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madlike14Sunday 19th of September 2004 12:23:34 AM
WHAT DO YOU KNOW ABOUT ESTONIA??? - It's a very small country..and i just would like to know what do you know about it...
BananaJoeThursday 30th of September 2004 01:25:01 AM
What I konw about Estonia - * Estonia has joined the EU in May 2004

* The Estonian language is very similar to Finnish

* The Estonians and the Finns languages are the two "living relatives" of Hungarian - not counting the nearly extinct Uralic languages in Russia.

* I would like to visit Estonia one day :-)
madlike14Saturday 02nd of October 2004 03:46:34 PM
wohoo - great!You defenetly should visit estonia!It is a very beautyful country....and thank you for submitting your reply...
mtoomMonday 24th of January 2005 11:31:55 AM
- I know too that I plan on visiting it soon. Both my grandparents were born in Tallinn. My knowledge is very similar to that of Joe.
JadokesaTuesday 25th of January 2005 12:54:49 AM
- I know a bit, but not much. I should know more.

Highest place is Suur Munamägi (I think it was 218 metres high)
I think the area is about 41 000 km2
Largest lake is the Peipus lake (half of it is in Russia)
The largest towns are Tallinn (capital, 500 000 inhabitants), Pärnu, Tartu and Narva
If I'm correct, 67% of the people in Estonia are ethnically Estonians
The official language is Estonian (what else)
Estonia has many islands, the largest are Saaremaa and Hiiumaa
There has been Swedish villages in Estonia, with Swedish-Estonians, though the majority of them left Estonia around the time when the Soviet occupied Estonia (don't bring the Soviet up when you speak to me, please?), and went to Sweden - everyone who could prove that they spoke Swedish was allowed to become Swedish citizens
Sweden crushed evil Russians around year 1700 in Narva
Sweden built the unversity of Tartu (was it 1518, or am I totally wrong?)
Estonia has been under Sweden's regime quite a lot of time (vana hea Rootsi aeg)
There's a town called Elva, and elva in Swedish is eleven (ha ha)

I want to visit Estonia too. :(
Helen FlemingTuesday 25th of January 2005 05:21:03 AM
- [url=http://www.estonica.org/eng/lugu.html?kateg=73&alam=75&menyy_id=411&leht=1#2535]Estonia's[/url] area is about 45,000 km²
Väike Munamägi is 208 m high. [url=http://www.estonica.org/eng/lugu.html?menyy_id=726&kateg=10&alam=71&leht=2]Suur Munamägi[/url] is about 318 m high.
King Gustav II Adolf of Sweden founded the [url=http://www.ut.ee/english/general/history]University of Tartu[/url] in 1632.

KanadaeestlaneTuesday 07th of June 2005 05:15:37 PM
- I wouldn't say that all finno ugric languages in Russia are "nearly extinct" some have almost as many speakers as estonian...
Helen FlemingWednesday 08th of June 2005 12:36:30 PM
Uralic languages and their number of speakers - FINNO-UGRIAN GROUP

FINNIC BRANCH
Finnish (5,000,000)
Estonian (1,000,000)
Karelian (40,000)
Livvi (30,000)
Lude (5,000)
Livonian (9)
Ingrian (300)
Veps (6,000)
Vote (50)

SAAMI DIALECTS
Akkala Saami (8)
Inari Saami (400)
Kemi Saami (extinct since 1800)
Kildin Saami (800)
Lule Saami (2,000)
North Saami (30,000)
Pite Saami (20)
Skolt Saami (300)
South Saami (500)
Ume Saami (20)
Ter Saami (6)

MORDVIN BRANCH
Erzya (500,000)
Moksha (250,000)

MARI BRANCH
Hill Mari (50,000)
Meadow Mari (500, 000)

PERMIAN BRANCH
Komi Zyrian (250,000)
Komi Permian (100,000)
Udmurt (500,000)

UGRIAN BRANCH
Hungarian (14,000,000)
Khanty (13,000)
Mansi (3,000)

SAMOYED GROUP

NORTHERN SAMOYED BRANCH
Enets (50)
Nenets (26,000)
Yurats (extinct since 1800s)
Nganasan (600)

SOUTHERN SAMOYED BRANCH
Selkup (1,600)
Kamas (extinct since 1989)
Mator (extinct since 1800s)

[url=http://virtual.finland.fi/fin../../images/langua1_b.jpg]Geographical distribution of the Uralic languages[/url].

The classification of the languages can be argued about. The speaker statistics are provided by [url=http://www.helsinki.fi/~tasalmin/index.html]Tapani Salminen[/url] in 2003. The figures for many languages are still not quite reliable.

martingaleTuesday 14th of June 2005 08:46:41 PM
. - Estonia has a beautiful flag
Helen FlemingFriday 17th of June 2005 01:47:09 AM
- Thank you, martingale, I'm glad that you feel this way. I'm proud that the first Estonian flag was sewn together in my home town.
martingaleFriday 17th of June 2005 03:29:27 PM
. - It is amazing. How is it possible that there are languages spoken by fewer than 10 people? I heard about Livonian but what you write about -saami languages... How is it possible? Are those languages dying or are they being 'artificially' saved by teaching new-born children to speak them as native?

Helen FlemingFriday 24th of June 2005 11:22:38 PM
Livonian -
There is a number of reasons why native speakers cease to use their language and pass it on from one generation to the next.

There were thought to be close to 20 000 Livonians in the 13th century. In 1206, the Livonian Brothers of the Sword, a military order composed of German warrior monks, defeated the Livonians. Livonia became a confederation of lands that finally became part of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth after the Livonian War (1558-1583).

During World War I, the Livonians were in the way of the war. The German troops occupied Courland in 1915 and the Livonians were forced to evacuate and leave their villages. After the war many Livonians did not return. The number of Livonians dropped to 1,238 persons.

On the eve of World War II, with the occupation of the Baltic States, the Livonian coast became the western border of the Soviet Union. The beach was closed, barbed wire blocked access to the sea and the beach's sand was harrowed. The Livonians were evacuated from their homes and some families fled to Sweden.

The Livonians alike the other Baltic peoples suffered from the deportations to Siberia in 1949. All ethnic culture was suppressed.

After World War II the number of Livonians had decreased to such an extent that a language community able to sustain Livonian literary language had ceased to exist. Today, only less than ten people speak Livonian as their mother tongue. The youngest among them was born in 1926.

Helen FlemingFriday 24th of June 2005 11:35:05 PM
Akkala Saami and Ter Saami -
Traditionally a people of hunters and fishermen, the Saami lived through dark hours from the 16th to the mid-20th century. Their lifestyle and customs came under attack and their traditional territory split between Finland, Sweden, and Russia. The territory where Akkala Saami and Ter Saami are spoken, belongs to Russia. Colonization, taxes, persecution of traditional shamans, the prohibition to use their language and express their culture, racism and economic decline pushed the majority to assimilate into the dominant society.

At the beginning of the 19th century, the sijdd system, their traditional way of life started changing under the influence of the state policies and economic development of the area.

The Russian revolution of 1917 and Soviet reforms of the 1920's influenced employment and social structure of the Saami. Traditions that had lasted for hundreds of years disintegrated completely when private reindeer husbandry was eliminated through collectivization.

In the last part of the 1930s, the authorities of the Soviet Union began the political persecution of educated and resourceful Saami and their descendants. In the 1950s-60s the Saami of the inner parts of the Kola Peninsula, were uprooted from their traditional habitation areas and forced to live in one centre Luujaavv'r.

Up to the beginning of the 1980s, Akkala and Ter Saami were first and foremost spoken at home. Saamis born in the 1930s and 1940s have experienced great pressure from the dominant cultures. Some refused to acknowledge their Saami background, or in the Soviet Union, they were forced to abandon the Saami language and learn Russian. Saami parents in Russia urged their children to speak Russian, in order for them to be able to compete with the majority population in meeting the requirements of society. In Russia today, young Saami rarely have a full command of the Saami language.

The Akkala and Ter Saami dialects are disappearing quickly because there are too few speakers, and members of the younger generation are not learning to speak these languages as their mother tongues.

martingaleSaturday 25th of June 2005 07:37:17 PM
. - All stories about languages that got dead centuries ago are kind of mysterious. But it's sad to see languages dying right now. It's like... let's say a small percentage of human wisdom and culture disappears. And it's never gonna come back.

Livonia- Now I know. We call it "Inflanty". Actually we called it this way cause this name is no longer used in Poland, except historical books. This name died in Polish language, too.

Thanks
martingaleSaturday 25th of June 2005 07:39:50 PM
Aha! - One more thing Helen:

Watashi wa Martingale desu

:)
keaMonday 27th of June 2005 03:19:21 PM
- [quote]All stories about languages that got dead centuries ago are kind of mysterious. But it's sad to see languages dying right now. It's like... let's say a small percentage of human wisdom and culture disappears. And it's never gonna come back.
[/quote]
I have read from linguistic articles that after 50 or 100 (I can't remember which was it) 50 % of the worlds languages today will be gone.
There are so many very small languages in the world that Estonian is considered actually to be one of the big languages ;)
Helen FlemingWednesday 13th of July 2005 04:58:38 AM
- [quote]Originally posted by martingale
Livonia- Now I know. We call it "Inflanty". Actually we called it this way cause this name is no longer used in Poland, except historical books. This name died in Polish language, too.[/quote]

In Estonia, on the contrary, the word Livonian has now been taken into use again. Just as the Gulf of Bothnia was renamed Põhjalaht, the Gulf of Riga was renamed Liivi laht (the Gulf of Livonia) as it used to be.