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Gothic Online

Lesson 3

Todd B. Krause and Jonathan Slocum

Linguistic Origins of the Goths

The linguistic remains of Gothic provide a window into the origin and history of the Gothic tribes that sometimes complements, and sometimes conflicts with, literary and archaeological records. Specifically, the words borrowed by Gothic from different languages, as well as those borrowed by other languages from Gothic, provide clues about cultural contact, and hence possible geographic location. Generally, at least in the ancient world, languages are assumed to borrow from neighboring languages. Such an assumption certainly leads to some objections, but on the whole it forms a good working hypothesis, which may lead to conclusions that can be compared with the archaeological and literary records for confirmation. If such a hypothesis fails, however, scholars must look for other means for the languages to come into contact, such as through travel along common trade routes.

The Gothic language as recorded in Wulfila's translation contains loan-words from Latin and Celtic. This could imply that either the Goths were settled close to Roman or Celtic populations, or they were in contact with them via commerce or some other means. Since the literary sources pertaining to the Goths generally speak of their origins near the Baltic Sea, scholars have primarily looked for what modes of contact the Goths may have had with these peoples from a distance. For example, if the Goths were never proximate to the Romans, the Latin loans may have come from Gothic mercenaries in Roman employ, since many of the loans have a military character: Gothic *anno: from Latin anno:na 'military wages'; Gothic milito:n 'serve in the army' from Latin mi:le:s, pl. mi:lite:s 'soldier'. Such loans could could date to the period of contact between Romans and Gutones, when Drusus, son of Tiberius, convinced Catualda, chief of the Gotones, to enter the fight against the Marcomanni.

Celtic loans are likewise often of a military or political character, such as Gothic reiks: compare Gaulish -ri:x, and Old Irish ri:, genitive ri:g. Such Celtic acculturation was possible during the Wielbark period, where the Gutones in the region belonged to the Lugian cult league. Scholars suspect the Lugians were considered Celts before the birth of Christ, but after a century had come to be considered Germanic, closely allied to the Vandals. This holdover of Celtic terms, as with Latin terms possibly borrowed during the Marcomannic wars, requires the Gutonic language to carry over into 4th century Gothic. Proximity to Celtic Lugians does not explain why these particular elements are common only to Celtic and Gothic, since other Germanic tribes were part of the Lugian league.

There are some facts (see Kortlandt, 2000) which argue against a theory of Scandinavian origin for the Goths. On the one hand, much of the source material, admittedly for Jordanes and perhaps for his predecessors Ablabius and Cassiodorus as well, is in the form of oral traditions, the interpretation of which may change within a culture as the culture itself changes. On the other hand, there are some problems with the notion of large-scale migration from the Baltic to the Black Sea. One problem is that the region between the point of origin and the destination is believed to be the homeland of the Slavs, who seem not to have moved until the advent of the Huns. This seems unlikely if there was a mass migration of Goths through the territory. (It is subject to the same argument that supposes the advent of the Huns is what caused the Goths to press into Roman territory.) In addition, the general trend of migration near the borderland of the steppes was westward from poorer lowland to richer upland, not eastward. Another typical trend of the period is that of migration toward more civilized areas rather than away from them, hence in this case toward the Roman Empire's nearest border, the Danube -- a direction in which the Slavs in fact moved, a few centuries later.

Therefore a different proposal arises (Kortlandt, 2000), namely that the Gutones moved south early, toward Italy and the Roman Empire, until they came to the Danube. There they adopted the speech of Alemannic tribes that had previously migrated to the region from the west, and whose speech would already be colored by Roman contact. They were prevented from entering Roman territory, and joined forces with other Germanic tribes in Lower Austria. This mingling of the Gutones with other Germanic tribes in the region resulted in the Gothic ethnogenesis.

One simple fact supporting such a theory is the panoply of names applied to the Goths in the course of their migrations, none of which is actually 'Goth' until a fairly late date. It seems especially likely that the Gothic tribe through the 3rd and 4th centuries was composed of several fluid factions. To add to such literary observations, there is linguistic data as well that may support a Gothic ethnogenesis in southern Germany.

In particular, some of the linguistic features deemed most conservative in Gothic, such as the reduplicated suffix in the past plural of weak verbs, may in fact be innovations. If the origin of the weak verbs is the dh-determinative, then the reduplication found in Gothic may not be an archaic holdover, but rather a form based on analogy with such forms as the preterite of *dhe: in Old High German.

In reference to Latin, the fact that the Latin suffix -a:rius is productive in the Gothic words such as bo:kareis 'scribe', la'isareis 'teacher', liuthareis 'singer', mo:tareis 'toll-taker', so:kareis 'disputer', may argue for closer contact than merely mercenary jargon. Other cultural loans from Latin, lacking military character, are common, e.g. aurali 'napkin' < Lat. o:ra:rium; kubitus 'reclining (company) at a table' < Lat. cubitus; aurti-gards, with first element from Latin hortus; me:s < Vulgar Latin me:sa < Latin me:nsa. The word lukarn 'lamp' is an early borrowing from Latin; aket, akeit 'vinegar', a borrowing from Latin ace:tum, because of non-palatalized c-, may have been borrowed in 1st-3rd centuries, before migration to Russia. Also borrowed from Latin were Kreks 'Greek' and marikreitum 'pearls', showing the change of Latin g to Gmc k, interesting in light of the fact that the Alemannic dialects lack voiced obstruents. In fact, Greek words often appear in Latinized forms, e.g. ai'pistula 'letter', ai'waggeljo: 'gospel', pau'rpura 'purple', diabulus 'devil'. Greek words with accented -i'- often show -j-, i.e. no accent, in Gothic: aikklesjo: 'congregation', skau'rpjo:no: 'of scorpions'. In general Greek o is represented by Gothic o:, as in Gothic Ai'rmo:gai'ne:s corresponding to Greek Ermoge'ne:s. However the fact that Greek o-stems are inflected as Gothic u-stems in the singular, and as i-stems in the plural, may be a result of Latin transmission: Iudaius, -a'us sg.; Iudaieis, e: pl.

Thus there may have been a protracted period of close contact between the Goths and Romans well before Wulifila's translation, and the Celtic loans need not have come from Lugians in the north, but possibly from the Bastarni (if they were in fact Celts) in the Balkans. Certain words adopted from Latin into Gothic also show devoicing characteristic of Alemannic dialects, which suggests that the Goths may have been in close proximity to southern Germanic dialects for an extended period. It seems that the linguistic picture of Gothic origins is as heterogeneous as that derived from the literary and archaeological remains.

Reading and Textual Analysis

The following passage is from John 6.1-14, in which Jesus provides enough bread and fish to feed the multitude. The Gothic translation shows some noteworthy linguistic features. In 6.6, the phrase haba'ida ta'ujan '(what) he would do' provides an example of a compound future tense, with a sense of necessity given by haban. The following verse, John 6.7, has the phrase twa'im hundam skatte: hla'ibo:s ni gano:ha'i sind, literally 'loaves at (the price) two hundred of coins are not enough'. This shows the common use of the genitive with a numeral, analogous to Modern English 'a little bit of money'; likewise it illustrates the use of an instrumental dative with geno:hs to denote price. John 6.8 contains the genitive Pai'tra'us. Greek loan words in -os tend to be declined according to the Gothic u-declension.

We find in verse 6.11 some insight into the original Greek source of the Gothic translation. As with the Old English translation and Wycliffe's translation of 1389, Gothic lacks the phrase 'to the disciples, and the disciples'. This suggests that the Gothic translator worked with a manuscript different from that used to prepare the King James Version, but belonging to the same family as that of earlier English translations.

Note also the syntax of the word wa'ihts in John 6.12 : wa'ihta'i ni fraqistna'i 'that nothing be lost'. Here the dative of wa'ihts (with negative ni) is used with an impersonal verb, giving more literally '(that) it be lost for (no)thing' or 'at (no)thing', equivalent to '(that) it be lost in no way, in no respect'. The syntax of John 6.14 is similarly noteworthy: gasai'hwandans tho:ei gatawida ta'ikn Ie:sus, literally 'seeing the-which-(Jesus)-did miracle', where the relative clause has been pulled to the front, before its actual antecedent. This fronting of the relative clause is common to many of the Indo-European languages, including Sanskrit and even its modern daughters, such as Hindi.

6:1 - Afar thata galaith Iesus ufar marein tho Galeilaie jah Tibairiade.

  • afar -- preposition; <afar> after, according to -- after
  • thata -- demonstrative pronoun; accusative singular neuter of <thata> this, that -- these things
  • galaith -- strong verb class 1; third person singular preterite of <galeithan> to go, travel -- went
  • Iesus -- strong proper noun, masculine; nominative singular of <Ie:sus> Jesus -- Jesus
  • ufar -- preposition; <ufar> over, above, beyond -- over
  • marein -- weak noun, feminine; dative singular of <marei> sea, lake -- sea
  • tho -- demonstrative used as article; accusative singular feminine of <sa, so, thata> this, that -- the
  • Galeilaie -- strong proper noun, masculine; genitive plural of <Galeilaius> Galilean -- of Galilee # literally 'of the Galileans'
  • jah -- conjunction; <jah> and, also -- and
  • Tibairiade -- strong proper noun, masculine; genitive plural of <*Tibai'riadeis> Tiberians -- (which is the sea of) Tiberias # literally '(and) of the Tiberians'

2 - jah laistida ina manageins filu, unte gasehwun taiknins thozei gatawida bi siukaim.

  • jah -- conjunction; <jah> and, also -- and
  • laistida -- weak verb class 1; third person singular preterite of <la'istjan> to follow -- followed
  • ina -- personal pronoun; accusative singular masculine of <is> he, she, it -- him
  • manageins -- weak noun, feminine; genitive singular of <managei> crowd, multitude -- multitude
  • filu -- strong noun, neuter; nominative singular of <filu> much, many -- a great
  • unte -- conjunction; <unte:> for, because, since, until -- because
  • gasehwun -- strong verb class 5; third person plural preterite of <gasai'hwan> to see -- they saw
  • taiknins -- strong noun, feminine; accusative plural of <ta'ikns> sign, wonder -- (his) miracles
  • thozei -- relative pronoun; accusative plural feminine of <saei> who, he who, which -- which
  • gatawida -- weak verb class 1; third person singular preterite of <gata'ujan> to do, make -- he did
  • bi -- preposition; <bi> by, about; concerning; around, against; according to, on account of; for; at; after; near -- on
  • siukaim -- adjective used as substantive; dative plural masculine of <siuks> sick -- them that were diseased

3 - usiddja than ana fairguni Iesus jah jainar gasat mith siponjam seinaim.

  • usiddja -- strong verb class 7; third person singular suppletive preterite of <usgaggan> to go out -- went up
  • than -- conjunction; <than> when, as (long as); then, at that time; but, and, however -- and
  • ana -- preposition; <ana> in, on, upon, at, over; to, into; against -- into
  • fairguni -- strong noun, neuter; accusative singular of <fai'rguni> mountain -- a mountain
  • Iesus -- strong proper noun, masculine; nominative singular of <Ie:sus> Jesus -- Jesus
  • jah -- conjunction; <jah> and, also -- and
  • jainar -- adverb; <ja'inar> yonder, there -- there
  • gasat -- strong verb class 5; third person singular preterite of <gasitan> to sit -- he sat
  • mith -- preposition; <mith> with, among, together with, through, by, near -- with
  • siponjam -- strong noun, masculine; dative plural of <sipo:neis> disciple -- disciples
  • seinaim -- possessive adjective; dative plural masculine of <*seins> one's own -- his

4 - wasuh than nehwa pasxa, so dulths Iudaie.

  • wasuh -- strong verb class 5; third person singular preterite of <wisan> to be + enclitic conjunction; <-uh> but, and, now, therefore -- was
  • than -- conjunction; <than> when, as (long as); then, at that time; but, and, however -- and
  • nehwa -- preposition; <ne:hwa> near -- nigh
  • pasxa -- strong noun, feminine; indeclinable; <paska> Passover -- the passover
  • so -- demonstrative used as article; nominative singular feminine of <sa, so, thata> this, that -- the
  • dulths -- strong noun, feminine; nominative singular of <dulths> feast -- a feast
  • Iudaie -- strong proper noun, masculine; genitive plural of <*Iudaieis> Jew -- of the Jews

5 - tharuh ushof augona Iesus jah gaumida thammei manageins filu iddja du imma, qathuh du Filippau: hwathro bugjam hlaibans, ei matjaina thai?

  • tharuh -- conjunction; <tharuh> therefore, but, and; there; now -- When... then
  • ushof -- strong verb class 6; third person singular preterite of <ushafjan> to lift up -- lifted up
  • augona -- weak noun, neuter; accusative plural of <a'ugo:> eye -- (his) eyes
  • Iesus -- strong proper noun, masculine; nominative singular of <Ie:sus> Jesus -- Jesus
  • jah -- conjunction; <jah> and, also -- and
  • gaumida -- weak verb class 1; third person singular preterite of <ga'umjan> to observe, perceive, see -- saw
  • thammei -- relative pronoun; dative singular neuter of <saei> who, he who, which -- ...
  • manageins -- weak noun, feminine; nominative plural of <managei> crowd, multitude -- company
  • filu -- strong noun, neuter; nominative singular of <filu> much, many -- a great
  • iddja -- strong verb class 7; third person singular suppletive preterite of <usgaggan> to go out -- come
  • du -- preposition; <du> to, towards; against; in -- unto
  • imma -- personal pronoun; dative singular masculine of <is> he, she, it -- him
  • qathuh -- strong verb class 5; third person singular preterite of <qithan> to say, speak + enclitic conjunction; <-uh> but, and, now, therefore -- he saith
  • du -- preposition; <du> to, towards; against; in -- unto
  • Filippau -- strong proper noun, masculine; dative singular of <Filippus> Philip -- Philip
  • hwathro -- adverb; <hwathro:> whence, where -- whence
  • bugjam -- weak verb class 1; first person plural of <bugjan> to buy -- shall we buy
  • hlaibans -- strong noun, masculine; accusative plural of <hla'ifs> bread, loaf -- bread
  • ei -- conjunction; <ei> that, so that; whether; (relative particle) -- that
  • matjaina -- weak verb class 1; third person plural present subjunctive of <matjan> to eat -- may eat
  • thai -- demonstrative used as pronoun; nominative plural masculine of <sa, so, thata> this, that -- these

6 - thatuh than qath fraisands ina: ith silba wissa thatei habaida taujan.

  • thatuh -- demonstrative used as pronoun; accusative singular neuter of <sa, so, thata> this, that + enclitic conjunction; <-uh> but, and, now, therefore -- this
  • than -- conjunction; <than> when, as (long as); then, at that time; but, and, however -- and
  • qath -- strong verb class 5; third person singular preterite of <qithan> to say, speak -- he said
  • fraisands -- strong verb class 7; nominative singular masculine of present participle of <fra'isan> to tempt -- to prove
  • ina -- personal pronoun; accusative singular masculine of <is> he, she, it -- him
  • ith -- conjunction; <ith> but, however, if -- for
  • silba -- reflexive pronoun; nominative singular masculine of <silba> self -- himself
  • wissa -- preterite present verb; third person singular preterite of <*witan> to know -- he... knew
  • thatei -- relative pronoun; accusative singular neuter of <saei> who, he who, which -- what
  • habaida -- weak verb class 3; third person singular preterite of <haban> to have -- he would
  • taujan -- weak verb class 1; infinitive of <taujan> to do -- do

7 - andhof imma Filippus: twaim hundam skatte hlaibos ni ganohai sind thaim, thei nimai hwarjizuh leitil.

  • andhof -- strong verb class 6; third person singular preterite of <andhafjan> to answer -- answered
  • imma -- personal pronoun; dative singular masculine of <is> he, she, it -- him
  • Filippus -- strong proper noun, masculine; nominative singular of <Filippus> Philip -- Philip
  • twaim -- numeral; dative plural masculine of <twa> two -- two
  • hundam -- numeral; dative plural masculine of <hund> hundred -- hundred
  • skatte -- strong noun, masculine; genitive plural of <skatts> coin, denarius -- pennyworth of
  • hlaibos -- strong noun, masculine; nominative plural of <hla'ifs> bread, loaf -- bread
  • ni -- adverb; <ni> not -- not
  • ganohai -- adjective; nominative plural masculine of <gano:hs> enough -- sufficient
  • sind -- strong verb class 5; athematic third person plural of <wisan> to be -- is
  • thaim -- demonstrative used as pronoun; dative plural masculine of <sa, so, thata> this, that -- for these
  • thei -- conjunction; <thei> that, so that; as -- that
  • nimai -- strong verb class 4; third person singular present subjunctive of <niman> to take, receive -- may take
  • hwarjizuh -- indefinite pronoun; nominative singular masculine of <hwarjizuh> each, every -- every one (of them)
  • leitil -- adjective used as substantive; accusative singular neuter of <leitils> little -- a little

8 - qath ains thize siponje is, Andraias, brothar Paitraus Seimonaus:

  • qath -- strong verb class 5; third person singular preterite of <qithan> to say, speak -- saith (unto him)
  • ains -- numeral; nominative singular masculine of <a'ins> one -- one
  • thize -- demonstrative used as article; genitive plural masculine of <sa, so, thata> this, that -- ...
  • siponje -- strong noun, masculine; genitive plural of <sipo:neis> disciple -- disciples
  • is -- personal pronoun; genitive singular masculine of <is> he, she, it -- his
  • Andraias -- weak proper noun, masculine; nominative singular of <Andrai'as> Andrew -- Andrew
  • brothar -- weak noun, masculine; nominative singular of <bro:thar> brother -- brother
  • Paitraus -- strong proper noun, masculine; genitive singular of <Pai'trus> Peter -- Peter's
  • Seimonaus -- strong proper noun, masculine; genitive singular of <Seimo:n> Simon -- Simon

9 - ist magula ains her, saei habaith .e. hlaibans barizeinans jah .b. fiskans; akei thata hwa ist du swa managaim?

  • ist -- strong verb class 5; athematic third person singular of <wisan> to be -- there is
  • magula -- weak noun, masculine; nominative singular of <magula> little boy -- lad # diminutive of magus 'child, boy'
  • ains -- numeral; nominative singular masculine of <a'ins> one -- a
  • her -- adverb; <he:r> here -- here
  • saei -- relative pronoun; nominative masculine singular of <saei> who, he who, which -- which
  • habaith -- weak verb class 3; third person singular of <haban> to have -- hath
  • .e. -- numeral; <fimf> five -- five
  • hlaibans -- strong noun, masculine; accusative plural of <hla'ifs> bread, loaf -- loaves
  • barizeinans -- adjective; accusative plural masculine of <barizeins> of barley -- barley
  • jah -- conjunction; <jah> and, also -- and
  • .b. -- numeral; <twa'i> two -- two
  • fiskans -- strong noun, masculine; accusative plural of <fisks> fish -- (small) fishes
  • akei -- conjunction; <akei> but, yet, still, nevertheless -- but
  • thata -- demonstrative used as person pronoun; nominative singular neuter of <sa, so, thata> this, that -- they
  • hwa -- interrogative pronoun; nominative singular neuter of <hwas> who, what -- what
  • ist -- strong verb class 5; athematic third person singular of <wisan> to be -- are
  • du -- preposition; <du> to, towards; against; in -- among
  • swa -- adverb; <swa> so, thus, as -- so
  • managaim -- adjective used as substantive; dative plural masculine of <managa'im> much, many -- many

10 - ith Iesus qath: waurkeith thans mans anakumbjan. wasuh than hawi manag ana thamma stada. tharuh anakumbidedun wairos rathjon swaswe fimf thusundjos.

  • ith -- conjunction; <ith> but, however, if -- and
  • Iesus -- strong proper noun, masculine; nominative singular of <Ie:sus> Jesus -- Jesus
  • qath -- strong verb class 5; third person singular preterite of <qithan> to say, speak -- said
  • waurkeith -- weak verb class 1; second person plural imperative of <wau'rkjan> to work, to make -- make
  • thans -- demonstrative used as article; accusative plural masculine of <sa, so, thata> this, that -- the
  • mans -- irregular noun, masculine; accusative plural of <manna> man -- men
  • anakumbjan -- weak verb class 1; infinitive of <anakumbjan> to recline, to sit down -- sit down
  • wasuh -- strong verb class 5; third person singular preterite of <wisan> to be + enclitic conjunction; <-uh> but, and, now, therefore -- there was
  • than -- conjunction; <than> when, as (long as); then, at that time; but, and, however -- now
  • hawi -- strong noun, neuter; nominative singular of <hawi> grass -- grass
  • manag -- adjective; nominative singular neuter of <manag> much, many -- much
  • ana -- preposition; <ana> in, on, upon, at, over; to, into; against -- in
  • thamma -- demonstrative used as article; dative singular masculine of <sa, so, thata> this, that -- the
  • stada -- strong noun, masculine; dative singular of <staths> place; land -- place
  • tharuh -- adverb; <tharuh> therefore, but, and; there; now -- so
  • anakumbidedun -- weak verb class 1; third person plural preterite of <anakumbjan> to recline, to sit down -- sat down
  • wairos -- strong noun, masculine; nominative plural of <wai'r> man -- the men
  • rathjon -- weak noun, feminine; dative singular of <rathjo:> number -- in number
  • swaswe -- adverb; <swaswe:> as, just as; so as; so as to, so that -- about
  • fimf -- numeral; <fimf> five -- five
  • thusundjos -- numeral; nominative plural feminine of <thu:sundi> thousand -- thousand

11 - namuh than thans hlaibans Iesus jah awiliudonds gadailida thaim anakumbjandam; samaleiko jah thize fiske, swa file swe wildedun.

  • namuh -- strong verb class 4; third person singular preterite of <niman> to take, receive + enclitic conjunction; <-uh> but, and, now, therefore -- took
  • than -- conjunction; <than> when, as (long as); then, at that time; but, and, however -- and
  • thans -- demonstrative used as article; accusative plural masculine of <sa, so, thata> this, that -- the
  • hlaibans -- strong noun, masculine; accusative plural of <hla'ifs> bread, loaf -- loaves
  • Iesus -- strong proper noun, masculine; nominative singular of <Ie:sus> Jesus -- Jesus
  • jah -- conjunction; <jah> and, also -- and
  • awiliudonds -- weak verb class 2; nominative singular masculine of present participle of <awiliudo:n> to give thanks -- when he had given thanks
  • gadailida -- weak verb class 1; third person singular preterite of <gada'iljan> to divide -- he distributed
  • thaim -- demonstrative used as person pronoun; dative plural masculine of <sa, so, thata> this, that -- to them # the part 'to the disciples, and the disciples' does not occur in the Gothic text
  • anakumbjandam -- weak verb class 1; dative plural masculine of participle of <anakumbjan> to recline, to sit down -- that were set down
  • samaleiko -- adverb; <samaleiko:> in like manner, likewise -- likewise
  • jah -- conjunction; <jah> and, also -- and
  • thize -- demonstrative used as article; genitive plural masculine of <sa, so, thata> this, that -- of the
  • fiske -- strong noun, masculine; genitive plural of <fisks> fish -- fishes
  • swa -- adverb; <swa> so, thus, as -- as
  • file -- strong noun, neuter; genitive plural of <filu> much, many -- much
  • swe -- adverb; <swe:> like, as, just as; so that; about -- as
  • wildedun -- irregular verb; third person plural preterite of <wiljan> to will, wish -- they would

12 - thanuh, bithe sadai waurthun, qath du siponjam seinaim: galisith thos aflifnandeins drauhsnos, thei waihtai ni fraqistnai.

  • thanuh -- conjunction; <than> when, as (long as); then, at that time; but, and, however + enclitic conjunction; <-uh> but, and, now, therefore -- ...
  • bithe -- conjunction; <bithe:> while, when, after that, as soon as; then, thereupon -- when
  • sadai -- adjective; nominative plural masculine of <*sads> satisfied -- filled
  • waurthun -- strong verb class 3; third person plural preterite of <wai'rthan> to become, to happen -- they were
  • qath -- strong verb class 5; third person singular preterite of <qithan> to say, speak -- he said
  • du -- preposition; <du> to, towards; against; in -- unto
  • siponjam -- strong noun, masculine; dative plural of <sipo:neis> disciple -- disciples
  • seinaim -- possessive adjective; dative plural masculine of <*seins> one's own -- his
  • galisith -- strong verb class 5; second person plural imperative of <galisan> to gather -- gather up
  • thos -- demonstrative used as article; accusative plural feminine of <sa, so, thata> this, that -- the
  • aflifnandeins -- weak verb class 4; accusative plural feminine of present participle of <aflifnan> to remain -- that remain
  • drauhsnos -- strong noun, feminine; accusative plural of <dra'usna> piece -- fragments
  • thei -- conjunction; <thei> that, so that; as -- that
  • waihtai -- strong noun, feminine; dative singular of <wai'hts> thing -- -thing # literally 'in (no)thing'
  • ni -- adverb; <ni> not -- no-
  • fraqistnai -- weak verb class 4; third person singular subjunctive of <fraqistnan> to be lost, to perish -- be lost

13 - thanuh galesun jah gafullidedun .ib. tainjons gabruko us fimf hlaibam thaim barizeinam, thatei aflifnoda thaim matjandam.

  • thanuh -- conjunction; <than> when, as (long as); then, at that time; but, and, however + enclitic conjunction; <-uh> but, and, now, therefore -- therefore
  • galesun -- strong verb class 5; third person plural preterite of <galisan> to gather -- they gathered (them) together
  • jah -- conjunction; <jah> and, also -- and
  • gafullidedun -- weak verb class 1; third person plural preterite of <gafulljan> to fill -- filled
  • .ib. -- numeral; <twalif> twelve -- twelve
  • tainjons -- weak noun, feminine; accusative plural of <ta'injo:> basket -- baskets
  • gabruko -- strong noun, feminine; genitive plural of <gabruka> fragment -- with the fragments
  • us -- preposition; <us> out, out of, from -- of
  • fimf -- numeral; <fimf> five -- five
  • hlaibam -- strong noun, masculine; dative plural of <hla'ifs> bread, loaf -- loaves
  • thaim -- demonstrative used as article; dative plural masculine of <sa, so, thata> this, that -- the
  • barizeinam -- adjective; dative plural masculine of <barizeins> of barley -- barley
  • thatei -- relative pronoun; nominative singular neuter of <saei> who, he who, which -- which
  • aflifnoda -- weak verb class 4; third person singular preterite of <aflifnan> to remain -- remained (over and above)
  • thaim -- demonstrative used as person pronoun; dative plural masculine of <sa, so, thata> this, that -- them
  • matjandam -- weak verb class 1; dative plural masculine of present participle of <matjan> to eat -- that had eaten

14 - tharuh thai mans gasaihwandans thoei gatawida taikn Iesus, qethun thatei sa ist bi sunjai praufetus sa qimanda in tho manaseth.

  • tharuh -- conjunction; <tharuh> therefore, but, and; there; now -- then
  • thai -- demonstrative used as adjective; nominative plural masculine of <sa, so, thata> this, that -- those
  • mans -- irregular noun, masculine; nominative plural of <manna> man -- men
  • gasaihwandans -- strong verb class 5; nominative plural masculine of present participle of <gasai'hwan> to see -- when they had seen
  • thoei -- relative pronoun; accusative singular feminine of <saei> who, he who, which -- that # taking its gender from ta'ikns following
  • gatawida -- weak verb class 1; third person singular preterite of <gata'ujan> to do, make -- did
  • taikn -- strong noun, feminine; accusative singular of <ta'ikns> sign, wonder -- the miracle
  • Iesus -- strong proper noun, masculine; nominative singular of <Ie:sus> Jesus -- Jesus
  • qethun -- strong verb class 5; third person plural preterite of <qithan> to say, speak -- said
  • thatei -- conjunction; <thatei> that, because, if -- ...
  • sa -- demonstrative used as pronoun; nominative singular masculine of <sa, so, thata> this, that -- this
  • ist -- strong verb class 5; athematic third person singular of <wisan> to be -- is
  • bi -- preposition; <bi> by, about; concerning; around, against; according to, on account of; for; at; after; near -- of
  • sunjai -- strong noun, feminine; dative singular of <sunja> truth -- a truth
  • praufetus -- strong noun, masculine; nominative singular of <prau'fe:tus> prophet -- prophet
  • sa -- demonstrative used as adjective; nominative singular masculine of <sa, so, thata> this, that -- that
  • qimanda -- strong verb class 4; nominative singular masculine of present participle of <qiman> to come, arrive -- that should come
  • in -- preposition; <in> into, towards; on account of; in, among, by -- into
  • tho -- demonstrative used as article; accusative singular feminine of <sa, so, thata> this, that -- the
  • manaseth -- strong noun, feminine; accusative singular of <manase:ths> mankind, the world -- world

Lesson Text

6:1 Afar thata galaith Iesus ufar marein tho Galeilaie jah Tibairiade. 2 jah laistida ina manageins filu, unte gasehwun taiknins thozei gatawida bi siukaim. 3 usiddja than ana fairguni Iesus jah jainar gasat mith siponjam seinaim. 4 wasuh than nehwa pasxa, so dulths Iudaie. 5 tharuh ushof augona Iesus jah gaumida thammei manageins filu iddja du imma, qathuh du Filippau: hwathro bugjam hlaibans, ei matjaina thai? 6 thatuh than qath fraisands ina: ith silba wissa thatei habaida taujan. 7 andhof imma Filippus: twaim hundam skatte hlaibos ni ganohai sind thaim, thei nimai hwarjizuh leitil. 8 qath ains thize siponje is, Andraias, brothar Paitraus Seimonaus: 9 ist magula ains her, saei habaith .e. hlaibans barizeinans jah .b. fiskans; akei thata hwa ist du swa managaim? 10 ith Iesus qath: waurkeith thans mans anakumbjan. wasuh than hawi manag ana thamma stada. tharuh anakumbidedun wairos rathjon swaswe fimf thusundjos. 11 namuh than thans hlaibans Iesus jah awiliudonds gadailida thaim anakumbjandam; samaleiko jah thize fiske, swa file swe wildedun. 12 thanuh, bithe sadai waurthun, qath du siponjam seinaim: galisith thos aflifnandeins drauhsnos, thei waihtai ni fraqistnai. 13 thanuh galesun jah gafullidedun .ib. tainjons gabruko us fimf hlaibam thaim barizeinam, thatei aflifnoda thaim matjandam.

14 tharuh thai mans gasaihwandans thoei gatawida taikn Iesus, qethun thatei sa ist bi sunjai praufetus sa qimanda in tho manaseth.

Translation

From the King James version:
6:1 After these things Jesus went over the sea of Galilee, which is the sea of Tiberias. 2 And a great multitude followed him, because they saw his miracles which he did on them that were diseased. 3 And Jesus went up into a mountain, and there he sat with his disciples. 4 And the passover, a feast of the Jews, was nigh. 5 When Jesus then lifted up his eyes, and saw a great company come unto him, he saith unto Philip, Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat? 6 And this he said to prove him: for he himself knew what he would do. 7 Philip answered him, Two hundred pennyworth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little. 8 One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter's brother, saith unto him, 9 There is a lad here, which hath five barley loaves, and two small fishes: but what are they among so many? 10 And Jesus said, Make the men sit down. Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, in number about five thousand. 11 And Jesus took the loaves; and when he had given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes as much as they would. 12 When they were filled, he said unto his disciples, Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost. 13 Therefore they gathered them together, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves, which remained over and above unto them that had eaten.
14 Then those men, when they had seen the miracle that Jesus did, said, This is of a truth that prophet that should come into the world.

Grammar

11. Strong Declension

Not all nominal stems end in a vowel. Several end in consonants. The type most common in Gothic, the n-stems, will be discussed in a subsequent lesson. The consonant stems in the present section are fewer in number, but generally denote important concepts, the names for which are undoubtedly survivals from a very archaic stage of the language.

11.1. r-Stems

The r-stem nouns form a small but important fraction of the Gothic vocabulary. All r-stems in Gothic are inherited directly from Proto-Indo-European. The nouns fadar 'father', bro:thar 'brother', dau'htar 'daughter', and swistar 'sister' illustrate the declension. All Gothic r-stems denote familial relation, with the grammatical gender following the natural gender.

r-Stem   Masculine       Feminine    
                 
Stem   bro:thar-   fadar-   dau'htar-   swistar-
                 
N Sg.   bro:thar       dau'htar   swistar
A, V   bro:thar   fadar (V)   dau'htar   swistar
G   bro:thrs       dau'htrs   swistrs
D   bro:thr       dau'htr   swistr
                 
N Pl.   bro:thrjus       dau'htrjus   swistrjus
A   bro:thruns       dau'htruns   swistruns
G   bro:thre:       dau'htre:   swistre:
D   bro:thrum       dau'htrum   swistrum
                 

The word fadar occurs only once in the vocative, the word atta 'father' being used elsewhere. The declensions of the nouns are the same, being reproduced for the sake of completeness. The nominative plural ending -jus comes by analogy with sunjus, the r-stems already having accusative and dative plurals identical to the u-stems (see Section 7.2).

11.2. nd-Stems

The nd-stems derive from an original present participle formation, but were frozen as substantives. These nouns are generally masculine. The nouns frijo:nds 'friend', fijands 'enemy', nasjands 'savior' illustrate the declension.

nd-Stem   Masculine        
             
Stem   frijo:nd-   fijand-   nasjand-
             
N Sg.   frijo:nds   fijands   nasjands
A, V   frijo:nd   fijand   nasjand
G   frijo:ndis   fijandis   nasjandis
D   frijo:nd   *fijand   nasjand
             
N Pl.   frijo:nds   fijands   nasjands
A   frijo:nds   fijands   nasjands
G   frijo:nde:   fijande:   nasjande:
D   frijo:ndam   fijandam   nasjandam
             

Note the identical forms of the nominative singular and nominative and accusative plural. The following nouns decline similarly: allwaldands 'the Almighty'; bisitands 'neighbor'; da'upjands 'baptizer, baptist'; fra'ujino:nds 'ruler'; fraweitands 'avenger'; gibands 'giver'; me:rjands 'proclaimer'; midumo:nds 'mediator'; talzjands 'teacher'.

11.3. Other Consonant Stems

Some noun stems end in consonants different from those above. Their declensions are not prevalent enough to warrant separate discussion, so they are collected below. The nouns me:no:ths 'month', reiks 'ruler' are masculine; bau'rgs 'city', mitaths 'measure', nahts 'night' are feminine; fo:n 'fire' is neuter. Their forms are given below.

Cons. Stems   Masculine       Feminine           Neuter
                         
Stem   me:no:th-   reik-   bau'rg-   mitath-   naht-   fo:n-
                         
N Sg.   me:no:ths   reiks   bau'rgs   mitaths   nahts   fo:n
A, V   *me:no:th   *reik   bau'rg   mitath   naht   fo:n
G   *me:no:ths?   reikis   bau'rgs   mitads   nahts   funins
D   me:no:th   reik   bau'rg   mitath   naht   funin
                         
N Pl.   *me:no:ths   reiks   bau'rgs   mitaths   nahts    
A   me:no:ths   reiks   bau'rgs   mitaths   nahts    
G   *me:no:the:   reike:   bau'rge:   mitathe:   nahte:    
D   me:no:thum   reikam   bau'rgim   mitathim   nahtam    
                         

Note: the feminine genitive and dative plurals were formed by analogy with i-stems, except the dative plural nahtam which parallels dagam. Note also the -d- in the genitive singular of mitaths. The only neuter noun of this type is fo:n, with no plural forms attested.

12. Demonstratives and the Definite Article

In comparison to other Germanic languages, Gothic has a fairly reduced set of demonstratives. The demonstratives could generally be used as deictic adjectives, or in a substantival role as demonstrative pronouns.

The most common demonstrative is sa, thata, so:. As adjective, it may point to something relatively close ('this') or relatively distant ('that') from the perspective of the speaker. In a less marked sense, the demonstrative is used as a simple definite article 'the'. As pronouns, the same forms may translate as 'this one' or 'that one'. The forms are as follows.

    Masculine   Neuter   Feminine
             
N Sg.   sa   thata   so:
A   thana   thata   so:
G   this   this   thizo:s
D   thamma   thamma   thiza'i
             
N Pl.   tha'i   tho:   tho:s
A   thans   tho:   tho:s
G   thize:   thize:   thizo:
D   tha'im   tha'im   tha'im
             

The final a of thata is often elided before ist: that' ist. A neuter instrumental singular is preserved in certain phrases and as part of some conjunctions: ni the: haldis 'none the more'; bi-the: 'while'; jath-the: 'and if'; du-the: 'therefore'; the:-ei 'that'. A locative or instumental form survives as the relative particle thei 'that'.

The emphatic demonstrative sah, thatuh, tho:h 'that, that in particular, that especially' is formed by adding the enclitic -uh to the forms of sa, thata, so:. This demonstrative expresses not only emphasis, but contrast as well. The attested forms are as follows.

    Masculine   Neuter   Feminine
             
N Sg.   sah   thatuh   so:h
A   thanuh   thatuh    
G   thizuh   thizuh    
D   thammuh   thammuh    
             
N Pl.   tha'ih        
A   thanzuh   tho:h    
G            
D       tha'imuh    
             

When the simple pronoun ends in -a, the -a is elided before the following -u, except in the nominative singular masculine (that is, weakly stressed -a is lost). When the simple pronoun ends in a long vowel or diphthong, the following -u is elided. Final -s changes to -z before -uh. The instrumental occurs in the adverb bi-the:h 'after that, then afterward'.

There are remnants of a demonstrative built to the stem hi-. These are confined, for the most part, to a small number of temporal adverbial phrases: himma daga 'on this day, today'; und hina daga 'to this day'; fram himma 'henceforth'; und hita (nu) 'till now, hitherto'; also hidre: 'to here'.

The demonstrative ja'ins 'that, that there, yon' declines as a strong adjective (the nom. and acc. pl. neut. is always ja'inata). The demonstratives silba 'self' and sama 'same' decline as weak adjectives.

13. Adjectives: Strong Declension

Adjectives employ two different sets of endings, strong and weak. These names only reflect a binary system, equivalent to Type A and Type B, respectively; the adjectives 'strong' and 'weak' have no other connotations. Whereas a given noun is either strong (inherently) or weak (inherently) but not both, a given adjective by contrast may employ either strong or weak endings as the context requires. There is thus a difference in use and connotation between strong adjectival endings and their weak counterparts. The term 'strong adjective' is generally used as a shorthand for 'adjective with strong endings'; similarly 'weak adjective' means 'adjective with weak endings'. Using this terminology, the difference in usage is the following: strong adjectives are indefinite, weak adjectives are definite.

13.1. a/ja/wa-Stems

The strong adjective endings are a mixture of the endings of strong nouns like dags, wau'rd, giba (cf. Section 3) and of pronouns (cf. Sections 8.2 and 12). The adjective blinds 'blind' illustrates the declension of a-stem adjectives. Pronominal endings are italicized.

Strong a-Stem   Masculine   Neuter   Feminine
             
N Sg.   blinds   blind, blindata   blinda
A   blindana   blind, blindata   blinda
G   blindis   blindis   blinda'izo:s
D   blindamma   blindamma   blinda'i
             
N Pl.   blinda'i   blinda   blindo:s
A   blindans   blinda   blindo:s
G   blinda'ize:   blinda'ize:   blinda'izo:
D   blinda'im   blinda'im   blinda'im
             

The ja-stem adjectives divide into two groups: (1) those with short radical syllable, and those whose stems end in a vowel; (2) those with a long radical syllable. The difference between the two only appears in the singular forms. The adjective midjis 'middle' illustrates the endings of group (1).

Strong ja-Stem   Masculine   Neuter   Feminine
Group (1)            
N Sg.   midjis   *midi, midjata   midja
A   midjana   *midi, midjata   midja
G   midjis   midjis   midja'izo:s
D   midjamma   midjamma   midja'i
             
N Pl.   midja'i   midja   midjo:s
A   midjans   midja   midjo:s
G   midja'ize:   midja'ize:   midja'izo:
D   midja'im   midja'im   midja'im
             

The adjective wiltheis 'wild' serves to illustrate the endings of group (2). The forms which differ from those of Group (1) are in boldface.

Strong ja-Stem   Masculine   Neuter   Feminine
Group (2)            
N Sg.   wiltheis   wilthi, wilthjata   wilthi
A   wilthjana   wilthi, wilthjata   wilthja
G   *wiltheis   *wiltheis, -jis?   wiltha'izo:s
D   wilthjamma   wilthjamma   wilthja'i
             
N Pl.   wiltha'i   wilthja   wilthjo:s
A   wilthjans   wilthja   wilthjo:s
G   wilthja'ize:   wilthja'ize:   wilthja'izo:
D   wilthja'im   wilthja'im   wilthja'im
             

The wa-stem adjectives are sparsely attested. The adjective triggws 'true' serves to illustrate the attested forms.

Strong wa-Stem   Masculine   Neuter   Feminine
             
N Sg.   triggws   triggw    
A   *triggwana   *triggw    
G   *triggws   triggws, triggwis    
D   *triggwamma   *triggwamma    
             
N Pl.   triggwa'i       triggwo:s
A   *triggwans        
G   *triggwa'ize:   *triggwa'ize:   *triggwa'ize:
D   *triggwa'im   *triggwa'im   triggwa'im
             

Only a handful of wa-stem adjectives remain in the surviving Gothic texts. The adjective lasiws 'weak' occurs only in the nominative singular maculine. Other wa-stems such as *qius 'alive', *fa'us 'little', *usska'us 'vigilant' do not occur in the nominative singular masculine at all.

13.2. i-Stems

The strong forms of the i-stem adjectives differ from the ja-stem forms only in the nominative singular of all genders, the accusative singular neuter, and the genitive singular masculine and neuter. The adjective hra'ins 'clean' serves to illustrate the paradigm. The forms differing from the ja-stems are in boldface.

Strong i-Stem   Masculine   Neuter   Feminine
             
N Sg.   hra'ins   hra'in   hra'ins
A   hra'injana   hra'in   hra'inja
G   hra'inis   hra'inis   *hra'inja'izo:s
D   hra'injamma   hra'injamma   hra'inja'i
             
N Pl.   hra'inja'i   hra'inja   hra'injo:s
A   hra'injans   hra'inja   hra'injo:s
G   hra'inja'ize:   hra'inja'ize:   hra'inja'izo:
D   hra'inja'im   hra'inja'im   hra'inja'im
             

The following adjectives decline similarly: anala'ugns 'hidden'; anasiuns 'visible'; andane:ms 'pleasant'; a'uths 'desert'; bru:ks 'useful'; gafa'urs 'well-behaved'; gama'ins 'common'; se:ls 'kind'; ska'uns 'beautiful'; skeirs 'clear'; suts 'sweet'.

13.3. u-Stems

The u-stem adjectives also employ for the most part the endings of the ja-stem declension. Only the nominative singular of all genders and the accusative singular neuter show different forms, following the declensions of sunus 'son', feminine handus 'hand', and neuter fai'hu 'cattle' (see Section 7.2). Though the genitive singular likely followed the form of u-stem nouns, no instances survive; likewise no dative singular forms are attested, nor nominative and accusative plural neuter. The adjective hardus 'hard' serves to illustrate the paradigm. Forms differing from the ja-stems are boldface.

Strong u-Stem   Masculine   Neuter   Feminine
             
N Sg.   hardus   hardu, hardjata   hardus
A   hardjana   hardu, hardjata   hardja
G            
D            
             
N Pl.   hardja'i       hardjo:s
A   hardjans       hardjo:s
G   hardja'ize:   hardja'ize:   hardja'izo:
D   hardja'im   hardja'im   hardja'im
             

The following adjectives decline similarly: aggwus 'narrow'; aglus 'difficult'; hnasqus 'soft'; kau'rus 'heavy'; manwus 'ready'; qai'rrus 'gentle'; seithus 'late'; tulgus 'steadfast'; twalibwintrus 'twelve years old'; thau'rsus 'withered'; thlaqus 'soft'.

13.4. Possessive Adjectives

The possessive adjectives decline exclusively as strong adjectives (there are no weak forms of possessives). These forms are built from the genitive forms of the respective pronouns, with the addition of adjectival endings, e.g. ik 'I', with G sg. meina, gives adjectival *meina-s > meins 'my' (N. sg. masc.). The forms of meins 'my, mine' serve to illustrate the paradigm.

Possessive   Masculine   Neuter   Feminine
             
N Sg.   meins   mein, meinata   meina
A   meinana   mein, meinata   meina
G   meinis   meinis   meina'izo:s
D   meinamma   meinamma   meina'i
             
N Pl.   meina'i   meina   meino:s
A   meinans   meina   meino:s
G   meina'ize:   meina'ize:   meina'izo:
D   meina'im   meina'im   meina'im
             

The second person builds a possessive adjective theins, and the reflexive pronoun has possessive *seins (as it points back to the subject of the clause, only oblique forms occur). The dual and plural forms of the personal pronouns also build possessives:

Person   Stem   Masculine   Neuter   Feminine
                 
1 Sg.   meina-   meins   mein, meinata   meina
2   theina-   theins   thein, theinata   theina
refl. (Acc.)   seina-   seinana   sein, seinata   seina
                 
1 Du.   *ugkara-   ugkar   ugkar   ugkara
2   igqara-   igqar   igqar   igqara
-                
                 
1 Pl.   unsara-   unsar   unsar   unsara
2   izwara-   izwar   izwar   izwara
-                
                 

The reflexive possessive adjective *seins serves as a reflexive for any number, just like the pronoun itself. The dual possessive *unqar 'of us two' does not occur. Note that final -s (-z) drops after a short vowel followed by consonantal -r (cf. Section 6.2.2), hence the nominative forms of the dual and plural possessives lack final -s. The neuter nominative and accusative singular of the dual and plural possessives do not show the ending -ata. In all other forms, *ugkara- 'of us two', igqara- 'of you two', unsara- 'of us (all), our, ours' and izwara- 'of you (all), your, yours' follow the paradigm of meins.

The third person pronouns have no corresponding possessive adjectives, using simply the genitive forms of the personal pronoun (singular is, is, izo:s; plural ize:, *ize:, izo:) or of the demonstrative pronoun (singular this, this, thizo:s; plural thize:, thize:, thizo:).

14. Past Participle

Like Modern English, Gothic has a past participle whose formation depends on whether the verb is strong or weak. Unlike, e.g., classical Greek or Sanskrit, which have morphologically distinct past active and past passive participles, Gothic makes no morphological distinction between active and passive participles. One and the same formation generally has different interpretations based on the transitivity of the root: the past participle of transitive verbs is construed as passive (e.g. 'having been eaten'), while the past participle of intransitive verbs is construed as active (e.g. 'having gone').

14.1. Formation

The formation of past participles in Gothic parallels that of Modern English, as well as the other Germanic languages. There are two types of past participle, reflecting the distinction between strong and weak verbs. Note there is no correlation between the terms 'strong' and 'weak' as applied to verbs, and the same terms as applied to adjective endings. A strong verb forms a past participle, which may be declined as either a strong or a weak adjective; likewise a weak verb's past participle may take either weak or strong adjectival endings. The weak adjective endings are treated in Section 17.1.

Strong verbs form the past participle by adding the suffix -an to the verbal stem, which in general displays ablaut. Compare Modern English eat-en. Strong a-stem or weak adjective endings are then added to the -an suffix. Because of the relative unpredictability of ablaut, the past participle is typically given as one of the principal parts. For example, the strong class IVa verb qiman 'come' has principal parts qiman, qam, qe:mun, qumans. The past participle stem is thus quman-. The nominative singular forms for strong and weak declension of quman- are as follows.

Strong Vb. PPl.   Masculine   Neuter   Feminine
             
Strong   qumans   quman, qumanata   qumana
Weak   qumana   qumano:   qumano:
             

Weak verbs form the past participle by means of a dental suffix -th, as one finds in e.g. Modern English ask-ed. This is added to the stem, sometimes with an intervening vowel, and adjective endings are added to this. The intervening vowel depends on weak verb class. Consider the following exemplars.

Class   Past Ptcpl. (Str. N Sg. Masc.)   Infinitive   Meaning
             
i   nas-i-ths   nas-jan   'save'
ii   salb-o:-ths   salb-o:n   'anoint'
iii   hab-a'i-ths   hab-an   'have'
iv       full-nan   'become full'
             

No verbs of the weak class iv leave any past participle forms in the records. Though it is often remarked in grammars that this class contains only intransitive verbs, this does not explain a priori the absence of such participles, as the example qumans shows above (see also thau'rsjan 'thirst' below). A small number of verbs of the weak class i add the dental suffix with no intervening vowel. The most common are listed below.

Infinitive   Meaning   Preterite (1/3 Sg.)   Past Ptcpl. (Str. N Sg. Masc.)
             
briggan   'bring'   bra:hta   *bra:hts
bru:kjan   'use'   bru:hta   *bru:hts
bugjan   'buy'   bau'hta   bau'hts
thagkjan   'think'   tha:hta   tha:hts
thugkjan   'seem'   thu:hta   thu:hts
wau'rkjan   'work'   wau'rhta   wau'rhts
             

As with the participles of strong verbs, those of weak verbs decline as either strong a-stem or weak adjectives as the context demands. The nominative singular forms for strong and weak declension of quman- are as follows.

Weak Vb. PPl.   Masculine   Neuter   Feminine
             
Strong   nasiths   nasith, nasidata   nasida
Weak   nasida   nasido:   nasido:
             

Note the the change of -th- to -d- between vowels.

14.2. Past Participle Usage

As mentioned above, the past participle of transitive verbs is construed as passive in sense; the past participle of intransitive verbs is construed as active. For example, qiman 'to come' (intransitive) vs. qumans 'come' (active -- cf. Shakespearean 'I am come' = 'I have arrived'), but bai'ran 'to bear' (transitive) vs. bau'rans 'borne' (passive); likewise nasjan 'to save' (transitive) vs. nasiths 'saved' (passive), but thau'rsjan 'thirst' (intransitive) vs. af-thau'rsiths '(having) thirsted, thirsty' (active). Even this distinction, though, is not absolute. For example, the transitive verb drigkan 'to drink' has a past participle with active sense, drunkans 'having drunk', hence simply 'drunk': drunkans ist in Col. 11.21 translates Greek methu'ei 'is intoxicated'.

The past participle frequently appears in the dative in an absolute contruction, much as Old Church Slavonic dative, Latin ablative, Greek genitive, and Sanskrit locative. Such constructions convey an event grammatically separate (hence 'absolute') from the main clause. For example, jah usleithandin Ie:sua in skipa, gaqe:mun sik manageins filu du imma 'and Jesus having passed over in the ship, there came together to him a great multitude'; dalath than atgaggandin imma af fai'rgunja, la'istide:dun afar imma iumjo:ns manago:s 'then having come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed after him'. The nominative is found on rare occasions in such absolute constructions: wau'rthans dags gatils '(and) a fitting day being come'.

The past participle is sometimes used with the suppletive verb wisan 'to be' or with wai'rthan 'to become' to form a periphrastic passive. For example, miththanei wrohiths was 'when he was accused' (Matthew 27.12); afar thatei atgibans warth Iohannes 'after that John was put...' (Mark 1.14); skal sunus mans uskusans wai'rthan 'the son of man shall be rejected' (Mark 8.31).

15. Prepositions

Each Gothic preposition governs objects in one or more of the oblique cases. The case governed is a property of the preposition: each preposition governs only a specific case or cases. If a preposition governs more than one case, its meaning may or may not change depending on the case employed. Generally the genitive is used after a preposition to denote source, cause, or instrument. The dative commonly denotes position in space or time without motion, or it may denote source, cause, or instrument. The accusative is used after a preposition to denote motion to or through space or time, or to denote a point of time within a certain period, opposition, or correspondence. A few adverbs have prepositional force when combined with a noun in the genitive. The following chart lists the primary Gothic prepositions, together with the cases they govern and the associated meanings.

Preposition   Case   Meaning
         
af   dat.   of, from
         
afar   acc.   after, according to
    dat.   after, according to
         
ana   acc.   on, upon
    dat.   on, upon
         
and   acc.   along, through, over
         
andwai'rthis   gen.   opposite
         
alja   dat.   except
         
and   acc.   along, throughout, towards
         
at   acc.   at, by, to
    dat.   at, by, to
         
bi   acc.   by, about, around, against
    dat.   by, about, around, against
         
du   dat.   to
         
fai'rra   gen.   far from
         
fau'r   acc.   for, before
         
fau'ra   dat.   before
         
fram   dat.   from
         
hindana   gen.   from beyond
         
hindar   acc.   behind, beyond, among
    dat.   behind, beyond, among
         
in   acc.   in, into, towards
    dat.   in, into, among
    gen.   on, on account of
         
innana   gen.   from within
         
inuh   acc.   without
         
mith   dat.   with
         
ne:hwa   dat.   nigh to, near
         
thai'rh   acc.   through, by
         
uf   acc.   under
    dat.   under
         
ufar   acc.   over, above
    dat.   over, above
         
ufaro:   dat.   over
    gen.   over
         
und   acc.   until, up to
    dat.   for
         
undar   acc.   under
         
undaro:   dat.   under
         
us   dat.   out, out of
         
utana   gen.   from outside, up to
         
utathro:   gen.   from outside
         
withra   acc.   against