Finland-Swedish Sign Language


A language of Finland

Alternate Names
FinSSL, Finlandssvenskt Teckenspråk, SRVK, Suomenruotsalainen Viittomakieli

150 in Finland (2014 EUD). EUD estimates 150 deaf signers out of 300 total signers. Total users in all countries: 152.


Scattered; south and west coast areas.

Language Status

8a (Moribund).


Developed originally out of Swedish Sign Language (SSL) [swl], but now distinct. Closely-related to Finnish Sign Language (FinSL) [fse], differing in some lexical items, and sometimes considered a dialect of FinSL that is more like SSL, especially in the west bordering Sweden. FinSSL signers generally understand FinSL due to familiarity with it as the dominant sign language of Finland. Borrowing from FinSL, SSL, and Swedish [swe]. (Hoyer 2004).


One-handed fingerspelling.

Language Use

Mostly deaf people from southern and western coastal areas, whose families speak Swedish and who attended the deaf school in Porvoo (Hoyer 2004). The first deaf school in Finland, in Porvoo, where FinSSL developed, was founded in 1846 and closed in 1993. Private spheres only. Older adults only.

Language Development

Dictionary. Agencies: Finnish Association of the Deaf (FAD); Finnish Museum of the Deaf.


Unwritten documents [Zxxx].

Other Comments

Fingerspelling system similar to French Sign Language [fsl].

Also spoken in:

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