The Cornish Language

Cornish is a Celtic language closely related to Breton and Welsh. In 2002 it was recognised as a living language under the European Charter for Regional and Minority languages.

In 2008 the main forms of Cornish – Unified, Common and Late Modern were combined to form the Standard Written Form (SWF) and this has been primarily steered by the Cornish Language Partnership.

The number of people able to speak Cornish fluently is steadily rising. In 2000 it was estimated that 300 people were fluent and by 2008 this number had risen to 2000. Since the introduction in 2008 of the Standard Written Form (SWF) which is recognised for use in education and public life, Cornish is now being taught in many of the County’s schools and therefore the number of speakers will continue to rise.

Hundreds of thousands of people know a few words of Cornish and we have detailed some of the common words on this page so that you can join them!

Monday – de Lun
Tuesday – de Meurth
Wednesday – de Merher
Thursday – de Yow
Friday – de Gwener
Saturday – de Sadorn
Sunday – de Sul
one – onan
two – diw
three – teyr
four – peder
five – pymp
six – whegh
seven – seyth
eight – eth
nine – naw
ten – deg
The Important Words!

Beer – Korev
White wine – Gwin gwynn
Red wine – Gwin rudh
Whisky – Dowr tomm alban
Cider – Sider

Please – Mar pleg
Thanks – Meur ras
Yes – Eus
No – Nag eus

January – mis Genver              July – mis Gortheren
February – mis Whevrel           August – mis Est
March – mis Meurth                 September – mis Gwynngala
April – mis Ebrel                       October – mis Hedra
May – mis Me                             November – mis Du
June – mis Efen                          December – mis Kevardhu
Good Morning – Myttin da
Good Afternoon – Dohajedh da
Good Evening – Gordnewer da
Good night – Nos da
Place Names

Lan – Sacred enclosure like a church
Bos or Bod – Home or dwelling
Perran – St Piran, patron Saint of Tinners
Porth – Cove, bay or port
Wheal – Mine
Pen – Headland
Pol – Pool
Tre – Homestead or town
Towan – Sand dunes
Ros – Heath or common

We have a full range of hand made Cornish jewellery which has been handcrafted and cast using recycled tin and copper (the alloy known as lead free pewter) in the hamlet of Botallack.

Botallack is the heart of the traditional mining area of the far west of Cornwall and the location of the Wheal Owles engine house pictured above. This is the engine house known as Wheal Leisure in the BBC Poldark series.

The unique and original designs of this jewellery are inspired by the beautiful surroundings and culture of Cornwall and the West Country.