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Eastward Expansion

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Chapter Summary

By the end of the reign of Magnus Ladulås much of the territory of present-day Finland had become part of the Swedish kingdom. Archaeological finds suggest a strong early influence from Svealand, but closer similarities with Östergötland in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. The Svealand law codes state clearly that both patrol fleet and war ledung could be led by a representative chosen by the king, the förman, and this is precisely what the author of Erikskrönikan calls King Erik's maghe, Birger. By the end of the thirteenth century, Sweden and Novgorod were battling for control of Karelia. Archaeological evidence suggests that Dmitri's invasion occurred during a period when Karelian culture was assimilating to that of Novgorod. According to Erikskrönikan, Sweden did more than simply build fortresses to secure its hold on Finland.

Keywords: Östergötland; Karelia; Magnus Ladulås; Novgorod; Svealand law codes; Swedish kingdom



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