Swedish is a North Germanic language with around 9 million
speakers mainly in Sweden and Finland, and also in Estonia, Norway,
Canada and the USA. It is closely related to Norwegian and Danish and
is mutually intelligible with them to a large extent, particularly in
its written form.
One of the earliest uses of Swedish as a literary language was "Gustav
Vasa's Bible", translated and published in 1540-1 under the patronage of
King Gustav Vasa.
Finland was ruled by Sweden from the 12th century until 1809 and during
that period, Swedish was the main language of government and education
there. Today Finnish and Swedish have equal status as official languages in
All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They
are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another
in a spirit of brotherhood. (Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights)