Kig yar gant piz-bihan

The more Breton I learn, the more connections I am finding with Welsh, and to some extent with French, in terms of vocabulary. Today’s lesson, for example, includes these words:

- korn = cornel (corner)
- straed= stryd (street) – e korn ar straed = ar gornel y stryd (on the street corner)
- iliz = eglwys (church)
- marc’had-mat (‘good market’) = rhad (cheap) – looks like a calque translation from the French bonne-marché
- kig = cig (meat)
- kig yar (‘hen meat’) = cyw iâr (chicken)
- piz-bihan = pys (peas) – looks like a calque of petit-pois.
- tartezenn avaloù = pastai afal (apple tart/pie)
- enez = ynys (island)

Yesterday we had deiz = dydd (day), beure = bore (morning), and noz = nos (night). The spelling and pronunciation disguises the related words, but once you get used to it, you can spot them more easily. It took me a while to realise that beure = bore.

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This entry was posted in Breton, English, French, Language.

4 Responses to Kig yar gant piz-bihan

  1. Yenlit says:

    You can see the obvious Celtic relationship when you compare the Breton and Welsh counterparts with Cornish:

    korn(el) (korn – cornel – corner)
    stret (straed – stryd – street)
    eglos (iliz – eglwys – church)
    kig (kig – cig – meat)
    kig yar (kig yar (meat) – cyw iâr – chicken)
    pesen/pys (piz – pys – peas)
    aval (aval – afal – apple)
    enys (enez – ynys – island)
    dydh (deiz – dydd – day)
    nos (noz – nos – night)

  2. There are a few Breton songs in my CD collection, including this and this. I wouldn’t mind having translations if you’re ever in the mood… :-)

    This song contains code switching between, I believe, French, Breton and Irish. I don’t have a translation for that either, but I can get an idea of the meaning by running it through an automatic translator.

  3. Simon says:

    Adrian – it will be a while before my Breton is good enough to translate those songs.

  4. Adrian Morgan says:

    Well, thanks anyway, and hopefully someday I’ll find out what the songs are about.