Meänkieli

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See also: meänkieli and meän kieli

English[edit]

English Wikipedia has an article on:
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Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From the native Meänkieli term meänkieli, from meän kieli (our language).

Pronunciation[edit]

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Proper noun[edit]

Meänkieli

  1. A language spoken by some 40,000–70,000 people mainly in Northern Sweden. It is a variant of Finnish with a structure and grammar similar to Finnish, but the vocabulary considerably influenced by Swedish.
    • 2006, Robert B. Kaplan; Richard B. Baldauf, Language Planning and Policy in Europe, →ISBN, page 242:
      The County Board of Education worked out simple textbooks in Meänkieli and started to promote the vernacular in mother tongue instruction (henceforth MTI). Meänkieli was perceived as a bridge between Swedish and St Fi.
    • 2005, Ulrich Ammon, Sociolinguistics: An International Handbook of the Science of Language and Society, Language Arts & Disciplines, →ISBN, page 1547:
      The Tornedalians call their speech meän kieli ("our language"). Meänkieli was banned from schools until 1992 (see Huss 1999, 80ff. for an historical outline). Since then, the Tornedalians' mother tongue has been taught alongside Swedish. The Meänkieli, however, is not often used in writing outside the schools.
    Synonyms: North Finnish, Torne Valley Finnish, Tornedalen, Tornedalen Finnish, (see usage notes) Tornedalsfinska

Usage notes[edit]

  • There seems to be no final agreement on what the language should be called in English: in addition to Meänkieli, the forms Torne Valley Finnish, Tornedalen Finnish, Tornedalen, Tornedalsfinska, and North Finnish are encountered.
    • The ISO 639-3 standard uses Tornedalen Finnish and Finnish, Tornedalen.
    • The speakers of Meänkieli themselves would not want to accept anything with Finnish or -finska in it, because they consider their language distinct from Finnish, even if the languages are largely mutually intelligible.
    • North Finnish is misleading, because it is also used to refer to all northern variants of Finnish as a group.
    • Tornedalen is not ideal either because it is the Swedish name for the Torne river valley, and geographical names are not normally used directly as names of languages in English.

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