[Spellyans] An Abecedary Kernowek

Michael Everson everson at evertype.com
Sat Mar 28 22:06:08 GMT 2009

You all know how fond I am of alphabets. I'd like to establish letter- 
names for the Cornish alphabet.

I have seen lists, both from KK and from other sources, which treat  
"some digraphs as letters, but that practice (similar to practice to  
Welsh and Breton) is outdated; we do not use it in our dictionaries  
and we have other diagraphs like "sh" and "lh" and "th" and so on.  
Nevertheless, here is what I have seen:

Wella Brown's KK alphabet (omits C, Q, X and Z):

a, be, cha, de, e, ev, ge, ha, i, je, ka, el, em, en, o, pe, ar, es,  
te, u, ve, we, ye

An alphabet (possibly from Talek?):

ah, be, ce, de, edh, e, fe, ge, egh, he, je, ke, el, em, en, o, pe,  
que, er, es, te, the, u, ve, we, ya, ze

This is written to fit the Alphabet Song, thus:

ah be ce de edh e fe
ge egh he je ke el em
en o pe que er es te
the u ve we ya [ha] ze

As I say, I don't think we can have "ch", "dh", "gh", or "th" as  
"letters" whilst omitting "sh" and "wh" and so on. In particular since  
the usage isn't uniform

I give below a set of letter names for the alphabet in KS.

Comments, please. In particular, what about "h" and "q" and "r" and "w"?

A	a	â
Â	â	â to bian
À	à	â sogh
B	b	bê
C	c	cê
D	d	dê
E	e	ê
Ê	ê	ê to bian
È	è	ê sogh
Ë	ë	ê dewboynt
F	f	ef
G	g	gê
H	h	êch
I	i	î
Î	î	î to bian
Ì	ì	î sogh
J	j	jê
K	k	kê
L	l	ell
M	m	èm
N	n	èn
O	o	ô
Ô	ô	ô to bian
Ò	ò	ô sogh
P	p	pê
Q	q	cû, kuw
R	r	àr, èr
S	s	ess
T	t	tê
U	u	û
Û	û	û to bian
Ù	ù	û sogh
V	v	vê
W	w	wê
X	x	ex
Y	y	yê
Ÿ	ÿ	yê dewboynt
Z	z	zê

This is not for the Alphabet Song, though all that needs doing for  
that is to add some ha's and then write two lines for the end of the  

â, bê, cê, dê, ê, ef, gê,
êch, î, jê, kê, ell, èm, èn, ô, pê
cû, èr, ess, tê, û ha vê,
wê hag ex ha yê ha zê.

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

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