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The origin of this word is unclear. One possibility is that it a form of the dialectal verb kumt “to bend, to stoop,” from Proto-Indo-European *kew-, *ku- “to swell, to bend” with an extra -m. The initial s would result from variation, as in the case of kumšķis ~ skumšķis (q.v.). The original meaning would thus have been “to bend, to stoop,” presumably from sadness, distress, depression (note the use of the prefix no- in the perfective noskumt; originally, no- denoted upward motion). Another hypothesis suggests a connection with the idea of “dark” or “darkening,” deriving skumt from Proto-Indo-European *kew- “to cover,” from which also Norwegian skume “dark,” Old Norse skūmi “twilight.”[1]


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skumt intr., 1st conj., pres. skumstu, skumsti, skumst, past skumu

  1. to be, become sad, to sadden, to feel sadness, sorrow, to grieve
    skumt par neveiksmēmto be sad about a failure
    un tomēr viņš gaidīja pavasari un skuma, ka ziema ir tik gara un bargaand yet he waited for spring and was sad about winter being so long and harsh
    patiesību sakot, viņš daudz neskuma par Ēvalda aiziešanutruth be told, he wasn't really sad about Ēvalds' departure
    dārznieks skuma pēc sava mīļotā dēla un raudāja žēlas asarasthe gardener grieved for his beloved son and cried sorrowful tears
    vientuļa, tukša skumst pamestā māja, / dūmenī vēji tik pusnaktīs gaudolonely, empty, the abandoned house is sad, / the winds in the chimney howl at midnight



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




  1. absolute indefinite neuter form of skum.