[Spellyans] 'Cornish'

nicholas williams njawilliams at gmail.com
Wed Nov 23 10:28:11 GMT 2011

Not really. If we want to say 'the Cornish Gorsedd' for example we say Gorseth Kernow.
Similarly 'Cornish Archaeology' is Hendhyscas Kernow. Since, however, Kernow is definite,
the word before it is also definite. 

The only example I can think of in the texts of Kernowek used to mean 'of Cornwall, Cornish' is the following in a letter
from John Boson to William Gwavas dated 5 April 1710:
Me ri marci dh'eu rag goz Neuodhou vorth an kenza Den Kernuak 'I give thanks to you for your news about the first Cornish man'
(Padel, Cornish Writings of the Boson Family 46, 47).

Boson's knowledge of Cornish is not perfect here. Me ri is very curious, for example.
The expression den Kernowek for 'Cornishman' is also very odd. A native speaker would, one would think, have
used Kernow; cf.

y'n gylwyr Arthur Cornow 'He is called Arthur, the Cornishman' BK 1658
Na thowtyans rag sham na Cornow na Scot 'Let him not for shame fear either Cornishman or Scot' 2486-87.

For 'Cornish' other than the language I use either Kernow, i.e. Gorseth Kernow or a Gernow, e.g. nebes scolers a Gernow 'some Cornish
scholars'. The use of a Gernow allows us to keep the preceding noun indefinite.

If you want to say 'I am Cornish' you say Kernow ov vy or Kernowes ov vy.
'We are Cornish' is Kernowyon on ny.


On 2011 Du 22, at 19:13, Craig Weatherhill wrote:

> Is there any textual evidence of "Kernowek" being used to mean 'Cornish', other than reference to the language?

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