Adhuc pater meus vivit?

Joseph, at Genesis 45:3, in making himself known to his brothers, asks of them: Is my father yet living? (version Douay). This entry will examine Joseph’s question in Latin, Polish and Friulian versions, with verses 1-3 provided after the notes.

Latin. Adhuc pater meus vivit? The Latin adhuc in the context of Joseph’s question means still, yet, even now. Pater is a masculine noun meaning father, whence the masculine possessive meus. Consider: pater meus (my father); mater mea (my mother). As for vivit, this is a third-person singular verb form meaning liveth, from the present infinitive vivere (to live), whose present indicative conjugation is as follows: vivo (I live); vivis (thou livest); vivit (he/she liveth); vivimus (we live); vivitis (you live); vivunt (they live). Wherefore: Adhuc pater meus vivit? (yet my father liveth he?).

Polish. Czy ojciec mój jeszcze żyje? The Polish czy is employed in the formation of a yes-no question. Ojciec is a masculine noun meaning father, whence the masculine possessive mój. Consider: ojciec mój (my father); matka moja (my mother). Jeszcze is the Polish for still, yet, even now. As for żyje, this is a third-person singular verb form meaning liveth, from the imperfective verb żyć (to live), whose present tense conjugation is as follows: żyję (I live); żyjesz (thou livest); żyje (he/she liveth); żyjemy (we live); żyjecie (you live); żyją (they live). Wherefore: Czy ojciec mój jeszcze żyje? (my father yet liveth he?).

Friulian. Isal ancjemò vîf gno pari? The Friulian isal is an interrogative meaning is he?, which may also take the form esal. Consider: al è (he is); isal?, esal? (is he?). The interrogative is formed by the inversion of al è, with interposition of s. Ancjemò is the Friulian for still, yet, even now. As for the adjective vîf, this means living, alive; its four forms are: vîf (masculine singular); vîfs (masculine plural); vive (feminine singular); vivis (feminine plural). For instance: gno fradi al è vîf (my brother is living); i miei fradis a son vîfs (my brothers are living); mê sûr e je vive (my sister is living); lis mês sûrs a son vivis (my sisters are living). The reader will note that, in the matter of family members, the definite article is included before the possessive only in the plural: gno fradi (my brother), but i miei fradis (my brothers); mê sûr (my sister), but lis mês sûrs (my sisters). Wherefore: Isal ancjemò vîf gno pari? (is he yet living my father?).

Below is found the text of Genesis 45:1-3 in Latin, Polish and Friulian versions.

Latin (Biblia Vulgata): Non se poterat ultra cohibere Ioseph multis coram astantibus: unde praecepit ut egrederentur cuncti foras, et nullus interesset alienus agnitioni mutuae. Elevavitque vocem cum fletu: quam audierunt Aegyptii, omnisque domus Pharaonis. Et dixit fratribus suis: Ego sum Ioseph: adhuc pater meus vivit? Non poterant respondere fratres nimio terrore perterriti.

Polish (Biblia Tysiąclecia): Józef nie mógł opanować wzruszenia i wobec wszystkich, którzy tam byli, zawołał: «Niechaj wszyscy stąd wyjdą!» Nikogo nie było z nim, gdy Józef dał się poznać swym braciom. Wybuchnąwszy głośnym płaczem, tak że aż usłyszeli Egipcjanie oraz dworzanie faraona, rzekł do swych braci: «Ja jestem Józef! Czy ojciec mój jeszcze żyje?» Ale bracia nie byli w stanie mu odpowiedzieć, gdyż na jego widok ogarnął ich strach.

Friulian (Bibie par un popul): Alore Josef nol podè plui stratignîsi devant di dute la int che e jere ator di lui e al berlà: “Lait fûr ducj di chi!” e nol restà nissun dongje di lui intant che Josef si faseve ricognossi dai siei fradis, ma al craçà tant a fuart che lu sintirin ducj i Egjizians, e la gnove e rivà fin tal palaç dal faraon. Dissal Josef ai siei fradis: “Jo o soi Josef! Isal ancjemò vîf gno pari?” e i fradis no rivavin a rispuindii parcè che a jerin ducj restâts copâts a viodilu.