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barbara2
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Post by barbara2 » March 23rd, 2017, 10:41 pm

Timothy Ferguson wrote:My favourite odd pronunciation?

I've been doing a lot of naval history. The word "lieutenant". Now, many of you are going "Ah, I know that one, Americans say LOO-tenant and Brits say LEF-tenent".

In naval history, though, there's a third pronunciation. "let-ENANT"

I use it, much to the disappointment of everyone.

I thought you were in the right of it Timothy and (with the exception of poor Lord "Brougham") I value my life too much to challenge your pronunciations. From the Linguists List:
Sooo..... we have two dialects, what appears to be a Marit]ime pronunciation, "lieutenant" and a nonMaritime form, "leftenant". American English uses the Maritime form. That is also the form closer to the French pronunciation, whence we can presume the English word to have been borrowed -- lieutenant [l'utnã]. So one might suppose the American~Maritime form to be the older and the [f] form to be newer. Also, the Yankee whalers, sailors, shipwrights, and merchants had more contact with mariners early in the colonial period than with soldiers.
Actually, I found the whole post fascinating - the theory is that the difference in the British naval and military pronunciations can be attributed to their having been borrowed from different Romance dialects or languages:

http://linguistlist.org/ask-ling/message-details1.cfm?asklingid=200354833



Best,

Barbara

Peter Why
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Post by Peter Why » March 24th, 2017, 1:04 am

... and going back a little in this discussion, "correct" pronunciation of a particular word can vary from place to place within a country. Oxford and Cambridge Universities both have a Magdalen College. One is pronounced "maudlin", one "MAG-dalen". I can never remember which belongs where, but, in general, how much effort should a reader put into finding out local pronunciations?

Peter
"Anyone who believes that exponential growth can go on forever in a finite world is either a madman or an economist." Kenneth Boulding, 1973

Timothy Ferguson
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Post by Timothy Ferguson » March 25th, 2017, 7:23 am

Thanks for this: from the same post, the guy says the third pronunciation is not dead. I'd heard of it as a sort of Australian linguistic fossil, but didn't know was still active in the British navy. I first became aware of it due to a description in the start of "1788" which was a professional recording of the Watkin Tench diaries. You could tell it was put there by Bolinda Audio precisely because they didn't want people writing in. 8)


"the pronunciation is always [letenənt] or something along that line -- not quite the [lu--] or [[l'u--] of the United States but certainly a lot more like the American pronunciation without the [f] than the Army pronunciation with it."
barbara2 wrote:
I thought you were in the right of it Timothy and (with the exception of poor Lord "Brougham") I value my life too much to challenge your pronunciations. From the Linguists List:
Sooo..... we have two dialects, what appears to be a Marit]ime pronunciation, "lieutenant" and a nonMaritime form, "leftenant". American English uses the Maritime form. That is also the form closer to the French pronunciation, whence we can presume the English word to have been borrowed -- lieutenant [l'utnã]. So one might suppose the American~Maritime form to be the older and the [f] form to be newer. Also, the Yankee whalers, sailors, shipwrights, and merchants had more contact with mariners early in the colonial period than with soldiers.
Actually, I found the whole post fascinating - the theory is that the difference in the British naval and military pronunciations can be attributed to their having been borrowed from different Romance dialects or languages:

http://linguistlist.org/ask-ling/message-details1.cfm?asklingid=200354833



Best,

Barbara
My occasional blog is Games from Folktales

Timothy Ferguson
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Post by Timothy Ferguson » March 25th, 2017, 7:24 am

Peter Why wrote:... and going back a little in this discussion, "correct" pronunciation of a particular word can vary from place to place within a country. Oxford and Cambridge Universities both have a Magdalen College. One is pronounced "maudlin", one "MAG-dalen". I can never remember which belongs where, but, in general, how much effort should a reader put into finding out local pronunciations?

Peter
I do regret that in my recording of Ned Kelly's Letter, I used the wrong pronunciation for Greta, a town where he was raised.
My occasional blog is Games from Folktales

StarFire
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Joined: January 10th, 2017, 7:53 pm
Location: Bay Area, California, USA

Post by StarFire » March 25th, 2017, 4:15 pm

I agree with all that has been said here, and I also want to mention that having the pronunciation guide that is often put in the beginning of Dramatic Works is EXTREMELY helpful.
--Esther


If you have a correction for me give it gently -- I'm young and I learn fast.

"I don't read books to get smart
I read to escape reality."

annise
LibriVox Admin Team
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Post by annise » March 25th, 2017, 6:57 pm

It's not the total answer though. I emphasise different syllables in many words than most USA readers do.

Anne
Our objective is to make all books in the public domain available, for free, in audio format on the internet. - Hugh McGuire.

StarFire
Posts: 164
Joined: January 10th, 2017, 7:53 pm
Location: Bay Area, California, USA

Post by StarFire » March 25th, 2017, 7:15 pm

yeah. I probably do different ones than my family does :P .
I actually really like listening to different accents, as long as they aren't to heavy (<- is that weird?) so I'm not complaining.
--Esther


If you have a correction for me give it gently -- I'm young and I learn fast.

"I don't read books to get smart
I read to escape reality."

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