Friulian language series: Gjenesi 26, promessis dal Signôr

You will now study chapter 26 of the book of Genesis in Friulian, where the subject matter is: lis promessis dal Signôr, Diu dal pari Abram (promises of the Lord, God of Father Abraham), Rebeche e Abimelec (Rebekah and Abimelech), furtune di Isac (Isaac’s fortune), i poçs di Gjerar (wells of Gerar), indaûr promessis (promises afresh), il pat cun Abimelec (covenant with Abimelech), lis feminis ititis di Esaù (Esau’s Hittite wives). The feminine of itit is itite; the feminine plural form, then, is ititis.

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

Read Gjenesi 26

To read the Friulian text of the Bible associated with the notes below or listen to its audio, visit Bibie par un popul and consult Gjenesi 26. An archived version of the text can be found here.

Versets 1-6

Vocabulary: capitâ (to happen), ta chê tiere (in this land), la miserie (famine), il filisteu (Philistine), comparî (to appear), mantignî (to keep, to maintain), il zurament (oath), la stele (star), il mont (world), tornâ (to repay, to give back), l’ubidience (obedience), lâ indevant (to go forward), seont che (according to what), meti in vore (to put into practice, to carry out), ordenâ (to order), un ordin (order), il comandament (commandment), la leç (law), fermâsi (to dwell, to stop oneself).

You read that a great famine occurred: e capità une grande miserie. Like sucedi, the verb capitâ means to happen, to occur.

In verse 2, God says to Isaac: no sta lâ in Egjit (do not go to Egypt); sta te tiere che jo ti mostrarai (stay in the land that I shall show you). Note that Friulian says lâ in Egjit (to go to Egypt), using the preposition in. Another example: o soi lât in Irlande (I went to Ireland).

In verse 3, God continues: o mantegnarai il zurament (I shall maintain the oath) che i ai fat a to pari Abram (that I made with your father Abraham). The verb mantignî means to maintain, to keep. The verbs tignî, mantignî and vignî follow the same conjugation model. In the text, you see that mantignî has undergone a vowel change in its stem in its futûr sempliç form (o mantegnarai); this vowel change is not mandatory, and, indeed, there are far more examples in the Friulian Bible of where no vowel change has been applied. For example, in 1 Rês 6:12, you read: jo o mantignarai la mê peraule (I shall keep my word). In Salms 89:29, you find: i mantignarai par simpri il gno boncûr (I shall always maintain my compassion for him). In Denêl 11:3, you read: podopo al vignarà fûr un re potent (then a powerful king will arise; literally, will come out). In Luche 4:11, you find: ti tignaran sù cu lis mans (they will hold you up with their hands).

Three new Friulian verb conjugation charts are included below: presint indicatîf of tignî (the presint indicatîf of vignî can be found through the Friulian verb conjugations page), and futûr sempliç of tignî and vignî. In the futûr sempliç, I have not applied a vowel change in the stem.

Presint indicatîf
Present indicative

o ten
tu tegnis
al ten

e ten

o tignìn
o tignîs
a tegnin

Futûr sempliç
Simple future

o tignarai
tu tignarâs
al tignarà

e tignarà

o tignarìn
o tignarês
a tignaran

Futûr sempliç
Simple future

o vignarai
tu vignarâs
al vignarà

e vignarà

o vignarìn
o vignarês
a vignaran

In verse 5, God says: par tornâi l’ubidience di Abram (to repay the obedience of Abraham, to reward the obedience of Abraham) che al è simpri lât indevant (who always went forward) seont che i vevi dit jo (according to what I had said to him, according to what I had told him). God continues: al à metût in vore (he carried out) ce che jo i vevi ordenât di meti in vore (that which I had ordered him to carry out).

Versets 7-11

Vocabulary: il puest (place, site), domandâ a rivuart di (to ask regarding, to ask after, to ask about), vê pôre (to be afraid), jessi bon di (to be capable of), copâ (to kill), la colpe (fault), par colpe di (because of), biel (attractive), bielzà (already), un grum di (a lot of), il timp (time), il re (king), cjalâ fûr (to look out), il balcon (window; also expressed as barcon), cjareçâ (to caress), mandâ a clamâ (to call for), scometi (to bet), il riscjo (risk), lâ a riscjo di (to be at risk of, to run the risk of), murî (to die), fâ une part dal gjenar (to do a deed of the sort), il gjenar (sort, kind), mancjâ pôc che (to almost happen that, to almost come to pass that; literally, to lack little that), cualchidun (someone, somebody), lâ a durmî cun (to go to sleep with; that is, to have sexual intercourse with), la schene (back; that is, the back of the human body), meti su pe schene (to bring upon, to cause to bear), il pecjât (sin), tocjâ (to touch).

In verse 7, you read: la int dal puest (the people of the place; that is, the local people) i domandarin a rivuart de sô femine (asked him about his wife, asked after his wife). You read why Isaac said that Rebekah was his sister: al veve pôre di dî (he was afraid to say): e je la mê femine (she is my wife). You have seen before that vê pôre means to be afraid; here, you find it used as part of the expression vê pôre di, followed by an infinitive. For example, vê pôre di dî means to be afraid to say; vê pôre di fâlu means to be afraid to do it. Isaac says that he risks getting killed: cheste int culì e je buine di copâmi (these people are capable of killing me, these people could very well kill me).

In verse 8, you read that Abimelech had understood that Rebekah was not Isaac’s sister: al viodè Isac che al cjareçave Rebeche (he saw Isaac who was caressing Rebekah). Abimelech, in verse 9, says to Isaac: o scomet ch’e je la tô femine (I bet that she is your wife). Here are more examples using the verb scometi (to bet, to place a bet) to learn from: scometìn une bire (let us bet a beer), scometi suntun cjaval (to bet on a horse), al à il vizi di scometi (he has the bad habit of placing bets; il vizi, vice), o scomet che tu pierdarâs il tren ancje doman (I bet that you will miss the train tomorrow also). The verb scometi follows the conjugation model of meti.

Still in verse 9, Isaac tells Abimelech why he said Rebekah was his sister: o ai pensât (I thought): o voi a riscjo di murî par colpe di jê (I run the risk of dying because of her; that is, I run the risk of getting killed because of her). Then, in verse 10, Abimelech asks: parcè mi âstu fate une part dal gjenar? (why did you do a deed of the sort to me?). He continues: al è mancjât pôc che (it almost happened that) cualchidun al les a durmî cu la tô femine (someone could have gone to sleep with your wife) e tu nus varessis metût su pe schene un grant pecjât (and you would have brought upon us a great sin; literally, and you would have put on our backs a great sin). Note the use of the subjunctive following al è mancjât pôc che (literally, it lacked little that); in this case, because it is question of past time, you find the coniuntîf imperfet form al les, from the verb lâ.

Here are more examples of the verb mancjâ (to be lacking, to be missing): nus mancje il timp (we do not have time; literally, the time is lacking unto us), e mancje une ore ae partence (the departure is one hour away, the departure is in one hour; literally, one hour is lacking unto the departure; ae is a variant contraction of a la), a mancjin trê chilometris (there are three kilometres left [to go]; literally, three kilometres are lacking).

Versets 12-17

Vocabulary: semenâ (to sow), butâ il cent par un (to produce a hundredfold), il siôr (sir, gentleman), deventâ siôr (to become rich), slargjâsi (to become rich; literally, to extend oneself, to broaden oneself), simpri di plui (more and more), deventâ un sioron (to become very rich), la mandrie (herd), il besteam minût (small livestock; that is, sheep, flocks), il besteam grant (large livestock; that is, cattle, herds), un slac di (a lot of), la rabie (anger, resentment), vê rabie (to be angry, to be resentful), il poç (well), sgjavâ (to dig), ancjemò vîf (still alive), stropâ (to plug, to close, to block), jemplâ di tiere (to fill with earth), vatint (leave, go off; second-person singular imperative of lâsint), masse grant (too great), partî di li (to leave from there), campâsi (to set up camp, to camp out), ad ôr di (next to), il riul (stream), sistemâsi (to settle, to set oneself up) aventi (there).

The Friulian il siôr literally means sir, gentleman, mister. Examples: un siôr ti cîr (a gentleman is looking for you; cirî, to look for), siôr Pauli, cemût vadie? (mister Paul, how are you?; literally, mister Paul, how goes it?; siôr is used in this example with the man’s given name, which has the combined effect of injecting respect whilst maintaining an affectionate, personalised feel). By extension, siôr can be used in the sense of rich man, wealthy man. In verse 13, you read of Isaac: al deventà siôr (he became a wealthy man, he became rich). Then, a little farther along, you read: al deventà un sioron (he became a very wealthy man, he became very rich). Sioron is the augmentative form of siôr. A few more examples of these usages: al fâs une vite di siôr (he leads the life of a lord; that is, a comfortable life with material wealth), i siôrs e i puars (the rich and the poor), chel sioron dal sigûr nol à fastidis a comprâ dut ce che al vûl (that very wealthy man has certainly no trouble buying everything he wants; dal sigûr, certainly; il fastidi, inconvenience, bother, problem).

You find, still in verse 13, the reflexive verb slargjâsi. This can be understood here as meaning to get rich, to become wealthy. This is not the first time that you are encountering this usage; you will perhaps recall it from Gjenesi 14:23, when you read: Abram si è slargjât in gracie di me (Abram became rich thanks to me). In the current verse, you read: si slargjà simpri di plui (he became increasingly rich) fin che al deventà un sioron (until he became a very wealthy man indeed).

You have seen a number of Friulian expressions now equating to the English a lot of: une vore di, un grum di, un grumon di, un slac di. In verse 14, you find un slac di fameis, meaning a lot of servants. Other examples that you have seen in past chapters include: un grum di robe (a lot of stock, possessions), un grumon di popui (a lot of peoples, nations), une vore di tendis (a lot of tents).

In verse 14, you read the following about the Philistines: i filisteus a vevin rabie (the Philistines were resentful, the Philistines were angry). The expression here is vê rabie, which, depending on the context, can mean to be angry, to be resentful. The Friulian for anger is la rabie; the adjective angry can be expressed as inrabiât. Example: no varès mai pensât di viodilu cussì inrabiât par une robe di nuie (you would have never thought to see him so angry for so little; une robe di nuie, literally, a thing of nothing).

The verb stropâ means to plug, to close, to block. Examples: stropâ une buse (to plug a hole), i muredôrs a àn stropât un barcon (the bricklayers closed off a window). You will remember that the verb sgjavâ means to dig; for example, sgjavâ une buse (to dig a hole).

Versets 18-22

Vocabulary: tornâ a sgjavâ (to dig again, to dig back out), dopo muart Abram (after Abraham had died), clamâ (to call), stes (same), cul stes non (by the same name), la valade (valley), cjatâ (to find), la risultive (spring, fountain), aghe vive (springing water), il pastôr (shepherd, herder), la barufe (argument, disagreement), plantâ une barufe (to start an argument), cavilâ (to argue; cavilâ su, to argue about), nassi (to be born; used here in the sense of to arise), la libertât (freedom, liberty), fâ furtune (to become rich, to be fruitful; also expressed as fâ fortune).

Une barufe is an argument. Here are supplementary examples of how you might use this noun, as well as the related verb barufâ (to argue): al è un che al tache barufe facil (he gets into arguments easily; literally, he is one who starts arguments easily), jessi in barufe (to be in an argument), no si son capîts e a àn barufât par une stupidade (they misunderstood each other and they argued over something stupid; literally, they did not understand each other and they argued for a stupidity), a àn barufât dute la gnot (they argued all nght), a barufin par ogni robe (they argue over everything).

Esec (Esek) comes from the Hebrew for strife, contention. In verse 20, you read that Isaac gave this name to the well for the following reason: parcè che a vevin cavilât cun lui (because they had argued with him). Sitne (Sitnah), on the other hand, comes from the Hebrew for enmity. As for Recobot (Rehoboth), it comes from the Hebrew for wide spaces.

Versets 23-34

Vocabulary: lâ sù a (to go up to), vie pe gnot (during the night), in gracie di (thanks to, because of, on account of), il servidôr (servant), fâ un altâr (to make an altar), preâ (to pray), plantâ une tende (to pitch a tent), dutun cun (along with), jessi di cjase (to be of the house), il sorestant (chief), il soldât (soldier), dal moment che (given that, seeing as), vê in asse (to hate), parâ fûr (to drive out, to send away), palpâ (to verify, to know), jessi de bande di (to be with, to be on the side of), fâ un zurament (to take an oath), rivâ a un cumbinament (to reach an agreement), fâ mâl (to hurt, to do harm), tratâ ben (to treat well), la pâs (peace), lassâ in pâs (to leave alone, to leave undisturbed, to not bother), preparâ (to prepare), il gustâ (luncheon, lunch), bevi (to drink), jevât prin dal dì (having got up early), un par chel altri (to one another), saludâ (to take leave of), lâsint in pâs (to leave in peace), par cumbinazion (by chance), propit ta chê dì (on that very day), la gnove ([piece of] news), puartâ la gnove di (to bring news of).

In verse 27, Isaac asks: parcè vignîso culì (why do you come here) dal moment che mi vês in asse (given that you hate me) e che mi vês parât fûr de vuestre tiere (and that you have driven me out of your land)? The second-person plural of the presint indicatîf of the verb vignî is o vignîs; vignîso, then, is its interrogative form. O vês is the second-person plural of the presint indicatîf of the verb vê: mi vês in asse (you hate me; literally, you have me in hate); as an auxiliary: mi vês parât fûr (you have driven me out).

O vin is the first-person plural of the presint indicatîf of the verb vê. You find it used several times as an auxiliary in these verses: o vin dit (we have said), no ti vin mai fat nuie (we have never done anything [bad] to you), ti vin tratât dome ben (we have only [ever] treated you well), etc.

Asse is a feminine noun meaning hate. Here are more examples of it: al veve la cjalade plene di asse (he had a look full of hate), vê in asse lis vueris (to hate wars), pes codis in autostrade o ai une asse che no ti dîs (you have no idea how much that I hate traffic jams; more literally, for highway queues I have a hate that I shall not [do not] tell you; la code, queue, line-up; la autostrade, highway).

In verse 31, you will recall the meaning of lâsint, as it is found in this verse: lôr s’int lerin di lui in pâs (they left him in peace, they went away from him in peace). In verse 32, you find the expression puartâ la gnove di, meaning to bring (the) news of. The singular la gnove means (piece of) news; it is also often used in the plural, as in this example: âstu voie di sintî lis ultimis gnovis? (do you want to hear the latest news?).

Names: Acuzat (Ahuzzath), Picol (Phichol), Gjudit (Judith), Beeri (Beeri), Basemat (Bashemath), Elon (Elon); Bersabee (Beersheba), Sabee (Shebah). Sabee is from the Hebrew for oath; Bersabee is from the Hebrew for well of the oath.

Verset 35

The final verse of this chapter does not appear alongside the rest of the text for Gjenesi 26; instead, it appears at the beginning of the page for Gjenesi 27 and is pronounced in the video associated with that same chapter. In full, verse 35 reads: Ma par colpe lôr a nasserin dome tichignis cun Isac e Rebeche. If you wish to open the Gjenesi 27 page on the Bibie par un popul site to view this final verse, follow the link here to access the website.

Broken down, this verse can be understood as follows: ma par colpe lôr (but because of them; literally, but by fault of theirs; that is, of Esau’s two wives) a nasserin dome tichignis cun Isac e Rebeche (only quarrels arose with Isaac and Rebekah). The only new usage here is la tichigne, meaning quarrel.