Hi, I’m really interested in the Cornish language and I noticed there’s a lot of different forms of Cornish. Which is the most widely spoken and what’s the form being used on this course?
Welcome at the forum.
There Which version of Cornish is taught? is another thread about this topic. Maybe it helps.
Is there a memrise course for the vocab?
Hi Matanic, I have recently started to learn Cornish. I think that Kernewek Kemmyn (Common Cornish) is perhaps the most widely spoken one and this is based on the Middle Period (14 - 16 centuries). It is my belief that the SSIC course is based on this period. Another very popular variety is the Modern Cornish which is based on the Cornish that was last spoken in the 17 - 18 centuries. I personally am learning the Desky Kernewek course which is actually based on what is termed the ‘Tudor Period’ which is based on the crossover period between the two varieties i.e. (16 -17) centuries. I feel that this gives a good bridge between the two. The tutor who is helping to shape this course is called Dan Prohaska and he is so gifted and absolutely brilliant! If I email him with any questions or any problems or confusion he will always give a very speedy and straightforward answer with explanations about anything including on the different varients which I find invaluable, You can find him and download his course lessons on the Soundcloud, if they are not all there don’t worry, he will make sure you can get them all and he is a thoroughly nice bloke. I also am learning the SSIC variety too just in case I decide to go with this variety instead - it pays to keep one’s options open. But up until now I am finding the DK course the easier one. Hope this helps you and I wish you good luck!
Lowena dhewgh, Chris,
Thanks for your kind words about my course, and me!
Welcom o whei Dan. Chris
Hi Matanic having been involved with SSiC from the start and the many stalled initiatives surrounding the revival of Cornish in this century, I can honestly say that abandoning the concept of ‘forms’ and the notion of orthography is the best way forward.
There is, of course, a place for linguistic research and historical accuracy but it acts as a drag on meaningful revival in my opinion. The best form to my ears is that which my son’s godchildren (4 and 5) speak. When teaching we are pulled towards what young people ‘like’ and use in speech. For Cornish this leads to happy engagement in alliteration and a preference for Breton and Welsh loan words over English (although this could parental/teacher prejudice coming through).
For us SSiC is perfect because it allows a learner to dodge the arguments regarding what is ‘correct’ and ‘authentic’ in terms of form. Once a learner becomes proficient at understanding and speaking they can take their Cornish in whatever direction they like. I suppose if we have to pinned down on this subject we are putting prosody and language patterns to the fore and leaving orthography, in particular, for another time.
The vocab for all the lessons is available in the course itself, if you click on “Vocabulary List” under the audio player.
Yn hwir, Mike yw ewn…
bomm bras - big bang, pysk pitsa - anchovy, kyv-kov - memory stick, klappkodh - mobile phone, ha popti-ping - microwave oven - ok we nicked that from Welsh but hardly use korrdonner these days. Pik-pik ‘fizzy’ we pinched from Breton. But we love alliteration and the vast majority of phrases are self generated here in Cornwall, e.g. dehen dens ‘tooth paste’ - lit. ‘tooth cream’ , lyver lavar ‘phrase book’ lit. ‘sentence book’, Kevin an kanker Kembrek in Orvil an Morvil books!
Oll an gwella, (internal rhyme with ll) - just can’t stop myself!
Hi there Mike,
I do hope you’ll forgive this intrusion but I believe you are the Mike whom Aran was referring to when I was trying to find out something more about a further course in SSIC. Last I heard was that a second course was being compiled but that was over a year ago now and I have heard no further news regarding this since. I know Pol was having a job to find a replacement for Julia when she dropped out of doing further coursework. Have you any news on where things stand at this moment in time? Hope to hear something from you in the near future, until then, all the very best for the future. Chris.
Thanks for your patience. We have all struggled with getting together at the same time since the office was closed then the new system we are using etc etc but hopefully we should get some recording done in April.
That’s great news - thanks for sharing, @miketresidder-1
I bet ya get fed up with this being mentioned lol…but its now September
Seriously though I understand people are busy and these things take time!
if I still lived in Kernow (I do miss her) I would attend the courses but I don’t so the audio courses are my best option. unless there is a kernewek speaker in Norwich who wants to come for a chat when I’m at work
oll an gwella
We’ve had some ‘deal with the changing/growing software’ type questions going to and fro with Mike and Pol recently - they’ve definitely got things going on, so with luck it won’t be all that much longer before they can publish some more lessons…
I might venture to say this whole saga is a good illustration of that famous Cornish dialect word “dreckly”…
Also, to be fair on Pol and friends, they have done a good job recently with the new Memrise course, which is a good complement to the SSi course and worth doing (there’s not that much overlap in content, but you get to practise different skills with each and get a good general feel for how the language works). I’d just love more SSiCornish because it gets you thinking and putting words together for yourself really fast — much more speaking practice than you get in most do-it-yourself language courses.
I was in a meeting with Pol on Saturday, and he said they’ve done a full day of voice recording in the past week, so it is being actively worked on. I think what Aran said, about the changing/ growing software might be a contributing factor maybe. It will be worth the wait, I’m sure…
A train of personal-curiosity-turned-burning-questions for my dear Cornish language counterparts: does there exist a purist conscientiousness or desire among speakers today to reproduce the presumed [native] pronunciation, prosody, phraseology of the pre-revival language in the absence of L1 speakers? What resources have been tapped and what efforts have been made in this vein? To what degree is modern Welsh considered an appropriate model? And is there a general consciousness/concern about widespread English substrate becoming canonical in the revived language (due to second language acquisition by L1 English speakers in adulthood), thus departing significantly from the original character of historical Cornish? (Think Yiddish substrate in Modern Hebrew). Any insight or further information is much appreciated
I don’t mind waiting at all, just curious as to how close/far it could be. Meur ras