language, similar in construction to Welsh
. The name of the language in Cornish is Kernow
, as is the name of Corwall itself. Webster 1913
is semi-correct in referring to Cornish as a dialect
rather than a language.
First things first - Cornish is dead. The remnants of its decomposing corpse still abound in the West Country as far East as Hampshire and as far north as Gloucestershire. I've heard it spoken more in Wiltshire than anywhere with the obvious exception of Cornwall, but then, I've spent more time in Wiltshire so this may not be indicative. There are no remaining speakers of pure Kernow as a first language. What little we know now comes from dialect as Webster 1913 helpfully suggests and the remnants of a bastardised language that has been so diluted in English that to many of my compatriots the words they use are merely archaic English or slang.
Most speakers of the remaining shards of Cornish have never seen it written. It no longer has any gendered nouns, although the use of a "pointer" to designate an individual as the target of one's speech is still common and has slipped across into West Country English. Grammar, in so much as there is any, is English Grammar, pure and simple.
Within the next fifty years or so, those last bastions of the Cornish language, old men in pubs will all die away, their arcane conversations rendered inaudible by jukeboxes and Sky Sports, and then Cornish can finally rest in peace.