Government Type: Republic
Total Area: 130,558 Square Miles
338,145 Square Kilometers
Location: Northern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea, Gulf of Bothnia, and Gulf of Finland, between Sweden and Russia
Language: Finnish 93.4% (official), Swedish 5.9% (official), small Sami- and Russian-speaking minorities
Finnish 93.4% (official), Swedish 5.9% (official), small Sami- and Russian-speaking minorities. The Finnish people take great pride in their language.Â Through the years they have resisted other nation's attempts to impose their language on them. Over 93% of the population speaks Finnish, a Finnish-Ugric language coming from a language family different from Scandinavian languages. It is closely related to Estonian. Finland recognizes Sami, the tongue of the indigenous minority Sami. English is popular as a second language. Swedish is the second official language, spoken by 6% of the population.Â Finnish is a hard language to learn because the same word is used for "he" and "she" and the articles "a" and "the" are rarely used.
The Finnish People
It is unusual to embrace when greeting people. Often one simply nods and says "hei" or "terve". To say goodbye, one says "hei heir" or "nakemiin". During introductions, the first name is used if it is informal, the surname if it is a more formal setting. Formal titles are reserved for formal events.
Where to find more out about Finland