Närpes / Närpiö


Närpes (Swedish: Närpes) is a Finnish city located in the province of Ostrobothnia in western Finland. Its neighboring municipalities are Kaskinen, Korsnäs, Kristiinankaupunki, Kurikka, Maalahti and Teuva. Närpes has 9,479 inhabitants (31 December 2019). More than 78 percent of the residents are Swedish-speaking.



The first mentions of the great parish of Närpes date back to 1331. The great parish of Närpes included large areas bordering the Great River in the south, Bergö in the west and Petolahti in the north.

At the beginning of the 18th century, the villages in the Närpes area were destroyed as a result of storms and robberies. Many residents fled across the Gulf of Sweden to Sweden at that time. In the late 19th century, Närpes was divided into smaller villages. The municipality of Närpes was founded in 1867. In 1973, the northern parts of Ylimarkku and Pirttikylä were annexed to Närpes. The municipality gained its current size in 1975, when the northern part of Pirttikylä became part of Maalahti.

In the 19th century, the Berga glass factory was located in Närpes, which was a large-scale industry in Swedish-speaking Ostrobothnia at the time.

Närpes became a town on January 1, 1993.

In Närpes and Kaskinen, the association of municipalities was voted on 18 November 2019. Närpes' council supported the union: yes, the votes won as expected 26–8, but the Kaskinen council rejected the union by 9 votes to 8.

Etymology of the name
In order to interpret the name, several explanations have been presented, the three most notable of which are based on Finnish-language material. The Närvijoki River flows from the former neighboring municipality of Jurva, which runs along the Närpes side under the name Närpiönjoki. Jurva also has a house called Närvä, which contains a personal name. In Elias Lönnrot's dictionary, Nervous and Nervous means sage or itch. The people of Jurva have used the names Närppiö, Närpöö, Närppöö, Närpes from the parish of Närpes. Based on these, the old name form Närvipää has been assumed, where the head is "cape". Lars Huldén has interpreted the name directly from the personal name Närppi, Närppinen. In the Swedish name, the s-appendix naturally combines with the Finnish personal name. Saulo Kepsu has presented a third theory: Närväjoki> Närvijoki ~ Närpijoki. Many river-ending names have evolved into io-ending, so the result has been Närviö ~ Närpiö. This name has become a village name borrowed and adapted by Swedish settlers in the Middle Ages to their own language.

The map published by the Finnish Literary Society in the 1850s was translated Närpiö/ Närpes. According to an article in Suomettare, the translation was considered incorrect and the opponents thought that the place was called Närpiö in Finnish.