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If you set a story in a Celtic Otherworld which is co-located with London, your otherworldly Celts are not all that likely to speak Irish; a lost eastern dialect of Welsh is more probable.

If you set a story in 1666, and your viewpoint character does not have access to time-travel, he probably would not be familiar with the concepts of telegraphing, or oxygen.

Just saying, like.

Comments

del_c
May. 20th, 2013 02:09 pm (UTC)
I'd be prepared to believe in a Goidelic Q-celtic presence in the south east that goes back to *before* the Brythonic P-celtic speakers, but the problem even with that is that much of the modern perception of "Irish" is itself modern: any genuinely ancient cultural presence in SE England is going to sound neither modern Welsh, nor modern Irish, nor any pre-modern culture we can reasonably recognise based on the sources we have left to us.

The only way out is to suppose that even fairies learn to speak in contemporary accents, thus justifying all the urban fantasy where elves or vampires have whatever today's local dialect is. It's just more plausible than the alternatives unless you're a professor of philology.
la_marquise_de_
May. 20th, 2013 02:21 pm (UTC)
I suspect it might be something closer to Proto-Celtic, as evidenced in early Gaulish inscriptions. Not much good evidence for a serious Q-Celtic presence in that area that early (unless you buy into diffusionism, which I don't. I'm on the John Hines side of that debate.) If it was the south-west, then some Q-Celtic influence is more plausible, just about. But if people must do pan-Celticism (and I really, really, really wish they wouldn't, then Proto-Celtic is the safest choice in fiction).

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