[Spellyans] <y>, <i>, etc

nicholas williams njawilliams at gmail.com
Fri Jul 25 10:54:37 IST 2008


The problem with Cornish orthography is that we have too few letters  
and too many possible sounds to represent.
We will either have to endure ambiguity on the one hand or diacritics  
on the other. There is no other choice.
Nance and UCR wrote gwyn 'white' and gwyn 'wine' and one had to know  
which was which.
KK introduced the non-traditional spellings gwin 'wine' and gwynn  
'white'.
KS until now has accommodated KK users by writing gwin, but has  
comforted UC and UCR users by
writing gwynn and/or gwydn. And we also may also write warbydn, war y  
bydn, me a vydn, etc.

As far as I understand it the proposal is to avoid having to write ÿ  
in words like bÿs, ÿs, etc. by using
y only for the sound that may also be e, e.g. bys/bës; but writing bis  
'until' with <i>. And also gwinn 'white',
me/my a vinn, etc.

The problem here is not that gwinn and minn are unattested, since  
gwidn and midn do occur in
later texts. The problem is that gwinn and minn are entirely counter- 
intuitive.
KK and KS have followed Welsh in using <y> for a lower variety of i,  
and in Cornish that means
a short i (since, page George) long [I:] was not in MC—in my view and  
the view of Nance, Caradar, Lhuyd, Gendall,
and Jenner) and [I:] is not in the revived language either. Most  
revivalists are Anglophones
and distinguish long i: from short I. They have little problem with  
<i> as a graph for [i:], and they are already
familiar with it in words like machine, aphetamine, acetyline, etc.
Now, however, it is being suggested that <y> should be long and <i>  
short. This is not wise, to say the very least. It subverts
the by now accepted notion that <y> is short, myn/mynn/mydn and <i> is  
long gwin, min, tir, gwir. It would
also mean introducing a whole swathe of monosyllables in <i> which  
would have short vowels. The only gain being
that bÿs could be written bys without a diaeresis. Big deal. I write  
bës anyway. One would still need a diacritic on
bëdh, vëth, adrëv, ahës, gwëdh, fëdh. There is only one word that I  
write with ÿ and that is ÿs 'corn'. So in order
to be allowed to write ys instead I would have to endure gwidn, midn,  
bis 'until'. No thank you.

There are problems with <i> in syllable initial, I admit. I don't  
particularly like ino 'in him', though inhy and inans are fine.
The distinction between in 'in' and adverbial yn is useful. Had it  
existed in UC we would never have been saddled
with the erroneous *yn whyr so beloved by Nance.


Nicholas




On 25 Jul 2008, at 10:02, Jon Mills wrote:

> You are, of course, correct Nicholas. Thank you for the reminder.
> Jon
>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "nicholas williams"
> To: "Standard Cornish discussion list"
> Subject: Re: [Spellyans] , , etc
> Date: Fri, 25 Jul 2008 09:56:41 +0100
>
> Jon, *yn whir is unattested. The form is yn gwyr, in guir in the  
> texts.
>
> Nicholas
> ----------
> On 25 Jul 2008, at 09:42, Jon Mills wrote:
>
>> Like Andrew, I too consider YN (preposition) and YN (adverbial  
>> particle) to be the same lexeme. For me 'yn whir' and 'yn ta' are  
>> simply prepositional phrases that function as adverbials. English  
>> also has prepositional phrases that function as adverbials; e.g.,  
>> 'on time'.
>> Jon
>>
>> ----- Original Message -----
>> From: "A. J. Trim"
>> To: "Standard Cornish discussion list"
>> Subject: [Spellyans] , , etc
>> Date: Fri, 25 Jul 2008 01:18:28 +0100
>>
>> ....
>>
>> I am not convinced that yn “in” is really any different from yn  
>> adverbial particle. I think they are the same word, so they should  
>> be spelt the same way. The adverbial use is some kind of an idiom  
>> using “in”. This mutates adjectives but not nouns, so yn gwir “in  
>> truth” is not mutated but yn ta “well” is.
>>
>>
>>
>> Regards,
>>
>> Andrew J. Trim
>>
>>
>> _______________________________________________
>> Spellyans mailing list
>> Spellyans at kernowek.net
>> http://kernowek.net/mailman/listinfo/spellyans_kernowek.net
>>
>>
>>
>> _____________________________________
>> Dr. Jon Mills,
>> School of European Culture and Languages,
>> University of Kent
>>
>> --
>> Be Yourself @ mail.com!
>> Choose From 200+ Email Addresses
>> Get a Free Account at www.mail.com!
>> _______________________________________________
>> Spellyans mailing list
>> Spellyans at kernowek.net
>> http://kernowek.net/mailman/listinfo/spellyans_kernowek.net
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Spellyans mailing list
> Spellyans at kernowek.net
> http://kernowek.net/mailman/listinfo/spellyans_kernowek.net
>
>
>
> _____________________________________
> Dr. Jon Mills,
> School of European Culture and Languages,
> University of Kent
>
> --
> Be Yourself @ mail.com!
> Choose From 200+ Email Addresses
> Get a Free Account at www.mail.com!
> _______________________________________________
> Spellyans mailing list
> Spellyans at kernowek.net
> http://kernowek.net/mailman/listinfo/spellyans_kernowek.net

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://kernowek.net/pipermail/spellyans_kernowek.net/attachments/20080725/5eadf103/attachment-0001.html>


More information about the Spellyans mailing list