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Cornish language
Cornish is another good example of how a language assimilated by that of a greater power can be revived and restored.  About fifty years ago it was considered dead by everyone.  Now, while it is still called extinct, it is no longer dead, and language communities become more and more active in promoting the tongue in books, publications, in universities and on the Web.

Land's End in CornwallThe language belonged to the people who lived on the peninsula, Celtic, spoken by the original Britons.  Their portion of what was later thought of as England was independent even in Anglo-Saxon times and though a substantial number of migrants from the peninsula were to resettle across the English channel in Brittany, its population remained Celtic.  In the 11th century Cornwall, the name of their homeland, was conquered by Normans, following which the Cornish people slowly began to languish together with their language, more and more widely replaced by English: the peninsula is not a physical region isolated by mountains such as Scotland and Wales, and inevitably the the tongue was unable to defend itself against the massive tide of Anglo-Norman speech encroachment.  In the 18th century the last remaining speakers of Cornish disappeared*, leaving behind, however, its rich literature dating back to the 15th century and represented mainly by poetry  --  there are yet a lot of verses from the 16th and 17th centuries written in Cornish.
The language is closely related to Breton, less so to Welsh, Gaelic and Manx.  Nowadays linguistic societies divide the tongue into three main versions or dialects called Kemmyn, Unified and Modern.  Of them, Modern is based on the Middle and Old Cornish lexicon and grammar while Kemmyn and Unified are very much the same, spelling their only difference.  But the structure, the unique Celtic morphological structure, remains the same everywhere.  Cornish also has prepositional pronouns, initial mutations and verb-based syntax.

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