[Spellyans] y-umlaut in 'Beunans Meriasek' ?

ajtrim at msn.com ajtrim at msn.com
Fri Nov 21 02:11:48 GMT 2008

In lines 139 & 140, we have:

ke ha due pan vy plesyes myns may hyllen sur esyes
This would indicate that <ij> is another way of writing <ye>.

This is consistent with <ÿ> being another way of writing <ye>.

In lines 229 & 230, we have:

ahanas vs 3yn cowsys
du asota mur presijs

This would indicate that -sys and -sijs are pronounced the same, so presumably, -syes would have had the same pronunciation too.

I suggest that the <y>, <ij> and <ye> were all pronounced like <ee> in English "see" (i.e. [i:]), but probably not stressed.

In lines 555 & 556, filij rhymes with yly.


Andrew J. Trim 

From: Eddie Climo 
Sent: Thursday, November 20, 2008 5:55 PM
To: Standard Cornish discussion list 
Subject: [Spellyans] y-umlaut in 'Beunans Meriasek' ?

An idle query: I'm currently reading the e-book edition of Whitley Stokes' edition of Beunans Meriasek, which can be downloaded free of charge from:


An oddity that I've noticed repeatedly is the use of < ij >, as in ll.314-316:

  Ny yv plesijs hag a vyn
  boys revlijs drethogh certeyn
     ha meriasek kekefrys ....

In Dutch, as best I recall, this digraph is used as an alternative for < y umlaut >. Might this be the case here as well, giving us:
  plesijs, revlijs > plesÿs, revlÿs

Eddie Foirbeis Climo
- -- - -- - -- - -- - -- - -- - -- - -- - -- - -- - -- - -- -
Dres ethom akennow byner re bons lyeshes
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