Г-н Фаршеклоакин (spamsink) wrote in linguaphiles,
Г-н Фаршеклоакин

Latvian next stop

Earlier this month I was in Riga, Latvia for a week, never having visited it before, and enjoying an unfamiliar but vaguely understandable language (a have a recollection that there used to be a Balto-Slavic branch of languages mentioned in popular literature; now it seems that Baltic and Slavic languages are not grouped anymore).

Naturally, the phrase most often heard while riding public transportation is "nākamā pietura" (next stop). In an e-mail to a linguaphile friend, who had visited Latvia when it was still a Soviet republic, I referred to the next city in my itinerary using "nākamā pietura".
He got confused, because he remembered the phrase as "nākoša pietura".

(nākoša/nākamā are feminine forms of nākošais/nākamāis)

An explanation of the difference I was given is that "nākošais" is active (~"approaching"), while "nākamāis" is passive (~"being approached"), and as bus stops don't move by themselves, "nākamāis" is formally more correct. I've heard people still saying "nākoša pietura". I wonder what prompted the change in pre-recorded messages and when.

Does anyone know?
Tags: latvian

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