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Talk:About Lule Sami

In the article we read:

....extends along most of the western coast of Norway,

could it be that northern coast of Norway is meant? (Dorothee 17:36, 15 December 2008 (CET))

I have discussed this... - most of the western coast of Norway is a correct description for where the Sami area is. (Only southern Norwegians thinks about the coast of Vestlandet as the western coast of Norway - and the rest of the western coast as North Norway...) If we look at the maps, it looks as if it is the WEST coast in most of North Norway too, but this is an illusion: the map is tilted: the coastline is going west-east from north of Kvænangen (Lopphavet). So the best expression would be: <br.> ...- extends along the northern and most of the western coast of Norway, (Kristin 19:05, 8 January 2009 (CET))

The following map of Scandinavia needs to be modified to include Dalarna. (Svenne)

here are bits and pieces that will help us to edit and further extend the article page.

It is absolutely crucial that we have references for everything claimed. These references need to be there before we open these pages to the public which is hopefully on November 20th!! (Dorothee)

The above statement was somewhat optimistic I guess :=(. Still a lot of references missing and lots of things that need to be tied up. (Dorothee 20:31, 21 November 2008 (CET))

(1) Poem



ja bigodihtte


(I found a mistake here: It should be sliehpájdihtte. I will check up whether me or the author has got it wrong. (Kristin 21:14, 8 January 2009 (CET)))

This poem is nice! And the grammar too! Now I leave Trondheim... See you on TypeCraft!... (Kristin - Oct. 20 18:00]

bajedihtte / åjvijdihtte / ja bigodihtte / sliehpájdihtte
“rise / your heads / and discover / your cheast cloths”
up 2pDUIMP

I see the translation, but I do not understand the meaning. I guess I am not a poem person. Can someone help me understand this?

May be - sliehppá is the brest cloth that covers the opening in the traditional garment (see the photo of Svenn-Egil). It is closed in the neck. Usually ornamented. (Kristin 21:14, 8 January 2009 (CET))

If we publish this poem, we need a reference and a context.


(2) ÁJLUOVTA SKÅVLÅ... Here is the printing-friendly page in the Lokalavisa NordSalten:


It is possible to put it somewhere. (Kristin)

Yes, ofc. it is. In which context do you want to mention this link? (Dorothee)

I think it should be possible to link to all texts that are digitalized! As the texts from NordSalten, the local newspaper. <br.> Is it possible to do it in the list over entered texts? I try and see how it works. You can check it out. (Kristin 21:19, 8 January 2009 (CET))

(3) Here is a picture from the museum at Árran, from the exibition Viessom: A couple in bout, fishing: [[1]] (Kristin)

We cannot use information that tells us that the Lule Sami culture is a mountain and Forest Culture in Norway! This concerns only Samis on the Swedish side of the border. On the Norwegian side of the border we find a Costal Sami culture ehich differs from the Costal Sami Culture further north! I can write shortly about this. (Kristin)

Pictures can be integrated, yes, again it is the context that is important! (Dorothee)

The Arran picture is nice, however, my major concern is that we give a readable and informative representation of Lule Sami. So there should be a clear focus on the language!!! (Dorothee)

How should we classifiy the Sami language family? - Discussion

Hi folks;

I am not so sure the paragraph below, which I have moved from the article page to this page, is in its final form yet.

Here the paragraph:

The closest relatives are Finnish and Estonian, yet the Sami separated from these more than 3,000 years ago. This means that the Sami language group has an independent history that is at least as long as that of the Germanic language group, and that is twice as old as that of the Romance language group. This long history and the fact that they are usually not mutually intelligible makes them different languages, not different dialects as they are often mistakenly described.

(a) I would want to see a reference for the claim that the Sami language group has a history at least as long a the Germanic and twice as long a the Romance language. (Dorothee) BTW, is it true that the Romance language family is half as old as the Germanic, does not quite sound right? We definitely need references in case we leave this sentence in the text. I would opt for omitting it. It is not central to our concern. (Dorothee)

I do not know of any knowledge that says Sami is 'older' than other languages. This way of thinking about languages is absurd! - Languages change all the time, and at one point they have been through so many quantitative changes (many small changes) that the language experiences a change in quality. In Norwegian there were quantitative changes after the Great Plague which resulted in a quantitative change around 1550: New Norwegian was a fact (the name in opposition to Old Norwegian - or Norse). (Kristin)

<br.>I think that the text, as it now stands, captures the facts and has sufficient references. There is no mention of one language being older than another. There is a comparison of the age of three language "families" or "groups" as is currently understood by linguists. This comparison is important because there is a wide-spread misconception (stemming from the assimilation policies of the 19th and 20th centuries) that 1) there is only one Sami language with several dialects and 2) that Sami and Finnish are closely related. As far as I know, there is no single "language" in the history of mankind that has remained coherently one language over such a vast geographic area and 3,000 years. It is important to place the Sami languages in perspective by comparing them with other more well-known language groups. I chose to compare the Sami group with both Germanic and Romance because the latter two make up the majority of western European languages. To claim that the Sami languages are simply dialects of a single language would be the same as saying that the Germanic languages are simply dialects of one language. Both claims would be incorrect. The only reason people think of only a single Sami language is because that is what they have been told for a very long time and this stems from what Broadbent discusses as the Sami officially having an ethnicity but no history because of power imbalances in the region. Recall that much of the history of Scandinavia (people and languages) that we have received to date has been handed to us by the North Germanic peoples living in the region, not from the Sami peoples. As is usual, the view of the minority/indigenous people has been much too simple, and it has artificially downplayed their significance. Again, there is no mention in the text of any of the Sami languages being older than some other language (e.g. Norwegian). (Bruce 15:45, 11 January 2009 (CET))<br.><br.>

Different Sami dialects or different Sami languages?

I (when I talk about it!) explain Sami to have three main language groups: Eastern Saami Languages group, Central Saami Languages group, and Southern Saami Languages group. Sea Saami, Inari Saami, North Saami, Lule Saami and Pite Saami belongs to the Central Saami Languages group. The Central Sami Languages group have quantity change in common. There are 10 different tongues of Sami - and each of them can be divided in dialectal groups (see Sammallahti). Different language groups is one factor that counts for considering South Sami and East (Skolt) Sami as different 'languages' than the languages belonging in the Central Sami Languages group.(Kristin)

These Sami languages are written with different orthography: Latin and Cyrillic - and several different solutions at least for the Latin alphabets. So in Norway East Sami, North Sami, Lule Sami and South Sami are all written with a different alphabet (I have no information about Pite Sami and Ume Sami). This situation makes communication between the different Sami groups difficult. This is a second factor that makes the variants of Sami languages rather than dialects. (Kristin).

Neighboring Sami dialects are not so different that it is a hindrance for mutual understanding, but the dialects are gradually decreasing in mutual intelligibility. Samis have 80% of their vocabulary in common, but the semantics of the words can differ substantially; in addition one finds differences in syntax, morphology and phonology. Samis talk their own language inside their own group, outside the group the majority language is usually used. Lack of mutual intelligibility is a third factor. (Kristin)

When we go thousand years back, the Sami languages (or dialect groups) were more similar than they are today. I suppose Pekka Sammallahti is one that knows a lot about this. In his book "The Saami Languages" he writes also about diachronic developments. (Kristin)

If we compare today's Sami languages with Norwegian and the languages N. is related too, Proto-Sami may be compared with Germanic. I can look up when mayor changes have taken place in the history of the Sami languages, - but this will still not prove anything in a discussion of how old Sami languages are.

So may be we quit talking about old languages... (Kristin)

<br.> I am not sure what you are talking about. Who has talked about "old" languages? The text discusses relative ages of language "families" or "groups" as is well established in the literature. (Bruce 15:45, 11 January 2009 (CET)) <br.> <br.>

"Note that the Sea Saami no longer have an independent language, but have adopted North Saami, Lule Saami or Norwegian."

Sea Sami is an independent language which today is spoken by old people in Kvænangen and Varanger. It has not been an independent written language, but this holds also for Pite Saami and Ume Saami. (Kristin)

To be quite honest, I find this whole discussion quite disturbing. There seems to be a lot of "received wisdom", misunderstanding, and to be quite honest Germanic-centrism, here that has little bearing on the real issue - the history and relationship among the Saami languages and other languages. I do not have time to add my 2 cents at the moment, but I will try to clear up some of the issues soon. [Bruce]

Where is the Germanic-centrism? <br.>

The text in discussion looks for me as one is comparing the oldness of languages in a competition. The discussion is concerned about two things, as I see it: <br.>

  • documentation (Dorothee)
  • how we write about Sami languages (Kristin)<br.>

How old is Lule Sami? - or Sami languages? <br.> It is difficult to answer questions like this. The more one look into it , the more diffuse the matter becomes. I will explain what I mean by an example from a language I know a little bit more about, namely Norwegian.

We consider Norwegian - as we know it (New Norwegian, is the term that is used) - to be more or less as it is today since the middle of the 16th century. The changes started before the Great Plague. At that time people were speaking what we some hundred years later call Old Norwegian - the Norse variant which was spoken in Norway (with its dialectal variations). Norse variants were spoken in the Nordic language area, and there were differences between fx Norwegian Norse and Icelandic Norse that were growing much larger as time went by. <br.>

When Norse is called Old Norwegian, this demonstrates that one recognizes a continuum in the development of the language and also a recognition of that there were other variants in Sweeden and Denmark and Iceland etc... When we go further back in time, the difference in the way these people spoke were smaller, and is referred to a Old Norse. Still we have a continuum. We can keep on going back, we will have a continuum as far back as there has been people walking om earth.

Two factors has to come into consideration: 1) who speaks what and how, and 2) who speaks what and how where. <br.> This we know rather much about when we consider the area where the Samis have been living - Sábme. Therefore we should write about where and how the Samis have been living - and the other peoples they have had contact with; - and we should talk about the language, how it is spoken today, and about the development of the language through history - documenting different views when there are differences.

The history of the Sami people - and the forefathers of the Samis - and the continuum of their tounge through history in the area we call Sábme, stand on its own feet (norvagism). Why compare? - well, there is one good reason for comparing: How can we explain when people do not know enough about what we are talking about? We do analogies. As between German and Dutch - or Between Italian and Spanish as I use to do - to explain the difference between Lule Sami and North Sami.<br.> We can also do analogies between Proto-Sami and Germanic to show how the language has developed. Then it can be easier to understand why the Sami languages are so different. At the same time, the parallellism (more or less) in development in time does not make things more difficult to grasp. But I cannot say that it is necessary to explain in this way.<br.>

But please do not make a competition between languages about which one is oldest! People in Italy were talking with each other also before they talked what we today call Latin (Latin is not only a language, it is also a time period when people have been talking in a particular way - limited in time by a beginning and an end - - but this is just a way to classify! People have been talkin every year, every day - understanding each other, talking the same tounge). (Kristin 01:05, 9 January 2009 (CET)) <br.>

<br.>The Germanic-centrism that I mentioned was the view of Sami language history as is presented in the North Germanic literature (stemming from the assimilation days) and its acceptance in some of the above comments. As Broadbent points out, there are huge flaws in the way the Sami have been presented in the past and that we need to make sure that we do not perpetuate the "received wisdom". I think that the text, as it now stands, captures the facts and has sufficient references. <br.>

Again, I do not see anything in the text claiming that one language is older than another. Kristin's discussion of some of the history of Norwegian (and Italian) seems out of place here since nobody has suggested that any of the Sami languages or Norwegian is older, nor has the text about Sami discussed specific periods of time or changes over time. (Bruce 15:45, 11 January 2009 (CET))<br.><br.>

Again I would like to repeat that whatever we claim about the history of Sami on the article page needs to be backed up by references.

Why are the dialects of Sami considered independent languages is a good question, and it should find a good answer. I also think we should have an answer to the question to which extend the languages within the Sami family are mutually understandable.

The issue how old in comparison to other languages Sami really is seems to me beside the point. (Dorothee)

<br.>I agree with Dorothee about references and about the idea of comparing the age of different specific languages is beside the point. However, see my comment above about the importance of comparing language families/groups in order to put things in perspective and to counter some of the anti-Sami rhetoric that we have inherited from the past. (Bruce 15:45, 11 January 2009 (CET))<br.>

An Invitation to write an article page about Lule Sami and the Documentation of Lule Sami

Hi Kristin and Svenn Egil,

This will be our project page!!! (click back to article)

It's purpose is ofc to report on the annotation of Lule Sami texts, but written up in a way that it is interesting to all ppl interested in languages, or Lule Sami, or both.


We should make sure that this becomes a page that has information that cannot be found on the Wikipedia or any other well known web page.

Moreover, it should be interesting and beautiful information - so not too much text; instead some text made attractive by pictures, music files, cool links, and also with a internal link to your personal page in this TC wiki ( each annotator should have his/her own page in the TCwiki) so that ppl can see who the ppl are that annotate Lule Sami.

Here now some links and text snippets that I found interesting in this connection:

http://boreale.konto.itv.se/laante.htm http://boreale.konto.itv.se/samieng1.htm

Bluegreen: LuleSami. Mountain and ForestSami culture in Norway and Sweden, many famous handicrafters and chanters from this group, language is locally quite strong. Separate educational institutions with several textbooks in the language, but not for all subjects are taught. A small number of books are published each year in this language. Traditional and present day cultural center: Jokkmokk, Sweden.

Here a citation that I found: (see source below) As a curiosity I'd like to mention that there's one Sami word that has made it into several of the major languages of this world, that word is Tundra -doesn't it speak volumes about which part of the world this is. :)

When Nils-Aslak Valkeapää in his book The Sun—my Father (1991), chooses to create a metaphorical poem of a migrating herd of reindeer and uses [in his poem] some of the wealth of names that exist in Sami to describe the reindeer’s appearance, age and sex, he does so not only to demonstrate the wealth of terminology within the Sami language—he does something beyond that: He plays with the language, conjuring up concepts that have never been used before in that fashion. He conceives, in a sense, new fictional animals by combining familiar words in new ways. And he creates different reindeer which, in terms of their being a part of the herd or outside of it, can easily be viewed as parallels to the artist and his or her position in society, as well as to all human beings in their common experiences of being part of a "flock" or alone.

To this wealth of words can be added a great number of Sami onomatopoetical expressions for sounds pertaining to migration, words for working the herd, for the baying of dogs,and the sounds of a thousand hoofs on frozen ground, for undulating moors over which reindeer horns move, for the sound of bells that, like a blanket of clouds, lift the sky up and give the basis for life in these northern regions. And, as if that isn’t enough, there are allusions to the Sami national anthem, and tracks left behind by the herd, both concrete tracks where it has walked and abstract tracks for us, the readers, to follow back into history. Whether we journey with the herd or only pass by it as we wander, it is impossible for us to survive into the future without the tracks, without nature: The River of Life, the daughter of spring, sap, the mosquito maidens and "the sun/red and warm/moved happiness/ into the morning." Because "nothing remains of us/but a yoik in the singing wind/a dream about being." But even so: "and time does not exist, no end, none/and time is, eternal, always, is," and we are all part of "the life’s circle/infinite/without/beginning/or end/fulfills/changes/colors"…"the horizon’s red dawn/ the starry peaks."

taken from: http://weberstudies.weber.edu/archive/archive%20C%20Vol.%2016.2-18.1/Vol.%2016.2/haraldgaski.html

At the beginning it might be confusing to edit this wiki, but one learns it rather fast :=) I used the following link to get the information I needed:


I hope you find this useful. Dorothee