Talk:Forest Finns

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Unclear sentence[edit]

"To secure their realm, the Swedish kings, notably Gustav Vasa (r. 1528-60) and Eric XIV (r. 1561-8), encouraged farmers to settle these vast wilderness regions, which in turn were used to the traditionally slash-and-burn agriculture."

Who are what was "used to" slash-and-burn agriculture? Or is this supposed to read "used for" slash-and-burn agriculture? — Preceding unsigned comment added by GeneCallahan (talkcontribs) 23:24, 26 June 2011 (UTC)

150 counties?[edit]

"[...] settled to c. 150 counties of Sweden Proper and to Norway". The English word County is usually translated into "län" in Swedish and "fylke" in Norway. There are no where near that many counties (län/fylken) in Sweden and Norway combined. I am guessing that the number refers to parishes. Could someone clarify this? User:Sjöberg1977 —Preceding undated comment added 11:16, 29 August 2012 (UTC)


There is no such thing as a flag of the Forest Finns. The Forest Finns never had any flag, and there was no Forest Finnish country either. The flag that a certain user apparently tries to insert into the top of the article, against the opposition of several people as it turns out, has nothing to do with the topic of the article, viz., the historical ethno-linguistic group called the Forest Finns, but is a pure and ahistorical invention used by a modern Norwegian festival, and as has been pointed out, not even commonly associated with the Forest Finns. Being myself of Forest Finnish descent, I can say with certainty that this flag has absolutely nothing to do with my Forest Finnish ancestors who lived in Sweden. Illustrations should be relevant to the topic of the article, not promote some obscure modern festival's logo and nonsensical idea about a Forest Finnish "republic". Nil Torquan (talk) 20:21, 27 December 2014 (UTC)

The norwegian newspaper article from 2008 shows people in Finnskog (in english literally 'finnforest') proclaiming the "Republikken Finnskogen" for 39. time. But as they are folklore pseudo-rebels there are no will to control the territory militarily. This is not a norwegian Transnistria, this is a minority celebrating their finnish roots. The Sami people keep their own flag. This could be a similar attempt to flag a minority identity within a (or several) national state. I would not use the flag without better sources. This museum might know something. Andrez1 (talk) 02:02, 1 January 2015 (UTC)
This is the website for the festival, same flag in use, seems like they sell citizenship for 50$. Still for fun. Andrez1 (talk) 02:25, 1 January 2015 (UTC)
Highlights of Research on Forest Finns.pdf points to ″C.A. Gottlund's political rally and his petition to the king signed by twelve Forest Finn activists from Värmland and Solør. They pleaded for an autonomous district and three Finnish parishes, which were to be situated on both sides of the Swedish-Norwegian border." Grue, Finnskog, where the festival is held is in the Solør area. So there is an old (1823?) attempt on autonomy. The article on Carl_Axel_Gottlund states "Gottlund began pursuing the creation of an autonomous Finnish county called Fennia." If the flag in question is linked to that, i dont know.Andrez1 (talk) 14:07, 1 January 2015 (UTC)
As far as I know, the flag is a modern invention, used by a festival in Norway since the 70s or 80s. Thus, using it as the primary illustration gives an undue weight to that Norwegian festival, and is ahistorical because the flag wasn't used by the ethno-linguistic group when the group existed as such. When discussing Forest Finns as a "minority", it is important to consider the fact that there are no living person who really belongs to this minority in any other capacity than by partial and distant ancestry, and without actually being brought up in the Forest Finnish culture and without speaking their language. The vast majority of Forest Finns had become assimilated Scandinavians by 1800 (at the time Gottlund was born), and all their descendants have intermarried extensively with Scandinavians for at least 300 years. For example, every living person in Norway has probably Roman ancestry 2,000 years ago, but that doesn't make them Romans in the sense that we ought to have an illustration of a modern Norwegian guy at the top of the article on the Romans. Nil Torquan (talk) 08:25, 3 January 2015 (UTC)
Also note that Carl Axel Gottlund wasn't a Forest Finn. The Forest Finns were an ethnic group that split from the Finns in the 16th and 17th centuries, much like the Afrikaners split from the Dutch. While they are related, they are also separate groups a few centuries later. I think it would have been rather counterproductive for him to make a flag on behalf of the Forest Finns, mimicking the national flags, if he wanted the King to give them some sort of semi-autonomy (from a vexillological perspective, the flag also seems likely to have been created in the 20th century). There wasn't any movement for autonomy among the (almost entirely Scandinavianized) descendants of the Forest Finns themselves in the 19th century. Nil Torquan (talk) 08:30, 3 January 2015 (UTC)
I belive the minority group still exist. In Stortingsmelding nr 15 (2000–2001) Nasjonale minoritetar i Noreg – Om statleg politikk overfor jødar, kvener, rom, romanifolket og skogfinnar the sentence «Ein reknar med at det finst fleire hundre personar i Noreg som identifiserer seg som skogfinnar.» (=It is estimated that there is several hundred persons i Norway who identify themselves as Forrest finns.) They dont speak finnish. So it is more a matter of ethnic identity. The group are formally recognised as a NO:WP National Minority in Norway. The idea can bee seen in Minority group and it gives some Minority rights.
I do not advocate use of the flag as the flag of the Forest Finns. But the disputed flag (
(disputed) Flag of the Forest Finns
) is interesting. (Way to Green, probably wrong proporsjons, and Category:Flags_of_ethnic_groups is only maybe.) Still there is a contemporary use and a history untold. --Andrez1 (talk) 21:33, 3 January 2015 (UTC)
This points at Åsta Holt as the source of the Flag. «Forfatteren Åsta Holth (av slekten Lehmoinen) utviklet i protest republikken Finnskogen for snart 40 år siden, med et eget langsmalt svart og grønt korsflagg, egen regjering og egen bonad.» (= The Author Åsta Holt (family Lehmoinen) developed in protest the Republic Finnforest for almost 40 years ago (2008) whith a long an narrow black and green crossflag, own goverment and bonad. --Andrez1 (talk) 22:03, 3 January 2015 (UTC)

I am of Forest Finnish descent and I have never heard of anyone alive today who "is" a Forest Finn in the sense that is used in this article (or any other articles on peoples). Of course I and other descendants of the Forest Finns identify as persons of (partial) Forest Finnish ancestry, but it would be silly to claim to "be a Forest Finn" (i.e. as one's primary identity) in the way most people in Norway are Norwegians, when no living person speaks the Forest Finnish language and when most descendants of the Forest Finns have been assimilated Scandinavians for centuries, and when all descendants of the Forest Finns have more Swedish/Norwegian ancestry than Finnish. We Scandinavans are also descendend from numerous other peoples like the Wends, but it would certainly be ahistorical and silly to claim that someone living today "is a Wend" (i.e. as their primary identity, as opposed to: has (distant) Wendish ancestry). Nil Torquan (talk) 01:39, 4 January 2015 (UTC)