[Spellyans] KK ha'n SWF - pronunciation

Penny Squire pennysquire at ymail.com
Sat Aug 9 13:42:33 IST 2008

I think that we will have to agree to differ on this, Nicholas. To my ear there are distinct differences between the pronunciation of  Ken George and KK users and that of the UC users that I have heard. I'm not saying that  their pronunciation is perfect (I can think of some KK users who have diabolical pronunciation - but they probably would in any second language!) but to my ear they are at least attempting a less Anglified pronunciation than the UC users achieve, as well as distinguishing between sounds which UC users do not.

As for half length and long consonants - I can hear the difference between the length of consonants (and the vowels) in <pel> and <pell>, <del> and <dell> <mel> and <mell> and so on in KK users' speech, but it's very hit and miss with the  UC users I have heard. As I have said, not only have I been learning using KK but have also attended as many events as possible and - being aware of the controversy - have been using my ears as hard as I could. I can generally pin down KK and UC users by their pronunciation. If there were no difference, I wouldn't be able to, would I?

I'll have to think about and listen out for the half-length vowels (or lack of them!) in speech.

I would certainly agree that KK users who were brought up on UC have had a problem breaking old habits, but that's not the fault of the spelling. The same goes for students taught by teachers who haven't completely succeeded in changing their pronunciation. Oddly, though, some students (and not 'linguists', either) have managed better pronunciation than their teachers!

I'm not being deliberately awkward or argumentative, Nicholas - it's just that my experience doesn't entirely bear out what you are saying.

It would really be helpful to the discussions on Spellyans if yourself and Michael were to record some Middle Cornish for us so that we can hear what you believe it should sound like. 


From: nicholas williams <njawilliams at gmail.com>

Ken has no half-length and no long consonants. These are the sine-qua-non of KK.
Without them there is no KK. KK is just a new (non-traditional and non-phonemic) spelling .

The differences you mention are marginal. They do not affect his pronunciation which is UC.
Ken George speeks Unified Cornish.

Nicholas Williams

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