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From Proto-Baltic *mil-, *mul- (with an extra -k), from Proto-Indo-European *melh₂-, *ml̥h₂- (to push, to crush, to grate, to grind) (whence also malt (to grind, to mill), q.v.). The semantic evolution was probably “to grind” > “to get lost” (via a comparison between grinding movements and the aimless motion of someone who got lost; see the etymology of maldināt (to mislead, to deceive)) > “to be confused, bewildered” > (nominalized) “confused person” > “stupid person”. Cognates include Lithuanian mùlkis, Sanskrit मल्व (malvá, stupid, foolish, unwise), Ancient Greek βλᾱ́ξ (blā́x, coward; stubborn; stupid) (< *mlāk-). A related word is Russian молча́ть (molčátʹ, to be silent) (< *mъlkēti).[1]




muļķis m (2nd declension, feminine form: muļķe)

  1. (male) fool, stupid man (man with little intelligence)
    uzskatīt, turēt kādu par muļķito consider someone a fool
    zvejot prot katrs muļķis; nodot zivis, tā ir mākslaany fool can catch fish; to deliver the fish, now that is an art
    muļķis! viņš savā stulbumā bija iznīcinājis manu pašu labāko foreļu vietufool! he in his stupidity had destroyed my own best trout (catching) place



Derived terms[edit]


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