Main Page | See live article | Alphabetical index

Culture of Nericia

Nericia, also known as Nerike or Närke, is a Province in middle Sweden, which historically formed part of Svealand. The name is derived from the people who once inhabited the province, the Njarar or Nerikjar. The root nari, neri is cognate to English narrow and refers to the narrow inlets that caracterized the geography, a tribe that is also mentioned in the lay of Völund (Weyland the Smith):

"When the Lord of the Njars, Nidud, heard
That Völund sat in Wolfdale alone,
He sent warriors forth: white their shield-bosses
In the waning moon, and their mail glittered."
- Translated by W. H. Auden and P. B. Taylor

The next source for Nerike appears in Heimskringla by Snorri Sturlusson, where the King Ingjald Ill-ruler kills King Sporsnjall of Nerike, proclaiming himself the ruler of all of Sweden. Sporsnjall is succeeded by Olaf the far-sighted, but little is known about him. A powerful man in Nericia called Sigtryg received the Norwegian King Olaf the Holy 1028-1029 before Olaf's departure for Russia and its ruler Yaroslav I the Wise:

"It is to be related of King Olaf's journey, that he went first from Norway eastward through Eid forest to Vermaland, then to Vatnsby, and through the forests in which there are roads, until he came out in Nerike district. There dwelt a rich and powerful man in that part called Sigtryg, who had a son, Ivar, who afterwards became a distinguished person. Olaf stayed with Sigtryg all spring (A.D. 1029); and when summer came he made ready for a journey, procured a ship for himself, and without stopping went on to Russia to King Jarisleif and his queen Ingegerd" [1]

According to local traditions Olaf baptized many locals and the well he used can be seen near Hallsberg in the parish of Hardemo.

See also: History of Nericia