Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Advice for Learners: Cynghorion i Ddysgwyr / Learning Welsh: Dysgu Gymraeg
Here's a feature today which I found out via Alan Jones' handsomely presented "Independence Cymru" (see my link at right) about Janis Cortese's net endeavors. She lives a mere dozen miles away from me, with a slew of pointers and lessons for hesitant beginners in Welsh. As in yours truly. I like, under her comments on the intriguingly titled "Soft Mutation," her comparisons to Spanish.

(As a coincidence, Bo over at another blog I link to, "The Expvlsion of the Blatant Beast," has news of an interview in Aberstywyth for a position on the staff of the Welsh Dictionary/ Geiriadur Prifysgol Cymru, the Welsh OED equivalent. Sensibly, he's a fresh Celticist Ph.D. from Oxford, so the trip to the U. of Wales makes symbolic and etymological sense. He apparently has to speak the language of heaven for the "prawf," or test, logically but undoubtably portentiously. His post on the language-- http://landofspices.blogspot.com/2008/02/welsh.html --has loads of additional suggestions from his own "gradus ad Parnassum." Maith thú, a chara! Adh mór ort! Da iawn, fy ffrind! Pob llwyddiant ti!)

I suppose it's a hairbreadth of a linguistic overlap indeed in any Venn diagram that ties such strands together, but it fits us eclectic lovers of arcana. For Janis Cortese and me, the mystery thickens: why so intrigued by faraway difficult tongues as Southern Californians? (Although she's a near-neighbor by adoption, a point we few remaining natives may parochially make.) Adding to our local stereotype, you can find on her homepages disparate concerns less applicable to me: long hair, left-handedness or "Sinistrality," "Hinouema" or Chinese astrology, firearms, crafts, and Marfa syndrome. Hope she gets back to Cornish one day, even if no translation of a Kernewek/ Curnoack "Harri Potter" complements the versions of volume one in Gaeilge & Cymraeg.

Janis Cortese's Welsh Pages-- http://www.io.com/~cortese/cymraeg/index.html

Image-- http://www.siop-siarad.co.uk The banner ad's titled "Learn to write and speak Welsh - Dysgu siarad ac ysgrifennu Cymraeg". A web site written by Welsh learners for Welsh learners - the terrified kind!" Count me in.

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