[Spellyans] preterite of bos

nicholas williams njawilliams at gmail.com
Fri Nov 28 20:39:03 GMT 2008

I gave a short talk today at the annual Tionól of the School of Celtic  
Studies, Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies
on the uses of the preterite of bos in Cornish. Among those present  
was Iwan Wmffre who wrote the book
on Late Cornish. The talk was, I think, well received and several  
people spoke to me afterwards and said
how interesting it was to hear Cornish spoken, which they had not  

Not only does y feu marow 'he died' occur in Cornish and bu marw 'he  
died' in Welsh,
but the comparable ba marb 'he died' is also well attested in early  
Irish. We seem to be dealing
here with an insular Celtic syntagm. Morfydd Owen,, who was present  
mentioned that
in Cornish classes in the University of Wales the similarity between y  
feu marow and bu
marw is often noted. It has never, as far as I am aware, been  
mentioned in print—and I have not
seen it mentioned in any revivalist handbook.

I intend to publish a fuller version of the paper when it is ready.

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