Letti language

Lettisch (Latviešu valoda)
spoken in: Latvia
speaker: 2,2 million
official status
office language in: Latvia, European union
language code
ISO 639 -1: lv
ISO 639 -2: lav

those Letti language (Latviešu valoda) is the office language embodied in the article 4 of the condition of Latvia in Latvia.

Table of contents

general description

the language contraction according to ISO 639 is lv and/or. lav.

Lettisch belongs together with Litaui and Nehrungskuri nearly become extinct (it are only approx. 40Humans, who have the language as native language) as well as the oldPrussian (also become extinct) to the eastern group of the Baltic languages within the indogermanischen language family. It developed from Lettgalli spoken in Lettgallen and is more modern in its structure thanthe litauische language. The vocabulary contains many leaning words from the German, in addition, from the Swedish one and Russian one and recently from the English.

Letti is written with Latin writing. The first grammar Letti became from oneGerman, J. Rehehusen, 1644 given change (Manuductio ad linguam lettonicam facilis). Originally a Orthographie leaned against the German was used, at the beginning 20. Century however introduced to a radical spelling reform a phonological way of writing. This uses some diacritical indications, above allthe comma re-painted over that under consonants for the announcement of the Palatalisierung for the announcement of a long vowel and.

For the lettische language the absence of articles, attaching one is typical - s-is to maskuline in the contrast to the German language,and one - A-e to feminine nouns, even if it concerns foreign names, as well as the circumstance that foreign leaning words and also name of the discussion are shown following “lettisch” (e.g. Gerhards Šrēders for Gerhard Schröder).

historyin 20. Century

Lettisch was subjected during the time of the Soviet Okkupation of a purposeful policy of the language suppression, which would in the long run probably have led to the Linguizid, if Latvia had not become again independent 1991. Thus Lettisch became by purposeful promotion of the immigrationnearly to the minority language in the own country (1990 gave it straight still 51% Lettischsprachige in Latvia, in the capital Riga only about 30%). Beyond that the lettische language was displaced purposefully out of the public and the Russian to of allFor parts of the population knew language made, so that the control more did not have Letti value practical for not Letten, particularly since Russian was also office language. It required of drastic measures, in order to cancel this condition partly again at least, what then alsothe criticism of some western countries on itself pulled. In the year 2006 again 70% per cent of the inhabitants of Latvia Lettisch spoke as native language (altogether 88% of the population control Lettisch), and all school children must apart from their native language also Lettisch learn (which however alsoin Soviet times it must was) so that one can count on the fact that in some decades Lettisch will have reached again the status, which is appropriate for a national language in Europe.

Since that 1. May 2004 is Lettisch one of the office languagesin the European Union.


with the entry of Latvia to the European Union and the translation of extensive legal texts show up gaps in the lettischen vocabulary. The national translation agency examines and develops word new creations.


the lettische alphabet existsfrom 33 indications:

A A E e I i Ļ ļ R r V v
Ā ā Ē ē Ī ī M m S s Z z
B b F f J j N n Š š Ž ž
C C G g K k Ņ ņ partially
Č č Ģ ģ Ķ ķ O o U u
D D H h L l P p Ū ū

short ones and long vowels are thus differentiated with respect to the typeface. ThatLetter h occurs except in foreign words only at the word beginning.


in Letti nearly always is the stress on the first syllable. There are few exceptions, then for example the empty phrases become “lab-serve” (good day) or “labvakar”(Good evening), which from the components “lab” (well) and “serve” (day) or “vakar” (evening) exist, on the second syllable stresses.

The vowels with Makron (thus ā, ē, ī and ū) are long expressed, against what the normal vowels are very short,at the word ending usually hardly audibly. The “comma” under and/or over the consonants g, k, l and n leads to the Palatalisierung. Ģ for example as a kind “dj” one expresses. Particularly the sounds ķ (how “tj”) and ļ (how “lj”)prepare for foreigners, who learn the language, problems. The letters č, š and ž are expressed as “tsch”, “sch” (be correctless) and “sch” (be correctful).

The C is spoken as time, e are in most cases spoken like A, more rarely than eas in German. The h is not gehaucht, but is not spoken like “CH” (as in strike CH EN). The r is rolled as in many slawischen languages or as in the Italian or Spanish. s becomes always be correctless, the z as be correctfuls expressed. The v is never spoken contrary to the Germans like f, but always like the German w.



case question (Jautājuma vards)
Nominativ (Nominatīvs) who? what? kas?
Genitive (Ģenitīvs) whose? kā?
Dative (Datīvs) whom? came?
Accusative (Akuzatīvs) whom? what? ko?
Instrument valley (Instrumentālis) with what? with whom? acre ko?
Lokativ (Lokatīvs) where? cure?
Vokativ He? wenen? ?


as above mentions,always end words of male sex except for few exceptions up - s, - is or - US , female words always up - to A or - e. There are some female words, which up - s end, e.g. govs “cow” or pils “castle”. With the Maskulinafour declination classes are differentiated, with tool Nina three; Neutra do not exist. To the four cases well-known in German Nominativ, genitive, dative and accusative come still Lokativ, Vokativ and Instrumentalis. As example of a complete paradigm the Maskulinum draugs “friend”:

M1 Singularly Plural
nom:draug s draug i
towards:draug A draug u
dat:draug at draug the iem
akk:draug u draug US
locomotive:draug ā draug OS

of far ones a Femininum of the 1. Class, osta “port”:

F1 singularly Plural
nom:eastA east as
towards:east as east u
dat:east ai east ām
akk:east u east as
locomotive:ā east ās [
work on] verbs

the verbs up - ēt, - āt, - īt, - ot or t end to east. There are 3Conjugation classes.

As example gribēt “ want the verb”:

M1 singularly Plural
1. P.:it grib u mēs grib to
2. P.:do grib to i jūs grib RK
3. P.:viņš grib viņi grib


remarkable it is that upeach preposition a certain case to follow must (for example on pie (with) genitive always follows), but in the majority follows after each preposition the dative. In this example “with the friend” pie is called drauga, but “with the friends” pie draugiem.


Web on the left of

Wikipedia on Lettisch
Wikiquote: Letti proverbs - quotations

  > German to English > de.wikipedia.org (Machine translated into English)