The most frequently asked questions in the Internet about Latvia and Latvians

Interesting facts about Latvia and Latvians with photos

Latvia: Latvians | Latvian language | Latvian culture | Latvian nature | Latvian art and culture | Latvian names

There are many languages used for communication in the Norh East of Europe and around the Baltic Sea, but only Latvian and Lithuanian belong to the group of Baltic languages. As a result, Baltic languages are primarily spoken in Latvia and Lithuania. Both Baltic languages are similar, but still Latvian and Lithuanian are not mutually intelligible, and Latvians and Lithuanians are only able to understand some separate words or phrases, but not the general context, when communicating with their neighbours.

Not everybody is aware though which are the Baltic languages. Sometimes people think Estonian, for instance, also belongs to the Baltic languages, but that is quite wrong. Estonian belongs to the finno-ugric language family, and is completely different.

Which leaves Latvian and Lithuanian. There used to be more, but they are extinct by know. Some argue Latgalian is also a Baltic language. It might be so, yet it does not have the status of an official language in Latvia, which makes its use limited to a certain extent.

Language

Latvia

Latvian is the mother tongue  of about 1,7 million people, mostly living in Latvia, where it is the only official language. There are large Latvian-speaking communities in the US, Canada, the UK, Ireland, Australia, Germany, Sweden and Russia.

If you want to understand Latvian, you may need professional translation services into Latvian.

Today it will not be difficult to translate into Latvian. To do this, simply go to the website of the Littera Agency, fill out a special order form online.

Latvian alphabet

It is Latin alphabet, using 33 letters and a number of diacritic marks.

Latvian names

Latvian girl names usually end with -a, -e, and boy names with -s/ -is (which is common for the last names, as well). Latvians do not use middle names.

Some of the typical names are –

Boys: Roberts, Jānis, Kristaps, Andris, Matīss, Aleksandrs

Girls: Madara, Anna, Elīna, Kristīne, Alise, Līga.

Latvian flag

Latvian flag_littera24

Capital of Latvia

The capital is Riga. 700,000 people live there. It is a thriving city with abundant energy, spectacular buildings, and a lot of parks. It is also the political and business centre of the country and many important decisions are taken there.

Capital of Latvia_Riga

Latvian architecture

The capital is Riga. 700,000 people live there. It is a thriving city with abundant energy, spectacular buildings, and a lot of parks. It is also the political and business centre of the country and many important decisions are taken there.

Latvian-architecture-5

The urban architecture of the major Latvian cities offers many breath-taking views. It is a mix of the Medieval and the Modern, the decadent lines of Art Nouveau and National Romanticism, Stalinist Era Neoclassicism and early 21st century Neo-Futurism.

Latvian art and culture

Latvia is recognized by its culture and altogether there are many talented people originating from this country, be it music, arts or literature.

Latvian to English

Although English is quite wide-spread in Latvia, professional translation services are highly demanded, as there are many occasions when an accurate and precise translation or interpretation is a prerequisite for successful business operations. Translation into English is not the main activity of Littera linguists. They do translation services in over 80 world languages.

Latvia and Russia

Latvia was incorporated in the Soviet Union in 1940, and was part of it until regaining independence in 1991. Many Latvians born and raised within that time period are able to communicate in Russian, as well. For people belonging to other generations knowledge of Russian is less common.

Latvian nature

Latvians like to take road-trips, hike in the woods, walk along the sea. In general, many of them (or us), although being urban dwellers feel quite close to the nature.

If you know some more interesting facts about Latvians, please comment below.