Tag Archives: Latvian

Losing Riga – losing Latvia?

by Licia Cianetti On 1st June the residents of Riga went to the polls to elect a new City Council. The election came after four years under mayor Nils Ušakovs, the first ethnic Russian to lead an administration in the capital. Ušakovs secured another victory for his moderate Russophone ethnic party, Harmony Centre, and kept […]

Languages in the Contact Zone: An Insight into the Origins of Baltic-Finnic Languages

by Krister SK Vasshus The Baltic languages are considered to be archaic due to the the similarity of their features to the linguistic ancestor of the modern Indo-European (IE) languages: the Proto-Indo-European language. Lithuanian is thought to be the most conservative off all IE languages spoken today. The history of the Baltic languages isn’t straightforward; […]

Fortune-tellers, bears and goats: Winter solstice celebration in Latvia

by Ilze Dimanta (“Ziemas svētki” or “Ziemas saulgrieži” in Latvian) Big seasonal celebrations like winter and summer solstice, as well as Easter (“The Great Day” – Lieldienas) and fall celebration in Latvia are rich in traditions. Rituals and traditions are mostly inherited from previous centuries when the farm work was directly dependent on the length […]

How Latvian became Latvian

by Kārlis Caune How did Latvia become Latvia? History is a funny thing. Every country and nation have a different story of how its name came into being. Often these names and their etymology can be traced back hundreds and thousands of years into history. Many linguists  are still struggling  whether the Baltic languages are […]


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