Page:A handbook of the Cornish language; Chiefly in its latest stages with some account of its history and literature.djvu/81

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62
GRAMMER

form the guttural c'h of Breton, the ch of German, Welsh, and Gaelic, or the guttural gh of older English. At the end of a word this is to be written gh. It is a smooth guttural, as in Scottish Gaelic, without the rasping sound which it has in colloquial Welsh or in German.

7. j is sounded as in English. It generally represents what was once written s. Lhuyd writes dzh for this sound, and the MSS. often represent it by g.

8. k is generally only used before e, i, y, or as a final. It has the same sound as in English. It often happens in grammatical inflections that a broad root vowel is changed to a thin one. In such cases if the preceding letter is a c it must be changed to k.

9. l has the ordinary English sound. Sometimes a double l of earlier Cornish was written lh (telhar, place, for teller). This may perhaps represent the aspirated ll of Welsh, or (as in Portuguese) the l mouille (as li in valiant).

10. m has usually the same sound as in English. When it follows a short vowel in an accented syllable or a monosyllable, it has a peculiar sound as though a b were prefixed to it, or as though the speaker had a slight cold in the head. This b was frequently written in the later MSS., and in the mouths of less educated persons the b supplanted the m altogether. Thus lemmyn, now, became successively lebman and lebban. The vanishing of the m altogether did not occur in monosyllables, and it is undesirable to imitate it in other words. In the system of spelling adopted in this book, the b will be written in cases where it was habitually written in later Cornish, but even when it is not written it is always to be sounded in the case of short vowels in accented syllables or monosyllables.

11. n is usually sounded as in English. When it