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A biography is a history of a person's life. In a biography you may find the names of family members. Many brief biographies on Swedish people have been published in collective works sometimes called biographical encyclopedias or dictionaries. These usually only include biographies of prominent or well-known Swedish citizens. Some biographies focus on specific groups, such as miltary officers, musicians or Protestant ministers. Due to the nature of compiling a biography, the information should be considered a secondary source. Use the information you find carefully because there may be mistakes.
Some examples of Swedish biographies are:
- Biographiskt Lexicon öfver Namnkunnige Svenska Män, Leffler and Sebell, Upsalla, 1836. See FamilySearch Catalog Link
- Svenskt biografiskt lexikon, (Swedish Biographical Encyclopedia), Stockholm, Sweden: Albert Bonniers förlag, 1918-. Up to 2011, 33 volumes have been published. Most of the volumes are available at the Family History Library as 948.5 D36s. Also available at the Family History Library on CD-ROMs.
- The Scandinavian Biographical Archives. New York, New York, USA: K.G. Saur, 1989. The second section contains Swedish and Finnish biographical information. Both sections are in alphabetical order.
- Minister Histories: Herdaminne. A herdaminne is a collection of personal histories of the ministers within a diocese, listing the earliest ones to more recent ones.The information generally includes birth date and place, marriage information, names of children, and other details about his life and death.
- Svenska män och kvinnor : Biografisk uppslagsbok (Biographies of well known Swedish men and women.)
- Karl xii:s officerare : Biografiska anteckningar(Short biographical notes of the officers who served under King Karl xii.)
Access to Biographies
Swedish biographical information can be found through many sources. The largest collections are of course in Sweden with the Royal Library, National or Regional Archives, and the University Libraries. There is a great digitization effort with The Runeberg Project to digitize Scandinavian literary sources.
The Family History Library has a great collection of Swedish genealogical biographies. They are generally found by searching for the locality you need in the FamilySearch Catalog and choosing the topic Biography or Genealogy. Remember to check the catalog at multiple jurisdictional levels such as: the parish, district, county, or country when you search for biographical information.