One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A speaker of a Baltic language; a Lithuanian or Latvian.
- ‘Despite large populations of noncitizens, most of whom did not know the local language, there was almost no violence between Balts and Russian-speakers.’
- ‘Song is the soul of the Balts; and their national song festivals feature 30,000-strong choirs.’
2A native or inhabitant of one of the Baltic States of Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia.
- ‘Many Balts had served in the German forces and there were two Latvian and one Estonian SS divisions.’
- ‘Yet most ethnic Balts, who were treated as allies by the Germans but who suffered terribly under Soviet occupation, view the defeat of the Nazis as their own defeat.’
- ‘Ukrainians and Balts went on strike in the spring of 1953.’
- ‘But it also mentioned Stalin's occupation of the Baltic states, his wartime deportations of Balts and others and the contribution made by US lend-lease equipment to the Soviet victory.’
- ‘At different times Stalin conducted mass arrests of Poles, Balts, Chechens, Tartars and on the eve of his death - Jews.’
- 2.1historical A German-speaking inhabitant of any of the Baltic States of Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia.
- ‘Her father was a diplomat and courtier, her mother a German-speaking Balt.’
- ‘Most of the property belonging to German-speaking Balts, especially the estates, was confiscated.’
Late 19th century: from late Latin Balthae ‘dwellers near the Baltic Sea’.
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