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Finnish is a member of the Uralic language family and is related to Livonian, a minority language in Latvia, and Estonian. It is spoken by just over 5 million people in Finland and, Canada, and the United States. There are many theories as to how Finnish came to exist. One of the most prevalent is that it originated in the boreal forest belt in the Ural Mountain region.
Finland was actually a part of the kingdom of Sweden from the 13th to the 19th century. In that time, Swedish was actually used as the official language until 1809. In 1809, Sweden gave Finland to Russia. Until 1917, the use of Finnish fell drastically. Once Finland became independent in 1917, it designated Finnish and Swedish as official languages.