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Latvia

Geography

Latvia borders on Estonia in the north, Lithuania in the south, on the Baltic Sea and the Gulf of Riga in the West, Russia in the east and Belarus in the southeast. In Latvia the fertile lowland with numerous lakes and hills generally prevails.

Form of government

Parliamentary democracy.

History

The tribes living along the Baltic Sea fell a victim of more powerful people and in the 13th century and were united in Livonian Brothers Sword, the German knights which mission consisted in winning and converting to Christianity. In 1561 the earth became part of the State of Livonia. Germans made ruling class of Livonia, and the Baltic tribes - the peasantry. German was official language of area.

Poland won the territory of Latvia in 1562, then Sweden took charge of Latvia in 1629 and owned it to 1721. Then the territory was transferred to Russia. With 1721 to 1918 Latvians remained the Russian subjects though kept the language, customs and folklore.

Revolution of 1917 gave the chance of Latvia to leave the union and on November 18, 1918 the Republic of Latvia was declared by the independent. The happiness lasted about 20 years, however, exhausted by political instability, Latvia in essence suffered from dictatorship of the president Karlis Urmanis. The country was occupied with the Russian troops in 1939, and reunited with the Soviet Union in 1940. With 1941 to 1944 German troops occupied the country. From 70,000 Jews living in Latvia during World War II 95% were destroyed. In 1944 Russia again assumed management of Latvia.


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List of top cities of Latvia (9)

City Picture Info Page
Daugavpils Daugavpils Daugavpils
Jekabpils Jekabpils Jekabpils
Jelgava Jelgava Jelgava
Jurmala Jurmala Jurmala
Liepaja Liepaja Liepaja
Rezekne Rezekne Rezekne
Riga Riga Riga
Valmiera Valmiera Valmiera
Ventspils Ventspils Ventspils