The saga regarding the settlement of Hordaland started off about 10,000 years ago. Most of this saga has been recorded in writing, not on paper, but on stone and on the earth in the forest and the marshes.
From 4,500 to 5,000 years ago most of Hordaland was a landscape of forest, right out to the coast and the islands. With our inner eye we can see old oak trees putting their stamp on the heat-loving deciduous forest.
The relationship between Bergen and its neighbouring districts, normally known as “Strilelandet”, has, over the centuries, given rise to greater conflicts than the contacts between any other Norwegian city and its nearest hinterland.
Bergen - our first royal residence city – has for centuries been Norway’s, and for long periods, Scandinavia’s biggest city. The historical monuments round the Vågen bay tell us that the city has been of national, historical significance.
Den kristelege lekmannsrørsla, den frilynde norskdomsrørsla og den politiske sosialradikalismen er ideologiske motpolar, men kulturelt og politisk er dei på linje – demokratiske folkerørsler.
The old Norwegian farmers’ calendar, the wooden calendar staff, follows the Norse system of reckoning time, and divides the year into a summer half, and a winter half.
It is in Hordaland County that we find the oldest traces of a folk music stemming from our national instrument, the Hardanger fiddle. And it is still this musical tradition which is characteristic of folk music here.