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“Ar kalbate lietuviškai?
Do you speak Lithuanian?“
is answered by more than three million people with:
Lithuania (Lietuva) has around 3 million inhabitants.
In Lithuanian, the Latin alphabet is used.
However, there a few additional special characters in the Lithuanian alphabet.
Please, take a closer look at these letters from the Lithuanian alphabet:
Ą / ą, Č / č, Ę / ę, Ė / ė, Į / į
A number of diacritical marks are used;
they are accents above or underneath letters (for example, the ų in lietuvių kalba (Lithuanian language) or the ė in Joninės 'Festival of St. John').
If you are writing Lithuanian, please do not leave these accents out because it could change the meaning of a word!
Lithuanian has seven cases:
Nominative, genitive, dative and accusative are perhaps familiar to you.
Additionally, in Lithuanian you will come across the vocative, locative, and instrumental cases.
The Lithuanian language is related to Latvian.
However, it must be said that Latvians and Lithuanians do not actually understand each other, as over time their two languages have, despite there similarities, developed to the point where they are quite far apart from one another.
Lithuanian belongs to the Eastern Baltic languages, whose roots come from the Baltic Languages and in turn belongs to the Indo-European languages.
Other Indo-European language branches also include Germanic (for example, German and English), Slavic (for example, Russian and Polish) and Nordic (for example, Danish and Swedish).
The Lithuanian language still contains many age-old forms and therefore, is considered antiquated and very interesting to linguists.
Lithuanian is the next closest living relative of Sanscrit within the Indo-European language family. Another Baltic language yet living along side Lithuanian is Latvian.