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Was there a finnish settlement in Uusimaa before the Swedish one/[TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII]?

At the 9th International Finno-Ugric Congress, Ritva Liisa Pitkanen delivered a paper on place names along the southern coast of Finland (2001). Throughout the paper, all the toponyms of non-Swedish origin in the province of Uusimaa are treated as if they could have originated only from Finnish words, and consequently, the hypothetical primordial population is declared to have consisted of Finns--more specifically of Hame-Finns. The paper declares that "there are so many loan words [---] referring to the Finnish interior, that the large number of the names as such is evidence of the settlement history" (Pitkanen 2001 : 58). On the other hand, an attempt has been made to find connections with Estonian settlers. It is maintained (erroneously) that the idea of such connections would be based on names resembling each other in Estonia and Uusimaa, such as Karis in Uusimaa and Karja in Saaremaa, Porkala in Kirkkonummi and Purku in Rapla. It is followed by a reservation admitting that this type of evidence is uncertain and fragmentary (actually a matter of course) (s. Pitkanen 2001 : 58). The host of other evidence of various kinds about Estonian connection (Nordling 1974; 1976), published some 25 years ago, is not mentioned at all.

The general impression of the paper, therefore, remains that it can be proved that there was a settlement of Hame-Finns on the southern coast of Finland before the Swedes arrived. The evidence proving it would be some 400 toponyms of purportedly verified Finnish origin, but mostly of unverified age.

Disregarding for the present the purported evidence, the theory of a Hame-Finnish settlement on the coast in the 12th or 13th century seems highly improbable. A similar theory was maintained, e.g. by V. Voionmaa (1913) and by G. Kerkkonen (1945), who claimed that the Hame-Finns originally populated not only Hame but also Uusimaa, without any gaps. There is, however, a tangible archaeological gap between central Hame and southern Uusimaa, a gap that occurs also in the stock of early documents concerning Finland. This gap covers all of Uusimaa north of the belt settled by Swedes. The archaeological finds indicate that the Iron Age settlement in Hame was concentrated in certain places in the lake-district that lies in its entirety more than 100 km from the coast. From this nucleus the settlement spread out in the beginning of the second millennium, along the waterways in the first place. The crossing of the watershed between the lake-district and Uusimaa seems to have taken place as late as in the 14th and 15th centuries. While the churches of Porvoo (Borga 1327) and Hattula (Hattala 1324) were completed at least about 1350 and a dozen villages within the parish of Porvoo are already mentioned before the year 1400, the records do not mention even a single village in Nurmijarvi, Pyhajarvi and Sippola before the year 1527 (1). Obviously the whole area covered by what became later the parishes of Anjala, Artjarvi, Askola, Pornainen, Elima, Karjalohja, Myrskyla, Nummi, Nurmijarvi, Pukkila, Pusula, Pyhajarvi, Sammatti and Sippola was practically uninhabited as late as in the 14th century. Only six place-names in this vast area are recorded before 1440, as compared to more than 120 in the coastal section. Apparently the Hame-Finns began breaking new soil in the northern belt of Uusimaa at about the beginning of the 15th century.

Considering this state of things, it seems rather unlikely that there should have been a settlement of Hame-Finns even farther from their heartland than this belt as early as 1200 or before. Only five parishes are known to have existed in Hame in 1335 (Leinberg 1886). There were hardly more than 1 500 or 2 000 inhabitants in each parish in those days, which means that the population of Hame would have been less than 10000 in 1335. It grew steadily and reached the number of 45 000 in 1650. Assuming the same growth rate before 1335 as after, there would have been only about 5 000 Hame-Finns in the year 1200. There is nothing to indicate a reverse trend before 1335, and, consequently, there would hardly have been more than 10 000 Hame-Finns in Hame at any time before 1335. Obviously this demographic situation makes an early Hame-Finnish settlement on the coast unlikely, and, therefore, strong evidence would be needed to prove that it happened, nevertheless. It is not enough to prove that there are certain place-names that could emanate from residents descended from Hame-Finns in the Finnish interior. It must also be proved that the names in question could not possibly have originated in some other way. A clue to another possibility is given in Pitkanen's paper by the notification that King Magnus Eriksson granted fishing rights in Uusimaa to a certain monastery in Estonia in the 14th century. By contrast, there is no documentary proof of Hame-Finns having had such rights in Uusimaa, although this is asserted in the paper. The document referred to says in effect: "We [King] Magnus make it known to all men, that we, to these letter-holders, who live in Overby [etc.], adjudge all their [fishing-]waters of old, that our sheriffs have adjudged to them on our behalf, and that parishioners [sochne manner] from Hattala, that is Huso and Ostersundom, have unduly hindered them [to use]." (Diplomatarium Svecanum 1858-1865 : 741-742).

The document obviously deals with a dispute between parishioners of Sipoo where Huso and Ostersundom are situated. These places seem to have been called Hattala (probably an abridgement of *Hattahalla, a name composed of the Swedish words hatter 'cliff' and hall 'flat rock'), when the original Royal letter was written in 1347. In the extant document, a transcript from 1624, some useful explanations have been added, among them apparently also the quoted definition of the name Hattala. The name Hattala occurs, furthermore, as a village name in Porvoo Parish and as a parish name in the middle of Hame. It is the latter fact that has caused the misunderstanding that the loosing party would have been a group of Hame-Finns. Actually the locution sochne man(ner) is an analogue to landsman ('fellow countrymen') and, therefore, clearly refers to fellow parishioners (of Sipoo).

Supposing that the coast was considered cultivable even before the Swedish settlement, it would have been within easy reach from Estonia. (A sail from Estonia to the Porvoo archipelago takes 12 hours with a speed of four knots.) As early as in about 1250, Estonia had a population of 150 000 to 180 000 (as deduced from the registration of about 22 000 carucates) (Indreko 1961 : 31) and we would, therefore, expect Estonians to have had some incentive to settle outside their country long before the less numerous Finns from Hame (or even from the Turku region) had felt any urge to clear land many days wanderings from their native region.

If, however, Finns settled in the area, one would expect to find a number of names ending on the suffix -la (or -la) that often denotes inhabited places in Hame (and somewhat less often in Estonia). In those parts of Uusimaa that have been inhabited by Finns continuously, we find about 160 such names with records from before 1600. In the archipelago (including the waterfront), on the other hand, old names of this type are practically absent. Only in the Porvoo river valley we find the -la names Hattula, Hentala, Kallela, Kijalla and Thezala. (These names will be dealt with below.) Later the name Hoornhatt (1414) was renamed Hornehattela (1541). We should also note that the typical Hame-names that contain the words kyto, kyro, era, kemi, paatti and 15 other names, shown on the maps by J. Vahtola (1980), are not to be found on the coast, although they occur in many other places outside Hame. The only class of names common to Hame and the southern coast is the group ending in -salo in the Hame names and in -sal in the coastal names. This happens to be one of the two of J. Vahtolas examples that occur also in Estonia, where the same end-element appears in the form -salu.

Anyway, even unexpected and unlikely things happen sometimes, and Hame-Finns could, of course, have settled in southern Uusimaa despite the unfavourable odds. Let us look at the linguistic evidence. The many names ending in -lax, -sal, -sar (-sor, -sar) and -pa do not as such prove Finnish provenance, since these elements originate from words common to Finnish and Estonian. The same applies to the occurrence of diphthongs, such as ai and au, which are common both in Estonian and Finnish place-names. The diphthong ei occurs also in some Swedish dialects in Uusimaa.

Regarding such names as Orvlaks, Rilax and Vattlax, they are useless as indicators of provenance since the words orv, ria and vatte occur in Swedish and so these names might not originate from a Finnic people in spite of their apparent "Finnishness". Incidentally, there are toponyms such as Orvenbo, Ri, Riala, Riberget, Vattlosa and Vettsjon in Sweden, and in Uusimaa we find many hybrid names, such as Hirdal, Kaitviken, Pakasby and Skraddarla. The names Vestlax and Bolax hint to the possibility of hybrid toponyms ending in -lax as well.

Since the parishes of Bromarv and Tenala do not lie on the southern coast of Finland and since their Finnic sounding toponyms are directly related to the large group of Finnic loan names in the archipelago of Turunmaa, we will not deal with them in the present context, but concentrate on the coast from Hanko eastwards.

If there was a settlement of Hame-Finns on the coast and in the archipelago before the Swedish immigration, we have reason to expect that both groups of settlers made use of the most suitable and fertile pieces of land in this vast area. Since, according to the theory, the Finns somehow disappeared or merged into the Swedish population, the Swedes would sooner or later have taken over the originally Finnish villages. The many extant documents from the 14th and 15th centuries tell us that the coastal population was entirely Swedish at that time. By 1540 practically all villages in Uusimaa had been registered in some document or other. We can feel rather sure that all villages that existed when the Swedish settlement started are among those noted in the documents emanating from the period before the year 1600. The names of all these villages were listed by G. Hausen (1922). Thus, village names not found in the Hausen list can hardly be old enough to refer to settlements from the pre-Swedish period, and as far as names of settlements are concerned, the Hausen inventory will suffice for our study.

Now, if there was a Finnish (or other) settlement in coastal Uusimaa before the Swedish one, the villages certainly had names in the native language of their inhabitants. When the arriving Swedes took over these villages, they would most probably have taken over the original names as well. Demonstrably, this is what happened with a number of names that were originally names of bays, islands and the like. A crushing majority of all the old Swedish toponyms in Uusimaa end in -by, -bole, -bolstad, -gard or -stad (Swedish words denoting village, farm and the like). One would, therefore, expect at least a part of the toponyms left by a Finnish settlement to designate village, farm, etc. A search for this type of safe traces of the purportedly resident Hame-Finns in coastal Uusimaa reveals that there are only seven names ending in something like the Finnish -kyla 'village, hamlet'. Although Estonian pronunciation and spelling nowadays differ from Finnish as far as this word is concerned, it did not do so at the presumed time of naming the villages. Thus the names ending in -kyla and -kila do not distinguish them as non-Estonian. As for Ingwarskila (1450) and Raddkila (1457) in Inga, they are hybrid toponyms, Ingvar being a Swedish name and the word radd (possibly an Estonian loan-word?) occurring only in (dialectal) Swedish. The other -kila toponyms begin with Humla-, Rand- and Oll- (All-), words that are found in Sweden as well as in Inga. The inference is that there may have been a mixed population of Swedes and speakers of a Finnic language at the time when the names were coined. The village Tammikyla, on the other hand, is of later provenance and together with the villages Haapajarvi (1502), Kahola (1540) and Kylmela (1540) it lies not far from the parish of Nummi where the first Finnish villages are noted from about 1420. A more widespread settlement followed in the 16th century. These four villages in Kirkkonummi seem to originate from the latter Hame-Finnish colonization of northern Uusimaa. Thus, neither the kila names nor Tammikyla supply sufficient proof of a Finnish settlement preceding the Swedish colonization of Uusimaa. Nor does the village Kynnar (1417) in Siuntio (not far from the -kila villages) indicate a Finnish provenance. Considering the existence of Scandinavian names such as Kynnefjall, one cannot exclude the possibility that Kynnar is a Swedish name, like the neighbouring Siundo (1417), Bollstad (1451), Karskog (1532) and Siundeby (1417). If we are looking for Finnic roots, however, it should be words with a short u and a long n in the first place, such as Estonian kunna-pu 'elm' or kunnari 'schooner'. (2) Obviously, the etymology of the name Kynnar remains too doubtful for providing even a hint about its provenance.

Next, let us scrutinize the other toponyms ending in -la. These are Kala, Pikkala in Siuntio, and Hattula, Henttala, Kiala, Kallela and Teissala in Porvoo. Out of these, Kala (1472) is no more Finnish than, e.g. Kalabodarna, Kalasjon and Kalen--names that abound in Sweden. Pikkala (1476) reminds of the Estonian place-names Pickuta, Pikaeuaekae (both mentioned in the Liber Census Daniae (= LCD), s. Johansen 1933 (3)) and Pikkuna (Kettunen 1955) and cannot be proved to be exclusively Finnish.

The Porvoo names, taken as a group, sound definitely Finnic. They should be considered in connection with Nieto (1363), the name of a nearby village in Askola Parish--with reservations for the possibilty that Nieto could also be of Lappish provenance (cf. Nietsak in Lappland). Hattula (1555) is a late Finnish appellation for Gambla konungxgarden (1413) 'The Old Royal Manor', but the name probably originates from an older Swedish toponym, *Hattahalla, presumably the name of some steep hill. Kallela, a name of uncertain meaning, could be Estonian just as well as Finnish.

Teissala, once spelt Thezala (1404), is the name of an old village on the eastern bank of the river Porvoonjoki. The villages in the neighbourhood occurring in records before 1404 were all situated on the western bank, and Teissala would thus have been considered as "the village on the other side". The Estonian words teisale, teisele poole mean precisely 'to the other side'. If some Estonians were living in Gammelgard, Saxby and Karsby on the western bank, it would have been natural for them to refer to the village on the opposite bank as something like Teisala (the corresponding Finnish words are toisaalle, toisella). It would be a parallel to the Amerindian name Accomac that also means 'on the other side' (of Chesapeake Bay) (Stewart 1970 : 2). The name Teissala thus seems to indicate a mixed population of Swedes and Estonians in this river valley in the late 14th century.

The manorial name Kiala (1516) could be either Finnish or Estonian. The name occurs in some places in Finland, but generally toponyms beginning with Kii- are more common in Estonia than in Finland. Supposing that the Uusimaa Kiala got its name from Estonians, it could have developed from an original *Kiha-lage 'throng-field', certainly an adequate name for the open field between Saxby and the manor where in Catholic times a fair day was arranged every St. Peter and Paul Day (June 29). This market is said to have attracted lots of people (Hartman 1906 : 12). The name Henttala (1542) is probably derived from a common Finno-Estonian word denoting 'tail; outermost part', thus leaving us without any guidance about the namegivers.

Lastly, the above mentioned name Nieto (1363) in Askola Parish existed long before most of Askola became populated. Nieto reminds of the Estonian place-name Nehatu (in LCD Niggitae). The Finnish word nietos 'snowdrift' seems a bit out of place for an etymology. There is only one other village in southern Askola that is demonstrably of the same age as Nieto, viz. Monnby (originally Mondby, 1382). Since Monnby is a Swedish name, these two villages names indicate, if anything, a mixed Swedish-Estonian outpost, remotely connected with the Gammelgard-Teissala complex.

Two more place-names should be considered in this connection, viz. Moijsze (1540) in Espoo and the name Wanhamoisio or Vannemose that was used a couple of times (1574 and 1588) for Gammelgard (originally Gamblegard 1382) in Porvoo. Moisa is an Estonian word denoting 'estate' or 'manor'. A number of places called Wannemoise, Vanamoisa, etc. have been registered in Estonia (i.a. 1583) (Johansen 1933 : 174, 318, 329, 415, 431, 530). Although Finnish has a word moisio 'meadow clearing' the Estonian moisa has also been borrowed by Finnish in the identical form moisio, 'manor'. These names in Espoo and Porvoo contribute to the evidence for the presence of an Estonian streak in the early Swedish settlement in Uusimaa.

To sum up, as far as original Finnic village names are concerned, none of them is demonstrably un-Estonian. Therefore, none can be regarded as specifically Finnish. The typical village names provide no evidence for a settlement of Hame-Finns preceding the Swedes, and we have to transmit our search to another group of names, viz. old names of natural features, which have later, in many cases, become village names. It is obvious that names of natural features could have been named by habitual visitors just as well as by permanent settlers. As regards the Uusimaa archipelago, its many sheltered bays would have provided ideal fishing-grounds for Estonian fishermen who had nothing like that on the southern side of the Gulf of Finland. Fishing in such a multitudinous group of bays, islands and skerries far from home would, of course, require navigational aids of some kind. Descriptive toponymes would provide such an aid, and we should therefore be prepared to accept a rather special name-typology differing from the ordinary Estonian name-typology.

As noted by R.-L. Pitkanen (2001 : 54), the largest subgroup of the nature names category consists of names ending in -lax. This element (in the form laksi 'bay, creek') is not specifically Finnish, but instead the ancient Finnic form of what has become lahti in Finnish, laht in Estonian. The form laksi has not been preserved in areas where Finnish or Estonian is spoken, but as late as in 1586 an Estonian village was known as Laxe (Johansen 1933 : 606). In LCD (c. 1250) another village appears as Kallax (Johansen 1933 : 398).

Names ending in -lax and noted before 1600 occur in 14 places within the Swedish region east of Hanko. Of these only four were registered as village names before 1525, viz. Kokelax (1451) and Hapalax (1417) in Espoo, Ijdelax (1414) and Sarffuelax (1473) in Perna. All seem to have been applied to bays, originally.

Kokelax (Koklax, Kiokelax, later also Kauklahti) seems to have been the name of an elongated bay (c. 10 km) and R.-L. Pitkanen's paper derives it from the Finnish word kauka, alleged to mean 'long'. Actually the word means 'distant' in the context of space, and 'long' only in the context of time. Further, there is no indication that the name was ever pronounced [kauk-] before the Finnish Kauklahti-version was introduced (probably by analogy with the haukka/hok 'hawk' pair some time in the 19th century). Extant manuscripts from the 12th century prove that the diphthong au had been replaced by o in Swedish well before the year 1200. Words borrowed later than that would have preserved the diphthong, as, e.g. in Haukas and Haukipaa. Thus, it is by no means certain that Kokelax derives its origin from Finnish kauka. An Estonian (or even a half-Swedish) origin is also possible. There is, for instance, an Estonian word kauk or kok 'hook, pickaxe', that would be more likely as part of a solitary toponym than any word meaning 'distant'. (The latter would imply a counterpart meaning 'near'.)

The name Hapalax (now Hoplax) can be derived from the Finnish/Estonian word haapa/haab, 'aspen'. It is not known whether the name originally signified the large bay now called Laajalahti or the smaller bulge from Laajalahti named Iso-Huopalahti. Neither is it possible to determine if the name is originally Finnish or Estonian.

It is the same with the estate-name Sarffuelax (now Sarvlax) farther east. Probably it was originally applied to a large bay, Hormnasfjarden that (since the 15th century) has the shape of a horn (of a bull) and the Finnish and Estonian word sarvi/sarv means 'horn'. Abutting on the estate there is also a lake that always has been shaped as a horn. The proposed Finnish etymology *Sarvalaksi is not very likely, since the word sarva means 'reed', a plant that is ubiquitous in all Uusimaa waters and, therefore, not distinctive of any bay or any part of a bay. The name Sarvlax could just as well derive its origin from Estonian as from Finnish.

Finally, the name Ijdelax (later Idelax, Jddelax, Idlax, etc.) appears to be derived from the Finnish/Estonian word ita/ida, 'east, eastern'. The name is applied to a village near the bay Fasarbyviken on the western side of a large peninsula. Such a bay would normally be called "West-bay" by the resident population. Those traveling by sea, however, would consider the bay as protruding from the eastern side of the large bay called Lillpernaviken. Non-resident fishermen navigating in these bays would, therefore, find it natural to call such a bay "East-bay". The supposedly Finnish residents would hardly have called the bay "Eastbay" in their language. But if they had, they would probably have used the form Idanlaksi, since the word ita is found in the genitive case in old Finnish toponyms, e.g. Idansyrja (Finlands medeltidsurkunder 1924 : 81) and Idenpaa (Suomen historian lahteita 1892-1956 : 16). It is quite unlikely that the name Idlax was given by resident Hame-Finns. Nothing tells against the theory that the name was given by Estonian fishermen, seasonally moving about in the archipelago.

As noticed above, all the other names ending in -lax are recorded only in 1525 or later. Since a considerable number of villages are mentioned (several times) in extant documents of earlier date, it is obvious that practically all the villages in Uusimaa that existed in the 13th century are among those recorded before 1525. The following villages with names ending in -lax are, therefore, likely to have been settled some time after the environment had become demonstrably purley Swedish: Rilax (1540) in Kirkkonummi, Rilax (1540) in Espoo, Pirlax (1540), Seijtlax by (1540), Wogelax (1548, later Voglax, Vaglax, Valax, etc.), Kalax (1548) and Varlaxby (1540), all in Porvoo, Marttelax (1526), Masselax (1532, later Metslax, Messlax, Mestlax, etc.) and Serkelax (1525) in Perna.

Even if these names obviously do not indicate any pre-Swedish settlement, it may be of some interest to analyse their origin. The names Seitlax and Valax are still used, not only as village names but also (with the addition of -fjarden 'bay') as names of two large bays, six and two km in length. These bays (together with a narrows called Fladan) form one of the approaches to the Porvoo River. The bays are separated from each other by the island Ramsholmen. Between Ramsholmen and the mainland there is a small holm called Palsholm, a Swedish name that means 'Fur (coat) holm'. The first part of the name does not make sense, and is, therefore, likely to be a misrepresentation of some other word. There is no Finnish word fitting, but the Estonian word pealsed 'leaves, tops, haulm; uppers' may perhaps have been associated with what was once a shallow reminding of the sill of a lock for those entering the Seitlax bay. At least pealsed sounds somewhat like pals.

The name Seitlax is not likely to derive its name from any Finnish word, at least not from the word saitta 'pole', as has been suggested. The diphthong ai was generally preserved in loan names, e.g. Kaitans, Aisarn, Haiko, Paipis, and no reason for an exception in this case has been provided. Admittedly, the diphthong ei is rare in Estonian, but, on the other hand, there are words containing the diphthong oi, such as soit 'journey, voyage' and soitl ik 'navigable'. Since the vowel o does not occur in Swedish, it is always substituted by another vowel in loanwords. An Estonian *Soit(lik)laks 'the navigable bay' (or maybe 'the short-cut bay') would, therefore, become, e.g. Seitlax in Swedish. The name would make sense, because the field of reeds blocking up the inlet Fladan just north of Seitlaxfjarden may leave uninformed sailors in doubt whether the fairway through the bays is navigable or not. (It is, even today.)

The southern part of the same fairway, Valaxfjarden, east of Ramsholmen and Palsholmen, would reasonably have been called *Vooglaks by the same sailors who supposedly invented the name *Soitlaks. Since they obviously spoke Estonian, they must have made up the name from Estonian voog '(set of) current'. A name meaning 'bay with current' would make sense as well, because a certain amount of current is almost always noticeable in this bay (because of its peculiar topography). The first part of the name is not likely to be derived from any Finnish word, since long o is unusual in Finnish (except in loan words). The Estonian long o corresponds to Finnish uo, which is rendered in Swedish as u or o, not as a (e.g. Ruona > Runa, Luoto > Lotan) (Pitkanen 1995).

It may be added that the village situated between Seitlax and Valax bears the name Fagerstad, which is a typical Swedish Iron Age name. It was first mentioned in 1404, but it must be much older than that. Actually, almost all villages in the archipelago of Porvoo and Perna, which are noted in 14th or 15th century documents, have Swedish names (ending with -by, -bole, -garden, etc.). This indicates that the Swedes are likely to have been the first settlers in the neighbourhood, even if they were not the first users of it. The non-resident users certainly needed descriptive names of the bays and islands among which they moved about.

It is possible that all the names ending in -lax were intended to be descriptive, even if we cannot prove it any more. In many cases it is also impossible to find out whether a certain name is of Finnish or Estonian provenance. Therefore, let us analyse just two more of the -lax names, viz. Mestlax and Kalax. Mestlax was first noted as Masselax (1532). There are 13 references to this place before the year 1550, and of these 12 have the vowel -e- in the first syllable, followed by -tzs- in seven cases and -dz-in two cases. There are three spellings with -ss- and one with -sz-. Later -tz- and -ss- alternate, finally to be replaced by -st- in 1588. It is obvious that this name was pronounced like the Swedish words natsla and vatsla in the beginning of the 16th century. When these words changed into nassla and vassla (Bergman 1968), the Mets- followed suit. Finally, the form Mestlax was created after the pattern of words like nastla (a verb from the root natsla).

Considering the phonetic history of the name, its origin seems to be the Estonian mets 'forest', not the corresponding early Hame-Finnish word that was pronounced [meth:a] (4). The sound [th] in Swedish changed into [t] before the year 1500, and the word 'forest', if borrowed from Hame-Finnish, would have become *metta in Swedish. However, Mestlax has never been spelt Mettlax. Also in the Hame dialect, the [th] changed into [t], and there is a toponym Mettala in Elimaki Parish (where this dialect is spoken). Standard Finnish adapted the Estonian ts instead, which led to the corresponding pronunciation [ts].

Obviously the name Mestlax cannot be of Hame-Finnish origin, and it is, therefore, likely that it was given by Estonians.

The name Kalax (1548) must have developed from a longer original form, e.g. *Kahalaks, since there is no word kaa in either language. The Finnish word kaha means 'basket, box, tub, sieve', and thus it is not likely to be used for characterising a bay. The Estonian word kaha, on the other hand, occurs inter alia in the compound kahatee 'crossroad'. The Estonian name *Kahalaks would, therefore, mean 'Fork-bay'. Actually, the name is borne by a village lying next to the bifurcation of the long bay Lillpernaviken, the outer part of which surrounds a large island, Sarvsalo. Moreover, this part of Lillpernaviken is called Korsfjarden in Swedish, i.e. 'Crossroad Bay' or 'Fork-bay'. The suggested original form *Kahilalaksi is less likely for two reasons. The word kahila means 'reed', and as noted above, this plant is extremely abundant and, therefore, not distinctive of Lillpernaviken or of any part of it. Also, the local dialect would probably have retained the vowel -i- in kahila, thus producing the form *Kailax (cf. Haiko, Paipis). No such form has been seen; instead there are two examples of the spelling Kahalax (Allardt 1925 : 56). The suggested ethymology for Kalax should be considered as a counterpart of the one proposed further on for Tervik.

The names Pirlax and Serkelax are derived from words common to Finnish and Estonian and may be left at that. The name Marttelax, for once, appears to have been derived from a Finnish word, viz. merta 'fish trap'. At the same time, it is worth noticing that the LCD includes a resembling name, viz. Martaekilae. Obviously, there remains some doubt about the provenance of Marttelax, after all.

In a few words: none of the names ending in -lax has been shown to be exclusively Finnish or to indicate an early human settlement at all.

Between the bays there are headlands, and the names of a few villages indicate that some headlands once had Finnic names ending in -paa (or -pea). These village names are Harckepaby (1540), Karepa (1448) and Pickepa (1473), all in Perna. There are also a couple of -paa names attributed to headlands without settlement. The oldest is Cuminpe, noted in the "Itinerary" included in the LCD (Finlands medeltidsurkunder 1910 : 41) and assigned to Hangethe, i.e. the Hanko Peninsula The ending -pe obviously stands for paa 'end', 'tip' or 'head'. Cuminpe therefore must refer to the very tip of the peninsula and not to the nearby harbour, Kappelhamnen (never noted for any Finnic name). This is on a line with scores of names in the LCD-itinerary that denote places totally unsuitable as harbours--beside the many good harbours that are also in the list. Cumin- may be interpreted as the Estonian word kumin corresponding to Finnish kumina 'roar(ing)', but it could also be an old genitive of the Estonian word kuum 'foam'. The tip of the Hanko Peninsula was certainly known as both roaring and foaming in the Middle Ages so the name in itself does not tell us whether it was given by Finns or Estonians. What we know is that many Estonians (as also Estonian-Swedes) were seal hunters and made "ice-voyages" that could last several months (Bunge 1877 : 218; Russwurm 1855 : 29). The name Kooskanpee (1537) in the Aland archipelago (Hausen 1927 : 7) testifies to Estonians having reached at least that far, since the Finnish word koski means only 'rapids', while the Estonian word kosk stands also for 'stone dam' or 'sill' (in places other than rivers). The Hanko peninsula was one of the critical points on such voyages into the Gulf of Bothnia. People living in Finland certainly had less need to double the dangerous promontory.

There is also a headland in Kirkkonummi called Haukipaa, but this is not mentioned in any document dated before 1600. Haukipaa is, therefore, either a relatively recent Finnish name or a modern form of a name contemporary with e.g. Haukosma (1347) in Sipoo. The latter has never been etymologised, but it may be explained as an Estonian compound meaning 'bushy land' (from haukas 'bushy'). Haukipaa could thus be a modernized Finnish form of an ancient *Haukospaa, 'the bushy head (headland)'. At least, such an etymology makes more sense than the present form that means 'pike's head'. This, in its turn, certainly makes to-day's leisure fishermen feel at home.

The name Harckepa (locally pronounced and spelt Harpe) is a compound meaning (literally) 'bull's head' in Estonian and Finnish. The Finnish word, however, is used in a figurative sense, same as the English mule, 'mulish person'. The village of Harpe is situated at a bay enclosed by two "horns". When referring to some part of the body of a bull or something shaped as such, Finnish prefers the genitive (with -n-) of harka 'bull', as in the toponym Harjanwadza (1514) in Karjalohja (a parish constantly settled by Finns). Estonian place-names, except the very oldest, usually lack the letter -n- between the two words forming the name, e.g. Haapsipaa, Harjapaa, Kanapaa, Kirapa, Otepaa (Kettunen 1955).

The name Karepa (1448) is found already in 1405, although then in the form Karpa and used as a personal name. Finnish kaare means 'bandage, bundle', hardly a likely word to be used to characterise a headland. Instead, the Estonian language offers two phonetically appropriate words fitting as parts of names of natural features, viz. kaar 'bend, curve' and kaard 'headland formed between two streams that meet'. Accidentally two bays meet and form a headland quite close to the village Karpe. By chance, the name was spelt Kardepa, Kierdepa and Kiaredepa in four different deeds 1552-1557. The Estonian name *Kaardpaa would mean something like 'Promontory-hill', since paa in Estonian also means 'hillock', and, as a matter of fact, there is a hill on the very point of the headland in question. The Estonian origin seems much more likely than the Finnish one.

Finally, there is the name Pickepa, locally pronounced [pippe]. This name was alternately spelt Picke- and Pidke- (or Pitke-) in the 20 oldest documents (1473-1550). After that the spelling with -tk- (-dk-) became more and more prevalent, despite the spoken name tending towards Pippe. (The scribes were apparently influenced by their knowledge of Finnish.) It is obvious that the name was applied to a long peninsula that existed some centuries ago, before the uplift connected one of its sides to the mainland. The Finnish word pitka means 'long', while the corresponding Estonian word has taken the form pikk in some dialects, albeit not in North-Estonian. Anyway, the early instances of the spelling Pick- indicate that the name is a little more likely to have been given by Estonians than by Finns, who even have a word pikku 'little'--almost the opposite meaning of pikk. (In the parish of Lohja, at all times Finnish, the name Pitkaa bol (1553) was spelt with -tk- from the beginning until 1580. Thereafter Pitka alternates with Pickae, Picka and the like, which apparently reflects an increasingly slipshod pronunciation by the Finnish inhabitants).

Thus, we find that the names ending in -paa neither show characteristics that are exclusively Finnish nor indicate an early settlement. Like the former group of names they were certainly applied to natural features long before they became village names.

Let us now turn to the old names ending in -sal and -sar(i). These are Hacksall and Emesall in Porvoo, Kiffsall, Possall and Sarvesal in Perna, Sinisarij in Sipoo, Hirffuisal in Kirkkonummi, and Vecke saar in Snappertuna. It is beyond dispute that the element sal comes of Finnish/Estonian salo/salu. The word has several senses, but in the Uusimaa toponyms it is used only to denote wooded islands. The word saari/saar stands for 'island' in general.

The main fairway from the open sea to the mouth of the Porvoo river is much broader than the one through Valaxfjarden and Seitlaxfjarden, discussed above. The sailor who approaches the river mouth along the main fairway sees a small and a big island on his left hand and a still larger island on his right hand. The small island was called Hacksall holme in 1555 (later also Hackesarij, Haxalo, etc.) The big island that follows Haxall is named Emsalo (Emesall 1531). These names may possibly be derived from the Estonian hakk-saar and eem-salu, meaning 'beginningisland' and 'farther-away-island', respectively (there is no Finnish counterpart to the Estonian word hakk 'beginning'). It is less likely that Emesall comes of the Finnish word aima 'coarse needle', since the vowel a occurs in genuine Swedish names as well as in loan-names (e.g. Isnas, Karepa) and is, therefore, likely to be preserved when it occurs in the stressed syllable of a loan-name. Besides, there is nothing especially needlelike about Emsalo. Still, these etymologies make sense only when considered as a pair. The large island on the right hand of the same fairway is called Vessolandet (Weszoo 1556), locally pronounced [vesula:nde]. This could be a semi-translation of a hypothetical Estonian *Vesu-maa (with maa 'land'), in its turn an ellipse of a *Vesu-kasi-maa 'right-hand-land'. The Estonian word vesu means 'leaf-sickle', but the compound vesu-kasi (with kasi 'hand') was formerly used in the meaning 'the right hand'. These three toponyms provide good examples of the special "navigational" name-typology envisaged above.

The village Saruesalby (1540) has apparently borrowed its name from the large island Sarvsal(o) in Perna, thereby getting this island-name into the rolls. The local pronunciation is [sarvsal], and the name is clearly composed of sarvi/sarv 'horn' and salo/salu 'wooded island'. A circumnavigation of the island will convince any normally observant person that the island has the shape of a bull's horn. Fishermen from far away may be a little more keen on such explorations than residents, but certainly even Hame-Finns would have noticed the horn-shape--provided some of them had lived there. They would hardly have named this big island after any water-based meadow (sarva) as suggested in R.-L. Pitkanen's paper (2001 : 58).

Pasalo, first mentioned as Possall (1545), is a small island mostly consisting of a moraine ridge. A thin clump of pine trees forms the natural vegetation on this ridge. These trees, always exposed to the breeze, would have provided an ideal natural rack for hanging out fishing-nets to dry. The obsolete Estonian word poos means precisely 'hanging up' and the local pronunciation of the name is [pa:ssal]. There is no good Finnish etymology for the name, a proposed Paasi-salo 'flat rock island' would not have developed into Pasal, because the local dialect has preserved the ancient sound [a:] in names that do not contain identifiable Swedish words (in which [a:] was transformed into [a:]). Thus, certain old toponyms in Porvoo are still pronounced [ka:laks], [ka:dra], [ka:rsby] and [va:rlaks], just as they always were.

Kejvsalo, first called Kiffsall (1540, later Keuesal, Keijffuesal, Kieffsall, etc.) is the name of a sizeable (6 km), but rather barren island with only a single plot. Various vriters have proposed the etymology *Kivisalo 'stone island'. This is improbable for two reasons. There is no example of a change from [i] to [ie] or [ei] in the dialect, and the island is not especially rich in stones. The marshy moraine that abounds would rather suggest a derivation from Estonian kehv 'meagre'. The un-Swedish sound [ehv] is likely to be substituted by [e:v] or the dialectal [eiv] when taken over by Swedes.

The small island now known as Simsalo was formerly noted as Sinisarij (1572) and Sinnsari, Sinsar, etc. Only in the 18th century the letter -mwas introduced instead of -n-. The substitution of -sal for -sar must have happened earlier. The Finnic word sini means 'blue' and 'Blue-island' is therefore the obvious interpretation. The only objection is that there is nothing specially blue about this very ordinary wooded island. Therefore, we cannot totally ignore the fact that there is an old Estonian word sinid, meaning 'flax'. Since the Swedes, for some reason, have called a neighbouring island Linholmen, 'Flax-island', Estonian visitors might, of course, have done the same. These two islands could perhaps have served some purpose in connection with the Estonia-Uusimaa flax trade in the 16th century (Neovius 1897 : 24).

Hirsala, originally Hirffuisall (1540, later even Hirffuisaar), is also a rather small island (2 km), where certainly deer or roe (hirv in Estonian) may have been seen just as well as elk (hirvi in Finnish). The Estonian word formerly ended in a vowel, cf. Hirve (1410), Hirwekylla (1693) (Johansen 1933 : 364). Since the elk is a more imposing animal than the deer, the Finnish etymology is a little more likely, at least when regarded independently.

The island name Vecke saar oo (1540) later became Vexar, Veckesaar, etc. and finally Vaxar. The etymology is obscure and Finnish and Estonian provenance seem equally probable. The same may be said about Karffuesarhe (1410), 15 km east of Hanko (nowadays called Koverhar).

From the sal- and sar-names we now turn to the purported joki-names. According to R.-L. Pitkanen there are four topnyms containing the Finnish word joki 'river, stream', i.e. Tervejoche (1421) and Rikesby (1540) in Perna, Norikesby (1540) and Ylikesby (1540) in Porvoo; later on named Tervik, Rike, Norike and Ylike.

Since at least the 1920s various authors have derived the manorial name Tervejoche from Finnish terva 'tar' and joki 'river'. This would mean that the assumed (Hame-Finnish) name-givers had used the word joki to designate an insignificant brook--the only stream about the place. However, no example of such usage in Hame has ever been presented. Brooks of this size are normally called puro or oja in Finnish. Also no reason has been given why the brook would have been connected with tar. In 1974 the present writer proposed another etymology for Tervejoche, based on the Estonian words terve 'whole, undivided' and jogi 'river', where the "river" referred to was supposed to be the large bay Storpernaviken (Nordling 1974). This is not bifurcated like its neighbour, Lillpernaviken, and the word jogi was actually used not only for rivers, but also for such large bodies of water as the Gulf of Finland (Ida-pohja-jogi 'East-northriver'). In the Middle Ages the Tervik manorial estate was the administrative centre of the bay population, and the name of the local parish priest in 1404 was Helwik (Finlands medeltidsurkunder 1915 : 40), which means 'whole bay' in Swedish. The derivation from terve 'undivided' should be considered as a counterpart to Kalax from kaha 'divided', proposed above as a possible original Finnic name of Lillpernaviken. If non-resident fishermen coined all the Finnic toponyms chiefly as aids for navigation--as assumed here--they would certainly have needed names for these two large bays as well. It is noteworthy that even the Swedish namegivers have treated the bays as a pair, distinguishing their names with Stor- 'Big-' and Lill- 'Little-'.

The element Rike in Rikesby has been suggested to be a curtailment of an original *Riihijoki 'kiln-river'. Again no river of any size has been identified. Threshing kilns were, of course, ubiquitous in those days, and there must have been several along every real river. Since most toponyms in Perna are Swedish, there is no reason to suspect a Finnish origin for a name that lacks specific Finnish traits. The element -rike occurs in decidedly Swedish names, such as Soderrike (1433) in Espoo and Narike in Sweden. In this case we should also consider the fact that Rike was a personal name (surname or byname) in the Middle Ages (Registrum ecclesiae aboensis 1890 : 358).

R.-L. Pitkanen (2001 : 57) derives the name Norike [na:rike] from the Finnish words naara 'grapnel; drag net', and joki. Also in this case there is no river, and the nearest brook is trifling and does not distinguish itself in any way among the hundreds of brooks in the Swedish parishes. Besides, the local dialect has preserved the ancient sound [a:] as such in unfamiliar toponym parts, as noted above.

Finally, there is Ylike, supposedly from an original *Ylijoki 'Upper River'. Again, there is no river, and none of the brooks in the neighbourhood would deserve to be called "upper". Actually the villages of Norike and Ylike are neighbours and the only ones with names ending with the element -ike (save Rike). This suggests that the names were intended to form a pair (like, e.g. Storpernaviken and Lillpernaviken, Mallorca and Menorca, North and South Carolina, Dakota, etc.). If we assume that the names were created by Estonians it is easy enough to find a suitable etymology. The Estonian words noorik and ulga(v) mean 'maiden' or 'newly wedded woman' and 'bridegroom', respectively. There is also a word ulik 'headman' in some dialects. The Finnish equivalent of ulga is ylka 'bridegroom', thus a quite acceptable origin of Ylike. The Finnish word nuorikko 'young mother' is not, however, a natural counterpart to ylka. Also, it would not have developed into [na:rike] in Swedish, since -uo- normally becomes [u:] or [o:], as noted above. Toponyms reminding of Norike and Ylike occur in Estonia as well, e.g. Noorekle and Ulgabe (Kettunen 1955).

The names ending in -jarvi 'lake' and -koski 'rapids' naturally belong to places at some distance from the waterfront. Many of such names in Uusimaa were recorded after the year 1500 and belong to places more than 15 km from the coastline. These names probably stem from the colonisation of northern Uusimaa by Hame-Finns in the 15th century. The remaining eight names call for a more careful consideration. At their first occurence they were noted as follows: Saffuijerffui (1382, 9 km from the coast) in Sipoo, Kirveskoski (1471, 15 km), Loffkoski (1530, 12 km), Ninekoskeby (1540, 15 km) and Walckijerffui (1382, 15 km) in Pornainen, Wekkoske (1413, 8 km) and Vekierff (1539, 3 km) in Porvoo and Kusekoske (1455, less than 5 km) in Perna. Regarding the form of the names, all could be of Finnish just as well as of Estonian provenance. That means that either Finns or Estonians seem to have been inhabiting, or at least exploring, the coastal zone of eastern Uusimaa when the Swedes settled there. Other evidence must be used for tipping the scale between the two peoples.

Among such evidence is the toponym Piaputtis (1414, later Pohaepott, Pepott, etc.) in Porvoo. The name Pohaepott may have been derived from the Estonian word pohi 'shoal, shallows'. The village in question is situated near the mouth of the Porvoo river and it could very well have borrowed its name from some of the shallows in this mouth (these shallows were blasted away in the early 1880s). The Finnish etymology based on the word pyha 'holy' (this word is common to Finnish and Estonian) is less likely, because words of religious import are not used in other toponyms in this area. Besides, the latter part of the name does not signify any of the traditionally holy objects: groves, springs and boulders.

A special group of place names are those that contain the ethnic designations Finn-, Est- and Tavest-. There are about twenty of them. Naturally, such names were given by the dominant Swedish population to designate places inhabited by some ethnic minority. At first sight, one would perceive the element Tavest as identical with the Swedish word tavast 'Hame-Finn' (hamalainen in Finnish). There is, however, a slight difference. The names Tavastehus and Tavastland (referring to Hameenlinna and Hame) were mainly spelt with the letter -a- in the second syllable already in the 14th century. The Tavest-names in Uusimaa recorded in the 15th and 16th century are spelt with the letter -e- in 62 percent of the cases (-i- 20 % and -a- 18 %). This is in accordance with the local pronunciation of the word and also with the spelling used in the ancient chronicle Erikskronikan (c. 1335). The latter mentions the people in question three times, and in each case the metre requires stress on both Tav and est, thus indicating that the word may be a compound with the word est 'Estonian' as its second element. Erikskronikan describes the Swedes' confrontation with the heathen Taffwesta about 1240 after the Swedish Marine Corps (ledung) had landed at the coast (s. Erikskronikan 1921). As the present writer has shown elsewhere (Nordling 1976), it is very likely that the landing place was the mouth of the Porvoo river and that a group of Estonians (called Tavesta) were living in this region already in the 13th century (the word tavast that lacks even a partial ethymology may be a corruption of an original tavest). It seems quite possible that small Estonian settlements could have existed already before the large-scale Swedish colonisation. In any case, the Estonians certainly had free access to the coast of Uusimaa during many centuries. Even if their main interest was fishing, they would hardly have forgone to make occasional hunting, berry-picking and crayfishing expeditions a little bit inland. The old toponyms ending in -jarv and -kosk could, therefore, very well be given by Estonians. Consequently, and since there is no other evidence for the early presence of Hame-Finns, the -jarv and -kosk names do not prove the existence of a settlement of Hame-Finns before the Swedish colonisation.

Just as there are Finnic names a few kilometres from the areas used by fishermen, the LCD-itinerary lists Finnic names of places equally distant from the villages inhabited by farmers. Eastward from the above mentioned Cuminpe/Hangethe by way of Lowicsund (a Swedish name) we come upon Karienkaskae. This seems to be a misspelling for Karienkeske 'Between-skerry', an equivalent of Swedish Mellanskar, the present name of a certain skerry situated between other skerries. Mellanskar lies on the very place where we would expect to find the Karienkeske. The following place on the list is Juxarae, later called Jusar (1547), that may originate from the Estonian compound juuk-saar meaning 'island with muddy sand or sludge'. A less likely dervitation would be juka-saari or juga-saar, the initial part of which means 'cascade' in Finnish and Estonian, but juga also forms a part of the word liiva-juga 'sandbank' in Estonian. (The long vowel of the first syllable is retained in the local pronunciation, [ju:ssa:r], although the written form has become Jussaro). The island Russaro south of Hanko is not listed in the Itinerary but its name may be contemporary with Jussaro and could be derived from Estonian ruus 'gravel'. Next comes an island with the double name Horinsarae/Hesto (nowadays Orslandet), the Finnic form meaning 'Stallion-island' and the Danish form 'Horse-island'. Finally, we have Purkal, later Porkall (1429). This name is difficult to associate with any known Finnish or Estonian topographic term. Nonetheless, similar toponyms occur in both Finland and Estonia, e.g. Purkuli (LCD) and Porkasaar, a peninsula in Lake Peipsi.

Obviously, the place-names in the LCD-itinerary do not prove that Hame-Finnish voyagers ever frequented this route, let alone settled in the archipelago.

Finally, a few words about the parish names, which are generally among the oldest place names known. The earliest source that mentions a name that was to become a parish name is the First Novgorod Chronicle (1311) where a river named Perna is noted in connection with a war raid against places on the southern coast of Finland in 1292 (Mikkola 1927). The river referred to seems to be the Forsby River, the only one in Perna. The next references to Perna, now as a parish, are from 1352, 1398 and 1404. Perna (1532) is the accepted Swedish form, while the Finnish name is Pernaja, a traditional form that suggests an original Finnic Pern-oja 'Linden-brook'. Rivers of this size are normally called joki in Hame-Finnish areas, e.g. Paliockij (1540) in Nurmijarvi and Vihtijoki in Vihti. The Estonians, on the other hand, who used the word jogi for as large objects as the Gulf of Finland, could be expected to use another word for a stream much smaller.

In Estonia toponyms with -oja or -aja as the last component are not uncommon, e.g. Liivoja, Mustaja, Riidaja (Kettunen 1955). Two other parish names seem to be of Finnic provenance, viz. Kariis (1326), later Karis, and Paya (1335), later Pojo. The former name is identical with the first element of Karisierffui (1539) in Pusula, but it also shows a marked affinity to such Estonian names as Karis (1688) (Johansen 1933 : 392), Kariael (LCD), Carias (LCD) and Kariscae (LCD). The origins of both Karis and Paya remain indeterminable. All other parish names are of Swedish provenance: Borga (1327), Sibbaa (1353), Jnga (1335), Siundo (1417), Esbo (1431), Kirkeslaeth (1330), Helsingaa (1351), Ekenas (1451), Lapptrask (1414) and Degerby about a century later (1540). The first five names were obviously river names before they became parish names. This indicates that the first Swedes in Uusimaa may have been farmers interested in river valleys, while the first non-Swedes obviously gave their attention mostly to bays and islands, as fishermen would do.

In summary, although there are many toponyms of undoubtedly Finnic provenance in the Swedish parishes along the southern coast of Finland, none of the demonstrably old names distinguishes themselves as exclusively Finnish. Almost every one of them could be derived from items in the Estonian vocabulary, and several show even slightly more affinity to Estonian than to Finnish, e.g. Teissala, Idlax, Vaglax, Pasalo, Norike and Tervik. The only exception is the name Hurskusnes (1544) in Snappertuna, which reminds of Hurskaala between Pieksamaki and Virtasalmi in Savo and also of the Finnish word hurskas 'righteous'. Even with access to spellings from the 14th and 15th centuries, we must realise that by that time the names had already been transferred orally through several generations and their pronunciation may have been blurred to a certain extent. The change does not necessarily follow simple rules. E.g. the Finnic word saar(i) demonstrably appears as -sar, -sar, -sar, -har and -sal in different toponyms. Also, we do not know exactly what changes the Finnish and Estonian words have undergone since the 13th and 14th centuries in order to arrive at the forms noted in the oldest dictionaries.

Therefore, a theory of the identity of the name-givers should not be based on linguistic evidence in the first place. Also, not only hypothetical residents should be taken into consideration in the name-giving situation, but also the possibility of occasional explorers, habitually visiting fishermen, etc. Taking into account all such factors, I propose the following as the theory that fits all the facts in the best way.

The soil of Estonia in the Iron Age yielded cereals enough to support a population of considerable size. At the same time the yield of fish from the few brooks and lakes must have been rather insufficient. In glaring contrast to the situation in the Hame lake district, fish was long considered a commodity in short supply in Estonia, as indicated by the stock phrase meil on leib kalaks 'we (have to) use bread as fish'. This would have led to the development of sea-fishing industry along he coast and on the islands. Sea-fishing off the unsheltered coast of Estonia requires sea-going craft and once such craft were available, the coast of Finland was within easy reach. This coast with its sheltering archipelago would have been the favourite fishing-grounds for many Estonian fishing parties--as it continued to be until the 18th century (Kuvaja, Rantanen 1994 : 392). But in order to navigate in this multifarious skargard (literally 'skerry-yard'), without pilots, charts and navigation marks, it would have been necessary to memorise and transmit reports of the distinctive traits of the islands, straits and bays that were essential for the orientation. Consequently, the Estonians would most probably have created toponyms meaning the so-and-so shaped or placed island, the divided bay, the undivided bay, and things like that. In other words, they would in all probability have used names of precisely the type analysed above, thereby diverging from the usual name-typology.

At some moment Swedes then began colonizing the coast of Uusimaa and called it Nyland (1310) 'New Land'. The colonisers certainly met Estonian fishermen and perhaps employed some of them as (much needed) pilots. Thereby they would have learnt the names of the most important bays and islands. In areas were the Swedes settled even before Estonian toponyms had been established (e.g. in the Snappertuna region) they may have named certain islands after their still worshipped gods, calling them e.g. Toorsbole, Torsoo, Odenso. Since there were no existing villages with established names, they had to invent their own names for the first set of villages to be built, e.g. Fagrastada (1404), Karsby (1382), Kulla (1332), Stensbola (1327), Westersundom (1347), Fassareby (1356), Myklebolstad (1427), Engelbigh (1347), Norbijggiom (1382), Norraby (1405) and Sudherby (1405), to name just a few typical village names in Uusimaa. To these settlers river valleys were more important than headlands, islands and skerries, so they certainly had to invent names for the rivers as well, notably Jnga (1335), Siundo (1417), Espa (1431), Helsingaa (1351), Sibbaa (1352) and Borga (1327). Obviously, the latter name was preceded by the building of the moated eartwork Borgbacken ('The Castle Hill'). An early administrative and commercial centre seems to have been called *Tuna, preserved as Snappertuna (1540, probably < *Hnappertuna 'Place of assembly') conforming to Swedish practice in pagan times (the provenance and age of the name Ultuna in Sipoo is unknown).

Since Estonia was only one day's journey removed, the Swedish settlers would have been likely to hire farmhands and maids from across the Gulf. This would have brought in its train Estonians setting up houses and hamlets. Such settlements would have been called e.g. Estebigge bol (1451 in Kirkkonummi) or perhaps Tafwistemaja (1414 in Lapptrask), provided that Estonians (or some of them) went under the name tav-ester at some stage (as has been argued, s. Nordling 1976 : 52-78). They may also have created their own village names, such as Randekila (1450), Moijsze (1540), Hentala (1542) and Tarkis (1548).

This assumed prehistoric influx of Estonians would have resulted in a genetically mixed Swedish speaking population, containing not only genes from the Hame-Finnish neighbours of a later age but also genes from the Estonians. As a matter of fact, it can be shown that the Estonian component is even more conspicuous than the Finnish one among the Uusimaa Swedes (Nordling 1993). The calculation is complicated, but a simple example will show the principle. The allele Gc1 occurs in a high proportion (c. 92 percent) among the Samis, less among the East-Finns (c. 81 percent) and still less among the Hame Finns (c. 79 percent). The proportion among the Estonians is only 72 percent (Nevanlinna 1973). The contributions of genes from the Hame-Finns and from the Estonians to the Uusimaa Swedes seem to have balanced each other, because the latter still show the same percentage as the Swedes in Sweden, viz. 74.

The above theory obviously brings a number of facts into a natural context and renders a number of seemingly rather nonsensical place-names finally to make sense. It entails, however, the idea of a somewhat special name-typology for the unusual case of naming places for the special purpose of navigation.


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(1) Whenever not otherwise indicated, all Uusimaa place-names quoted refer to Hausen 1920-1924. As a rule, the oldest form is quoted with the year of record given in brackets.

(2) If not otherwise indicated, Estonian and Finnish words are quoted from Wiedemann 1893, and Lonnrot 1874-1880, respectively.

(3) This work contains a host of Estonian place-names beside those in the LCD.

(4) Square brackets and letters with their sound values in Swedish are used to render the pronunciation whenever necessary. The sound in the middle of the English word method is rendered as [th] and as [th:] when long. Otherwise long consonants are rendered double, long vowels single followed by a colon.

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Author:Nordling, Carl O.
Publication:Linguistica Uralica
Date:Jun 1, 2004
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