from Harwich, England. The harbour facilities are being expanded to answer the needs of the wind-turbine industry, Esbjerg is served by Esbjerg Airport with flights to Aberdeen and Stavanger, Norway. The town has several museums and entertainment venues, including Esbjerg Art Museum, Esbjerg Museum. The Esbjerg Performing Arts Centre was completed in 1997 to designs by Jan, when approached by sea, the Man Meets the Sea is one of the prominent monuments, consisting of four 9-metre-tall white-coloured men, overlooking Sædding Beach.
The sculpture was designed by Svend Wiig Hansen and installed in 1995 and it hosts branches of the University of Southern Denmark and Aalborg University, Esbjerg is increasingly recognized for its university facilities and sporting activities. Esbjergs oldest existing house, on the corner of Kongensgade, was built around 1660, at the time, Esbjerg consisted of only a few farms. Developed under royal decree from 1868 until 1874, the harbour was opened in 1874, with rail connections to Varde and to Fredericia. Initial planning of the town was conducted by chartered surveyor H. Wilkens in 1870 with streets laid out in the form of a rectangular grid, the market square was positioned at the centre, midway between the harbour and the railway station. From only 400 inhabitants at the beginning of the 1870s, the town and its population rapidly, with 1529 residents mentioned in 1880. In 1893, Esbjerg became a municipality in its own right, receiving the status and privileges of a town in 1899. A number of institutions and facilities were established, including the courthouse and town hall, the gas and waterworks.
From the beginning of the 20th century, Esbjerg prospered not only as a fishing port, established in 1895 by nine local dairies, the butter-packaging factory, Dansk Andels Smørpakkeri, employed some 150 workers until 1920, packing and dispatching butter for the London market. It was extended to include egg marketing under the name Dansk Andels Ægeksport, ultimately, it handled produce from 140 dairies spread across the whole of Jutland. After the Second World War, the town developed several agricultural industries, the slaughterhouse and meat packaging facility, Esbjerg Andels-Slagteri, established in 1887, became Denmarks sixth largest by 1962
Zealand is the largest and most populated island in Denmark with a population of 2,267,659. It is the 96th-largest island in the world by area and the 35th most populous and it is connected to Funen by the Great Belt Fixed Link, to Lolland, Falster by the Storstrøm Bridge and the Farø Bridges. Zealand is linked to Amager by five bridges, Zealand is linked indirectly, through intervening islands by a series of bridges and tunnels, to southern Sweden. Copenhagen, the capital of Denmark, is located partly on the shore of Zealand. Other cities on Zealand include Roskilde, Hillerød, Næstved and Helsingør, the island is not connected historically to the Pacific nation of New Zealand, which is named after the Dutch province of Zeeland. In Norse mythology as told in the story of Gylfaginning, the island was created by the goddess Gefjun after she tricked Gylfi and she removed a piece of land and transported it to Denmark, which became Zealand. The vacant area was filled with water and became Mälaren, since modern maps show a similarity between Zealand and the Swedish lake Vänern, it is sometimes identified as the hole left by Gefjun.
Zealand is the most populous Danish island and it is irregularly shaped, and is north of the islands of Lolland, and Møn. The small island of Amager lies immediately east, Copenhagen is mostly on Zealand but extends across northern Amager. A number of bridges and the Copenhagen Metro connect Zealand to Amager, Zealand is joined in the west to Funen, by the Great Belt Fixed Link, and Funen is connected by bridges to the countrys mainland, Jutland. Gyldenløveshøj, south of the city Roskilde, has a height of 126 metres, Zealand gives its name to the Selandian era of the Paleocene. Urban areas with 10, 000+ inhabitants, North Zealand Media related to Zealand at Wikimedia Commons Zealand travel guide from Wikivoyage
Copenhagen Central Station
It is situated between the districts of Indre By and Vesterbro with entrances from Bernstorffsgade, Banegårdspladsen and access to platforms from Tietgensgade. Copenhagen Central Station is the hub of the DSB railway network serving Denmark, the station services the Copenhagen S-train network, but the S-train system in Copenhagen doesnt use any kind of hub at all. It is an urban transit which differs from most Metro systems mainly by being a type of railway, at the station are two platforms with four tracks that are used by the S-trains only. All other trains usually use the four platforms and eight tracks. In addition to the original 6 island-platforms and their 12 tracks, has one additional track far been constructed, the single spare track, called track 26, was initially built for trains to southern Sweden, while Malmö C still was a terminus. It has occasionally used for express trains to or from Sweden or to or from Norway. After the introduction of controls and mandatory identity checks for travel to Sweden this track was fenced and used for X2000.
The extra track 26 is located 200 metres south of the building and is reachable only by walking along the platform for track 4 and 5 or from a staircase from the Tietgensgade street. The platforms begin under the passenger hall. A hotel is built above the S-train tracks in the Northern end, in the opposite end, all platforms are covered with the typical railway arched roof. This roof is shorter than the platforms, but all tracks remain below street level, the main hall isnt just a waiting hall, but a market place where most things can be bought. From fresh fruit sellers to market, postal office, currency exchanges, coffee shops, restaurants. There are travel center for information an manual sale of tickets, shower rooms are available for a smaller fee. The current station building opened in 1911 and is the work of architect Heinrich Wenck, the station has 7 platforms and 13 tracks. On the station there are many small shops, cafeterias. All public transport within Greater Copenhagen are divided into close to 100 ticket fare zones, the Central station is located in fare zone 1, which together with zones 2 and 3 constitute Copenhagen municipality and the exclave of Frederiksberg municipality.
As the cheapest single ticket always is valid in two zones, a ticket bought at the station is valid within the entire city centre. A ticket to Copenhagen Airport Kastrup, demands the payment for three zones since its located in zone 4, from July 2019 the Central station will be served by the new Copenhagen Metro line M3, which will be a circular line with 17 stations
Atlantic slave trade
The Atlantic slave trade or transatlantic slave trade took place across the Atlantic Ocean from the 15th through the 19th centuries. This was crucial to those western European countries which, in the late 17th and 18th centuries, were vying with each other to create overseas empires, the Portuguese were the first to engage in the New World slave trade in the 16th century. In 1526, the Portuguese completed the first transatlantic voyage from Africa to the Americas. The first Africans imported to the English colonies were classified as indentured servants, like coming from England. By the middle of the 17th century, slavery had hardened as a caste and their offspring were legally the property of their owners. As property, the people were considered merchandise or units of labour, the major Atlantic slave trading nations, ordered by trade volume, the Portuguese, the British, the French, the Spanish, and the Dutch Empire. Several had established outposts on the African coast where they purchased slaves from local African leaders and these slaves were managed by a factor who was established on or near the coast to expedite the shipping of slaves to the New World.
Slaves were kept in a factory while awaiting shipment, current estimates are that about 12 million Africans were shipped across the Atlantic, although the number purchased by the traders is considerably higher, as the passage had a high death rate. Near the beginning of the century, various governments acted to ban the trade. In the early twenty-first century, several governments issued apologies for the slave trade. The Atlantic slave trade arose after trade contacts were first made between the continents of the Old World and those of the New World, between 1600 and 1800, approximately 300,000 sailors engaged in the slave trade visited West Africa. In doing so, they came into contact with societies living along the west African coast, historian John Thornton noted, A number of technical and geographical factors combined to make Europeans the most likely people to explore the Atlantic and develop its commerce. That leadership gave rise to the myth that the Iberians were the leaders of the exploration.
Slavery was practiced in parts of Africa, Asia. There is evidence that people from some African states were exported to other states in Africa, Europe. The African slave trade provided a number of slaves to Europeans. The Atlantic slave trade was not the slave trade from Africa, although it was the largest in volume. As Elikia M’bokolo wrote in Le Monde diplomatique, The African continent was bled of its resources via all possible routes
Jutland, known as the Cimbric or Cimbrian Peninsula, is a peninsula of Northern Europe that forms the continental portion of Denmark and the northern portion of Germany. The names are derived from the Jutes and the Cimbri, jutlands terrain is relatively flat, with open lands, heaths and peat bogs in the west and a more elevated and slightly hilly terrain in the east. Jutland is a peninsula bounded by the North Sea to the west, the Skagerrak to the north and historically, Jutland comprises the regions of South Jutland, West Jutland, East Jutland and North Jutland. There are several subdivisions and regional names, some of which are still occasionally encountered today. They include Nørrejyllland, Sydvestjylland and Slesvig, Jutland was regulated by the Law Code of Jutland. This civic code covered the Jutland Peninsula from the north of the River Eider to Funen as well as the North Jutlandic Island. The Danish part of Jutland is currently divided into three regions, North Denmark Region, Central Denmark Region and Region of Southern Denmark.
These three regions have an area of 29,775 km2, a population of 2,599,104. The northernmost part of Jutland is separated from the mainland by the Limfjord and this area is called the North Jutlandic Island, Vendsyssel-Thy or simply Jutland north of the Limfjord, it is only partly co-terminous with the North Jutland region. Inhabitants of Als would agree to be South Jutlanders, but not necessarily Jutlanders, the Danish Wadden Sea Islands and the German North Frisian Islands stretch along the southwest coast of Jutland in the German Bight. Jutland has historically been one of the three lands of Denmark, the two being Scania and Zealand. Before that, according to Ptolemy, Jutland or the Cimbric Chersonese was the home of Teutons, many Angles and Jutes migrated from Continental Europe to Great Britain starting in c.450 AD. The Angles themselves gave their name to the new emerging kingdoms called England and this is thought by some to be related to the invasion of Europe by the Huns from Asia. Saxons and Frisii migrated to the region in the part of the Christian era.
Old Saxony was on referred to as Holstein, during the First World War, the Battle of Jutland in the North Sea west of Jutland was one of the largest naval battles in history. In this pitched battle, the British Royal Navy engaged the Imperial German Navy, the British fleet sustained greater losses, but remained in control of the North Sea, so in strategic terms, most historians regard Jutland either as a British victory or as indecisive. The distinctive Jutish dialects differ substantially from standard Danish, especially West Jutlandic, dialect usage, although in decline, is better preserved in Jutland than in eastern Denmark, and Jutlander speech remains a stereotype among many Copenhageners and eastern Danes. Administratively, Danish Jutland comprises three of Denmarks five regions, namely the Region Nordjylland, Region Midtjylland and the half of Region of Southern Denmark
Frederikshavn is a Danish town in Frederikshavn municipality, Region Nordjylland, on the northeast coast of the Jutland peninsula in northern Denmark. Its name translates to Frederiks harbour, the town has a population of 23,156, and is an important traffic portal with its ferry connections to Sweden and Norway. The town is known for fishing, and its fishing. The Danish term frederikshavner is used to denote a quality plaice, frederikshavns oldest building, Fiskerklyngen, is originally from the mid-16th century, but the houses now there are from 18th–19th centuries. Frederikshavn was originally called Fladstrand, until 1818 when it received status as a merchant town under the name of Frederikshavn, due to its advantageous proximity to the entrance to the Baltic Sea, Frederikshavn has historically been a naval base of some strategic importance. Peter Tordenskjold barricaded himself here in the fortress that German troops had built in the 17th century. During the Great Northern War the Battle of Fladstrand was fought in the sea between Swedish and Danish naval forces.
The only old military installations remaining to this day are the Gunpowder Tower, constructed in 1688, the Gunpowder Tower has been preserved, and is incorporated in the municipalitys coat-of-arms. Bangsbo Museum Frederikshavn Art Museum Frederikshavn Shipyard Historical Society Tordenskiold Festival, like the rest of North Jutland, was hit with hard unemployment. The towns largest workplace, the shipyard Danyard, closed in the late 1990s and this resulted in more than 2,000 workers being unemployed. Today there is activity at the large ship building area. In summer 2008, the unemployment rate, like the rest of Denmark, as with many provincial municipalities around the world, some of its young people leave to large urban cities. However, the municipality is engaged in many innovative projects which are attracting tourists. The process is expected to be completed by 2015, Frederikshavn is served by Frederikshavn railway station. It is the train station of the Vendsyssel and Skagen railway lines and offers direct InterCity services to Copenhagen, regional train services to Aalborg.
Former footballer Allan Olsen, musician Lucas Bjerregaard, Danish golfer EUC Nord - a technical school located partly in Frederikshavn
The Faroe Islands, spelled the Faeroes, is an archipelago between the Norwegian Sea and the North Atlantic, about halfway between Norway and Iceland,320 kilometres north-northwest of Scotland. Its area is about 1,400 square kilometres with a population of 49,188 in 2016, the Faeroe Islands is an autonomous country within the Danish Realm. The land of the Faeroes is rugged, and these islands have an oceanic climate, wet, cloudy. Despite this island groups northerly latitude, temperatures average above freezing throughout the year because of the Gulf Stream, between 1035 and 1814, the Faeroes were part of the Hereditary Kingdom of Norway. In 1814, the Treaty of Kiel granted Denmark control over the islands, the Faroe Islands have been a self-governing country within the Kingdom of Denmark since 1948. The Faroese have control of most domestic matters, areas that remain the responsibility of Denmark include military defence, the police department, the justice department and foreign affairs. However, as they are not part of the customs area as Denmark, the Faroe Islands have an independent trade policy.
The islands have representation in the Nordic Council as members of the Danish delegation, the people of the Faroe Islands compete as national team in certain sports. In Danish, the name Færøerne may reflect an Old Norse word fær, the morpheme øerne represents a plural of ø in Danish. The Danish name thus translates as the islands of sheep, in Faroese, the name appears as Føroyar. Oyar represents the plural of oy, older Faroese for island, the modern Faeroese word for island is oyggj. In the English language, their name is sometimes spelled Faeroe, archaeological evidence shows settlers living on the Faroe Islands in two successive periods prior to the arrival of the Norse, the first between 400 and 600 and the second between 600 and 800. Scientists from the University of Aberdeen have found early cereal pollen from domesticated plants, archaeologist Mike Church noted that Dicuil mentioned what may have been the Faroes. He suggested that the living there might have been from Ireland, Scotland or Scandinavia.
A Latin account of a made by Brendan, an Irish monastic saint who lived around 484–578. This association, however, is far from conclusive in its description, Dicuil, an Irish monk of the early 9th century, wrote a more definite account. 800, bringing Old West Norse, which evolved into the modern Faroese language, according to Icelandic sagas such as Færeyjar Saga, one of the best known men in the island was Tróndur í Gøtu, a descendant of Scandinavian chiefs who had settled in Dublin, Ireland. Tróndur led the battle against Sigmund Brestursson, the Norwegian monarchy, a traditional name for the islands in Irish, Na Scigirí, possibly refers to the Skeggjar Beards, a nickname given to island dwellers
Copenhagen, Danish, København, Hafnia) is the capital and most populous city of Denmark. Copenhagen has an population of 1,280,371. The Copenhagen metropolitan area has just over 2 million inhabitants, the city is situated on the eastern coast of the island of Zealand, another small portion of the city is located on Amager, and is separated from Malmö, Sweden, by the strait of Øresund. The Øresund Bridge connects the two cities by rail and road, originally a Viking fishing village founded in the 10th century, Copenhagen became the capital of Denmark in the early 15th century. Beginning in the 17th century it consolidated its position as a centre of power with its institutions, defences. After suffering from the effects of plague and fire in the 18th century and this included construction of the prestigious district of Frederiksstaden and founding of such cultural institutions as the Royal Theatre and the Royal Academy of Fine Arts. Later, following the Second World War, the Finger Plan fostered the development of housing, since the turn of the 21st century, Copenhagen has seen strong urban and cultural development, facilitated by investment in its institutions and infrastructure.
The city is the cultural and governmental centre of Denmark, Copenhagens economy has seen rapid developments in the service sector, especially through initiatives in information technology and clean technology. Since the completion of the Øresund Bridge, Copenhagen has become integrated with the Swedish province of Scania and its largest city, Malmö. With a number of connecting the various districts, the cityscape is characterized by parks, promenades. Copenhagen is home to the University of Copenhagen, the Technical University of Denmark, the University of Copenhagen, founded in 1479, is the oldest university in Denmark. Copenhagen is home to the FC København and Brøndby football clubs, the annual Copenhagen Marathon was established in 1980. Copenhagen is one of the most bicycle-friendly cities in the world, the Copenhagen Metro serves central Copenhagen while the Copenhagen S-train network connects central Copenhagen to its outlying boroughs. Serving roughly 2 million passengers a month, Copenhagen Airport, Kastrup, is the largest airport in the Nordic countries, the name of the city reflects its origin as a harbour and a place of commerce.
The original designation, from which the contemporary Danish name derives, was Køpmannæhafn, meaning merchants harbour, the literal English translation would be Chapmans haven. The English name for the city was adapted from its Low German name, the abbreviations Kbh. or Kbhvn are often used in Danish for København, and kbh. for københavnsk. The chemical element hafnium is named for Copenhagen, where it was discovered, the bacterium Hafnia is named after Copenhagen, Vagn Møller of the State Serum Institute in Copenhagen named it in 1954. Excavations in Pilestræde have led to the discovery of a well from the late 12th century, the remains of an ancient church, with graves dating to the 11th century, have been unearthed near where Strøget meets Rådhuspladsen
Aarhus is the second-largest city in Denmark and the seat of Aarhus municipality. It is located on the east coast of the Jutland peninsula, in the centre of Denmark,187 kilometres northwest of Copenhagen and 289 kilometres north of Hamburg. The inner urban area contains 264,716 inhabitants and the population is 330,639. Aarhus is the city in the East Jutland metropolitan area. The history of Aarhus began as a fortified Viking settlement founded in the 8th century, the city was founded on the northern shores of a fjord at a natural harbour and the primary driver of growth was for centuries seaborne trade in agricultural products. Market town privileges were granted in 1441, but growth stagnated in the 17th century as the city suffered blockades, in the 19th century it was occupied twice by German troops during the Schleswig Wars but avoided destruction. As the industrial revolution took hold, the city grew to become the second-largest in the country by the 20th century, today Aarhus is at the cultural and economic core of the region and the largest centre for trade and industry in Jutland.
The city ranks as the 92nd largest city in the European Union and it is a top 100 conference city in the world. Aarhus is the industrial port of the country in terms of container handling. Major Danish companies have based their headquarters here and people commute for work and it is a centre for research and education in the Nordic countries and home to Aarhus University, Scandinavias largest university, including Aarhus University Hospital and INCUBA Science Park. Aarhus is notable for its musical history, in the 1950s many jazz clubs sprang up around the city, fuelled by the young population. By the 1960s, the music scene diversified into rock and other genres, in the 1970s and 1980s, Aarhus became the centre for Denmarks rock music fostering many iconic bands such as TV-2 and Gnags. Aarhus is home to the annual eight-day Aarhus International Jazz Festival, the SPoT Festival, in 2017 Aarhus are European Capital of Culture. In Valdemars Census Book the city was called Arus, and in Icelandic it was known as Aros and it is a compound of the two words ār, genitive of ā, and ōss.
The name originates from the location around the mouth of Aarhus Å. The spelling Aarhus is first found in 1406 and gradually became the norm in the 17th century, aarhus/Århus spelling With the Danish spelling reform of 1948, Aa was changed to Å. Some Danish cities resisted the new spelling of their names, notably Aalborg, Århus city council explicitly embraced the new spelling, as it was thought to enhance an image of progressiveness. In 2010, the city voted to change the name from Århus to Aarhus in order to strengthen the international profile of the city
Iceland is a Nordic island country in the North Atlantic Ocean. It has a population of 332,529 and an area of 103,000 km2, the capital and largest city is Reykjavík. Reykjavík and the areas in the southwest of the country are home to over two-thirds of the population. Iceland is volcanically and geologically active, the interior consists of a plateau characterised by sand and lava fields and glaciers, while many glacial rivers flow to the sea through the lowlands. Iceland is warmed by the Gulf Stream and has a climate, despite a high latitude just outside the Arctic Circle. Its high latitude and marine influence still keeps summers chilly, with most of the archipelago having a tundra climate. According to the ancient manuscript Landnámabók, the settlement of Iceland began in the year 874 AD when the Norwegian chieftain Ingólfr Arnarson became the first permanent settler on the island. In the following centuries, and to a lesser extent other Scandinavians, emigrated to Iceland, the island was governed as an independent commonwealth under the Althing, one of the worlds oldest functioning legislative assemblies.
Following a period of strife, Iceland acceded to Norwegian rule in the 13th century. The establishment of the Kalmar Union in 1397 united the kingdoms of Norway, Iceland thus followed Norways integration to that Union and came under Danish rule after Swedens secession from that union in 1523. In the wake of the French revolution and the Napoleonic wars, Icelands struggle for independence took form and culminated in independence in 1918, until the 20th century, Iceland relied largely on subsistence fishing and agriculture, and was among the poorest in Europe. Industrialisation of the fisheries and Marshall Plan aid following World War II brought prosperity, in 1994, it became a part of the European Economic Area, which further diversified the economy into sectors such as finance and manufacturing. Iceland has an economy with relatively low taxes compared to other OECD countries. It maintains a Nordic social welfare system that provides health care. Iceland ranks high in economic and social stability and equality, in 2013, it was ranked as the 13th most-developed country in the world by the United Nations Human Development Index.
Iceland runs almost completely on renewable energy, some bankers were jailed, and the economy has made a significant recovery, in large part due to a surge in tourism. Icelandic culture is founded upon the nations Scandinavian heritage, most Icelanders are descendants of Germanic and Gaelic settlers. Icelandic, a North Germanic language, is descended from Old Norse and is related to Faroese