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Halmstad[ˈhalmsta] is a port, university, industrial and recreational city at the mouth of Nissan in the province of Halland on the Swedish west coast. Halmstad is the seat of Halmstad Municipality and the capital of Halland County. The city had a population of 62,797 in 2012, out of a municipal total of over 90,000 (18th most populous - 2012). Halmstad is Sweden's 20th-largest city by population and located about midway between Gothenburg (the second most populous) and Malmö (the third).
Halmstad, at the time part of the Kingdom of Denmark, received its first city charter in 1307, and the city celebrated its 700th anniversary in 2007. The oldest remains of that first town are to be found at "Övraby" upstream on Nissan, just south of and quite close to the present day regiment buildings. The remains of the church can still be seen today between a defunct brick industry and a former landfill.
In the 1320s the town moved to the present day town centre. At this time there were two monasteries in the town and during the 15th century the St. Nikolai church was built. Halland was the object of numerous battles, sieges and occupations by Swedish troops.
During the Kalmar Union – a Nordic Union between Sweden, Norway and Denmark which lasted between 1400 and 1520 – it was in Halmstad that the Union King was to be finally selected.
At the end of the 16th century, the DanishKing Christian IV ordered the fortification of Halmstad and in the beginning of the 17th century built a crescent-shaped fort with Nissan as part of the defences.
1619 is an important date in the history of Halmstad. In March of that year, King Gustav II Adolf of Sweden and Christian IV met at the castle. Over a period of a week they celebrated the payment in full of the Älvsborg ransom. August of the same year saw the destruction of Halmstad by fire.
Halland became part of Sweden for a period of thirty years when peace was declared at the Treaty of Brömsebro in 1645 and Danish rule ended. The Treaty of Roskilde in 1658 made this acquisition permanent. Sweden defeated Denmark in the Battle of Fyllebro which took place in 1676 just outside Halmstad.
The first May Day demonstration in Sweden was held in Halmstad in 1897.
The population grew from 48,800 in 1990 to 58,577 in 2010.
Founded in 1983, Halmstad University is a public higher education institution offering bachelor's and master's programs in various fields of study. In addition, it conducts Ph.D. programs in three fields of research: Information Technology, Innovation Science and Health Science. Halmstad University has more than 9 000 students, including 245 exchange students (2013) and 163 international programme students (2013).