[Spellyans] fleece

nicholas williams njawilliams at gmail.com
Wed Nov 25 19:06:19 GMT 2009

There is something of a problem with Lhuyd's <lyv>.
It is possible that he did indeed hear the word and that it was  
pronounced [lIv].
I have my doubts.

In the middle of the sixteenth century the word was [lIw] written  
<lew> TH 7.
In CW this appears as <lywe> CW 2358 and <lyw> CW 2420,
and in the plural as <lyvyow>  CW 2314, 2538 and <levyaw> CW 2165.

This means that the usual forms in the sixteenth and seventeenth  
centuries seem to have been
either <lyw>, <lew> or plural <lyvyow>, <levyow> with singular sense.

It is therefore possible, and perhaps even likely, that Lhuyd didn't  
actually hear his <lyv>
but derived it from the plural <lyvyow> and from the singular <lyf>,  
which he came across
in Origo Mundi (we know he had read OM because he quotes from it at  
AB: 265).

If in KS we are going to base our spelling upon the texts, then we  
should write
singular <lyw>, <liv> (the latter representing <lyf> in OM) and plural  
I prefer lyw, livyow.

I apologise for writing *lywow for lywyow "colours"; I thought I had  
indeed written
lywyow; my eyesight is not what it was. *Lywyow "colours" is not  

The only attested word for "colours" in the plural in Cornish is either
colors (yma S paul worth agan payntia ny in mes in colors in leas  
tellars in scriptur "St Paul paints us out in colours in many places  
in Scripture" TH 7a)  or
colorys (Colorys cler "Bright colours" BK 1712).
The singular *color occurs with spirantised initial in: me re jangyas  
ow holor "I have changed my colour" BK 3130.


On 25 Du 2009, at 17:59, Michael Everson wrote:

> On 25 Nov 2009, at 17:56, Michael Everson wrote:
>> It bothers me; I much prefer (since we have the choice) liv pl  
>> livyow for 'flood' and lyw pl lywow for 'colour'.
> Recte lywyow pl of 'colour'
> Michael Everson * http://www.evertype.com/
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> Spellyans at kernowek.net
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