It has been difficult in the past to make an accurate history of Swedish literacy known in other countries. To make a population literate requires some form of organized instruction and a number of literacy campaigns. In Denmark and Sweden, the population remained nearly steady, the increase being spread over the rest of Scandinavia. The most noteworthy was Scandinavian popular poetry and, in particular, the oral and written popular literature of Iceland. Politics, through war and peace, has drawn its dramatic lines over the Swedish and Scandinavian map. The traditional form of popular education, conducted under the auspices of the Swedish Church, was relieved of a good share of its responsibilities by the system of school education decreed in 1842. If the Swedish model of popular education is accepted, it also means that the Swedish material can be used for setting up new models for literacy campaigns in the developing countries.