liels

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Latvian[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

From Proto-Indo-European *lei- (to decrease, to disappear; thin, slim, slender) (maybe from the stem *el- (hungry)), with an extra suffix -l. The semantic development was probably: “thin, slender” > “long, tall (big in height)” > “remarkable because of size, significance.” A more recent suggestion derives liels from Proto-Indo-European *lei- (to pour, to flow, to drip) (again with an extra -l), with the meaning changing from “to pour” > “to even, to smooth (by pouring, casting)” > “to iron, to press” > “to make thin by pressing (e.g., a metal sheet)” > “to extend, increase (by pressing),” from which the meaning “big, large.” Cognates include Lithuanian leĩlas (thin, slender; thin, watery), leĩnas (thin, slender; thin, flexible) (dialectal liẽlas (big, large) is a borrowing from Latvian), Old Prussian lailīsnan (torture (accusative)) (> inifinitive *lailītwei, in turn from *leil- (narrow, thin)), Gothic 𐌻𐌴𐌹𐍄𐌹𐌻𐍃 (leitils, small, little), Ancient Greek λειρός (leirós, smooth, thin, delicate) (compare λιμός (limós, hunger, starvation)).[1]

Pronunciation[edit]

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Adjective[edit]

liels (def. lielais, comp. lielāks, sup. vislielākais; adv. lieli)

  1. big, large (being more than the size of other similar objects, creatures, etc.)
    liels trauksbig bowl
    liels cilvēks, dzīvniekslarge person, animal
    lielas rokaslarge hands
    liels ezersbig lake
    liela pilsētalarge city
  2. big, large (being more than the appropriate size)
    kurpes ir par lielām — the shoes are too big
  3. big, large (going a longer distance)
    liels atvēziensbig swing
  4. (of sounds) intense, loud
    mašīnu troksnis bija tik liels, ka cilvēku sarunas tikko varēja sadzirdēt — the machine noise was so loud that one could hardly hear conversations
  5. high, great, large (having a higher numerical value than usual or normal)
    liels ātrums, blīvums, spiedienshigh speed, density, pressure
    liels svarsgreat, heavy weight
    liels skaitslarge number, amount
    liels skaitlislarge number, cipher
    liela peļņalarge profit
    liela naudalarge (sum of) money
    liels piena izlaukumshigh milk yield
    liela taukvielu koncentrācijahigh fat concentration
  6. used with numerical values (in the accusative)
    simt paskalu liels spiediens — a pressure of (lit. big of) 100 pascals
    divas tonnas liela masa — a mass of (lit. big of) two tons
    vienu metru liels diametrs — a diameter of (lit. big of) one meter
    Andoras republikas teritorija ir 465 kvadrātkilometrus liela — the territory of the Republic of Andorra is 465 square kilometers (lit. 465 square kilometers big)
  7. big, grown-up, adult
    Liene ar Juri izauga lieli — Liene and Juri grew big (= grew up)
    lielie ļaudis nav slikti, vismaz tādi kā Ilgas vecmāmiņabig people (= grown-ups) are not bad, at least those like Ilga's grandmother
  8. big, large (having many members; )
    liela ģimenelarge family
  9. (of feelings, mental states) big, intense (more intense, more intensely felt)
    liels uztraukums, nogurumsbig excitement, tiredness
    lielas bēdasgreat sorrow
    liela mīlestībagreat love
  10. big, major, important (having strong influence, being strongly felt, having an impact)
    liels trūkumsbig drawback
    liela nabadzībagreat poverty
    dzīvot lielā pārticībā — to live in great prosperity
    saņemt lielu dāvanu — to receive a big present
  11. (of events, actions) more intense, with more intense effects
    liels uzbrukumslarge attack
    liela cīņabig fight
    lieli svētkibig holidays, big celebration
  12. (of duty, position) important, influential
    liels amatsgreat, important position, office
  13. (of situations) great, big (offering many possibilities)
    lielas priekšrocībasgreat advantages
    liela izvēlebig choice
  14. (of people) great, very skilled; passionate; notable, excellent
    liels amatnieks, organizators, palīgsgreat craftsman, organizer, helper
    liela šuvējagreat seamstress
    liels grāmatu lāsītājsgreat book reader
    liels makšķernieksgreat fisherman
    liels rakstnieks, gleznotājs, mūziķis, melisgreat writer, painter, musician, storyteller
    liels varonisgreat hero
    lieli draugigreat friends
  15. (of people) big, important, rich
    liels muižnieksgreat lord, gentleman
    liels namīpašnieksgreat landlord
  16. (of events, art, time periods) great, major, important, significant, influential
    lielais karš — the great war
    izvirzīt lielus mērķus — to identify major goals
    lielais baletsgreat ballet
    liels laikmets rada lielu dzeju — a great era creates great poetry
Declension[edit]
Synonyms[edit]
Antonyms[edit]
Derived terms[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

Liels

From Proto-Indo-European *lei- (to bend), from the stem *el- (to bend), whence also elkonis (elbow)); compare also laiva (boat), leja (valley). The original meaning was probably “bending, curvature.” A similar semantic development can be seen in Sanskrit आणिः (āṇiḥ, leg above knee) (< *arṇí- < *elni-), Armenian ոլոք (olokʿ, shinbone) (< *elok- / *olok-). Another suggestion has liels (shin, calf (of leg)) be the nominalized form of the adjective liels (great, large, big) with intonational change.[1]

Pronunciation[edit]

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Noun[edit]

liels m (1st declension)

  1. (anatomy) shin (part of the leg from the knee to the ankle; syn. apakšstilbs, stilbs)
    tikai nupat viņš sajuta sūrstošas sāpes kreisās kājas lielā — only then did he feel a sharp pain in his left leg's shin
  2. an annual hard widening or growth on a tree (especially conifer) trunk on one side (e.g., on spruces)
Synonyms[edit]
  • (annual hard widening or growth on a tree): lielainums
Declension[edit]
Synonyms[edit]

References[edit]

  1. 1.0 1.1 “liels” in Konstantīns Karulis (1992, 2001), Latviešu Etimoloģijas Vārdnīca, in 2 vols, Rīga: AVOTS, ISBN: 9984-700-12-7