An inmate of a Soviet labor camp.
Origin of zek
- Russian from abbr. for zaklyuchënnyĭ prisoner from past passive participle of zaklyuchat' to imprison from klyuch key from Old Church Slavonic ključĭ
From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition
- From Russian Ð·ÑÐº (zÃ¨k), probably representing a pronunciation of Ð·/Ðº (z/k), Soviet abbreviation of Ð·Ð°ÐºÐ»ÑŽÑ‡Ñ‘Ð½Ð½Ñ‹Ð¹ (zakljuÄÃ«nnyj, “prisoner").