Latvia Overview

Country Profile

Latvia is on the eastern Baltic coast and is also known as the Republic of Latvia. Latvia means “metal clothes.” Covering an area of 64,600 square kilometers, it has a population of 2.33 million people, mainly ethnic Latvians and Russians. Residents are Protestant Christian. The official language is Latvian, and 95% of the people know Russian. LVL is the currency. The capital is Riga (Riga).

Latvia National Flag

The Latvian flag consists of three parallel rectangles, from the top down colored dark red, white, and dark red. The Latvian flag is a symbol of national unity.

Latvia Country Flag

History Summary

In the 10 century AD, a number of early feudal principalities were established. From 1583 to 1710, Latvia was under the rule of Sweden, Poland, Lithuania, and Duchy divide. From 1710 to 1795, it was occupied by Tsarist Russia. On November 18, 1918, Latvia declared independence and established the Republic. On August 5, 1940, it was incorporated into the Soviet Union. From 1941-1945, Latvia was occupied by the Germans. After “World War II” it was re-incorporated into the Soviet Union. On May 4, 1990, the restoration of Latvian Supreme Soviet adopted the Declaration of Independence, and changed the country’s name to the Republic of Latvia. On August 22, 1991, Latvia restored the Supreme Soviet of the Republic of Latvia and declared independence.

Economy and Culture Overview

The country has well-developed animal husbandry, mainly dual-purpose dairy and meat and pig husbandry. Main crops are potatoes, sugar beet, and flax. Riga is the capital and is one of the ancient cities of Europe. It is the political, economic, cultural, and transportation center, and it is an important port city. In the Old City there are castles illustrating the history and style of art, with many churches and other places of interest as well. The town has wide, clean streets and magnificent architecture. There are fountains everywhere, as well as monuments and sculpture. Latvia’s traditional industry is machinery. In addition, metal processing, the chemical industry, papermaking, textiles, and the food industry are all well-developed.

St. Peter’s Cathedral

Located in Riga City, the ancient church was built in the 13th to 14th century AD. From 1689 to 1694 the Church decorated both sides in the popular Baroque style. Its smooth lines have prominent graphics and are decorated with beautiful portraits, known for their luxury. Its spire reaches up to 123.2 meters. Its tower is topped with a golden weathercock.

Dome Cathedral

In Latvia’s capital Riga, the Dome Cathedral is located in the “June 17” square. As the construction process took more than five centuries, so its style reflects many periods of time. The architecture is of ornate, elaborate style. Finally, the cathedral is not only in Roman Gothic style, but also has characteristics of the Renaissance. In 1884, the church had a large organ installed. This pipe organ is formed from 6,768 wooden pipes, of varying lengths from 8 mm to 10 meters. With its precious combination of wood, tin, and lead alloys, the organ’s sound is reputed to be the best in the world, soft and beautiful.

Latvia Map

Latvia Map

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