STOCKHOLM Stockholm is the capital city of Sweden and also the biggest city of the country. It is called “Green City” because it got the Euopean Green Capital award for achieving high enviromental standards. Stockholm has a lot of museums, like the Royal Palace, and it has also a big zoo called “Skansen”. Sweden is a kingdom, whose centre is in Stockholm, and the name of the parliament is Riksdag. The city has a population of 1,25 milion in the urban area and 2 million in the metropolitan area. It is the centre of culture, media, politics and economy.
Stockholm is situated on 14 islands on the south-central east coast of Sweden, where Lake Malaren meets the Baltic Sea. Over the 30% of the city is made of waterways and so it's called “Venice of the North”. Because of the high northerly latitude, Stockholm has 18 hours of daylight around midsummer and only 6 hours in late December. It has a mild weather compared to other locations at similar latitude: only -15°C in winter, to 20-22°C in summer. The first time when Stockholm was mentioned was in 1252. The name of the city is made of two words: stock and holm. Stock means fortification and holm means islet.
Stockholm in winter
Flag of Sweden History of Swedish Flag: The Swedish flag is a Scandinavian cross,the cross is yellow and the backround is blue and the colurs are so belived to have been inspired by the present Coat of arms of Sweden of 1442.Blue and yellow have been used as Swedish colours at least since king Magnus Birgersson's royal coat of arms of 1275. But the Mythology tells that: According to the mythology, the 12th century Swedish king Eric the Holy saw a golden cross in the sky as he landed in Finland during the First Swedish Crusadein 1157. Seeing this as a sign from God he adopted the golden cross against a blue background as his banner. (The cross then became yellow, to make it easier and cheaper to make) and it has also been suggested that the Swedish flag might have been a resistance flag against the Danish Flag, which is red with a white cross, and which has been known since 1219.
SWEDEN FOOD Swedish food tends to be practical and sustaining but it depends on where you are because there are many regional differences. In the far North Sweden they eat reindeer and other game dishes. Fresh vegetables play a larger role in the South of Sweden. Many traditional disches are simple to make; they have contrasting flavours such as the traditional dish of meatballs and gravy with tart, pungent lingonberry jam. Swedish Cuisine is different from that of its neighbours in Norway and Finland because the dishes are often more sweetened. In the last few decades immigrants from all over the world have enriched Swedish food culture with many tasty dishes.
USEFUL PHRASES IN SWEDISH Swedish is the national language of Sweden. It is an Indo-European language belonging to the North Germanic branch of the Germanic languages. It is spoken by 10 million people. There are many dialects. Sweden is a musical language and some words are similar to German and English, because they are all German languages. These are the most useful phrases in Sweden in the spoken language: ● Hello – Hej. ● Bye – Hejdå. ● My name is… - Jag heter… ● How are you? – Hur mår du? ● What’s up? – Vad gör du? ● I am hungry – Jag är hungrig. ● How old are you? - Hur gammal är du? ● I am ... years old. - Jag är ... år gammal. ● Where do you live? - Vart bor du? If you go to Sweden, these phrases might help you.
Lucia Lucia Day is a famous festival, which is celebrated on 13th December. This festival is based on an old legend: a Sicilian young girl called Lucia, who wanted to devote her life to God, died because she was denounced like a cristian. The origins of this festival are Italian, but after it will also win a lots of approbation in other countries, especially in Sweden. At this festival people usually celebrate preparing biscuits, dressing up and singing the traditional Luciaâ€™s song. Moreover, every year there is the choice of a girl, whoâ€™s is disguised herself as Lucia and who will represent Sweden. In fact, she will go to Siracusa (the city where Lucia was born and is the patroness) to take part in the usual procession.
Here is Saint Lucia: in this picture she has four eyes, because she is the sight protector.
This is the Saint Lucia's church in Siracusa.
Christmas in Sweden In Sweden the celebration of Christmas begins about four weeks before the 25th December with the Advent. Each Sunday during this period, a candle is lit on an Advent candlestick and so on the fourth Sunday there are four candles on it and this means that Christmas is beginning. The Christmas tree is decoreted with lights, festoons, stars and many other decorations. On Christmas Eve and on Christmas Day every family bake many desserts, like cakes, cookies and bread. But the traditional dessert after Christmas dinner consists of a rice pudding and a person of the family hides an almond into the pudding and who finds it, will be the next to marry the next year. As first meal there is always a ham and also sausages, meatballs... On Christmas Eve the children in Sweden look for gifts brought by Jultomten, a man who' s like a gnome and the real Santa Claus. He doesn't put the presents under the tree or into a stocking, he gives them directly to the children. On Christmas Day swedish people get up very early to go to the church at six or seven o'clock and attend a special church service, called julottan (Christmas-early-in the morning). Swedish people celebrate New Year's Eve going to a party or inviting some friends and waiting the twelve o'clock. At this time many fireworks are let off and people make a toast in champagne and wish each other happy new year. Christmas holidays end on 13th January (20th day Knut) where the Christmas tree is taken down.
Christmas in Sweden.
Here's a picture of Jultomten.
Easter in Sweden Next to Christmas and to Midsummer, Easter is the most important festival in Sweden. Many years ago, it was tought that in this period all witches went to Blakulla(the Blue mountain) to see the devil . A common Easter tradition includes egg painting. Moreover children dress up , they paint their face and go from house to house in the neighborhood asking for sweets in exchange of paintings. During Easter holidays, in every Swedish house, are common small branches and twigs of willow or birch, which are decorated with feathers and small decorations. For lunch and for dinner, on the Easter Day, families usually feast fish, salmon, eggs, potatoes and other kinds of food.
These kids are dressing up to celebrate Easter.
Some kids paint their eggs.
Midsummer's eve Midsummer's eve is one of the most popular festival day in Sweden and it rappresents the summer's solstice. Midsummer is an old pagan celebration, which starts during the Viking Era. In the beginning, it was celebrated on 23th and 24th June, but after (since 1953), it will be on the friday and saturday between 19th and 26th. During this festival, people usually erected a wooden pole called Maypole decorated with many different kinds of flowers and ribbons. It was a symbolic structure, which rappresented Mother Nature. People used to dance and sing around this pole and to have fun during this festival, but nowadays, people only have a great time grilling and singing.
People are dancing around the Maypole.
.Festivals in Italy!! It’s popular to travel to Italy. So why not take a plane to Italy and celebrate different events and festivals with them? But first you need to get information about the ceremonies the Italians celebrating and how it works a little bit, so you are prepared if you will go there. There are some festivals that are larger than other festivals in Italy. Some of the festivals I had described below are not important for some Italians and some festivals are very important for some of them. It depends on what you are interested in and how traditional you are. National Day June 2 is the Italian National Day, called Festa Della Repubblica. Why the Italians celebrate the National Day just that day is because in June 2, 1946, Italy became a republic. The Italians voted if they wanted to retain the monarchy or if they wanted to abolish the monarchy. The king had supported Mussolini, and that's why Italians did not want the monarchy more. So, June 2 is the National Day of Italy and now you know why. Labor Day Labor Day, in Italy, is a day when political parties of the left standing on the streets and protest against various causes that they have. This event happens in many countries in the world. The atmosphere is festive, but sometimes it can be too aggressive. There are many people on the streets because none works that day. So, be careful when you go to Italy on May 1. It’s holiday for the Italian workers! Liberation Day It’s a festival which is celebrated April 25. It’s a day to honor those persons who were killed during the World War II. That day, there are many people in the streets, around the country, to remember the dead. Epiphany It’s a festival which is celebrated January 6. They celebrate that day because it was the birth of Jesus, and it still celebrates in the Eastern Orthodox Church. The meaning of the holiday changed when the Catholic Church decided to celebrate Christmas on December 25.
Benafa, who is a Santa Claus-like figure old witch, give gifts to the children and when the children wakes up are the stockings filled with toys and candy. Then the family can buy more gifts. This happens at the end of the Christmas season. Ferragosto One of the most famous festivals is ferragosto. Italians celebrate Ferragosto in August 15 to celebrate the rise of Mary up to heaven where her son Jesus is. And they look after us who lives here on Earth. The Italians celebrating in the streets and they pray to Mary. Many people in the street that is to say. It is important to know that Ferragosto is the second largest festival in Italy. Rome's patron Saint June 29, the day that the Italians who live in Rome celebrate the Roman patron saints Petrus and Paulus. Itâ€™s only a day off in Rome. So, if you live in Rome, you have a day off that day. Petrus and Paulus are two important saints in Rome.
Sankt Paulus to the left and Petrus to the right. (Pictures from Wikipedia)
By Lina Flodins May 18, 2010
Do they have music in Italy? Here in Sweden we listen to Music that comes from USA, England and Scandinavia. But how about the other countries in Europe? What kind of music are they making? Italy for example. What do we know about their music?
Eros Ramazzotti The most famous Italian singer is Eros Rammazzotti. He is probably the only one in the Italian music world that is not an opera singer. He has won a lot of prices for his music and he has also done a well-known duet with Tina Turner. They sang a song cold “Cosa del la vida” and it became quite famous.
Luciano Pavarotti Italy is famous for their great opera singers and tenors. One of them was Luciano Pavarotti. Unfortunately he died in September 2006, but his voice will continued to be one of the worlds greatest and biggest. Meanwhile Pavarotti was alive he worked at the biggest operas around Europe and he became very famous when he sang in the group “The three tenors”.
My conclusion is that Italy has a big music culture and a lot of great groups and singers. Probably more then I have time to write about, so if you want to check them out Google it. But I warn you, they not sing in English so much and that is probably why we not know so much about their music.
Eros Ramazzotti Pavarotti
Written by: Beatrice Grenard MP1A
Bad history for rock festival. This summer some of the biggest rock bands in the worlds will meet up in Venice, Italy to one of the biggest festivals, the Heineken Jammin´festival. And for four days people from all of Italy, Europe and maybe even the world will enjoy such bands as Aerosmith, Green day and Wolfmother in Mestre, Parco San Giuliano. Before the ten year anniversary 2007 the festival was in Imola Autodrome, but later changed to Mestre. A one day pass costs 50 Euros, and for all days it costs 160 Euros. The days the festival takes place from 3rd to 6th July 2010. The festival brings hundreds of thousands of people and has done so since it started in 1998. A lot of different people from all over the world come to watch such different bands in the rock scene that comes this year. They should all just hope History don´t repeat it self and a disaster happens like it did in June 15 2007, when a Tornado hits the festival and six steel towers that was supporting the PA system collapsed and 25 people were badly injured and a lot of equipment was also damaged and sadly the organizers had to cancel bands like Pearl jam, linkon park and the killers. Some people said it was the worst weather they had ever seen. And Chairs and tables were blowing around the site. Later the Police took control of the situation and cancelled the festival. The lead singer in the band le Mani said, “People were just running for cover," he said. "It looked like hell, but it's Mother Nature so what can you do?" about the situation. By : Anton Sommer.
In Perugia Jazz comes to life. In Italy there are a lot of different music styles. One special is Jazz, and the main place to be if you like jazz is Umbria Jazz Festival. Some people say, the Italian equivalent to the New Orleans festival. Every July jazz comes to life in the town of Perugia to celebrate this wonderful music style. People have marched and danced through the city with a smile on their face. From all over Europe people have come to se artists like Elton John or BB king.
When there are no concerts to watch the jazz music don’t stop. In every café, bar, shop or even museum, jazz music stream out the speakers. You won’t get a quiet time and it will get you in an instant good mood. You will hear music from all over the world and it will have you humming around the streets of Perugia. Umbria Jazz has something to offer for everyone. Some performances are free and some cost. The performances start in the mid‐day and some goes off in the late night. Umbria jazz festival is one of the biggest in the world and huge artist have performed there. But it’s not just the big artists, it’s also the underground artist who may never even have performed in front of an audience. It sure is something for anyone with an interest of jazz and maybe for you to. Text: Evelina Johansson MP1A
Takida is a Swedish band and was born in Ange. In the group there are five components: Robert Petterson (he sings and plays piano), Tomas Wallin (he plays the guitar), Mattias Larsson (he plays the guitar), Fredrick Palsson (he plays the bass) and Kristoffer Soderstrom (he plays the drums). They make alternative rock.
Abba was a Swedish pop group. The group was formed in Stockholm in 1972 . The group is called this way from the names of it's four components: Anni-Frid â€œFridaâ€?,
Bjorn, Benny and Agnetha. They made pop, disco, Europop and Glam rock music.
Arvika is an annual festival which takes place three days in the middle of July, from Thursday to Saturday. Every years come a lot of people and singers too...the most famous bands that come to this festival, are Franz Ferdinand, Depeche Mode, Motorhead, Muse and so on !!!
Hultsfred is also an annual festival which during three days in the middle of June, from Thursday to Saturdayits attendance has increased
approximately 32,000 people in 2005.
FAMOUS PEOPLE Bjorn Borg, was born in Sweden In 1956. Heâ€™s one of the most famous people of all times when it comes to Tennis. He won a record five consecutive Wimbledon singles titles and four consecutive French Open singles titles, and is considered to be one of the greatest tennis players of all times. Borg won 41 percent of the Grand slam singles tournaments he entered and 89.8 percent of the Grand Slam singles matches he played. Both are Open era male records for an entire career. In addition, Borg's six French Open singles titles are an all-time record. He's one of the most talent's of tennis.