[Spellyans] Broth and cabbage

Daniel Prohaska daniel at ryan-prohaska.com
Thu Nov 18 08:22:05 GMT 2010

-----Original Message-----
From: Michael Everson
Sent: Thursday, November 18, 2010 7:25 AM

"On 18 Nov 2010, at 00:36, Daniel Prohaska wrote:

> I see a diphthong in the latter’s attested forms…


Good for you, Dan!“


Why, thank you Michael, so nice of you to say so! 


On the other hand, in the Revived language, people like to distinguish the two, and have done so for a very long time indeed.”


You mean Nance’s cawl v. cowl?


Here are the attested spellings:



caul (VC)                                                         

kaụl (Lh)              

kaol (Lh)                

caul (Pryce)     



cawl (VC)              

coul (OM)            

coul (PC)                

covle (BM)               

kaụl (Lh)              

kowl (Lh)                

coul (Pryce)                

caul (Pryce)                                

cowl (Pryce)                


Both words look as though they contained a diphthong. I should recommend cawl [kaʊl] “cabbage” and cowl [kɔʊl] “soup”.




“In KS we write cawl 'broth' [kaʊl] and caul 'cabbage' [kɔːl] because this is how we pronounce these words.


These were UC cowl 'broth' [kaʊl] and cawl 'cabbage' [kɔːl] respectively.


Lhuyd gives kaụl 241a and kowl 231c for 'broth'


Lhuyd gives kaụl 33a and kaol 45a for 'cabbage'.


Kennedy writes cowl and caol.


Gendall writes cawl "[kæul]" and caul "[kɐːl]" (his transcriptions answer to UC/UCR/KS [kaʊl] and [kɔːl]).


Since Revivalists distinguish the two words, and since George is doubtful of what to do ("Did the words for 'cabbage' and 'soup' fall together in Cornish? This is one of the vexing questions that cannot be answered without trad. native speakers. The problem may be avoided by using ongel for 'cabbage' and soubenn for 'soup'."), the SWF should not use KK's kowl and kowl for both. 


In the SWF, 'broth' should be spelt cawl [kaʊl], and 'cabbage', well, it should be spelt caul, but in the absence of an au graph it should remain cowl."



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