Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafesj

User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
GUEST,mayomick Cornish Nightingale (43) RE: Cornish Nightingale 20 May 09

I thought that eos would be a bit like the Irish gaelic dheas which could be translated as sweet ,but thanks for that correction guest . I tried looking up the words on a couple of Cornish on-line translation sites - I tried Breton ones as well on the off chance , but there were no entries for either eos or whek .

The song had been sang at one time in Cornish and the English song we all know and love was a translation which was then re-translated into Cornish ,presumably by language revivalists , sometime in the 20th century . My only source for all this is the Kennedy book which quotes one of the lead miners who Marje mentioned , Cap'n John Stocker ,saying that he had heard the song sang by his grandfather who had died at the age of 100 . The English version was first written down in 1857 by Robert Bell who had heard it from these Cornish miners in Germany . The song itself has very definite links to Cornwall and was very well known there ,but wasn't known to any great extent (as far as I am aware) outside of Cornwall until more recently .

A few questions for any Cornish speakers on mudcat:
Did the language revivalists invent the word Eos or did they use ,as guest suggests , a word that meant something like small bird ? Is there a generic word in Cornish for "smallbird" . If not ,what sort of small bird did they use as a substitute for nightingale ? Does eos translate as thrush ,blackbird or some bird that did exist in Cornwall ?
It all seems a bit convoluted to me and the simplest solution would be that , whatever about Berekley Square , the sweet nightingale was reasonably well known in Cornwall at some time , and that it was called an eos whek . Perhaps it died with the language .

Post to this Thread -

Back to the Main Forum Page

By clicking on the User Name, you will requery the forum for that user. You will see everything that he or she has posted with that Mudcat name.

By clicking on the Thread Name, you will be sent to the Forum on that thread as if you selected it from the main Mudcat Forum page.

By clicking on the Subject, you will also go to the thread as if you selected it from the original Forum page, but also go directly to that particular message.

By clicking on the Date (Posted), you will dig out every message posted that day.

Try it all, you will see.