Helsingfors, a fortified seaport and naval station, capital of the grand-duchy of Finland, is situated on a peninsula, surrounded by islands and rocky cliffs, in the Gulf of Finland, 191 miles W. of St Petersburg by sea and 256 by rail. A series of formidable batteries, called the fortifications of Sveaborg, protect the harbour. Helsingfors is the largest and handsomest town of Finland; the broad streets intersect at right angles, and there are several fine parks and public squares. Of the public buildings the most striking are the house in which the diet meets, the senate-house, and the university buildings. The university, removed hither from Abo in 1828, has over 2500 students, a library of 300,000 volumes, a hospital, a botanic garden, and observatory. Helsingfors, truly 'a slumless city,' is a favourite bathing-place. It carries on trade in Baltic produce; exports timber, paper, and butter, and imports iron and steel goods, machinery, colonial wares, etc. Pop. (1870) 32,113; (1902) 100,812. Helsingfors was founded by Gustavus I. of Sweden in the 16th century. In August 1855, during the Crimean war, Sveaborg was bombarded, with no great result, for two days and nights by the allied fleet.