L1 users: 20,000 (Laakso et al 2013). Ethnic population: 30,000 (1995 M. Krauss). Total users in all countries: 25,700.
Finnmark, Troms counties; Nordland county: Ofoten.
2 (Provincial). Statutory provincial language in Sami Administrative District (1987, Sami Act, No. 12, Article 3).
Ruija, Torne, Sea Lappish. Two-thirds of all Saami speak Ruija dialect.
SVO; prepositions and postpositions; noun head final; dual number; case-marking (8 cases); verb affixes mark person, number; passives; comparatives; 30 consonants, 7 vowels, 4 diphthongs; non-tonal.
In central Finnmark Province, where North Saami has an official status, many children learn the language and are likely to continue to use it in adulthood (Salminen 2007). All ages. Also use Norwegian [nor].
Formerly called “Finns” which they consider derogatory.