Talk:Northern Europe

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Unreferenced Material[edit]

I have removed the incorrect 'geo-political' map of Northern Europe, according to UN Sub-region classification the data used to compile said map was incorrect, I have also added the 'unreferenced' tab to the un-sourced "geography" section, this page is in need of a major cleanup.Celareon (talk) 22:42, 26 August 2009 (UTC)

Baltics are Scandinavian?[edit]

Is it really correct to state that the Baltic states are culturally Scandinavian countries? I would have thought them no more culturally distant from the Slavs than from the Scandinavians, apart from with Estonia & Finland. --User:Crusadeonilliteracy 17:26, Jun 4, 2003

No, Scandinavia only consists of Norway, Denmark and Sweden. --Oddeivind (talk) 10:11, 23 January 2012 (UTC)
The Baltic Republics have - due to hanseatic and religious traditions as well as long lasting Swedish and German settlements (lasting a much longer period of time than today's Russian settlement) going back to medieval ages very much more in common with Scandinavia and Central Europe as with Russia and the Slavic countries, though - of course - they always have been a connecting tie between Russia and Scandinavia.
User: 15:57, Jun 17, 2003

The only Baltic state with historic links to Scandinavia is Estonia, which was briefly under Swedish rule in the 17th century. The country also had, until the end of the Second World War, a small Swedish minority inhabiting its western islands.

Neither the period of Swedish rule, nor the existance of a Swedish majority have left much of an imprint on the country; culturally and politically Germany and Russia, and later still, the Soviet Union have been much more significant for the development of Estonia.

The other Baltic states have even more tenuous links with Scandinavia, and it would therefore be utterly misguided to see them as Scandinavian countries – it may even be asked if it is justified to consider them as Nordic ones, so different are they culturally, politically and historically from the five Nordic countries.

User:  21:11, Jun 16, 2004

Finland was ruled by Sweden. It also rules part of the Scandinavian peninsula, so I would say that Finland is a Nordic/Scandinavian country. Estonia is connected but probably should not be considered, one. - Cnut

Northern Europe wore decorative wear back in the 18th century - boy

Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania were all in hand occupied by Sweden, and there were many Viking settlements in the lands before. What's there to debate about? Don't talk about something if you don't know.

Seriously, I wonder about who doesn't know, especially all the unsigned contributors. I think I'll wikilink the respective country atrticles - you might at least read them first before trying to be a wiseguy! The history of each of the three Baltic countries was quite different. That's part of why they're three different countries - duh. Estonia was in the Swedish/Scandinavian sphere of influence for most of its history, later Russia; Latvia was for a long time undet the Livonian knights, later Sweden, an appreciable time under the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, later; Lithuania was significantly different again, being one half of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth for many centuries and having absolutely nothing to do with Sweden apart from a few measly years of occupation. Deuar 19:30, 20 December 2006 (UTC)

Aryan Race[edit]

I know that the Aryan race is people of european descent. My questions are these:

What is the deal with the blond hair, purple eyed people?!!!!

User: 01:30, Jan 12, 2005
You may want to read the article on Master race. --Ruhrjung 22:46, Jan 12, 2005 (UTC)

What a strange question? I'm a Brit (and therefore Northern European) with blond hair and green eyes. Is there a deal with me because I'd equally like to know what it is, if there is.

Northern Europe definitions[edit]

Ruhrjung, you claim that Wikipedia is not an authoritative source. Why is that the case when other encyclopedias like Britannica and Encarta have the right to this authority? Why does Wikipedia, instead of being a precise information resource, always have to give confused and uncertain definitions about things? Secondly, even if "Wikipedia has to mirror and report current and/or historical usage, not to bend reality to seem more logic and sensible", then the definition I put as Northern Europe is correct, and is used. What don't you agree with - we know Scandinavia is in Northern Europe, Finland also. So is it the Baltic states you don't agree with? Or the absence of UK & Ireland? The Baltic states, are Northern European - more and more people are starting to see them that way. Geographically, they are northern, more northern than Denmark. Culturally, they are Nordic - Lutheran, Nordic customs, Nordic historical influences, etc. Even politically and socially, they are becoming more and more northern - very free market economies (as in, some of the most liberal economic policies in the world), technological adoption, etc. They are Northern European, I don't see what's wrong with including them in this article, especially since the 2nd remark talks about their relation to Eastern Europe. Now, on to UK & Ireland - these countries are not Northern European, especially from a British POV (I'm not British by the way). Very few people consider these countries "Nordic", and, while culturally they have some similarities to Scandinavia, they have been for long attached more to Western Europe - France, Belgium, Netherlands, etc. As with Northern Germany, Poland and Russia, because they are just regions, we can't include them in the statistics. They have however, been mentioned as "sometimes included". So, for that reason, I don't see what the problem is with including a map and some statistics about a region that has a lot in common and we can use to compare to other regions in Europe which are different. Cheers, Ronline 05:11, 9 Feb 2005 (UTC)

I claim that Wikipedia's credibility and authority would be destroyed if Wikipedia took particular points of views – particularly if they are in opposition against common English usage. What you ought to do, is to word your preferred POV along the lines of According to Whitehall, the following countries are currently considered... Them with other preferred POV would thereby be invited to substantiate also their claims, and as a result there would be less of conflicts and more of relevance in Wikipedia.
--Ruhrjung 08:40, Feb 9, 2005 (UTC)
Could any of you list some sources? Like Encyclopedia Britannica, and others? My gut feeling is that the baltic states are not northern europe, (but eastern europe), but I can live with it either way. Depending on the majority and the prestige of the sources, the baltics can be included, or listed under Additionally, two three other groups ... . In any case, Wikipedia describes what other sources states, and does NOT aim to generate a new view! – Chris 73 Talk
Wikipedia can and should express a neutral point of view and hence inform about different views. What if you included a paragraph about the discussion whether the baltics should be considered northern Europe or not? If you word it in such a way that both views come to the forefront of the section, that is certainly better than stating a POV or no NPOV at all. Inter 15:20, 9 Feb 2005 (UTC)
While Wikipedia should consider other sources and common English usage, what's more important is correctness, I think we are old and large enough to be an authoritative source of information, especially when the arguments can be proved by logic. The Baltic states _are_ part of Northern Europe and not part of Eastern Europe, due to the reasons above. Saying that "according to Britannica, XYZ is in Northern Europe, but Encarta disagrees, while Brockhaus claims that just XY are part of Northern Europe" is confusing and basically eliminates the need for Wikipedia as an information source. People then using Wikipedia for research wouldn't know how to interpret the information. Rather, we should say this: we should include the Baltic states if there is more reason to include them than not - therefore, it is correct to include them. Now if you can prove to me why they shouldn't be included, I shall accept. But as long as you use the weak argument of "well, not all sources say they're Northern Europe, we'll just wash our hands and exclude them", you're not gaining anything. You're not proving that something's correct, just that it's commonly used. There's a big difference.
As to including a paragraph to explain, that would be fine. There already is one (remark #2), but we could expand it. Something like that already exists at Eastern Europe, where the old definition is explained in more detail.
After this, I hope we move on to a real, logical argument rather than just reverting based on what other sources say. I won't revert back for now, but please don't use this as an opportunity to just "keep quiet". If you don't want the Baltic states included, what's the actual logical reason? Ronline 08:12, 10 Feb 2005 (UTC)
It is certainly very exaggerated to say that the Baltic states are culturally Scandinavian countries. Besides, there are big differences between them.
Lithuania is culturally a Catholic Central European country and has strong cultural ties to Poland. It definitely isn't a Nordic country.
Estonia has much Nordic in it and is the culturally closest from the three Baltic states to the Scandinavian countries. Finland used to be a Baltic state but now it has shifted to the Scandinavian countries. Possibly the same will happen to Estonia. The difference, however, is that there is no general knowledge of Scandinavian languages in Estonia as there is in Finland, and there is much less Swedish influence in Estonia than in Finland. The Estonian culture (except folklore) is predominantly a product of German culture, other influences are minor. Besides, Estonia is tied to Finland by linguistic closeness creating a certain feeling of unity. Russian culture has influenced Estonia quite little, except in the localities of compact ethnic Russian settlement. You can see a big Orthodox cathedral next to the Parliament but there are few Estonian orthodox people. The south-east corner of Estonia is an exception as it was permanently under Russia until the twentieth century. Some politicians (including Toomas Hendrik Ilves) have uttered opinions that Estonia should identify itself as a Nordic or Scandinavian country, not as Baltic state.
Latvia is half like Estonia (except that its language is not related to Estonian and Finnish) and half like Lithuania.
The Nordic Council considers expanding to the Baltic States. If this happens its working language will be English. As to now it uses Swedish, Danish and Norwegian that are mutually understandable. Andres 09:13, 10 Feb 2005 (UTC)
OK, there are two points I wish to make here. Firstly, there is a difference between the Nordic countries and Northern Europe. The Nordic countries are what we basically know, wrongly, as Scandinavia - Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Iceland. Of course, Scandinavia is Norway, Sweden and Denmark only, but the Nordic countries is the term used for the Nordic Council countries. Northern Europe, however, is a broader term, which also includes the Baltic states. We don't have to prove that the Baltic states are Scandinavian, which they can never be, all we can say is that they have been influenced by the Nordic region. Estonia is of course of Northern European country. There is no doubt to that. Latvia is also, mainly due to many common traditions with the rest of Northern Europe. I don't think we can exclude Lithuania, then, especially since it is, arguably, closer to Northern Europe than to Central Europe, in language and a lot of its fundamental culture (excluding Polish influences). The second think I wish to say is this: when including countries in regions, we have to find the best fit. There are no less than four regions in which to include the Baltic states, but we have to choose the best one. Basically, our choices are:
  • Central Europe - a poor choice, since Slovenia and Estonia are not at all alike. Perhaps Lithuania would fit in easier, but Estonia, for example, is too far north-east to be classified with Central Europe. The Baltic states would be geographical outliers if placed in Central Europe. I suppose that there may be a cultural link to Central Europe via Germany, but there is no link to Slavic Central Europe.
  • Eastern Europe - a better, but still poor, choice. Basically, Estonia is NOT Eastern European because culturally it is _very_ different, and it simply can't be lumped together with Moldova and Belarus, or Ukraine and Russia. The same goes for the other Baltic states - they face different issues to the countries presently included in Eastern Europe.
  • Northeastern Europe - basically, the formation of a new region similar to Southeastern Europe. This would be OK, just that the Baltic states are too small and with too small population to currently require the formation of a new region for them. They _have_ to be merged into another region.
  • Northern Europe - the best choice. These countries are closest culturally to Northern Europe, they are northern in geography, they are northern in their outlook, therefore this is their best fit.
The other issue is this: why is all this fuss going on when the article always included the Baltic states as a part of Northern Europe. I think people just got worked up over the map featuring the Baltic states, but what's the problem when even now, the article states:
Northern Europe is a name for the northern part of the European continent. At different times this region has been defined differently but today it is generally seen to include:
  • the Nordic countries, i.e. Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland and Iceland.
  • the Baltic States, i.e. Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania
  • the British Isles, which includes the United Kingdom and Ireland
  • others, e.g. Northern Russia, Northern Germany, Northern Poland, and The Netherlands
I removed the British Isles because it is wrong to include them there, and we also can't include fragments of countries. Therefore, what's the argument? I didn't significantly "alter" the structure of this region. By the way, I will revert back tomorrow if there are no new replies from the people who originally reverted my edits (Ruhrjung, etc). Ronline 08:18, 11 Feb 2005 (UTC)
Your whole premise, that northern, western, eastern, etc. Europe have precise and mutually exclusive definitions, is fundamentally flawed. For instance, you consider it self-evident to exclude the British Isles from northern Europe; I am British and do not sse this as anything like as clear cut; for instance, this weeks's edition of the Evening Standard's Homes and Property section talked about a new shop in London as being its owner' "first branch in northern Europe". Susvolans (pigs can fly) 18:01, 11 Feb 2005 (UTC)
So then what would be your scenario? To make one of those maps full of hashed lines signifying countries which are part of more than one region? That simply wouldn't work. We need to establish, based on concensus, politicial boundaries for these regions so that we can then analyse them statistically, etc. There are some people that believe the UK is in Northern Europe, just how there are some that believe that Croatia is in Central Europe, for example. I am not against sorting out controversies in the article, since Wikipedia is meant to be NPOV, but at the same time highlight multiple points-of-view (this is apparently the official policy). What I propose that we have for the regions is this: for statistical/mapping purposes, a precise set of countries which would comprise the "current definition" or "compact definition". Then, we could also say, as I did in my Northern Europe article, "this region may also include:" and then we list the UK, Northern Germany, etc. We could also explain the basis for including each. For example, "while the UK is usually considered Western Europe, due to its historical and political ties to the region, it is sometimes considered Northern Europe because of its geographical position and also because it has some ethnic ties with the Nordic countries", or something like that. I'm totally in favour of explaining to people the situation from multiple points of view. What we need though, it to also form some "clear-cut" versions of the regions, for statistical and mapping purposes. That's why I advocate including only the Nordic countries and the Baltic states in the region on the map, and then listing "other possible countries" and explaining why they should/shouldn't be included. If we don't include the Baltic states in Northern Europe, they will have to be included in another region for statistical/mapping purposes. Just see Regions of Europe - they have "clear-cut" maps for regions, otherwise it will all be just too confusing. By the way, the Baltics are mentioned in Eastern Europe additionally, which is OK, but their main mention should be in Northern Europe, just how the UK should be given a mention that it is sometimes included in Northern Europe, but it should be listed as a core country in Western Europe, explaining why this is so. Finally, I'm reverting now, since no-one has given any argument as to why the Baltic states shouldn't be included. Ronline 22:21, 11 Feb 2005 (UTC)
Europe and Regions of Europe are surely perceived as flawed by not so few Wikipedians. It's also astonishing that you don't see the arguments given to you - compare what Andres writes above on the Baltic states. Most importantly, however, is that you try to suppress other points of views than your own, which is not how things are supposed to be at Wikipedia. You better not revert.
--Ruhrjung 22:40, Feb 11, 2005 (UTC)
I am not trying to supress anyone's point of view. My version of the article is the most inclusive version because it states that the UK and Northern Germany, etc may also be included, while also including the Baltic states and the Nordic countries in the core version. "you don't see the arguments given to you" - Ruhrjung, no arguments have yet been given to me as to why the Baltic states should not be included. Andres advocated the inclusion of Estonia, as well as to an extent Latvia, but not Lithuania. So are we fighting here over Lithuania? The fact is that we can continue to squabble over where to include the Baltics, but Northern Europe is the best place for them. Andres misinterpreted Northern Europe as being the Nordic countries. Again, I am not trying to supress anyone's point of view. Also, you just don't seem to understand the following thing: the Baltic states were part of the article even before my edits. I wasn't the one to add them there. All I did was create a map and some statistics which included them as part of the region, but excluded UK & Ireland because it was not right putting it there. So what you're saying now is that the Baltic states shouldn't be included - well, guess what, the version that you keep on reverting to states this:
Northern Europe is a name for the northern part of the European continent. At different times this region has been defined differently but today it is generally seen to include:
   * the Nordic countries, i.e. Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland and Iceland.
   * the Baltic States, i.e. Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania
   * the British Isles, which includes the United Kingdom and Ireland
   * others, e.g. Northern Russia, Northern Germany, Northern Poland, and The Netherlands
The Baltic states are included equal to the Nordic countries. If you're so anti-Baltic-states-being-in-Northern-Europe, then delete them out. Why is my version of the page any less inclusive, more arrogant or flawed than the present version? As to "you better not revert", I believe I have as much of a right as you to make changes to the page, so please don't impose conditions like that. Ronline 22:55, 11 Feb 2005 (UTC)
You insist on inserting maps and statistic figures for "regions" defined according to your fancy, despite the critique you repeatedly have received here. Thereby you make Wikipedia giving the impression that these deliminations are somehow right and other understandings are wrong. This is not in any way acceptable. I revert your changes. --Johan Magnus 13:22, 15 Feb 2005 (UTC)
You are the one that keeps on insisting that my definitions of regions are subjective and personal. That is not the case - in fact, I have based my maps and stats on what were the regional definitions already in the article. In Central Europe, for example, there was already a list of countries in the region and a map. All I did was add some stats, which are very useful. For Southern Europe, there were already definitions - again, I created a map and made some stats. It is really on Northern Europe where I altered the "definition" a little bit by taking out UK & Ireland, which I think don't belong in Northern Europe, and which I have a significant case for including in Western Europe. We argued about including the Baltic states, but the fact is that they were already listed as an integral part of Northern Europe, so I didn't show any personal or political bias by including them in the map/stats - I only put what was there. I also support that we give more extended definitions of regions saying "while these countries are generally seen to nearly always be in xx region, yy can also be included because..." I am not saying therefore that my understanding is better than others. I have used what was already in the article, so it is not my bias, and then I accepted other understandings, saying that they should also be included in the article (such as, why the UK & Ireland are sometimes included in Northern Europe). Therefore, I don't see a need to revert the useful stats and the maps which give reasonably correct definitions of "core" countries of a particular region. Ronline 06:00, 17 Feb 2005 (UTC)

United Kingdom, Ireland and Scotland[edit]

In my mind United Kingdom as a whole is not part of Northern Europe.
United Kingdom should be examined as a union of three nations: Scotland, England and Wales. Of these Scotland is clearly part of Northern Europe with ties to North Sea and Scandinavia. England however has always been tied with Western Europe especially Normandy and France. Dividing line is the English-Scottish border. Ireland and Wales also have some Nordic influence, but so does Normandy.

As a french person I always thought all UK obviously as part of Northern Europe. Geographically (this islands are clearly in the Northern half of Europe), culturally (mostly speaking a germanic language and being overwhelmingly of protestant majority) and climatically (northern oceanic climate). What UK is not is "Nordic" or "scandinavian", which are more restritive terms. UK being part of Northern Europe is somthing that is share by all people in France and most official publications include it with other northern European countries. It could be the same for Germany and Austria, which most people in France consider to be be a northern European country. But in the case of south Germany and Austria it is more limited to a linguistic and cultural association to the other Germanic countries than to a pure geographical definition. Even if, if we cut Europe in 2 halfs the division will be passing over the alps, putting all Germany and Austria in Northern Europe, even some parts of the northern part of France would be situated in the northern half of Europe.

I agree. The UK is part of Northern Europe. We are geographically in Northern Europe as we are in line with Denmark (which is in Northern Europe. Out of the regions (The country is the UK), England is the most Northern European cultrally, due to it's ancestors coming from Denmark and to a lesser extent Northern Germany. Our culture is not Western European (This is not a slight on that culture) and neither is it's Geography. It is not Scandinavian, though it's culture is similar (I speak from experience here). I am from the UK and I am proud of being from Northern Europe, I also don't know who doesn't think that the UK is in Northern Europe. SO it needs a source in the article by the way. - Cnut

I agree with the two people above and I also believe the official UN region of Northern Europe includes the UK. I think it has nothing to do with culture as the USA, Australia and Canada have very similar cutlure to UK and they are not Nothern European. It is down to Geography with the English Channel being the dividing line below.

The map[edit]

Am I colour blind? The Northern European countries are listed as purple, aren't they?

well the map is incomprehensible in any case. jnestorius(talk) 01:39, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

Poll: Ireland article titles[edit]

A poll is currently underway to determine the rendition of the island, nation-state, and disambiguation articles/titles for Ireland in Wp. Please weigh in! E Pluribus Anthony | talk | 08:32, 11 February 2006 (UTC)

Personally, I think we British are in Northern Europe. English is related to their languages, we are as far north as Denmark and Norway, the UN considers us to be part of Northern Europe. Culturally in many countries such as France, USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand we are considered Northern European.

Hello, I am a writer for a travel and culture website on Northern Europe. I update my site 1 - 2 times per week with articles, blog entries, and discussions on traveling to Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, and Iceland, and about aspects of these countries' culture. My readers are those planning trips to the region, armchair travelers, and those interested in learning about the people/culture. Would you be able to put a link to my site in the Related Sites section? It is (removed link indentified as spam Doc15071969 21:29, 10 March 2007 (UTC) ) Thank you.

British Isles[edit]

Wouldn't it make more sense that the island of Great Britain is part of Northern Europe whereas the island of Ireland is part of Western Europe? This would also fit with England and Scotland being more Protestant and Ireland being more Catholic. Certainly Scotland belongs in Northern Europe, and England would usually be considered to have more Nordic than Latin heritage.

Well the UK has a lot of Latin influence, with the English containing far more Latin content that other Germanic languages such as German, Dutch or Swedish. From a geographical point of view, England is as far north as the Neatherlands or Poland. I actually think the UK as a whole is more Western Europe than Northern Europe, as it is has less in common with Scandinavia than say the Neatherlands (As for the protestant faith, that comes from the kingdom of Saxony in present day Germany). The definition of the term is messy. Many consider northern Germany, Belgium or England to be northern Europe, others don't. There is no definite answer and this article does quite frankly lack sufficient references. SignaturebrendelNow under review! 07:27, 15 November 2006 (UTC)

I'm surprised by the question. on almost all points the UK is clearly northern European. first of course geography; germanic language, protestant majority, etc. What UK is not is Scandinavian, but it is north European as Netherlands or northern Germany are, even more.

We are talking about geography not culture! But it can be argued of all the Nations in the British Isles, Scotland and Ireland have the most Nordic links. This can be seen especially in the Gaelic Language with many words/phrases common to both and the ethnic make-up ie. Norse ancestry.

How can you possibly say Ireland and Scotland have more links to Nordic countries than England? Firstly the Anglo-Saxons were from Denmark (part of which, Slesvig/Schleswig is now German), dynastic links with Sweden are evidenced (i.e compare Sutton Hoo with Vendel and Valsgarde), the Normans were Scandinavians (Danes or Norwegians, probably a mixture of the two) who happened to speak French due to being under Frankish vassalage, AND during a large part of the Viking Age most of England was part of (the Danelaw) and heavily colonised by Denmark (so much so that the peoples north of the Thames were often referred to as Anglo-Danes), then you have the Norwegian colonisation and dominion over the Kingdom of Jorvik. Secondly the native ancestral tongue and culture is Germanic (English), whereas the Scots and Irish have naturally Celtic cultures and languages with Germanic imposed on them. It's historically protestant, unlike Ireland. Geographically parts of England are further north than Denmark and unlike Denmark there is no landbridge to Western or Central Europe. So there is really no reason for England to be considered 'less Northern'. BodvarBjarki (talk) 10:55, 12 December 2009 (UTC)

First of course, geography? If you look at the geography of the British Isles, especially Ireland, Wales, and England (that is nearly all of it), what does it really have in common with, for example, that of Scandinavia proper? Frankly, I can't think of much. Germanic language? The English language, no doubt, has a Germanic substrate, and is consequently classified as a Western Germanic language. In fact though, modern English clearly is a blend of the Germanic and Romance (as well as Celtic!) languages it developed from. Considering your argumentation, this has to be seen as a crucial point, since nothing of that sort holds for the other Germanic languages that are mostly spoken in, what is today, the real Northern Europe. Protestant majority? What, in Ireland? Obviously not. Did you mean the UK then? Well, even that is history. Inform yourself, you'll easily find out that as of today there are more people of Roman Catholic faith in the UK, than all protestants combined, and mind you, that we already counted the Anglicans as protestant then.. something which cannot at all be taken for granted! Because traditionally, most Anglicans would consider themselves rather as Catholic, only not as Roman Catholic--at any rate, there's hardly an equivalent for that in what is the real Northern Europe. As this is predominantly Lutheran as pertains confession. So, and the user above means the fact of the inexistance of a landbridge to Continental Europe, where alternatively there is this "Channel" which, some fitness assumed, you might actually cross by swimming (well, or by train) is in effect enough to render the UK a part of Northern Europe? I'm sure.. he was joking. As is this article. Zero Thrust (talk) 21:19, 26 September 2011 (UTC)

Actually you will find that the people of England once spoke Celtic languages. The Germanic tongues came from migrating Germanic tribes just as they did in Scotland and Ireland. If you take a look at the Scots language you will see that in many ways Scots is far more similair to Scandinavian tongues than English is. I would disagree that Ireland is more Norse than England however Scotland would be a contender were it even a contest. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:44, 11 October 2011 (UTC)

Northern Europe is a geographic term. Not a cultural sphere. Scotland is plainly in Northern Europe, you only need to take a look at a map to see that. While England could be either and Wales and Ireland should probably be merged into the Western Europe category. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:30, 12 October 2011 (UTC)

Are there people who actually believe Scotland is for sure in Northern Europe but aren't sure if England and Wales are? That's just bizarre to me. England has as much Scandinavian influence as Scotland, and the entire island of Great Britain is literally north of most of Europe.

Misleading title[edit]

The title of this article should really be something along the lines of Northern Europe in UN statistics (and similar changes made to the Southern, Western, and Eastern pages). The particular boundaries of this definition have no relevance outside that very limited field, and may be misconstrued to give offence to natives of certain countries. 06:57, 10 February 2007 (UTC)


Remarks section

Unless these statements are attributed to some reliable and verifiable source (or corrected), I will be removing un-sourced and, IMO, clearly false information (probably original research), and namely:

"The contextual term the Baltic States came into common usage during the Cold War; within the context of speaking about the Soviet Union, or about the various Soviet Republics that made up the Soviet Union. The term the "Baltic States," or the "Baltic Republics," referred to the Soviet Republics that were on the Baltic--Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania (..)", and all reasoning proceeding from these assertions.

"Baltic States" has been in use well before World War II. While some articles there do contain factual inaccuracies and misspellings of names, Time Magazine archives are illustrative (also of interest may be that some articles make distinction between Baltic states and Eastern European states; my emphasis):

  1. "This large production is intended to supply all the Scandinavian countries and the new Baltic States." – "Ubiquitous Ford", Saturday, May. 19, 1923
  2. "These are: Albert Bushnell Hart (Harvard) the U. S. and Canada; Harry T. Collings (Pennsylvania) South America; Arthur Lyon Cross (Michigan) the British Empire; Richard Heath Dabney (Virginia) Minor European States; William Stearns Davis (Minnesota) France and Belgium; Charles W. Hackett (Texas) Mexico and Central America; Albert How Lybyer (Illinois) Turkey and the Near East; Frederic A. Ogg (Wisconsin) Eastern Europe and the Balkans; Alexander Petrunkevitch (Yale) Russia and the Baltic States; William R. Shepherd (Columbia) Germany and Austria; Lily Ross Taylor (Vassar) Italy; Payson J. Treat (Stanford) the Far East and Africa." – Contemporary History, Monday, Nov. 12, 1923
  3. "It was stated that the principal agendum was the formation of a definite entente among the Baltic States to safeguard the territorial and political independence of each and to provide for common action in case of armed aggression." "Baltic League", Monday, Jun. 02, 1924
  4. "More recently he visited the Baltic States and Poland for The New York Evening Post, and went to Russia two years ago for the New York Herald Tribune." to "Ruhl's Report", Monday, Oct. 05, 1925
  5. "Q.—Is Russia attempting to negotiate "Locarno" agreements with the Baltic States on the one hand and the Eastern European States on the other?" – "Questions & Answers", Monday, Dec. 28, 1925
  6. "What was in the air was a Franco-Russian proposal that interlocking peace pacts should be signed between all the Baltic States and with Russia, Germany, France and Poland." – "Briand's Miracle", Monday, Dec. 19, 1927
  7. "He found official Latvia strongly disposed to favor the Franco-British project of a Baltic state cordon dividing Russia and Germany." – "Beer Diplomacy", Monday, Mar. 28, 1927
  8. "One thing the Big Three Delegations from the Continent not only had in common but also shared with the Delegations of Poland, Czechoslovakia, Austria, Hungary, Jugoslavia, Rumania and the Baltic states: All stood pledged to fight any move toward price raising by world monetary devaluation or inflation." – "The World Confers", Monday, Jun. 19, 1933
  9. "Dr. Rosenberg helped organize the "League of the Baltic Brotherhood" to unite the Baltic states under Nazi guidance." – "Das Baltikum", Monday, May. 28, 1934
  10. "Ambassador to Italy Breckinridge Long (1904) and Minister to the Baltic States John Van Antwerp MacMurray (1902) head a list of some 55 Princeton consuls and vice consuls." – "Princeton & Patriotism", Monday, Jun. 18, 1934
  11. "Sole exception is the dignified little Baltic State of Estonia." – "After Socrates", Monday, Sep. 02, 1935

Doc15071969 21:29, 10 March 2007 (UTC)

Northern European/Nordic/Scandinavian[edit]

I feel people are confusing all three of these terms, all of which are, in reality, quite different. Northern Europe is purely a geographical area. That said, as a Brit, I do feel more of a Northern European culturally, along with the Scandinavians than a Western European with the French. This is not out of dislike for French or continental Europeans (a French person on here has echoed these sentiments already), also the UN agrees with me. As for trying to break up the British Isles in these definitions, I will say whatever links British nations have with Scandinavia or the continent, they have more links between one another. Sorry nationalists and anglophobes.

Scandinavia is Norway, Sweden & Denmark. This is a cultural and geographic designation. Simple. I think it's almost undebatable that Scandinavia is Northern Europe.

The Nordic Countries are the countries in the Nordic Council. Again, the council was unofficially built on Scandinavism, but with Finland and Iceland in it and with possible newcomers being admitted, it's not a cultural designation, though it is obviously Scandinavian-centric. If expansion does occur, this fact will become more obvious. Ultimately though, if the country is not in the Nordic Council, it's quite simply not a Nordic Country, even if it's interested in joining. If Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania do eventually join, they will be Nordic Countries, but not before the day they are admitted. I believe that all these countries are Northern Europe, as does the UN.

I feel very surprised that a lot of people here seem to oppose "western Europe" and "northern Europe" or "southern Europe". These concepts are not exclusive, at least not in a french point of view. western Europe include very different countries such as both Portugal and Norway. Britain is, from my point of view a north European country AND a western European country. The same way France is a western European country AND a southern European country. On is north-western, the other south-western.

You are right but West versus East has (since the last century) been about what side of the (former) iron curtain you live. This meant that Finland was usually considered a western European and also Scandinavian rather than Baltic, with Czechoslovakia being classed as east,despite the former being being further east than the latter. Of course, Britain is in North West Europe, and thus this is what it should say in it's wiki article. Scandinavians are just north, Finland etc are North East. The article should ignore geopolitics and focus on official definition, such as that of the UN and EU, whilst recognising that there is no concrete consensus and that it ultimately depends on who you ask. ~~

I agree that the UK is socially more similar to the Netherlands than to actual Nordic countries however it is geographically north of the majority of the landmass people consider mainland-europe (in the North Sea) and is also inline/more northen than Denmark. England especially is also linked ethnically with Angles, Saxons, Normans and Vikings of northern Europe. The UK shares relgious beliefs such as protestantism and disbelief in gods. I live in the UK and as mentioned somewhere above businesses and organisations here often advertise that they are "The largest or only one in Northern Europe etc". I think the UK is in both Western and Northern Europe but if it has to be in one I agree with the UN on the Northern Classification. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:54, 2 February 2008 (UTC)

Northern Europe[edit]

Sorry, but this talk page is a nonsense. For future reference, Northern Europe doesn't mean 'Aryan' or 'Nordic', it means 'Northern' and 'Europe'. There is an article describing the Nordic countries. Britain and Ireland are in Northern Europe and Western Europe irrespective of linguistics, culture or any other consideration. Izzedine (talk) 08:55, 22 April 2009 (UTC)

Benelux countries in Northern Europe?[edit]

Why are the three Benelux countries included in the area/population/population density table? According to the United Nations (or any other definition given in the article), they belong to Western Europe. --Vihelik (talk) 22:46, 20 August 2010 (UTC)

That because the concept of western Europe is much more unclear than northern Europe. The UNO classification of "western Europe" is quite arbitrary, not based on geography (Iberia and British isles should be included in that sense); not based on cultural or linguistic groups (some countries are romance, other germanic; some are catholic, other protestant); not based on politics (Spain, Portugal and Italy are as much democracies, involved in the EU, with Euro currency, etc than can be Netherlands or Germany). In fact I think the those definitions of "western Europe" are a sort of way of grouping countries that do not fit in the most restrictive definitions of northern or southern Europe: Germany or Benelux are northern European but not as much than Scandinavia; so some definitions prefer to lump them in "western Europe" grouping; the same way, France is in big part southern European; and part of romance cultures of south-western Europe; but because of its northern regions that doesn't have mediterranean or southern European climates many definitions exclude the whole of it of southern Europe; and lump it in the restricted "western Europe" group. Actually for most people, in use western Europe isn't that selective: it include all the western half of Europe; from Portugal to Norway. Inside this "western Europe" you'll find countries that are part of northern Europe (or north-western to be more precise) and countries that are part of southern Europe (or south-western). being considered "western" do not exclude for being fully northern or southern European; it just exclude from being "eastern".

In the case of Benelux; this area is usually seen as both part of the concept of western Europe and the concept of northern Europe. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:16, 8 September 2010 (UTC)

"France is in big part southern European; and part of romance cultures of south-western Europe"
France is certainly not "in big part" a southern european country. And there is not any cultural "south-western Europe", excepted in your imagination.
"but because of its northern regions that doesn't have mediterranean or southern European climates many definitions exclude the whole of it of southern Europe"
Actually, even southern France has not a southern european climate. Only a thin southeastern fringe has a Mediterranean climate.-- (talk) 17:57, 18 October 2011 (UTC)
There is clearly a disparity between the map and the definition on one hand, and the statistics table on the other. Since the aberration seems to be in the table, it needs to be fixed.--Vihelik (talk) 23:33, 9 September 2010 (UTC)
Oops, moot point. The article has been cleaned up.--Vihelik (talk) 23:41, 9 September 2010 (UTC)


Benelux countries and Northern Germany are part of northern Europe too. As much as UK, even if they are not classified as such by the UN. (UN classification is made for purely administrative reasons, and is not supposed to reflect the geographical or cultural limits of Europe. Geographically all Benelux and northern Germany are in northern Europe; on a cultural point of view all of Germany is, and also German-speaking Switzerland and Austria. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:23, 28 December 2010 (UTC)

Geographically and culturally Baltic States (at least Lithuania and Latvia) is at Central Europe. Open any geography book in Lithuania not only that UN map. Hugo.arg (talk) 21:31, 30 August 2011 (UTC)
Geographically? There are only three capital cities in Europe (out of 50 total) that lie on a more northerly latitude than Tallinn in Estonia: Helsinki, Oslo, and Reykjavík. As for Riga in Latvia, add Tallinn and Stockholm. If Estonia and Latvia are Central Europe, where would then one place Denmark?
Culturally? Estonia is a mostly Lutheran country and Latvia is 2/3 Lutheran. All predominantly Lutheran countries in Europe lie north of the Baltic Sea. Whereas the Catholic Lithuania may indeed belong to Central Europe after its centuries-long association with Poland, all of Estonia and the northern half of Latvia have hundreds of years been integral parts of Swedish and/or Danish empires. --Vihelik (talk) 21:42, 18 October 2011 (UTC)

What's with rejecting the Baltic states as Eastern Europe?[edit]

The CIA has them located in Eastern Europe [1] and the British media – bear in mind this is the English Wiki – says they're Eastern European too [2]. Just because you don't like being associated with Russia et al, it doesn't mean you can dismiss the fact you're from the East. VEOonefive 12:13, 7 May 2012 (UTC)

There's nothing with it, it's just not up to you. Yes, in the British media they are often included in the East. However, this characterization has more to do with recent political history than geography or culture. Take, for example, Tallinn, the capital of Estonia. It lies only 50 miles from Helsinki on the north-south (not east-west) axis. Of the 50 capitals in Europe, only 3 (Helsinki, Oslo, and Reykjavik) are north of Tallinn and the whole country of Denmark lies to the south of Estonia. --Vihelik (talk) 12:48, 7 May 2012 (UTC)


The population figures do not add up (as of 9 March 2013). The total average of population density estimates is out of date since individual countries have had their population estimates updated. --Vihelik (talk) 15:39, 9 March 2013 (UTC)


There needs to be a climate section because that would be really helpful. There are no other articles on climate in Northern Europe. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2602:306:3110:A5B0:3C1F:1C30:EB7E:4D65 (talk) 18:20, 13 December 2015 (UTC)