Sites & cities that bear the name of Porvoo


Today in : Finland
First trace of activity : ca. 13th century C.E
Last trace of activity : today
Recorded names : Borgoa, Borgå

Description : Porvoo (Finnish pronunciation: ; Swedish: Borgå (About this soundlisten); Latin: Borgoa) is a city and a municipality situated on the southern coast of Finland about 35 kilometres (22 mi) east of the city border of Helsinki and approximately 50 kilometres (30 mi) of the city centre. It is one of the six medieval towns in Finland (with Turku, Ulvila, Rauma, Naantali and Vyborg), first mentioned as a city in texts from the 14th century. Porvoo is the seat of the Swedish-speaking Diocese of Borgå of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland. The Porvoo Old Town is a popular tourist destination, known for its well-preserved 18th and 19th century buildings and 15th century cathedral, the Porvoo Cathedral. The Old Town together with Porvoonjoki River Valley is recognized as historically and culturally significant as one of the National landscapes of Finland. Porvoo is internationally considered to be one of the most beautiful towns in Finland. The area of Porvoo has been inhabited since the Stone Age. In pre-historic times, the river Porvoonjoki was a route of commerce for Finnish tribal Tavastians who primarily inhabited the inland regions. The Tavastians also had some permanent settlements in the area, such as the village of Hattula (later Strömsberg), which was named after an inland Tavastian village. The original name of the river Porvoonjoki was possibly Kukinjoki. The name derives from the name of the trade vessel cog which was a common merchant ship in the Baltic Sea in medieval times. The early center of the area was Saksala, meaning "the place of the Germans", and deriving from the merchants who were trading in Saksala. Porvoo was colonised by Swedes in the 13th and 14th centuries after the so-called Second Crusade against Tavastians in 1249–1250. The colonisation was led by the Catholic Church and the kingdom of Sweden. The colonists originated from Svealand, and were provided with seeds, cattle and, tax exemption for four years. The oldest known written mentions of Porvoo are from the early 14th century. In circa 1380, Porvoo became the third town in Finland to be granted official town rights, after Turku in 1229 and Ulvila in 1365. However, it is also claimed to have been founded as early as 1347, which would make it the second oldest after Turku. Due to land rise and loss of shipping access, Ulvila lost town rights to nearby Pori in 1558.

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