Region, south-central Sweden. Stretching across the breadth of the country, it covers an area of 31,212 sq mi (80,844 sq km). Settled as early as the Stone Age, it was the original home of the Svear, a people who gave Sweden its name, and it was the political and cultural centre from which Sweden developed and later secured its independence. Its diversified economy includes agriculture, manufacturing, forestry, and mining.
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