[Spellyans] iw

nicholas williams njawilliams at gmail.com
Wed Nov 24 13:28:55 GMT 2010

Breton now has ev and iv. Welsh has iw, yw and ew; but iw and yw are identical in SW. In North Welsh yw does not contain a high front vowel but a centralised one.
George's hypothetic threeway distinction in Cornish, if it existed, would be unique in Brythonic.
It doesn't, of course, and the orthography of the revived language has no business pretending that it does.

I notice in OCV:

bleu 'hair'   [blew PC 484 ]
ieu 'yoke' [pl. ewyow BK 849]
leu 'lion' [replaced by lion in MC]
reu 'frost' [Reu AB: 250a in a contemporary sentence] 
leu 'rudder' [not attested in MC]

biu 'life, flesh' [agan bew RD 74]
liu 'colour' [lyw PA 68c, RD 2101; lew CW 1051]

luu 'host' (in luulistri) [lu PA 163c]
duv 'black' [du RD 2101]

duy 'god' [metathesised in MC and spelt dew, du, dyw; duwaw in the plural sometimes]
ruy 'king' [unattested in MC]
uy 'egg' [wy BM 3953; oy BM 3302]
plui 'parish' [plu OM 2463; plew TH 25a].

As Jon says, OC, or at least the Cornish of OCV, has only two diphthongs here: /ew/ and /Iw/.
KK was conlang and the SWF is also a conlang.
I prefer something a little closer to Cornish.


On 2010 Du 24, at 12:33, j.mills at email.com wrote:

> What actually is the evidence for three phonemes /ɪƱ/, /iƱ/ and /εƱ/ in Old Cornish? The Vocabularium Cornicum has "clavus: leu pi obi" [Vocabularium Cornicum: 282], "leo: leu" [Vocabularium Cornicum: 560] and "color: liu" [Vocabularium Cornicum: 481]. This suggests two phonemes, /ɪƱ/ and /εƱ/. How is a third phoneme extrapolated?
> Ol an gwella,
> Jon

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