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Old Russian Online

Lesson 9

Todd B. Krause and Jonathan Slocum

V.iii A Changing of the Guard

The effects of the conquest by the Tartars were even more far-reaching than the destruction was widespread. This period of submission to the Mongols, the so-called Tartar Yoke, lasted for another two centuries, with a gradual decline in power over that period. The Qipchaq Khanate originally established by Batu was eventually conquered by the Crimean Tatars in 1502 (Ostrowski, 2009).

The same period of westward expansion for the Tartar invaders also saw eastward expansion for another European power: Lithuania. As the southwestern provinces of Galicia and Volhynia lay at the extremity of the Qipchaq Khanate, they were difficult for the Tartars to control, and ultimately they fell into the orbit of Lithuania. These polities comprised communities which may in large part be considered the forerunners of Belorussia and Ukraine, so that here we see a fork between the historical paths of development of these two political entities on the one hand, and Great Russia on the other.

Tartar imperial rule exploited the devolution of administrative responsibility. In particular the Qipchaq Khanate allowed regional Russian princes to administer their own realms, and it declared a single Grand Prince to rule over the others. This Grand Prince was initially located in Vladimir. The administrators of the khanate kept sons of the grand princes of the Rus as hostages to ensure loyalty. At the same time these sons learned first-hand the practice of governing the khanate (Ostrowski, 2009). As part of their patronage of the Russian principalities, the khans were expected to supply troops to the grand princes when the need arose. In return the Rus were expected to supply troops to the khan when called for. Conscription seems to have been based on census data, with the khan recruiting one in every ten males. The khan determined who would be the grand prince of the Russian principalities and issued patents (decrees) declaring the authority of princes, which they had to retrieve in person from the capital at Saray (Hingley, 2003; Ostrowski, 2009).

During the 14th century, the Tartars converted to Islam. Rather than engender conflict between Christian and Muslim clergies, the Tartars seem to have held a noteworthy tolerance for the Russian church. This tolerance manifested itself economically with an exemption from taxes for the clergy and monasteries. This in turn provided a privileged position from which the Church could cultivate its role as a spiritual and political unifier in a period of trial and tribulation for the Russian populace.

This twofold manifestation of influence wove itself deeply into the emerging fabric of Russian cultural and political identity. The political influence wielded by the Church was anything but hidden: the metropolitan St. Alexis served as the practical head of state under two successive Grand Princes of Moscow (Hingley, 2003). This fostered a growing identification among the populace of the Church with Russia itself (Andreyev, 1962). This popular embrace of the Church was at one and the same time necessitated by the turmoil brought by the Tartar invasion and fostered by the emergence of native-born saints. Among those dating to this period is St. Sergius of Radonezh, a prime example of the intertwining of Church and State during this period: "He is at once a monk and nature lover, gentle with his spiritual children and a lover of toil; he is the teacher and the inspirations of a whole pleiad of Russian ecclesiastical figures of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries; but he is also the servant of the rising realm of Muscovy and takes his stand above the pettiness of local interests. He is simple and wise, a man of action and a mystic." (Andreyev, 1962) Though entreated by St. Alexis to become his successor as metropolitan, St. Sergius nevertheless refused and remained dedicated to his duties as monk.

Most portentous for the future development of Eastern Europe and Central Asia is the slow and steady rise, amidst this tumult, of the polity of Moscow. The city began as a rather insignificant satellite of greater powers of the northeast reaches of the Rus, such as Vladimir and Suzdal. Indeed, during this same period Tver too was a rising power and looked to eclipse Moscow. But several facts seem to have shifted events in Moscow's favor.

To begin, Alexander Nevsky, the prince of Novgorod, had already garnered fame for breaking the tide of the Tartar advance before it engulfed Novgorod. This he achieved largely through diplomacy. But he also added to his military renown by fighting off encroaching Teutonic armies invading from the west. Later he relocated to Vladimir. His son Daniel took the throne in Moscow in 1276, solidifying Moscow as the seat of one of the most powerful families in the lands of the Rus at that time. Moreover, in 1326 the Metropolitanate of the Russian Church shifted its seat to Moscow, where it remained thereafter (Hingley, 2003). Thus the two axes of power in the Russian lands coalesced in Moscow.

All of this took place, however, under the auspices of Tartar administration. This shift of power, therefore, would not have taken place had it not been, at some level, sanctioned by the khanate administration. And we in fact see that the khanate did slowly shift the balance of power in Moscow's favor. Though the reason for this inclination is not entirely clear, a likely explanation stems from the idea that the Mongol administration preferred to see a balance of power among the principalities so as to prevent any direct challenge to Tartar authority (Hingley, 2003). Historians suspect that at this time Tver was actually the polity gaining regional dominance. The Tartars therefore likely sponsored the rise of Moscow as a counterbalance to Tver. We see this play out in the granting of patents: during the 14th century the khan thrice crowned the grand prince of Tver as administrator of the Russian principalities, once the grand prince of Suzdal. On the remaining occasions the title went to the grand prince of Moscow. The last such appointment went to Vasilii II in 1431. By 1449, Vasilii II declared himself the regional authority and issued patents to the remaining Russian princes (Ostrowski, 2009). Moreover as the Tartar grip over Russian lands slipped near the end of the 15th century, Moscow also found favor as a source of resistance against the encroaching Lithuanians (Hingley, 2003).

From this we see the important shifts that take place under the Tartar Yoke. The profound nature of the lasting effects cannot be exaggerated. The economy of greater Rus was left in disarray through the burning and looting of the cities, and the selling of survivors into slavery. This was further compounded by the tendency of the Tartars to identify the skilled craftsmen and send them to Tartar economic centers.

Moreover we find in the Tartar Yoke the first intimations of what would later become the Iron Curtain: Russia was relegated to a province of the Mongol Empire. This left its focus centered on the East, and effectively cut it off from the rest of Europe. This must provide an important factor in how the European Renaissance failed to have a profound impact within Russian society (Andreyev, 1962; Hingley, 2003).

Finally Andreyev (1962) puts it best when he says, "But Moscow had been learning 'imperialism' from the Mongols...". Tartar rule accentuated the political rivalries among the Russian principalities, while at the same time providing a model of authoritarian rule. The model involved a rigid and remorseless style of government that pitted subgroups against one another to subvert direct challenge to the central authority. In this we find the seed of the later unfolding of Russian history.

Reading and Textual Analysis

The following passage continues the story of Boris and Gleb. We learn of Gleb's reaction to the news that his father is ill and his attempt to return to his father's side as he lies on his deathbed.

21 - И не до сего остави убӏиства оканьныи Святопълкъ, нъ и на большая, неистовяся, начатъ простиратися...

  • И -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- even
  • не -- adverb; <нє> not -- Not
  • до -- preposition; <до> (w. gen.) to, up to; (with numerals) about -- at
  • сего -- demonstrative adjective; masculine genitive singular of <сь, сє, си> this, this one -- this (point)
  • остави -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <оставити, -вл҄ѭ, -виши> let, leave, neglect, forget -- did... stop
  • убӏиства -- noun; neuter genitive singular of <ѹбийство> killing, murder -- with the killing
  • оканьныи -- adjective; masculine nominative singular of <оканьнъ> wretched -- the wretched
  • Святопълкъ -- proper noun; masculine nominative singular of <Свѧтоплъкъ> Svjatopolk, Svyatopolk, Sviatopolk (name of a prince, brother of Jaroslav, Boris, Gleb, and Predslava) -- Svjatopolk
  • нъ -- conjunction; <нъ> but -- but
  • и -- adverb; <и> and; also, too, even -- ...
  • на -- preposition; <на> (w. acc.) onto, against, for, to the extent; (w. loc.) on, at -- into
  • большая -- comparative adjective; neuter accusative plural of <бол҄ьи> bigger, more -- more
  • неистовяся -- participle; masculine nominative singular of <нєистовити сѧ, -влѭ сѧ, -виши сѧ> be mad, be furious -- going mad
  • начатъ -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <начѧти, -чьнѫ, -чьнєши> begin -- he began
  • простиратися -- verb; infinitive of <простирати, -аѭ, -аѥши> extend + pronoun; accusative singular of <сєбє> -self, oneself -- to expand

22 - И си на ѹмѣ си положивъ, зълыи съвѣтьникъ дияволь, посла по блаженааго Глѣба, рекъ, "Приди въ бързѣ, отець зоветь тя, и не съдравить ти вельми."

  • И -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- And
  • си -- demonstrative pronoun; neuter accusative plural of <сь, сє, си> this, this one -- these things
  • на -- preposition; <на> (w. acc.) onto, against, for, to the extent; (w. loc.) on, at -- in
  • ѹмѣ -- noun; masculine locative singular of <ѹмъ> mind, reason, intellect -- mind
  • си -- pronoun; dative singular of <сєбє> -self, oneself -- his
  • положивъ -- past participle; masculine nominative singular of <положити, -жѫ, -жиши> lay down, set down -- having set
  • зълыи -- adjective; masculine nominative singular of <зълъ> evil, bad -- the evil
  • съвѣтьникъ -- noun; masculine nominative singular of <съвѣтьникъ> counsellor -- counsellor
  • дияволь -- adjective; masculine nominative singular of <диӏаволь> of the devil, belonging to the devil, diabolical -- possessed by the devil
  • посла -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <посълати, -л҄ѭ, -л҄ѥши> send, summon -- sent
  • по -- preposition; <по> (w. dat.) on, about (motion on surface); (w. acc.) on, after, on account of; (w. loc.) after, following, for -- for
  • блаженааго -- adjective; masculine genitive singular of <блажєнъ> blessed -- the blessed # Instead of an expected accusative after по
  • Глѣба -- proper noun; masculine genitive singular of <Глѣбъ> Gleb (name of a prince, brother of Svjatoslav, Jaroslav, Boris and Predslava) -- Gleb # Instead of an expected accusative after по
  • рекъ -- past participle; masculine nominative singular of <рєшти, рєкѫ, рєчєши> say, tell -- having said
  • Приди -- verb; 2nd person singular imperative of <прити, -идѫ, -идєши> come, arrive -- Come
  • въ -- preposition; <въ> (w. loc.) in; (w. acc.) into -- ...
  • бързѣ -- adjective used as substantive; neuter locative singular of <бързъ> rapid, quick -- quickly
  • отець -- noun; masculine nominative singular of <отьць> father -- father
  • зоветь -- verb; 3rd person singular present of <звати, зовѫ, зовєши> cry out; call, summon -- calls for
  • тя -- pronoun; accusative singular of <тъӏ> you, thou -- you
  • и -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- and
  • не -- adverb; <нє> not -- not
  • съдравить -- verb; 3rd person singular present of <съдравити, -влѭ, -виши> be healthy, be strong -- is... well
  • ти -- pronoun; dative singular of <тъӏ> you, thou -- for you # A rather textbook example of the so-called dative of reference: the dative frequently marks a party interested in the action or state denoted by the verb, but which has no direct involvement. Compare English use of for me in statements such as The new rules do not bode well for me.
  • вельми -- adverb; <вєльми> greatly, very; clearly -- very

23 - Онъ же въ бързѣ, въ малѣ дружинѣ, въсѣдъ на конь, поиде.

  • Онъ -- demonstrative pronoun; masculine nominative singular of <онъ, оно, она> that, that one -- that one
  • же -- conjunction; <жє> and, but -- And
  • въ -- preposition; <въ> (w. loc.) in; (w. acc.) into -- ...
  • бързѣ -- adjective used as substantive; neuter locative singular of <бързъ> rapid, quick -- quickly
  • въ -- preposition; <въ> (w. loc.) in; (w. acc.) into -- in
  • малѣ -- adjective; feminine locative singular of <малъ> small, young -- a small
  • дружинѣ -- noun; feminine locative singular of <дрѹжина> retinue, band of retainers, troop -- retinue
  • въсѣдъ -- past participle; masculine nominative singular of <въсѣсти, -сѧдѫ, -сѧдєши> sit, sit down; come down -- having mounted
  • на -- preposition; <на> (w. acc.) onto, against, for, to the extent; (w. loc.) on, at -- ...
  • конь -- noun; masculine accusative singular of <конь> horse -- a horse
  • поиде -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <поити, -идѫ, -идєши> go, set out; go back, return -- set out

24 - И пришедъ на Вългу.

  • И -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- And
  • пришедъ -- past participle; masculine nominative singular of <прити, -идѫ, -идєши> come, arrive -- he arrived # Note the use of the past participle instead of a finite (conjugated) verb form.
  • на -- preposition; <на> (w. acc.) onto, against, for, to the extent; (w. loc.) on, at -- at
  • Вългу -- proper noun; feminine accusative singular of <Волга> Volga, (Turkic) Itil, Atil (name of a river flowing into the Caspian Sea) -- the Volga

25 - На полѣ потъчеся подъ нимь конь въ ровѣ и наломи ногу мало.

  • На -- preposition; <на> (w. acc.) onto, against, for, to the extent; (w. loc.) on, at -- on
  • полѣ -- noun; masculine locative singular of <полъ, полѹ> side, bank, shore; sex; half -- the bank
  • потъчеся -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <потъкнѫти, -нѫ, -нєши> stick in or on, fix in or on, fasten together, bind; set up, prop up; strike + pronoun; accusative singular of <сєбє> -self, oneself -- stumbled
  • подъ -- preposition; <подъ> (w. acc.) under, below (object of motion); (w. instr.) under, below (location) -- beneath
  • нимь -- pronoun; masculine instrumental singular of <> he -- him
  • конь -- noun; masculine accusative singular of <конь> horse -- the horse
  • въ -- preposition; <въ> (w. loc.) in; (w. acc.) into -- in
  • ровѣ -- noun; masculine locative singular of <ровъ> ditch, hole -- a rut
  • и -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- and
  • наломи -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <наломити, -млѭ, -миши> break, fracture -- broke
  • ногу -- noun; feminine accusative singular of <нога> foot -- (its) leg
  • мало -- adverb; neuter accusative singular of <малъ> small, young -- a bit

26 - И яко приде Смолиньску и поиде отъ Смолиньска, яко зьрѣимо едино, ста на Смядинѣ въ кораблици.

  • И -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- And
  • яко -- conjunction; <ӏако> as, when; in order to; that; because; (introduces quotation) -- as (soon as)
  • приде -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <прити, -идѫ, -идєши> come, arrive -- he arrived
  • Смолиньску -- proper noun; masculine dative singular of <Смольньскъ> Smolensk (name of a city located along the Dnieper river) -- in Smolensk # Note the use of the dative to denote the object of directed motion, rather than the expected accusative.
  • и -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- again
  • поиде -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <поити, -идѫ, -идєши> go, set out; go back, return -- set out
  • отъ -- preposition; <отъ> (w. gen.) of, from; by -- from
  • Смолиньска -- proper noun; masculine genitive singular of <Смольньскъ> Smolensk (name of a city located along the Dnieper river) -- Smolensk
  • яко -- conjunction; <ӏако> as, when; in order to; that; because; (introduces quotation) -- (and) as
  • зьрѣимо -- noun; neuter nominative singular of <зьрѣимо> visible horizon, distance of eyesight; short distance -- a short distance
  • едино -- adjective; neuter nominative singular of <єдинъ> one, only -- (it was) only
  • ста -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <стати, станѫ, станєши> stand -- he boarded
  • на -- preposition; <на> (w. acc.) onto, against, for, to the extent; (w. loc.) on, at -- at
  • Смядинѣ -- proper noun; feminine locative singular of <Смядина> Smjadina, Smiadina, Smyadina; Smjadin, Smiadin, Smjadyn, Smiadyn (name of a river, affluent of the Dnieper) -- (the river) Smjadina
  • въ -- preposition; <въ> (w. loc.) in; (w. acc.) into -- ...
  • кораблици -- noun; masculine locative singular of <корабльць> caravel, (a type of) boat -- a caravel

27 - И въ се время пришьла бяаше вѣсть отъ Передъславы къ Ярославу о отьни съмьрти.

  • И -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- ...
  • въ -- preposition; <въ> (w. loc.) in; (w. acc.) into -- at
  • се -- demonstrative adjective; neuter accusative singular of <сь, сє, си> this, this one -- this
  • время -- noun; neuter accusative singular of <врѣмѧ> time -- time
  • пришьла -- past participle; feminine nominative singular of <прити, -идѫ, -идєши> come, arrive -- arrived
  • бяаше -- verb; 3rd person singular imperfect of <бъӏти, бѫдѫ, бѫдєши> be, become -- ...
  • вѣсть -- noun; feminine nominative singular of <вѣсть> announcement, report; rumor; fame -- news
  • отъ -- preposition; <отъ> (w. gen.) of, from; by -- from
  • Передъславы -- proper noun; feminine genitive singular of <Прѣдъслава> Peredslava, Predslava (name of a princess, sister of Svjatopolk, Jaroslav, Boris, and Gleb) -- Predslava
  • къ -- preposition; <къ> (w. dat.) to, toward -- to
  • Ярославу -- proper noun; masculine dative singular of <Ярославъ> Jaroslav, Yaroslav (name of a prince, brother of Svjatopolk, Boris, Gleb, and Predslava) -- Jaroslav
  • о -- preposition; <о (об)> (w. loc.) around; about, concerning; for; by; (w. instr.) at, by, along; (w. acc.) against -- concerning
  • отьни -- adjective; feminine locative singular of <отьнь> (poss. adj.) of the father, father's -- (his) father's
  • съмьрти -- noun; feminine locative singular of <съмрьть> death -- death

28 - И присла Ярославъ къ Глѣбу, река, "Не ходи, брате, отець ти умьрлъ, а братъ ти убӏенъ отъ Святопълка."

  • И -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- And
  • присла -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <присълати, -лѭ, -лѥши> send -- sent
  • Ярославъ -- proper noun; masculine nominative singular of <Ярославъ> Jaroslav, Yaroslav (name of the brother of Svjatoslav, Boris, Gleb, and Predslava) -- Jaroslav
  • къ -- preposition; <къ> (w. dat.) to, toward -- to
  • Глѣбу -- proper noun; masculine dative singular of <Глѣбъ> Gleb (name of a prince, brother of Svjatoslav, Jaroslav, Boris and Predslava) -- Gleb
  • река -- participle; masculine nominative singular of <рєшти, рєкѫ, рєчєши> say, tell -- saying
  • Не -- adverb; <нє> not -- not
  • ходи -- verb; 2nd person singular imperative of <ходити, -ждѫ, -диши> walk, go -- Do... go
  • брате -- noun; masculine vocative singular of <братръ, братъ> brother -- brother
  • отець -- noun; masculine nominative singular of <отьць> father -- father
  • ти -- pronoun; dative singular of <тъӏ> you, thou -- your
  • умьрлъ -- past participle; masculine nominative singular of <ѹмрѣти, -рѫ, -рєши> die -- (has) died
  • а -- conjunction; <а> and, but; if -- and
  • братъ -- noun; masculine nominative singular of <братръ, братъ> brother -- brother
  • ти -- pronoun; dative singular of <тъӏ> you, thou -- your
  • убӏенъ -- past passive participle; masculine nominative singular of <ѹбити, -биѭ, -биѥши> kill -- (has been) killed
  • отъ -- preposition; <отъ> (w. gen.) of, from; by -- by
  • Святопълка -- proper noun; masculine genitive singular of <Свѧтоплъкъ> Svjatopolk, Svyatopolk, Sviatopolk (name of a prince, brother of Jaroslav, Boris, Gleb, and Predslava) -- Svjatopolk

29 - И си услышавъ, блаженыи въспи плачьмь горькыимь и печалӏю сьрдьчьною и сице глаголааше, "О увы мнѣ, господине мои!

  • И -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- ...
  • си -- demonstrative pronoun; neuter accusative plural of <сь, сє, си> this, this one -- these things
  • услышавъ -- past participle; masculine nominative singular of <ѹслъӏшати, -шѫ, -шиши> hear, find out -- Having heard
  • блаженыи -- adjective used as substantive; masculine nominative singular of <блажєнъ> blessed -- the blessed one
  • въспи -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <възъпити, -пиѭ, -пиѥши> cry out -- cried out
  • плачьмь -- noun; masculine instrumental singular of <плачь> weeping, tears -- with... tears
  • горькыимь -- adjective; masculine instrumental singular of <горькъ> bitter, pungent, unpleasant -- mournful
  • и -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- and
  • печалӏю -- noun; feminine instrumental singular of <пєчаль> sadness, affliction -- sadness
  • сьрдьчьною -- adjective; feminine instrumental singular of <стръдьчинъ> of the heart, related to the heart, heart's -- in his heart
  • и -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- and
  • сице -- pronoun; neuter accusative singular of <сиць, сицє, сица> such, like this -- the following
  • глаголааше -- verb; 3rd person singular imperfect of <глаголати, -л҄ѭ, -л҄ѥши> say, speak -- said
  • О -- interjection; <о> (vocative particle followed by voc. or nom.) o!; (exclamatory particle followed by nom. or gen., less often dat.) oh! -- ...
  • увы -- interjection; <ѹвъӏ> (w. dat.) alas, woe -- Woe (is)
  • мнѣ -- pronoun; dative singular of <азъ> I -- to me
  • господине -- noun; masculine vocative singular of <господинъ> lord, master -- lord
  • мои -- adjective; masculine vocative singular of <мои, моє, моӏа> my, mine -- my

30 - Отъ двою плачю плачюся и стеню; дъвъю сѣтованӏю сѣтую и тужю.

  • Отъ -- preposition; <отъ> (w. gen.) of, from; by -- for
  • двою -- number adjective; masculine genitive dual of <дъва, дъвѣ> two -- two
  • плачю -- noun; masculine genitive dual of <плачь> weeping, tears -- sorrows
  • плачюся -- verb; 1st person singular present of <плакати, плачѫ, -чєши> weep, mourn + pronoun; accusative singular of <сєбє> -self, oneself -- I weep
  • и -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- and
  • стеню -- verb; 1st person singular present of <стєнати, -нѭ, -нѥши> groan, moan -- moan
  • дъвъю -- number adjective; neuter genitive dual of <дъва, дъвѣ> two -- two
  • сѣтованӏю -- noun; neuter genitive dual of <сѣтованьѥ> sorrow -- by... afflictions
  • сѣтую -- verb; 1st person singular present of <сѣтовати, -тѹѭ, -тѹѥши> mourn -- I am struck
  • и -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- and
  • тужю -- verb; 1st person singular present of <тѫжити, -жѫ, -жиши> shut in, drive, force, impel; be moved in a confined space; mourn -- pained

31 - Увы мнѣ!

  • Увы -- interjection; <ѹвъӏ> (w. dat.) alas, woe -- Woe (is)
  • мнѣ -- pronoun; dative singular of <азъ> I -- to me

32 - увы мнѣ!

  • увы -- interjection; <ѹвъӏ> (w. dat.) alas, woe -- Woe (is)
  • мнѣ -- pronoun; dative singular of <азъ> I -- to me

33 - Плачюся по отци; плачю паче, зѣло отчаяхъся, по тебѣ, брате и господине Борисе.

  • Плачюся -- verb; 1st person singular present of <плакати, плачѫ, -чєши> weep, mourn + pronoun; accusative singular of <сєбє> -self, oneself -- I weep
  • по -- preposition; <по> (w. dat.) on, about (motion on surface); (w. acc.) on, after, on account of; (w. loc.) after, following, for -- for
  • отци -- noun; masculine locative singular of <отьць> father -- (my) father
  • плачю -- verb; 1st person singular present of <плакати, плачѫ, -чєши> weep, mourn -- (and) I weep
  • паче -- adverb; <пачє> more, even more -- more
  • зѣло -- adverb; <зѣло> very -- exceedingly
  • отчаяхъся -- verb; 1st person singular imperfect of <отъчаӏати, -чаѭ, -чаѥши> give up hope, despair + pronoun; accusative singular of <сєбє> -self, oneself -- am... distraught
  • по -- preposition; <по> (w. dat.) on, about (motion on surface); (w. acc.) on, after, on account of; (w. loc.) after, following, for -- for
  • тебѣ -- pronoun; locative singular of <тъӏ> you, thou -- you
  • брате -- noun; masculine vocative singular of <братръ, братъ> brother -- brother
  • и -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- and
  • господине -- noun; masculine vocative singular of <господинъ> lord, master -- lord
  • Борисе -- proper noun; masculine vocative singular of <Борисъ> Boris (name of a prince, brother of Svjatopolk, Jaroslav, Gleb, and Predslava) -- Boris

34 - Како прободенъ еси, како без милости прочее съмрьти предася!

  • Како -- interrogative adverb; <како> how, how is it that -- How
  • прободенъ -- past passive participle; masculine nominative singular of <пробости, -дѫ, -дєши> wound, injure -- run through
  • еси -- verb; 2nd person singular present of <бъӏти, бѫдѫ, бѫдєши> be, become -- you were
  • како -- interrogative adverb; <како> how, how is it that -- how
  • без -- preposition; <бєз (бєс, бє)> (w. gen.) without -- without
  • милости -- noun; feminine genitive singular of <милость> grace, loving kindness -- mercy
  • прочее -- comparative adverb; <прочєѥ> therefore, but, finally; afterward -- finally
  • съмрьти -- noun; feminine dative singular of <съмрьть> death -- death
  • предася -- verb; 2nd person singular aorist of <прѣдати, -дамь, -даси> hand over, commend + pronoun; accusative singular of <сєбє> -self, oneself -- you... gave yourself

35 - Како не отъ врага, нъ отъ своего брата пагубу въспрӏялъ еси.

  • Како -- interrogative adverb; <како> how, how is it that -- How
  • не -- adverb; <нє> not -- not
  • отъ -- preposition; <отъ> (w. gen.) of, from; by -- from
  • врага -- noun; masculine genitive singular of <врагъ> enemy -- an enemy
  • нъ -- conjunction; <нъ> but -- but
  • отъ -- preposition; <отъ> (w. gen.) of, from; by -- from
  • своего -- adjective; masculine genitive singular of <свои, своє, своӏа> own, one's own -- your own # Note the preference for the (third person) reflexive possessive adjective, свои, rather than the second person possessive adjective, твои, even when the context makes clear the reference to the second person.
  • брата -- noun; masculine genitive singular of <братръ, братъ> brother -- brother
  • пагубу -- noun; feminine accusative singular of <пагѹба> capture; destruction, ruin; disease; corruption -- ruin
  • въспрӏялъ -- past participle; masculine nominative singular of <въсприѩти, -имѫ, -имєши> take up, receive -- encountered
  • еси -- verb; 2nd person singular present of <бъӏти, бѫдѫ, бѫдєши> be, become -- you

36 - Увы мнѣ!

  • Увы -- interjection; <ѹвъӏ> (w. dat.) alas, woe -- Woe (is)
  • мнѣ -- pronoun; dative singular of <азъ> I -- to me

37 - Уне бы ми съ тобою умрети, неже уединену и усирену отъ тебе въ семь житӏи пожити.

  • Уне -- comparative adjective; neuter nominative singular of <ѹньи, ѹн҄є, ѹн҄ьши> better -- preferable
  • бы -- verb; 3rd person singular conditional-optative of <бъӏти, бѫдѫ, бѫдєши> be, become -- It would have been
  • ми -- pronoun; dative singular of <азъ> I -- for me
  • съ -- preposition; <съ> (w. gen.) (down) from; (w. instr.) with -- with
  • тобою -- pronoun; instrumental singular of <тъӏ> you, thou -- you
  • умрети -- verb; infinitive of <ѹмрѣти, -рѫ, -рєши> die -- to die
  • неже -- adverb; <нє> not + conjunction; <жє> and, but -- and not
  • уединену -- past passive participle; masculine dative singular of <ѹѥдинити, -нѭ, -ниши> leave behind alone; unite -- bereft # Agreeing with preceding ми
  • и -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- and
  • усирену -- past passive participle; masculine dative singular of <ѹсирити, -рѭ, -риши> deprive of parents, orphan; deprive (in general) -- orphaned # Agreeing with preceding ми
  • отъ -- preposition; <отъ> (w. gen.) of, from; by -- of
  • тебе -- pronoun; genitive singular of <тъӏ> you, thou -- you
  • въ -- preposition; <въ> (w. loc.) in; (w. acc.) into -- ...
  • семь -- demonstrative adjective; neuter locative singular of <сь, сє, си> this, this one -- this
  • житӏи -- noun; neuter locative singular of <житьѥ> life -- life
  • пожити -- verb; infinitive of <пожити, -живѫ, -живєши> live -- to live out

38 - Азъ мнѣхъ узьрѣти лице твое англьское.

  • Азъ -- pronoun; nominative singular of <азъ> I -- I
  • мнѣхъ -- verb; 1st person singular aorist of <мьнѣти, мьнѭ, мьниши> believe, think, assume -- hoped
  • узьрѣти -- verb; infinitive of <ѹзьрѣти, -р҄ѭ, -риши> see, perceive -- to see
  • лице -- noun; neuter accusative singular of <лицє> face, form -- face
  • твое -- adjective; neuter accusative singular of <твои, твоє, твоӏа> thy, thine, your, of you (sg.) -- your
  • англьское -- adjective; neuter accusative singular of <ангєльскъ> of an angel, angel's, angelic -- angelic

39 - Ти се селика туга състиже мя, и унылъ быхъ съ тобою умрети, господине мои.

  • Ти -- adverb; <ти> and; but; (added to adverbs) indeed -- Indeed
  • се -- adverb; <сє> lo, behold -- ...
  • селика -- adjective; feminine nominative singular of <сєликъ> of this size, such -- such
  • туга -- noun; feminine nominative singular of <тѫга> distress, difficulty -- misery
  • състиже -- verb; 3rd person singular aorist of <състигнѫти, -нѫ, -нєши> follow, pursue, catch up with, overtake, obtain, procure -- has befallen
  • мя -- pronoun; accusative singular of <азъ> I -- me
  • и -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- and
  • унылъ -- past participle; masculine nominative singular of <ѹнити, -нѭ, -ниши> want; desire; beg; prefer -- wished
  • быхъ -- verb; 1st person singular conditional-optative of <бъӏти, бѫдѫ, бѫдєши> be, become -- I would have
  • съ -- preposition; <съ> (w. gen.) (down) from; (w. instr.) with -- with
  • тобою -- pronoun; instrumental singular of <тъӏ> you, thou -- you
  • умрети -- verb; infinitive of <ѹмрѣти, -рѫ, -рєши> die -- to die
  • господине -- noun; masculine vocative singular of <господинъ> lord, master -- lord
  • мои -- adjective; masculine vocative singular of <мои, моє, моӏа> my, mine -- my

40 - Нынѣ же что сътворю азъ, умиленыи, очюженыи отъ твоея доброты и отъ отца моего мъногааго разума?

  • Нынѣ -- adverb; <нъӏн҄ӏа, нъӏнѣ> now -- now
  • же -- conjunction; <жє> and, but -- But
  • что -- interrogative pronoun; neuter accusative singular of <къто> who -- what
  • сътворю -- verb; 1st person singular present of <сътворити, -рѭ, -риши> do, make -- shall... do
  • азъ -- pronoun; nominative singular of <азъ> I -- I
  • умиленыи -- adjective; masculine nominative singular of <ѹмил҄єнъ> dejected, abject -- dejected
  • очюженыи -- past passive participle; masculine nominative singular of <отъчѹждити, -дѫ, -диши> separate, remove -- bereft
  • отъ -- preposition; <отъ> (w. gen.) of, from; by -- of
  • твоея -- adjective; feminine genitive singular of <твои, твоє, твоӏа> thy, thine, your, of you (sg.) -- your
  • доброты -- noun; feminine genitive singular of <доброта> goodness; beauty; virtue -- virtue
  • и -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- and
  • отъ -- preposition; <отъ> (w. gen.) of, from; by -- of
  • отца -- noun; masculine genitive singular of <отьць> father -- father
  • моего -- adjective; masculine genitive singular of <мои, моє, моӏа> my, mine -- my
  • мъногааго -- adjective; masculine genitive singular of <мъногъ> much, many -- great
  • разума -- noun; masculine genitive singular of <разѹмъ> understanding, sense, opinion, basic thought -- of... counsel

41 - О милыи мои брате и господине!

  • О -- interjection; <о> (vocative particle followed by voc. or nom.) o!; (exclamatory particle followed by nom. or gen., less often dat.) oh! -- O
  • милыи -- adjective; masculine vocative singular of <милъ> wretched, pitiable; excusable -- poor
  • мои -- adjective; masculine vocative singular of <мои, моє, моӏа> my, mine -- my
  • брате -- noun; masculine vocative singular of <братръ, братъ> brother -- brother
  • и -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- and
  • господине -- noun; masculine vocative singular of <господинъ> lord, master -- lord

42 - Аще еси уполучилъ дрьзновенӏе у господа, моли о моемь унынӏи, да быхъ азъ съподобленъ былъ ту же страсть въспрӏяти и съ тобою жити, неже въ свѣтѣ семь прельстьнѣмь."

  • Аще -- conjunction; <аштє> if, whether -- If
  • еси -- verb; 2nd person singular present of <бъӏти, бѫдѫ, бѫдєши> be, become -- you have
  • уполучилъ -- past participle; masculine nominative singular of <ѹполѹчити сѧ, -чѫ сѧ, -чиши сѧ> be in the way, come upon, meet -- attained
  • дрьзновенӏе -- noun; neuter accusative singular of <дръзновєньѥ> daring, audacity; trust, confidence, reliance -- trust
  • у -- preposition; <ѹ> (w. gen.) near, at, by -- at the side of
  • господа -- noun; masculine genitive singular of <господь> lord, master -- the Lord
  • моли -- verb; 2nd person singular imperative of <молити, -лѭ, -лиши> beseech, ask; pray -- beseech
  • о -- preposition; <о (об)> (w. loc.) around; about, concerning; for; by; (w. instr.) at, by, along; (w. acc.) against -- on behalf of
  • моемь -- adjective; neuter locative singular of <мои, моє, моӏа> my, mine -- my
  • унынӏи -- noun; neuter locative singular of <ѹнъӏньѥ> mourning, sadness; carelessness, negligence, neglect -- sorrow
  • да -- conjunction; <да> in order to, that; may, let; and, then -- that
  • быхъ -- verb; 1st person singular conditional-optative of <бъӏти, бѫдѫ, бѫдєши> be, become -- be
  • азъ -- pronoun; nominative singular of <азъ> I -- I
  • съподобленъ -- past passive participle; masculine nominative singular of <съподобити, -блѭ, -биши> deem worthy -- deemed worthy
  • былъ -- past participle; masculine nominative singular of <бъӏти, бѫдѫ, бѫдєши> be, become -- ... # The construction allows two interpretations: (1) we might consider быхъ... былъ the main verb, and so съподобленъ should be taken as the predicate adjective; or (2) we might take съподобити itself as the verb, and here we find an example of a true periphrastic passive construction.
  • ту -- adverb; <тѹ> there; then -- there
  • же -- conjunction; <жє> and, but -- ...
  • страсть -- noun; feminine accusative singular of <страсть> suffering, woe; passion, martyrdom -- martyrdom
  • въспрӏяти -- verb; infinitive of <въсприѩти, -имѫ, -имєши> take up, receive -- to receive
  • и -- conjunction; <и> and; also, too, even -- and
  • съ -- preposition; <съ> (w. gen.) (down) from; (w. instr.) with -- with
  • тобою -- pronoun; instrumental singular of <тъӏ> you, thou -- you
  • жити -- verb; infinitive of <жити, -живѫ, -живєши> live -- live
  • неже -- adverb; <нє> not + conjunction; <жє> and, but -- and not
  • въ -- preposition; <въ> (w. loc.) in; (w. acc.) into -- in
  • свѣтѣ -- noun; masculine accusative singular of <свѣтъ> light -- light
  • семь -- demonstrative adjective; masculine locative singular of <сь, сє, си> this, this one -- this
  • прельстьнѣмь -- adjective; masculine locative singular of <прѣльстьнъ> deceitful, illusive, fraudful, flattering -- illusory

Lesson Text

21 И не до сего остави убӏиства оканьныи Святопълкъ, нъ и на большая, неистовяся, начатъ простиратися...

22 И си на ѹмѣ си положивъ, зълыи съвѣтьникъ дияволь, посла по блаженааго Глѣба, рекъ, "Приди въ бързѣ, отець зоветь тя, и не съдравить ти вельми."

23 Онъ же въ бързѣ, въ малѣ дружинѣ, въсѣдъ на конь, поиде. 24 И пришедъ на Вългу. 25 На полѣ потъчеся подъ нимь конь въ ровѣ и наломи ногу мало. 26 И яко приде Смолиньску и поиде отъ Смолиньска, яко зьрѣимо едино, ста на Смядинѣ въ кораблици. 27 И въ се время пришьла бяаше вѣсть отъ Передъславы къ Ярославу о отьни съмьрти. 28 И присла Ярославъ къ Глѣбу, река, "Не ходи, брате, отець ти умьрлъ, а братъ ти убӏенъ отъ Святопълка."

29 И си услышавъ, блаженыи въспи плачьмь горькыимь и печалӏю сьрдьчьною и сице глаголааше, "О увы мнѣ, господине мои! 30 Отъ двою плачю плачюся и стеню; дъвъю сѣтованӏю сѣтую и тужю. 31 Увы мнѣ! 32 увы мнѣ! 33 Плачюся по отци; плачю паче, зѣло отчаяхъся, по тебѣ, брате и господине Борисе. 34 Како прободенъ еси, како без милости прочее съмрьти предася! 35 Како не отъ врага, нъ отъ своего брата пагубу въспрӏялъ еси. 36 Увы мнѣ! 37 Уне бы ми съ тобою умрети, неже уединену и усирену отъ тебе въ семь житӏи пожити. 38 Азъ мнѣхъ узьрѣти лице твое англьское. 39 Ти се селика туга състиже мя, и унылъ быхъ съ тобою умрети, господине мои. 40 Нынѣ же что сътворю азъ, умиленыи, очюженыи отъ твоея доброты и отъ отца моего мъногааго разума? 41 О милыи мои брате и господине! 42 Аще еси уполучилъ дрьзновенӏе у господа, моли о моемь унынӏи, да быхъ азъ съподобленъ былъ ту же страсть въспрӏяти и съ тобою жити, неже въ свѣтѣ семь прельстьнѣмь."

Translation

21 Not even at this point did the wretched Svjatopolk stop with the killing, but, going mad, he began to expand into more...
22 And having set these things in his mind, the evil Svjatopolk, possessed by the devil, sent for the blessed Gleb, having said, "Come quickly, father calls for you, and he is not very well for you."
23 And that one, with a small retinue, having mounted a horse, set out quickly. 24 And he arrived at the Volga. 25 And on the bank the horse beneath him stumbled in a rut and broke its leg a bit. 26 And as (soon as) he arrived in Smolensk, he again set out from Smolensk, and as (it was) only a short distance, he boarded a caravel at (the river) Smjadina. 27 At this time news arrived to Jaroslav from Predslava concerning his father's death. 28 And Jaroslav sent to Gleb, saying, "Do not go, brother, your father has died, and your brother has been killed by Svjatopolk."
29 Having heard these things, the blessed one cried out with mournful tears and sadness in his heart and said the following: "Woe is to me, my lord! 30 For two sorrows I weep and moan; by two afflictions I am struck and pained. 31 Woe is to me! 32 Woe is to me! 33 I weep for my father; and I weep more, (and) am exceedingly distraught, for you, Boris, brother and lord. 34 How you were run through, how without mercy you finally gave yourself to death! 35 How not from an enemy, but from your own brother you encountered ruin! 36 Woe is to me! 37 It would have been preferable for me to die with you, and not to live out this life bereft of you and orphaned. 38 I hoped to see your angelic face. 39 Indeed, such misery has befallen me, and I would have wished to die with you, my lord. 40 But now what shall I do, dejected, bereft of your virtue and of my father of great counsel? 41 O my poor brother and lord! 42 If you have attained trust at the side of the Lord, beseech on behalf of my sorrow, that I be deemed worthy to receive martyrdom and live there with you, and not in this illusory light."

Grammar

41. The Fourth Conjugation

The fourth conjugation comprises the so-called semi-thematic verbs. These verbs are characterized by the suffix -и- applied to the verbal root and preceding the endings. This suffix originally derives from PIE *-ej- > CS *-i:-. Class IV verbs fall into two subcategories based on the formation of the infinitive stem.

  • Class IVA: these verbs exhibit the suffix -и-, derived from PIE *-i:-, between the verbal root and the infinitive suffix -ти. Example: ход-и-ти 'to go', with present tense stem ход-и-.
  • Class IVB: these verbs display the suffix -ѣ-, derived from PIE *-e:-, between the verbal root and the infinitive suffix -ти. After palatal consonants, including -j-, this -ѣ- is backed to -а-. Example: вид-ѣ-ти 'to see', with present tense stem вид-и-; сто-я-ти 'to stand', with present tense stem сто- [stoj-].

In contrast to the preceding classes, verbs of Class IV do not insert the thematic vowel *-e/o- before the present tense endings. Rather they append the endings directly to the -i- suffix characterizing the conjugation. In the first person singular, the ending itself contains a vowel, and in prevocalic position the suffix -i- becomes the palatal glide -j-: *-i-om > *-jom > *-jǫ > Old Russian -ju, OCS -jǫ. This palatal glide in turn triggers j-palatalization in the preceding consonant. Class IV verbs therefore regularly display the effects of j-palatalization in the first person singular.

Another characteristic feature of the fourth conjugation concerns the third person plural. Since the fourth conjugation foregoes the thematic vowel, the ending *-nti is affixed directly to the characteristic -i-. In Common Slavic, rather than producing the back nasalized vowel -ǫ- characteristic of the third person plural in other conjugations, we find instead the front nasalized vowel: *-i-nti > *-intĭ > *-ętĭ > Old Russian -jatĭ, OCS -ętŭ. Thus the ending -ять characterizes the third person plural of Class IV verbs in Old Russian. A corollary of this fact is that the present participle displays a stem in -яч- or -ящ- throughout the paradigm, rather than the stem in -уч- or -ущ- characteristic of other conjugations.

In the remaining forms of the present tense, the characteristic suffix lies in pre-consonantal position and so retains its vocalic character. The remaining forms therefore do not display any effects of j-palatalization, though original root-final velars show the usual palatalization before front vowels. The following table provides examples of some verbs belonging to Class IV.

Class   Infinitive   Meaning   1st Sg.   2nd Sg.   Pres. Stem   Suffixed Stem
IVA   молити   demand   мол҄ю   молиши   [mol-i-]   мол-и-
IVA   страшити   frighten   страшу   страшиши   [straš-i-]   страш-и-
                         
IVB   слышати   hear   слышу   слышиши   [slyš-i-]   слыш-а-
IVB   стояти   stand   стою   стоиши   [sto-i-]   сто-я-
IVB   сѣдѣти   seat   сѣжу   сѣдиши   [sěd-i-]   сѣд-ѣ-

The j-palatalization of the root-final consonant encountered in the first person singular present indicative active of Class IV verbs also reappears with some frequency in other forms. In particular we find softening of the root-final consonant in the past passive participle, in some imperfect forms, and in the verbal noun, among other forms. Consider the following forms.

Infinitive   Meaning   Pres. 1 Sg.   Pres. 2 Sg.   Impf. 1 Sg.   Past Pass. Part.
любити   love   любл҄ю   любиши   любл҄аахъ   любл҄єнъ
пустити   allow   пущу   пустиши   пущаахъ   пущєнъ

The verbs ходити 'to go' and просити 'to ask' serve to illustrate the forms of Class IVA verbs. The verbs видѣти 'to see' and стояти 'to stand' serve to illustrate the forms of verbs belonging to Class IVB. The paradigms are listed in the table below. Note in particular the j-palatalization in the singular imperative forms of видѣти 'to see': second and third person singular imperative вижи.

Class IV   IVA   IVA   IVB   IVB
Stem   ход-   прос-   вид-   сто-
Present                
1 Sg.   хожю   прошю   вижю   стою
2   ходиши   просиши   видиши   стоиши
3   ходить   просить   видить   стоить
                 
1 Du.   ходивѣ   просивѣ   видивѣ   стоивѣ
2   ходита   просита   видита   стоита
3   ходита   просита   видита   стоита
                 
1 Pl.   ходимъ   просимъ   видимъ   стоимъ
2   ходитє   проситє   видитє   стоитє
3   ходять   просять   видять   стоять
                 
Imperative                
1 Sg.   -   -   -   -
2   ходи   проси   вижи   стои
3   ходи   проси   вижи   стои
                 
1 Du.   ходивѣ   просивѣ   видивѣ   стоивѣ
2   ходита   просита   видита   стоита
3   -   -   -   -
                 
1 Pl.   ходимъ   просимъ   видимъ   стоимъ
2   ходитє   проситє   видитє   стоитє
3   -   -   -   -
                 
Pres. Act. Part.                
Masc./Neut. N   ходя   прося   видя   стоя
Fem. N   ходячи   просячи   видячи   стоячи
                 
Pres. Pass. Part.                
Masc. N   -   просимъ   видимъ   -
                 
Imperfect I                
1 Sg.   ходяахъ   просяахъ   видяахъ   стояхъ
2   ходяашє   просяашє   видяашє   стояшє
3   ходяашє   просяашє   видяашє   стояшє
                 
1 Du.   ходяаховѣ   просяаховѣ   видяаховѣ   стояховѣ
2   ходяашєта   просяашєта   видяашєта   стояшєта
3   ходяашєта   просяашєта   видяашєта   стояшєта
                 
1 Pl.   ходяахомъ   просяахомъ   видяахомъ   стояхомъ
2   ходяашєтє   просяашєтє   видяашєтє   стояшєтє
3   ходяаху   просяаху   видяаху   стояху
                 
Imperfect II                
1 Sg.   хожаахъ   прошаахъ   -   -
2   хожаашє   прошаашє   -   -
3   хожаашє   прошаашє   -   -
                 
1 Du.   хожааховѣ   прошааховѣ   -   -
2   хожаашєта   прошаашєта   -   -
3   хожаашєта   прошаашєта   -   -
                 
1 Pl.   хожаахомъ   прошаахомъ   -   -
2   хожаашєтє   прошаашєтє   -   -
3   хожааху   прошааху   -   -
                 
New Aorist                
1 Sg.   ходихъ   просихъ   видѣхъ   стояхъ
2   ходи   проси   видѣ   стоя
3   ходи   проси   видѣ   стоя
                 
1 Du.   ходиховѣ   просиховѣ   видѣховѣ   стояховѣ
2   ходиста   просиста   видѣста   стояста
3   ходиста   просиста   видѣста   стояста
                 
1 Pl.   ходихомъ   просихомъ   видѣхомъ   стояхомъ
2   ходистє   просистє   видѣстє   стоястє
3   ходиша   просиша   видѣша   стояша
                 
Past Act. Part.                
Masc./Neut. N   ходивъ, хожь   просивъ, прошь   видѣвъ   стоявъ
Fem. N   ходивъши   просивъши   видѣвъши   стоявъши
                 
Resultative Part.                
Masc. N   ходилъ   просилъ   видѣлъ   стоялъ
                 
Past Pass. Part.                
Masc. N   -   прошєнъ   видѣнъ   -
                 
Infinitive   ходити   просити   видѣти   стояти
                 
Supine   ходитъ   проситъ   видѣтъ   стоятъ
                 
Verbal Noun   хожєньѥ   прошєньѥ   видѣньѥ   стояньѥ
42. The Conjugation of хотѣти

The verb хотѣти 'to want, wish' shows an inflection derived from a mixture of conjugation classes. The present tense in particular shows interesting variation. The verb shows forms that display the palatalization pattern and thematic vowel alternation proper to the Class III verbs. Such forms appear throughout the present tense, except in the third person plural. At the same time хотѣти shows present tense forms proper to Class IV verbs. These forms appear for all but the singular number. In particular, this implies that the singular forms always belong to Class III, while the third person plural always belongs to Class IV. The remaining present tense forms alternate between Classes III and IV. In addition the present active participle belongs to Class IV.

In other parts of the paradigm, some forms are sparsely attested. The following chart lists those forms with the greatest attestation, or which can be reconstructed with the most certainty based on extant forms.

Present III   Singular   Dual   Plural
1   хочю   хочєвѣ   хочємъ
2   хочєши   хочєта   хочєтє
3   хочєть   хочєта   -
             
Present IV            
1   -   хотивѣ   хотимъ
2   -   хотита   хотитє
3   -   хотита   хотять
             
Imperative            
1   -   -   -
2   хошь   -   -
3   хошь   -   -
             
Pres. Act. Part.            
Masc./Neut. N   хотя        
Fem. N   хотячи        
             
Pres. Pass. Part.            
Masc. N   -        
             
Imperfect            
1   хотяахъ   хотяаховѣ   хотяахомъ
2   хотяашє   хотяашєта   хотяашєтє
3   хотяашє   хотяашєта   хотяаху
             
Aorist            
1   -   -   хочомъ
2   хочє   -   -
3   хочє   -   -
             
Past Act. Part.            
Masc./Neut. N   -        
Fem. N   -        
             
Resultative Part.            
Masc. N   хотѣлъ        
             
Past Pass. Part.            
Masc. N   -        
             
Infinitive   хотѣти        
             
Supine   -        
             
Verbal Noun   хотѣньѥ        
43. The Instrumental Case

The Old Russian instrumental case, as its name suggests, marks the instrument, or means by which, an event takes place. This parallels English use of the preposition with in statements such as He hit me with his shoe. The instrumental also enjoys a sociative connotation, i.e. a notion of accompaniment. This also parallels English use of with in expressions such as I went to the beach with my family. Such sociative uses of the instrumental, however, generally employ the preposition съ 'with' in Old Russian. The following examples show the instrumental of means.

  • ѡтроци свѣньлъжи исодѣли сѧ суть ѡружьємъ и порты 'Sveinald's retainers are clothed with swords and garments' (Death of Igor).
  • а вы хощете измрети гладъмь 'but you wish to die by means of hunger' (Olga's Revenge).
  • ради даемъ медъмь и скорою 'gladly we will furnish (you) with honey and fur(s)' (Olga's Revenge).
  • и повєлѣ къ коемужьдо голуби и къ воробиеви привязывати цѣри, обьртывающе въ платъкы малы, нитъкою повьрзывающе къ коемужьдо ихъ 'And she commanded them to fasten sulfur to each pigeon and to each sparrow, wrapping it in a small cloth, tying it with a thread to each of them' (Olga's Revenge).

Old Russian also occasionally employs the instrumental to mark the cause or reason for an event or action. Consider the following example of the causal instrumental: тѣмь глаголаху на пєрєвозъ на Кыевъ 'for this (reason) they would say, "to Kii's ferry"' (Primary Chronicle).

As we have seen with numerous other cases, some verbs employ the instrumental case to mark the complement where we might otherwise expect a direct object in the accusative. The following provide examples of the use of the instrumental with certain verbs.

  • полем же жившемъ ѡсобѣ, и володѣющемъ и родъӏ своими иже и до сеє братьѣ бѧху полѧне 'with the Polianians living by themselves and ruling their own families, even up to this (time) brothers were the Polianians' (Primary Chronicle).
  • жєняися пѹщеницею 'whosoever marries the divorced woman...' (Ostromir Gospel, Matthew 5.32, cf. Sreznevskij, 1898, vol. 1, p. 858).

Modern Russian often employs the instrumental case to mark a noun or adjective predicated to the subject. This usage is a later development within the history of Russian, emerging roughly around the 15th century. Consider the following late example of the predicative instrumental: бѣ бо у Ярополка жєна Грикинѣ, бяше была преже черницею 'for Jaropolk had a Greek wife who was formerly a nun' (Novgorod Chronicle [Novgorodskaja Letopisĭ], from the 15th century, cf. Matthews, 1960, p.226).

Within Old Russian, such predication generally employs the nominative case (cf. Section 25).

44. Numerals
44.1. Cardinal Numbers

The cardinal numbers allow us to count things: 1 book, 2 books, 3 books, etc. Old Russian shows two basic formations when expressing cardinal numbers: some cardinals function as adjectives modifying the things they are counting, others function as nouns in their own right. When the numerals function as adjectives, a phrase such as two books functions in the same way as a phrase like blue books: the numeral functions as an adjective agreeing with the word it modifies in gender, case, and number (singular, dual, or plural). By contrast, when the numerals themselves function as nouns, the thing which they are counting is represented as a dependent genitive. For example, rather than saying five books with five functioning as an adjective, Old Russian says something akin to a five of books. That is, the numeral represents a group, and the genitive plural specifies what the group consists of: a five-group of books.

In broad outline, the numbers 1 through 4 function as adjectives, while 5 though 10 function as nouns with dependent genitives. The teens roughly repeat the same structure, with 11 through 14 as adjectives, 15 through 19 as nouns.

44.1.1 The Numeral 1

Old Russian represents the number 1 with an adjective showing a pronominal declension: одинъ 'one'. The declension is as follows.

    Masculine   Neuter   Feminine
N Sg.   одинъ   одино   одина
A   одинъ   одино   одину
G   одиного   одиного   одиноѣ
L   одиномь   одиномь   одинои
D   одиному   одиному   одинои
I   одинѣмь   одинѣмь   одиною
V            
             
N Du.   одина   одинѣ   одинѣ
A   одина   одинѣ   одинѣ
G   одиною   одиною   одиною
L   одиною   одиною   одиною
D   одинѣма   одинѣма   одинѣма
I   одинѣма   одинѣма   одинѣма
V            
             
N Pl.   одини   одина   одины
A   одины   одина   одины
G   одинѣхъ   одинѣхъ   одинѣхъ
L   одинѣхъ   одинѣхъ   одинѣхъ
D   одинѣмъ   одинѣмъ   одинѣмъ
I   одинѣми   одинѣми   одинѣми
V            

The stem одьн- may alternate with the stem один- in any of the forms of the above paradigm. At times one encounters the Old Church Slavic stem єдин-.

44.1.2 The Numeral 2

Old Russian represents the number 2 by the adjective дъва 'two'. This adjective quite naturally occurs solely in the dual number, agreeing with the word it modifies in gender, case, and number. The following table lists the forms.

    Masculine   Neuter   Feminine
N Du.   дъва   дъвѣ   дъвѣ
A   дъва   дъвѣ   дъвѣ
G   дъвою   дъвою   дъвою
L   дъвою   дъвою   дъвою
D   дъвѣма   дъвѣма   дъвѣма
I   дъвѣма   дъвѣма   дъвѣма
V            

The word оба 'both' follows the same declension. Some texts also show variant forms such as the genitive dual обѣю.

44.1.3 The Numeral 3

The adjective трьѥ 'three' represents the number 3. This adjective occurs only in the plural. The table below lists the forms.

    Masculine   Neuter   Feminine
N Pl.   трьѥ   три   три
A   три   три   три
G   трьи   трьи   трьи
L   трьхъ   трьхъ   трьхъ
D   трьмъ   трьмъ   трьмъ
I   трьми   трьми   трьми
V            

The front jer in the masculine nominative plural may yield триѥ as a result of standing in tense position. The genitive plural трьи is phonetically [trĭjĭ] and so may appear as трии owing to the tense position of the first jer, or as трєи as a result of the first jer falling in strong position. Due to the influence of pronominal declensions in which genitive and locative plural forms coincide, we also find occasionally the locative form трьхъ used in place of the genitive. In addition we at times find the form трєма for the instrumental plural.

As an example from the Ostromir Gospel, take три мѣсѧцѧ 'three months', where both words are masculine accusative plural.

44.1.4 The Numeral 4

Old Russian represents the number 4 with the adjective чєтырє 'four', agreeing with the noun it modifies in gender, case, and the plural number. The following table lists the forms.

    Masculine   Neuter   Feminine
N Pl.   чєтырє   чєтыри   чєтыри
A   чєтыри   чєтыри   чєтыри
G   чєтыръ   чєтыръ   чєтыръ
L   чєтырьхъ   чєтырьхъ   чєтырьхъ
D   чєтырьмъ   чєтырьмъ   чєтырьмъ
I   чєтырьми   чєтырьми   чєтырьми
V            

The genitive form чєтыръ is occasionally replaced by чєтырьи, or with fully vocalized strong jer, чєтырєи. In addition we occasionally find чєтырьма for the instrumental.

As an example again from the Ostromir Gospel, take чєтъӏрє мѣсѧци 'four months', where both words are masculine nominative plural.

44.1.5 The Numerals 5, ..., 10

The numerals 5 through 9 all occur as feminine i-stem nouns which govern a genitive plural of the thing counted. The numbers are as follows:

  • 5: пять 'five',
  • 6: сєдмь 'six',
  • 7: сємь 'seven',
  • 8: осмь or восмь 'eight',
  • 9: дєвять 'nine'.

These nouns follow the declension of the feminine i-stem noun кость 'bone' (cf. Section 11.1). For example, пять 'five' shows пяти in the genitive, locative, and dative singular, and пятью in the instrumental singular.

The word дєсять 'ten' represents the numeral 10. This largely shows the forms proper to the declension of consonant stems (cf. Section 16).

    Singular   Dual   Plural
N Pl.   дєсять   дєсяти   дєсятє
A   дєсять   дєсяти   дєсяти
G   дєсятє   дєсяту   дєсятъ
L   дєсятє   дєсяту   дєсятьхъ
D   дєсяти   дєсятьма   дєсятьмъ
I   дєсятью   дєсятьма   дєсятьми
V            

Again the Ostromir Gospel provides an example: подобьно... дєсѧти дѣвъ 'similar... to ten virgins', or more literally 'similar... to ten of virgins'. Here дєсѧти is the dative singular, while дѣвъ 'of virgins' is the genitive plural.

44.1.6 The Teens

The formation of the teens 11, ..., 19 follows almost exactly the constructions of the numerals 1 through 10. Viewed from the perspective of English, the teens read one on ten (eleven), two on ten (twelve), three on ten (thirteen), etc. Thus the grammatical construction in Old Russian is exactly the grammatical construction encountered with the individual numerals 1, 2, 3, etc., the only difference being the addition of the phrase on ten. Specifically, the numerals are as follows.

  • 11: одинъ на дєсяти masc., одино на дєсяти neut., одина на дєсяти fem.;
  • 12: дъва на дєсяти masc., дъвѣ на дєсяти neut., дъвѣ на дєсяти fem. dual;
  • 13: трьѥ на дєсяти masc., три на дєсяти neut., три на дєсяти fem. plural;
  • 14: чєтырє на дєсяти masc., чєтыри на дєсяти neut., чєтыри на дєсяти fem. plural;
  • 15: пять на дєсяти;
  • 16: сєдмь на дєсяти;
  • 17: сємь на дєсяти;
  • 18: осмь на дєсяти or восмь на дєсяти;
  • 19: дєвять на дєсяти.

The Ostromir Gospel again provides an example: яко дъвоѭ на дєсѧтє лѣтѹ 'about twelve years old'. Literally this reads 'roughly of two years on ten', where the dual adjective дъвоѭ, in the genitive, agrees with the dual genitive лѣтѹ.

44.1.7 The Decades

Old Russian constructs the decades 20, 30, ..., 90 as groups of tens. Thus the numeral 20 is rendered by two tens, 30 by three tens, 40 by four tens, 50 by five (of) tens, etc. Thus we return to the problem of counting with the numerals 1, 2, 3, ..., 9, but now the thing counted is a group of ten: дєсять. Hence the decades also break down into two groups: those where дєсять is modified by an adjective, and those where дєсять is in the genitive plural, depending on the numeral. The specific forms are as follows.

  • 20: дъва дєсяти. This has nominative and accusative dual дъва дєсяти, genitive and locative дъвою дєсяту, dative and instrumental дъвѣма дєсятьма. We also find alternate constructions with the genitive plural: дъвоѭ дєсѧтъ, literally 'of/on two of tens'.
  • 30: три дєсятє, where дєсятє is the nominative plural.
  • 40: чєтырє дєсятє, where we note that the form чєтырє suggests the collocation is viewed as masculine plural. Consider an example taken from the Novgorod First Chronicle: и чєтъӏрьдєсят цєрковъ огорѣ 'and forty churches burned'. Here we see that the numeral 40 as a unit follows the genitive construction encountered with the numerals 5 through 10: namely the phrase literally translates as 'and forty of churches burned'.
  • 50: пятьдєсятъ, where дєсятъ is a genitive governed by пять: literally 'five of tens'.
  • 60: шєстьдєсятъ. We also find constructions where both elements are declined: съ шєстьюдєсятью мужь 'with sixty (of) men'.
  • 70: сємьдєсятъ or сєдмьдєсять. For example, по сємидєсятъ жєнъ 'seventy wives apiece' (Primary Chronicle), literally 'according to seven of tens of wives', where сємь is in the dative in accordance with the preposition по.
  • 80: осмьдєсятъ.
  • 90: дєвяносто. This term breaks from the preceding patterns. Here дєвяносто is a neuter twofold noun. We find for example двѣ... дєвяностѣ мужь '180... men', but more literally 'two 90s of men'. We also find the noun with the masculine gender: два дєвяноста, masculine nominative dual. But we do find attestations which follow the pattern set by the preceding decades, where 90 is viewed as nine (of) tens: нє оставить ли дєвѧти дєсѧтъ дєвѧти 'will he not leave the ninety nine'. Here both instances of дєвѧти take the genitive case as direct objects of the negated verb, while дєсѧтъ is genitive plural dependent upon the first дєвѧти.

44.1.8 The Hundreds

The Old Russian system for the hundreds parallels that for the decades. Here the o-stem neuter noun съто 'hundred' takes over the role that дєсять 'ten' plays in the decades. The numerals are as follows.

  • 100: съто, a neuter twofold noun. The thing counted is in the genitive plural.
  • 200: дъвѣ сътѣ, where both elements decline according to the twofold paradigm. The thing enumerated is in the genitive plural.
  • 300: три съта, with both elements declining as twofold neuters in the plural. The thing enumerated is in the genitive plural.
  • 400: чєтыри съта, with the construction paralleling that of 300.
  • 500: пять сътъ. Here, as with other constructions based on 5, пять is a noun governing сътъ in the genitive plural: literally five of hundreds. The thing counted is in the genitive plural.
  • 600: шєсть сътъ, with the construction paralleling that of 500.
  • 700: сємь сътъ, as the preceding.
  • 800: осмь сътъ, as the preceding.
  • 900: дєвять сътъ, as the preceding.

44.1.9 The Thousands

The Old Russian word for thousand is тысяча. This follows the declension of the ja-stem feminine nouns. The noun takes its case from the construction in which it finds itself, and the thing counted is placed in the genitive plural.

Old Russian employs the word тьма in both the numeric sense ten thousand and the general sense of an extremely large quantity. This too takes its case from its grammatical role in its clause, and the thing enumerated is placed in the genitive plural.

44.2. The Ordinals

The ordinal numbers, as their name suggests, are used to place things in order. That is, they serve to specify what element is first, which is second, third, and so on. With the exception of трєтьи 'third', the ordinals for 1 through 10 are hard twofold definite adjectives:

  • 1st: пьрвыи;
  • 2nd: въторыи or другыи;
  • 3rd: трєтьи, declined as a soft twofold adjective;
  • 4th: чєтвьртыи;
  • 5th: пятыи;
  • 6th: шєстыи;
  • 7th: сєдьмыи or сємыи;
  • 8th: осмыи;
  • 9th: дєвятыи;
  • 10th: дєсятыи.
45. Verb Use: Non-Past

In Old Russian we must take care to distinguish between tenses as represented by morphology and tenses as represented by meaning or sense. In Old Russian the term present tense first and foremost denotes a set of morphological endings: -у, -еши, -еть, etc. As it turns out, for the most part when a verb employs these endings, the resulting sense is one of present time, of talking about the here-and-now. In such instances form and meaning converge. But Old Russian has no future tense with distinct endings or a special verbal suffix, for instance. Instead, it employs the same endings, and even the same stem, which pertain to the morphological present tense. Thus we find "present tense" forms where the actual meaning is in fact future. And in this we find that the term present tense, when applied to the endings -у, -еши, -еть, etc., is something of a misnomer. Really they are present-future endings. Or more typical terminology is to call this set of endings non-past.

Part of the distinction in sense between present and future comes from the particular interaction between the representation of an action by means of a verbal root and the use of the present tense morphology. This matter of the "representation of an action" frequently goes by the name verbal aspect. We will touch briefly on this topic below and in Section 50.

45.1. The Present Tense

More than anything the Old Russian present tense is a morphological category. Verbs conjugated in the present tense may take on a range of senses. Primarily, as luck would have it, the dominant sense is to signify actions or states occurring contemporaneously with the utterance: that is, a true present tense, saying that the action is happening now.

As a point of comparison, note that the English present tense generally does not have such an interpretation (except with a restricted class of verbs, such as to be and others). If one says in English I walk, this need not refer to now, as the sentence is uttered; rather it typically refers to a habitual action, such as I walk to the bus stop on Tuesday mornings. In order to elicit the sense of a true present, that is of an action ongoing at the time of utterance, English must generally employ the continuous present: I am walking (right now).

The Old Russian morphological present, in contrast to English, can indeed function as a true present. It may be translated either by the English simple present or continuous present as context suggests. Consider the following examples of the Old Russian true present.

  • азъ словомь симъ молюсѧ Богѹ 'With this word I am praying to God' (Alphabet Poem).
  • ѥгожє вьсѧ добръӏя дѣтєли и подвигъӏ прилагающє сихъ ѹгодьницѣхъ по єдиномѹ нє постъӏдимъсѧ '... of whom we are not ashamed comparing all his great deeds and struggles, one by one, to those of the virtuous men' (Pannonian Legend).
  • и есть могыла его у искоростѣня града въ дєрєвѣхъ и до сего дьне 'and his grave is near the city Iskorosten in Dereva even to this day' (Death of Igor).
  • по чьто идеши опять 'What do you come back for?' (Death of Igor).
  • а щекъ сѣдяше на горѣ идеже нынѣ зоветься щековица 'and Shchek settled on a hill where now it is called Shchekovica' (Primary Chronicle).

Parallel to the English present, the Old Russian present tense may take on a gnomic connotation, representing an action as always obtaining. Take for example the present tense in the English saying Haste makes waste. The present tense verb makes does not mark the event as happening now, or even as being habitual. Rather it marks a general truth, supposed to be valid at all times. Consider the following uses of the Old Russian present as a gnomic present: и съдумавъше дрєвєляне съ кънязьмь своимь Малъмь, аще ся въвадить вълкъ въ овьцѣ, то въӏносить вьсе стадо, аще не убиють єго "and the Derevlians sought counsel with their prince Mal: 'If a wolf introduces itself among the sheep, then it will carry off the entire flock, if they do not kill it'" (Death of Igor).

We also find in Old Russian some instances of what might be termed a historical present. In English this term denotes the stereotyped use of the present found in jokes and stories surrounding the pub: I was sitting having a drink last night and this guy walks into the bar wearing a pink fedora.... Here context makes it clear that, even though walks is an instance of the present tense, the action which it depicts occurs in past time. Old Russian too employs this type of historical present, as the following example suggests: слышавъше древляне яко опять идеть 'The Derevlians heard that he is coming back' (Death of Igor). This may be a historical present, employing the present where we might otherwise expect a past tense, since the past participle слышавъше makes clear that the hearing of the report had already occurred. However we may also suppose the use of the present derives from a tendency toward direct quotation: "The Derevlians heard, 'he is coming back!'". In Old Russian яко 'that' may introduce direct as well as indirect quotation, whereas the parallel English word that only introduces indirect quotation.

In addition we occasionally find in Old Russian forms belonging to the present tense where context would lead one to expect an imperative form. Consider the following example of the present in place of the imperative: поимемъ жену єго вольгу за кнѧзь свои малъ 'Let us take his wife Olga for our prince Mal', i.e. '... to marry our prince Mal' (Olga's Revenge). The form поимемъ, from the verb по-яти 'to take', is strictly speaking the first person plural present indicative active. However, this could simply be scribal variation representing the normalized form поимѣмъ of the imperative.

Finally the present forms may frequently be used with future significance. This often results from the interaction between verbal aspect and the tense system. The following example shows a prefixed perfective verb used as future: идѣте съ данию домови, а азъ възбращюся и похожю єще 'Go home with the tribute; but I will turn back and will walk back yet again' (Death of Igor).

The next section will discuss further details surrounding the representation of events in future time in Old Russian.

45.2. The Future Tense

As a strict morphological paradigm, Old Russian exhibits no specific future tense. Rather the present tense forms frequently serve to denote future events, parallel to English usage of present continuous forms as in I am going to the airport tomorrow, or parallel to the German present tense as in Wir rufen Sie dann an 'We'll call you up then'. Many noteworthy scholars have proposed that Old Russian exhibits a system of verbal aspect in which perfective verbs conjugated in the (morphological) present tense have future meaning. But even the most cogent of these arguments encounter difficulties with certain apparent exceptions. Consider the following example.

Chapter   Ostromir Gospel   Greek Text   English Translation
John 3.12a   ащє зємьна рѣхъ вамъ и нє вѣрѹѥтє   ei ta epigeia eipon humi:n kai ou pisteuete   If I told you earthly things and you do not believe
John 3.12b   како ащє рєкѫ вамъ нєбєсьнаӏа вѣрѹѥтє   po:s ean eipo: humi:n ta epourania pisteusete   then how, if I tell you the heavenly things, will you believe?

In the above we find one and the same present tense form, вѣрѹѥтє, translating both a Greek present tense form, pisteuete 'you believe', and a future tense form, pisteusete 'you will believe'. Various possible resolutions present themselves:

  • Inherently perfective: we might suppose the verb вѣровати 'to believe' is inherently perfective, perhaps by means of the -ова- suffix. Thus the present tense of вѣровати would naturally have future meaning, translating pisteusete without problem. However the fact that the same form translates a present tense, pisteuete, means we must interpret the Greek form not as a true present (since an Old Russian perfective present would not have such a sense), but rather as a gnomic present: 'you never believe me (when I've told you the heavenly things)'.
  • Non-participation: the verb вѣровати 'to believe' might not yet have participated in the budding aspectual system at this early stage of Old Russian.

Each of the above interpretations will have its adherents. It therefore seems advisable at the outset to admit for any Old Russian verb the possibility that the present tense forms may have future meaning, either simply because the morphology allowed this in a manner akin to English or German, or because of the perfectivity of the underlying verb. On a case-by-case basis the reader may then decide what factor or factors most contribute to the futurity of the form.

Luckily Old Russian also employs some periphrastic constructions to express the future in a manner less controversial than the above. In particular the verbs начяти, почяти, учяти, each 'to begin'; стати 'to stand', also 'to become'; хотѣти 'to wish'; имѣти, имати 'to have' may each take an infinitive complement to form a periphrastic future tense. Constructions involving имѣти or имати can have not only the sense of a simple future, but also the sense of obligation inherent in the parallel English construction to have to (do something). Similarly constructions with хотѣти could denote a desire, as in to want to (do something), or a simple future, as in will (do something). Consider the following examples.

  • который князь почьнеть хотѣти... отъяти 'whichever prince shall wish... to take away' (Gramota Mstislava Volodimiroviča, cf. Matthews, 1960, p. 205).
  • Христосъ имать сохранити тя 'Christ shall preserve thee' (Laurentian Codex, 1377; cf. Matthews, 1960, p. 205).
  • но хочю вѣ почтити наутрия 'but I shall honor you tomorrow' (Olga's Revenge, Laurentian Codex, 1377; cf. Matthews, 1960, p. 205).

The verbal forms буду, будеши, etc., usually assigned to the verb быти 'to be', are the only verb forms in Old Russian with explicitly future meaning. Consider the following example.

  • нъ не побѣженъ будеши 'but thou shalt not be defeated' (Nifont, cf. Matthews, 1960, p. 204).
  • толи не будеть мєжю нами мира, елиже камень начьнеть плавати, а хъмель грянути 'There will not be peace between us at such time as the stone will float and hops (will) sink' (Primary Chronicle). Or more literally, '... such time as the stone begins to float and the hops (begins) to sink'. This clearly highlights the parallelism between the use of буду on the one hand and the periphrastic future constructions on the other.

Nevertheless the forms morphologically belong to the present tense. Moreover, unlike modern Russian, Old Russian typically does not employ буду 'I shall be' to form a periphrastic future tense with the infinitive. This is a later development.