Lunch Time Learning: A Little Lithuanian Conversation Starter

Lithuanian or Lietuvių Kalba is a Baltic language, the official language of Lithuania and one of the official languages of the European Union. It’s written using the Latin alphabet that us English speakers are accustomed to and it’s closest language-relation is probably Latvian. It is believed to be the most conservative living Indo-European language, retaining many features of Proto-Indo-European that has now been lost in other Indo-European languages. It retains many archaic features otherwise found only in ancient languages such as Sanskrit or Ancient Greek. Because of this, it’s a very important resource for the reconstruction of the Proto-Indo-European language, giving the world a link to something that may otherwise be lost.

In Lithuania, it can be divided into two main dialects, Highland Lithuanian and Lowland Lithuanian and these can then be divided into further sub-dialects! But for today, the leson we’ve shared below goes through just the basics, so that at your next social or corporate interactions with Lithuanian speakers, you’ll be able to say hello and introduce yourself, even if you need a translator or interpreter to handle the rest.

Make sure to try it out or teach a friend this weekend to ensure it stays in your memory and Turėti gerą savaitgalį – or Have a good weekend!

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