Friulian language series: Gjenesi 50, tombis di Jacop

In your study of the Friulian language, you have come to the fiftieth and final chapter of the book of Genesis. Tombis di Jacop means burial of Jacob.

Throughout your reading of this book, you have scaffolded the Friulian language in your mind and laid the necessary groundwork for an eventual complete acquisition of the language. From this point forward, your main tasks will be increasing your range of vocabulary, mastering the grammar points encountered, and understanding the spoken language in its numerous variants. To slacken your focus at this point would be unwise, for you are still very much on your journey to fluency in the language. I encourage you to sustain your effort and see your study of Friulian through to the very end.

I would also recommend that you reread the entire book of Genesis upon completion of your study of Gjenesi 50. You will find that a second reading does not present the same level of difficulty as it did the first time round; this will allow you to focus less strenuously on the basics of Friulian and free up your focus for a deeper understanding and appreciation of the text.

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

Read Gjenesi 50

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 50. An archived version of the text can be found here.

Versets 1-5

Vocabulary: parsore di (on top of), cuviergi (to cover; also cuvierzi), la lagrime (tear), la bussade (kiss), ordenâ (to order, to command), il miedi (physician, medical doctor), servî (to serve), imbalsamâ (to embalm), la vore (work), durâ (to last), coventâ (to be necessary), il corot (mourning), fâ corot (to mourn), spirâ (to expire, to come to an end), il palaç (palace), se propit (if really, if truly), volê ben (to love), fâ il plasê di (to do the favour of), la peraule (word), fâ un zurament (to take an oath), stâ par murî (to be about to die), il tombâl (grave), sgjavâ (to dig), soterâ (to bury), tornâ indaûr (to come back).

With the aid of the vocabulary listed above, you should be able to work your way through these first five verses with little trouble. Note that il miedi, found in verse 2, is also the contemporary way to refer to a medical doctor. Examples: une visite dal miedi (a check-up from the doctor), un miedi ambulatoriâl (paramedic), fâ il miedi (to work as a physician).

Versets 6-14

Vocabulary: zurâ (to swear), un uficiâl (official), il grant (elder), adun cun (along with), movisi (to move about), il cjar (chariot), il cjavalîr (horseman; see note below), la schirie (formation, procession), une arie (designates a large, open area), ven a stâi (that is to say), di là di (beyond, on the other side of), il lament (lamentation), fâ un lament (to lament, to make a lamentation), ricuardâsi (to remember), compagn (identical), il lûc (site), il landri (cave), il cjamp (field), comprâ (to buy), un itit (Hittite), il tombâl di famee (family grave), in face di (in front of, before). Name: Abêl-Misraim (Abelmizraim).

A jerin une schirie di int mai viodude, from verse 9, is to be understood as they formed a procession of people never (before) seen.

The use of cjavalîr (horseman) is anachronistic given that the Egyptians of the time had no cavalry. Although the Friulian cjavalîr translates as horseman, it should be probably be understood in this context as referring to a chariot rider.

Take note of di là di (beyond, on the other side), found in verse 10, where di là dal Gjordan means on the other side of Jordan, beyond Jordan. Another example: di là dal flum (on the other side of the river, beyond the river).

Also in verse 10, you read: a faserin un lament che no si ricuardavisi un compagn (they made a lamentation the likes of which could not be remembered [that one was not remembering an identical one]); that is, the lamentation was so great that an identical one had never before been experienced. You have seen that si can be used to express what English does with the impersonal subject one; for example, si viodeve che can be understood as one saw that, one could see that. In verse 10, however, you have a reflexive verb: ricuardâsi. This means that there will be two si present: the one that denotes the impersonal use, and the other belonging to the reflexive verb. In the text, take note of how they are positioned: no si ricuardavisi. The final e of ricuardave changes to i when si is added.

no si ricuardavisi
one was not remembering
one did not use to remember
one could not remember

Another example of this that you have already encountered:

no si inacuargevisi che
one was not noticing that
one did not use to notice that
one could not notice that

Versets 15-21

Vocabulary: muart (dead), metisi cuintri di (to turn against), tornâ il mâl (to return the evil), mandâ a dî (to send word), prin di murî (before dying), fâ une racomandazion (to make an admonition), perdonâ (to forgive, to pardon), il delit (offence, crime), il pecjât (sin), metisi a vaî (to start to cry), sintî (to hear), presentâsi di persone (to present oneself in person), il sclâf (slave), vê pôre (to be afraid), forsit (perhaps), cjapâ il puest di (to take the place of), distinâ di fâ (to determine to do; also destinâ), savê (to know), voltâ (to transform, to turn), voltâ in ben (to turn into good), salvâ la vite (to save one’s life), pensâ par (to take care of), consolâ (to console), il cûr (heart), spalancâ (to open wide), fevelâ a cûr spalancât (to speak with an open heart).

Note the use of the coniuntîf imperfet in verse 15: e se Josef si metès cuintri di nô e nus tornàs dut il mâl che i vin fat (what if Joseph should turn against us and return to us all the evil that we have done to him)? E se and the beginning of this sentence is to be understood as meaning what if.

In verse 17, you read: perdoniur ai tiei fradis il lôr delit e il lôr pecjât, dut il mâl che ti àn fat (forgive your brothers for their offence and for their sin, for all the evil that they have done to you). Note that the people being forgiven become an indirect object (perdoniur ai tiei fradis; forgive [to] your brothers), whereas that which is forgiven is a direct object (i lôr delit, il lôr pecjât, dut il mâl).

You find a number of present participles in this grouping of verses: viodint (seeing), sintintju (hearing them), butantsi (throwing themselves).

Voltâ, from verse 20, is an important verb to learn. A few supplementary examples of it: voltâ la pagjine (to turn the page), voltâ il cjâf a man drete (to turn one’s head to the right), voltâ la machine a man çampe (to turn the car to the left), voltâ dal cinês (to translate from Chinese), voltâ dal polac par furlan (to translate from Polish to Friulian).

Versets 22-26

Vocabulary: fintremai a (as far as), tierç (third), la gjenerazion (generation), nassi (to be born), il genoli (knee; also zenoli), viodi di (to check up on, to visit), imprometi (to promise), cun zurament (by oath), puartâ vie (to take away), il vues (bone), il sepulchri (sepulchre, sarcophagus). Name: Machir (Machir).

You should be able to work through these final verses of the chapter with nothing more than the aid of the vocabulary listed above.


This completes your study of the book of Genesis in Friulian. Continue now with the book of Exodus, the links to which you will find in the index.