Lars Levi Laestadius

Lars Levi Laestadius was born in 1800 in the municipality of Jäkkvik in Swedish Lapland and died in 1861 in Pajala on the Swedish side of the border with Finland, which was a Russian Grand Duchy during the nineteenth century. Laestadius was educated as a theologian and worked as a vicar in different municipalities in Swedish Lapland. He also contributed to scientific fields such as botany and ethnography, as well as linguistics and philosophy, and participated in the French La Recherche scientific expedition to Finnmark and Spitsbergen in 1838. He is best remembered as a revival preacher and the revival movement “Laestadianism” has become a central influence in the cultural heritage of Northern Norway, as well as Northern Sweden and Finland.

Lars Levi Laestadius Online (LLL Online)

The basic hypothesis of this project (LLL Online) is that Lars Levi Laestadius’s ideas are still useful to modern researchers, not only in religious history and theological contexts, but also in fields as diverse as the botanical, linguistic and ethnographic sciences. We also consider that the project contributes significantly to technological and conceptual advances in these fields, and to a broader understanding of the origin and history of some of the central ideas that have formed the contemporary North.

There have been many scientific studies of the Laestadian revival movement, but a broad scientific presentation of the whole range of Laestadius’s work has never been undertaken before. The aim of this project is to make available all the works of Laestadius and raise their profile, thereby opening up a significant field of cultural heritage in the North Calotte.

Project focus

Each of the following research aspects will be pursued from both historical and contemporary perspectives with regard to Laestadius’s Nachlass texts:

  1. Annotated transcripts of original publications/letters in the original language
  2. Translations into Finnish, Swedish/Norwegian, Sami and English, as available
  3. Texts existing only in Finnish and/or Sami to be translated into English
  4. Oral presentation of some of the material in selected northern dialects
  5. Development of pedagogical Resources
  6. Developing disciplinary and multidisciplinary research projects on the material