[Spellyans] The recent englyn

Craig Weatherhill craig at agantavas.org
Tue Jul 26 10:56:43 BST 2011

The modern Cornish Gorseth has always justified its existence on an  
"ancient Welsh triad" of the 3 Gorseths of the Isle of Britain,the  
third being "Beisgawen in Dumnonia" (hence the 1st Gorseth being held  
at the Boscawen-un stone circle)

I checked with Rachel Bromwich and it turns out that this "ancient  
Welsh triad" is, in fact, an 18th century invention by Iolo Morgannwg!!


On 26 Gor 2011, at 10:22, Hewitt, Stephen wrote:

> There is also Iolo Morgannwg's spurious prophecy of Taliesin:
> Hir y bydd Brython, fal Carcharorion,
> Ym mraint Alltudion Tir SAXONIA,
> Eu Ner a folant Eu Hiaith a gadwant
> Eu Tir a gollant ond Gwyllt WALIA.
> TALIESIN, anno 550.
> […their language they shall keep; their land they shall lose, except  
> for Wild Wales]
> Long shall the Britons humbled low remain,
> For ages drag the Saxons' galling chain;
> But faithful still their Ancient God adore,
> Pure keep their language as in days of tore;
> Be robb'd of native lands, from all exil'd,
> But Walia's rough uncultivated wild.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: spellyans-bounces at kernowek.net [mailto:spellyans-bounces at kernowek.net 
> ] On Behalf Of Craig Weatherhill
> Sent: Tuesday, July 26, 2011 11:16 AM
> To: Standard Cornish discussion list
> Subject: Re: [Spellyans] The recent englyn
> Except, Andrew, that all the Celtic nations have a similar saying:
> IRISH:  Tir gan teanga, tir gan anam (A country without a language is
> a country without a soul)
> GAELIC: Tir gun teanga, tir gun anam
> MANX: Gyn chengey, gyn cheer (Without a language, without a country)
> WELSH: Cenedl heb iaith, cenedl heb galon (A nation without a language
> is a nation without a heart)
> BRETON: Hep Brezhoneg, Breizh ebet (Without Breton, no Brittany)
> All these languages have been, or still are, threatened by that of the
> adjoining majority nation, sometimes forcibly.  It's not that long ago
> that Welsh children heard speaking their own language in school would
> be publicly humiliated, and the Bretons are still having big problems
> with the Paris government.  Even the threat of extinction would prompt
> the people into realising that loss of their language would mean the
> loss of the most visible symbol of their identity, and that
> assimilation will quickly follow.  Once that takes hold, then the very
> identity dies.
> Here, the Cornish have the problem of so many of their own number
> believing what they have been told at school, and still told by the
> media - that they are English (which is appalling behaviour).
> Happily, other Cornish people know different and are actively
> countering this fallacy.  The internet has been a massive boon in that
> regard, but we encounter Anglocentric editing and worse in the  
> process.
> Craig
> On 26 Gor 2011, at 09:42, A. J. Trim wrote:
> > The recent englyn is a curious piece of writing.
> >
> > I find it difficult to accept the usual interpretation:- i.e. that
> > you should use the Cornish language else you'll lose "national"
> > identity - however true that might be.
> >
> > This was apparently written in Middle Cornish times, and already it
> > claims to have been an old saying that had always been true. I don't
> > believe that the people then would have been saying this about any
> > loss of their language. Who else would they have known about who had
> > lost their language and had suffered in some way? - certainly not
> > enough to make this a generalised rule that was worth committing to
> > memory by way of a rhyming saying.
> >
> > So, does anyone know what it really meant?
> >
> >
> > Regards,
> >
> > Andrew J. Trim
> > _______________________________________________
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> > Spellyans at kernowek.net
> > http://kernowek.net/mailman/listinfo/spellyans_kernowek.net
> --
> Craig Weatherhill
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Craig Weatherhill

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