Study Friulian from the Bible: Genesis 4, verses 8-16

You will now continue your study of the Friulian language through verses from the Bible by examining Gjenesi 4:8-16; that is, verses 8-16 of the fourth 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).

In the notes below pertaining to the ninth verse, you will learn the present indicative conjugation of the irregular Friulian verbs volê and savê.

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.

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 1:28 and ends at 3:42.

Verset 8

The Friulian verb barufâ means to argue.

al barufà cun so fradi
he argued with his brother

You will note the absence of the definite article in the Friulian for his brother; it is expressed as so fradi.

Recall the third-person plural, imperfet indicatîf conjugation of the verb jessi; it is a jerin (they were).

cuant che a jerin
when they were

Note in the above that when is rendered by cuant che.

The adjective plen means full; its feminine form is plene. The Friulian la campagne means field, country.

in plene campagne
out in the field
(literally, in full field)

Cuintri di means against, and butâ is the Friulian verb for to throw. The expression butâsi cuintri di, then, translates literally as to throw oneself against; however, you can understand this expression as meaning to attack, to rise up against.

si butà cuintri di so fradi
he rose up against his brother

The final verb that you encounter in this verse is copâ, meaning to kill.

lu copà
he killed him

Verset 9

The verb domandâ means to ask. In Friulian, you ask a question to someone; this is why you find the use of the indirect i (to him) and a Cain (to Cain) in the following:

il Signôr i domandà a Cain
the Lord asked Cain

The verse continues with a question. First, review the following:

al è
isal?
he is
is he?

Isal is the interrogative form of al è. This interrogative form is not only used in yes-no questions; in this verse, for example, it follows dulà (where).

dulà esal to fradi Abêl?
where is your brother Abel?

In this verse, rather than isal, you find esal.

Here are more examples of this taken from the Bible:

cui esal stât? (Judiçs 15:6)
who was it?

esal ancjemò vîf gno pari? (Gjenesi 45:3)
is my father still alive?

cuâl isal il pecjât di Jacop? (Michee 1:5)
what is the sin of Jacob?

isal cualchidun ch’al scolte? (Salms 59:8)
is there anyone who is listening?

You will remember that the verb rispuindi means to respond. After this verb, you come across another question in the text:

ce vûstu che o sepi jo?
how am I supposed to know?
(literally, what do you want that I know?)

The two verbs in question here are volê (to want) and savê (to know).

tu tu vûs
tu vûs
you want

ce vûstu?
what do you want?

jo o sai
o sai
I know

Rather than o sai, which is the first-person singular, presint indicatîf conjugation of the verb savê, you find the first-person singular, coniuntîf presint conjugation o sepi, which is required after the expression volê che (to want that):

ce vûstu che o sepi jo?
how am I supposed to know?
(literally, what do you want that I know?)

It would be good to familiarise yourself now with the present indicative conjugation of the irregular verbs volê and savê.

Present indicative of volê

affirmative
interrogative
jo
(I)
o vuei
(I want)
vuelio?
(I want?)
tu
(you)
tu vuelis, tu vûs
(you want)
vuelistu?, vûstu?
(you want?)
lui
(he)
al vûl
(he wants)
vuelial?
(he wants?)

(she)
e vûl
(she wants)
vuelie?
(she wants?)

(we)
o volìn
(we want)
volìno?
(we want?)
vualtris
(you)
o volês
(you want)
volêso?
(you want?)
lôr
(they)
a vuelin
(they want)
vuelino?
(they want?)

Present indicative of savê

affirmative
interrogative
jo
(I)
o sai
(I know)
saio?
(I know?)
tu
(you)
tu sâs
(you know)
sâstu?
(you know?)
lui
(he)
al sa
(he knows)
saial?
(he knows?)

(she)
e sa
(she knows)
saie?
(she knows?)

(we)
o savìn
(we know)
savìno?
(we know?)
vualtris
(you)
o savês
(you know)
savêso?
(you know?)
lôr
(they)
a san
(they know)
sano?
(they know?)

You may also now wish to review the present indicative of the verb jessi.

jo o soi
o soi

I am

soio jo?
soio?

am I?

The Friulian word for keeper, guard is il vuardian. (The spelling vuardean is found in this verse.)

sojo jo il vuardean di gno fradi?
am I the keeper of my brother?

Verset 10

You have encountered dissal before; you first saw it in the post pertaining to Gjenesi 3:8-13.

In this verse, you come across yet another interrogative form in ce âstu fat:

tu tu âs fat
tu âs fat
you did; have done

ce âstu fat?
what have you done?

The verb sintî means to hear; its first-person singular, presint indicatîf conjugation is o sint. The masculine il sanc means blood.

o sint il sanc di to fradi
I hear the blood of your brother

The verb berlâ means to yell, to cry out. Viers di translates as towards; viers di me, then, means towards me or, in more biblical style, unto me.

il sanc di to fradi che al berle
the blood of your brother that cries out
the blood of your brother that yells

berlâ de tiere viers di me
to cry out unto me from the ground

Verset 11

You will recall the meaning of the expression di chi indenant, meaning from now on. It translates literally as from here ahead.

You have seen the verb maludî (to curse) a number of times now.

tu sarâs maludît
you shall be cursed

As for the expression parâ fûr (to drive out), you first encountered it in the third chapter of Genesis, specifically in the post pertaining to Gjenesi 3:14-24, when you read that God drove Adam out of the garden of Eden: il Signôr Diu lu parà fûr dal zardin dal Eden.

In the current verse, now, you read:

tu sarâs parât fûr
you shall be driven out

In this verse, you read cheste tiere (this ground). Now is a good time to review the four forms of the Friulian word for this, these: chest (masculine singular), cheste (feminine singular), chescj (masculine plural), chestis (feminine plural). Examples:

chest om, this man
chescj oms, these men
cheste femine, this woman
chestis feminis, these women

The Friulian verb spalancâ means to open wide. You read that the ground opened its mouth wide to “suck up” the blood of Cain’s slain brother:

la tiere e à spalancade la sô bocje
the ground opened its mouth wide

par supâ il sanc di to fradi
to suck up the blood of your brother

The verb supâ translates as to suck, to suck up. A few examples taken from the Grant Dizionari Bilengâl Talian-Furlan (GDB):

supâ l’aghe di naranç cul fros
to suck up the orange juice with a straw
(il naranç, orange; l’aghe di naranç, orange juice; il fros, straw)

lis sanguetis a supin il sanc
leeches suck blood
(la sanguete, leech)

la pavee e supe il netar
the butterfly sucks the nectar
(la pavee, butterfly; il netar, nectar)

You will notice that the past participle of the verb spalancâ is accorded in this verse in the feminine singular, to agree with the feminine bocje following it: e à spalancade la sô bocje.

Verset 12

This verse begins with the second-person singular, presint indicatîf conjugation of the verb lavorâ:

se tu lavoris la tiere
if you work the ground

The verb butâ is to be understood here in the sense of to produce, to bring forth.

no ti butarà plui nuie
to you it shall no longer bring forth anything
to you it shall not bring forth anything anymore

No… plui in the above means no longer, no more, not anymore.

no vuei viodilu plui
I no longer want to see him
I do not want to see him anymore

no lu viodè plui
he no longer saw him
he did not see him anymore

Nuie means nothing, not anything.

no ai fat nuie
I did nothing
I did not do anything

no ai viodût nuie
I saw nothing
I did not see anything

No… plui nuie, then, translates as no longer anything, not anything anymore, etc.

no ti butarà plui nuie
to you it shall no longer bring forth anything
to you it shall not bring forth anything anymore

Un torzeon (or torseon) means vagabond, wanderer. The verb scjampâ means to flee.

tu sarâs un torseon
you shall be a vagabond
you shall be a wanderer

ti tocjarà di scjampâ su la tiere
you shall have to flee in the earth
(that is, you shall be a fugitive in the earth)

You will recall that the verb tocjâ can be used to convey the sense of the English to have to:

ti tocjarà di scjampâ
you shall have to flee

mi tocje di lâ
I have to go

Verset 13

The question in this verse begins with esal, seen above.

esal tant grant il gno pecjât?
is my sin so great?

The adjective grant means big, great. Review its four forms now: grant (masculine singular), grande (feminine singular), grancj (masculine plural), grandis (feminine plural). Examples:

gno fradi grant
my big brother

o ai un fradi plui grant
I have an older (bigger) brother

e à une sûr plui grande
she has an older (bigger) sister

trop grant isal?
how big is it?

The final part of the question uses two verbs: podê (can, to be able) and perdonâ (to forgive, to pardon).

podêlu perdonâ
to be able to forgive it

esal tant grant il gno pecjât
is my sin so great

di no podêlu perdonâ?
that it cannot be forgiven?

Verset 14

You will recall that ve means behold.

Cumò means now. Here are examples of cumò, taken again from the GDB:

cumò no pues fevelâ al telefon
I cannot talk on the phone right now

e cumò ce fasìno?
and now what do we do?
(that is, and what should we do now?; o fasìn, we do; ce fasìno?, what do we do?)

The second-person singular, presint indicatîf conjugation of the verb parâ is tu tu paris.

cumò tu mi paris fûr di cheste tiere
now you drive me out of this earth

The verb scugnî means to have to. You will remember the reflexive platâsi means to hide oneself.

o scugnarai platâmi lontan dai tiei vôi
I shall have to hide myself far from your eyes

You encountered un torseon (vagabond, wanderer) in verse 12; in the current verse, you find un biât torseon. The adjective biât here means sorry, poor. You will recall that o sarai (I shall be) is the first-person singular, futûr sempliç conjugation of the verb jessi: o sarai un biât torseon.

You find the expression vê di used in its masculine, third-person singular, futûr sempliç form: al varà di (he shall have to). Simpri means always. You have already encountered the verb scjampâ (to flee).

un torseon che al varà di scjampâ simpri
a vagabond who shall always have to flee
(that is, a vagabond who shall always be a fugitive)

You have seen prin before as an adjective; for example: il prin libri (the first book). In this verse, you find it used as a noun, where it takes on the sense of the first person. The verb cjatâ, you will recall, means to find.

il prin che mi cjatarà
the first (person) who shall find me

In verse 8, you saw the Friulian verb for to kill: copâ.

mi coparà
he shall kill me

Verset 15

With chest po no, an objection has been made to what was just said.

In this verse, you find another Friulian verb meaning to kill: maçâ. Its third-person singular, presint indicatîf form is al mace.

che anzit, se un al mace Cain
rather, if one kills Cain

The masculine il viaç is to be understood here as meaning time; siet viaçs, then, means seven times, sevenfold.

The first-person singular, futûr sempliç conjugation of the verb is o fasarai. The verb paiâ means to pay.

je fasarai paiâ siet viaçs
I shall make him pay for it seven times

Je in the above is a contraction of i (to him) + le (it). The reason the indirect i is used is because Friulian says to make pay something to someone. You can understand the above as translating more literally as I shall make pay it to him seven times.

The Friulian il segnâl means mark. The expression in mût che translates as so that. The Friulian verb for to find is cjatâ.

il Signôr i metè a Cain un segnâl
the Lord put a mark on Cain
(literally, the Lord put to Cain a mark)

in mût che chel che lu varès cjatât
so that he who would have found him

no lu varès copât
would not have killed him

In the above, you have examples of the condizionâl passât. The auxiliary has been used:

al varès cjatât
lu varès cjatât
he would have found
he would have found him

al varès copât
lu varès copât
he would have killed
he would have killed him

no varès copât
no lu varès copât
he would not have killed
he would not have killed him

Al varès is the masculine, third person singular, condizionâl presint conjugation of the verb vê.

al varès
he would have

Verset 16

You encounter the verb scjampâ again in this verse.

al scjampà dai vôi dal Signôr
he fled from the eyes of the Lord

You will remember that the plural of il voli (eye) is i vôi.

Al lè is the masculine, third-person singular, passât sempliç conjugation of the verb lâ. The verb stâ is to be understood here in the sense of to live, to dwell.

al lè a stâ te tiere de Not
he went to live in the land of Nod

You first encountered the expression in face di (before, in front of) in the post pertaining to Gjenesi 1:20-25, when you read in face de volte dal cîl (in the face of the firmament of heaven, before the firmament of heaven). In this verse, you read in face dal Eden.