[Spellyans] <gwredhen> or <gwreydhen> "root"?

Daniel Prohaska daniel at ryan-prohaska.com
Wed Jan 14 17:39:34 GMT 2009

Dhew’whei lowena!

I’m having trouble with the Cornish word for “root”. The KK dictionary gives
gwreydhenn, UCR gwredhen, RLC has gwredhan. Traditional Cornish attestations
are gwrythyow (pl., OM), gurythyow (pl., OM), gvrythyow (pl., OM), an
wreythan (x 3 TH), an wrethyan (TH), gwryth (pl., BK), gwrethow (pl. CW),
ha'y gwreythow (pl. CW), Hy gwredhan yw down (Lhuyd). The verb gurythya
'root' occurs twice in OM (Thank you Nicholas for providing these forms).
OCVoc has grueiten. The Welsh cognate is gwraidd and the Breton plural is
gwizioù (singulative gwrizienn). A typical Proto-Celtic reconstruction is
*wrad-io-. Craig has provided me with the place name Trythall which was
recorded as Trewreydhel in 1289.

a)       My question is, should the collective noun have a diphthongal or
monophthongal reflex?

b)       Is the stressed vowel of the disyllabic reflex (in the singulative
gwrXdhen and plural gwrXdhyow) different from the vowel in the collective
noun gwrXdh?

c)       Was the high front vowel through secondary i-affection in the verb
gurythya and the plural gurythyow analogically transferred onto the
collective and singulative form? 

Any ideas and comments would be greatly appreciated. 

Gromercy dhew’, 



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