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Borrowed from Old East Slavic небогъ (nebogŭ, poor) or from Belarusian небог (njebóh), небога (njebóha) (cf. Old Church Slavonic небогъ (nebogŭ)); Lithuanian nabãgas is likewise a borrowing from Slavic. Like its opposite bagāts (rich) (q.v.), its basic stem is the same as Old Church Slavonic богъ (bogŭ, happiness; abundance, riches; god), so the original meaning in Slavic was probably “(one) whom god gave nothing.” The word was borrowed into Latvian before the 13th century and used from the beginning both as a noun and as an adjective.[1]




nabags m (1st declension, feminine form: nabadze)

  1. poor man, pauper (man, or in general a person, who cannot provide for himself and lives from the charity of others)
    pilsēta, pagasta nabagicity, parish poor
    akls, klibs, vecs nabagsblind, lame, old poor man
    kļūt par nabaguto become a poor man
    nabaga dāvanaalms (lit. donation to the poor)
    kad nabags redz cita cilvēka bagātību, viņš jūtas vēl nabagākswhen a poor man sees another person's riches, he feels even poorer
  2. (often in the genitive, used as an adjective) poor man (man, or in general a person, who deserves pity; in this sense, the diminutive form nabadziņš is more frequently used)
    nabaga bērns, meitenepoor child, girl
    nabaga sunītis salst ārāthe poor dog is freezing outside
    skolotāji mani plucināja aiz ausīm, bet tēvs, nabags, pacietību zaudējis, kaustīja ar striķa galuthe teachers pulled my ears, but (my) father, poor him, having lost his patience, hit me with a piece of rope



nabags (definite nabagais, comparative nabagāks, superlative visnabagākais, adverb nabagi)

  1. poor (who lacks possessions, the means of surviving)
    nabagais kaimiņšthe poor neighbor
    viņš ir ļoti nabagshe is very poor
    pasaulē nav neviens tik nabags, ka tas navarētu tomēr vēl kādam palīdzētin the world there is nobody so poor that he can't really help someone else
    kad nabags redz cita cilvēka bagātību, viņš jūtas vēl nabagākswhen a poor man sees another person's riches, he feels even poorer
  2. poor (having, containing little or none of something, especially something important, valuable or useful)
    zivīm nabaga upea river poor in fish
    ar kokiem nabaga zemeland poor in trees
    upe sekla, vasarā ūdeņiem nabagathe river is shallow, in the summer (it is) poor in water
    visnabagākā ar palmām ir Eiropa: te aug tikai viena palma, pundurpalmathe poorest (continent) in palm trees is Europe: here, only one palm tree grows, the palmetto tree
  3. poor (not sufficiently varied and diverse, in form, nuances, parts; one-sided, limited)
    cik dzīve nabaga! cik maz tai laba! un, ak, cik maz ir skaista! poor life is! how little good it has! and, ah! how little beauty it (has, is)!...
    jo augstāk mēs tikām, jo ainava kļuva nabagākathe higher up we got (= climbed), the poorer the landscape became
    faktiem un pierādījumiem nabags viņa ievadrakstshis editorial (was) poor in facts and evidence
  4. (of the mind, the psyche, the spirit) poor, shallow, not sensitive
    Jorena psiholoģiska līnija ir inerta, dvēseliski nabagaJorens' psychological line is inert, spiritually poor




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