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Mešnkieli

Mešnkieli, or Torne Valley Finnish, is a is a variety closely related to, and mutually intelligible with, Finnish. It is one of the five minority languages officially recognized in Sweden. Mešnkieli literally means "our language".

Mešnkieli belongs to the Finno-Ugric languages, and is chiefly distinguished by a lack of influence from modern 19th and 20th century standard-Finnish, in addition to, like the situation for Finland-Swedish in Finland and Karelian language in Russia, a set of words which are close loanwords from Swedish, for instance from the fields of Laws and governmental administration. Mešnkieli lacks two of the declensions used in standard-Finnish, the comitative case and the instructive case.

Mešnkieli is spoken by some 40-70,000 people in the Torne Valley in northern Sweden along the border to Finland, and additionally by the population on the Finnish side of the border. In Finland it is seen as a variety of the northern Finnish dialect.

There is also a dialect of Mešnkieli which is spoken around Gšllivare which differs even more from standard-Finnish.

See also: Sweden-Finns

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