Falun seen from the
Falun (Swedish pronunciation:
Faluån is a river, flowing through the city, separating it into two sides. Falu copper mine is located on one of the sides which during many centuries was one of Sweden's main business. This side of the river was usually called "the mining side", where not many plants grew due to the toxic smoke which contaminated the soil. On the other side of the river, where the smoke did not reach, set many large villas, which made this side to be called "the delightful side". The centre of Falun consists of classical pedestrian streets with small shops. in 1998, the city reclaimed the award of "the city centre of the year" in Sweden.
The year 2001, the city, the copper mine and mining areas of Falun were added to the list of world heritage sites by the United Nations, which means that the city is worth preserving, as it is considered to be of interest for all of humanity. Dalarna University, with its 18 000 students, has a campus located in Falun - close to the national ski stadium where the ski world championship has taken place a number of times, including the last one in 2015.
The town of Falun is known to have existed in the 14th century as a market place for the surrounding lands. Mining for copper had been a local business since the mid-13th century, or possibly as early as 1000, and the organisation for the extracting of copper and gold from Stora Kopparberget is believed to be the oldest still-existing enterprise in the world, proved active since 1347, when its charter was granted by King
However, an enterprise at that time was nothing more than a cooperative among the owners, each contributing with a share of money for construction, tools, etc., necessary to run the organisation. Depending on their contributions they could use the facilities and share the profits in proportion to the relative sizes of their individual contributions.
The city of Falun received its privileges in 1641. By then Falun was already one of the largest cities in Sweden, with about 6000 inhabitants. Soon, however, the importance of the copper mine began to decrease. In 1687, parts of the mine collapsed in a