Latvian alphabet

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The Latvian alphabet is based on the Latin alphabet and includes additional diacritical marks .

The letters

Aa Āā Bb Cc Čč Dd Ee Ēē Ff Gg Ģģ Hh Ii Īī Jj Kk Ķķ Ll Ļļ Mm Nn Ņņ Oo Pp Rr Ss Šš Tt Uu Ūū Vv Zz Žž

Diacritical marks

Macron (Āā Ēē Īī Ūū)

For all vowels except the O, it is the macron that denotes a long pronunciation of the vowel. In contrast, all vowels without a macron are pronounced briefly. This is often unusual, especially for German ears. Example: in the nominative of Rīga , the a is pronounced briefly, unlike the locative : Rīgā (German meaning: in Riga ). Here both vowels are pronounced long.

The pronunciation of the O exists in three variants: short, long or as a diphthong [uo] , which are all represented by the same letter.


The letters č , š and ž contain a hatschek .

The pronunciation is:

  • č like ch
  • š how sch
  • ž like journal

Comma (undersign)

The letters ģ (capital: Ģ ), ķ , ļ and ņ contain a comma .

The pronunciation is:

  • ģ like dj , not like dsch in jeans or like the Russian soft "g" like in Ев г ений
  • ķ also not like the soft k in Russian, but like tj
  • ļ like lj
  • ņ like nj