Sunday, December 23, 2012

United Aid for Azerbaijan - social campaign

UAFA has produced a wonderful video to promote disability awareness in Azerbaijan. The video has subtitles in Azerbaijani. See if you can follow it.

I have written out the text below and follow it with my translation. I hope I've got everything correct. Let me know if there are errors please!





Monday, December 10, 2012

News article

News about the oil industry is not very interesting, but this article is a good translation and reading exercise since it has many examples of possessive case. From BBC Azeri.

Rövnəq Abdullayev: BP-SOCAR əməkdaşlığı davam edir

Rovneq Abdullayev: BP-Socar collaboration continues

Azərbaycan Dövlət Neft Şirkətinin Prezidenti Rövnəq Abdullayev cümə axşamı Britaniya Parlamentinin Lordlar Palatasında şirkətin enerji strategiyası və dünya enerjisinin vəziyyəti barədə çıxış edib.
The Azerbaijan National Oil Company's president, Rovneq Adbullayev, spoke to the British House of Lords on Thursday about the company's energy strategy and the situation of energy in the world.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

BBC videos - English and Azerbaijani

I noticed a translation of an interesting video that I saw on BBC's English website. The subject is Uruguay's president, Jose Mujica, who is dubbed "the poorest president in the world" by international media.

Here is the English version: Uruquay's Jose Mujica - 'the world's poorest president'.

Here is the Azerbaijani version: Dünyanın ən "yoxsul" prezidenti.

Əmr forması - Imperative

I have long been unhappy with the way books present the imperative mood in Azerbaijani. With the help of my friend Tağı I have come to see that it should not be presented as it is in the texts that I have.

Let me explain...

This form, known as Felin əmr forması, Əmr forması, or Əmr cümləsi, is usually presented in one of two ways:

1. Commands to you singular and you plural as we have in English.
Gəl! = Come!
Getmə = Don't go.
İcazə verin = Please allow [me] [to pass by].

2. A complete set of imperative "commands" conjugated for all three persons, singular and plural.

Both are confusing for native English speakers in my opinion, because the imperative is really used in different ways in Azerbaijani. It can be a command, a request, a suggestion, or a question. Thus, it seems better (for those who hate grammar especially) to just think in terms of command/suggestion versus question. And let's face it - the translation for the question is often "Let me, let him, let us, let them". Number one, people just don't talk like this anymore. Number two, Let's go! is a command, not a question - it belongs in the first section given above. Number three, Let me get you... and Let them get you... are really subjunctive, not imperative. And most English speakers would simply say "He/they should get you some..."  Finally, the first person singular use of this in Azerbaijani seems to me to always be a question. So,...


Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Word Order in Azerbaijani


Another lovely post from our guest author Alef:

In general, the usual word order in Azerbaijani is Subject-Object-Verb. For example:

Mən azərbaycanca danışıram.

However, Azerbaijani word order is very flexible and you can manipulate it depending on what you want to emphasize and how formal or poetic you want your sentence to be. As sentences get longer and more complex, this flexibility of word order decreases but even then it is possible to change it. Let’s see how many ways of saying I study the Azerbaijani language there would be:

Mən Azərbaycan dilini öyrənirəm.
Öyrənirəm Azərbaycan dilini mən.
Mən öyrənirəm Azərbaycan dilini.
Öyrənirəm mən Azərbaycan dilini.
Azərbaycan dilini öyrənirəm mən.
Azərbaycan dilini mən öyrənirəm.


Sunday, December 2, 2012

A thematic dictionary for beginners

Thanks to Tağı for putting this together. It's trilingual - Azerbaijani, English, and French.





Buyurun. Here you go. Le voilà!


Saturday, December 1, 2012

Felləri - İndiki zamanda təsrif edin

Try to conjugate the following verbs in the present tense. Thanks to my new friend Tağı for sending me this list.

1. oxumaq
2. yazmaq
3. baxmaq
4. görmək
5. eşitmək
6. darıxmaq
7. idman etmək
8. rəqs etmək
9. yemək bişirmək
10. ağlamaq
11. silmək
12. süpürmək
13. geyinmək
14. soyunmaq
15. yatmaq
16. yuxudan oyanmaq
17. istirahət etmək
18. ümid etmək
19. inanmaq
20. aldatmaq


Sunday, November 11, 2012

Imperative Mood of Verbs


Verbs in Azerbaijani have imperative mood; it is used to command or ask for something. You can make a singular imperative of any verb by eliminating the suffix of the infinitive (-maq, -mək). Once you do that you will get the root of the verb.  For example:

Getmək = to go. Get. = Go.
Oturmaq = to sit. Otur. = Sit (down).
Təslim olmaq = to surrender.  Təslim ol! = Surrender!

[Should you buy apples? Wait and see...]

In the news - Qızın Qaçırılması

I was pleased to find a new free newspaper in Baku - written largely in Azerbaijani. It's the "New Baku Post - pulsuz". I picked up a copy at a display in the Park Bulvar Mall. I'm assuming because it is free I can reproduce it here as another translation exercise. This article is on the topic of the abduction of young women (usually by guys who want to marry them).  Apparently there were 10 cases in the first 6 months of this year and 16 in 2011. All were committed with the goal of marriage.


Saturday, October 27, 2012

Arşın mal alan - Gülçöhrənin nəğməsi

This song frankly defeats me. What is this cida??? It can't mean "pike". That just doesn't make sense. And why are so many of these words not even in the dictionary? Someone please explain!

 14. Gülçöhrənin nəğməsi.


Bülbüli-zarəm gülü ruxsari alindən cida;
Tutiyi laləm şəkər nisbət məqalindən cida – 2
Der idim səbr eylərəm, olsam camalından cida, – 2
Bilmədim dişvar imiş olmaq vüsalindən cida, – 2
Ax!.. aman, aman, aman, aman, canım.
Aman, yarım aman;
Bilmədim dişvar imiş olmaq vüsalindən cida, – 2
Yar gəl, yar gəl, yar gəl, yar gəl!
Əqlimi tərk eylədim fəzli kəmalından cida.
Dönmüşəm mən müflisə cahi cəlalından cida – 2
Tirə oldu ruzigarım zülfü xalından cida.
Ax!.. aman, aman, aman, aman, canım aman, yarım aman;
Oldu səhra mənzilim vəhşi qəzalindən cida. – 2
Yar gəl, yar gəl, yar gəl, yar gəl.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Arşın mal alan - Gülçöhrənin naləsi


This lament is sung by Gulchora in the culminating tragic moment before the "cloth peddler" rescues her. It  has got to be one of the saddest and most powerful songs ever written. In fact, every time I listen to it, tears stream down my face. Every time! Even before I knew what the lyrics meant...! Now that I understand the lyrics, it is inevitable that I cry at this beautiful song. The composer, it seems obvious to me, was a great supporter of women and their right to choose not only their "heyət yoldaşi" but also their role in life.  

I was so pleased to find the lyrics online. Visit http://arshin.musigi-dunya.az/ for the full libretto and other information in both Azerbaijani and English. To listen to a beautiful rendition, click this link: 


Below are the lyrics and my humble attempt at translation.

 20. Gülçöhrənin naləsi. 
Hicran dərdi, fələk verdi – 2
Bunca cəfanı layiq gördü – 2
Yoxdur taqət səbrə halət, – 2
Ölmək yaxşıdır nə ki, bu zillət – 2
Ey xuda rəhm et, ey xuda rəhm et,
Qıl mədəd yarəb, mən yazığa rəhm et.
Ey xuda rəhm et, ey xuda rəhm et,
Qıl mədəd yarəb, mən yazığa, rəhm et.

Yox, mən bu hala davam edə bilmərəm. Daha məndə tab və taqət yoxdur. Hamısından yaxşısı budur ki, bir kərəlik özümü boğum, öldürüm. Canım qurtarsın.

Gulchora’s lament.

Fate has brought me this terrible separation
This torment it has deemed will be my lot
I have no strength or patience left
Better to die than to suffer like this
O God help me, help me,
Dear Lord save me, have mercy on me.

No, I simply can’t go on. I have no more strength or endurance. Better to hang myself and end it all. 

From the film.

Monday, October 22, 2012

"O olmasın, bu olsun" - Birinci Pərdə - 3

Sənəm - Ax, deyəsən ağa gəlir.
Oh, it seems that the master has come.

Sərvər - Gülnaz, hələ ki, xudahafiz. Sən mən deyəndən çıxma, atana başqa söz demə.
Now Gulnaz, good-bye. Follow what I have told you to do, don't say anything to your father.

Gülnaz - Xudahafiz.
Good-bye.

Sərvər gedir.
Server leaves.

"O olmasın, bu olsun" - Birinci Pərdə - 2

Sənəm - Bircə o gün ola idi ki, sizin toyunuzda süzə-süzə oynaya idim.
If only the day would come when I could dance at your wedding.

Sərvər - İnşaallah, bu yaxında oynarsan.
God willing, you will dance soon.

Sənəm - Necə? Yaxında toy eyləyirsənmi?
How? Are you getting married soon?

Sunday, October 21, 2012

"O olmasın, bu olsun!" - Birinci Pərdə - 1

I am only doing the dialogue from this scene because the song uses very old words or foreign words that I can't find in the dictionary. The first scene is a conversation between the young lovers.

Gülnaz - Sərvər, bu gün səni çox kefsiz görürəm, nə olub məgər?
Server, you seem in low spirits today. What's wrong?

Sərvər - Doğru deyirsən, mən dünəndən bəridir ki, fikirdəyəm.
You're right. Since yesterday I have been lost in thought.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Kon-Tiki və mən - New bilingual publication

A new publication from Azerbaijan International. You can order copies from their website here:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-18071830

The book is a bilingual translation of the original work by Erik Hesselberg, which was published in Norwegian in 1949 as Kon-Tiki og jeg.

The book is published for children, so the language is not so difficult for an English learner of Azerbaijani. The story is interesting and told in a breezy, informal style. There are original drawings throughout. What is most exciting about this publication is that it seems to be the first of many more - one hopes! The book is labelled as "Children's Books Series, Vol.1" - "Uşaq kitabları silsiləsi, İ cild". Let's hope we see more soon.

Two Things To Know Well If You Study Azerbaijani


All languages have something in terms of their grammar or vocabulary that if one understands well, communicating becomes much better and easier. Azerbaijani has two of them. One is the  rule of harmony and the other is the system of endings or suffixes.

The Rule or Law of Harmony defines what vowels follow one another in words and how they do that. Understanding it is very important because it helps one to know why most suffixes have two or four forms, and what form goes with what word. It also gives you clues about the origin of words which matters when you are not sure whether a suffix should be joined at the end of word or at the beginning. As an example let’s look at the plural ending -lar, -lər.
Examples: Kitablar = books. Evlər = houses. How about the plural of “dahi” (genius) does it take “-lar” or “-lər”? The only way to find out that is to learn the rule of harmony.   

Suffixes matter too due to the fact that almost all words connect and make sentences through them. Even the simplest possible sentences require suffixes and it is common for a word to take three or even four endings. Unless you know suffixes and their features it might be difficult for native speakers to understand you. Sometimes, by adding one or two suffixes to a word you can express a whole sentence. Here is an example.
Biz = we
Biz+im = our
Bizim+ki = ours (as in “this book is ours”)
Bizimki+lər = our (indicates plurality of objects that belong to us as in our books)
Bizimkilər+dən = from ours
Bizimkilərdən+dir = It is from us. (It is from that which belongs to us.)
Bizimkilərdəndir+mi = Is it from us?  (Is it from that which belongs to us?)

We have one root and six endings in this word.

So, learn these two well and Azerbaijani will become easy.

Guest Author,
Alef

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Bəxtiyar - Scene 8


In this scene, Baxtiyar gets a letter from Yousif, which he reads to his co-worker friends in the mess hall near the oil wells. A man arrives announcing a singing contest. Baxtiyar's friends encourage him to try out. 


Saturday, September 22, 2012

Bəxtiyar - Scene 6 & 7


Sasha and Baxtiyar leave the dance together and talk in a park overlooking the city. Actually, the scene was shot very close to where I live. Baxtiyar has fallen in love, that's obvious. The following scene sees a very upset Baxtiyar say good-bye to Sasha at the train station, knowing that she is going off to university with his rival, Yousif.


Your phone can help you learn Azerbaijani!

After years with a clunky old Motorola, I finally bought a new phone. I had been holding out for a phone that I could use Azerbaijani on. Finally my friend Nigar took me to a phone store where I found a Nokia 302. It is great. You can very easily type with Azerbaijani letters. You just hold down the symbol key (sym) and hit the letter that most represents what you want to write. For example, to type Ə you hold down sym+e. To get a ş - sym+s. Easy.

Be a guest author!

I am writing to all those native Azerbaijani speakers who are so kind to post comments to the blog. Your help is really appreciated. If you would like to become a guest author on my blog, please drop me an email at colleen.macdonell at gmail. You will need a gmail account for this to work.

It would be very exciting to have people collaborating on this project!

New words

The wonderfully knowledgeable and articulate Alef Noon has been commenting on some of my posts. I just noticed this one from last week. I'll define the new words and see if I can find the Arabic patterns...

Alef said: "Would you mind finding the meaning of the words given below whenever you have time? All of them are Arabic loanwords and they follow the rules of Arabic grammar:"

müzakirə (root: Z-K-R. Pattern: mü-Z-a-K-i-R-ə) = discussion, debate

müsadirə (root: S-D-R. pattern: same as above) = confiscation, expropriation

münaqişə (can you find root and pattern?) Root: N-Q-Ş. Pattern: mü-N-a-Q-i-Ş-ə = argument, controversy, conflict, dispute

münasibət - Root: N-S-B. Pattern: mü-N-a-S-i-B-ət = attitude, regard, consideration

mühasibat - Root: H-S-B. Pattern: mü-H-a-S-i-B-at = book-keeping

müvazinət - Root: V-Z-N. Pattern: mü-V-a-Z-i-N-ət = balance, equilibrium

dəlil - Root: D-L-L. Pattern: D-ə-L-i-L = argument, reason, evidence, proof

zəlil - Root: Z-L-L. Pattern: Z-ə-L-i-L = cringing, miserable, abject

əlil - Root: L-L. Pattern: ə-L-i-L = disabled, invalid

təəssüb - Root: T-SS-B. Pattern: T-əə-SS-ü-B = fanaticism, partiality to, bias

təəccüb - Root: T-CC-B. Pattern: T-əə-CC-ü-B = surprise, wonder, wonderment, amazement

təcəssüm = Root: C-SS-M. Pattern: tə-C-ə-SS-ü-M = embodiment, personification, incarnation

tərənnüm = Root: R-NN-M. Pattern: tə-R-ə-NN-ü-M = praise

Bəxtiyar - Scene 4 & 5


The young Baxtiyar writes Rza Dayi about the children's plans. He will go to work on the oil platforms, Sasha and Yousif will continue their studies. This fades into a scene with the grown-up Baxtiyar at work, a scene largely taken up by the song "Dörd Dost". Scene 5 is in the evening. The young oil workers are dressed in black suits and white shirts, heading for a dance. Sasha pulls Baxtiyar onto the dance floor, much to Yousif's annoyance. 


Sunday, September 16, 2012

Bəxtiyar - Scene 3

The kids visit the hospital. The scene opens with a man rising from his bed as he hears singing from the common room below. He reaches for his crutches and heads downstairs. Baxtiyar is singing a song about the glorious motherland (Russia, natch) to the piano accompaniment of Sasha. The man recognizes Baxtiyar and says he fought alongside his father in the war. The man asks the children about their plans for the future and he takes their photograph to commemorate the day.


Bəxtiyar - Scene 2

Sasha is chastised by her aunt in this short scene. Her devoted father is forced to be strict and sends her off to sit in a chair and think over what she has done. But the open window proves to be too tempting...








Saturday, September 15, 2012

Bəxtiyar - Scene 1

In the opening scene, the three childhood friends - Baxtiyar, Sasha and Yousif - have hatched a scheme to steal apples from the music professor's garden. Baxtiyar will be the decoy, sitting on his garden wall and singing. While the professor is watching Baxtiyar, the other two kids will climb over the wall into the garden and get the apples. The childrens' intentions are good - they want to bring the apples to the veteran's hospital. So in the end the professor lets them take the apples.


Sunday, September 9, 2012

Colleen and Aynur Talk about the Birthday Party

Another short dialog with translation.
I make quite a few mistakes in this dialog. My friend Nigar will help me with a new recording tomorrow. See if you can spot the mistakes that foreigners typically make when speaking Azerbaijani. Tomorrow I'll post a new and improved version.









Colleen and Aynur at the Hair Salon

I am helping a young Azerbaijani friend learn English. Aynur works at a hair salon near my house. She is very interested in English and tries very hard. Perhaps she'll do a recording with me next time I see her and I can post it here with her permission. For now, here is a text and a translation.





Saturday, August 25, 2012

More fun with dictionaries - tay-tuş

Alef's comment has sent me off to the dictionary yet again. I am intrigued by this word tay-tuş, which I have never heard before. This means equal or a match, as Alef said. The sample sentence in the dictionary is Onlar sənin tay-tuşun deyil. They are not your equal. I looked up both tay and tuş. Tay by itself means bale or package, as in bir tay pambıq - a bale of cotton. It also means a part of a pair - ayaqqabının tayı - and equal or match. Tuş means well-aimed or accurate.


Taya means a stack. As in, ot tayası - haystack. Does this only apply to hay, or can you have a stack of books? Or a stack of money? Or a stack of chairs? Thanks to Samir, we now know - You can't say these things. It doesn't make sense!

One who makes a haystack is a tayavuran. But strangely, there is a phrase taybatay açmaq - to throw open, as with a window - Külək pəncərəni taybatay açdı - The wind blew open the window.

Questions about həm-

Hello everyone, what few there may be... Back after a wonderful trip to the Qabala Music Festival. Extraordinary place, extraordinary event. And everyone was very friendly and helpful. They were especially patient speaking Azerbaijani to me. I'm really grateful.

However, now I'm back in Baku and have to buckle down to studying Azerbaijani again. So... I return to find a comment from my scholarly online friend Alef. He gave a detailed and very interesting explanation of different prefixes in Azerbaijani and which languages they come from. And YES - anyone! - I am still looking for an etymological dictionary of Azerbaijani...

Now to the topic at hand: the prefix həm-. Alef says that some are not correct or are archaic. However, they are all taken from my red dictionary (Editor-in-chief is Prof. O. I. Musayev). I thought that this was the gold standard for businesses in Azerbaijan. Perhaps there is a more recent dictionary that gives more common usages? Anyway, all advice appreciated.

I'll now move on to another posting. I wonder what my topic will be...

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Sentences using vocabulary from Mən, sən, o, və telefon

It is useful after reading a story to create sentences with the new vocabulary, even with words that you already knew. Here are some sentences using vocab from Anar's short story. A few of the sentences were taken from my dictionaries. Try to translate! (Answers are now at the bottom of the post.)

Mən evdə tək olanda, özümü çox tənha hiss edirəm.

Qoca insanlar tənhalıqdan qorxurlar.

Qəfildən işıq söndü.


Sunday, July 22, 2012

Words starting with həm-

Həm- as a prefix indicates similarity. Here are a few examples:

həmcins - homogenous; of the same sex
həmçinin - also, as well
həmdərd - fellow sufferer
həmdin - coreligionist
həməqidə - like-minded person
həməsr - contemporary
həmfikir - like-minded person
həmxana - roommate, housemate * apparently otaq yoldaşı is better
həmxasiyyət - having the same character, temperment
həmin - the same
həmkar - colleague (co-worker)
həmkarlıq - collaboration
həmməna - synonym
həmmənalı - synonymous
həmməzhəb - coreligionist
həmnöv - homogeneous, uniform * oxşar is better
həmrəng - of the same color
həmrəngli - of the same color
həmrəy - unanimous
həmrəylik - solidarity, unanimity
həmsərhəd - having the same border
həmsöhbət - interlocutor
həmşəhərli - from the same town or country
həmtay - equal * tay-tuş is the common expression
həmtaylıq - the state of being equal
həmyaş - of the same age * yaşıd is better
həmyerli - from the same place

Mən, sən, o, və telefon - Anar [mətn, qısa hekayət]

I have recently reread the short story Mən, sən o, və telefon by Anar. I really like this story. Great practice for reading and translation. I was going to type it all out, when I thought... maybe, just maybe... (unlike ssenarilər!) it just might be available online. And guess what? Anar has his own website! And the whole story is available there! What luck. This is really a wonderful thing. I didn't realize that this story was adapted by Nora Ephron (who recently died) into the 1998 movie You've Got Mail. Anyway, the story follows on the next page. Enjoy!

Telefon nömrələri
Oxşamaz bir-birinə
amma hamısında
insan səsi...
...pis günlər
oxşamaz bir-birinə
birində özün susarsan,
birində telefon.

Vaqif Vəkilov


Telephone numbers don't look alike but in all is the sound of a person's voice... 
... bad days don't resemble each other, in one you will keep silent, in one telephone. 


Saturday, July 14, 2012

Videos online

Just discovered a new source of quality video in Azerbaijani: 

Enjoy! The documentary section has quite a few that are available online:


Filmlər - Bəxtiyar

I found a great compilation of Azerbaijani "klassik filmlər" - it's called Azərbaycan kinosu (doesn't look like the picture). It has 62 "bizim kino". I bought it from the video shop that goes along the right-hand side of MUM. I watched the wonderful 1959 film Onu bağışlamaq olarmı? There was a slight problem with the disk however - it was cut short by about three or four minutes. The ending was very dramatic, but not what I expected. The very nice young guy working there is preparing a replacement copy of the disk for me. He fast-forwarded the film to find out where it was cut and let me find out how it ended! All very interesting and very helpful. I would highly recommend getting DVDs from this shop to help improve your Azerbaijani.

Having said that, I am having a terrible time finding scripts online from these film classics. Ages ago I found a full version of the dialog in Bəxtiyar, one of my all-time favorite films. I've watched it a couple of times so have it firmly in my memory. I read the whole script aloud today and it was great fun. This is actually much more effective as a method of learning language than reading novels. I was incredibly disappointed today when I went online and could not find ANY transcripts of Azerbaijani movies, not even the one that I had previously found. I was searching the following keywords: sitatlar, Azərbayan, filmlər, sözlər... and names of particular films. Heç nə tapmamışam! If anyone out there knows where I can find full scripts, I would really appreciate it. I am prepared to do the old-fashioned library thing. Hey, I'm a librarian! And I do remember what it was like to slowly go through microfilm...

However, for anyone who is as interested as I am in enjoying these wonderful films, I will share in full the one complete sitatlar that I have: Bəxtiyar. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!


Monday, July 9, 2012

Song - Axşam Mahnısı

Another beautiful song to sing. I looked it up online. Found two versions.

The wonderful Şövket Elekberova sings this one:
Şövket
However, the recording would have been much better if it was JUST her voice. The angelic choir in the background does nothing to improve the song.

The second is a much faster-paced guitar and percussion version. Nice guitar playing, stylish video, but I think the music is just too fast. You may disagree! It sounds like he is singing the last line of the chorus as "Döyüntünü bilmədi."
Çingiz


My translation follows. All comments welcome! I think this is going to be difficult to translate. The stanza in square brackets is not sung in either version.

I had a very helpful comment from one reader. I checked in my "Azərbaycan Dilinin İzahlı Lüğəti" and sure enough, he was right. Qaş qaranlıq is a phrase that means darkness is settling or falling. 

Qaş qaralır, kölgə tutur
Yavaş-yavaş meşəni.
Könlüm səsdə, gözüm yolda
Gözləyirəm mən səni.

Darkness falls, shadows spread
slowly over the forest.
My heart is listening, my eyes are watching,
As I wait for you.

Nəqərat:
Səbrim getdi, harda qaldı
Qaş qaraldı gəlməyir,
Bəlkə mənim könlümdəki
Döyüntünü bilməyir.

I have lost my patience, where is he?
Night has fallen,
Maybe he can't hear
The beating of my heart.

[Suya düşür budur yaşıl
Yarpaqların kölgəsi.
Ürəyimdən xəbər verir
Ötən quşların səsi.]

[The green leaves throw a shadow
On the water.
Hear what my heart is saying
In the song of passing birds.]

Nəqərat

Aydın göylər, uca dağlar,
Göy meşələr, lal sular
Sizi gördüm ürəyimdə
Aşdı-daşdı arzular.

Clear skies, high mountains,
Dark green forests, silent waters.
I can see you, and now my heart
Is overflowing with desire.

Nəqərat



Friday, July 6, 2012

Video with subtitles

Recently I had a question about radio  programming with the dialogue written out. Don't know if this exists, but I did find an interesting video from the Milli Mətbəx website. Narration is in Azerbaijani, subtitles are in English. Very helpful and very interesting for those of us who enjoy cooking! Nuş olsun!

Azerbaijani national cuisine



Thursday, July 5, 2012

Easily confused words


Yup, they have been driving me crazy for some time, so it's time for a post. I'll try to remember as many of these confusing pairs as I can.

Falling in love may put you in a jam, but that's no excuse for me confusing these two words:

məhəbbət means love, mürrəbbə means jam



Don't ask your waiter for some love with your tea when all you really want is some jam!


Maybe it's something about words that begin with m... Hmmm...
Why would I confuse mühariba with mühafizə - the second is guarding or defense (a pretty common sign as lots of places in Baku have guards) while the first is all-out war.


Then there is the confusion in meaning between these very similar words: 
uzun means long, lengthy; uzaq means distant, far away


And that other close pair:
seyf means safe, just exactly as it sounds; but sehv means a mistake

And I still have to stop to think before I say these two:
səhər is morning; şəhər is city

There are many more. Stay tuned.


More fun with dictionaries...

Ah, so many letters, so many combinations, so easy to confuse. I was recently looking at the news in Azerbaijani and saw the category təhlil and thought, what's that - education? Wrong! Education is təhsil. The other word means analysis. And looking it up only proved that there are even more words to confuse one that begin with təh-


təhər - mode, manner, way, method
təhkim - attachment
təhqiq - investigation
təhqir - insult
təhlil - analysis
təhrif - distortion
təhrik - instigation
təhsil - education
təhvil - surrender

Which leads me to the subject of easily confused words... See my next post.

In the news...

Another exercise in translation. From the BBC Azeri site. I've noticed that articles on this site frequently have typos, so be careful to check. This article was missing one ı in yaxınlığındakı and sızmanın was spelled with a dotted i. I also changed litrəlik to litrlik.


Gürcüstanda xlor sızması nəticəsində zəhərlənmə

A chlorine leak in Georgia has resulted in poisonings

Son yeniləmə: 4 iyul, 2012 - 09:59 GMT                   


Paytaxt yaxınlığındakı Lilo qəsəbəsində xlorun sızması nəticəsində 70-dən artıq adam xəstəxanaya aparılıb.
Over 70 people have been taken to hospital as a result of a chlorine leak in the settlement of Lilo near the capital. 

Onların arasında hamilə qadın və uşaqlar var. Astmadan əziyyət çəkən bir nəfərin "kritik" vəziyyətdə olduğu bildirilir.
Among them was a pregnant woman and children. It was announced that one person who suffers from asthma was in critical condition.


Xlor su şirkətinin ərazisindəki 800 litrlik sisterndə saxlanılıb.
Chlorine was kept by the water company in an 800 liter cistern.


Yerli mətbuat havadan ağır olan yaşıla çalan sarımtıl qazın tam bağlanılmamış krandan sızdığını bildirir.
Local press said that the tap was not fully closed and the air was heavy with a greenish-yellow gas.


Səhiyyə Nazirliyi sizmanın çərşənbə günü baş verdiyini bildirib. 
The Department of Health announced the occurrence of the leak on Wednesday.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Fun with dictionaries

Looking up one word in the dictionary can lead you in all kinds of directions. Here's one quite arbitrary journey I took today...

vasitə 

The sentence in a news item was "tort vasitəsilə istefaya çağırılıb". Some artistic types call for a resignation by means of a cake.  OK, must be a slow news day. But, this is an interesting and useful word. Let's see where it takes us.


Sunday, June 24, 2012

O olmasın, bu olsun - the cast

I've finally seen a live performance of O olmasın, bu olsun. As I'm sure readers know, this is a famous operetta by the great composer Üzeyir Hacıbəyov. The title is usually translated as "İf not this one, then that one". The performance was great - wonderful set, great singing, and very funny acting. So I've set myself the goal of translating the libretto and the songs so that next time I see it I'll understand more than I did this time. So, here's the first bit of information you need - the cast. In Azerbaijani this is called İştirak Edənlər - the participants...



Saturday, June 16, 2012

Qəmgin mahnı - Sad song

I fell in love with the music (played by the incomparable Çinqiz Sadıxov) before I heard the lyrics or even the title. It was such sad music, it would always make me want to cry. And guess what? That's what it's called - Sad song! I found a version of  it on Youtube sung by Şovkət Ələkbərova. Exceptionally beautiful rendition. Music by that genius Tofiq Quliyev. Words by Zeynal Cabbarzadə. Unfortunately the link to Youtube has been taken down due to copyright infringement.

Found another link. Let's hope it stays so the world can enjoy this beautiful song and grow in their understanding of Azerbaijan's rich musical culture.

https://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=2399923203657

Qəmgin mahnı Sad song

Mən çox gün görmədim 
Bil ki, dünyada... 
Ah, nə dərdə düşdüm 
Cavanlıqda mən... 
For a long time I haven't seen
What there is in the world...
Oh, I had misfortune
In my youth...

Hər gülün rəngini 
Salıram yada, mən yada... 
Ağlaya-ağlaya... 
Ağlaya-ağlaya... 
Qaranlıqda mən... 
All the colors of flowers
I try to recall, I try...
I am crying...
I am crying...
In the darkness...

Bax, gəlib ilk bahar, 
Qaynayır sular... 
Gör, nələr söyləyir 
Quşların səsi... 
Look, an early spring has come,
Waters are warming...
Listen to what the song of the birds
Is telling you...

Ürəyimdə şirin 
Ən xoş arzular, arzular... 
Dilimdən düşməyir,
Dilimdən düşməyir,
Sevgi nəğməsi...
In my heart 
Are such sweet hopes of happiness...
That I can't stop singing,
A song of love...

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Əl - words and phrases from "hand"

A great thing about Azerbaijani is that learning one word can help you to learn many new verbs or expressions. One such word is əl - hand.

Although I don't have an etymological dictionary, it seems to me that there are many words beginning with əl that must be related to hand. Maybe əla (perfect) has something to do with hand? Certainly əlaqə (connection, tie, or bond) seems related since people hold hands. Therefore, əlaqəsi olmag (be connected, have a connection with), əlaqəli (connected, related), dostluq əlaqələri (friendly relations), gardaşlıq əlaqələri (links of brotherhood), qohumluq əlaqələri (blood ties, that is, relatives), əlaqə girmək (to get in contact, to get in touch), əlaqəni kəsmək (cut ties), and yaxşı əlaqələri olmaq (to have lots of connections, be well-connected). When you are cut off on the phone you say Əlaqə kəsildi. Also əlac meaning "remedy" could be that remedies are given by hand. Əlavə etmək is to add. Əlbəttə (of course) implies a promise. Əlbir "one hand" means "hand-in-hand" or "together". Əliaçıq is literally open-handed or generous. Əliaşağı "hand down" means short of money or in need of money. Əliəyri "crooked hand" means thievish or dishonest. Əliganlı is literally red-handed. Əlləşmək "to use your hands" means to make an effort, to try hard. Əlverişli is advantageous (you want to be given into your hand) while əlverişsiz means the opposite - disadvantageous or unprofitable (something you don't want to be given into your hand). Finally there is good-bye: Əlvidə!

Verbs and nouns using əl:

əl çalmaq - applaud, clap
əl dəymək - touch
əl vermək - shake hands
əl vurmaq - to touch
əl-ələ - hand-in-hand
əl-ələ vermək - to work together, to cooperate
əl tutmaq - to hold hands or to help
əl yetirmək - to help
əldə etmək - to gain, to attain
əldən düşmək - to become tired
əl atmaq - to undertake (work)
əl açmaq - to beg
əl eləmək - to wave good-bye
əlini üzmək - to lose hope
əldən buraxmaq  - to let go, slip
əldən salmaq - to exhaust
özünü ələ almaq - to have self-control
əl yeri goymaq - to have a way out, a loophole
Əlim gəlmir - I can't bring myself to do do it.
Əl çək! - Leave me alone. Get lost!
əl ağacı - walking stick
əl əməyi - manual labor
əl işi - hand-crafted
əl yaylığı - handkerchief

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Tapmacalar

It seems there is a oral tradition (şifahi xalq ədəbiyyatı) of telling riddles in Azerbaijani.You can find books of riddles in Azerbaijan that are not only fun to figure out but are great for building vocabulary. Altun Kitab press publishes a small red paperback with 639 riddles. They are listed by themes such as Bitkilər (plants), Geyim və bəzək şeyləri (clothing and jewelry), and Xörəklər və qida məhsulları (Meals and food products). Look for it in bookshops. Here are some that I have figured out (OK, for some I peeked at the answers in the back of the book). I'll list examples here and answers on the following page. Warning: some are very specific to Azerbaijani culture!





1. Axşam gedər, Səhər gələr.
2. Aləmə işıq salır, Axşam gül kimi solur.
3. Yupyumru fincan, İçi dolu mərcan.
4. Adam deyil, hey qaçir, Meşə deyil, səs salır.
5. Bizim evdə dörd gəlin var, Dördü də bir boy-buxunda.
6. Üzük aldım, qaşı yox, Təpə gördüm, daşı yox, O nədir ki, ağlayır, Gözlərinin yaşı yox?
7. Bizdə bir kişi var, Çoxluca gözu var. 
8. Bizdə bir kişi var, Dörd qıçı var.
9. Bizdə bir kişi var, Qırx iki dişi var.
10. Baxsan onun üzünə, Görünərsən gözünə.


Dilmanc upgrade

Dilmanc version 2.5 is available for download. They also have a new "Metnin səsləndirilməsi" - literally "text's sounding" or "text to speech". It does a really good job of reading out Azerbaijani. Try it! It's quite amazing. As I've said before, no translation software is perfect, but this is the best I've come across for Azerbaijani.
Go to www.dilmanc.az.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Singing - Qızıl üzük

I  am learning to sing "Qızıl Üzük". Here is a session with my teacher. She sings one line, I sing another, then we both sing together.




You can find the lyrics and a translation elsewhere on the blog.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Singing - Girdim yarın bağçasına

This is a cell phone video of my first attempt at singing an Azerbaijani song in public. The event was held at my school a few months ago. Students (and me, the one staff person) who are studying music with tutors had a chance to perform. I am accompanied on the piano by my brilliant piano and vocal teacher, Nigar.

I was really nervous! I think it gets easier the more you perform in public. I hope to do another public performance next week.



The words are posted and translated elsewhere on this blog.

Monday, May 14, 2012

A conversation about the weather (Hava haqqında)


This is my first attempt to put podcasts on the blog. Thanks to my colleague Said for his technical assistance. My library colleague Lala kindly agreed to have a conversation about weather with me. (I am obviously the foreigner; she is obviously the native speaker!) I hope you enjoy this short audio file.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Qızıl Üzük

Qızıl Üzük

Sözləri Rəsul Rzanındır

Üzüyümün qaşı firuzədəndir,
Könlüm açılmayır bu gün nədəndir.
Yaman gündə dost əlindən bərk yapış,
Böyük duyğu ömrü bahar edəndir.
Böyük duyğu ömrü bahar edəndir.

My ring’s stone is from turquoise,
I don’t know why I am blue today.
In bad times, hold fast to your friends,
Deep feelings make your life sweet like springtime.
Deep feelings make life like spring.


[Bizim bağlar, çöllər xoş bir tamaşa,
Sonalar göllərdə gəzərlər qoşa.
Necə çətin olsa ömrün yolları
Birlikdə yorulmaz vurarıq başa.
Birlikdə yorulmaz vurarıq başa.

Our gardens, our fields – such a spectacle!
Swans glide in pairs upon the lakes.
However hard life gets,
Together we will make it through,
Together we will make it.]*

Bulud gələr, çiskin çilər, çən eylər.
Yar yarından ayrı düşsə qəm eylər.
Sevgilimdən necə qalım aralı?
Bir baxışla qəlbə yüz məlhəm eylər.
Bir baxışla qəlbə yüz məlhəm eylər.

Clouds come, bringing drizzle and mist.
Lovers who are parted will be sad.
How can I remain apart from my beloved?
One look from you would heal my soul.
One look from you would heal my soul.

*Rashid Behbudov does not sing this stanza in Baxtiyar.