[Spellyans] loan words

Eddie Climo eddie_climo at yahoo.co.uk
Wed Feb 23 17:42:55 GMT 2011

Sure—not native Cornish, but native Brythonic. And both faklen and torchen are validated by being widely used in the Revival over many years.

Nance gives the sources of many of his head-words, especially in his 1938 dictionary. In this case, he does indeed mark both faklen (flaming torch) and fakly (to flame, inflame) as loans from Welsh. However, he also offers us fakel (flame, inflammation), and notes it as being adopted from Cornish Dialect fackle and being cognate to Latin facula (a little torch).

The presence of the Dialect word gives strong justification to him borrowing 2 cognates from Welsh to fill gaps in this Cornish lexeme, a principle which he details in his Introduction. We are fortunate that Nance was so meticulously detailed in his writings as to make his logic transparent even to an amateur Kernewegor (for which read 'lover of Cornish') like me.

It's a pity that some other Cornish lexicographers have not matched Nance's high standard of scholarship. With some of them, you get no help whatsoever in distinguishing the historical from the neologistic — what's actually used in RC from what the lexicographer thinks they ought to use. You're just left guessing as to whether, say, St. Meryasek or Noah or JC (or merely the lexicographer) ever found himself "up shit creek without a paddle"!

Let us hope that any future dictionaries in 'Kernewek Gwyr' strive for better than that.

Eddie Climo

On 2011 Whe 23, at 11:32, nicholas williams wrote:

> Hardly native. Faklen is borrowed from Welsh.
> Torchen appears as torghan in Lhuyd. 
> On 2011 Whe 23, at 06:46, Eddie Climo wrote:
>> an English loan and a native Brythonic word:
>> torchen - an electric torch
>> faklen - a flaming torch.
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