Kvenland, known as Cwenland, Kænland or similar terms in medieval sources, is an ancient name for an area in Fennoscandia and Scandinavia. Kvenland, in that or nearly that spelling, is known from an Old English account written in the 9th century, which used the information provided by the Norwegian adventurer and traveler Ohthere, and from Nordic sources, primarily Icelandic. One possible additional source was written in the modern-day area of Norway — all the known Nordic sources date to the 12th and 13th centuries. Other possible references to Kvenland by other names or spellings are also discussed on this page.
Old English Orosius
A Norwegian adventurer and traveler named Ohthere visited England around 890 CE. King Alfred of Wessex had his stories written down and included them in his Old English version of a world history written by the Romano-Hispanic author Orosius. Ohthere's story contains the only contemporary description about Kvenland that has survived from the 9th century:
[Ohthere] said that the Norwegians' (Norðmanna) land was very long and very narrow ... and to the east are wild mountains, parallel to the cultivated land. Finnas inhabit these mountains ... Then along this land southwards, on the other side of the mountain (sic), is Sweden ... and along that land northwards, Kvenland (Cwenaland). The Kvens (Cwenas) sometimes make depredations on the Northmen over the mountain, and sometimes the Northmen on them; there are very large [freshwater] meres amongst the mountains, and the Kvens carry their ships over land into the meres, and thence make depredations on the Northmen; they have very little ships, and very light.
As is emphasised in the text, Ohthere's account was an oral statement, made to King Alfred, and the section dealing with Kvenland takes up only two sentences. Ohthere's information on Kvens may have been second-hand, since, unlike in his other stories, Ohthere does not emphasise his personal involvement in any way. Ohthere's method of locating Kvenland can be interpreted to mean that Kvenland was located in and around the northern part of the modern-day Sweden and in the mid-western part of the modern-day Finland, when the difference in the Viking compass is taken into consideration (see more further below). Other, somewhat later sources call the land adjacent to the northern part of Norway "Finnmark."
Ohthere's Finnas may be a reference to the Sami people, but not all historians agree on this. Although Ohthere does not give any name for the area where his "Finnas" lived, he gives a lengthy description of their lives in and around Northern Norway, without mentioning Kvens.
Ohthere's mention of the "large [freshwater] meres" and of the Kvens' boats are of great interest. The meres are said to be "amongst the mountains", the words used in the text being geond þa moras. Ohthere may be referring to the Southern Norwegian lake district, which is also referred to in Orkneyinga saga. This way, the reference would have included Lake Mjøsa, an area which is known to have been inhabited at that time: the Orkneyinga saga tells how these inhabitants were attacked by men from Kvenland.
The mention of the "very light ships" (boats) carried overland has a well-documented ethnographic parallel in the numerous portages of the historical river and lake routes in Fennoscandia and Northern Russia. According to the philologist Irmeli Valtonen, "[the] text does not give us a clear picture where the Cwenas are to be located though it seems a reasonable conclusion that they lived or stayed somewhere in the modern-day areas of Northern Sweden or Northern Finland."
... the Swedes (Sweons) have to the south of them the arm of the sea called East (Osti), and to the east of them Sarmatia (Sermende), and to the north, over the wastes, is Kvenland (Cwenland), to the northwest are the Sami people (Scridefinnas), and the Norwegians (Norðmenn) are to the west.
The term Sarmatism was first used by Jan Długosz in his 15th century work on the history of Poland. Długosz was also responsible for linking the Sarmatians to the prehistory of Poland, and this idea was continued by other chroniclers and historians such as Marcin Bielski, Marcin Kromer and Maciej Miechowita. Miechowita's Tractatus de Duabus Sarmatiis became influential abroad, and for some time it was one of the most widely used reference works on the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.
The Viking compass is believed to have had a 45 degree rotation of cardinal points. If the territories listed in King Alfred's Orosius are examined with that in mind, the Norwegians would be to the northwest of Sweden, and the Sami people would be to the north. These points are correct after rotation based on the difference between the Viking and modern compasses. Kvenland is then situated to the northeast of Sweden and might be placed somewhere around the present-day Swedish Norrland or the western part of the present-day Finland. The information of Kvenland being situated "over the wastes", northwards from the Viking-period "Sweden" (corresponding roughly to the south-central part of present-day Sweden) matches the idea of Kvenland extending to Norrland. There is no "Finland" mentioned anywhere either in the original or the updated version of Orosius' history.
Hversu Noregr byggdist and Orkneyinga saga
The Orkneyinga saga contains a realistic description of Nór traveling from Kvenland to Norway. Based on the saga's internal chronologies, this would have happened around the 6th or 7th century CE, but the dating is very insecure. Locations of Kvenland, Finland and Gotland are given rather exactly:
"to the east of the gulf that lies across from the White Sea (Gandvík); we call that the Gulf of Bothnia (Helsingjabotn)."
The saga is correct in placing the Gulf of Bothnia "across" (i.e., "on the other side of" the isthmus between the two seas) from the White Sea. The saga does not say that Kvenland was on the coast, but just east of the Gulf.
This is how Nór started his journey to Norway:
But Nor, his brother, waited until snow lay on the moors so he could travel on snow-shoes. He went out from Kvenland and skirted the Gulf, and came to that place inhabited by the men called Sami (Lapps); that is beyond Finnmark.
Having traveled for a while, Nór was still "beyond Finnmark." After a brief fight with Sami people (Lapps), Nór continued:
But Nor went thence westward to the Kjolen Mountains and for a long time they knew nothing of men, but shot beasts and birds to feed to themselves, until they came to a place where the rivers flowed west of the mountains. — Then he went up along the valleys that run south of the fjord. That fjord is now called Trondheim.
Starting somewhere on the eastern coast of the Gulf of Bothnia, Nór had either gone all the way up and around the Gulf, or skied across; it was winter, and the gulf might have been frozen. Nór ended up attacking the area around Trondheim in central Norway and later the lake district in the south, conquering the country and uniting it under his rule. There is no mention of Kvenland after that. Again only a handful of words are devoted to Kvenland, mainly telling where it was.
Nór's journey from Kvenland to Norway is missing from Hversu, which in fact does not even mention that Nór came from Kvenland at all, only stating: "Norr had great battles west of the Keel". The journey may have been lifted from some other context and added to Orkneyinga saga in a later phase by an unknown author who wanted to make the saga more adventurous.
Egils saga is an epic Icelandic saga possibly by Snorri Sturluson (1179-1241 CE), who may have written it between 1220 and 1240 CE. The saga covers a long period, starting in Norway in 850 CE and ending around 1000 CE. It contains a short description of Egil's uncle Thorolf Kveldulfsson co-operating with a Kvenland king, Faravid, against invading Karelians. Rather accurate geographical details about Kvenland's location are given in chapter XIV:
Finmark is a wide tract; it is bounded westwards by the sea, wherefrom large firths run in; by sea also northwards and round to the east; but southwards lies Norway; and Finmark stretches along nearly all the inland region to the south, as also does Hålogaland outside. But eastwards from Namdalen (Naumdale) is Jämtland (Jamtaland), then Hälsingland (Helsingjaland) and Kvenland, then Finland, then Karelia (Kirialaland); along all these lands to the north lies Finmark, and there are wide inhabited fell-districts, some in dales, some by lakes. The lakes of Finmark are wonderfully large, and by the lakes there are extensive forests. But high fells lie behind from end to end of the Mark, and this ridge is called Keels.
Like Hversu Noregr byggdist, Egils saga clearly separates Finland and Kvenland, listing them as neighboring areas. However, Finland is not listed in any of the saga's surviving versions, indicating that it might be a later addition by someone who did not recognize Kvenland any more. The saga says "eastwards from Namdalen is Jämtland", but actually the direction is southeast. Also Hälsingland is southeast, not east, of Jämtland. Since it is widely assumed that the Viking compass had a 45 degree rotation of cardinal points, the saga's "east" seems to correspond to the contemporary southeast.
That same winter Thorolf went up on the fell with a hundred men; he passed on at once eastwards to Kvenland and met king Faravid.
Had Thorolf gone up to the mountains around his homeland Namdalen and then straight "eastwards", i.e., southeast, he would have first reached Jämtland and then Hälsingland. These are the same lands that were listed earlier in the saga. If the passage about going "southwest" is taken literally and directly, continuing from Hälsingland across the Gulf of Bothnia Thorolf would have arrived in the southwestern tip of present-day Finland, the center of Finland's Viking period population (see map). Again, as with Ohthere, Sami people and Kvens are not discussed at the same time. The saga tells how Norwegians taxed the Sami people, but there is no indication in the saga that the Kvens would have competed with the Norwegians for control of the Sami or lived near or among them. Much debate has taken place concerning whether the saga provides truthful information of Iron Age Kvenland by mentioning that the Kvens had a real-sounding 'king' and a 'law' to divide the loot. The saga places the confrontation of Norwegians and Karelians in the 9th century.
Besides Old English Orosius, Hversu Noregr byggdist, Orkneyinga saga and Egil's saga, Kvenland or Kvens are very briefly mentioned in four Icelandic texts from the same era. One of the texts may have been written in Norway.
Sigurd Ring (Sigurðr) was not there, since he had to defend his land, Sweden (Svíþjóð), since Curonians (Kúrir) and Kvens (Kvænir) were raiding there.
Historia Norwegiae was written sometime between 1160 and 1175 CE in an unknown location. It contains a list of peoples in the North:
But towards north many pagan tribes—alas!—stretch from the east behind Norway, namely Karelians (Kiriali) and Kvens (Kwæni), corneous Sami people (cornuti Finni) and both peoples of Bjarmia (utrique Biarmones). But what tribes dwell behind them, have we no certainty.
The Icelandic Annals have a late mention of Kvens clearly active in the North. Around 1271 CE, the following is said to have happened:
Then Karelians (Kereliar) and Kvens (Kvænir) pillaged widely in Hålogaland (Hálogaland).
Possible other sources
In some pre-medieval and medieval texts, it is not clear which groups of people the authors are referring to by the titles used. According to historians, terms used for either the Kvens, Finns and/or Sami in texts written during the 1st millennium AD include the following:
- Aeni, Aeningia (in reference to Fenningia) - by Pliny the Elder c. 77 AD;
- Fenni, Sitones - by Publius (or Gaius) Cornelius Tacitus, c. 98;
- Phinnoi - by Ptolemy, c. 150;
- Qwnio, Qwens - by Ulfilas (in Gothic: Wulfila), c. 352;
- Finni, Finnaithae, Screrefennae, Vinoviloth, Adogit - by Jordanes, c. 550;
- Finnas, Scriðefinnas - in Widsith, c. 600;
- Skridfinnar, Winnili - by Paul the Deacon, c. 790;
- Finnas, Cwenas - by Ohthere of Hålogaland, c. 888;
- Finnas, Cwenas, Qwen (Qwensae) - by King Alfred the Great of Wessex, c. 890.
In the Old Norse language the word "Finn" (finnr) referred to the Sami people, though, and not the Finnish people, and the word still has that same meaning in Bokmål (one of the two official standards of the Norwegian language). Skridfinne ("skiing Finn") and finne also referred to the Sami people, and not the Finnish people, in both the other Scandinavian languages, Latin (scricfinni/finni) and Greek (σκριϑίφινοι/φίννοι) during mediaeval times.
According to Finnish historian Kyösti Julku the Germanic tribe Sitones mentioned in Tacitus' Germania in 98 CE lived in the area in northern Fennoscandia claimed to be Kvenland, saying "There can be no confusion about the geographical location of the Sitones."
Kvenland and Kainuu
Kvenland has generated many theories about its origin, the location of Kvenland around or near the Bay of Bothnia has, however, been an unchanging feature of most interpretations since the 17th century, when the Swedish historians Johannes Messenius and Olaus Rudbeckius first noted the concept of Kvenland in Old Norse sources. In 1650, Professor Michael Wexionius from Turku became the first to associate Kvenland with the Finnish Kainuu. In the 18th century the Finnish historian Henrik Gabriel Porthan, among others, focused attention on the Ohthere passage mentioning the Cwenas. Whereas Porthan suggested that the ancient Kvens may have been Swedish, many others came to view the Kvens as an ancient Finnish tribe.
Nowadays Kainuu is a name of an inland province in northeastern Finland. In the past the name Kainuu was often used of the more western coastal area around the Bay of Bothnia, even up to the 19th century. That is the area seen by most historians to have been the heartland of the ancient territory of Kvenland. Accordingly, the view most commonly shared by historians today is that the names "Kven" and "Kainu(u)" likely share common roots. In the early Umesaami dictionaries the terms Kainolads and Kainahalja described Norwegian and Swedish men and women respectively.
Kvenland and Pohjola
In a theory somewhat closely related to the Kainuu theory, Kvenland has also been associated with the legendary Pohjola. Pohjola is an other-worldly country in Finnish mythology, ruled by a fierce witch called Louhi. Pohjola is best known from the Kalevala, a 19th-century Finnish work of epic poetry compiled by Elias Lönnrot from Karelian and Finnish oral folklore and mythology, collected largely in the Finnish region of Kainuu.
Different interpretations of the origins of the mythical Pohjola exist. Some include parts of Lapland and the ancient Kainuu (same as Kvenland according to common view today) in Kalevala's Pohjola. Some point out a similarity with the name Pohjanmaa (Ostrobothnia in English), a region in western Finland.
An original view has been provided by a Finnish historian and Helsinki University professor, Matti Klinge, who has placed Kvenland/Kainuu not only in southern Finland, but around the Baltic Sea as a kind of Finnish-Swedish "maritime confederation". Klinge has presented a hypothesis of Kvenland as a naval power on the Baltic, located on both the present-day Finnish and Swedish sides of the Gulf of Bothnia as well as in some of the surrounding areas. The folklorist and professor of literature Väinö Kaukonen calls it "fantastic fabulation" and a "dream-wish". However, Professor Emeritus in Archeology at the University of Turku, Unto Salo has also concluded that "Kvens/Kainulainens" were men of Satakunta in Southern Finland. There is archeological evidence linking Satakunta and Lapland (for example types of skis) but skipping the areas between which suggests that expeditions were undertaken from Satakunta to the North during the late Viking Age. Further, toponomy suggests that there were regular routes used by the people of Satakunta to get to the North. Lastly, haapio, a type of a very light dugout boat was used extensively in Satakunta and would have been ideal for such expeditions. Unto Salo speculates that the name Haaparanta ("Aspen shore") in the Swedish Lapland would have been given due to presence of asps needed to build haapios. Originally Kvenland was more likely situated in the Southern-Ostrobothnia but when this habitation disappeared in the early 9th century for unknown reasons, the Norwegians continued to apply the term Kven to the men of Satakunta and Häme who inherited the Northern trade and taxation.
Different views exist of why ancient scholars have made references to Kvenland as an area dominated by women. Some have suggested that there may have been misinterpretations of terminology. Whatever the origin of the term kven is, it effortlessly translates to "woman" in Old Norse. Proto-Germanic *kwinōn, *kunōn, *kwēni-z and *kwēnō for "woman" developed into kona, kvǟn, kvān, kvɔ̄n, kvendi, kvenna and kvinna in Old Norse. Among sources used in the related debate by historians is the following statement of Tacitus from c. 98 CE:
"Upon the Suiones, border the people Sitones; and, agreeing with them in all other things, differ from them in one, that here the sovereignty is exercised by a woman. So notoriously do they degenerate not only from a state of liberty, but even below a state of bondage."
According to a view shared by many historians, the term Sitones (Kvens) shares etymological roots with Sigtuna, which much later had a Latin spelling Situne. According to Disas saga, the Sitones were ruled by a queen. According to a common view, the "queen" of the Sitones either derives from or is a possible linguistic confusion of an Old Norse term used for "woman", which shares linguistic origins with the term used in reference to the Kvens. According to Thomas William Shore, the English language term "queen" derives from the term "qwen", a spelling used for the Kvens e.g. by Wulfila in c. 352 CE and King Alfred the Great of Wessex in c. 890 CE. In 1075 AD, in Gesta Hammaburgensis ecclesiae pontificum, the German chronicler Adam of Bremen calls Kvenland Women's Land, stating the following:
Meanwhile Swedes (Sueones), who had expelled their bishop, got a divine revenge. And at first King's son called Anund, whose father had sent him to enlarge his kingdom, after arriving to Women's Land (patriam feminarum), whom we consider to be Amazons, was killed along with his army from poison, that they had mixed to the spring water. (III 15)
"After that come the Swedes (Sueones) that rule wide areas up until the "Land of Women" (terram feminarum). Living east of these are said to be Wizzi, Mirri, Lamiy, Scuti and Turci up until the border of Russia (Ruzziam)." (IV 14)
In the related debate references are sometimes also made to the Finnish epic Kalevala, according to which Pohjola was ruled by a woman called Louhi or Pohjan-akka. The ancient Norse knew the Northern ruler-goddesses by the names gýgjar (singular: gýgr) and íviðjur (singular: íviðja). There is also a reference to a northern land of women in an Icelandic manuscript from the 14th century, which describes a kuenna land ("woman land").
Different theories on the origins of the Kvens
In 1958, a Finnish historian, politician and University of Helsinki professor, Kustaa Vilkuna, suggested that Kainuu or Kvenland was originally in Southern Finland, on the Gulf of Bothnia and covering just northern Southwest Finland and coastal Satakunta. A small local area called as "Kalanti" (Kaland in Swedish) would have been a remnant of the earlier name Kvenland. Because of the trading and tribute-taking expeditions as well as settlement expansion of the kainulaiset, the territorial concept of Kainuu was gradually moved northward.
Another mid-20th-century historian, Professor Jalmari Jaakkola, considered the Kvens or kainulaiset as long-range hunters and tribute-takers coming from Upper Satakunta, from the inland region surrounding the present-day city of Tampere. This theory was supported by Professor Armas Luukko.
In 1979, Professor Pentti Virrankoski of the University of Turku presented a hypothesis according to which Kainuu was originally the sedentary Iron Age settlement in Southern Ostrobothnia. After the settlement was supposedly destroyed by tribal warfare during the early 9th century, the kainulaiset became dispersed along the western coasts of Finland, leaving only place-names and some archaeological finds as permanent traces.
In 1980, the University of Oulu professor Jouko Vahtola pointed out that there is no evidence of the name Kainuu being of Western Finnish origin and considered it to have Eastern Finnish roots. However, he suggested a common Germanic etymology for the names Kainuu and Kvenland. Like most of his predecessors, Vahtola viewed Kainuu/Kvenland as the name of the coastal Ostrobothnia, meaning roughly "low-lying land". Based on the archaeological knowledge of the north, Vahtola did not believe that there was a separate Iron Age tribe called Kvens. He considered the Kvens to be mainly Tavastians hunting and trading in northern Ostrobothnia, thus partially reproducing the view of Jaakkola and Luukko (Upper Satakunta being a part of traditional Tavastia). This theory is nowadays widely adopted in Finland, Sweden and Norway, and it is cited in many studies and popular works.
In 1995 the Finnish linguist Jorma Koivulehto gave support for the theory of common etymological roots of the names Kainuu and Kvenland. He suggests a new etymology meaning roughly "marine gap-land", the "marine gap" being the northern sea-route on the Bothnian Gulf.
Increasing archaeological fieldwork in northern Finland has cast some doubts on the idea of Kvenland having almost no sedentary settlements. Encouraged by the new findings, Professor Kyösti Julku of Oulu University presented a theory of the Kvens being early permanent Finnish inhabitants of Northern Finland and Norrbotten (a part of modern-day Sweden).
Some Swedish historians have suggested that the ancient Kvens were actually a Scandinavian and not a Finnish group, but these views have little support nowadays. The Swedish archaeologist Thomas Wallerström suggests that the Kvens/kainulaiset was a collective name for several Finnic groups participating in the west-east fur-trade, not just southern Finns but ancestors of Karelians and Vepsians as well. In this case, the land of the Kvens would have extended from the Bothnian Gulf in the west to the Lake Onega in the east.
Kvenland and Kvens later in historical time
In 1328, Tälje Charter ("Tälje stadga") - the oldest known record written in Swedish - mention the Birkarls ("bircharlaboa"). Based on the information revealed, the Birkarls then inhabited areas, e.g., in Northern Hälsingland, which covered the western coast of the Gulf of Bothnia, and from there all the way up and around the gulf to Oulu River. Tälje Charter is a state treaty ratified between the Kvens and the Swedish crown, in which the king of Sweden guarantees the Brkarl Kvens trading and tax-collecting rights as chief enforcement officers (Swedish term: Fogde) in the North.
In his 1539 map Carta Marina, Swedish Olaus Magnus places Birkarl Kvens ("Berkara Qvenar") on the Norwegian North Atlantic cost, roughly in the middle in between the archipelago of Lofoten and the modern-day city of Tromsø. In his 1555 Historia de Gentibus Septentrionalibus (A Description of the Northern Peoples), he also mentions both terms: the Finnish traders who commuted between and inhabited the general area of Tornio and the modern-day area of Norway are said to have been called Kvens. The earliest remaining Norwegian tax records, stored at the National Archival Services of Norway (Riksarkivet), dating to the mid-16th century, also mention Kvens.
Today, the term Kven is used in Norway in reference to the descendants of Finnish-speaking people who have inhabited or migrated to the present-day area of Norway anytime before World War II. Migration waves from the 16th century onward have brought Finnish settlers to Northern Norway from the modern-day areas of Northern Sweden and Northern Finland, mostly from the northern coastal areas of the Bay of Bothnia.
Modern reappearance of the terms "Kvenland" and "Kvens"
Repeated claims about there in mediaeval times having existed a country named Kvenland, populated by a Finnish-speaking people named Kvens, have reappeared in modern times in northern Sweden and northern Finland, amid claims that the "Kvens" not only are an indigenous people in northern Sweden and Finland, but the indigenous people there. Claims that are directly connected to a struggle over the rights to hunt and fish in very large areas in northern Fennoscandia, between the Sami people, who are the recognised indigenous people of the area, and the Swedish- and Finnish-speaking population there. There are, however, no documented or in any other way proven connection between the people in northern Sweden and Finland who now claim to be Kvens, and the geographical area, and people who lived there, that in mediaeval times were referred to as Kvenland and Kvens.
- Online edition of Ohthere's description of Kvenland. A more faithful edition of the original text is in Thorpe, B., The Life of Alfred The Great Translated From The German of Dr. R. Pauli To Which Is Appended Alfred's Anglo-Saxon Version of Orosius, Bell, 1900, pp. 250-52. Note that in translations here the names of places, countries and people have been harmonized to forms used in Wikipedia, while forms used in the text are presented in parentheses.
- Given the context, "geond", with a range of possible meanings in "throughout", "over" and "as far as", is best understood as "amongst"; and "moras", with a range of possible meanings in "moors" or "mountains", is best understood as "mountains", though "moors" may be intended. The word mór  m (-es/-as) used in the original text can be translated as moor, morass, swamp; hill, mountain. See e.g. .
- For example Egil's Saga.
- Julku, Kyösti: Kvenland - Kainuunmaa. With English summary: The Ancient territory of Kainuu. Oulu, 1986.
- Ohthere's description of Sami people. Earlier in the text Ohthere is reported to have said that "that land is very long north from thence, but it is all waste, except in a few places, where the Finnas dwell here and there".
- Orkneyinga saga. See also original text.
- Irmeli Valtonen: A Land beyond Seas and Mountains: A Study of References to Finland in Anglo-Saxon Sources. A paper in the book Suomen varhaishistoria [Proto-history of Finland]. Edited by Kyösti Julku. Rovaniemi 1992.
- Cf. Geography of Alfred
- Andrzej Wasko, Sarmatism or the Enlightenment: The Dilemma of Polish Culture, Sarmatian Review XVII.2.
- See e.g. Weibull, Lauritz. De gamle nordbornas väderstrecksbegrepp. Scandia 1/1928; Ekblom, R. Alfred the Great as Geographer. Studia Neuphilologia. 14/1941-2; Ekblom, R. Den forntida nordiska orientering och Wulfstans resa till Truso. Förnvännen. 33/1938; Sköld, Tryggve. Isländska väderstreck. Scripta Islandica. Isländska sällskapets årsbok 16/1965.
- Hversu Noregr byggdist. See also original text.
- The text in the original language.
- It is not sure if this is a reference to Sami people or some other group. Finnic-based "Lapp" does not appear in any other saga. It became a common name for Sami people only later in Middle Ages, and Norwegians never really adopted it.
- Olaus Magnus map of Scandinavia 1539 CE. Taking benefit from the frozen Gulf of Bothnia was still habitual in the 16th century, as described in the map, see section F.
- Egil's Saga, Chapter XIV
- Egil's Saga, Chapter XVII
- Egil's Saga, Chapter X
- Norna-Gests þáttr, chapter 7.. See also English translation. Archived May 14, 2006, at the Wayback Machine.
- Storm, Gustav. Monumenta Historica Norwegiae, pages 73-75. See also page 204. Translation provided here is by the author of the article.
- Íslenzkir annáler sive Annales Islandici ab anno Christi 809 ad annum 1430, pages 140-141. Translation provided here is by the author of the article.
- Jaakkola, Jalmari: Suomen varhaishistoria" ("Proto-history of Finland"). Werner Söderström. Porvoo, 1956
- Julku, Kyösti: Kvenland - Kainuunmaa, page 51. With English summary: The Ancient territory of Kainuu. Oulu, 1986.
- Korhonen, Olavi: "Håp - vad är det för en båt? Lingvistiska synpunkter. Bottnisk kontakt I. Föredrag vid maritimhistorisk konferens i Örnsköldsvik 12-14 februari 1982. Örnsköldsvik 1982."
- Oslo University online Norwegian dictionary. Retrieved 12 July 2016.
- Svenska Akademins Ordbok 1924. University of Gothenburg Språkdata project. Retrieved 12 July 2016.
- Tacitus' Germania.
- Julku, Kyösti: Kvenland - Kainuunmaa. With English summary: The Ancient territory of Kainuu. Oulu, 1986. See pages 11-24.
- Lexicon Lapponicum, 1768
- Anneli Asplund; Sirkka-Liisa Mettom (October 2000). "Kalevala: the Finnish national epic". Retrieved 15 August 2010.
- Jorma Koivulehto. Ala-Satakunnan Kainu ja pohjoisen Kainuu. [The Kainu of Western Satakunta and the Kainuu of the north.] A paper in the book Kielen ja kulttuurin Satakunta. 1995.
- Klinge, Matti. Muinaisuutemme merivallat (1983). The book is in Finnish, also published in Swedish as Östersjövärlden (1984) and in English as Ancient Powers of the Baltic Sea (2006).
- Kaukonen, Väinö: Kalevala Lönnrotin runoelmana II. Tosiasioita ja kuvitelmia. [The Kalevala as an epic of Elias Lönnrot. Facts and imaginations.] Snellman-instituutin julkaisuja 7. Kuopio 1988. See pages 200 - 209.
- Unto Salo, Faravidin retket ja Satakunnan organisoituminen rautakaudella (Faravid 27/2003)
- Pentti Virrankoski, Kainu - Pohjanmaan rautakautinen kansa (Faravid 2/1978)
- Etymology of kwen.
- Svenskt Diplomatorium I nr 852. Originalbrev. Pope Alexander III's address to king Knut Eriksson and Jarl Birger Brosa in the 1170s.
- Heinrich Gottfried Reichard took this view in his edition of the Germania; Pauly's Real-Encyclopädie der classischen Altertumswissenschaft in alphabetischer Ordnung, ed. August Pauly, Christian Walz and W.S. Teuffel, Volume 6.1 Pra - Stoiai, Stuttgart: Metzler, 1852, OCLC 165378771, p. 1226 (German)
- Charles Anthon, A classical dictionary containing an account of the principal proper names mentioned in ancient authors and intended to elucidate all the important points connected with the geography, history, biography, mythology, and fine arts of the Greeks and Romans: Together with an account of coins, weights, and measures, with tabular values of the same, New York: Harper, 1841, repr. 1869, OCLC 52696823, p. 1244.
- Gudmund Schütte, tr. Jean Young, Our Forefathers, the Gothonic Nations: A Manual of the Ethnography of the Gothic, German, Dutch, Anglo-Saxon, Frisian and Scandinavian Peoples, Cambridge: Cambridge University, 1929–33, OCLC 2084026, p. 126.
- Gwyn Jones, A History of the Vikings, 2nd ed. Oxford: Oxford University, 1984, ISBN 9780192851390, pp. 24–25.
- Origin of the Anglo-Saxon Race. Thomas William Shore. First edition, 1906. Reissued by Kennikat Press, 1971.
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- Myten om kvänernas rike. En granskning. Manuskript, 2013-08-12. Lennart Lundmark is a retired historian, formerly of Umeå University, a recognised expert in the field, and has published several books about the history of northern Fennoscandia (PDF in Swedish). Retrieved 14 July, 2016.
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