According to the preliminary results of the Population and
Housing Census (PHC 2011), 157 native languages are spoken
in Estonia. The previous census of 2000 indicated that 109
languages were spoken as native tongue.
Estonian is the most common native language (886,859
speakers - 68.5%), followed by Russian (383,062 - 29.6%)
and Ukrainian (8,012 - 0.6%).There are a total of 25
languages with over hundred speakers in Estonia.
Sign language could also be reported in the census and 147
people stated Estonian sign language as their native
For the first time, the latest census enabled respondents
to report their knowledge of Estonian dialects.131,243
people, i.e., 10.1% of Estonian permanent residents, were
able to speak a dialect.
The most common dialects include Võru (87,048 speakers,
incl. 12,549 speakers of Setu subdialect), Saarte (24,520,
incl. 1,320 speakers of Kihnu subdialect), and Mulgi
Detailed information on native languages and dialects is
published in the statistics
database. A map of Estonian dialects can be found at http://eki.ee/murded.
The 11th population
census in Estonia was conducted from 31 December 2011
until 31 March 2012. Previous censuses were carried out in
1881, 1897, 1922, 1934, 1941, 1959, 1970, 1979, 1989 and
2000. The next population census will be conducted in
Estonia in 2020/2021.