Really interested in studying cornish...

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Darkling
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Really interested in studying cornish...

Postby Darkling » 25 Jun 2006, 23:50

Hello, Could anybody give me some information on how to go about this? I'm westcountry born and bred - lived in Cornwall and Devon for most of my life. I'm in London now and would like to know how I can learn to speak, read and write Cornish. Thanks! :-) xxx

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Crystal Dragon
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Postby Crystal Dragon » 28 Jun 2006, 16:30

I found this site on the internet which has lots of info on the Cornish Language, it includes a dictionary, phrase section, place names and so on. There is also some information on learning the Cornish  language either via a postal/email course, local adult eductaion courses and details of a course available in London. Hope its of some interest:

http://www.cornish-language.org

I have lived in Cornwall just over 18 years now and no I do not speak Cornish. I do know a few people that do and similar to other languages it can have regional variations, it also seems a very difficult language to learn, Good Luck.
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Lora
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Postby Lora » 28 Jun 2006, 16:38

Darkling, I've heard before that there are classes in Cornish at the City Lit. I just checked and they are still doing them.   I don't know if you're familiar with the City Lit but it's in a fairly central part of London. http://www.citylit.ac.uk/
Last edited by Lora on 02 Jul 2006, 23:53, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Unikorn » 01 Jul 2006, 11:57

Hi, you could check out this course - which my husband, who is Cornish and does speak some ... are doing together

Happy journeys

http://www.kdlcornish.freeserve.co.uk/
WELCOME to the online home of Kernewek Dre Lyther, the successful Cornish language correspondence course now available via the Internet.

KDL aims to prepare students for the examinations of the Cornish Language Board. Of the more than three hundred students that have enrolled since 1983, many have been successful in one or more of the Board's examinations, with thirty two achieving the highest grade and being made Bards of the Cornish Gorsedd.

The KDL First Grade Course is available online for a fee of just £10, which includes the cost of the accompanying audio cassette.
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wyeuro
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Postby wyeuro » 06 Jul 2006, 07:00

Hi, I'm doing the KDL course, too.  It's amazingly reasonably priced, and a really good language course.  I'd recommend it to anyone.  You can do it online now.

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Darkling
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Postby Darkling » 08 Jul 2006, 22:13

Hey thanks for those links - I shall hopefully be starting to study alongside the Bardic grade - hoping to start in September  :D

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Postby AndyN » 09 Jul 2006, 11:58

Yes KDL is good.

You may want to consider which version of Cornish you want to learn though. Cornish has had to be reconstructed and there are differeing views about which is the most authentic.

At the moment the main contenders are Kernewek Kemmyn, Unified Cornish,  Unified Cornish Revised and Late Cornish.

KDL caters for, I think, both Unified and KK - at least it used to.

Unified Cornish is what everyone used until the 1960s. It's mostly the work of Robert Morton Nance and is the version of Cornish still used by the Cornish Gorsedh. However once academics had pointed out that because Morton Nance left no comprehensive notes demonstrating how he had authenticated what he did the language was looked at again.

Some carried on using UC. It's OK - there are quite a lot of texts in it, but it doesn't have a phonetic spelling system. It's quite close to many of the historic texts and its based on Middle Cornish from the period before English had a marked effect on its grammar.

One group developed Kernewek Kemmyn. They looked at Middle Cornish and worked out the  grammar from scratch and added a phonetic spelling system, which makes it easier to learn. UC and KK are very close cousins, though there are some small differences in pronunciation, showing what a good job Mortion-Nance did. There are far more books and other resources available in KK than in any other version of Cornish.  It's the most widely used in Cornwall. It is criticised by those who don't like it for its phonetic spellings and because computers were used to carry out an analysis of phonemes etc. in the old texts some people like to call it computer Cornish.

Another group decided to look at Cornish as it was last spoken and there is now a quite vociferous Late Cornish lobby. The grammar is somewhat more "stream-lined" than the other versions and more like English. At one time it was said that you could use any spelling for any word that had been written down, but lately there has been a standardisation.  

The new kid on the block is Unified Cornish Revised. It's an improvement on UC but is not so far as I know based on a re-analysis of the language from the bottom up. It doesn't have a phonetic spelling system. Some people think it might be the version that everyone can agree to use, but these are Cornish people we're talking about...

I recommend KK, but Late Cornish is just as "authentic". I don't see any advantage in using UC and am a tad unconvinced that a few tweaks deasl with some of the problems with it so I'm not altogether convinced by UCR. I have tried repeatedly to find any books, leaflets, etc. in it in local shops with no success.

If anyone is feeling like finding out more about the controversy about Cornish language then the annual series "Cornish Studies" published by the University of Exeter Press contains quite a few heated articles.

Bennathow

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Postby Darkling » 11 Jul 2006, 16:06

OMG. I had no idea is was quite *that* complicated! I knew there were a number of different versions but... It seems there's a real quest for "authenticity" which is great, but I don't want that to cloud my studies at least until I get a better feel for it. I'd like to learn because I'd love to be able to read some older texts. I'd also like to write it too. I also feel it's a rather disregarded language for various reasons (perhaps due to the confusions you outlined in your post!) and as I was born in that part of the world I feel an affinity towards it (plus I tend to side with the under dog lol)

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Postby wyeuro » 12 Jul 2006, 04:11

The Kemmyn course with KDL is simple, realistic and organised and takes you to where you can do all that  - speak it, write it and read the old texts and it's possible to ignore all the controversy and just do it. (My opinion only of course!)  
wyverne

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Postby AndyN » 12 Jul 2006, 09:48

And if you learn Kemmyn you'll have access to a great many more books, tapes and other resources to help you learn. It is the most widely used form and I think it's the easiest to learn.

If you can't get to any evening classes in Cornish, which are likely to be thin on the ground outside Cornwall, then learning Kemmyn via KDL is about your best option.

Hap da dhe studhyoryon kernenewk oll

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Postby Unikorn » 13 Jul 2006, 03:49

Of course, coming to the UK and abducting your own live Cornish man to take home works too :grin:

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Kirsti
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Postby wyeuro » 13 Jul 2006, 04:07

Hi Kirsti,
Is it true what I'm beginning to suspect from my deep, multi-dimensional studies of kernewek kemmyn, that the original Cornish people were hobbits?  They were shorter than they are now of course (although most of the tall ones 'moseyed' over to the US to become cowboys, or were abducted by itinerant kiwis), and seemed to have been living in earth burrows and doing all sorts of quaint things with magic rings (circles) of power.  Just wondering...  I mean it's time we did some 'real' history :grin:
wyverne


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