Cal Interpreting & Translations (CIT) offers Finnish interpreters and translators with legal, medical and specialty experience, including criminal and civil matters, employee meetings, engineering, patent cases, labor disputes, immigration and more.
Although based in Los Angeles, CIT offers comprehensive Finnish language services including interpretation, translation and transcription, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, worldwide. Our interpreters and translators are native speakers who have been screened, certified, have provided credentials, field tested, and kept up to date with developments in both English and the Finnish language through means such as lectures, conferences, and travel. CIT’s Finnish language interpreters and translators possess in depth knowledge of the Finnish language, as well as of the culture and history of the Finnish people, allowing them to provide informed and complete interpretation and translation.
The Finnish Language
The Finnish language, also known as Suomi, is a member of the Finno-Urgic group of Uralic languages. It s spoken primarily in Finland and collectively, by approximately 5 million people. Outside of Finland, Finnish is spoken in Norward, Estonia, Canada and Russia. It is closely related to Estonian, Livonian, Votic, Karelian, Veps and Ingrian. Finnish has many loanwords from Indo-European languages, more specifically from Baltic languages, German and Russian. The Finnish language was written starting back in the 1500s, when a Lutheran bishop of Turku named Michael Agricola had translated the New Testament to Finnish, published in 1548. However, this is not the oldest recorded text, which is believe to be a birch-bark letter from Novgorod written in Finnic in the mid 13th century.
In the early 1800s, Finland had no official status; rather, Swedish was the primarily language used in Finland for education, government and literature. In 1835, a publication of a national epic poem based on Finnish folk tales called Kalevala increased Finnish national pride. Consequently, the Finnish started making their own language to be used in government and education. In 1863, the language achieved official status and in 1919, both Finnish and Swedish became official languages of the country.
In 1809, Finland became independent. Prior to that, it was part of Sweden. Starting in 1883, civil servants in Finland had to use the Finnish language for documents.
History of the Finnish Language
Researchers believe that the Finnish language stems from an area close to the Volga river and the Ural mountains, which is known as Russia today. Proto-Uralic is the most ancient related language to Finnish. It is estimated that this language was spoken between 2000 and 7000 years ago. It was later split into Proto-Samoyedic, which is still spoken by about 25,000 people in Northern Russia. It dates back 4000 years.
Grammar and Written Finnish
There are several letters in the Finnish alphabet that are only used in names and foreign loanwords, such as: B, C, F, G, Q, W, X, Z and Å. The stress in a word always falls on the first syllable. Vowels and consonants in Finnish can either be short or long. There are many types of vowels that fall into the category of either front, back or neutral vowels.
Fun Facts about Finland
- There are about 188,000 lakes in Finland
- Heavy Metal music is very popular
- Finland is ranked the happiest country in the world
- Unique Finnish sports include air guitar, mobile phone throwing, wife-carrying, mosquito hunting and swamp football
- Education is free throughout Finland, including higher education
- One can experience the Northern Lights, the Midnight Sun and Polar Night in Finland
- Angry Birds was created in Finland
- There are more saunas than cars in Finland