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Sweden's National Day

Sweden's National DaySweden's National Day

Despite its very special position, Sweden's national day has not actually been a holiday for very long. But at the same time, it has its ancestry that stretches back several hundred years in time. How it is celebrated, on the other hand, varies greatly between different places in Sweden, and in a way its existence is still controversial.

We have taken a deep dive in Sweden's national day.

Old Sweden but modern tradition

Internationally, Sweden is one of the countries that has been united the longest. It is actually one of the oldest kingdoms in the world. But despite this, Sweden's national day is a fairly new phenomenon. It was not until the end of the 19th century that it was decided to celebrate Sweden as a united kingdom.

Today's history is interestingly closely linked to Skansen. The idea with Skansen has always been to represent a kind of living miniature of Sweden, which means that from the very beginning there was an idea to focus on Sweden as a nation state.

When it was decided in 1893 to celebrate Sweden, it was decided to give feedback to June 6, 1523 when Gusta Vasa became king and also a symbol of a united Sweden.

A fairly new holiday

Although the celebration of Sweden's national day now extends more than a hundred years back in time, it was not until 2005 that it became a public holiday. It makes the day an exciting and both new and old phenomenon.

The celebration varies greatly between different places in Sweden. But as flag day, it is a given to hoist the Swedish flag. Unlike other holidays, there is really no real template for how the national day should be celebrated. Skansen in particular continues to be a common denominator and this is also where a large part of the celebration actually takes place. Whether the day will gain greater broad popular support, however, remains unclear.

First of May - 1st of MayMay 1

Since the end of the 19th century, May Day has been one of the most important recurring festivals and events of the labor movement. Its history is closely linked to the rise of socialism in Europe and has had a very strong hold, not least in Sweden.

But what is the first of May really about?

The growth of the labor movement

Despite the fact that the USA is now mainly associated with the free market, it is actually from there that the first of May originates. Although the idea of organizing works has a much longer history, most believe that its model is a decision made in 1884 in the United States. The American Labor Movement Federation of Labor (AFL) decided to demand a broad limitation of the working day to eight hours.

The Second International was an organization formed in Paris to mark a kind of symbolic extension of the French Revolution, while striking a blow for the rights of future workers. Their formation in 1889 is also usually seen as a kind of beginning of the first corn position as an official holiday.

The labor movement has since been a decentralized social movement with a focus on improving workers' rights. The concept is broad and encompasses both organized trade unions and the ambitions and expressions of individuals. The labor movement has been active in many countries throughout history, but it has been most successful in Western industrialized countries. The labor movement is often associated with socialist and communist political parties and organizations, but it is not necessarily tied to any particular ideology.

The first May train

A special symbol for the first of May is the first May train that takes place every year in several countries. Not least in Sweden, it has had a very strong position. The song Internationalen is in many places the train's more or less official theme song. Although the train is common, they continue to have a controversial position in many parts of the world where the labor movement is not yet accepted.