[Spellyans] cledh etc

Michael Everson everson at evertype.com
Fri Jan 18 11:13:43 GMT 2013

On 17 Jan 2013, at 12:35, Linus Band <linusband at gmail.com> wrote:

> Even though if we agree that the unrounding already took place in the 15th century, we cannot conclude that the SWF should therefore contain -e- instead -eu-, because Ken George aims to revive the language as spoken around 1500. What we are forgetting is that Ken George (and surely others) is convinced that the unrounding had not taken place yet around 1500, but rather later. 

Ken George tried to revise the pronunciation of Revived Cornish according to his bretonized reconstruction throughout. He tried to introduce half-length (a level of phonetic detail it is simply impossible to deduce from any medieval orthography for any language), and he tried to introduce geminate consonants -- and he uses neither in his own speech. He tried to turn two phonemes /i/ and /o/ into four /i/ and /ɪ/ and /o/ and /ɔ/ too, and few if any no KK users can actually manage to distinguish [iː i ɪː ɪ oː o ɔː ɔ]. 

All of this was based on his pre-Mac Plus mainframe computer programmes, using his (unpublished) "orthographic profiles" (as if a fancy name gave value to them) and I for my part don't have a lot of faith in any of it.

> The fact is that there is a part of the revival that would like to pronounce old  */ø/ as [e(ː)] and another part that prefers the older sound [ø(ː)], and the SWF has to accommodate both.

Most KK users don't have any idea about historical linguistics, so if some learned /ø/ in this word, that doesn't mean that it is their wish on the basis of examining the reconstructions to aspire to Ken George's idea of what Cornish was at 1500 (which isn't everybody's idea of what it was at that date, either). It means that the books they learnt from were KK, and it means little else. 

Michael Everson * http://www.evertype.com/

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