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Julie Crawford goes so far as to declare Boudicca "the ultimate English female worthy" in the catalogue tradition, and "the most appropriate and deployable allegorical representation of Queen Elizabeth" (359), yet Jodi Mikalachki contends that early modern authors "rarely invoked" the Brittonic queen in representations of Elizabeth and that Boudicca did not gain popularity in England as a symbol of national resistance and endurance "until well over a century after Elizabeth's death" (117).
At times, clearly drawn geographic lines blur in a manner that underscores the fundamental unity of Brittonic Celts.
It is obviously Celtic and (on the analogy of Welsh telediw 'handsome' or telyn 'harp') almost as obviously Brittonic, or Cumbric, so that a little thought may make it intelligible.
The languages spoken in sub-Roman Britain were British Latin in the British Lowlands, Brittonic in the Uplands, Wales and Cornwall, and Pictish north of the Clyde--Firth of Forth line.
It has been claimed, by scholars both medieval and modern, that St Patrick spoke Brittonic. We know that he could write good Latin, but he called it lingua aliena, "a foreign language".
The relevance of the rivers Don is that as Forster himself later points out (1924: 19-20), the name would have been borrowed from Brittonic as [Donu.sup.*] and remained as such as long as OE -u survived after long syllables (cf.
1370 by the South Wales bard Madog Dwygraig (the first o is probably epenthetic).(3) So there is varied testimony for early Brittonic forms with the sense 'slaver' that resemble English glaver.
The Early Welsh language was known as "Brittonic", "Brythonic" or British!
Its Brittonic cognates (if any) and etymology are unknown.
Wright, English Dialect Dictionary, where the word astel, presumably from the same Brittonic word, is recorded s.v.
(among other things) the people of Britain who spoke Brittonic - a Celtic language used throughout Britain which later developed into Welsh, Cornish, Breton and other languages.
Toller noted that in Gerefa, lorh seems to be an a-stem masculine, but in Epinal-Erfurt it is an i-stem feminine, with i-umlaut of o; Campbell describes i-umlaut of o as occurring 'only in loan-words, and in native words in positions into which it had been analogically introduced'; Pheifer takes loerg(a)e as `presumably a jo-stem variant of lorh, -g "weaver's beam", plural lorgas'.(6) Any link of lorh with Old Norse lurkr `knuttel, prugel' can be discounted on the grounds that this is probably a loan from Old Irish lorg 'keule', as argued by Marstrander against Craigie (who took the Irish as a loan from Norse, which cannot be so).(7) Can we therefore take Old English lorh as a loan from a Brittonic cognate of Old Irish lorg?
Middle Breton bresq (attested in Le Catholicon de Jehan Lagadeuc, printed in 1499), Modern Breton bresc, is also a native form, the sole Brittonic cognate of those in Goedelic.(11)
In his opinion the word British is defined as relating to the "Brittonic" speaking peoples who inhabited all of Britain south of the Firth of Forth before and during the Roman occupation, and also of or relating to any of the languages spoken by these people.
The developmeat of w- to gw- in Welsh was not complete until after the start of the eighth ceatury, and no evidence shows Welsh gw- was perceived in English before that (Old English ia any case lacked an exact equivaleat of gw-).(9) The developmeat of i > e in Old English is easily explained through back mutation.(10) As that took place late in the prehistoric period, and Brittonic final syllables were not lost until the end of the fifth ceatury, it is likely that wered, if from Celtic, is a sixth-ceatury borrowing.
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- Britton, John
- Britton, Nathaniel L.
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