Celtic Animals Celtic Animals
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Glossary

ReferenceGlossary

I don’t know about you, but when I run across a word that I don’t know, I look it up.

It’s much easier looking up words today because we can do it in the Internet. I still have my OED with magnifying glass, though.

You will find many strange words.here because the literary works here are from 19th C Cornwall. Some words are Cornish, some are Cornish dialect of English words, some are old English, and some are archaic English, at least in the meaning of the word as used in the text from which it came.

I have compiled a glossary for the words found here on these pages from the following sources:

* William Bottrell has a glossary and some Cornish words at the end of his third book, so I have included those.
* Margaret An n Courtney has a glossary and some Cornish words as well, so I have included those.
* I found that http://www.kereve.com/kernewek/cornish.pdf at the waybackmachine is good. I’m sorry the original web site is no longer available. I have included most of the old words there on the theory that old stories may have these words.
* For other Cornish words, I use http://www.freelang.net/ and http://www.howlsedhes.co.uk. Both are useful.
* I downloaded a copy of Jago’s Cornish dictionary (see the bibliography) and it is very good, being from the late 19th C.
* For unfamiliar and archaic words, I use my OED and the OED online, plus a few other online dictionaries.

On more than one occasion, I had to look up a word on the definition side of Mr Bottrell’s work because the word has since gone into obscurity, at least to me.

If you find an error, I will appreciate you emailing me about it. I am an amateur at Cornish and I am interested in knowing what the words mean, not to speak it. I will not be offended; I will be grateful to correct the wrong.

Bolster the Cornish Giant

Glossary for Cornish Folklore and Culture

The Cornish word is first, in bold, followed by its meaning:

a
a–dal opposite
a–dreus across
a–dro around
a–dryv behind
a–rag in front of
a–ugh above
a–vorow tomorrow
adit an entrance to an underground mine which is horizontal or nearly horizontal
agrimony a popular medicinal herb, being well known to country–folk
ague fever, chills, shivers, or trembling
airy–mouse a bat (animal)
Alban Scotland
alehoof an aromatic, perennial, evergreen creeper of the mint family
alembic something that refines or transmutes as if by distillation (alchemy)
alhwedh key
amari cupboard
an the
anist near
anker a liquid measure in Europe; the Dutch anker, formerly also used in England, contained about 10 of the old wine gallons, or 8–1/2 imperial gallons
annwn pronounced something like Ann–noon, this is the Celtic other world, the underworld, or the land of the dead. It is a place of great power and contained a cauldron that King Arthur had to travel into Annwn to fetch
aras plough
arbour a shady garden alcove enclosed with sides and a roof formed by trees or climbing plants trained over a wooden framework
areefaa exclamation: "dear me"
arghans money
arrea exclamation: "dear me" is my guess
arvor coast
Assize a court that formerly sat at intervals in each county of England and Wales to administer the civil and criminal law
astral a realm of being beyond the physical
aswonn recognise
attal refuse, consisting of defective grains, seeds, etc., on the "tail&quote (leeward end) of a winnowing sheet, as was was called by old "winsters"
austull a ceiling of boards
aval apple
avon river
b
back crook a Cornish wrestling position using a leg crooked over another
baking–iron a circular iron plate which lay on the oven hearth
bal a mine
ballowal a burrow
balsh small rope
baner flag
bannel a broom, a yellow flowering shrub
bannell a broom plant used as a dye and used to be used as a salad ingredient
bantling a small child
bara bread
bare–ridged bareback ridden
bargen–tir farm
barque or bark a type of sailing vessel with three or more masts having the foremasts rigged square and only the aftermast rigged fore–and–aft
barrow a mound of earth and stones over an ancient grave
bason a basin
bed–tester a bed canopy
beety to mend nets
ben–ma–brea woman of my heart
benen–vat a good woman
benkeyl a living stream
benow feminine
benyn woman
bern matter
berr short
betony a perennial grassland herb planted in graveyards against ghosts and to prevent bad dreams
Billy–be–damned the Devil; also Billy Bedam
blast I believe this to be a hot fire
blazonry heraldic devices
bleujenn flower
bloedh years of age
blunderbore Blunderbore is the Welsh giant in Jack the Giant– Killer that Jack that Jack kills, with the giant’s brother, with a noose and sword.
blydhen year
bob–pit this may be a pit for a balance bob; a large, counterndash;weighted lever used with water pumps to help carry water up
bobin bobbin? a cylinder or spindle on which yarn, thread, or maybe wire is wound?
bockle Scottish for a Brownie or Piskie
Bodleian Library The main library of the University of Oxford. As an Oxford professor, J R R Tolkien might have read this material
boes food
boesti café restaurant
boghosek poor
bolla a bowl
boobun wick of the "chill" [lamp]
boon campanion best friend
boran boring; drilling
boryer a steel or iron bar for drilling holes by hand
Bougé sheep house
bower an anchor carried at the bow
bowji cowshed
bowjowler a place in the fishing–boat, to keep the foot–line
bownder lane
braced farcer an owl
bracers suspenders
braggaty braggaty: spotted
brake a thicket; a dense group of bushes or trees
brandis a metal tripod for a kettle to rest on
bras big
bre hill
breal mackerel
breedy to make nets, by meshing with needle and pin–roller
bregh arm
brender to knit the brows
Breten Vyghan Brittany
breus opinion
brig a two-masted, square-rigged ship with an additional gaff sail on the mainmast
brithel mackerel
broaze on the point of boiling
broazen briskly; the fire burns briskly
broder brother
brownie a brownie is similar to a hobgoblin, inhabits houses, and aids in tasks around the house; they do not like to be seen and only work at night, usually in exchange for small gifts of food
brummal arish mows. [arish mow: mowing a wet field leaving sheaves of grain in a geometric shape standing in a stubble field of remains.]
brutus According to Geoffrey of Monmouth, Brutus was the founder of Britain. He was a Trojan general fleeing Troy after the Trojan War. After receiving a religious vision, he and Corineus sailed through the Mediterranean and up the Atlantic and founded Britain.
bruyan crumb
bruz small furze; remnants
bucca a bugbear; a bugaboo; a fearsome imaginary creature, especially one evoked to frighten children; a ghost, a spirit, a goblin
Bucca Dhu the dark, black, or malevelant spirit (dhu = black)
Bucca Gwidden a white or benevelant spirit (gwidden = white)
bucca–boo a fool; a bogey; a person or thing that causes fear or alarm
buckler a small, round shield used in hand&ndah;to– combat
buffle–head a simpleton
bugh cow
bul–horn the shell–snail
bullwark an extension of a ship’s sides above the level of the deck
burred chambered, or burried
bussa a salting pot for meat
bussa–head a blockhead
butt a large cask
byghan little
bys finger; world
bysow ring (for finger)
c
cables parted when a ship’s cables to anchorage or buoys breaks
caboolen a stone used by seiners
caboose a portable fishing–boat’s fire–place
cader chair; seat
cairn, carn a mound of natural stones built as a memorial or landmark, usually on a hilltop or skyline
caliburn The Welsh name of Arthur’s sword. In medieval legend, the name was Romanticized to Excalibur
cannel coal also known as candle coal, is a type of terrestrial type oil shale that burns easily with a bright light and leaves little ash
capis very large meshes in a tram–mel–net
cappry goat–like
causey a paved street or path
centaury a traditional bitter medicinal herb
chalk a crow; Cornish: clough
chambour bedroom
changeling a fairy baby switched by the Fairy for a human baby
chapbook Inexpensive paper bound books primarily intended for children and sold on streets by ‘chapmen’ from a shallow box supported by a cloth tie around the chapman’s neck much as cigarettes used to be sold in clubs
chea word used in calling swine to feed
chea–chanter hold your tongue
cheens the loins (old French, echine [backbone]
cherk cinders such as those that might be found at a mine
chet a kitten
chi house
chill a lamp
chirurgeon archaic: a surgeon
chough a crow
church–style an entrance point in a wall around a church; can also refer to the church pulpit
churchyard land adjacent to a church, often used as a graveyard
chymbla chimney
clat a clot or clog of something; dirty; a mess
cleve a cliff
clibby sticky, like molasses
clige to stick fast
cloam earthernware [clay]
clomb earthenware
clunk to swallow
clurichaun an Irish fairy which resembles the leprechaun; some say it is a night "form" of the leprechaun, who goes out to drink after finishing his daily chores
cobesta a part of fishing tackle
coble a traditional open fishing boat
codgy, clidgy adhesive; gummy
coffan or coffen a pit [an open air mine workings]
coits a pile of rocks; group of stones
collebrand edefective and smutty ear of grain, supposed to be blighted by the fine weather lightning, called by the same name. [Smutty: dirty]
colp a short rope for carrying sheaves from a mow–hay to the barn; also a blow.
colpas anything which serves as a prop, or an underset, to a crowbar, or other object when used as a lever
combe a short valley or hollow on a hillside or coastline
conjer to perform magic spell; to make something suddenly appear by magic
conjuror, conjurer a male white witch; a magician that calls up spirits
conventual relating or belonging to a convent
convolvulus a morning glory flower
core a mine work shift
Corineus According to Geoffrey of Monmouth, Corineus was the founder of Cornwall; he was Brutus’s first general. Brutus, according to Geoffrey, was a Trojan who founded Britain.
Cormoran According to Opie, this giant is alternatively named Cormilian, Cormelian, and Corinoran. Opie attributes the latter possibly to Corineus of Geoffrey of Monmouth.
corn British the grain of a cereal grass that is the primary crop of a region (such as wheat in Britain and oats in Scotland and Ireland); also : a plant that produces corn
corncraik a hand rattle used to frighten birds
Cornish diamond a kind of quartz crystal found in Cornwall
Corpus Christi A fair held in Penzance, the Sunday after Whitson ["White Sunday", the forty–ninth day, the seventh Sunday, after Easter Sunday, making this the eighth Sunday after Easter Sunday)
costan straw and bramble baskets
courant running; a game of running romps (French: courir [to run])
couse a flat, alluvial moor
Cousin Jack Cornish men referred to themselves as Cousin Jack within Cornwall and all over the world. Calling the giant Jack’s uncle may be no more than a device to use this phrase.
cowal fish basket, with a band for the head, carried by fish women
cowl fish–bladder
cowleck a glutton
cow’s courant very rough play (French: courir [to run])
cravel mantel–beam
cricket a stool
croft an enclosed field used for tillage or pasture, typically attached to a house and worked by the occupier
crogan, craggan a vessel of crude pottery
croggan limpet–shell
cronack a toad
croom a crumb
croom of a cheeld a very young child
crossened steeled; one end hardened and formed to hold a bit for driving through rock
crossroads a Celtic belief commonly held is that one can meet beings from the Otherworld at boundaries such as at a crossroads, especially one out of town
croust the afternoon’s refreshment, generally of hot fuggans (cakes) and ale (Latin: crusta).
crowd to fiddle
crowse refreshnient, carried to field in hay, corn, and potato harvests
cruds curds
Cruickshank crooked leg
crum crooked
crush shrunk with age
cuffs worsted knit gloves
culver pigeon; dove
curley a curlew [a wading bird]
curmudgeon a bad-tempered or surly person
cursey, also coursey going into a neighbour’s for a spell of friendly chat, or gossip (French: couser [swift])
custice a blow across the hand with a rod
cutter a small single–masted boat, fore–and–aft rigged, with two or more headsails and often a bowsprit
d
da good
da lowr alright; OK
dabban to pick
daffar equipment; gear
dag axe
dale a valley
dalleth begin
dans tooth
daras door
Dash my buttons dash is a euphemism for a common oath; buttons, wigs, etc., are relics from an old way of swearing without using profane language
daskorr return (give back)
davas sheep
deg ten (10)
degea close
deges closed
deghow right(hand)
dehweles return (go back)
den–bal miner
derns a door–frame
dew (m), diw (f) two (2)
dewdhek twelve (12)
dewgens forty (40)
dewlap a fold of loose skin hanging from the neck or throat of an animal or bird, especially in cattle
dewweder glasses (spectacles)
dhe les interesting; useful
dhe–dre homewards
dhe–ves away
dhiworth from
didgen a bit; a small portion
didjan a tiny bit
diek lazy
dien a man
difuna wake up
difunell alarm clock
diggle a miner’s feast
dik a ditch
dillas clothes
Ding Dong Mine An ancient tin mine in Cornwall, one of the oldest in the county, in the parish of Penwith. Popular tradition has it that Joseph of Arimathea may have brough a young Jesus as a boy or young man here, possibly to address the miners.
dinky very small
distemper to throw out of order; derange, unsettle
distowgh immediately
diwedha end
diwes drink
diwettha last
diwiska, omdhiwiska undress
diwotti pub
dons dance
donsya dance
dorn fist
dorn, leuv hand
dornla handle
double a ring
dowdy unattractive, unfashionable, worn, shabby, old–fashioned
down; downland heathland; hills; chalky hills
downs–organ a donkey
dowr water
dowse to throw on the ground
dowsing–rod divining rod, used to discover minerals, water, etc.
dragoon a British cavalryman, mounted soldier
dram a swathe of cut corn [Corn: wheat]
drehedhes reach
dres through
drethen a saud–pot, a sand–area ‘neath the sea
drexel a door threshold
drizzle small rain
drizzling–dour small stream
drog bad
drog pes unhappy
droll A comic or farcical composition, from the noun ‘a funny or waggish fellow.’ Our use of droll as an adjective means ‘intentionally facetious, amusing,’ and as a verb ‘to jest.’; A cornish oral story–teller.
droll-teller In Cornwall, a droll–teller can be considered a modern version of a Welsh bard. Droll–tellers wandered from village to village trading telling of standard stories around a blazing hearth for his meals and lodging for the evening.
drucshar a small, solid wheel
du black
dumble–dory the black–beetle (but this may be a corruption of the dor–beetle)
dummuts twilight
durn a sidepost; one of a pair of posts in a roof truss, each set at an equal distance from the center of the truss
dybri eat
dydh day
dydhlyver diary
dyenn cream
dyghow right (opposite of left)
dy’goel holiday
dyowl devil
dyskador (m) teacher
dyskadores (f) teacher
dyski learn; teach
Dyw God
dyw genes goodbye
e
edhen bird
eglos church
elecampane a rigid herb with a yellow flower, a camphoraceous smell, and a bitter taste
emmet lizardenow:
enouw enough
ensampel example
enys an island
esel member
eskis shoe
estyllenn shelf
etek eighteen (18)
eth eight (8)
eur o’clock; hour
euryor wrist–watch
euth horror
euthek horrible
ev he
eva drink
ewn correct
ewnter uncle
Excalibur The Romanticized name of Arthur’s sword. In Welsh legend, the sword’s name is Caliburn.
exe I believe this means an axel
f
faggot a twig or branch, especially a bunch of them usually tied together
fairy ring a circle of mushrooms, or just a narrow circle where little grows, thought to be magical, dangerous, or beneficial
fairy stirrups horse hair
farrier one who tends horses
fatell? how?
fathom about 6 feet
fatla genes? how are you?
fest extremely
feusik lucky
fistena hurry
flay a flea
flaygerry a frolic [a merrymaking]
flea a fly
flitch a side of cured meat; especially a side of bacon
flogh child
flucan–courses a term in mining; cross–courses
fogou or fougou an underground, dry-stone structure found on Iron Age or Romano-British defended settlement sites in Cornwall
fogous an artificial cave built to house smuggled goods
folenn page
fordh road
fordh–a–dro roundabout
fos wall
four–leaved clover a common belief in Cornwall was that having a four–leaved clover on your person allows one to see the Fairy
freathed out frayed
friday cum–sennet next friday wee
frigate a sailing warship of a size and armament just below that of a warship with a broadside of guns for a line of battle engagement
frow a woman
fuggan, also fuggun a cake; dinner cake; made of flour and raisins eaten by Cornish miners
full–rigged a sailing vessel with three or more masts, all of them square–rigged
fun a small kind of rush
fur wise
furbelow a gathered strip or pleated border of a skirt or petticoat
furze gorse; a spiny shrub native to Europe having fragrant yellow flowers and black pods
fusy good
fylm film
fyn last
g
gad a pointed tool, such as a spike or chisel, used for breaking rock or ore.
gaff sail a spar from a mast to support the head of a four&ndas;sided sail
galloes able
gambol run or jump about playfully
gans with
gaol jail, prison
gard sand
garm shout in anger; scold
garma shout
garow rough
garth enclosure; yard
gasa leave
geek a sly look; a peep
gell brown
gelwel call
gemmed to decorate with gemstones
genesigeth birth
Geoffrey Of Monmouth Geoffrey Of Monmouth is the author of the 12th C The Histories of the Kings of Britain. Shakespeare is supposed to have based MacBeth and King Lear on this work.

His is one the earliest manuscripts, to survive that mentions King Arthur.

ger word
gerva vocabulary
gift a white spt on a fingernail
gimblet a small tool for boring holes, consisting of a shaft with a pointed screw at one end and a handle at the other
ging to fasten a fish hook to line with wire
ginny–quick grandmother’s cap
glan clean
glanhe clean
glaw rain
glawlenn umbrella
glesin lawn
gloaming twilight or dusk (poetic)
GlossaryName GlossaryValue
glow coal
glyb wet
godhvos (fact) know
godra milk
God’s little cow a ladybird [a ladybug beetle in North America]
goedh goose
goel sail
goelya sail
goen moor
goes blood
Gogmagog Geoffrey of Monmouth writes in his The Histories of the Kings of Britain that when Brutus founded Britain that the island was inhabited by a race of giants. One of their leaders, Gogmagog, wrestled with Brutus’s general Corineus near where Plymouth, Devon
going round land dying
golghi, omwolghi wash
golow light
gols, blew hair
good lack! used to express surprise or objection
goog a cavern
goolthise harvest–time at which all comers were welcome to eat, drink, and be merry. This name for an entertainment given on the principal corn–carrying day – generally the last – is preserved from our ancient Cornish. [Corn: wheat] In Scill
gord a nine–feet rod to measure land
gorhel ship
gorow masculine
gorra put
gorthugher evening
gorthyp answer
gortos wait (for)
goslowes listen to
gour husband
gour, den man
govynn question; ask
great noddy a dunce or fool; a simpleton
great Paddy a disparaging term for an Irish person, especially a man (Patrick)
griffin a fabulous animal typically half eagle and half lion
grig a cricket
griglans heath
griglens remains of a heath broom
groaning cake a cake made in some Cornish houses after the birth of a child, of which every caller is expected to partake. The mother often carries a groaning cake when she is going to be "upraised" (churched); this she gives to the first person she meets on her w
groat an English silver coin worth four pennies
growedha lie down
grute finely pulverized soil
guaff to drink heartily
gul do; make
gul glaw rain
Guldaize harvest feast
guldize harvest home
gulph a rich vein
gunny a cavity
gunwale the upper edge of the side of a boat or ship
gurry a four–handled barrow with enclosed sides
gwag empty
gwann weak
gwari play
gwarrah the farthest, the most distant
gwav winter
gwean going
gwedrenn glass
gweean perry–winkle or periwinkle (sea snail)
gweles see
gweli bed
gwelivedhes midwife
gwell yw genev I prefer
gwella best
gweres help
gwertha sell
gwerther salesman
gwerthji shop
gweskel hit
gweth worse
gwettha worst
gwin wine
gwir TRUE
gwiska wear
gwiska, omwiska dress
gwitha keep
gwithyas guardian
gwithyas kres policeman
gwivrenn wire
gwreg wife
gwydhenn tree
gwynn white
gwyns wind
gwynsek windy
gwyrdh, glas (living things) green
gyllys gone
h
hager ugly
hanaf cup
hanaf–oy egg cup
haneth this evening; tonight
hanow name
hansel breakfast
hanter half
hanterdydh midday
hanterkans fifty (50)
hanternos midnight
has seed; semen
hasty pudding a pudding or porridge of grains cooked in milk or water
hawn a haven
hayl a river
hazelen mot hazelen mot: root of the hazel tree
heb without
heb mar without doubt
hedge a Cornish hedge is a built of stone and earth; sometimes hedging plants or trees are planted on the hedge to increase its windbreaking height; a rich flora develops over the lifespan of a Cornish hedge
hedhyw today
heevil three–prong fork, a stable implement
hel hall
hel an dre town hall
hell–broth a brew for working black magic
hemm, hemma (m) this
henn, honna (m) that
heveli seem
heyl estuary
hi her; she
hilla the nightmare
Hind one who looks after the servants and property of his master
hir tall
hir, pell long
hoelan salt
hogan miners’ dinner
hogh pig
homm, homma (f) this
honn, honna (f) that
horner ironmonger
horny–wink a plover [a wading bird]
housen houses
huel a mine
hurling (Cornish) an outdoor game played with a silver ball, its origins possibly be connected to the Irish game of the same name
hwans desire; want
hwath yet
hweg nice
hwerthin laugh
hymeal concerning marriage
hyns path
i
i they
ianken walking quickly
igeri open
igor open
isel low
Ishan dust as comes from winnowing, the result of which process is husks, chaff, etc.
iss yes
iss fy by my faith
ivers eyes; and exclamation of surprise
Iwerdhon Ireland
j
jenney an engine; a spinning jenney is a device for spinning fiber into thread or yarn
joany; joanie a small china figure
jonic fair, straightforward
Joshua bar Miriam I have read someplace that Joshua bar Miriam is the likely Jewish name of the man commonly called Jesus Christ. Jesus is a likely Christian version of the Jewish name Joshua; just as James is of Jacob, and Mary of Miriam.

It is argued that Joshua would have been called Joshua bar Miriam instead of Joshua ben Joseph because of the unmarried state of his mother at conception.

jouder fish overboiled
jowdy to walk in water with boots and stockings on
jsenequick italian–iron
jynn machine
jynn–tenna tractor
jynnskrifa type; typewriter
k
kador–vregh, cadar vrehek armchair
kador, cadar chair
Kalann first of month
kamm crooked; wrong
kana sing
kaner singer
kanker a small crab
kans hundred (100)
kar (m), kares (f) relation
kara like
karr car
karrji garage
kas hate
kavoes find; get (obtain)
kay quay
kay–yer a coarse winnowing machine
kayer a coarse sieve (probably a modern corruption of Cadar a–Chair, e.g., Cader Michel; St. Michael’s Chair on St. Michael’s Mount).
ke! go!
keal–alley a bowling–green
keals (quilles) nine–pins
keddened and cabageed booted with mud; dirty
keg a dog
keggil a piece of wood used by thread–spinners
kegin kitchen
kelli lose
kelorn bucket
keltek Celtic
Kembra Wales
Kembrek Welsh
kemmeres take
kemmyn common
kennen film [caul]
kente–pathen–gy wooden pins belonging to the stone anchor used in punts
kenter nail
kerdh walk
kerdhes walk
kerens parent
kerensa love
Kernewek Cornish Lang.; Cornish
Kernewes Cornishwoman
Kernow Cornishman; Cornwall
keskewsel converse
keskows conversation
ketch a small saiing vessel with two masts, the forward mast the larger
keur choir
keus cheese
keveran a strip of hide or leather which unites the two sticks of a threshal (flail) here called the "hand–staff and slash–staff."
kewer weather
key–beam a horizontal timber used for support in construction
keygans small refuse roots
ki dog
kibbin to steal
kibble an iron bucket used to bring ore up a shaft
kibell bath; tub
kick–shaws (French: quelque chose [some thing])
kicker fishing boats’ small mizen sail
kig meat
kiger butcher
kihbal a mine bucket.
kikti butcher’s shop
killick a heavy stone as an anchor for a small craft
kimbly an offering, generally a piece of bread or cake, still given in some rural districts of Cornwall to the first person met when going to a wedding or christening. It is also sometimes presented to anyone who brings news of a birth.
kinyow dinner
kiskey a rotten stick
kist–vaen stone chest
klappya chatter
klav ill; sick
kledh left (hand)
kledhek left–handed
klokk clock
klywes hear
knack to stop
knocker; knacker an elvish miner [a mine spirit]
koffi coffee
kok fishing boat
kommol clouds
kommolenn cloud
kompes even
korev beer
kornell corner
kosel calm; quiet
kota coat
koth old
koweth (m), kowethes (f) friend
kowethas association
kres middle; peace
kresenn centre
kreslu police force
krlfennyades secretary
krow shed
krows cross
krys shirt
ku–lar to lend
kueney cunie: a short growing moss
kuney, cunie a short&ndashgrowing moss
kuntell gather; collect
kwarter quarter
kweth cloth
kyns before
kynsa first
kynyav autumn
kyrghes fetch
kyttrin bus
l
laft a board using in mining support
lagas eye
laggen to splash in the water
laister yellow iris, or water flag
lamma jump
Land’s End The extreme southwest point of Cornwall. Cornwall, in turn, is at the southwest corner of Britain.
lanking keep near shore, a term used by fishermen
lanthorn an archaic form of lantern
lavar saying; sentence
lavrek trousers
layer a winnowing–sheet
le less; place
leary surface mine workings
leary; old men’s leary a very old mine working, often surface mining in streams
ledan wide
lemmyn now
lenth shelter, cover from the weather
lenwel fill
lester vessel
lestri dishes
lestrier dresser
leth milk
le’ti dairy
leun full
leur floor
lev voice
leverel say
lew lion
liard liar
lies (+ s noun) many
ligge broth; soup
limpet a sea snail
liners threshed wheat sheaves
ling broom a broom made of heaather
liw colour
Lob’s Pound Prison; jail; place of confinement
loes grey
long ear a hare
long tayle a fox
long–cripple a viper [a snake]
loophole slit in wall for light, air, or shooting through
lorgh staff (rod), walking stick
losow–kegin vegetables
losowenn plant
lost tail
lovan rope
lowarth garden
lowen happy
lowr enough
ludras a frame for the (killick). [killick: a heavy stone as an anchor for a small craft]
lugarn lamp
lurcher a dog breed of Ireland and Britain, usually a cross between two breeds such as greyhound, collie, terrier, or deerhound
lyha least
lyther letter
lytherva post office
lyverji bookshop
lyverva library
lywyer drive
m
ma this (with noun)
maga nurture; rear; feed
magores nurse, nanny, rearer
magum 1. a facetious person, one who is full of merry pranks 2. May game
mallow a herbaceous plant with hairy stems, purple or pink flowers, and disk–shaped fruit
mamm mother
mamm–wynn grandmother
mammik mummy
mann zero
Manow Isle of Man
mappa map
mar pleg please
March if
marghas market
martesen maybe; perhaps
maw boy
mawn basket
maylyer envelope
Me the month of May
meanolas a fire place, a square box made of stones and clay, made by fishermen
meat food of any kind
mebyl furniture
medhyk doctor
melin mill
melyn yellow
Men–an–tol a holed stone
menydh mountain
mes but
Mester Mister
Mestres Miss, Mistress
metheglin a traditional mead with added herbs or spices
metya meet
meur great; much
meur ras thanks
midgan a mite; something very small
midge–go–morrah hesitation, doubt, excuse
Midsummer’s Day Today: the 24th of June, around the time of the summer soltice. Before the calendar change effective in 1752: the 5th of July.
miggle–cum–par mixed fuel – a term used in swine feeding; confusion, a mixture
mil thousand (1,000)
minch to play truant – shun school
mires look (at)
mires (orth) watch
mis month
moen, tanow thin
moes table
monger a straw horse–collar
moor cross a Celtic cross used as a signpost
mope archaic: to act in a dazed or stupid manner
moppeneede hide and go seek, a game
mor sea
mordrep aunt
more the root
morthol hammer
morvleydh shark
mos go
Mother Margaret a fly
mould decayed organic matter; earth
mousey–pastie a mouse baked to a dry powder and administered to children in the belief it will cure them of being bad
mowaz a maid
mowes girl
moy more
moyha most
mugwort an aromatic plant used to flavor drinks and used in Asian medicine
mundic iron pyrite [mineral]
muryan an ant
my I
mynnes intend; want; wish
mynysenn minute (time)
myrgh daughter
myttin morning
n
na that (with noun)
na(g) nor
nacken pocket handkerchief
namm defect; flaw; blemish; exception; spot (pimple)
namoy no more
nans valley
naw nine (9)
necromancy black magic communication with the dead, especially to predict the future
nes nearer
nessa nearest; second
nettles a plant usually with stinging hairs on the leaves
ni we
niver number
nos night
notenn note
nown hunger
nowodhow news
nowydh new
nuddick back part of the neck
ny vern it doesn’t matter
nyhewer last evening; last night
o
oast–house a hop kiln; a building designed for drying hops as part of the brewing process
ober exercise; work
oberenn job
oberi work
ogas (dhe) near (to)
old boots a Yorkshire boot cleaner at an inn in having a big nose and chin which he used to hold money between them when asked to do so by guests, keeping the money afterward (c.1692–1762)
omglywes feel
omma here
onan (+ adjective) one
ottena there is/are
ottomma here is/are!
our hour (duration)
ow my
oy egg
oyl oil
p
padger–paw a lizard
padzy–paw (from padzar, four), a small grey lizard
pag–ae please
pair a mining gang
palas dig
pall a coffin; a cloth spread over a coffin, hearse, or tomb
pan when
pap bland, soft, or semi&ndashliquid food suitable for babies
paper paper
paper–nowodhow newspaper
pare a company of men; a group of men
pareusi prepare
park a large enclosed piece of ground attached to a country house
park–kerri car park
parys ready
passel a large group of people or things of indeterminate number; a pack
pastes pie
pasti pasty
peacher a lure, an enticement
pease Middle English: the vegetable pea
peber baker
pederack arish mows. [arish mow: mowing a wet field leaving sheaves of grain in a geometric shape standing in a stubble field of remains.] This shape is conical, with the ear ends of all the sheaves turned inward and upwards. An ill–shaped, bulging pederack
pedn–borbas cod’s hea
pedna–a–mean heads and tails, a game of pins
peep a rat
pel ball
peldroes football
pell distant; far
pellar a white witch, often used to counder ill wishing and evil spells
peller remover of charms, a white witch
pellgowser telephone
pellitory a plant that resembles chamomile with yellow and white flowers, a tinge of purple underneath used medicinally for toothache and free– saliva
pellwolok television
penn–bloedh birthday
penn/pen head
pennseythun weekend
pensorcerer; magician head wizard
perghenn owner
pes da pleased
peswar (m), peder (f) four (4)
peswardhek fourteen (14)
pet a fit of peevishness, sulkiness, or anger
p’eur? when?
Pharisees dialect for fairy
Picrous Day A festival celebrated by Cornish tin miners on the 2nd Thursday before Christmas; the feast of the discovery of tin by a man named Picrous whom miners in the East of Cornwall celebrated as the founder of their industry instead of St Piran
pigal a farm implement
piggal a beat–axe [used in threshing]
pigol a large pick, or mattock
pilchard a small, herring–like fish
piler a farm implement, used to pound, or cut the beards from barley in winnowing [beard: a tuft, growth, or part resembling or suggesting a human beard]
pilles gleanings in the harvest–field
piskey ring a circle of mushrooms, or just a narrow circle where little grows, thought to be magical, dangerous, or beneficial
piskey, piskie, pigsie, pixie, pixy a supernatural, otherworld being in folklore, typically a small and human–like in form, with pointed ears and a pointed hat
pisky’s paws, pisky feet knobs of lead were placed at intervals on the roofs of farm–houses to prevent the piskies from dancing on them and turning milk sour
pitch a method of determining a tunnel’s length in mining
piw? who?
planchen wood floor. [floorboard]
plasenn record
plat a plot of grond
ple where?
plegya fold
plos dirty
plum soft
pluvenn pen; feather
po either; or
podn mine dust; tailings
poes heavy
pol a pool
pols moment
polyn a stick
poop nautical: a stern or aft area of a ship
popti bakery
poran exact(ly); precise(ly)
porth cove; harbour; port
porwels pasture
pow countryside
Pow Frynk France
Pow Sows England
pow, bro country
prag? why?
pras meadow
prederi think
prena pay for; buy
prenn wooden
pris price
prys occasion; time
pub each; every
pubonan everybody
pul–cronack (literally pool–toad) is the name given to a small fish with a head much like that of a toad, which is often found in the pools (pulans) left by the receding tide among the rocks along shore
pulan pool left by the receding tide among the rocks along shore
pullan a shallow pool
punick a small person; a dwarf
pup–prys always
puptra everything
pur, fest very
purvans shreds of cotton used in wick–making for a "chill"
push a stone in his cairn bury
py eur? what time?
py lies? pes? how many?
py liw? what colour?
py par? what sort of?
py? what? (+ noun)
pymthek fifteen (15)
pysk fish
pyskessa fish
pystrier sorcerer; magician [wizard]
pyth? pandra? what? (+ verb)
q
quail withered
quay a concrete, stone, or metal platform lying alongside or projecting into water for loading and unloading ships
quilkan a frog (which retains its English name when in the water)
quilken a young frog
quoits a game where one throws rope,metal, or rubber rings over a set distance, usually to land over or near a spike (called a hob, mott or pin)
r
raf refuse, waste
rag for (in order to)
ragwort a common flowering plant with yellow flowers and leaves that stink; grows from about 18 inches to about 6 feet
ram cat a male cat
rattle–bag a capsule of the sea–campion [a wildflower that grows on cliffs: was also known as dead man’s bells or devil’s hatties—were never picked or brought into the house for fear of tempting death
re too
red–tail drones a red–tail fly, bee, or bumblebee?
redya read
redyans reading
reeve to separate with a fine sieve, small corn, seeds, etc., from the good grain
res must; necessary
resort archaic: a gathering place
rev oar
revenue boat a kind of Coast Guard boat that looked for smugglers
revya row (boat)
rewer freezer
rewl rule
rewler manager
ri give
riggling cleaning out the fire–place with the poker
river the smallest stream of water
rooker a cat
roundel a circular disc used as a symbol, often used in heraldry but also on military aircraft, usually circular, concentric rings of different colors
rouse report [loud noise]
rudh red
rue an herb from the species Ruta believed to be intolerable to witches, making it difficult for a witch to pass
run’d To run its course; depleted
rutya to rub; friction
ryb beside
s
sabs to burn tabs, – grass tufts, raked together into piles for burning, in preparing ground for seed
sagh bag
salow safe
scabby–gullion a stew
scabius old world herbs of the teasel family
scat to knock; break to pieces; also, disused
scat bal a disused mine
scaval–an–gow confused chattering
scaw elder tree
schecojan call; invitation
schooner a sailing vessel with fore–and–aft sails on two or more masts, the foremast being no taller than the rest
schorl a black tourmaline mineral
scraw a turf, green sod (obsolete). [broom plant or heather]
scrof the refuse
scroggan a worthless person
scruff of the nuddick nape of the neck
scud to spill any liquid
seine net
selsigenn sausage
seni ring
seraggen straggling
seraph an angelic being belonging to the highest order of the celestial hierarchy, associated with purity, ardor, and light
serrys angry
Sessions a meeting of a deliberative or judicial body to conduct its business
seth vase; jar
sevel get up; rise
seytek seventeen (17)
seyth seven (7(
seythun week
shag a cormorant [a sea bird]
shart shirt
shaver a young boy
shethen any thing long; a piece of hake used as bait [hake: a large–headed, food fish with long jaws and strong teeth]
shong a broken mesh
shorl a black tourmaline mineral
showl a shovel
shut to blast
sinema cinema
skath boat
skav light (weight); nimble
skavarnack a hare
skaw elder–tree
skaw–dower water–elder tree
skedgewith privet
skerry–werry a slight, active person
skeusenn photograph
skillet small tin saucepan
skillywidden a piskie baby
sko school
skoler schoolchild
skrifa write
skubmaw small parts; bits of wreck
skulk to hide or make oneself inconspicuous in cowardness
skwith tired
slag small driving rain (drizzle)
slaggy weather full of misty rain
slintrim an incline; going down an incline
sloan, or slone a sloe berry; the fruit of the blackthorn
slock light a light of enticement
slotter a sticky wet mess
smut dirty; soiled
sodger a soldier
soedh employment
soedhva office
Soedhva an Post post office
soon a charm, amulet
sos mate
soweth unfortunately
Sowsnek English; English language
spar–stone quartz
spean to wean
spence a larder; pantry, cellar; a place when food is stored archaic
spindle shanks thin legs
Spindleshanks long, thin legs
spiser grocer
spisti grocer’s shop
splann! bryntin! great!
splanna shine
splice to issue a ration of spirits to all hands on a ship; to drink spirits
spriggan a fairy, ugly, small (though they could grow to enormous size), and well–practiced thieves, inhabiting old ruins and barrows
squill a wildflower with pink, blue, and white blossoms
stag’d booted in mud
standings items for sale at a market stand
stevell room
stevell–dhybri dining–room
stevell–omwolghi bathroom
stile steps or a narrow opening built into a boundary separator so one may climb over it or pass through it
stinkibus smuggled spirits spoiled by being in the water too long
stroath wild haste
strop string; a piece of rope
strow scatter by hand
stumjack stomach
sturt start
surveyday assay day?
swap a wasp
sword and belt In celtic mythology, a fairy gift that confers immortality. Morgan gives Arthur an embroidered scabbard for his sword Caliburn (later Excalibur) that protected the wearer from loss of blood When Arthur’s sword and scabbard are stolen and a fake substitute
sygh dry
syghes thirst
synsi hold; seize
sywya follow
t
tabs turf, harrowed fine
taking touching; clapping?
Taliesin celtic bard, poet, and seer thought to have lived about the time of Merlin and Arthur, putting him somewhere at the end of the fifth century AD to the beginning of the sixth century AD
tallow dips candles made by dipping wicks in tallow (clear, whitish animal fat). Candles were often carried home from market tied to the waist belt
tamm bit; piece
tamm ha tamm gradually
tampan a wad of cotton used in blasting
tan fire
tanweyth fireworks
tap a shoe to put a sole on a shoe
tarow bull
tas–gwynn grandfather
tasik dad(dy)
tavern inn
taves tongue
tawesek silent
te tea
teg beautiful; fine
tember timber
tenna pull
terrys broken
tesenn cake
tew fat
teylu family
threshal flail [flail: A threshing tool consisting of a wooden staff with a short heavy stick swinging from it
thrush a fungal infection of the mouth area
thunder axe a Celtic tool, perhaps made of bronze
thurl leary
tide a fit or opportune time
tiek farmer
timmy–noggy a notched square piece of wood, used to support the lower end of the vargord [vargord: see later]
tinkeard a tinker; a person who travels from place to place mending metal utensils
tioges farmer’s wife
to roof
to grass to raise ore to the surface
toemm warm
toemm, poeth hot
tokyn ticket
tokynva ticket office
toll tax
tolyer–predu baking–dish
tor a high, craggy hill
totties pebbles
touch pipe to take a short rest from work to smoke a pipe; a break from work
touser a large apron to come quite round, worn for the sake of keeping the under clothing clean (French: tout serre [conserve all])
toust toiled or rumpled
towlenn programme
townplace a farmyard
towse noise; tumult
towser coarse apron
tra thing
trantums friskiness; wildness
tre a farm; home; town
tredan electricity
tremena pass
tren train
treth beach
treylya turn; translate
tri (m) teyr (f) three (3)
tributer a miner who finds ore and raises it to the surface. [Tribute system: Payment to a miner as a proportion of the value of the ore the miner brings up as opposed to being paid by a fixed wage.]
triga live
trist sad
troes foot
troll a song or something sung
tros noise
trundle to push on wheels; to wheel
trydhek thirteen (13)
tu direction
tubbal double ball–pick. [ball–pick:?]
tubban a tuft of earth
tubble (mutation for Pigol), a large pick, or mattock
tummels large quantity, applied in agriculture to crops of straw and hay
tunsey I believe this is the wagon shaft that connects the wagon to the yoke for the draft animals pulling it
turf a block or piece of peat dug for fuel
turmoil obsolete: hard labor; toil
tus (an dus) people
tut hassock. [hassock: 1. a thick, firmly padded cushion, in particular: a footstool chiefly british a cushion for kneeling on in church 2. a firm clump of grass or matted vegetation in marshy or boggy ground]
tut–work piece–work in mining
Tut–worker a mine worker paid by the job
tutsen The plant sweet–leaf, a kind of St. John’s wort (French: touts saine (heal all))
ty (s), hwi (pl you
tyli pay
u
ugens twenty (20)
ughel high, lofty, loud
unn (+ noun) one (1)
unnek eleven (11)
unnver agreed
usadow custom
v
vargord a spar, used as a foresail; bowline in fishing–boats
vean little; "child vean," little child; kerris vean, little kerris; treveneth vean, &c
vezy without; distant; away
victual food, especially prepared for consumption
visgey a large pick, or mattock
visnan the sand–lance [sand–lance: sand eel; small silvery eellike fish that burrow into sandy beaches.]
vouggha an artificial cave built to house smuggled goods
vug a cavity in rock, lined with mineral crystals
vumfra blow; a heavy slap
w
wad an ignis faluus or ignis fatuus, a light seen over marshes that is believed to lead people astray; a will–o’–the–wisp. A wisp is a twist of straw burning as a torch. A wisp is also called a wad. A will&
wagtail an old-world song bird; they constantly jerk their long tails up and down, hence the name
wain a wagon or cart
wale seam [in mining]
war on
war–tu ha towards
waterglass a bucket with a glass bottom for making observations beneath the surface of water
wear off nautical: to make a sailing ship come about with the wind aft
wes worst
what’s all the pore? why do you look so poorly?
wheelan wheeling? as in a wheeled mine cart
whiddle a tale
whinz mmine–winch
white hind A hind is the female of a red deer. However, to the Celts, any white animal comes from Annwn.
whitenecks I believe this refers to a hawk or some other predator creature
widden white
widdershins against the sun: counter– clockwise: used in country magic to ward off a spell
widdles nonsense; foolishness; romancing
will-o’-the-wisp ignis fatuus ("foolish fire") are atmospheric ghost–like lights seen by travellers at night, especially over swamps, marshes, bogs. Swamp gas can ignite and glow making the flickering light effect. Some say it appears to recede if approach
wimple a cloth headdress covering the head, the neck, and the sides of the face, formerly worn by women and still worn by some nuns
winze a small shaft with windlass; a vertical or inclined shaft driven downward from a drift into an orebody.
winze–brace windlass and tackle
wise woman a witch, often a white witch
wish your cake dough be disappointed
wisht sad
wood–sage a hairy shrub used in folk medicine and planted ornamentally
wort the liquid extracted from the mashing process during the brewing of beer or whisky
wor’tiwedh finally
wosa after
wran a wren
y
yagh healthy; well (fit)
yar hen
year and a day a typical Celtic device; the time required to bind many legalities
yeghes health
yet gate
yeth, taves language
yeyn cold
yn in
yn hwir really; truly
yn-dann under
ynk ink
yn-medh says/said (quote)
yn-mes a out of
ynn, kul narrow
ynwedh too; also
ynys island
yowynk young
yskynna get on (bus); go up; extend
ytho, yndella thus
z
zawn a cavern
zelli a conger eel

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