Last modified on 22 May 2014, at 17:51

Finnish Maiden

The Finnish Maiden on a 1906 postcard

The Maiden of Finland (Finnish: Suomi-neito, Swedish: Finlands mö) is the national personification of Finland.

PersonificationEdit

She is a barefoot young woman in her mid-twenties with often braided blonde hair, blue eyes, wearing a blue and white national costume or a white dress. She was originally called Aura after the Aura River in Turku.

As a symbol, the Finnish Maiden has been used since the 19th century when she was pictured as a woman wearing a turreted crown, and then developing as Finland gained a national consciousness and independence.

Because of the historical bonds between Finland and Sweden, the Finnish Maiden has sometimes been interpreted as the daughter or younger sister of Mother Svea.

In the painting Hyökkäys by Eetu Isto, the Finnish maiden is being attacked by the Russian eagle, which is tearing away the law book. It was painted when the Russification of Finland started 1899.

Mapping issuesEdit

The areas ceded by Finland to the Soviet Union after the Continuation War.

The Maiden of Finland can also refer to the shape of Finland on the map. With a little imagination it looks like a female form which has one hand raised (and another before the Moscow Armistice of 1944), a head, and a skirt. The metaphor is so commonly used that the northwestern area around Enontekiö is known as the Arm (Käsivarsi) even in official contexts. Compare the dress in the painting above with the map on the right.

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit

Related English language explanations