UCL Logo

Versions Compared


  • This line was added.
  • This line was removed.
  • Formatting was changed.


Sami is the third Norwegian language. It is a number of related languages spoken by the indigenous populations of the Northern reaches of Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia.  Sami is a Finno-Ugric language, i.e. an Asian language and totally unrelated to the Germanic languages of Norway and Sweden or Indo-European Russian.  The Sami people have been subjected to a ruthless policy of norwegianization.  In the early 18th century a written norm was developed so they could read the Bible in their own language. (Originally they had a shamanistic religion). As norwegianization intensified Norwegian became the only language taught in their schools. Only in the late 1960s were Sami children taught in their native language.  These days you will see Sami subtitles on tv-programmes dealing with issues of special interest to the Sami population.

1. Riksmål (now old fashioned language)