[Spellyans] More on bys/bes words and diacritical marks
tom.trethewey at yahoo.co.uk
Thu Jul 10 13:30:59 IST 2008
When words are sometimes spelled with <i> or <y> and sometimes with <e>,
there are two explanations. The one favoured hitherto on this forum has been that there were two different pronunciations, [i:] and [E:] for the words with long vowels.
I find this explanation naive compared with its alternative, that the mixture of <i~y> and <e> (and indeed <ey>) represents a sound intermediate between [i] and [E], say [I].
So when the word for 'finger' is spelled both <bis> and <bes> in Old Cornish,
it means that the vowel was between [i:] and [E:]. The same observation may be made for the spelling of many words in Middle Cornish, such as <dyth~deyth~deth> 'day'.
--- On Thu, 10/7/08, Jon Mills <j.mills at email.com> wrote:
If OCV "bis truit", is Cornish, then how do we account for the alternation of <-i-> and <-e-> in Old Cornish?
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