Namesdays in Sweden
The celebration of namesdays has been a tradition in Sweden since middle ages. The namesdays originates in the list of holidays celebrated in commemoration of saints and martyrs of the Catholic Church. During medieval times the namesdays were of little significance in the Nordic countries, except for the celebration of patron saints for various guilds.
A more widespread celebration of namesdays began in the 17th century, at first in the royal court and among aristocracy, but successively also among the general population. The Church of Sweden promoted celebration of namesdays over birthdays, as the latter was seen as a pagan tradition. From the 18th century and onwards the list of namesdays was modified in Sweden and Finland, but not in any other countries. Names used by the royal family was intruduced and then followed by other common names. In 1901 a comprehensive modernization was made to make list up to date with current names. The monopoly on almanacks, held by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, expired in 1972 and so did the official namesday list. Competing namesday lists began to emerge but the official list was still in general use until 1985. The present list with a wide acceptance was established based in 1993.
This is the last official Swedish namesday calendar (1901):