This historical map of the northern part of the province of Västergötland, more specifically the chiefdom of Skaraborg, was published in 1780 by the surveyor Nils Morelius at the Lantmäteriet.
The many megalithic tombs have made the prehistoric era of the landscape famous, especially the Falbygden. At the lakes Anten, Mjörn and Hornborgasjön, all included on the map, settlements have been found from the Stone Age. Organic material such as charcoal and pollen has been analysed at these settlements and it has been established that people have lived at these lakes for at least 9,000 years (7,000 BC).
When our ancestors switched to farming during the so-called Neolithic period, a large number of dwellings were built in the Falbygden-Valle area in the centuries before 3,000 BC. Out of Sweden's 375 gorse farms, 260 are located in this area, most of them on Falan.
Many finds of gold and bronze objects indicate early contacts with surrounding communities. The history of Västergötland is characterised by the natural means of communication, where the forests in the south and north-east were obstacles, while the large lakes Vänern and Vättern, and the rivers Viskan, Ätran and Göta älv made early contacts with the outside world possible.
Finds from the Iron Age show lively contacts with the Romans in the centuries after the birth of Christ. To this period, and to the time after the fall of the Roman Empire during the Migration period 400-550 AD, the region's approximately 130 sites of gold artefacts are dated. This makes Västergötland the most gold-rich region in Sweden.
The population of Västergötland embraced Christianity early on, and has the oldest provincial law in Swedish - Västgötalagen, which is believed to have been compiled in the 1220s by lawman Eskil Magnusson. The region also seems to have had a relatively independent position in politics and culture in the early Middle Ages. In historical times, Västergötland's position as a border region with Danish Halland and Norwegian Bohuslän has played a major role in both peaceful trade and war.
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