[Spellyans] Fw: Cornish in a Thriller! & Place Name Query ForCraig

ewan wilson butlerdunnit at ntlworld.com
Thu Sep 6 21:31:31 BST 2012

Thanks, Craig, for the prompt reply.
I'd never heard of her before, either, but came across three of her books in a charity shop and as this one was set in Cornwall I thought it the next best thing to visiting it which I can't do this year. 
It's a wee bit 'slow' for a thriller, to be honest, but all the Penwith references make it fascinating. And she does seem to have done her homework on Cornish culture. 
I wonder if she was just taking some 'poetic licence' with the topography, especially as St Edzell is obviously fictitious, but from the decriptions can only be either St Ives or Penzance.  But the way she mentions the 'direct route' from there to Minack makes it sound as if you hit St Buryan first. Chy an Gweal...is that on the outskirts of Penzance?


  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Craig Weatherhill 
  To: Standard Cornish discussion list 
  Sent: Thursday, September 06, 2012 7:04 PM
  Subject: Re: [Spellyans] Fw: Cornish in a Thriller! & Place Name Query ForCraig

  Well, there are places with Gweal in their name:  Gwealcarn, Towednack;  Chy an Gweal, St Ives, to name just two, but there's no place called Gweal (as a simplex element), apart from Gweal, Scilly, which is a contraction of *gwydh-yel, "tree-grown" (it's far from being that now, but probably was in antiquity).

  I must admit, I've never heard of the book or its author.


  On 6 Gwn 2012, at 18:46, ewan wilson wrote:

    Think this went the wrong way and should have come here!
    ----- Original Message -----
    From: ewan wilson
    To: spellyans-bounces at kernowek.net
    Sent: Thursday, September 06, 2012 6:43 PM
    Subject: Cornish in a Thriller! & Place Name Query For Craig

    One does come across Cornish in the most peculiar places!
    I have been reading Wheel Fortune, a 'suspense thriller' written by a Karen Campbell and published by Wm. Collins&Sons back in 1973. The title's a play on the word 'Wheal', as it refers to a presumably fictitious Cornish tin mine somewhere on the Penwith Peninsula.
    Anyway, Miss Campbell obviously knew her UC as she has one old Cornish woman welcome back her young friend with the greeting:
    ' Da yu genef agas gweles.'  
    This young woman, having been raised in Cornwall, recalls at a later stage in the story some Cornish she knew:
    'Byth dorn rever dhe'n tavas re hyr.'

    At a crucial point in the action she is lured to the Minack Theatre and she writes:
    ' The direct route from Sr Edzell's to Minack is via St Buryan and Gweal- but I took the roundabout devious way on the unmade roads over the moor.'
    Now, I think St Edzell's is supposed to be either St Ives or Penzance but I cannot work out if there actually is a 'Gweal' around the Penwith Peninsula. If not, i'm baffled why she should mention an actual spot like St Buryan yet ficionalise a 'Gweal'! Craig- any ideas?
    I know next to nothing about this author, save that she penned a few 'suspense' novels in the early 70s and dedicated one to a 'Catherine Campbell McNeill of Kilchoman', presumably a relative and obviously Scottish as the name had hinted.
    I am left fascinated about how she came to know at least a working smattering of UC!!!
    Sorry this is a bit off topic but I thought Craig'd be worth while consulting and you'd all like to know the unlikely reach of Cornish!


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