Today while I watched a few videos on YouTube I stumbled upon this interesting channel about the English language. There are as of now about 30 videos mostly on pronunciation and spelling.
Edit: I also just remembered that there is another channel that focuses on Latin and Greek root words, it might be of interest to someone.
Damn! I just LOVE Germanic languages!
(Sometimes I think I should specialise - it’d sure be one helluva lot easier than dabbling in exotics…)
Me too, when I started learning languages I was all for romance languages and I still do like them and all, but the Germanic languages have really started to grow on me, they have a “je ne sais qoui” about them. I guess it has to do with the fact that I live in a country where I belong to a “ethnic minority” and feel a bit disconnected form my compatriots even in my home country.
Interesting. So you’re one of the Swedish speaking Finns? Or is it one of the Finnish speaking Swedes…?
I remember meeting a Finnish girl in Italy who was a public prosecutor in Finland. I seem to remember her telling me that she had to speak Swedish as well as Finnish, because folks in her part of Finland who are prosecuted have a right for their whole trial to be held in Swedish (!)
(And she spoke English and Italian too - quite some dame that was.)
Yeah, I think the official term is Swedish speaking Finn (born in Finland but native Swedish speaker), I get confused myself with all the terminology. Then there is Swedes who are Swedish citizens but live in Finland. In Sweden, there are also Finnish-Swedes (Swedes with Finnish heritage (because of WW2 refugees). It is quite a mess.
If I were to venture a guess the woman you met in Italy was from or lived in Ostrobothnia or the around the Archipelago Sea. In fact, officially you are supposed get services in your native tongue wherever you are. However, the reality is quite different, in areas where Finnish is the majority language it is almost impossible or at least very unlikely. In the areas mentioned before the situation is reversed.
The Åland Islands is an interesting anomaly. I think culturally they are closest to being Swedes without being actual Swedes. The linguistic rights of Swedish speaking Finns is a hotly debated issue and some years back there was even a small but vocal movement for the independence of Åland Islands. The supporters of independence felt that their rights were in danger of disappearing.
“…If I were to venture a guess the woman you met in Italy was from or lived in Ostrobothnia or the around the Archipelago Sea…”
Yeah, it could have been. I don’t remember anymore - This was quite a few years back. We were on a month long course together at an Italian language school in (…) EDIT. She gave me her card when we left (you know, along the lines, hey, let’s stay in touch, etc - which of course never happens after holiday friendships.) I might even still have it somewhere, I don’t know.
Her first name was (…) EDIT. I don’t even remember the surname. She had dark brown hair, was slim-petite build (think Audrey Hepburn) average looking but extremely intelligent. She was a couple of years older than me. That’s about all I remember.
EDITED - a little too much personal info for a public forum, perhaps.
Another funny little side note about Swedish speaking Finns is that German immigrants are considered Swedish-Finns (at least historically). The most famous ones include Carl Ludwig Engel (redesigned Helsinki from a fishing village to a capital), Karl Fazer (Swiss-German founder of Fazer company). Then there is of course also Carl Gustav Mannerheim who was born in Finland near Turku, made military career in Russia before becoming President of Finland. He had as the name implies German heritage.
As a polyglot, it might be interesting to know that, according to Wikipedia (I know that’s why I write according to) he is said to have spoken Finnish, Russian, French, German, and English besides his native Swedish.
I seem to recall that he also knew at least some Polish, Portuguese and had a good understanding of Latin, which seems reasonable considering that polyglottery among the elite was more prominent hundreds of years ago.