Lithuanian

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A language of Lithuania

Alternate Names
Lietuvi, Lietuviskai, Litauische, Litewski, Litovskiy
Population

2,960,000 in Lithuania (1998). Population total all countries: 3,130,970.

Location

Widespread. Also in Argentina, Belarus, Brazil, Canada, Estonia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Poland, Russian Federation, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Uzbekistan.

Language Status

1 (National). Statutory national language (1992, Constitution, Article 14).

Dialects

Aukshtaitish (Aukshtaichiai, Aukstaitiskai, Highland Lithuanian), Dzukish (Dzukiskai), Shamaitish (Lowland Lithuanian, Samogitian, Zemachiai, Zemaitis, Zemaitiskai, Zhemaitish), Suvalkietiskai. Aukstaitiskai easily understand Suvalkai, Dzukai with some difficulty, and vice versa; Zemaitiskai difficult for others to understand.

Typology

Postpositions; genitives, relatives after noun heads

Language Use

All domains. All ages. Also use Russian [rus] or English [eng]. Some have reserved attitudes toward Russian and Polish [pol] use.

Language Development
Literacy rate in L1: 99%. Fully developed. Bible: 1735–1998.
Writing
Gothic script, no longer in use. Latin script.
Other Comments

Christian, Muslim (Tatar).