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Old Church Slavonic Online

Lesson 9

Todd B. Krause and Jonathan Slocum

One popular type of eccesiastical literature was the Saint's Life. This was a story focusing on the life of a particular saint, giving biographical information useful for presenting an example of the righteous manner of living. Such Lives are often found in what is termed a menology, a collection of Saints' Lives and homilies appropriate for celebration of Church festivals.

Reading and Textual Analysis

Among the earliest of the Saints' Lives is that of Good King Wencelaus. This text is of paramount importance for two major reasons. Firstly, at a cultural level this text shows the emergence of a true Slavonic spiritual identity. No longer is the ecclesiastical corpus relegated to stories from neighboring cultures. With the story of Wencelaus, who is both king and saint, the Slavonic culture asserts its legitimacy in contradistinction to the territorial influence of both the Holy Roman Empire and Byzantium. Second, on a linguistic level the native Slavic subject matter ensures that there is no Greek or Latin original to be sought. The linguist may therefore use this as a starting point to assess native OCS syntax. Syntactical studies are on shaky ground when taking Gospel translations as source material; these have a tendency to follow Greek syntax exceptionally closely. However, the story of Good King Wencelaus provides a sample of natively-generated narrative, and is therefore a useful benchmark by which to test conceptions of OCS syntax.

Below is an extract from the beginning of the Life of Good King Wenceslaus.

se nyně sŭbystŭ sę proročĭskoje slovo, ježe glagola samŭ gospodĭ našĭ Isusŭ Xrĭstŭ |

  • se -- interjection; <se> lo, behold -- behold
  • nyně -- adverb; <nyně> now -- now
  • sŭbystŭ sę -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist reflexive of <sŭbyti, -bǫdǫ, -bǫdeši> come about, happen -- was fulfilled
  • proročĭskoje -- adjective; nominative singular neuter of <proročĭskŭ> prophetic -- prophetic
  • slovo -- noun, neuter; nominative singular of <slovo> word -- word
  • ježe -- relative pronoun; accusative singular neuter of <iže> who, which -- which
  • glagola -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <glagolati, -l'jǫ, -l'ješi> say, speak -- spoke
  • samŭ -- adjective; nominative singular masculine of <samŭ> self, oneself -- himself
  • gospodĭ -- noun, masculine; nominative singular of <gospodĭ> lord, master -- Lord
  • našĭ -- possessive adjective; nominative singular masculine of <našĭ> our, of us -- our
  • Isusŭ -- proper noun, masculine; nominative singular of <Iisusŭ> Jesus -- Jesus
  • Xrĭstŭ -- proper noun, masculine; nominative singular of <Xrĭstŭ> Christ -- Christ

Bǫdetŭ bo, reče, vŭ poslědĭn'jęję dĭni, jęže mĭnimŭ nyně sǫštę, vŭstanetŭ bratrŭ na bratra svojego i synŭ na otĭcĭ svoi, vradzi člověku domaši jego |

  • bǫdetŭ -- verb; 3rd person singular present of <byti, bǫdǫ, bǫdeši> be, become -- it will happen
  • bo -- conjunction; <bo> for -- for
  • reče -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <rešti, rekǫ, rečeši> say, tell -- he said
  • -- preposition; <> in, into -- in
  • poslědĭn'jęję -- adjective; accusative plural masculine of <poslědĭnĭ> last, following, latter -- the final
  • dĭni -- noun, masculine; accusative plural of <dĭnĭ> day -- days
  • jęže -- relative pronoun; accusative plural masculine of <iže> who, which -- which
  • mĭnimŭ -- verb; 1st person plural present of <mĭněti, mĭnjǫ, mĭniši> believe, think -- we believe
  • nyně -- adverb; <nyně> now -- now
  • sǫštę -- verb; present active participle; accusative plural masculine of <jes-, jesmĭ, jesi> be -- to be
  • vŭstanetŭ -- verb; 3rd person singular present of <vŭstati, -stanǫ, -staneši> stand up, break out -- shall rise
  • bratrŭ -- noun, masculine; nominative singular of <bratrŭ, bratŭ> brother -- brother
  • na -- preposition; <na> in, on; at, against; for -- against
  • bratra -- noun, masculine; genitive singular of <bratrŭ, bratŭ> brother -- brother
  • svojego -- reflexive adjective; genitive singular masculine of <svoi, svoe, svoja> own, one's own -- his own
  • i -- conjunction; <i> and -- and
  • synŭ -- noun, masculine; nominative singular of <synŭ> son -- son
  • na -- preposition; <na> in, on; at, against; for -- against
  • otĭcĭ -- noun, masculine; accusative singular of <otĭcĭ> father -- father
  • svoi -- reflexive adjective; accusative singular masculine of <svoi, svoe, svoja> own, one's own -- his
  • vradzi -- noun, masculine; nominative plural of <vragŭ> enemy -- foes
  • člověku -- noun, masculine; dative singular of <člověkŭ> man, human -- a man's
  • domaši -- adjective; nominative plural masculine of <domašĭnĭ> belonging to the household, domestic -- (shall be) they of... own household # #cf. Matt. 10:36
  • jego -- pronoun; genitive singular masculine of <*i> he -- his

Člověci bo sebě bǫdǫtŭ nemili, i vŭzdastŭ imŭ Bogŭ po dělomŭ ixŭ |

  • člověci -- noun, masculine; nominative plural of <člověkŭ> man, human -- men
  • bo -- conjunction; <bo> for -- for
  • sebě -- reflexive pronoun; dative singular of <sebe> self -- to one another
  • bǫdǫtŭ -- verb; 3rd person plural present of <byti, bǫdǫ, bǫdeši> be, become -- will be
  • nemili -- adjective; nominative plural masculine of <nemilŭ> unpitying -- unpitying
  • i -- conjunction; <i> and -- and
  • vŭzdastŭ -- verb; 3rd person singular present of <vŭzdati, -damĭ, -dasi> give back, give out, dispense -- will dispense
  • imŭ -- pronoun; dative plural masculine of <*i> he -- ...
  • Bogŭ -- noun, masculine; nominative singular of <bogŭ> god -- God
  • po -- preposition; <po> after; according to -- according to
  • dělomŭ -- noun, neuter; dative plural of <dělo> work, doing, deed -- deeds
  • ixŭ -- pronoun; genitive plural masculine of <*i> he -- their

Bystŭ že kŭnędzĭ eterŭ vŭ Česěxŭ imenĭmĭ Bratislavŭ, žena že jego naricajema Dragomira |

  • bystŭ -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <byti, bǫdǫ, bǫdeši> be, become -- there was
  • že -- conjunction; <že> and, but -- but
  • kŭnędzĭ -- noun, masculine; nominative singular of <kŭnędzĭ> prince -- prince
  • eterŭ -- adjective; nominative singular masculine of <eterŭ> one, a certain -- a certain
  • -- preposition; <> in, into -- in
  • Česěxŭ -- proper noun, masculine; locative plural of <Česi> (plural) Czech Lands, Bohemia -- the Czech Lands
  • imenĭmĭ -- noun, neuter; instrumental singular of <imę> name -- by name
  • Bratislavŭ -- proper noun, masculine; nominative singular of <Bratislavŭ> Bratislav -- Bratislav
  • žena -- noun, feminine; nominative singular of <žena> woman, wife -- wife
  • že -- conjunction; <že> and, but -- and
  • jego -- pronoun; genitive singular masculine of <*i> he -- his
  • naricajema -- verb; present passive participle; nominative singular feminine of <naricati, -cajǫ, -caješi> call, name -- (was) called
  • Dragomira -- proper noun, feminine; nominative singular of <Dragomira> Dragomira -- Dragomira

I roždĭša synŭ svoi prĭvěnĭcĭ i krĭstiste i i narěste imę jemu Vęšteslavŭ |

  • i -- conjunction; <i> and -- and
  • roždĭša -- verb; past active participle; nominative dual masculine of <roditi, -ždǫ, -diši> bear, produce -- having produced
  • synŭ -- noun, masculine; accusative singular of <synŭ> son -- son
  • svoi -- possessive adjective; accusative singular masculine of <svoi, svoe, svoja> own, one's own -- their
  • prĭvěnĭcĭ -- adjective; accusative singular masculine of <prĭvěnĭcĭ> first-born -- first-born
  • i -- conjunction; <i> and -- ...
  • krĭstiste -- verb; 3rd person dual aorist of <krĭstiti, -štǫ, -stiši> christen, baptize -- they christened
  • i -- pronoun; accusative singular masculine of <*i> he -- him
  • i -- conjunction; <i> and -- and
  • narěste -- verb; 3rd person dual aorist of <narešti, -rekǫ, -rečeši> call, name -- gave
  • imę -- noun, neuter; accusative singular of <imę> name -- the name
  • jemu -- pronoun; dative singular masculine of <*i> he -- him
  • Vęšteslavŭ -- proper noun, masculine; accusative singular of <Vęšteslavŭ> Venceslav, Wenceslaus -- Venceslav

Vŭzdrastŭšu že jemu jako postrišti i, prizŭva Bratislavŭ, otĭcĭ jego, na postriženĭje biskupa etera, imenĭmĭ Notara, i sĭ kliriky jego |

  • vŭzdrastŭšu -- verb; past active participle; dative singular masculine of <vŭzdrastiti, -štǫ, -stiši> grow, increase -- as... grew (so big)
  • že -- conjunction; <že> and, but -- and
  • jemu -- pronoun; dative singular masculine of <*i> he -- he
  • jako -- conjunction; <jako> as, when; in order to; that; because; (introduces quotation) -- as
  • postrišti -- verb; infinitive of <postrišti, -strigǫ, -strižeši> tonsure -- to tonsure
  • i -- pronoun; accusative singular masculine of <*i> he -- him
  • prizŭva -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <prizŭvati, -zovǫ, -zoveši> call, summon -- invited
  • Bratislavŭ -- proper noun, masculine; nominative singular of <Bratislavŭ> Bratislav -- Bratislav
  • otĭcĭ -- noun, masculine; nominative singular of <otĭcĭ> father -- father
  • jego -- pronoun; genitive singular masculine of <*i> he -- his
  • na -- preposition; <na> in, on; at, against; for -- to
  • postriženĭje -- noun, neuter; accusative singular of <postriženĭje> tonsure, a tonsuring, cutting -- tonsure
  • biskupa -- noun, masculine; genitive singular of <biskupŭ> bishop -- bishop
  • etera -- adjective; genitive singular masculine of <eterŭ> one, a certain -- a certain
  • imenĭmĭ -- noun, neuter; instrumental singular of <imę> name -- by name
  • Notara -- proper noun, masculine; genitive singular of <Notarĭ> Notarius, Notar -- Notar
  • i -- conjunction; <i> and -- and
  • -- preposition; <> with -- with (him)
  • kliriky -- noun, masculine; instrumental plural of <klirikŭ> cleric, priest -- clerics # #this is the actual object of the preposition
  • jego -- pronoun; genitive singular masculine of <*i> he -- his

Vŭspěvŭšemŭ že imŭ mĭšǫ jemu vŭ crĭkŭvi svętyję Marĭję, vŭzĭmŭ biskupŭ otroka, postavi i na krilě stepenĭnějemĭ prědŭ oltar'emĭ i blagoslovi i reky |

  • vŭspěvŭšemŭ -- verb; past active participle; dative plural masculine of <vŭspěvati, -vajǫ, -vaěši> celebrate, praise -- when... celebrated
  • že -- conjunction; <že> and, but -- and
  • imŭ -- pronoun; dative plural masculine of <*i> he -- they
  • mĭšǫ -- noun, feminine; accusative singular of <mĭša> (holy) mass -- the mass
  • jemu -- pronoun; dative singular masculine of <*i> he -- for him
  • -- preposition; <> in, into -- in
  • crĭkŭvi -- noun, feminine; locative singular of <crĭky> church, temple -- the Church
  • svętyję -- adjective; genitive singular feminine of <svętŭ> holy, blessed -- of the Holy
  • Marĭję -- proper noun, feminine; genitive singular of <Marĭja> Maria, Mary -- Maria
  • vŭzĭmŭ -- verb; past active participle; nominative singular masculine of <vŭzĭmati, -eml'jǫ, -eml'ješi> take, take up -- took up
  • biskupŭ -- noun, masculine; nominative singular of <biskupŭ> bishop -- the bishop
  • otroka -- noun, masculine; genitive singular of <otrokŭ> boy, servant -- the boy
  • postavi -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <postaviti, -vl'jǫ, -viši> establish, place, set -- placed
  • i -- pronoun; accusative singular masculine of <*i> he -- him
  • na -- preposition; <na> in, on; at, against; for -- on
  • krilě -- noun, neuter; locative singular of <krilo> wing; pinnacle -- the top
  • stepenĭnějemĭ -- adjective; locative singular neuter of <stepenĭnŭ> of a step, grade, level -- step
  • prědŭ -- preposition; <prědŭ> before, in front of -- before
  • oltar'emĭ -- noun, masculine; instrumental singular of <olŭtarĭ> altar -- the altar
  • i -- conjunction; <i> and -- and
  • blagoslovi -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <blagosloviti, -vljǫ, -viši> bless -- blessed
  • i -- pronoun; accusative singular masculine of <*i> he -- him
  • reky -- verb; present active participle; nominative singular masculine of <rešti, rekǫ, rečeši> say, tell -- saying

Gospodi Bože, Isu Xrĭste, blagoslovi otroka sego, jakože blagoslovilŭ jesi vĭsę pravĭdĭniky tvoję |

  • gospodi -- noun, masculine; vocative singular of <gospodĭ> lord, master -- Lord
  • Bože -- noun, masculine; vocative singular of <bogŭ> god -- God
  • Isu -- proper noun, masculine; vocative singular of <Iisusŭ> Jesus -- Jesus
  • Xrĭste -- proper noun, masculine; vocative singular of <Xrĭstŭ> Christ -- Christ
  • blagoslovi -- verb; 2nd person singular imperative of <blagosloviti, -vljǫ, -viši> bless -- bless
  • otroka -- noun, masculine; genitive singular of <otrokŭ> boy, servant -- boy
  • sego -- demonstrative adjective; genitive singular masculine of <> this -- this
  • jakože -- conjunction; <jakože> as, like, than, so as to -- as
  • blagoslovilŭ -- verb; past active participle; nominative singular masculine of <blagosloviti, -vljǫ, -viši> bless -- blessed
  • jesi -- verb; 2nd person singular present of <jes-, jesmĭ, jesi> be -- you have
  • vĭsę -- adjective; accusative plural masculine of <vĭsĭ> all, every; whole -- all
  • pravĭdĭniky -- noun, masculine; accusative plural of <pravĭdĭnikŭ> just person -- who are just
  • tvoję -- possessive adjective; accusative plural masculine of <tvoi> your, thy -- yours

Sice že sŭ blagoslovl'enĭjemĭ postriženŭ bystŭ |

  • sice -- adverb; <sice> thus, so -- so
  • že -- conjunction; <že> and, but -- and
  • -- preposition; <> with -- with
  • blagoslovl'enĭjemĭ -- noun, neuter; instrumental singular of <blagoslovl'enĭje> blessing -- a blessing
  • postriženŭ -- verb; past passive participle; nominative singular masculine of <postrišti, -strigǫ, -strižeši> tonsure -- tonsured
  • bystŭ -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <byti, bǫdǫ, bǫdeši> be, become -- he was

Těmĭže mĭnimŭ, jako blagoslovl'enĭjemĭ biskupa togo pravĭdĭnajego i molitvami jego načętŭ otrokŭ rasti, blagodětĭjǫ božĭjejǫ xranimŭ |

  • těmĭže -- conjunction; <těmĭže> thereby, therefore, through this -- and by this
  • mĭnimŭ -- verb; 1st person plural present of <mĭněti, mĭnjǫ, mĭniši> believe, think -- we believe
  • jako -- conjunction; <jako> as, when; in order to; that; because; (introduces quotation) -- that
  • blagoslovl'enĭjemĭ -- noun, neuter; instrumental singular of <blagoslovl'enĭje> blessing -- with the blessing
  • biskupa -- noun, masculine; genitive singular of <biskupŭ> bishop -- bishop
  • togo -- demonstrative adjective; genitive singular masculine of <> that, that one -- of that
  • pravĭdĭnajego -- adjective; genitive singular masculine of <pravĭdĭnŭ> just, righteous -- just
  • i -- conjunction; <i> and -- and
  • molitvami -- noun, feminine; instrumental plural of <molitva> prayer -- by... prayers
  • jego -- pronoun; genitive singular masculine of <*i> he -- his
  • načętŭ -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <načęti, -čĭnǫ, -čieši> begin -- began
  • otrokŭ -- noun, masculine; nominative singular of <otrokŭ> boy, servant -- the boy
  • rasti -- verb; infinitive of <rasti, rastǫ, rasteši> grow -- to grow
  • blagodětĭjǫ -- noun, feminine; instrumental singular of <blagodětĭ> gift, grace, joy -- grace
  • božĭjejǫ -- adjective; instrumental singular feminine of <božĭi> divine, of god, god's -- by God's
  • xranimŭ -- verb; present passive participle; nominative singular masculine of <xraniti, -nǫ, -niši> protect, guard -- protected

Navyče že kŭnigy slověnĭskyję i latinĭskyję dobrě |

  • navyče -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <navyknǫti, -nǫ, -neši> learn -- he learned
  • že -- conjunction; <že> and, but -- ...
  • kŭnigy -- noun, feminine; accusative plural of <kŭniga> letter, writing -- letters
  • slověnĭskyję -- adjective; accusative plural feminine of <slověnĭskŭ> Slavonic, Slavic -- the Slavonic
  • i -- conjunction; <i> and -- and
  • latinĭskyję -- adjective; accusative plural feminine of <latinĭskŭ> Latin, of Latin -- Latin
  • dobrě -- adverb; <dobrě> good, well -- well

Umĭrŭšu že otĭcu jego, Bratislavu, postavišę Česi kŭnęza Vęšteslava na stolě dědĭn'i |

  • umĭrŭšu -- verb; past active participle; dative singular masculine of <umrěti, -rǫ, -reši> die -- when... died
  • že -- conjunction; <že> and, but -- and
  • otĭcu -- noun, masculine; dative singular of <otĭcĭ> father -- father
  • jego -- pronoun; genitive singular masculine of <*i> he -- his
  • Bratislavu -- proper noun, masculine; dative singular of <Bratislavŭ> Bratislav -- Bratislav
  • postavišę -- verb; 3rd person plural aorist of <postaviti, -vl'jǫ, -viši> establish, place, set -- established
  • Česi -- adjective used as substantive; nominative plural masculine of <Čexŭ> Czech, Bohemian -- the Czechs
  • kŭnęza -- noun, masculine; genitive singular of <kŭnęzĭ> prince -- (as) prince
  • Vęšteslava -- proper noun, masculine; genitive singular of <Vęšteslavŭ> Venceslav, Wenceslaus -- Venceslav
  • na -- preposition; <na> in, on; at, against; for -- upon
  • stolě -- noun, masculine; locative singular of <stolŭ> seat, throne -- throne
  • dědĭn'i -- adjective; locative singular masculine of <dědĭnĭ> of grandfather, grandfather's -- (his) grandfather's

Boleslavŭ že, bratrŭ jego, rastěaše podŭ n'imĭ; běašete že oba ješte mala |

  • Boleslavŭ -- proper noun, masculine; nominative singular of <Boleslavŭ> Boleslav -- Boleslav
  • že -- conjunction; <že> and, but -- and
  • bratrŭ -- noun, masculine; nominative singular of <bratrŭ, bratŭ> brother -- brother
  • jego -- pronoun; genitive singular masculine of <*i> he -- his
  • rastěaše -- verb; 3rd person singular imperfect of <rasti, rastǫ, rasteši> grow -- grew
  • podŭ -- preposition; <podŭ> under, underneath -- alongside
  • n'imĭ -- pronoun; instrumental singular masculine of <*i> he -- him
  • běašete -- verb; 3rd person dual imperfect of <byti, bǫdǫ, bǫdeši> be, become -- were
  • že -- conjunction; <že> and, but -- ...
  • oba -- adjective; nominative dual masculine of <oba, obě, obě> both -- both
  • ješte -- adverb; <ješte> yet, still -- still
  • mala -- adjective; nominative dual masculine of <malŭ> small, young -- young

Nŭ mati jeju Dragomira utvrĭdi zeml'jǫ, i ljudi stroi, don'ĭdeže vŭzdraste Vęšteslavŭ, i vŭzdrastŭ, načę samŭ stroiti ljudi svoję |

  • -- conjunction; <> but -- but
  • mati -- noun, feminine; nominative singular of <mati> mother -- mother
  • jeju -- pronoun; genitive dual masculine of <*i> he -- their
  • Dragomira -- proper noun, feminine; nominative singular of <Dragomira> Dragomira -- Dragomira
  • utvrĭdi -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <utvrĭditi, -ždǫ, -diši> stabilize, fortify, regulate -- ruled
  • zeml'jǫ -- noun, feminine; accusative singular of <zeml'ja> earth, land -- the land
  • i -- conjunction; <i> and -- and
  • ljudi -- noun, masculine; accusative plural of <ljudŭ> people -- the people
  • stroi -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <stroiti, -ojǫ, -oiši> prepare, arrange -- administered to
  • don'ĭdeže -- adverb; <don'ĭdeže> while, as long as -- while
  • vŭzdraste -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <vŭzdrasti, -stǫ, -steši> be nourished, grow -- was growing up
  • Vęšteslavŭ -- proper noun, masculine; nominative singular of <Vęšteslavŭ> Venceslav, Wenceslaus -- Venceslav
  • i -- conjunction; <i> and -- and
  • vŭzdrastŭ -- verb; past passive participle; nominative singular masculine of <vŭzdrasti, -stǫ, -steši> be nourished, grow -- when he was grown
  • načę -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <načęti, -čĭnǫ, -čĭneši> begin -- he began
  • samŭ -- adjective; nominative singular masculine of <samŭ> self, oneself -- himself
  • stroiti -- verb; infinitive of <stroiti, -ojǫ, -oiši> prepare, arrange -- to administer to
  • ljudi -- noun, masculine; accusative plural of <ljudŭ> people -- people
  • svoję -- reflexive adjective; accusative plural masculine of <svoi, svoe, svoja> own, one's own -- his

Blagodětĭjǫ že božĭjejǫ vŭ istinǫ Vęšteslavŭ kŭnęzĭ ne tŭkŭmo kŭnigy navyče dobrě, nŭ i věrojǫ sŭvrĭšenŭ bě |

  • blagodětĭjǫ -- noun, feminine; instrumental singular of <blagodětĭ> gift, grace, joy -- by the grace
  • že -- conjunction; <že> and, but -- but
  • božĭjejǫ -- possessive adjective; instrumental singular feminine of <božĭi> divine, of god, god's -- of God
  • -- preposition; <> in, into -- ...
  • istinǫ -- noun, feminine; accusative singular of <istina> truth, reality -- truly
  • Vęšteslavŭ -- proper noun, masculine; nominative singular of <Vęšteslavŭ> Venceslav, Wenceslaus -- Venceslav
  • kŭnęzĭ -- noun, masculine; nominative singular of <kŭnęzĭ> prince -- prince
  • ne -- particle; <ne> not -- not
  • tŭkŭmo -- adverb; <tŭkŭmo> only, alone -- only
  • kŭnigy -- noun, feminine; accusative plural of <kŭniga> letter, writing -- letters
  • navyče -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <navyknǫti, -nǫ, -neši> learn -- learned
  • dobrě -- adverb; <dobrě> good, well -- well
  • -- conjunction; <> but -- but
  • i -- conjunction; <i> and -- also
  • věrojǫ -- noun, feminine; instrumental singular of <věra> faith, belief -- by faith
  • sŭvrĭšenŭ -- verb; past passive participle; nominative singular masculine of <sŭvrĭšiti, -šǫ, -šiši> prepare, perfect, complete -- filled
  • -- verb; 3rd person singular imperfect of <byti, bǫdǫ, bǫdeši> be, become -- was

Vĭsěmŭ že ništiimŭ dobra tvorjaaše, nagyję oděvaaše, lačǫštęję pitěaše, stranĭnyję prijeml'jaaše po evang'elĭsku glasu |

  • vĭsěmŭ -- adjective; dative plural masculine of <vĭsĭ> all, every; whole -- among all
  • že -- conjunction; <že> and, but -- ...
  • ništiimŭ -- adjective used as substantive; dative plural masculine of <ništĭ, nište, ništa> poor, beggarly -- (the) poor
  • dobra -- adjective used as substantive; accusative plural neuter of <dobrŭ> good -- good (deeds)
  • tvorjaaše -- verb; 3rd person singular imperfect of <tvoriti, -rjǫ, -riši> do, make -- he would perform
  • nagyję -- adjective used as substantive; accusative plural masculine of <nagŭ> naked -- the naked
  • oděvaaše -- verb; 3rd person singular imperfect of <oděvati, -vajǫ, -vaješi> clothe -- (would) clothe
  • lačǫštęję -- adjective used as substantive, present active participle; accusative plural masculine of <lakati, -čǫ, -češi> hunger, be hungry -- the hungry
  • pitěaše -- verb; 3rd person singular imperfect of <pitěti, -ějǫ, -ěješi> nourish -- (would) nourish
  • stranĭnyję -- adjective used as substantive; accusative plural masculine of <stranĭnŭ> strange, foreign -- strangers
  • prijeml'jaaše -- verb; 3rd person singular imperfect of <priimati, -jeml'jǫ, -jeml'ješi> take in -- (would) take in
  • po -- preposition; <po> after; according to -- according to
  • evang'elĭsku -- adjective; dative singular masculine of <evang'elĭskŭ> of the evangel, evangelic -- of the evangel
  • glasu -- noun, masculine; dative singular of <glasŭ> voice, sound, word -- the word

Vĭdovicĭ že obiděti ne daděaše, ljudi vĭsę, ubogyję i bogatyję, milovaaše, Bogu rabotajǫštiimŭ služaaše, crĭkŭvi mŭnogyję zlatomĭ krašaaše |

  • vĭdovicĭ -- noun, feminine; accusative singular of <vĭdovicĭ> widow -- a widow
  • že -- conjunction; <že> and, but -- ...
  • obiděti -- verb; infinitive of <obiděti, -ždǫ, -diši> do harm to, disrespect, be contemptuous of -- to be disgraced
  • ne -- particle; <ne> not -- not
  • daděaše -- verb; 3rd person singular imperfect of <dati, damĭ, dasi> give -- he would... permit
  • ljudi -- noun, masculine; accusative plural of <ljudŭ> people -- people
  • vĭsę -- adjective; accusative plural masculine of <vĭsĭ> all, every; whole -- all
  • ubogyję -- adjective; accusative plural masculine of <ubogŭ> not rich, poor -- poor
  • i -- conjunction; <i> and -- or
  • bogatyję -- adjective; accusative plural masculine of <bogatŭ> rich -- rich
  • milovaaše -- verb; 3rd person singular imperfect of <milovati, -ujǫ, -uješi> show mercy to -- showed mercy to
  • Bogu -- noun, masculine; dative singular of <bogŭ> god -- God
  • rabotajǫštiimŭ -- verb; present active participle; dative plural masculine of <rabotati, -ajǫ, -aješi> serve, do service to -- those who served
  • služaaše -- verb; 3rd person singular imperfect of <služiti, -žǫ, -žiši> minister (to), serve -- he served
  • crĭkŭvi -- noun, feminine; accusative plural of <crĭky> church, temple -- churches
  • mŭnogyję -- adjective; accusative plural feminine of <mŭnogŭ> much, many -- many
  • zlatomĭ -- noun, neuter; instrumental singular of <zlato> gold -- with gold
  • krašaaše -- verb; 3rd person singular imperfect of <krasiti, -šǫ, -siši> decorate, adorn -- he adorned

Lesson Text

se nyně sŭbystŭ sę proročĭskoje slovo, ježe glagola samŭ gospodĭ našĭ Isusŭ Xrĭstŭ | Bǫdetŭ bo, reče, vŭ poslědĭn'jęję dĭni, jęže mĭnimŭ nyně sǫštę, vŭstanetŭ bratrŭ na bratra svojego i synŭ na otĭcĭ svoi, vradzi člověku domaši jego | Člověci bo sebě bǫdǫtŭ nemili, i vŭzdastŭ imŭ Bogŭ po dělomŭ ixŭ | Bystŭ že kŭnędzĭ eterŭ vŭ Česěxŭ imenĭmĭ Bratislavŭ, žena že jego naricajema Dragomira | I roždĭša synŭ svoi prĭvěnĭcĭ i krĭstiste i i narěste imę jemu Vęšteslavŭ | Vŭzdrastŭšu že jemu jako postrišti i, prizŭva Bratislavŭ, otĭcĭ jego, na postriženĭje biskupa etera, imenĭmĭ Notara, i sĭ kliriky jego | Vŭspěvŭšemŭ že imŭ mĭšǫ jemu vŭ crĭkŭvi svętyję Marĭję, vŭzĭmŭ biskupŭ otroka, postavi i na krilě stepenĭnějemĭ prědŭ oltar'emĭ i blagoslovi i reky | Gospodi Bože, Isu Xrĭste, blagoslovi otroka sego, jakože blagoslovilŭ jesi vĭsę pravĭdĭniky tvoję | Sice že sŭ blagoslovl'enĭjemĭ postriženŭ bystŭ | Těmĭže mĭnimŭ, jako blagoslovl'enĭjemĭ biskupa togo pravĭdĭnajego i molitvami jego načętŭ otrokŭ rasti, blagodětĭjǫ božĭjejǫ xranimŭ | Navyče že kŭnigy slověnĭskyję i latinĭskyję dobrě | Umĭrŭšu že otĭcu jego, Bratislavu, postavišę Česi kŭnęza Vęšteslava na stolě dědĭn'i | Boleslavŭ že, bratrŭ jego, rastěaše podŭ n'imĭ; běašete že oba ješte mala | Nŭ mati jeju Dragomira utvrĭdi zeml'jǫ, i ljudi stroi, don'ĭdeže vŭzdraste Vęšteslavŭ, i vŭzdrastŭ, načę samŭ stroiti ljudi svoję | Blagodětĭjǫ že božĭjejǫ vŭ istinǫ Vęšteslavŭ kŭnęzĭ ne tŭkŭmo kŭnigy navyče dobrě, nŭ i věrojǫ sŭvrĭšenŭ bě | Vĭsěmŭ že ništiimŭ dobra tvorjaaše, nagyję oděvaaše, lačǫštęję pitěaše, stranĭnyję prijeml'jaaše po evang'elĭsku glasu | Vĭdovicĭ že obiděti ne daděaše, ljudi vĭsę, ubogyję i bogatyję, milovaaše, Bogu rabotajǫštiimŭ služaaše, crĭkŭvi mŭnogyję zlatomĭ krašaaše |

Translation

(1) Behold, now the prophetic word, which our Lord Jesus Christ spoke himself, was fulfilled: (2) 'For it will happen', he said, 'in the final days, which we believe to be now, brother shall rise against his own brother and son against his father, and a man's foes shall be they of his own household.' (3) For men will be unpitying to one another, and God will dispense according to their deeds. (4) But there was a certain prince in the Czech Lands, Bratislav by name, and his wife was called Dragomira. (5) And having produced their first-born son, they christened him and gave him the name Venceslav. (6) And as he grew so big as to tonsure him, his father Bratislav invited to this tonsure a certain bishop, Notar by name, and his clerics with him. (7) And when they celebrated the mass for him in the Church of the Holy Maria, the bishop took up the boy, placed him on the top step before the altar, and blessed him, saying: (8) 'Lord God, Jesus Christ, bless this boy, as you have blessed all yours who are just.' (9) And so with a blessing he was tonsured. (10) And by this we believe that, with the blessing of that just bishop and by his prayers, the boy began to grow, protected by God's grace. (11) He learned well the Slavonic and Latin letters. (12) And when his father Bratislav died, the Czechs established Venceslav as prince upon his grandfather's throne. (13) And Boleslav, his brother, grew alongside him; both were still young. (14) But their mother Dragomira ruled the land, and adminstered to the people, while Venceslav was growing up; and when he was grown, he began himself to administer to his people. (15) But by the grace of God, prince Venceslav truly learned well not only letters, but was also filled by faith. (16) He would perform good deeds among all the poor, clothe the naked, nourish the hungry, take in strangers according to the word of the evangel. (17) He would not permit a widow to be disgraced -- he showed mercy to all people, rich or poor; he served those who served God, and adorned many churches with gold.

Grammar

41. The Fourth Conjugation

The fourth conjugation contains those verbs whose present stem is augmented by the suffix -i. The infinitive stem ends in either -i or -ě, sometimes -a. In certain forms, the stem suffix -i changed to -j before a vowel. In the first person singular of the present tense, the ending -ǫ is always preceded by j, resulting in palatalization of any stem-final consonant. The third person plural ending is -ętŭ rather than -ǫtŭ. All other present tense forms show the suffix -i- between root and ending. Other than the first person singular, the present stem shows no palatalization of root-final consonants, except for the usual velar palatalization before the front vowels -i and -ę.

In addition to the first person singular of the present tense, other forms showing -j palatalization are the imperfect, the past active participle, and the past passive participle. The following are examples of the possible changes.

Infinitive   1st Sg. Pres.   2nd Sg. Pres.   1st Sg. Imperf.   Past Act. Pt.   Past Pass. Pt.
voziti   vožǫ   voziši   vožaaxŭ   vožĭ   voženŭ
voditi   voždǫ   vodiši   voždaaxŭ   voždĭ   voždenŭ
mǫtiti   mǫštǫ   mǫtiši   mǫštaaxŭ   mǫštĭ   mǫštenŭ
pustiti   puštǫ   pustiši   puštaaxŭ   puštĭ   puštenŭ
ljubiti   ljubl'jǫ   ljubiši   ljubl'jaaxŭ   ljubl'ĭ   ljubl'jenŭ
                     

Examples of fourth conjugation verbs are moliti, -l'jǫ, -liši 'ask'; l'jubiti, -bl'jǫ, -biši 'love'; viděti, -ždǫ, -diši 'see'; kričati, -čǫ, -čiši 'call'.

Present   mol-   l'jub-   vid-   krič-
                 
1st Sg.   mol'jǫ   l'jubl'jǫ   viždǫ   kričǫ
2   moliši   l'jubiši   vidiši   kričiši
3   molitŭ   l'jubitŭ   viditŭ   kričitŭ
                 
1st Du.   molivě   l'jubivě   vidivě   kričivě
2   molita   l'jubita   vidita   kričita
3   molite   l'jubite   vidite   kričite
                 
1st Pl.   molimŭ   l'jubimŭ   vidimŭ   kričimŭ
2   molite   l'jubite   vidite   kričite
3   molętŭ   l'jubętŭ   vidętŭ   kričętŭ
                 
Imperative                
1st Sg.   -   -   -   -
2   moli   l'jubi   viždĭ   kriči
3   moli   l'jubi   viždĭ   kriči
                 
1st Du.   molivě   l'jubivě   vidivě   kričivě
2   molita   l'jubita   vidita   kričita
3   molite   l'jubite   vidite   kričite
                 
1st Pl.   molimŭ   l'jubimŭ   vidimŭ   kričimŭ
2   molite   l'jubite   vidite   kričite
3   -   -   -   -
                 
Pres. Act. Part.                
Masc./Neut. N   molę   l'jubę   vidę   kričę
Fem. N   molęšti   l'jubęšti   vidęšti   kričęšti
                 
Pres. Pass. Part.                
Masc. N   molimŭ   l'jubimŭ   vidimŭ   kričimŭ
            vidomŭ    
                 
Imperfect                
1st Sg.   mol'jaaxŭ   l'jubl'jaaxŭ   viždaaxŭ   kričaaxŭ
2   mol'jaaše   l'jubl'jaaše   viždaaše   kričaaše
3   mol'jaaše   l'jubl'jaaše   viždaaše   kričaaše
                 
1st Du.   mol'jaaxově   l'jubl'jaaxově   viždaaxově   kričaaxově
2   mol'jaašeta   l'jubl'jaašeta   viždaašeta   kričaašeta
3   mol'jaašete   l'jubl'jaašete   viždaašete   kričaašete
                 
1st Pl.   mol'jaaxomŭ   l'jubl'jaaxomŭ   viždaaxomŭ   kričaaxomŭ
2   mol'jaašete   l'jubl'jaašete   viždaašete   kričaašete
3   mol'jaaxǫ   l'jubl'jaaxǫ   viždaaxǫ   kričaaxǫ
                 
Sigmatic Aorist                
1st Sg.   molixŭ   l'jubixŭ   viděxŭ   kričaxŭ
2   moli   l'jubi   vidě   kriča
3   moli   l'jubi   vidě   kriča
                 
1st Du.   molixově   l'jubixově   viděxově   kričaxově
2   molista   l'jubista   viděsta   kričasta
3   moliste   l'jubiste   viděste   kričaste
                 
1st Pl.   molixomŭ   l'jubixomŭ   viděxomŭ   kričaxomŭ
2   moliste   l'jubiste   viděste   kričaste
3   molišę   l'jubišę   viděšę   kričašę
                 
Past Act. Part.                
Masc./Neut. N   mol'ĭ   l'jubl'ĭ   viděvŭ   kričavŭ
        ljubivŭ        
Fem. N   mol'ĭši   l'jubl'ĭši   viděvŭši   kričavŭši
        ljubivŭši        
Resultative Part.                
Masc. N   molilŭ   l'jubilŭ   vidělŭ   kričalŭ
                 
Past Pass. Part.                
Masc. N   mol'enŭ   l'jubl'enŭ   viděnŭ   -
                 
Infinitive   moliti   l'jubiti   viděti   kričati
                 
Supine   molitŭ   ljubitŭ   vidětŭ   kričatŭ
                 
Verbal Noun   molenĭje   ljubl'jenĭje   viděnĭje   kričanĭje
                 

Note the imperative forms viždĭ of the verb viděti, as well as the two forms vidimŭ and vidomŭ of the present passive participle.

42. The Conjugation of xotěti

The verb xotěti 'to wish' belongs to the fourth conjugation only in the third person plural of the present and in the present active participle. The present is formed with a stem in -je-, the imperfect and aorist from the stem xot-.

Present   Singular   Dual   Plural
1   xoštǫ   xoštevě   xoštemŭ
2   xošteši   xošteta   xoštete
    xošte        
3   xoštetŭ   xoštete   xotętŭ
             
Imperative   xošti        
             
Pres. Act. Part.            
Masc./Neut. N   xotę        
Fem. N   xotęšti        
             
Imperfect   xotěaxŭ        
             
Aorist   xotěxŭ        
             
Past Act. Part.            
Masc./Neut. N   xotěvŭ        
Fem. N   xotěvŭši        
             
Resultative Part.            
Masc. N   xotělŭ        
             
Verbal Noun   xotěnĭje        
             
43. The Instrumental Case

The instrumental case denotes agent or accompaniment, both figuratively and concretely. It agrees nicely with the English word 'with' in all its various senses: 'with a hammer', 'with my friends', 'with sympathy', etc. The following are some examples: že mariě pomazavŭšiě gospoda myromĭ 'Mary was the one having anointed the Lord with myrrh'; glasomĭ veliemĭ vŭzŭva 'He cried out in a loud voice'; idǫ... korabl'jemĭ 'they went... by boat'; iskušajemŭ sotonojǫ 'being tempted by Satan'; javi iněmĭ obrazomĭ 'he appeared in another form'. The instrumental sometimes has the sense 'with respect to': blaženii ništii duxomĭ 'blessed are the poor in spirit'.

Some verbs regularly take the instrumental. For example, some verbs of ruling have an instrumental complement: ti obladajǫtŭ zeml'jejǫ 'they rule the earth'. Similarly the verb pešti 'to worry about' takes the instrumental: ne pĭcěte dušejǫ vašejǫ 'take no thought for your soul'.

The instrumental is sometimes used instead of the nominative for the predicate with verbs of being and becoming. One finds děvojǫ bo eüa 'for Eve was a virgin'; ne bǫdi nikŭtože ijudojǫ 'let no one be a Judas'.

44. Numerals

1. edinŭ masc., edino neut., edina fem.; G. edinogo masc./neut., edinoję fem. This is a pronominal adjective agreeing with a singular headword in case and gender.

2. dŭva masc., dŭvě neut., dŭvě fem. du. 'two', G. L. du. dŭvojǫ; oba masc., obě neut., obě fem. 'both, the two'. These are both pronominal adjectives agreeing with a dual headword in case and gender.

3. trĭje masc., tri neut., tri fem. pl., A. tri, G. trii, L. trĭxŭ, D. trĭmŭ, I. trĭmi. This is an adjective agreeing with a plural headword in case and gender.

4. četyre masc., četyri neut., četyri fem. pl., A. četyri, G. četyrĭ, L. četyrĭxŭ, D. četyremŭ, I. četyrĭmi. This is an adjective agreeing with a plural headword in case and gender.

5-10. The numerals from five to ten are nouns which govern a genitive plural denoting the thing enumerated. These numerals decline as singular feminine i-stem nouns:

  • 5. pętĭ, G. pęti
  • 6. šestĭ, G. šesti
  • 7. sedmĭ, G. sedmi
  • 8. osmĭ, G. osmi
  • 9. devętĭ, G. devęti
  • 10. desętĭ, G. desęti. This also declines as a consonant-stem noun, in particular having a locative form L. sg. desęte.

11-19. The teens are expressed as the corresponding units (whether adjectival or nominal), conjoined with the phrase na desęte, which remains invariable. For example G. dŭvojǫ na desęte rabu 'of the twelve servants'; pętĭ na desęte rabŭ 'fifteen servants'.

  • 11. edinŭ na desęte masc., edino na desęte neut., edina na desęte fem.
  • 12. dŭva na desęte masc., dŭvě na desęte neut., dŭvě na desęte fem. du.
  • 13. trĭje na desęte masc., tri na desęte neut., tri na desęte fem. pl.
  • 14. četyre na desęte masc., četyri na desęte neut., četyri na desęte fem. pl.
  • 15. pętĭ na desęte
  • 16. šestĭ na desęte
  • 17. sedmĭ na desęte
  • 18. osmĭ na desęte
  • 19. devętĭ na desęte

20, 30, ..., 90. The tens are expressed by phrases of the form 'four tens', 'five (of) tens', etc., where the unit is followed by the corresponding form of desętĭ. The phrase as a whole then governs a noun in the genitive plural.

  • 20. dŭva desęti, G. dŭvoju desętu
  • 30. trije desęte or tri desęti, G. trii desętŭ
  • 40. četyre desęte or četyri desęti, G. četyrĭ desętŭ
  • 50. pętĭ desętŭ, G. pęti desętŭ, where desętŭ remains in the G. pl.
  • 60. šestĭ desętŭ, G. šesti desętŭ
  • 70. sedmĭ desętŭ, G. sedmi desętŭ
  • 80. osmĭ desętŭ, G. osmi desętŭ
  • 90. devętĭ desętŭ, G. devęti desętŭ

100. sŭto. This is a noun and declines as a neuter hard o-stem. The thing enumerated is in the genitive plural.

200, 300, ..., 900. The hundreds follow the same constructions as the tens. For example, dŭvě sŭtě 'two hundred(s)', pętĭ sŭtŭ 'five (of) hundred(s)'.

1000. tysǫšti or tysęšti. This is a noun whose oblique forms follow the feminine ja-stem declension. The thing enumerated is placed in the genitive plural.

2000, 3000, ..., 9000. The thousands follow the same constructions as the tens and hundreds. For example, dŭvě tysǫšti 'two hundred(s)', tri tysǫštę 'three hundred(s)', pętĭ tysǫštĭ 'five (of) hundred(s)', etc. They govern substantives in the genitive plural.

10,000. desętĭ tysęštĭ, with tysęštĭ a genitive plural, or tŭma 'darkness, myriad', which is declined as a feminine a-stem.

The conjunction i is used to string together digits, e.g. sŭto i pętĭ desętŭ i tri 'one hundred fifty-three'.

45. Verb Use
45.1. The Present Tense

The present tense does not specify time. Imperfective presents denote action contemporaneous with the utterance, or contemporaneous with a past or future action when context dictates. They also indicate statements of general validity, or of repeated action. Perfective presents, by their nature, cannot indicate ongoing actions. They refer to the completion of an action, either in the near past or near future, as context dictates. These too may indicate statements of general validity; in contrast to imperfective presents, the perfective forms refer to the general action in its state of completion. For example, slĭnĭcu vŭsxodęštu sŭkryjetŭ stěn'ĭ 'when the sun rises, the shadow hides itself'. Imperfective and perfective presents are contrasted in the following general statement: ašte kto xoditŭ dĭne ne potŭknetŭ ... ašte kto xoditŭ noštip\ potŭknetŭ 'if someone walks (imperfective) during the day he does not stumble (perfective)... if someone walks at night he stumbles'.

45.2. The Future Tense

Future time is most often expressed by the present tense, usually with perfective verbs. The future of 'to be' is given by the forms of bǫdǫ, bǫdeši, etc. The verbs xotěti 'want' and načęti, vŭčęti 'begin' may be used in the present with an infinitive to denote future time. More prevalent are present forms of iměti, imamĭ, imaši 'have to' used with the infinitive. The collocation may have the literal meaning 'have to', indicating obligation; but more often the verb is used in the sense 'is to', 'is destined to'. For example, azŭ brašĭno imamĭ ěsti egože vy ne věste 'I have meant to eat that ye know not of'; ěko ne imatŭ li priti prazdĭnikŭ '... that he will not come to the feast, will he?' Past tense forms of xotěti and iměti denote an event in the future relative to some point in the past.