Inari Sami language
Inari Sami (anarâškielâ) is a Sami language spoken by the Inari Sami of Finland. It has approximately 300 speakers, the majority of whom are middle-aged or older and live in the municipality of Inari. According to the Sami Parliament of Finland, 269 persons used Inari Sami as their first language. It is the only Sami language that is spoken exclusively in Finland. The language is classified as being seriously endangered as few children learn it.
|Ethnicity||Inari Sami people|
|300 (2001 census)|
Inari Sami is 7 on this map.
The first book in Inari Sami was Anar sämi kiela aapis kirje ja doctor Martti Lutherus Ucca katkismus, which was written and translated by Edvard Wilhelm Borg in 1859. The written history of modern Inari Sami, however, is said to begin with Lauri Arvid Itkonen's translation of the history of the Bible in 1906, although he had already translated some other books into Inari Sami (Martin Luther and John Charles Ryles). After that, Inari Sami was mainly published in books written by linguists, in particular Frans Äimä and Erkki Itkonen. For many years, very little literature was written in Inari Sami, although Sämitigge has funded and published a lot of books, etc., in recent years.
Since 1992, Finland's Sami have had the right to interact with officials in their own language in areas where they have traditionally lived: Enontekiö, Utsjoki, Inari and the northern part of Sodankylä as official policy favors the conservation of the language. All announcements in Inari, which is the only officially quadrilingual municipality in Finland, must be made in Finnish, North Sami, Inari Sami and Skolt Sami. Only about 10% of the public servants in the area, however, can serve the Inari Saami-speaking population in Inari Saami, so Finnish is used by the remaining 90%.
In 1986, the Anarâškielâ servi (Inari Sami Language Association) was founded to promote the language and its use. The association publishes numerous books, textbooks, a calendar, etc., in Inari Sami. They have established a language immersion program in 1997 for 3- to 6-year-old children in a day care in Inari and Ivalo. In 2007, the association started publishing an Inari Sami newspaper called Kierâš online.
A new phenomenon see Inari Sami is being used in rap songs by Mikkal Morottaja, whose stage name is Amoc. Morottaja published the first full-length Inari Sami rap CD in the world on February 6, 2007 (Sami National Day).
Along with Finnish, Skolt Sami and Northern Sami, Inari Sami is one of the four official languages in the municipality of Inari, in particular in the following villages located on the shore of Lake Inari (the Inari Sami name for the village is enclosed in parentheses):
- The central open vowel /ä/ was distinguished only in older Inari Sami. In the modern language, it has merged into the front vowel /a/.
Inari Sami, like the other Samic languages, has fixed word-initial stress. Syllables are furthermore divided into feet, usually consisting of two syllables each, and with secondary stress on the first syllable of every foot. In the other Samic languages the last syllable in word with an odd number of syllables is not assigned to a foot. In Inari Sami, however, two important changes in the early development of Inari Sami have changed this structure, making the prosodic rhythm quite different:
- In words with an odd number of syllables, the last two syllables were converted into a foot, leaving the third-last syllable as a foot of its own.
- The apocope of certain final vowels, in words of three syllables or more, reduced this new final foot to a single syllable.
Consequently, Inari Sami distinguishes prosodically between words that originally ended in a vowel but have undergone apocope, and words that ended in a consonant already in Proto-Samic.
This rearrangement of the foot structure has an effect on the length of vowels and consonants.
Inari Sami is written using the Latin script. The alphabet currently used for Inari Sami was made official in 1996 and stands as follows:
|I i||/i/, /j/|
|Á á||/a/ (/ä/)|
The phonetic values are the same as in Karelian, and đ represents the voiced dental fricative (in English "the"). Q/q, W/w, X/x, Å/å, Ö/ö are also used in words of foreign origin. Á was traditionally pronounced in the middle of a and ä, but in modern Inari Sami the distinction between á and ä is nonexistent. In writing, Á and ä are nevertheless considered separate characters. Ä is used in:
- the first syllable of a word, when there is an e or i in a second syllable of the same word,
- a word of only one syllable (although á is also used), or
- the diphthong iä (but not in the diphthong uá).
In dictionaries, grammars and other linguistic works, the following additional marks are used. These are not used in normal writing.
- A vertical line ˈ (U+02C8 MODIFIER LETTER VERTICAL LINE), typewriter apostrophe or other similar mark is placed between consonants to indicate that the preceding consonant is long, and the preceding diphthong is short. It is only used when a diphthong precedes.
- The same mark placed between a vowel and a consonant indicates that the following consonant is short, that the preceding diphthong is short, or both.
- A dot is placed below consonants to indicate a half-long consonant.
Inari Sami has nine cases, although the genitive and accusative are often the same:
The partitive appears to be a highly unproductive case in that it seems to only be used in the singular. In addition, unlike Finnish, Inari Sámi does not make use of the partitive case for objects of transitive verbs. Thus "Mun puurâm leeibi" could translate into Finnish as either "Minä syön leivän" (English: I'm eating (all of) the bread) or "Minä syön leipää" (I'm eating (some) bread, or generally, I eat bread); this telicity contrast is mandatory in Finnish.
The personal pronouns have three numbers: singular, plural and dual. The following table contains personal pronouns in the nominative and genitive/accusative cases.
|First person (singular)||I||mun||my||muu|
|Second person (singular)||you (thou)||tun||your, yours||tuu|
|Third person (singular)||he, she||sun||his, her||suu|
|First person (dual)||we (two)||muoi||our||munnuu|
|Second person (dual)||you (two)||tuoi||your||tunnuu|
|Third person (dual)||they (two)||suoi||theirs||sunnuu|
|First person (plural)||we||mij||our||mii|
|Second person (plural)||you||tij||your||tii|
|Third person (plural)||they||sij||their||sii|
The next table demonstrates the declension of a personal pronoun I/we (dual)/we (plural) in the various cases:
|Locative||must, muste||munnust||mist, miste|
|Comitative||muuin, muin||munnuin, munnuuin||miiguim|
- first person
- second person
- third person
Inari Sami has five grammatical moods:
Inari Sami has two simple tenses:
and two compound tenses:
Inari Sami, like Finnish, the other Sami languages and Estonian, has a negative verb. In Inari Sami, the negative verb conjugates according to mood (indicative, imperative and optative), person (1st, 2nd, 3rd) and number (singular, dual and plural).
Ind. pres. Imperative Optative sg. du pl. sg. du pl. sg. du pl. 1 jie'm iän ep 1 – – – 1 iällum iäl'loon iällup 2 jie'h eppee eppeđ 2 ele ellee elleđ 2 ele ellee elleđ 3 ij iä'vá iä 3 – – – 3 iä'lus iällus iällus
- Anaras: The Inari Sámis
- "To which languages does the Charter apply?". European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. Council of Europe. p. 3. Retrieved 2014-04-03.
- Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Inari Sami". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
- "Language". Retrieved 2008-01-09.
- Itkonen, Erkki. Inarilappisches Wörterbuch. Lexica societatis fenno-ugricae: 20. Suomalais-ugrilainen seura. Helsinki. ISBN 951-9019-94-4.
- Sammallahti, Pekka. Morottaja, Matti. Säämi-suoma sänikirje. Inarinsaamelais-suomalainen sanakirja. Girjegiisá. Ykkösoffset Oy, Vaasa 1993. ISBN 951-8939-27-6.
- Olthuis, Marja-Liisa. Kielâoppâ. Inari : Sämitigge, 2000.
- Østmo, Kari. Sämikielâ vieres kiellân vuáðuškoovlâst. Helsinki : Valtion painatuskeskus, 1988.
|Inari Sami language test of Wikipedia at Wikimedia Incubator|
- Brief history of Inari Sámi
- Salminen, Tapani. UNESCO Red Book on Endangered Languages. 1993.
- Kimberli Mäkäräinen A minute vocabulary (Inari Sámi-English) (233 words)
- Names of birds found in Sápmi in a number of languages, including Skolt Sámi and English. Search function only works with Finnish input though.
- Inari Saami language resources at Giellatekno
- Clip about keeping Inari Sami alive (requires RealPlayer)
- The Inari Sami Language by Toivonen and Nelson
- Hans Morottaja speaks about himself, etc. in Inari Sámi