Swedish is a North Germanic language spoken predominantly in Sweden,
part of Finland, and on the autonomous Åland islands, by a total of
over 9 million speakers. Standard Swedish is the national language
that evolved from the Central Swedish dialects in the 19th century and
was well-established by the first decades of the 20th century. While
distinct regional varieties still exist, influenced by the older rural
dialects, the spoken and written language is uniform and standardized,
with a 99% literacy rate among adults. Some of the genuine dialects
differ considerably from the standard language in grammar and
vocabulary and are not always mutually intelligible with Standard
Swedish. These dialects are confined to rural areas and spoken by a
rather limited group of people of low education and social mobility.
Swedish is distinguished by its prosody, which differs considerably
between varieties. It includes both lexical stress and some tonal
qualities. Swedish is also notable for the voiceless dorso-palatal
velar fricative, a sound found in many dialects, including the more
prestigious forms of the standard language.
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Today's selected anniversaries:
The United States declared war against Great Britain, beginning the
War of 1812.
Napoléon Bonaparte fought and lost his final battle, the Battle of
Charles Darwin received a manuscript by Alfred Russel Wallace on
evolution, which prompted him to publish his theory.
Woman suffrage activist Susan B. Anthony was fined $100 for attempting
to vote in the 1872 presidential election.
The SALT II treaty was signed by the United States and the Union of
Soviet Socialist Republics.
Wikiquote of the day:
"In the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make." -- Paul