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(Mirror.co.uk)   10 most commonly mispronounced words. One of them is "phenomenon." (♫ do doooooo, do do do ♫) "Phenomenon." (♫ do do do do ♫) "Phenomenon." (♫ do dooooooo, do do do, do do do, do do do, do do do, do-do do do do-do do ♫)   (mirror.co.uk) divider line 381
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18019 clicks; posted to Main » on 22 Dec 2012 at 2:35 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-12-22 10:04:16 PM  

ciberido: ciberido:  "I will say again I find it amusing how often Grammar Nazis are wrong about the very things they insist are "stupid" or "ignorant."  It really is such a perfect combination of hypocrisy, ignorance, and smugness."

o'really:Is someone a grammar nazi because you define them as such? Because some might define you as one... Which would make the hypocrisy accusation particularly accurate...

Grammar Nazis are prescriptivist.  I am not prescriptivist.  Therefore, while I may have many faults (including hypocrisy  perhaps), being a Grammaz Nazi is not one of them.

Feel free to call me a Grammar Nazi, however, if it helps you to feel a little bit better about yourself.


I'm with you.

There are those that think we should follow rule X because it's "proper", and those that realize those rules are more of a description of language, a guideline for those learning it, not something to dictate language.

Language, communication in general, is an evolving beast, and stringent protocol impedes progress as often, maybe more so, than it creates clarity and efficiency. That protocol, for it's convoluted nature, sometimes directly misses it's purpose of clarity and efficiency, in addition to limiting the ability to adapt.


Like dictionaries. They define and describe what we the people speak, not dictate what we mean.
 
2012-12-22 10:23:09 PM  

stu1-1: Ask - Axe (seems to be a racial thing, not American)


I actually used to hear "axe" a lot from working-class white southerners.
 
2012-12-22 10:26:35 PM  

Z-clipped: Mad_Radhu: One really common mispronounced word is forte, which is really pronounced like "fort". Of course, if you do pronounce it correctly, people will think you are an idiot.

Linguistics is one of my personal louds.


A common misconception, taught to musical n00bs for simplicity, is that forte means loud. It actually means strong but not always loud. It depends on the context of the piece.
 
2012-12-22 11:18:25 PM  

Tobin_Lam: Z-clipped: Mad_Radhu: One really common mispronounced word is forte, which is really pronounced like "fort". Of course, if you do pronounce it correctly, people will think you are an idiot.

Linguistics is one of my personal louds.

A common misconception, taught to musical n00bs for simplicity, is that forte means loud. It actually means strong but not always loud. It depends on the context of the piece.


Forte actually has a lot more meanings than that, even, outside of the musical context. I was just making a joke.

When I see forte in a piece of vocal music, I read it as, "powerful", because it reminds me to consider my breath support.


ciberido-

I know, man. I was just fooling around. Making fun of the way the folks across the river talk is one of the oldest pastimes in human history. I wasn't implying that anyone here is ignorant or incapable.

Though now that you mention it, ignorance IS one of the main factors that drives morphological and phonetic divergence. And that's fine. It's not an insult to say that settlers in the 1800s were ignorant. Many of them were. It's clear that fashion is also a driving factor, as the intelligentsia of the same era experienced some drastic changes in dialect as well.

It's all good. If everyone talked the same, the world would be poorer, and I wouldn't be able to give my southern cousins shiat over whether they were asking me for a small, sharp piece of metal or a writing implement.
 
2012-12-22 11:32:52 PM  
cool story:
When I saw the lead singer/songwriter's name of Neutral Milk Hotel, I thought it read "Jeff Magnum". I was like "whoa, coolest last name EVER!"
but then I re-read it,
and it was "Mangum" :(
 
2012-12-22 11:33:51 PM  
ciberido
 ciberido:  "I will say again I find it amusing how often Grammar Nazis are wrong about the very things they insist are "stupid" or "ignorant."  It really is such a perfect combination of hypocrisy, ignorance, and smugness."

o'really:Is someone a grammar nazi because you define them as such? Because some might define you as one... Which would make the hypocrisy accusation particularly accurate...

Grammar Nazis are prescriptivist.  I am not prescriptivist.  Therefore, while I may have many faults (including hypocrisy  perhaps), being a Grammaz Nazi is not one of them.

Feel free to call me a Grammar Nazi, however, if it helps you to feel a little bit better about yourself."

I wasn't defining you as one, your link helps. I just always thought the generally accepted definition of "grammar nazi" was people who frequently criticize others' grammar. Which you are arguing about just as much as anyone else. Your definition of "y'all" as "part of the american english language, get over it" seemed particularly condescending.

/I'm certainly no expert but I have been known to correct the grammar of others.
 
2012-12-22 11:34:48 PM  

ciberido: ChildOfBhaal: omeganuepsilon: Hand Banana: I've seen quite a few people saying and writing it as prolly and it drives me crazy.

I say "howdy", "yall", "yonder" "prolly", almost as a joke, because language is fun to play with and it never hurts to be ridiculus on occasion. It's when people only speak that way and are incapable of sounding intelligent, that's when it's gotten ridiculous.

What's wrong with yonder? Perfectly good, correctly pronounced word.

"Y'all" is second-person plural in American English .  I eschew it when dealing with non-Americans in the same way an Australian might avoid the word "ute" in an international setting.  If American English is your first language, then there is no excuse for you complaining about "y'all."  It's part of the language.  Deal with it.


Not trying to argue with you, but don't you find the use of y'all to be more complex than simple second person plural?

My understanding is that it can communicate grouping in a more subtle way. It can be said to one person to refer only to them, or to some group to which they belong, but excludes the speaker. It can refer to a group directly, or one can use the more inclusive "ally'all" to include a heterogeneous group, or multiple groups.

This all comes to me from some educated southern speakers, not from my own experience, so I may have some of the details wrong. But I've definitely experienced y'all referring to a single person in certain contexts. If there's any truth to the finer distinctions, I think it would make y'all one of the more interesting words in the English language.
 
2012-12-22 11:45:44 PM  
How can there be 300 comments and no mention of 'should've' being pronounced 'should of'. It drives me crazy whenever I hear anyone pronounce it that way, and seeing it written out as "should of" makes me all stabby.
 
2012-12-23 12:03:28 AM  

Farnn: How can there be 300 comments and no mention of 'should've' being pronounced 'should of'. It drives me crazy whenever I hear anyone pronounce it that way, and seeing it written out as "should of" makes me all stabby.


I'm guilty of this.
 
2012-12-23 12:06:31 AM  
Ciberido: "Grammar Nazis are prescriptivist.  I am not prescriptivist.  Therefore, while I may have many faults (including hypocrisy  perhaps), being a Grammaz Nazi is not one of them.

Feel free to call me a Grammar Nazi, however, if it helps you to feel a little bit better about yourself."

My asking what your definition of a grammar nazi was honest, but I should apologize for my biatchy passive way of stating it.
 
2012-12-23 12:10:51 AM  

LeGnome: Mock26: Let us not judge those who cannot pronounce words. Let us instead pass judgement on those who cannot spell!

:-D

I'm not sure 1) what you're saying here, and 2) if you're serious. "Phenomenon" is pronounced with the terminal "n" voiced. It sounds like it is spelled. "Phenomena" is the plural of the word "phenomenon," and also sounds like it is spelled, assuming you dig the whole "ph" = "f" thing.


There is only one "e" in judgment. I was just making a spelling joke.
 
2012-12-23 01:05:05 AM  
A bunch of rubes I know pronounce vodak as "vod-ka"
 
2012-12-23 02:42:53 AM  

Farnn: How can there be 300 comments and no mention of 'should've' being pronounced 'should of'. It drives me crazy whenever I hear anyone pronounce it that way, and seeing it written out as "should of" makes me all stabby.


You should of said something earlier.
 
2012-12-23 03:21:30 AM  

maxheck: Beurau... Bureauru... fark it. For whatever reason I have never been able to spell that word


It comes from French. Write the word "bureau"---one of its French meanings is "desk"---and then tack on a "-cracy" to the end: bureaucracy.

Piece of cake.
 
2012-12-23 03:28:07 AM  

FizixJunkee: maxheck: Beurau... Bureauru... fark it. For whatever reason I have never been able to spell that word

It comes from French. Write the word "bureau"---one of its French meanings is "desk"---and then tack on a "-cracy" to the end: bureaucracy.

Piece of cake.


I think he's saying he can't spell bureau.
 
2012-12-23 03:29:32 AM  

Farnn: How can there be 300 comments and no mention of 'should've' being pronounced 'should of'. It drives me crazy whenever I hear anyone pronounce it that way, and seeing it written out as "should of" makes me all stabby.


Or worse, "shoulda have". You can thank Mariah Carey.
 
2012-12-23 05:32:04 AM  

Lorelle: For Americans, the 10 words are:

Mischievous
Jewelry
Library
February
Kindergarten
Ask
Sherbet
Probably
Nuclear
Pronunciation


Roof.
 
2012-12-23 06:33:54 AM  
"Ask" -> "axe" and "kindergarten" -> "kindergarden" are dialectal. I have a Southern Californian accent and mispronounce "kindergarten" the same way I mispronounce "latter" as "ladder". We turn pretty much all intervocalic T's into D's, and trailing T's into glottal stops. I say "ask" "correctly", but other dialects do say "axe". Other dialects do things like "else" -> "elts", "mince" -> "mints"; this seems to be becoming more common.

My dialectal profile:
" "father" and "bother" use the same first vowel, closest to "father" in those who distinguish the two.
* As noted above, trailing T's generally become glottal stops; we pronounce "what" and "cat" by cutting off the vowel rather than a T sound.
* "latter" = "ladder"
* "whale" = "wail"
* "cot" = "caught"
* "him" not equal to "hem".
* "cheater" instead of "cheat".
* "favorite" usually omits the middle vowel.
* "mature" has a "ch" sound, and both vowels are schwas.
* "soda" instead of "pop" or non-specific "coke" ("coke" is used for Coca Cola or Pepsi, or Charlie Sheen's favorite thing in the world)
* "freeway" instead of "beltway", "interstate", "expressway". Big surprise that "freeway" would be the dominant word in Southern California. Our least favorite numbers are 4, 0 and 5.
* "toll road" instead of "tollway" or "turnpike".
* The plural second-person pronoun is often "you all"; this is equivalent to in usage to other dialects' "y'all", except that it's not contracted.
* "What did" -> "wuhd", which I write as "what'd". "What did you do last night?" becomes something like "wuh ju do last night?".

There are also some things I say weirdly that are personal rather than characteristic of my dialect; for example, I pronounce "comparable" as "compare-able" rather than the usual irregular form "comp-erable" that my parents and most others use. I attribute this and similar situations to having seen some words written long before I heard them pronounced.

Wednesday has been "mispronounced" for centuries. Are we supposed to go back to saying "Woden's Day"? (Or to use modern English naming of Norse mythology, "Odin's Day"?)
 
2012-12-23 06:41:18 AM  

Tobin_Lam: A common misconception, taught to musical n00bs for simplicity, is that forte means loud. It actually means strong but not always loud. It depends on the context of the piece.


"forte" means both "strong" and "loud". I know this from Spanish (i.e. "fuerte"), and Google Translate seems to agree regarding Italian.

Why can't musicians call "octaves" a more correct term like "septave" or "dodecave", since there are either 7 or 12 notes (depending on perspective) used by Western music within a frequency-doubling period? You generally select 7 out of 12.
 
2012-12-23 07:20:27 AM  

Myria: Tobin_Lam: A common misconception, taught to musical n00bs for simplicity, is that forte means loud. It actually means strong but not always loud. It depends on the context of the piece.

"forte" means both "strong" and "loud". I know this from Spanish (i.e. "fuerte"), and Google Translate seems to agree regarding Italian.

Why can't musicians call "octaves" a more correct term like "septave" or "dodecave", since there are either 7 or 12 notes (depending on perspective) used by Western music within a frequency-doubling period? You generally select 7 out of 12.


Octave = eighth scale degree. A "septave" or "dodectave" (cromulence pending) would be the seventh and twelfth ( functionally the fifth) scale degrees, respectively.
 
2012-12-23 07:44:10 AM  

Myria: * "cot" = "caught"


Even though I know this merger is supposed to be very, very common in the US, I can't remember ever hearing it in person. I'm not trying to be a smartass here, but do you also pronounce "caulk" and "cock" as homophones? Or is the merger limited to cot/caught? Also, I had a friend from Reno who pronounced "closet" like "claws-it". Is that common where you are?

Myria: Why can't musicians call "octaves" a more correct term like "septave" or "dodecave", since there are either 7 or 12 notes (depending on perspective) used by Western music within a frequency-doubling period? You generally select 7 out of 12.


Music theory is related to mathematics and acoustics, but there is a difference in terminology between them. The word 'interval" implies the nth note in relation to the tonic, not the sum of the number of steps between them. Hence, one whole tone is a major second, and the octave is the 8th tone in a diatonic scale. Diatonic intervals and chromatic intervals are also different from each other, because of how they are derived, so attempting to merge them for the sake of consistency runs afoul of the 3rds/5ths problem.

Basically, the answer is that people learned to play music long before they learned the physics behind it. It's also worth noting that for centuries in Western Europe, this type of counting was common. If an event fell on Sunday, for example, the following Sunday was referred to as the "octave" because it was the "eighth day" by inclusive reckoning.
 
2012-12-23 07:57:33 AM  
Myria:

Actually, come to think of it, the French still say "quinze jours" to mean "two weeks". But to be fair, they say "premier etage" where we say "2nd floor".
 
2012-12-23 08:01:23 AM  

kittycore: thisispete: 20/20: Personal pet peeve this time of year; singers who say "Sanna" for Santa Claus.
Just curious; how many people say the "h" in herb?

In New Zealand we pronounce the "h". They might drop it in some British accents - for a relatively small area they have a lot of different accents, but I can't recall hearing any English or Scottish accent where it's dropped.

It's kind of viewed as an American shibboleth. If I hear someone say 'erbs, I know they're from the US.

My family is from Newfoundland - among all the other words we say funny, the 'h' always gets dropped off the beginning of words - "I'm goin' 'ome to me 'ouse for the 'erbs". My grandfather had a really heavy accent, and used to drive me bonkers by changing my name from 'Diana' to 'Doy-anner'.
Lard Jeezus.


Son of Newf parents here (grew up in NYC I did). Newfoundlandisms are hilarious. "George" is pronounced "Jarge" and it's what you call your wife. Good phrases, too--"Who can know the mind of a squid?" is said after somebody says/does something stupid.
 
2012-12-23 08:20:14 AM  
Whar pronunciation guide, whar???
 
2012-12-23 10:44:16 AM  

Night Night Cream Puff: DeerNuts: Swiss Colony: What gets me all stabby is people who insist on using 'I' when they should use 'me'.

Over-correction. Parents and teachers chide children who misuse "me" so much that people grow up afraid to use it, even in cases where it would be correct.

I can't even think of the last time I heard "myself" used correctly.

Correct: I pleasured myself this morning.

Incorrect: Your mom blew the pool boy and myself this morning.

While I agree that this one is annoying it's not a pronunciation problem. Stick to the issue at hand people!

Chi-pol-tay is the scourge of our existence thanks to the chain restaurant expanding. I saw an episode of some food show on the Food Network one day where they interviewed a lady that kept saying "chi-pol-tay." I wanted to punch the TV so much...


Is that anything like Giada pronouncing mascarpone as mars-capone-eh?
 
2012-12-23 11:06:43 AM  
Crap. Double-posting. Whatever.

Surprised that Ctrl+F doesn't find "foyer". (Foy-ay? Fo-yay? Pretty sure it's not Foy-yer.)

Also, chi-pol-tee is gonna make me choke a biatch one of these days.
 
2012-12-23 11:32:00 AM  
meh, foyer is more of a tomay-to, tomah-to example. even foy-yer is acceptable. it's like correcting someone on how to say croissant by using an overt French accent to it. Cruh-SONT or Qua-SON doenst matter. In Kentucky we have Paris and Versailles. No one says Pay-ree or Vur-sigh. They say Perris and Vur-saylz. but that's Kentucky for you.

but im in agreement on chi-POL-tay. drives me nuts. i managed a cajun restaurant and the rampant mispronunciations of the dishes from regulars who'd been in there 100s of times and knew how to say but refused to drove me batty. Most of them get etouffee correctly though and some of them refused to say the 'L' in creole. they only want Chicken Creo. but that's Kentucky for you.
 
2012-12-23 01:59:00 PM  

Mock26: LeGnome: Mock26: Let us not judge those who cannot pronounce words. Let us instead pass judgement on those who cannot spell!

:-D

I'm not sure 1) what you're saying here, and 2) if you're serious. "Phenomenon" is pronounced with the terminal "n" voiced. It sounds like it is spelled. "Phenomena" is the plural of the word "phenomenon," and also sounds like it is spelled, assuming you dig the whole "ph" = "f" thing.

There is only one "e" in judgment. I was just making a spelling joke.


"Judgement" is an acceptable spelling, so maybe he didn't get the joke. It's just not used so much in America. I remember in 8th grade writing it like that on a spelling test, and trying to argue with the teacher that it shouldn't have been marked as incorrect. She had a dictionary in the classroom that said "judgment" was the preferred form, but did have the other spelling.

It's one of those words with a silent "e" that can disappear when a suffix is added, like in "acknowledgment" - though the rule seems to have become popular only in the last couple centuries. "Acknowledgement" is still acceptable overseas.
 
2012-12-23 03:45:23 PM  
This has been a very interesting thread.  I would like to add that in all the Christmas time commercials I have yet to hear the word JEWELRY pronounced in the manner that I think is correct: joo-well-re (with a long e.)
Perhaps the " professional speakers"  are trying to change the world in their own small way?
 
2012-12-23 10:52:34 PM  

Yes this is dog: "And most people talk about 'Febry' and 'Wensday'."

I'm having a hard time wrapping my mind around Febry.


It's talking about British English where medicine is medsin, my is mee and Tuesdsay is choozday.

My grandma, who is a stuck up, 'rule Britannia', old world biatch, claims that in Britain everyone pronounces parliament as parl-ee-a-ment. Even though I've spent a long time in Australia, I'm also British and have never heard anyone but my grandma pronounce it like that.
 
2012-12-24 09:28:19 AM  
I salute the submitter from Afghanistan .... ace
 
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