The history of iron, steel and cast iron from A.D. 1000 to 1900 is told from a Scandinavian point of view. The direct process as it was applied in Denmark, Norway and Sweden is thoroughly examined. The author´s slag-analytical method is used for che characterization and provenancing of ancient iron objects. A number of ancient Scandinavian terms are discussed and reinterpreted. The author´s results support present research tracing the roots of the blast furnace back in time to before 1200. The puddling period of the 19th century is thoroughly analysed with English material as examples. In a final chapter the explosive development in the steel industry after 1870 is briefly illuminated. The work is supported by numerous tables with chemical analyses and statistical information.