Portal:Finland

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Finland (Finnish: Suomi [ˈsuo̯mi] (audio speaker iconlisten); Swedish: Finland [ˈfɪ̌nland] (audio speaker iconlisten)), officially the Republic of Finland (Finnish: Suomen tasavalta; Swedish: Republiken Finland (listen to all)), is a Nordic country and a member state of the European Union in Northern Europe. It shares land borders with Sweden to the west, Russia to the east, Norway to the north, and is defined by the Gulf of Bothnia to the west, and the Gulf of Finland of the Baltic Sea across Estonia to the south. Finland covers an area of 338,455 square kilometres (130,678 sq mi) with a population of 5.5 million. Helsinki is the country's capital and largest city, but together with the neighbouring cities of Espoo, Kauniainen, and Vantaa, it forms a larger metropolitan area. Finland is officially bilingual, with Finnish and Swedish being official. The climate varies relative to latitude, from the southern humid continental climate to the northern boreal climate. The land cover is primarily a boreal forest biome, with more than 180,000 recorded lakes.

Finland was first inhabited around 9000 BC after the Last glacial period. The Stone Age introduced several different ceramic styles and cultures. The Bronze Age and Iron Age were characterized by extensive contacts with other cultures in Fennoscandia and the Baltic region. From the late 13th century, Finland gradually became an integral part of Sweden as a consequence of the Northern Crusades. In 1809, as a result of the Finnish War, Finland became part of the Russian Empire as the autonomous Grand Duchy of Finland, during which Finnish art flourished and the idea of independence began to take hold. In 1906, Finland became the first European state to grant universal suffrage, and the first in the world to give all adult citizens the right to run for public office. Nicholas II, the last Tsar of Russia, tried to russify Finland and terminate its political autonomy, but after the 1917 Russian Revolution, Finland declared independence from Russia. In 1918, the fledgling state was divided by the Finnish Civil War. During World War II, Finland fought the Soviet Union in the Winter War and the Continuation War, and Nazi Germany in the Lapland War. After the wars, Finland lost parts of its territory, including the culturally and historically significant town of Vyborg, but maintained its independence. (Full article...)

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L. Onerva (real name Hilja Onerva Lehtinen, 28 April 1882 – 1 March 1972) was a Finnish poet. Onerva also wrote short stories and novels and worked as a translator and critic. In her works, she often dealt with tension in women's lives concerning freedom and commitment. She is also remembered for her complicated relationship with Eino Leino, as well as her marriage to the composer Leevi Madetoja. (Full article...)
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Juuso Pykälistö in his Peugeot 206 WRC during the 2003 Swedish Rally.

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Finnish soldiers at the defensive VT-line during the Soviet Vyborg–Petrozavodsk Offensive in June 1944

The Continuation War, also known as Second Soviet-Finnish war, was a conflict fought by Finland and Nazi Germany, against the Soviet Union (USSR) from 1941 to 1944, as a part of World War II. In Soviet historiography, the war was called the Finnish Front of the Great Patriotic War. Germany regarded its operations in the region as part of its overall war efforts on the Eastern Front and provided Finland with critical material support and military assistance, including economic aid.


The Continuation War began 15 months after the end of the Winter War, also fought between Finland and the USSR. There have been numerous reasons proposed for the Finnish decision to invade, with regaining territory lost during the Winter War being regarded as the most common. Other justifications for the conflict included President Ryti's vision of a Greater Finland and Commander-in-Chief Mannerheim's desire to annex East Karelia. Plans for the attack were developed jointly between the Wehrmacht and a faction of Finnish political and military leaders with the rest of the government remaining ignorant. Despite the co-operation in this conflict, Finland never formally signed the Tripartite Pact, though they did sign the Anti-Comintern Pact. Finland's leadership justified their alliance with Germany as self-defence.

On 25 June 1941 the Soviet Union launched an air raid against Finnish cities, after which Finland declared war and also allowed German troops stationed in Finland to begin offensive warfare. By September 1941, Finland had regained its post–Winter War concessions to the Soviet Union: the Karelian Isthmus and Ladoga Karelia. However, the Finnish Army continued the offensive past the pre-1939 border with the conquest of East Karelia, including Petrozavodsk, as well as halting only around 30–32 km (19–20 mi) from the centre of Leningrad, where they participated in besieging the city by cutting its northern supply routes and digging in until 1944. In Lapland, joint German–Finnish forces failed to capture Murmansk or cut the Kirov (Murmansk) Railway, a transit route for lend-lease equipment to the USSR. The conflict stabilised with only minor skirmishes until the tide of the war turned against the Germans and the Soviet Union's strategic Vyborg–Petrozavodsk Offensive in June 1944. The attack drove the Finns from most of the territories they had gained during the war, but the Finnish Army halted the offensive in August 1944. (Full article...)

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