Friulian language series: Gjenesi 37, Josef e i siei siums

From the headings of the thirty-seventh chapter of the book of Genesis: la storie di Josef (the story of Joseph); Josef e i siei siums (Joseph and his dreams).

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Versets 1-4

Vocabulary: stabilîsi (to settle), la tiere (land), il pari (father), la storie (story, history), la gjernazie (offspring), disesiet (seventeen), un an (year), passonâ (to pasture), la robe minude (small livestock, sheep, flock), il fradi (brother), dutun cun (along with), ancjemò (yet, still), il zovenut (lad), il fi (son), vivi (to live), la femine (wife), contâ (to tell, to relate), il mâl (wrong, bad, harm), ator di (about, round), volê ben (to love), altri (other), in là (beyond), la tonie (tunic), la manie (sleeve), lunc (long), viodi (to see), cjapâ in asse (to take to hating), jessi bon di (to be capable of), il rusin (rust).

Verse 1: Jacop si stabilì te tiere che al veve stât so pari (Jacob settled in the land where his father had dwelt), te tiere di Canaan (in the land of Canaan).

Verse 2: Cheste e je la storie de gjernazie di Jacop: this is the story of Jacob’s lineage; this is the history of Jacob’s line. Josef al veve disesiet agns: Joseph was seventeen years old (was having seventeen years). Al passonave la robe minude dutun cui siei fradis: he pastured (was pasturing) the flocks along with his brothers. Al jere ancjemò zovenut (he was yet a lad) e al viveve cui fîs di Bile e cui fis di Zilpe (living with [and was living with] the sons of Bilhah and with the sons of Zilpah), feminis di so pari (his father’s wives), e Josef i contà a so pari (and Joseph related to his father) dut il mâl che a disevin ator di lôr (all the wicked words that were spoken about them [that they were saying about them]).

Verse 3: Jacop i voleve plui ben a Josef (Jacob loved [was loving] Joseph more) che no a ducj chei altris fîs (than all his other sons), parcè che lu veve vût (for he had begotten him) cuant che al jere in là cui agns (when he was advanced in years), e i veve fate une tonie cu lis maniis lungjis (and he made a tunic for him with long sleeves). The preposition a is used with volê ben; for instance, ti vuei ben means I love you; i vuei ben means I love him; and i vuei ben a Josef means I love Joseph. Using the imperfet indicatîf: ti volevi ben (I loved [was loving] you; I used to love you); i volevi ben (I loved [was loving] him; I used to love him); i volevi ben a Josef (I loved [was loving] Joseph; I used to love Joseph). The imperfect indicative of volê is presented below.

Verb: VOLÊ
Imperfet indicatîf
Imperfect indicative

o volevi
tu volevis
al voleve

e voleve

o volevin
o volevis
a volevin

Verse 4: Cuant che i siei fradis a vioderin (when his brothers saw) che so pari i voleve plui ben a lui (that his father loved [was loving] him more) che no a ducj chei altris fîs (than all his other sons), lu cjaparin in asse (they took to hating him) e no jerin bogns di fevelâi cence rusin (and were unable to speak to him without rancour [without rust]). The masculine rusin (rust) is used here in the figurative sense of rancour, vitriol.

Versets 5-11

Vocabulary: fâ un sium (to have a dream), contâ (to tell, to relate), il fradi (brother), cjapâ in asse (to take to hating), ancjemò plui (yet more, more still), sintî (to hear), parê (to appear), il cjamp (field), leâ (to tie, to bind), il balçûl (sheaf, bundle), dreçâsi (to stand upright), sù impilât (stacked up, heaped up), torator di (round about), pleâsi (to bow down, to bend over), fin par tiere (down to the ground), devant di, denant di (before, in front of), rispuindi (to respond), sicheduncje (therefore, so), volê dî (to mean to say), regnâ parsore di (to rule over), o ben (or), il paron (master), odeâ (to hate), par vie di (on account of), indaûr (again), un altri (another), tornâ a fâ (to do again, to make again), il soreli (sun), la lune (moon), undis (eleven), la stele (star), il pari (father), cridâ (to reprimand, to scold), biel (nice, fine), sichè (therefore, so), la mari (mother), vignî (to come), butâsi in genoglon (to go down on one’s knees; also zenoglon), la gjelosie (jealousy, envy; also zelosie), rumiâ (to ruminate), la robe (thing, matter), dentrivie (within oneself; also dentri vie).

Verse 5: Josef al fasè un sium (Joseph had a dream) e ur al contà ai siei fradis (and related it to his brothers), che lu cjaparin ancjemò plui in asse (who took to hating him yet more). Ur alur + lu (unto them + it). Review the contractions produced when the indirect object pronouns in purple come into contact with the direct object pronouns in blue:

lu le ju lis
mi mal me mai mes
ti tal te tai tes
i jal je jai jes
si sal se sai ses
nus nus al nus e nus ai nus es
us us al us e us ai us es
ur ur al ur e ur ai ur es

Verses 6-7: Joseph says to his brothers: sintît ce sium che o ai fat (hear this dream [what dream] that I have had): mi pareve che (I dreamt that [it was appearing to me that]) nô o jerin tal cjamp (we were in the field) a leâ balçûi (binding sheaves) e ve che il gno balçûl si dreçà (and, behold, my sheaf stood upright) e al stave sù impilât (and remained stacked up) e i vuestris balçûi a jerin torator di lui (and your sheaves stood round about [were round about it]) e si pleavin fin par tiere devant dal gno balçûl (and were bowing down to the ground before my sheaf).

Verse 8: His brothers say: sicheduncje tu volaressis dî (do you therefore mean to say [would you therefore mean to say]) che tu regnarâs parsore di nô (that you will rule over us) o ben che tu sarâs il nestri paron? (or that you will be our master?), e lu odearin ancjemò di plui (and they hated him yet more) par vie dai siei siums (on account of his dreams) e di ce che al veve contât (and that which he had related). In other contexts, volê dî (to mean to say) can also be used in the sense of to signify; for instance, ce vuelie dî cheste peraule? is the Friulian for what does this word mean?, what does this word signify?, where vuelie is the interrogative form of e vûl. (By using ce che instead, the interrogative can be avoided: ce che e vûl dî cheste peraule?). In the text of this verse, you find tu volaressis dî. Tu volaressis is the second-person singular of the condizionâl presint of volê; tu volaressis dî is to be understood as meaning you would mean to say. The present conditional of volê is presented below:

Verb: VOLÊ
Condizionâl presint
Present conditional

o volarès
tu volaressis
al volarès

e volarès

o volaressin
o volaressis
a volaressin

Verse 9: Al fasè indaûr un altri sium (he had yet another dream) e ur al contà ai siei fradis (and related it to his brothers): o ai tornât a fâ un sium (I have had another dream): mi pareve che (I dreamt that [it was appearing to me that]) il soreli, la lune e undis stelis (the sun, the moon and eleven stars) si pleassin fin par tiere devant di me (were bowing down to the ground before me). Si pleassin: third-person plural of the coniuntîf imperfet.

Verse 10: I contà il sium a so pari e ai siei fradis (he recounted the dream to his father and brothers), ma so pari i cridà e i disè (but his father reprimanded him and said): biei siums che tu fasis (what fine dreams you have). Sichè jo, tô mari e i tiei fradis (so I, your mother and your brothers) o varessin di vignî a butâsi in genoglon denant di te? ({we} ought to come before you and go down on our knees?).

Verse 11: I siei fradis a vevin gjelosie di lui (his brothers envied him [were having jealousy of him]), ma so pari al rumiave la robe dentrivie (but his father revolved the matter in his mind [was ruminating on the matter within himself]).

Versets 12-22

Vocabulary: il fradi (brother), lâ a passonâ (to go out to pasture), la robe minude (small livestock, sheep, flock), il pari (father), il passon (pasture), passâ chi (to come here), mandâ (to send), rispuindi (to respond), pront (ready), va mo (go then, off you go), viodi (to see), cemût (how), il besteam (livestock), tornâ (to return, to come/go back), savê a dî (to bring word, to let know), alc (something), la valade (valley), rivâ (to arrive, to come), un om (man), incuintrâ (to meet, to come across), lâ ca e là (to wander), la campagne (open, country), domandâ (to ask), cirî (to look for, to seek), par plasê (please), là che (where), gjavâ (to remove, to take out/away), la tende (tent), sintî (to hear), anìn (let us go), partî (to leave, to depart), cjatâ (to find), di lontan (from afar), prime che (before, prior to), rivâ dongje (to come near), complotâ (to plot, to conspire), fâ murî (to kill), dîsi un cul altri (to say to one another), velu ([t]here he is), il sium (dream), dai, anìn (come on then, off we go), copâ (to kill), butâ (to throw, to cast), cualchi (some, any), il poç (well), fâ fûr (to kill), la bestie (beast), salvadi (wild), zovâ (to be of benefit), volê (to want), salvâ (to save), la sgrife (claw, clutch), spandi (to spill, to shed), il sanc (blood), il desert (desert), meti (to put, to place), la man (hand), intor (round, about), cussì (thus, so), tornâ a puartâ (to bring back, to restore).

Verse 12: I siei fradis a lerin a passonâ la robe minude di lôr pari a Sichem: his brothers went to pasture their father’s flock at Shechem.

Verse 13: Israel says to Joseph: i tiei fradis no sono lâts a passon a Sichem? (have your brothers not gone to pasture at Shechem?); passe chi, che ti mandi di lôr (come here, and I will send you to them [I send you to them]). Joseph says: o soi pront (I am ready). No sono lâts?: because the auxiliary used is jessi, the past participle is made to agree in number and gender (here, masculine plural) with its subject. Study the following: a son lâts; sono lâts? (they have gone; have they gone?); no son lâts; no sono lâts? (they have not gone; have they not gone?).

Verse 14: Israel: va mo viôt cemût che a stan i tiei fradis e il besteam (go then to see how your brothers and the livestock are), e torne a savêmi a dî alc (and come back and bring me word). Lu mandà te* valade di Ebron e Josef al rivà a Sichem: he sent him into the valley of Hebron, and Joseph came to Shechem. *It seems to me that this should instead read fûr de, as in lu mandà fûr de valade di Ebron (he sent him out of the valley of Hebron).

Verse 15: Un om lu incuintrà che al leve ca e là pe campagne (a man came across him wandering in the open) e i domandà (and asked him): ce ciristu? (what are you looking for?). In un om lu incuintrà che al leve ca e là, both lu and che refer back to Joseph; it was Joseph whom the man had come across, and it was Joseph who was wandering.

Verse 16: Joseph says: o cîr i miei fradis (I am looking for my brothers); disimi, par plasê, là che a son lâts a passon (tell me, please, where they have gone to pasture). The present indicative of cirî is presented below.

Verb: CIRÎ
Presint indicatîf
Present indicative

o cîr
tu ciris
al cîr

e cîr

o cirìn
o cirîs
a cirin

Verse 17: The man says: e àn gjavadis lis tendis di chi (they withdrew their tents from here) e ju ai sintûts che a disevin (and I heard them saying): anìn a Dotan (let us go to Dothan). Josef al partì a cirî i siei fradis e ju cjatà a Dotan: Joseph went to look for his brothers and found them at Dothan. E àn gjavadis lis tendis: in standardised Friulian, this is expressed as a àn gjavadis lis tendis. Ju ai sintûts che a disevin: the past participle has been made to agree in gender and number with the direct object preceding it, which is the masculine plural ju; the structure of this sentence, in its use of che, is similar to the one found in verse 15: un om lu incuintrà che al leve ca e là.

Verse 18: Lu vioderin di lontan e, prime che al rivàs dongje (they saw him from afar, and before he came near), a complotarin di fâlu murî (they conspired to kill him).

Verse 19: Si diserin un cul altri (they said to one another): velu che al rive chel dai siums (here comes the one with the dreams [the one of the dreams]).

Verse 20: Dai, anin (come on then), copìnlu e butìnlu in cualchi poç (let us kill him and cast him into a well). O disarìn che lu à fat fûr une bestie salvadie: we will say that a wild beast has killed him. Viodìn ce che i zovaran i siei siums: let us see of what benefit to him are his dreams.

Verse 21: Ma Ruben ju sintì (but Reuben heard them) e al voleve salvâlu des lôr sgrifis (and tried [was trying (wanting)] to save him from their clutches). Dissal (he said): no stin a copâlu (let us not kill him).

Verse 22: Reuben continues: no stait a spandi il so sanc (do not shed his blood). Butaitlu in tun poç dal desert ma no stait a metii lis mans intor: cast him into a well in the desert (of the desert), but do not lay your hands upon him (do not put your hands about him). Al diseve cussì par salvâlu des lôr sgrifis (thus said he [thus was he saying], that he might save him from their clutches) e tornâlu a puartâ a so pari (and restore him to his father). Observe the following: meti lis mans intor (to lay one’s hands upon); metii lis mans intor (to lay one’s hands upon him).

Versets 23-27

Vocabulary: rivâ (to arrive, to come), là che (where), il fradi (brother), gjavâ (to remove), la tonie (tunic), vê intor (to have about one, to be wearing), la manie (sleeve), lunc (long), brincâ (to seize, to take hold of), butâ (to cast, to throw), il poç (well), vueit (empty), cence (without), la aghe (water), sentâsi (to sit down), mangjâ un spêl (to eat a little, to have something to eat), alçâ (to lift, to raise), il voli (eye), viodi (to see), la carovane (caravan), un ismaelit (Ishmaelite), il camêl (camel), cjamâ (to load), la gome adragant (tragacanth gum), il balsim (balsam), il laudìn (laudanum), puartâ (to bring, to take), vendi (to sell), (to say), tornâ cont (to be worthwhile), copâ (to kill), cuviergi (to cover {up}; also cuvierzi), cussì (thus, so), il sanc (blood), meti (to put, to place), la man (hand), parmìs (about, near), simpri (after all, nevertheless), stes (same), la cjar (flesh), scoltâ (to listen, to heed).

Verse 23: Cuant che Josef al rivà là che a jerin i siei fradis (when Joseph came to where his brothers were), lôr i gjavarin la tonie (they stripped him of his tunic), chê tonie cu lis maniis lungjis che al veve intor (the long-sleeved tunic that he was wearing [that tunic with the long sleeves that he was having about him]).

Verse 24: Lu brincarin (they took hold of him) e lu butarin intun poç (and cast him into the well); al jere un poç vueit, cence aghe (it was an empty well, without water).

Verse 25: Po si sentarin a mangjâ un spel: then they sat down to have something to eat. Alçant i vôi (lifting their eyes), a vioderin une carovane di ismaelits (they saw a caravan of Ishmaelites) che a rivavin di Galaad (coming from Gilead [that was coming (arriving) from Gilead]). I lôr camêi a jerin cjamâts di gome adragant, di balsim e di laudìn (their camels were loaded with tragacanth gum, balsam and laudanum) che a puartavin a vendi in Egjit (which they were taking to Egypt to be sold [which they were taking to sell in Egypt]).

Verse 26: Dissal alore Gjude ai siei fradis (Judah then said to his brothers): nus tornial cont (is it worthwhile to us) a copâ nestri fradi (to kill our brother) e a cuviergi il so sanc? (and to cover up his blood?).

Verse 27: Fasìn cussì (let us proceed so [let us do so]): vendìnlu ai ismaelits (let us sell him to the Ishmaelites) ma no stin a metii lis mans parmìs (but let us not lay our hands upon him [about him]); al è simpri nestri fradi (he is after all our brother), de nestre stesse cjar (of our same flesh). E i siei fradis lu scoltarin: and his brothers heeded him.

Versets 28-36

Vocabulary: in chel (in the meantime), passâ (to pass {by}), un om (man), il marcjedant (merchant), tirâ fûr (to pull out), il poç (well), vincj (twenty), il siclo (shekel), d’arint (of silver), vendi (to sell), un ismaelit (Ishmaelite), menâ (to take, to bring), tornâ (to return, to go/come back), no… altri (no more), sbregâ (to tear, to rend), i vistîts (clothing, clothes), il fradi (brother), il frut (boy, lad), no… plui (no more), là dentri (inside, within), cumò (now), cjoli (to take), la tonie (tunic), taiâ (to cut), il sgrasalâr (throat, gullet), il bec (he-goat), meti in muel (to soak), il sanc (blood), mandâ (to send), il pari (father), la manie (sleeve), lunc (long), mandâ a dî (to send word), la peraule (word), cjalâ (to look), cjatâ (to find), viodi (to see), se par câs (if by chance), il fi (son), fâ fûr (to kill), la bestie (beast), salvadi (wild), propit (without doubt, assuredly), slambrâ (to rip apart, to rend to pieces), il sac (sack), tor di (round about), i ombui (loins), puartâ corot (to observe mourning), une vorone (very much, a great deal), a lunc (at length), la fie (daughter), vignî (to come), la fuarce (force, strength), no volê savênt di (to want no part of, to refuse), il confuart (comfort), lâ cul corot (to go in mourning), altri (other), il mont (world), dongje di (alongside), vaî (to weep, to bewail), intant (in the meantime), il madianit (Midianite), vendi (to send), il cjastrât (eunuch), il faraon (pharaoh), il sorestant (chief), la vuaite (guard).

Verse 28: In chel a passarin oms di Madian, marcjedants (in the meantime, men from Midian passed by; they were merchants). A tirarin fûr Josef dal poç (they pulled Joseph out of the well) e par vincj siclos d’arint (and for twenty shekels of silver) a venderin Josef ai ismaelits (sold Joseph to the Ishmaelites), che lu menarin in Egjit (who took him to Egypt).

Verses 29-30: Cuant che Ruben al tornà li dal poç (when Reuben went back to the well), Josef nol jere altri (Joseph was there no more). Alore al sbregà i siei vistîts (so he rent his clothes) e tornant dai fradis (and returning to his brothers) ur disè (said to them): il frut nol è plui là dentri (the lad is not there anymore [the lad is within {the well} no more]). Ce fasio jo cumò?: what am I to do now (what do I do now)?

Verse 31: Alore a cjolerin la tonie di Josef (they then took Joseph’s tunic), i taiarin il sgrasalâr a di un bec (cut the throat of a he-goat) e a meterin la tonie in muel tal sanc (and soaked the tunic in its blood).

Verse 32: Po i mandarin a lôr pari la tonie cu lis maniis lungjis (then they had the long-sleeved tunic brought to their father [then they sent to their father the tunic with the long sleeves]) e i mandarin a dî chestis peraulis (and sent word to him [sent to say these words to him]): cjale ce che o vin cjatât (look what we have found); viôt se par câs no fos la tonie di to fi (see whether or not it is your son’s tunic [see if by chance it were not your son’s tunic]).

Verse 33: Jacob examines the tunic and says: e je la tonie di gno fi (it is my son’s tunic); lu à fat fûr une bestie salvadie (a wild beast has killed him). Josef al è stât propit slambrât: Joseph has been doubtless rent to pieces.

Verse 34: Jacop al sbregà i siei vistîts (Jacob rent his clothes), al metè un sac tor dai ombui (put a sackcloth [sack] round his loins) e al puartà corot par so fi (and observed mourning for his son) une vorone a lunc (a long time indeed [very much at length]).

Verse 35: Ducj i siei fîs e lis sôs fiis a vignirin a dâi fuarce (all his sons and daughters came to console him [give force to him]), ma lui nol voleve savênt di nissun confuart (but he refused to be comforted [but he refused (was not wanting) to know of any comfort]) e al diseve (and said [was saying]): no, o vuei lâ cul corot (no, I will go [want to go] in mourning) in chel altri mont (to the other world) dongje di gno fi (alongside my son). E so pari lu vaì: and his father bewailed him.

Verse 36: Intant (in the meantime) i madianits lu vevin vendût in Egjit a Putifar (the Midianites had sold him in Egypt to Potiphar), un cjastrât dal faraon (a eunuch of Pharaoh) e sorestant des vuaitis (and chief of the guards).