From the same stem as the verb aut (“to put on (footwear)”): *ap-aw-as > apavs. The original meaning, probably “bandage,” “covering (cloth),” was already often connected to footwear in 17th- and 18th-century texts, though not obligatorily (cf. expressions like kāju apavs “foot apavs” in folk tales). Cognates include Lithuanian ãpavas, Russian обувь (óbuv’), Czech obuv, Polish obuw.
apavs m (1st declension)
- footwear (shoes, boots, sandals, etc.)
- ādas, gumijas apavi — leather, rubber footwear, shoes
- vasaras, ziemas apavi — summer, winter fotwear, shoes
- viegli, smagi apavi — light, heavy footwear, shoes
- mājas apavi — home, indoor shoes, footwear
- labot apavus — to mend, to repair shoes, fotwear
- kurpnieks novietoja kurpi uz plaukta blakus citiem labojamiem apaviem — the cobbler placed the shoe on the shelf, next to the other footwear to be mended
- gaumīgi iekārtotajās veikala telpās vitrinās izvietotas dāždažādu lielumu, fasonu un krāsu kurpes un citi apavi — in the indoor showcases of a tastefully decorated shop one places shoes and other footwear of various sizes, styles and colors
- un pēkšņi šķiet: ir apavs caurs — and suddenly it seemed: the shoe has a hole
Latvian apavi is more frequently used than English footwear and is often better translated as shoes (cf. Russian обувь (óbuv’)). Note also that the plural forms (apavi, etc.) are much more frequently used than the singular forms (apavs, etc.)
- ^ “apavs” in Konstantīns Karulis (1992, 2001), Latviešu Etimoloģijas Vārdnīca (Rīga: AVOTS) ISBN: 9984-700-12-7.
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