суббота, 21 марта 2009 г.

Postcard from Latvia

Latvia is a North European Baltic country in European Union. It is bordered to the north by Estonia, to the south by Lithuania, and to the east both by Belarus and the Russian Federation. Across the Baltic Sea to the west lies Sweden. The territory of Latvia covers 64,589 km² and has a temperate seasonal climate.

The Latvians are a Baltic people culturally related to the Estonians and Lithuanians, with the Latvian language having many similarities with Lithuanian, but not with the Estonian language. Today the Latvian and Lithuanian languages are the only surviving members of the Baltic languages of the Indo-European family. The modern name of Latvia is thought to originate from the ancient Latvian name Latvji, which, like the name of Lithuania, may have originated from the river named Latva or Latuva, which may be today's Lates upe.

Latvia is a unitary democratic parliamentary republic and is divided into 26 districts. The capital and largest city is Riga.

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