[Spellyans] Falmouth

Craig Weatherhill craig at agantavas.org
Mon Apr 28 14:43:08 IST 2014


Yes.  When OM was written at Glasney, the major estate in the area was Arwenack.  The 1705 reference is also to the Arwenack estate (the 'castel broas' referred to by Harry is probably Pendennis Castle, built on Arwenack land).
Arwenack House, largely rebuilt after a major fire, still survives, and part of an original wall can still be seen.  




The map on the right dates from c.1540.  Arwenack is the settlement shown in the middle, by some ponds (and a surviving stream which might have been the "(g) wennek" concerned).   The thick line you can see on the right of the map is the estate boundary, so you can see that the 17th century town was mostly built within that boundary.  The little beach above the rounded promontory near the foot of the map is where The Moor and Prince of Wales Pier are now.  The parish church (also 1661 and dedicated to "Charles the Martyr" in honour of the father of the king who signed the town's foundation charter) is about halfway between that beach and Arwenack House.

Craig




On 2014 Ebr 28, at 13:09, Jon Mills wrote:

> Would it be correct to say that Arwennek is only a part or district of present day Falmouth. If so, it might be better to use Falmeth for the whole of present day Falmouth.
> Jon
>  
>> ----- Original Message -----
>> From: Craig Weatherhill
>> Sent: 04/28/14 12:40 PM
>> To: Standard Cornish discussion list
>> Subject: Re: [Spellyans] Falmouth
>>  
>> It isn't, Nicholas.  None of the currently use Aber- names are.   They date only from the revival, probably in the 50s (definitely within Nance's era).  Aber- although found in Scotland, Wales and Brittany, is not found as a Cornish place-name element, and is only listed in the OCV, with meanings such as "gulf, whirlpool, confluence", but NOT "estuary, river-mouth".
>>  
>> However, the Signage Panel agreed that <Arwennek> was more historically valid, but wanted to continue using <Aberfal> which they felt to be well established after half a century or more of use.  I did get them to slightly amend this to <Aberfala>, to be more representative of the river-name's historic forms.  They agreed to that.
>>  
>> Craig
>>  
>> Note:  The town of Falmouth did not exist before the mid 17th century, just a couple of small scattered settlements/farms such as Smithick (Eng. name).  Earlier references to "Falmouth" only described the haven.  It was Sir Peter Killigrew of Arwenack Manor who sought and gained (in 1661) a Charter from Charles II to develop the town, which was largely built on Arwenack estate lands.   That the town had the name of "Pennycomequick", supposedly derived fromCornish, is a rather absurd myth.  Frequent claims that was "pen-y-cwm (Welsh spelling?)-gwyk" are not viable.  Cornish place-names are not constructed in that manner, not does it make much sense in translation.   It was, in fact, a very briefly used English nickname for a then flourishing port where you could make your fortune (or, at least a decent living) quite readily for a while.
>>  
>>  
>>  
>> On 2014 Ebr 28, at 11:33, Nicholas Williams wrote:
>>  
>>> 
>>> I was listening a Cornish broadcast recently and heard the placename Aberfala for Falmouth. 
>>> This isn't attested in traditional Cornish as far as one can see. 
>>>  
>>> The attested names are 
>>> 1 Falmeth (rag ma dro da deux mill Hosket whath in Falmeth, Oliver Pender to William Gwavas, August 1711) or
>>> 2 Arwennak/Arwednak (an enys hag arwennek OM 2592; Ha an Castel Broas es en or Widnack; James Harry 1705). 
>>> Compare Arwennack Street in Falmouth itself. 
>>>  
>>> My preference is for Arwennak/Arwednak.
>>>  
>>> Where does Aberfala originate?  According to Padel there is no evidence that the element aber 'estuary, river mouth' was ever attested in Cornish.
>>>  
>>> Nicholas
>>>  
>>>  
>>>  
>>>  
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> Spellyans mailing list
>>> Spellyans at kernowek.net
>>> http://kernowek.net/mailman/listinfo/spellyans_kernowek.net
>  
> 
> 
> 
> _____________________________________ 
> Dr. Jon Mills, 
> University of Kent
> http://kent.academia.edu/JonMills _______________________________________________
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