|1.||Finnish name: Suomi a republic in N Europe, on the Baltic Sea: ceded to Russia by Sweden in 1809; gained independence in 1917; Soviet invasion successfully withstood in 1939--40, with the loss of Karelia; a member of the European Union. It is generally low-lying, with about 50 000 lakes, extensive forests, and peat bogs. Official languages: Finnish and Swedish. Religion: Christian, Lutheran majority. Currency: euro. Capital: Helsinki. Pop: 5 216 000 (2004 est). Area: 337 000 sq km (130 120 sq miles)|
|2.||Gulf of Finland an arm of the Baltic Sea between Finland, Estonia, and Russia|
Republic in northern Europe, bordered by the Gulf of Bothnia (an arm of the Baltic Sea) and Sweden to the west, Norway to the north, Russia to the east, and the Gulf of Finland (another arm of the Baltic) and the Baltic Sea to the south. Its capital and largest city is Helsinki.
Note: Despite centuries of cultural, political, and economic domination by the Russian empire and the former Soviet Union, Finland has managed to maintain an independent identity.