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See also: loti



Traditionally considered a borrowing from Slavic, this word has more recently been claimed to come from an older adjective *ļots (evil, terrible) (cf. placenames like Ļotumi), related to Russian лютый (ljutyj, heartless, cruel; angry, furious), and perhaps from the same source as ļauns (evil). The semantic change would be from “terrible, evil” to “very,” a quite frequent change (cf. the use of words like terribly as adverbial intensifiers in e.g. terribly good; the same happens also with briesmīgi (terribly, horribly), šausmīgi (terribly, horribly) in colloquial Latvian).[1]


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  1. (with an adjective or adverb) used to intensify the meaning of the word it accompanies; very
    ļoti gudrs cilvēksvery wise, intelligent person
    ļoti augsta celtnevery tall building
    ļoti grūts darbsvery hard work
    ļoti ātri braukt — to ride very fast
    ļoti klusu runāt — to speak very quietly
    ļoti žēlvery sorry; (it's) a great pity
    ļoti daudzi palīgivery many assistants
    ļoti daudz grāmatuvery many, a lot of books
    ļoti maz naudasvery little money
    naktis uznāca ļoti aukstas un lika klabināt zobus — the nights were coming very cold and made (people's) teeth chatter
    tas bija ļoti tālu, tik tālu, ka paši kalni nebija redzami, tikai virsotnes un sniegs — that was very far, so far that even the mountains were not visible, only the peaks and the snow
  2. (with a verb) used to intensify the action or state described by the verb; much, very much, a lot
    ļoti steigties — to hurry a lot, to be in a big hurry
    ļoti priecāties — to rejoice very much, to be very happy
    ļoti lūgt — to ask very much, to implore
    ļoti skumt — to become very sad
    ļoti iemīļots rakstnieks — a very popular (lit. much beloved) writer
    pēkšņi viņam ļoti iegribējās aizbraukt uz mājām — suddenly he very much wanted to leave and go home
    aiz pirts aug balto ceriņu krūms, kas ziedu laikā tik ļoti patīik māmuļai — behind the bath(room) a white lilac bush is growing which when in bloom so much pleases mother




  1. ^ “ļoti” in Konstantīns Karulis (1992, 2001), Latviešu Etimoloģijas Vārdnīca, in 2 vols, Rīga: AVOTS, ISBN: 9984-700-12-7