The Kingdom of Sweden (Known as the Swedish Empire, Swedish: Konungariket Sverige, Finnish: Ruotsin kuningaskunta, Russian: Короле́вство Шве́ция, Korolevstvo Shvetsiya) is a nation located in northernmost Europe. The Swedish Empire came into prominence after the Treaties of Dresden in 1726, and became the greatest power in Europe. During the late 19th Century, it became a welfare state and a constitutional monarchy, adopting a social democratic government after 1933.
Sweden was established as an independent kingdom after the union of the Geats, the Swedes and the Gutes in the early XII Century. After its formation, Sweden stayed isolated from the rest of the world. Therefore, feudalism never developed in Sweden, and the farmers never became subordinated to nobles in the way that happened in the rest of Europe. Serfdom and slavery were rare as well.
Sweden continued growing. In the XIII Century Finland was conquered by the Swedes. In the XVI Century, the House of Vasa rose to power as kings of Sweden. Sweden emerged as an international power after that. The next century was a period of growth for the Swedish Empire. Scania, the south of the Swedish peninsula, then controlled by Denmark, was conquered. Ingria, Karelia, Estonia, Livonia, Götland, Bremen and West Pomerania were taken as well.
The end of the Vasa Dynasty brought a mild decline to the Swedish Empire. In 1701, Tsar Peter I tried to take advantage of this in Russia's benefit, declaring war on Sweden. However, Sweden had a better military than estimated by the Russian Empire, and it also had the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth as its ally.
The Great Northern War ended after the Treaties of Dresden in 1725, in which Russia lost much of its northwestern areas in Sweden's favour, and Denmark-Norway ceased to exist with Norway, Iceland, Greenland, Faroe and Bornholm going to Sweden. Five years later, the Danish rump state was peacefully annexed by the Swedes.
Since Sweden did not have slavery or serfdom in a large level, and feudalism had not been implanted, the local populations were mostly happy with the conquest by Sweden. The Swedes did not force their language or religion on the natives, and they had as many rights as those in the mainland. The Swedish equalitary state, therefore, suffered almost no revolts.
This new economical and population base gave Sweden an important economic and military boom. The navy and military became one of the most important ones in the world. In 1735, Sweden acquired New England and New York from England for a few hundred thousand krona, after joint French, Polish and Swedish pressure for the United Kingdom to do so.
Sweden supported the unification of the Holy Roman Empire throughout the late XVIII Century, led by the Kingdom of Saxony, in union with Poland. Most of west Pomerania was given to Saxony in order to provide it of an early well-developed port. This greatly helped the Saxon economy, and, by 1785, Saxony had established the East German Confederation, which consisted of all the Holy Roman Empire excepting for the HRE states west of the Rhine and the Italian states, which left as their sovereignty felt threatened. This Confederation turned into the German Empire, with the rest of the HRE becoming puppet states of the Empire.
Through the XIX Century, Sweden experienced an industrial and political revolution. Its industrial capacities were vastly improved and developed. Sweden's agriculture-based economy began diversifying. This gave way to a much more educated lower class. In 1842, commoners in both Stockholm and Abo revolted against the absolutist crown. The crown was forced to reform into a constitutional monarchy, with a democratically elected parliament and several commoner government positions.
Sweden uses several different forms of administrative divisions. All of them have different grades of autonomy and political say on the government.
The first of the types are the Provinces (Swedish: landskap, Finnish: maakunta, Russian: 'Область, Oblast). The provinces have the highest levels of autonomy and political say, as they are fully parts of the Swedish government. They are led by both the crown-elected Governor and the elected Prime Minister. The provinces of Sweden are: