Study Friulian from the Bible: Genesis 1, verses 20-25

This post continues your study of the Friulian language through verses from the Bible. You will examine Gjenesi 1:20-25; that is, verses 20-25 of the first chapter of the Book of Genesis.

If you are arriving on this site for the first time, begin your study of the Friulian language here (Gjenesi 1:1).

The Friulian text that you will examine was prepared by Glesie Furlane, in Bibie par un popul. You can read and listen to the Bible in Friulian by following the link.

Here is how to count from twenty to twenty-five in Friulian: vincj (20),vincjeun (21), vincjedoi (22), vincjetrê (23), vincjecuatri (24), vincjecinc (25). You will recall that un and doi are the masculine forms of one and two; their feminine equivalents are une and dôs. When counting, the masculine forms are used (vincj, vincjeun, vincjedoi, vincjetrê…), but the feminine forms are used when they precede a feminine noun: la pagjine vincjedoi (page twenty-two), but vincjedôs pagjinis (twenty-two pages). You can consult a review of counting in Friulian here.

Before you begin your study below, you will need to access the text of the verses in Friulian; you can do so by following one of the links below, which will take you to the Bibie par un popul site:

The reading of these verses in the video starts at 1:34 and ends at 2:53.

Verset 20

There are a number of usages to learn in this verse; they are: il sbulium (gush, outburst), la robe (thing), vîf (alive, living; vive is the feminine form), l’ucel (bird; i ucei is its plural form), svolâ (to fly), in face di (in the face of, in front of; face is a feminine noun).

This verse begins lis aghis che a sedin. Are you able to transform this into singular form? You will recognise this as the third-person plural, coniuntîf presint; what is its third-person singular, coniuntîf presint equivalent?

lis aghis che a sedin
let the waters be

l’aghe ch’e sedi
let the water be

What the waters are to be is a sbulium (gush) of robe vive (living thing). You will recall that dut means all; it is used here to emphasise the importance of the gush: dut un sbulium (a complete gush).

Look now at the verb svolâ (to fly).

al svole
it flies

a svolin
they fly

In the presint indicatîf, the endings of the conjugated svolâ are e (third-person singular) and in (third-person plural). This is the rule of infinitives ending in â.

cjantâ, to sing
al cjante
a cjantin
he sings
they sing

lavorâ, to work
al lavore
a lavorin
he works
they work

Here is how they change in the coniuntîf presint:

che al svoli
che a svolin
let it fly
let them fly

che al cjanti
che al cjantin
let him sing
let them sing

che al lavori
che al lavorin
let him work
let them work

The third-person singular changes its e ending to i; the third-person plural remains unchanged.

al svole
che al svoli
it flies
let it fly

a svolin
che a svolin
they fly
let them fly

al lavore
che al lavori
he works
let him work

a lavorin
che a lavorin
they work
let them work

You will recall that parsore di means above. Parsore de tiere, then, means above the earth. In face de volte dal cîl means in (the) face of the firmament of the heaven (in front of the firmament of the heaven).

Can you say the following in Friulian?

  1. above the earth
  2. above the waters
  3. below the firmament
  4. the firmament of the heaven
  5. the ruler of the day
  6. the ruler of the night
  7. the first book of the Bible

Here are the answers:

  1. parsore de tiere
  2. parsore des aghis
  3. sot de volte
  4. la volte dal cîl
  5. il paron dal dì
  6. il paron de gnot
  7. il prin libri de Bibie

Verset 21

In this verse, a large beast or creature is referred to as une besteone; lis grandis besteonis dal mâr are the great beasts of the sea.

You find two new verbs in this verse: sgliciâ (to slip about), sbuliâ (to teem). You will notice they both take the e ending in their third-person singular, presint indicatîf conjugations: al sglicìe, al sbulìe.

dut ce che al sglicìe
everything that slips about

dut ce che al sbulìe
everything that teems

In the very first verse of Gjenesi 1, you saw tal imprin (in the beginning), which is a contraction of in + l’imprin. In this verse, you now have ta l’aghe, which is a contraction of in + l’aghe.

Here are the contractions of in that you have encountered in the verses:

tal = in + il
tal mieç (in the middle)

tal = in + l’ (masculine)
tal imprin (in the beginning)

te = in + la
te volte (in the firmament)

ta l’ = in + l’ (feminine)
ta l’aghe (in the water)

intun = in + un
intun puest (in one place)

The feminine equivalent of intun is intune (in + une), but you have not encountered this in a verse yet; example: intune citât (in a city, in one city).

You may now wish to consult an overview of Friulian contractions of prepositions and definite articles.

In verse 11, you encountered seont la lôr cualitât (according to their kind). In the current verse, you now have seont la sô raze (according to its kind); the noun here is la raze, meaning sort, kind.

Compare now la sô and la lôr:

la sô cualitât
la lôr cualitât
his; her; its kind
their kind

la sô raze
la lôr raze
his; her; its kind
their kind

la sô citât
la lôr citât
his; her; its city
their city

la sô cjase
la lôr cjase
his; her; its house
their house

La sô and la lôr are followed by a feminine singular noun. With a masculine singular noun, use il so and il lôr (there is no accent in so, unlike in the feminine):

il so libri
il lôr libri
his; her; its book
their book

il so regâl
il lôr regâl
his; her; its gift
their gift

This is how it works with plural nouns:

i siei libris
i lôr libris
his; her; its books
their books

lis sôs cjasis
lis lôr cjasis
his; her; its houses
their houses

You may now wish to consult an overview of Friulian possessive adjectives.

La bestie is another word for beast, creature in this verse; its plural is lis bestiis. Bestiis cu lis alis means beasts with wings, where lis alis is the plural of the feminine l’ale (wing).

Verset 22

This verse begins with alore, meaning then. The verb benedî means to bless; it is used here in the passât sempliç.

Diu al benedì
God blessed

Diu ju benedì
God blessed them

You will notice that al has not appeared in the presence of ju.

Disint (saying) is the present participle of the verb (to say).

Diu ju benedì disint:
God blessed them saying:

In this verse, you encounter the expression lâ in amôr, which, translated very literally, means to go into love. You can understand its use here as meaning to reproduce. Lait is the second-person plural imperative of the verb lâ. Lait, then, means go!, as a command, when speaking to more than one person (or, as in this verse, to more than one creature).

The expression lâ in amôr also appears in this verse as:

i ucei che a ledin in amôr
let the birds reproduce

You have another second-person plural imperative with jemplait, from the verb jemplâ (to fill). Jemplait, then, means fill!, as a command, when speaking to more than one person (or creature).

Verset 23

The only new usage occurring in this verse is the Friulian word for fifth: cuint (masculine), cuinte (feminine).

la prime zornade, la seconde zornade, la tierce zornade, la cuarte zornade, la cuinte zornade

il prin libri, il secont libri, il tierç libri, il cuart libri, il cuint libri

Verset 24

The expression butâ fûr means to bring forth; the verb butâ literally means to throw. Compare this with a similar expression that you have already seen: vignî fûr, meaning to come forth.

al à butât par tiere il libri
he threw the book on the ground

You will recognise the use of the third-person singular, coniuntîf presint in la tiere ch’e buti fûr.

The word for animal in this verse is il nemâl; its plural form is i nemâi. Il besteam means cattle.

The verb strissinâsi means to slither.

si strissinin su la tiere
they slither on the earth

The adjective salvadi (wild) is used to describe lis bestiis in this verse; it is found in its feminine plural form salvadiis.

salvadi (masculine singular)
salvadis (masculine plural)
salvadie (feminine singular)
salvadiis (feminine plural)

Verset 25

In this verse, you will notice that the past participle fat, from the verb (to make), agrees in gender and number with its direct object lis bestiis salvadiis. Here is another example of this, this time using butâ la paste, which literally means to throw the pasta but is understood as meaning to put the pasta on (to cook):

al à butade la paste
he has put the pasta on

You will learn more about this in future posts.

You may now wish to consult these posts: