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Martin Andersson

Martin Andersson
Researcher in Agrarian History


My research concerns labour, population, and social structure in Medieval and Sixteenth-century Sweden.

I defended my Ph.D. thesis in history at Södertörn University in 2018, in which I studied various forms of migration in seventeenth-century Sweden. I found that the population was far more mobile than previously assumed, especially in the plains of Southern Sweden, but that most people did not move very far. I also studied urban in-migration, and how the state through legislation forbid emigration.

I am a researcher at the Division of Agrarian History at SLU since Autumn 2019. Here I led the research project "From slaves to servants: the institution of service in Sweden 1250–1600", the results of which is published during the spring of 2023. In this research project I studied how the employment of servants replaced slavery during the Middle ages, as well as the living standards and everyday subordination of servants up until the year 1600.

I am a visiting scholar at the University of Cambridge since 2021. My current research project, which is funded by the Swedish Research Council, is called "The labouring poor in Sweden, 1300–1600". One part of the project concerns the living conditions of landless people in Sweden during this era. The second part, which is based on taxation records and salary lists, studies the sixteenth-century population history and social structure, including the effects of the 1565 plague epidemic and the repeated bad harvests around 1570.


I am the course leader of the online course "Agriculture and society", which concerns the agrarian history of Sweden from the Middle ages up until the twentieth century.

Selected publications

Från trälar till tjänstefolk: legofolk i Sverige 1250–1600, Lund: Nordic Academic Press 2023.

Migration i 1600-talets Sverige: Älvsborgs lösen 1613–1618, Malmö: Universus Academic Press 2018.


@martinhist on Twitter


Researcher at the Department of Urban and Rural Development; Division of Agrarian History
Postal address:
Inst för stad och land
Box 7012
750 07 Uppsala
Visiting address: Ulls väg 27, Externt

Publications list: