The Faroe Islands (Faroese: Føroyar pronounced [ˈfœɹjaɹ], Danish: Færøerne Danish pronunciation: [ˈfæɐ̯øːˀɐnə], literally Sheep Islands) are an island group and archipelago under the sovereignty of the Kingdom of Denmark, situated between the Norwegian Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, approximately halfway between Norway and Iceland. The total area is approximately 1,400 km2 (540 sq mi) with a 2010 population of almost 50,000 people.
The Faroe Islands have been a self-governing country within the Danish Realm since 1948. Over the years, the Faroese have taken control of most domestic matters. Areas that remain the responsibility of Denmark include military defence, police, justice, currency and foreign affairs. The Faroe Islands also has representatives in the Nordic Council as members of the Danish delegation.
The islands were associated with and taxed by Denmark and Norway up to 1814, when Norway fell under the rule of Sweden. Scandinavia was in political turmoil following the Sixth Coalition of the Napoleonic Wars, when the Treaty of Kiel granted Denmark control over the Faroes, Iceland and Greenland in 1814. The Danish trade monopoly ended in 1856.