[Spellyans] ha versus hag

Daniel Prohaska daniel at ryan-prohaska.com
Fri Jul 1 09:36:31 IST 2016


Nothing, Jan!
D

Sent from my iPhone

> On 01 Jul 2016, at 10:19, Janice Lobb <janicelobb at gmail.com> wrote:
> 
> What's wrong with using <ha> for everything?
> 
> Jan
> 
>> On Fri, Jul 1, 2016 at 3:13 AM, Mike R <mremic01 at gmail.com> wrote:
>> Strachan describes it as 'ac before vowels and the negative particles ny, na, and sometimes before other consonants.' 
>> 
>> Here are a few examples from the Four Branches:
>> 
>> 'Ac ual y byd yn ymwarandaw a llef yr erchwys...'
>> 
>> Would we treat the u in ual as a vowel here? I imagine that it would have been more of a bilabial at the time, unlike the modern f. Ac ual seems consistent, but it's often just a before other words that begin with u/v.
>> 
>> 'Y march a gymerth, ac racdaw yd aeth.'
>> 
>> 'Ac rac diruawr wres, y kyrchwys y bleit a'e yscwyd a'y tharaw gantaw allan, ac yn y ol ynteu y wreic.'
>> 
>> But then:
>> 
>> '...a rac guelet gwr kyuurd a thi yn diuetha pryf mor dielw a hwnnw.'
>> 
>> 'A Riannon' is used fairly consistently. 
>> 
>> 'Ac nachaf y liw a'y wed a'y ansawd yn atueilaw o'y charyat, hyt nat oed hawd y adnabot.'
>> 
>> Is nachaf being treating like a negative particle here? I thought it meant something like 'behold', but maybe it has some obscure origin in a negative construction.
>> 
>> So Strachan gives us more information than Evans, but even he doesn't give us the specifics. It seems that Middle Welsh scribes usually abided by the rule of using ac before a vowel, a negative particle (and by extension, sometimes n), and even sometimes r. We might find even more examples digging into other texts. Over time, I hope to narrow in on details like this, but it's a daunting task.
>> 
>> There is also an instance of the phrase 'a'n kynnadyl yna yn y lle hon' in the White Book version of PPD, where the Red Book has 'ac an kynnadyl yna yn y lle hon.' Thomson's edition seems to take a'n as the conjunction a with an infixed possessive 'n (from an), but I suppose it could just as easily be 'an kynnadyl' with no conjunction. If we accept Thomson's interpretation, we see two different ways to deal with a/ac in this situation, each taken by a different scribe in order to write the same sentence. 
>> 
>> Sorry to spend so much time on Welsh matters. I suppose my point is that the rules for a(c) aren't as clear cut as we'd like them to be. But that's okay. There's enough inconsistency that it's difficult to say that one way or the other is 'wrong', but we can certainly look to the tendencies of the texts and try to imitate them. I think you've got the right idea, Nicholas. I have much more confidence in the Cornish described in Desky Kernowek than what I see in other books due to the attestations, and my own preference would be to proscribe rules for revived Cornish based on the texts. At the same time, if everyone else finds hag acceptable in all environments, I would be willing to go along with that, provided future grammars make note of the fact that this was not the case prior to the revival. 
>> 
>> Does vowel length have any influence on the frequency of ha vs. hag? Perhaps a diphthong at the beginning of the following word?  
>> ​. 
>> 
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