Want To Learn Lithuanian?
Lithuania is a Baltic country that borders with Latvia, Poland, Belarus and Russia (the Kaliningrad Oblast). The population is almost 3 million. The country and surrounding region have seen many changes over its history, which has ultimately shaped Lithuania into what it is today. The people and their culture offer a unique look into the past of the country, making it a great case study for those interested in the Baltic region.
When it comes to Lithuanian, the official language of the country with over 3 million native speakers, things get quite interesting. It shares its heritage with its Baltic neighbor Latvia, with both languages being the only remaining members of the Baltic branch of the Indo-European language family. What that means is that the language is quite unique when compared with those surrounding the country.
It uses the Latin alphabet for writing, though with some extra diacritic characters that bring the total to 32 letters. While it is highly inflected, the fact that each letter represents a single sound (with some exceptions) mean that it is quite easy to get started with pronunciation. As a particularly unchanged language, some aspects of the grammar will differ from that of most other languages.
Learning Lithuanian will prove tremendously helpful for those who come to visit. English is not very prominently spoken except amongst the younger generation. Russian is spoken as a second language by some too, especially the older generation. For those who enjoy researching and studying language history, it also offers some fascinating insights into the history of the region as Lithuanian is considered amongst the most conservative Indo-European language still around today. It retains many features of Proto-Indo-European that are not seen in many other languages today.