Alternate History

Sud-Hafsvaedaland Fylk (The Kalmar Union)

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— Subdivision of Vinland
Timeline: The Kalmar Union
Vinland S.Hafsvaedaland.svg
Flag of Sud-Hafsvaedaland
(and largest city)
Population 5,523,400 

Sud-Hafsvaedaland Fylk is one of Vinland's ten Fylkír and comprises the southern half of the Hafsvaedaland region. It has a population of around 5.5 million and its capital is Karantóborg; Vinland's second-largest city. The fylk is bordered by Nor-Hafsvaedaland Fylk to the north, Neshabek to the west, Erie to the south and Álengiamark to the east. It is however mostly surrounded by the lakes of the Fraeburt Votnum (hence the name Hafsvaedaland which is Early Vinlandic for 'land between the seas'), namely Karegnondí, Erie and Ontario Votnum.

Although home to native Leifian tribes for untold centuries Sud-Hafsvaedaland first entered into with the arrival of the Vinlandic Norse. From around the 1250s farming settlements began appearing along the Ontario shorefront. Backed by the Vinlandic earls, the Althing and the church the new farmers were protected by an ever-growing armed force and effectively enserfed unlike their free cousins in the east. Slowly the small tribes of the region were tamed by force or by trade and farms sprung up all over the area, linked by small market towns where the lords creamed off the taxes for their masters. Karantóborg was founded in 1270 and would soon overshadow its neighbours politically.

The soon booming populations of Sud-Hafsvaedaland would soon overshadow the rest of Vinland too. Intransigence amongst the earls to share their growing wealth would force Kristjana II to 'invade' the area, though her army would be turned in the end to extending Vinlandic rule to the 'Saukland'. The Peasant's Revolt (totally contained within Sud-Hafsvaedaland) of 1367-68 would almost derail the reign of Snaedis II. The religious persecutions of Freydis III's reign were mostly visited on the market towns of the fylk. Revolutionary theorists from St. Katrins and Logáyfir plotted the overthrow of the monarchy in the 1780s and again in the 1830s while other graduates of its schools and universities would provide the country's prime ministers (with a few exceptions) for three centuries.

The climate is the mildest out of all the fylkír and it has been Vinland's breadbasket almost since its first settlement. It is still mostly dependent on agriculture though the cities house a considerable manufacturing sector and a substantial railway network has spread throughout the fylk. Logáyfir is especially noted for its large steel industry, St. Katrins for its weaving mills and cloth, and Bárinnívesturlátt for its ship-building.

The region has much more of a 'melting pot' feeling than the other Fylkír as its original native tribes have been joined by other 'tribes' of Greenlanders, Icelanders and several waves of settlement from Europe as well as from Vinlanders internally. The local Fylkthing has long been very keen to lessen inter-racial tensions but in general wealth and political influence is evenly distributed between the component 'tribes'. Most politicians have no interest in altering that and are very sensitive to any laws which would benefit one group over another. Some 300,000 speak 'Hafsvaedish', a creole of Vinlandic and various strands of Algonquin languages, and it has been given official status within the fylk..

Sud-Hafsvaedaland contains over half of Vinland's population and as a result its Fylkthing is regarded as over-powerful or simply unwieldy, a situation that causes considerable heated debate. Ideally, reformers say, it should be split into smaller, more manageable Fylkír, but that risks upsetting the fine balance by creating Fylkír dominated by single ethnic groups such as the proposed 'Saukland'.

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