Indo-European > Germanic > North Germanic
Spoken by: 8.3 millions according to Ethnologue.com, 1998
Official in: Sweden, Finland
Spoken primarily in: Sweden, Finland (esp. Åland Islands, Ostrobothnia, SW coast)
Swedish forms the language group Continental Scandinavian Languages together with the (normally) mutually intelligible languages Danish and Norwegian. The grammar and lexicon of these languages were heavily influenced by Low German during the time of the Hanseatic League. Swedish is co-official with Finnish in Finland, where 5.5% of the population are native speakers of Swedish. Also non-native speakers are offered Swedish lessons in Finnish schools, and studied to at least a basic level by most.