Vocab for SSi Cornish

Lesson 1

my a vynn - I want
gul - to do
y wul - to do it
gweles - to see
y weles - to see it
my a yll - I can
ha (hag before vowel) - and
kewsel Kernewek - to speak Cornish
konvedhes - to understand
dybri - to eat
kavos - to have
neppyth - something
lemmyn - now
diwettha - later
res yw dhymm - I need
da yw genev vy - I like


Lesson 2

ny vynnav vy - I don’t want
ny allav vy - I can’t
hwath - yet
nyns yw res dhymm - I don’t need
mes - but
hedhyw - today
nyns yw da genev vy - I don’t like
tra vyth - anything (with negative)
prena - to buy
chi - house
godhvos - to know
gorthyp - answer
an - the
ri - to give
ri dhis - to give you

Incidentally, I notice in the middle of this lesson, “nyns yw res dhymm” (I don’t need) is turned into something like “nyns eus res dhymm”, with no explanation — both Pol and Julia do it. Then it later switches back to “nyns yw res dhymm”, equally inexplicably, and stays that way for the rest of the lesson, and for the rest of the course as far as I remember. Does anyone here know why that is?? I’m pretty sure “nyns yw” is the usual form there, but I’d be glad to know whether that variation is another acceptable way of saying it.

Hope no-one minds me posting the vocab here — I just thought it was a good excuse to go through the course again and would be a help to others who are wanting to know the spelling! :wink: I’m following the Standard Written Form (which is used in the official online Cornish dictionary), but I’m not an expert, so please let me know if you can see any mistakes.


Lesson 3

ty a vynn - you want
govyn - to ask
ty a yll - you can
res yw dhis - you need / you have to
da yw genes - you like
leverel - to tell / to say
leverel dhymm - to tell me
ri dhymm - to give me
pyth - what
pyth a vyn’ta - what you want
leverel dhis - to tell you
my a wra - I’m going to
ty a wra - you’re going to


Thank you VERY much, Courtenay - that’s a wonderful contribution… :star: :star2:

That sounds like a hiccup in the translating, I’d imagine - thank you very much for flagging it up - once we’re running the Cornish stuff through the new course creation tool, it’ll be much easier to fix this sort of stuff, but it’s very, very helpful to have a list in the meantime… :sunny:


You make me more and more curious how this magnificent tool works (umm … well … tec spirit in me is curious anyway … ) :slight_smile: This sounds more and more interesting … :slight_smile:


Brilliant, @Courtenay. Thank you sooo very much))


Lesson 4

fatel - how
fatel wra y wul - how to do it
prag - why
prag yth yw res dhis - why do you need to/have to?
karr - car
prag y fyn’ta - why (do) you want
diberth - to leave
a-vorow - tomorrow
mos - to go
ena - there
ny vyn’ta - you don’t want

Another little anomaly in this one — a couple of times “hwath” (yet) becomes “na hwath” with no explanation.

By the way, I’m not absolutely sure of the spelling of “vynnta” (as in “pyth a vynnta”, etc.), so if anyone has seen it written properly, please do correct me on this or any other mistakes.

This lesson, incidentally, contains one sentence that’s so hard to get your head around in English, let alone Cornish, that Pol advises you to “pour yourself a rum ‘n’ shrub” if you get it right — and if you reach the point where you can do it without the pause button, “finish off the bottle and have a dance in the street!!” :grin:


I’ve seen it in passing, and I’m about 99% sure that’s right… :sunny:

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Lesson 5

pellgewsel - to call (on telephone)
pellgewsel orthis - to call you
pellgewsel orthiv - to call me
ny wra’v vy - I’m not going to
my a vynsa - I would like
dyffrans - different
benyn - woman
didheurek - interesting
a-dro dhe - about
genes - with you
mater - a matter
posek - important


Lesson 6

nyns yw res dhis - you don’t need to/have to
ny yll’ta - you can’t
genev vy - with me
ty a vynsa - you would like
haneth - tonight
henna - that
fatel wre’ta - how you (do something)
ny wre’ta - you’re not going to
prag nag yw res dhis - why you don’t need to/have to


By the way, I should add I’m not sure if “you’re not going to” is ny wreta or na wreta — it’s hard to make out on the recording. I also have a vague inkling in my head somehow that it needs an apostrophe — as in wre’ta. But I can’t remember where I’ve seen it written before (if I have), so can’t check it just yet! :wink: If I do run across any errors like that, I’ll correct them here ASAP.


I’ve seen it as wre’ta with the apostrophe - and mostly as ‘ny wreta’, but it sounds like the kind of thing that might change in different circumstances, perhaps - possibly, hypothetically, just floating the idea kind of thing… :sunny:

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Thanks, Aran. I’ve added the apostrophe to that and the other phrases that involve “-ta” for “you”, as I have a feeling it is actually a contraction, though I can’t confirm that yet. Pronouns in Kernewek aren’t as straightforward as they are in English… :grin:


Lesson 7

dyski - to learn
assaya - to try
yth esov vy owth assaya - I am trying
praktisya - to practise
perthi kov (a) - to remember
hwath - still, yet
gwellhe - to improve

It’s from this one on that Pol starts referring to the lessons as “challenges”! :wink:


Challenge 8

leverel - to say
yn Kernewek - in Cornish
an pyth a vynnav vy - what I want
gwell via dhymm - I’d better
my a vynnas - I wanted
an pyth a vynnas vy - what I wanted
dalleth - to start
my a dhallethas - I started
my re dhallethas - I have started


I just remembered that @christopherlee in another thread mentioned three errors he’d found in Challenge 8 — I noticed these too and am relieved to find it wasn’t just my imagination!! Here they are:

@ approx. 12.58 - “assaya” (to try) is missing after Julia says “My a vynnsa…”
@ approx. 27.48 - again the word “assaya” is omitted in translation
@ approx. 36.44 - Pol says to translate “I would like to try…” which should be “My a vynnsa assaya…”, but the translation then given by both speakers is “Gwell via dhymm assaya…” - “I’d better try…”


I believe the correct SWF spellings are a wre’ta, ny wre’ta, fatel wre’ta — a vyn’ta, prag y fyn’ta, ny vyn’ta; my a vynsa — ny yll’ta with two LL in forms of gallav but one N in the forms of mynnes that you mentioned. I’m basing that on the sample verb conjugations in the document Specification Final Version.pdf aka An Outline of the Standard Written Form of Cornish.

You will often see vynn’ta, fynn’ta, mynnsa used which is, I believe, the correct spelling in Kernewek Kemmyn which many Cornish speakers/writers are more used to than SWF but I think those are not SWF spellings. (The nn versus n spellings in SWF usually depend on the Late pronunciation which is men’ta, menja here rather than mednta, mednja that would be expected for an SWF spelling with nn. Some other forms of mynnes do have dn in Late Cornish and thus nn in SWF, e.g. the infinitive mynnes itself.)

Note also prag y fyn’ta with y (pronounced like a shwa here, I think, since it’s an unstressed particle) rather than prag a fyn’ta with a.

Also, ny wrav vy has no apostrophe; the -v is part of the verb form itself, not a pronoun.

And I think that the past tense of dalleth is my a/re dhallathas with -a-, though I have no way to check the SWF spelling of this; there is, sadly, no SWF book of verb conjugations yet so except for the dozen or so verbs conjugated in the SWF specification itself, one can only guess. If the Unified Cornish verbs book and the Kernewek Kemmyn verbs book agree on a spelling, then presumably that will be the SWF spelling as well, but if not, then…

On the other hand, since SWF only wants to standardise spelling, not grammar, presumably in case of disagreement, both spellings (possibly with slight modifications to fit SWF principles) should be valid Cornish.

As for ny wre’ta versus na wre’ta: na wredh (without ’ta, and so with full verb ending) would be a translation of ‘no’ as an answer to a question but if you then go on to make a statement, it would start with ny wre’ta. (na is also used in negative relative clauses such as ‘The book that I do not write’, an lyver na wrav (vy) y skrifa, but I presume SSiC doesn’t teach that sort of thing just yet.)

Feel free to ask me other things; Cornish hasn’t been at the forefront of my language efforts but I did study it for about two years, passed the Cornish Language Board’s third exam, and like to think I have a reasonable handle on it, especially on SWF spelling.


Brilliant! :star2: :sunglasses: :star2: Thanks so much, Philip. I was hoping there’d be someone here who could help with the spelling. I’ll make the relevant edits to the vocab lists as soon as I have time to go through them.

I will also be adding Lessons 9 and 10 as soon as I can! :wink:

Both ‹nyns yw res dhymm› “I’don’t need” is correct, as is ‹nyns eus res› which means “there is no need”. ‹Eus› is used in the latter sense because there isn’t a definite subject. It’s like asking “is there?” which is ‹eus?›, for example, ‹Eus keus?› “Is-there (any) cheese?” By the same token, you can ask: ‹Eus res?› “Is-there (any) need?” - you wouldn’t use ‹yw› in this context.


Eus Keus - just like Welsh - Oes Caws - interesting!