Blekinge is one of the traditional provinces of Sweden (landskap), situated in the south of the country. It borders Småland, Scania and the Baltic Sea. It is the country's second-smallest province by area (only Öland is smaller), and the smallest province located on the mainland.
The name "Blekinge" comes from the adjective bleke, which corresponds to the nautical term for "dead calm".
Blekinge became part of the kingdom of Denmark at some point in the early 1000s - most likely 1026. Its status before then is unknown. It then remained a Danish province for over 600 years, and together with the provinces of Skåne and Halland, it made up the eastern part of the Danish kingdom where Scanian Law prevailed. As a borderprovince Blekinge was often raided and looted by Swedish troops during Danish-Swedish wars. In 1658 it was ceded to Sweden according to the Treaty of Roskilde and has remained Swedish ever since.
During the Danish era, Sölvesborg was the seat of the administration in the western part of the province and Kristianopel in the eastern part. Whereas the Lister Hundred belonged to Skåne. Notable castles during this period were Elleholm, Sölvesborg, Lyckeby and Avaskär. Towns in Blekinge with city privileges were: Ronneby (1387), Sölvesborg (1445), Elleholm and Kristianopel. After the Swedish takeover two new towns, Karlshamn (chartered in 1664) and Karlskrona (1680), were built, and the populations of Ronneby and Kristianopel were forcibly relocated to them. Karlskrona has for more than 300 years been the principal naval base in Sweden.
Hundreds (in Götaland incl. Blekinge called härad in Swedish, in Svealand called hundare) were the historical subdivision of a Swedish province. Blekinge's hundreds were: Bräkne Hundred, Eastern Hundred, Lister Hundred, Medelstad Hundred.