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See also: ists and -ists


Alternative forms[edit]


This word has the same origin as Latin demonstrative pronoun iste (this): a combination of Proto-Baltic *jis (cf. Lithuanian jis (he)), from Proto-Indo-European *ey (third-person pronoun), and *te, from *tód (that) (also the source of tas (that), q.v.). The original meaning was therefore demonstrative — “that very one” — from which came the sense of “same, real, legitimate, exact” and changed morphologically into an adjective. Cognates include Old Church Slavonic истъ (istŭ, real, true), Russian истый (ístyj), Bulgarian ист (ist, the same), исто (isto, also like that), Slovene îsti (the same), Czech jistý (certain, sure, definite). It has also been suggested, on the basis of the dialectal variant īksts, that this word should be compared with Lithuanian áiškus (clear, understandable; beautiful, pleasant) (dialectal variants ýškus, ìščias), which has the same origin as Proto-Slavic *ěsknъ (cf. Russian ясный (jásnyj, clear, bright)). It is, however, more likely that the k in the dialectal term īksts has simply been inserted by epenthesis.[1]


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īsts (definite īstais, comparative īstāks, superlative visīstākais, adverb īsti)

  1. real, true, genuine, not false or artificial
    īsts zeltsreal, genuine gold
    īsta naudagenuine, real money (not falsified)
    īstas ādas somagenuine leather bag
    atrast savu īsto vietuto find one's true place (in life)
  2. (usually definite forms) the real, the true (that which corresponds to reality but is hidden behind external appearances)
    noskaidrot kāda īsto nolūkuto find out someone's real, true intent
    slēpt īsto raksturuto hide the true character, nature
    atsegt, atklāt savu īsto sejuto reveal, to expose one's true face
  3. (usually definite forms) the real, the true (official, registered, corresponding to documents)
    uzņēmuma īstais nosaukumsthe company's real name
    mans īstais vārds ir Jānis Nesaule, bet parasti mani sauc par dzīvo mironimy real name is Jānis Nesaule, but usually I'm called the living corpse
  4. true, real (which corresponds to certain ideals or requirements)
    īsts draugsa real friend
    īsts zinātnieksa real scientist
    īsta zinātnereal, true science
    māksla tikai tad ir īsta un paliekama, ja to veidojis savdabīgs, īpats, neatdarināms talantsart is true and self-supporting if it is created by original, special, inimitable talent
  5. true, real (deeply felt, experienced; intense, significant)
    īsts miersreal peace
    īsta laimereal, true happiness
    īsta draudzībatrue friendship
    īsts darbsreal work
    īstas kaujasreal battle, fighting
  6. true, real (not imaginary, not just apparent, not a model or image)
    Marija taču īstu mežu nebija redzējusibut Marija had not (yet) seen a real forest
  7. (usually definite forms) true (the best part, a prototypical example, one felt to be more typical of the true nature of something)
    īstā ādatrue skin (between the epidermis and the dermis)
    īsts daļskaitlistrue fraction (one in which the numerator is less than the denominator)
  8. (usually definite forms) true, right (the most appropriate, the most suitable, the best, the correct)
    atrast īsto atbildito find the real, the right answer
    dot īsto padomuto give real, true, right advice
    esmu īstā laika atnācisI have come at the right (= appropriate) time
  9. (definite forms used alone) the one, the true one, the one and only (a person's true love, soulmate)
    vai tikai Mirdza būs Ērikam tā īstā?is only Mirdza Ēriks' true one (= true love)?
  10. (definite forms; of family relations) true, genuine (which has real blood relations)
    īsta māsatrue, genuine sister
    pabaros Irma bērnus ar pankūkām, varbūt tie šovakar nejautās pēc īstās mātesIrma will feed the children with pancakes, maybe tonight they won't ask about (their) real mother



Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]


  1. ^ Karulis, Konstantīns (1992), “īsts”, in Latviešu Etimoloģijas Vārdnīca (in Latvian), Rīga: AVOTS, →ISBN