Swedish Rule

Estonia 1561-1660

In 1561, the state of the Livonian Order was disintegrating. Russian raids resulted in severe destruction and caused the various cities and noblemen of Livonia to look elsewhere for protection. In 1561, the city coucil of REVAL (Tallinn) paid homage to King Erik XIV. of Sweden.
In 1565, Estonia got her first protestant bishop; in 1570 the Courland Church Ordinnance was extended to Estonia.
The western part of Estonia - the islands of Ösel, Dagö and the mainland Wiek region - were made a Duchy for Magnus, the brother of the King of Denmark. By 1583, Sweden had established it's sovereignty over mainland Estonia, while Ösel became Danish territory. Narva, in eastern Estonia, from 1558 to 1581 was held by Russia, providing it with access to the Baltic Sea. English ships used Narva as a port to trade with Russia, and Russian ships plied the Baltic Sea, a trade Sweden tried to suppress.
Estonia became the staging point for further Swedish conquests : 1583 Ingria (lost again in 1585, regained in 1617) and Livonia (including what is southern Estonia today, gained in 1621). In 1584, Harrien, Wierland, Jerwen and Wiek were administratively united to form the Swedish Duchy of Estonia.
Swedish Estonia's population in 1582 was estimated at 250,000.
In 1645, Denmark ceded the island Ösel to Sweden.

Estonian History 1558-1710, the Swedish Age, from Estonica
Courland, Livonia and Estonia. Confidential Handbooks No.57, 1919, from the British Foreign Office, posted on the Web by jewishgen.org
Estonian Timeline, by Tapani Hietaniemi
History of Tallinn (Reval), by infomaterjalid
REFERENCE Reinhard Wittram, Baltische Geschichte. Die Ostseelande Livland, Estland und Kurland 1180-1918 (Baltic History. The Baltic Lands of Livonia, Estonia and Courland, 1180-1918), Darmstadt : Wissenschaftliche Buchgemeinschaft (1954) 1973, in German

This page is part of World History at KMLA
First posted in 2000, last revised on November 11th 2004

Click here to go Home
Click here to go to Information about KMLA, WHKMLA, the author and webmaster
Click here to go to Statistics

Impressum · Datenschutz