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MINING-HISTORY  1998

MINING-HISTORY 1998

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Subject:

Re: Yan, tan, tethera & co

From:

David Kitching <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

[log in to unmask]

Date:

Wed, 23 Dec 1998 20:25:52 +0000 (GMT)

Content-Type:

TEXT/PLAIN

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

TEXT/PLAIN (47 lines)

On Sat 31 Oct, John Colby wrote:
> Greetings
> 
> In answer to David Summers original question and Richard Smith's
> comprehensive reply regarding the yan, tan, tethera counting systems and
> his belief of where lies the origin, the attached html file is a
> comparison of several language systems. (I've done it as an html because
> its more easily shown as a table).
 
> I'll admit to wanting more proof than the similarity with Welsh that
> Richard drew in his reply. My reaction was "what about the Vikings" who
> were prevelant in the North of England, and whether they had anything to
> do with the yan tan tethera system. And the table attached says to my
> satisfaction that they didn't. Apparently Norse is very much like
> Icelandic.

Re: Celtic numbering systems surviving in Yorkshire.

As the Anglo-Saxon invaders moved north and west across England the last
Celtic kingdom in England to be conquered was Elmet, which originally
covered an area stretching from the north Shropshire border up to the Humber
estuary. Elmet survived until the seventh century when it was conquered by
the king of Northumbria, cutting the Celts of Wales off from the Celts of
the north. 

The name survives in Sherburn in Elmet and Barwick in Elmet which are both
south of York and east of Leeds. The name Elmet is first recorded in the
seventh century according to the Dictionary of English Place Names by A D
Mills, and Bede (the venerable) mentions the forest of Elmet in 731.

Hardly any Celtic words were assimilated into English when the Anglo-Saxons
took over, but Celtic river names survive all over the place. Examples in
the north include Nidd, Calder, Trent, Don and Ouse. A lot of them seem to
mean, basically, "river".

Norse is very similar to Icelandic and has more in common with Anglo-Saxon
than with the Celtic languages although almost all European languages are
related.

Sorry this reply has taken so long but that's how long it still takes me to
work out how to send an email.

--  Shirley Kitching


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