A Bit About Gender
We know that nouns in Cornish can be either masculine or feminine, but how (apart from the obvious ones, such as den man and benyn woman) do we know which is which?
Some masculine words have a feminine equivalent ending in -es (similar to adding –ess in English). So lew lion becomes lewes lioness.
Other examples include:
arlòdhes lady, duchess
descador teacher (m)
descadores teacher (f)
gwarior actor, player (m)
gwariores actress, player (f)
car relation, relative (m)
cares female relative (f)
carer lover (m)
carores girlfriend, female lover (f)
mowes, mos girl
and, of course:
moas dhe’n mor en servis an Vetêrnes to go to sea in service of the Queen
rag an Arlòdhes an wlas Kernow for the Duchess of the land of Cornwall
Pandra ven’ta gwil gen ôst an chei?
What do you want to do with the host of the house (i.e. landlord)?
Obma ma ’gan ôstes nei, ha yonk ew hei…
Our hostess is here, and she is young…
Ha me o moas war an vorr As I was going along the road
me mettias gen mos ha clav o hy thor. I met a girl with a sick belly (pregnant!)
…thera an Metêrn ha’n Vetêrnes a Golodnow esedhys e’n tron …
… the King and Queen of Hearts were seated on their throne …
Ha’n Metêrn a garas Hester moy ‘vel oll an benenes erel …
And the King loved Esther more than all the other women …
O’whei Kernowes? Are you a Cornishwoman?
 This is the version based on Middle Cornish. Gendall has moaz for girl, maid, servant girl. Previous spellings include moes, moas, moaze, mauz, moze, môz, maôz – similar in appearance and sound to the verb to go.
 Middle Cornish spelling myghtern. In Late/Modern Cornish the middle –gh- is not pronounced. Gendall has matearn or matern. Unusually the stress is on the final syllable. [me-TERN] (The circumflex is used to show this unusual stress.)
 originally Thomas Tonkin
 originally Nicholas Boson
 from John of Ramshouse by Nicholas Boson
 SWFM fordh
 originally verse from Borlase manuscript
 from Alys en Pow Anethow, Chaptra 9
 Hester 2,17