Why do they speak Swedish in Finland?

When did Swedish become an official language of Finland?

Though less than 10% of Finnish people speak Swedish today, the language was important in the country from the 16th century to the late 19th century. Swedish became one of the official languages of Finland in 1863.

Can a Swedish person understand Finnish?

The language of Finland belongs to a different family. Finnish is close to Estonian and Hungarian. Most people in Finland know Swedish, so the Finns can understand the Swedes, but most Swedes cannot understand Finnish. When we say understand, we must remember to distinguish between speaking and reading.

What religion is in Finland?

As of 2019 about 69% of the population were members of the main national church, the Lutheran Church of Finland, with just over 1% belonging to the second national church, Finland’s Orthodox Church. There are also Catholic, Jewish and Islamic congregations as well as numerous smaller religious communities.

Can you get by with Swedish in Finland?

Finland is a bilingual country according to its constitution. This means that members of the Swedish language minority have the right to communicate with the state authorities in their mother tongue. … Both languages can be used in all communications with the civil servants in such a town.

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Do I need Swedish in Finland?

Finland is officially bilingual. The language act states that it is “the constitutional right of every person to use his or her own language, either Finnish or Swedish, before courts and other authorities”.

Is Finnish closest to Swedish?

Many people assume that Finnish is closely related to either Swedish or Russian, as Sweden and Russia are both important neighbouring countries. However, that is not the case. Swedish and Russian are both Indo-European languages, whereas Finnish belongs to the Finno-Ugric branch of the Uralic family of languages.

How many Finns live in Sweden?

Today, approximately 450,000 first- and second-generation Swedish Finns live in Sweden, of whom about half speak Finnish. The majority moved to Sweden after World War II.

Can a German understand Norwegian?

No, not really. Although German and the Scandinavian languages have many similarities, they aren’t mutually intelligible. The Scandinavian languages and German share a common ancestry, but the split occurred a long time ago.

Do Swedish people understand Danish people?

Danish is largely mutually intelligible with Norwegian and Swedish. Proficient speakers of any of the three languages can often understand the others fairly well, though studies have shown that speakers of Norwegian generally understand both Danish and Swedish far better than Swedes or Danes understand each other.

Are the Finns Scandinavian?

Geographically, Finland could be considered Scandinavian and at one time was a part of the Swedish Kingdom. Most Finns are Lutherans, as Scandinavians used to be. However, Finnish is not a Scandinavian language and Finns are ethnically distinct from Scandinavians.

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