Thursday, 23 February 2017

Taking a new look at Cornish grammar 32 (question and negative forms of boas locative)

We have already looked at the affirmative of boas (SWFM bos) to be. Now let’s compare it with the interrogative. As we have seen previously, where the verbal particle th/yth is used, it stops the sentence from being a question. So, to ask a question we drop the verbal particle. But what happens where there is no th/yth? The question equivalent of ma is üjy (SWFM usi).

N.B. üjy rhymes with English “squidgy”

Thero vy
Yth esov vy
I am
Ero vy?
Esov vy?
Am I?
Yth esos ta
You are (familiar)
Esos ta?
Are you?
Ma va
Yma ev
He/it is
Üjy va
Usi ev
Is he/it?
Ma hei
Yma hi
She/it is
Üjy va
Usi ev
Is she/it?
Thero nei
Yth eson ni
We are
Ero nei?
Eson ni?
Are we?
Thero whei
Yth esowgh hwi
You are (formal or plural)
Ero whei?
Esowgh hwi?
Are you?
Mons / Mowns
or Ma anjei
Ymons i
They are
Üjy anjei?
Usens i?
Are they?

Here are some examples (turning the statements in Descans 7 into questions). The interrogative form of the verb is shown:

Ero vy obma?
Esov vy omma?
Am I here?
Esta obma?
Esos ta omma?
Are you here? 
Üjy va obma?
Usi ev omma?
Is he/it here?
Üjy hei obma?
Usi hi omma?
Is she/it here?
Ero nei ena?
Eson ni ena?
Are we there?
Ero whei ena?
Esowgh hwi ena?
Are you there?
Üjy anjei ena?
Üjens ena?
Usens i ena?
Are they there?

We can now go a step further and make negative statements, by placing the negative particle nag (SWFM nyns) in front of the question:

Nag ero vy obma.
Nyns esov vy omma.
I am not here.
Nag esta obma.
Nyns esos ta omma.
You are not here. 
Nag üjy va obma.
Nyns usi ev omma.
He/it is not here.
Nag üjy hei obma.
Nyns usi hi omma.
She/it is not here.
Nag ero nei ena.
Nyns eson ni ena.
We are not there.
Nag ero whei ena.
Nyns esowgh hwi ena.
You are not there.
Nag üjy anjei ena.
Nag üjens ena.
Nyns usens i ena.
They are not there.

Saturday, 11 February 2017

Taking a new look at Cornish grammar 31 (indefinite pronouns as objects)

Let’s look at some straightforward examples where indefinite pronouns can be used with transitive verbs, such as drei SWFM dri to bring, rei SWFM ri to give, kemeres to take, profya to offer, gara SWFM gasa to leave, perna SWFM prena to buy, gwerha SWFM gwertha to sell, etc., as direct objects:

Me a wra drei nepeth.
SWFM My a wra dri neppyth.
I will bring something.
Ma va o rei pub tra.
SWFM Yma ev ow ri puptra.
He is giving everything.
Hei a gemeras lies.
SWFM Hi a gemeras lies.
She took a lot (much).
Na wrüg an den-na profya tra veth.
SWFM Ny wrug an den-na profya tra vyth.
That man didn’t offer anything. That man offered nothing.
A wra whei gara neb tra?
SWFM A wra hwi gasa neb tra?
Will you leave something?
Are you going to leave anything?
Ma’n düs erel o perna keniver onan.
SWFM Yma’n dus erel ow prena keniver onan.
The other people are buying every single one.
Marchons coth a wrüg gwerha lies tra.
SWFM Marchons koth a wrug gwertha lies tra.
Old merchants sold many things.
On occasions indefinite pronouns may be occur as indirect objects:
Thero vy o perna ro rag keniver onan.
SWFM Yth esov vy ow prena ro rag keniver onan.
I am buying everyone a present.
I am buying a present for everyone.
Mowns o tanon lether dhe bubonan.
SWFM Ymons i ow tanvon lyther dhe bubonan.
They are sending everybody a letter.
They are sending a letter to everybody.
When translating from English to Cornish you may be surprised to discover that something which is an object in English becomes a subject in Cornish, while a subject becomes an indirect object. This is why it is important to learn correct idioms rather than try doing direct word by word translations. In Late Cornish we use a passive construction for having, liking and loathing; this involves both forms (locative and descriptive) of boas (SWFM bos) to be.

Pub tra ew da genam.
SWFM Pub tra yw da genev.
Everything is good with me.
I like everything.
Nag ew tra veth da genam.
SWFM Nyns yw tra vyth da genev.
Nothing is good with me.
I like nothing.
I don’t like anything.

Keniver tra ew cas gen Jory.
SWFM Keniver tra yw kas gans Jori.

Everything is hateful with George.
George hates everything.
Nag eus tra veth dhe nei.
SWFM Nyns eus tra vyth dhe ni.
There is nothing to us.
There isn’t anything to us.
We have nothing.
We don’t have anything.

Monday, 6 February 2017

Taking a new look at Cornish grammar 30 (describing indefinite pronouns)

Let’s have a look at how you use an indefinite pronoun as the subject where the predicate contains a descriptor. For this the descriptive form of boas (SWFM bos) is used. With the indefinite pronouns we only need the third person
present tense Thew SWFM Yth yw
past tense (imperfect) Tho SWFM Yth o

We have already seen some negative examples (and we can easily change their tense):
Nag ew nagonan a bris.
SWFM Nyns yw nagonan a bris.
No-one is important.
Nag ew tra veth dhe les.
Nyns yw tra vyth dhe les.
Nothing is interesting.
Nag o nagonan a bris.
SWFM Nyns o nagonan a bris.
No-one was important.
Nag o tra veth dhe les.
Nyns o tra vyth dhe les.
Nothing was interesting.

Now let’s look at some positive examples. Word order can be varied according to what you want to stress. The most important thing comes first:

Nebonan ew strolyek.
SWFM Nebonan yw strolyek.
Somebody is messy.
Neb tra ew flerüs.
SWFM Neb tra yw flerys.
Something is smelly.
Môsek ew neb peth.
SWFM Mosek yw neb pyth.
Something is smelly.
Thew neppeth apert.
SWFM Yth yw neppyth apert.
Something is obvious.
Thew pubonan pur wheg.
SWFM Yth yw pubonan pur hweg.

Everyone is very nice.
Attes ew pub tra.
SWFM Attes yw pub tra.

Everything is comfortable.
Costek o keniver onan.
SWFM Kostek o keniver onan.

Every single one was expensive.
Keniver tra o drog.
SWFM Keniver tra o drog.

Everything was bad.
Tho kettep hüny lowen.
SWFM Yth o kettep huni lowen.

Everyone was happy.
Tho lies onan plos.
SWFM Yth o lies onan plos.

Many were dirty.
Coynt o lies tra.
SWFM Koynt o lies tra.

Many things were strange.
Teg o lies hüny.
SWFM Teg o lies huni.
Many were beautiful.