Friulian language series: Esodo 8, lis plais dal Egjit

In Esodo 8, or the eighth chapter of the book of Exodus, you continue to read about lis plais dal Egjit (the plagues of Egypt). Not only do you read more about the second plague, which began in the last chapter and deals with i crots (frogs), but you now also read about the third and fourth plagues, which are lis zanzaris (mosquitoes) and i tavans (horseflies).

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

Read Esodo 8

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 Esodo 8. An archived version of the text can be found here.

Versets 1-5

Vocabulary: slungjâ la man (to extend one’s hand), il flum (river), il baston (rod, staff), il canâl (canal), il palût (swamp, marsh), fâ vignî sù (to make come up), il crot (frog), taponâ (to cover), il strolic (magician), il striament (enchantment, wizardry), fâ precîs edentic (to do exactly the same), preâ (to pray), deliberâ di (to deliver from; also diliberâ), dâ la sô peraule (to give one’s word), lassâ che (to allow that), fâ un sacrifici (to make a sacrifice), il vantaç (advantage), lâ ben (to suit, to be convenient), sparî (to disappear).

You continue now to read about the second plague of Egypt: i crots (frogs), which began in Esodo 7.

The Pharaoh, in verse 4, says: preait il Signôr (pray the Lord) che mi deliberi (that he may deliver me), me e il gno popul (me and my people), dai crots (from the frogs). He also says: o lassarai che il popul al ledi a fâi un sacrifici al Signôr (I shall let the people go make a sacrifice unto the Lord, I shall allow that the people make a sacrifice unto the Lord). You find the present subjunctive used twice in this verse. Compare below the present indicative and present subjunctive forms:

mi delibere
preait che mi deliberi
he delivers me
pray that he delivers me, pray that he may deliver me

il popul al va
o lassarai che il popul al ledi
the people go
I shall let the people go, I shall allow that the people go

Moses, in verse 5, says to the Pharaoh: a ti il vantaç (the advantage is yours; literally, unto you [is] the advantage). By this, Moses tells the Pharaoh that the advantage of establishing the moment at which the plague will cease is for the Pharaoh to have.

Moses continues: cuant ti vadial ben che o prei par te (when does it suit you that I pray for you), pai tiei fameis e pal to popul (for your servants and for your people) che i crots a sparissin di li di te (that the frogs disappear from you) e des vuestris cjasis (and from your houses) e che a restin dome tal flum (and that they remain only in the river)?

The question cuant ti vadial ben che o prei par te? can be understood a number of different ways in English, including: when does it suit you that I pray for you?, when does it please you that I pray for you?, when do you want me to pray for you?, etc. Vadial is an interrogative form of al va; the interrogative form of al va is also expressed in Friulian as vaial. The expression lâ ben can be understood quite literally as meaning to go well.

Versets 6-11

Vocabulary: doman (tomorrow), sucedi (to happen, to occur), jessî di (to take leave of), berlâ (to yell, to cry out), viers di (towards), in merit di (regarding, concerning), mandâ (to send), par cjastic (as a punishment), crepâ (to die), il cort (courtyard), il cjamp (field), intassâ (to pile up), l’infet (contamination), slargjâsi par (to spread through), tirâ il flât (to take a breath, to breathe), indurî (to harden), ancjemò di plui (even more), il cûr (heart), no… gran (not at all, hardly), scoltâ (to listen), antiviodi (to foresee, to predict).

In verse 6, Moses guarantees the Pharaoh that the frogs will disappear and provides the reason: al sucedarà come che tu âs dit (it will happen as you have said), par che tu sepis (so that you know) che no ’nd è un (that there is no [other] one) come il Signôr nestri Diu (like the Lord our God).

tu sâs
par che tu sepis
you know
so that you know

Other portions of text that you may need assistance with include: from verse 7, i crots si ’nt laran dome intal flum (the frogs will go only in the river; that is, the frogs will remain in the river only); from verse 8: in merit dai crots che lui jai veve mandâts par cjastic al faraon (regarding the frogs that he [the Lord] had sent unto the Pharaoh in punishment); from verse 11: il faraon al viodè che si podeve tirâ il flât (the Pharaoh saw that one was able to breathe; that one was able to take a breath).

Versets 12-15

Vocabulary: alçâ (to raise), bati (to strike, to hit), il pulvin (dust), tramudâsi in (to turn into, to change into), la zanzare (mosquito), capitâ (to happen, to occur), un stragjo di (an excessive amount of), la opare (action, deed), fâ la stesse opare (to carry out the same action), no rivâ adore (to be unable), ardi (to burn, to sting), la man (hand), simpri di plui (even more), no… lafè (not at all, hardly).

You now read about the third plague: lis zanzaris (mosquitoes). This grouping of verses does not present any particular difficulty in the langauge; read through it with the aid of the vocabulary listed above.

Versets 16-19

Vocabulary: jevâ (to arise, to get up), denant dì (early in the morning), presentâsi (to present oneself), sul ôr da l’aghe (along the shore), il tavan (horsefly), il teren (ground, land), jessi a stâ (to live), invadi (to overcome, to invade, to infest), in chê dì (on that day), tignî di bande (to spare, to preserve; literally, to keep to the side, to keep aside), il spieli (marvel, wonder).

You now read about the fourth plague: i tavans (horseflies).

In verse 17, you read: lis cjasis dai egjizians (the houses of the Egyptians) e ancje il teren là che a son a stâ (and also the ground upon which they live) a saran invadûts dai tavans (shall be overcome with horseflies).

From verses 17 and 18, learn the following wordings: là che a son a stâ (where they live), là che al è a stâ il gno popul (where my people live).

In verse 18, you read that Moses is to tell the Pharaoh that Goshen shall remain unaffected: jo o tignarai di bande la regjon di Gosen (I shall spare the Goshen region; literally, I shall keep aside the Goshen region); li no ’nt sarà tavans (there shall not be any horseflies there).

Versets 20-23

Vocabulary: plombâ (to strike), un disordin di (a great deal of), fiscâ (to ravage), par colpe di (on account of), vê indiment (to mention, to invoke), sot i vôi di (under the eyes of), concepî (to conceive), tâl (such), claponâ (to stone, to lapidate), il desert (desert), a trê dîs di viaç (three days’ journey away), ordenâ (to order, to command).

In verse 21, the Pharaoh tells Moses and Aaron to perform their sacrifice in Egypt: culì dongje (literally, here nearby). Moses, in verse 22, responds: no si pò fâ chel tant (we cannot do this; more literally, one cannot do as much, this action cannot be done, etc.). The reason that they cannot perform their sacrifice in Egypt is given by Moses in this same verse: a son une robe nancje di vêle indiment cui egjizians (they [our sacrifices] are a thing to not even be mentioned amongst the Egyptians). The Israelites made offerings of animals that were considered sacred by the Egyptians. In the remainder of verse 22, tu puedis dome crodi se no nus claponaran is to be understood as you can just imagine that they will stone us.

Versets 24-28

Vocabulary: a pat che (on the condition that), masse lontan (too far), a pene (as soon as), slontanâsi (to distance oneself, to go away), finîle di (to stop), zuiâ (to play; used here in the sense of to deceive), la semence (seed; see note below regarding di semence).

In verse 25, ma però il faraon al à di finîle di zuiânus means but the Pharaoh has to stop playing us (that is, the Pharaoh must stop deceiving us). In colloquial English, finîle can be understood as meaning to cut it out.

In verse 27, you read: no ’nt restà un di semence. The sense of this is that not a single horsefly remained; more literally, you can understand this portion of text as meaning not a trace of one remained, not the seed of one remained.