Learning Cornish language – part two

In our first Learning Cornish blog we began by looking at basic greetings, numbers and days of the week. We’ll now go a little further into the Cornish language and look at how to pronounce some of the letters and expand our vocabulary.

It’s quite a tricky language to pick up, so you may need to refresh yourself with the basics again before looking at the pronunciation and grammar we are going to touch on now.


a – as in ‘cat’
â – as in ‘same’
c – as ‘k’
dh – as ‘th’ in ‘bathe’
e – as in ‘get’
ê – as ‘ai’ in ‘main’
ey – as ‘i’ in ‘bike’
eu and ew – ‘e-oo’
gh – as a breathed ‘h’
o – as in ‘hot’, but at the end of a word and in ‘ogh’ as ‘oh’
ô – as ‘aw’ and ‘oo’, word dependant
ow – soft ‘oo’
oy – as ‘oo-ee’
r – slightly rolled
u – as ‘ee’
û – as ‘oo’
wh – breathed as ‘hw’
y – as ‘i’ in ‘pin’
ŷ – as ‘ee’ in ‘seen’


yeyn – cold
tom – warm
comolek – wind
howl – sun
gwal – rain


kês – cheese
amanyn – butter
lêth – milk
bara – bread
oyow – eggs
sucra – sugar
kyfŷth – jam
doravallow – potatoes
hern – pilchards

More numbers

whêgh – 6
seyth – 7
êth – 8
naw – 9
dêk – 10
unnek – 11
deudhek – 12
tredhek – 13
peswardek – 14
pymthek – 15
whêtek – 16
seytek – 17
êtek – 18
nawnjek – 19
ugans – 20


mŷ – I
tŷ – you (singular)
êf – he, it
hŷ – she, it
nŷ – we
whŷ – you (plural and formal)
ŷ – they

yth esof vŷ – I am
yth esos jŷ – you are
ymá ef – he is
ymá hŷ – she is
yth eson nŷ – we are
yth esough whŷ – you are
ymóns ŷ – they are

Now you need to find some like minded Cornish speaking folk to practice with!

Next, it’s time for part three of Learning Cornish

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By | 2017-01-25T15:00:58+00:00 July 26th, 2016|Arts, Culture and Festivals|0 Comments

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