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From Proto-Baltic *skait-, from an ablaut variant of Proto-Indo-European *skey- (to cut; to separate). The original meaning was thus “cut (off),” apparently a reference to incisions made on wood to mark numbers or quantities (a custom found among many peoples, and also among ancient Latvians); the noun skaits “number” would have originally meant “incision,” and the verb skaitīt “to make incisions” > “to mark the number,” “to count.” It is also possible that another stem, proposed by some researchers as the source of skaitīt: Proto-Indo-European *kʷeit- (to observe) (> Russian честь (čestʹ, honor), Sanskrit चेतति (cétati, to notice, observe), केतः (kétaḥ, will, intention, tendency, invitation)), has converged historically with *skey- in this word. Cognates include Lithuanian skaitýti (to read; to count; to calculate), Proto-Slavic *čisti, *čitati “to read, to count,” from earlier Proto-Slavic *kitō or *skitō (Old Church Slavonic чисти (čisti, to count), first person present tense чьтѫ (čĭtǫ), Russian читать (čitát’, to read), dialectal and archaic честь (čest’, to read, to count), Bulgarian чета (četá, to read), dialectal четъ (četǎ́, to count), Czech čítat (to read, to count), čísti (to read), Polish czytać (to read), Old Polish czyść), Gothic 𐍃𐌺𐌰𐌹𐌳𐌰𐌽 (skaidan), German scheiden (to divide, to separate).[1]


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skaitīt tr. or intr., 3rd conj., pres. skaitu, skaiti, skaita, past skaitīju

  1. to count (to say the numbers in order)
    skaitīt līdz desmitto count to ten
    skaitīt uz priekšu un atpakaļto count up and down
    iemacīties skaitītto learn (how) to count
    sensenos laikos cilvēks partis skaitīt tikai līdz diviin ancient times, people could count only (up) to two
    Annele putnu gaidot skaita: divdesmit, piecdesmit, simtu, divi simti... bet debess paliek kā izmirusiAnnnele, waiting for the bird(s), counted: twenty, fifty, a hundred, two hundred... but the sky remained as if dead
  2. to count (to establish how many objects, people, etc. there are in a given group by assigning to each of them a number in order)
    skaitīt grāmatasto count books
    skaitīt nauduto count money
    skaitīt balsisto count votes
    skaitīt ar pirkstiemto count on (one's) fingers
    skaitāmie kauliņiabacus (lit. countable beads)
    viņš skaitīja, cik katra loga restēm caurumiņuhe counted how many holes (there) were on the window grill
    vecais sienas pulkstenis gurdi skaita sekundes, kas kļūst par minūtēm un stundāmthe old wall clock tiredly counts the seconds that (in turn) become minutes and hours
    agrāk šādus smilšu pulksteņus lietoja, skaitot slimnieka pulsuearlier they used such hourglasses (when) taking (lit. counting) a person's pulse
  3. to count (to measure the time from a certain event on)
    Latvijā futbola sākumu skaita ar 1907. gadu, kad Rīgā organizēja pirmo futbola kolektīvuthe beginning of soccer in Latvia is counted with (= from) 1907, when the first soccer team was organized in Riga
  4. to count (syllables), to scan, to recite (poetry), to pray prayer)
    vīri un sievas... klusībā skaita tēvreizi — men and women... quietly counted (= scanned, recited) the Lord's prayer
    man sarīkojumā bija jāskaita Aspazijas dzejolisat the party I had to count (= recite) Aspazija's poem
  5. to recite (to speak monotonously, usually repeating the same words)
    “trepes, trepes, trepes”, Zvans skanīja, gudrodams, kur vislabāk tās meklēt“stairs, stairs, stairs,” Zvans recited, wondering where he could find them
    “nakts un tumsa... nakts un tumsa...” viņas lūpas skaita šos divus vārdus“night and darkness... night and darkness...” her lips recited these two words
    Gunta jau attin ēdamlietu saini pie galda un skaita skaļā balsī: “halva, pīrāgi, kotletes, sviests, rieksti” — Gunta unwrapped the foodstuffs on the table and recited aloud: “halva, pies, meatballs, butter, nuts”
  6. to count (something) as (something) (to consider something as part of some group; to belive something to be true, to have happened)
    mani lūdzu neskaitīt līdzplease don't count me in
    skaitīt kādu par izglītotuto count (= consider) someone as educated
    ja Daņilovas gravai pārbrauksim, varam skaitīt, ka esam mājāsif (= when) we will have passed Daņilova's glen, we can count (ourselves) (already0 at home


Derived terms[edit]

prefixed verbs:
other derived terms:

Related terms[edit]

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