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Alternative forms[edit]


PIE root

A borrowing from Middle Low German könink ‎(king), or from Middle Dutch coninc ‎(ruler) (cf. German König, Dutch koning, English king), parallel forms to Middle Low German kunig (whence Latvian kungs ‎(lord, sir, Mr.), q.v.). The word was borrowed during the 17th century, in different forms, depending on dialect: konings, koniņš > archaic ķoniņš; kēnings > ķēniņš. The form ķēniņš stabilized in the 18th century. Nowadays, except for a few expressions, ķēniņš has largely been replaced by its synonym karalis (q.v.).[1]


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ķēniņš m (1st declension, feminine form: ķēniņiene)

  1. (dated) king (the monarch of a kingdom)
    kungs un kēniņš — lord and king (expression used to address a king)
    būt kungam un kēniņam — to be lord and king (to be the absolute chief)
    zvēru kēniņš — the king of beasts (i.e., the lion)
    kēniņa pils — the king's castle, the royal castle
    ik vakarus ministrs ziņoja, ka viss kārtībā, un neviena ļauna skaņa neaizskāra kēniņa ausis — every evening the minister reported that everything (was) fine, and no bad sounds reached the king's ears
    pašreizīgas saimnieks varēja būt pilnīgs kungs un kēniņš savā namā, savā zemē — the current owner could be fully lord and king in his own house, in his own land


Usage notes[edit]

Except for a few expressions, ķēniņš has mostly been replaced by its synonym karalis in current usage.


Derived terms[edit]


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