See also: ilens




Traditionally, this word is seen as borrowed from Gothic 𐌴𐌻𐌰 (ēla, awl), perhaps via Old Prussian ylo (awl). The Gothic e was very narrow (tense), so it was replaced by ī when borrowed. This loanword is first mentioned in 17th-century dictionaries. A more recent theory, however, connects īlens to ilknis (fang, tusk), ilkss (shaft), and with Hittite illuyanka (dragon; snake), where il- apparently refers to something sharp (fang, horn, stinger), in which case īlens might be a retention rather than a borrowing, ultimately from Proto-Indo-European *eil-, *il-, *īl-, from *ei-, *h₁ei- (sharp, pointed), via a probable Proto-Baltic *īl- +‎ -ens.[1]




īlens m (1st declension)

  1. awl (pointed instrument for piercing small holes)
    izdurt caurumus ar īlenuto pierce, prick holes with an awl
    ass ka īlenssharp as an awl
    dur kā ar īlenuit pierces as if with an awl (e.g., sharp pain)



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