Sunday, April 6, 2008

Pronunciations

As I have said, I am not a linguist, English major, literature major, lexicographer, etc., so please forgive my lack of advanced knowledge in those areas.

Pronunciations have often befuddled me. For example, I've always had trouble with the pronunciation of "turret," and I found learning French very hard only because of the pronunciatons, while learning Spanish came easy for me. When teaching students about medications, I'd often see the drugs in print before I'd hear about them in the hospital, and sure enough, I'd always pronounce them wrong. And, for the record, I did take HS Latin. So I am hardly the person to discuss pronunications.

But how do you know how to pronounce a word that you've never heard used? I don't know that answer. Does anyone? Consequently, I am probably completely wrong about my pronunciation of "epicaricacy," but I say: ep-i-CARE-ick-uh-see. Yet, there are those on Wordcraft who say: ep-i-care-ICK-a-see. Those are very different. What do you think?

Cat, whose Blog is here: http://caterwauller.blogspot.com/ , reminds me that April is National Poetry Month. I hope to come up with a few more "epicaricacy" verses.

Bob Hale, whose Blog is here: http://thehittingtheroadagainblues.blogspot.com/ , thinks my Blog will fail. I take that as a challenge, and I'll talk more about that later.

4 comments:

Bob Hale said...

Not necessarily fail.
Not as as such.
I don't expect to be feeling epicaricacy.
It's just that I'd have thought that if you restrict yourself to blogging about one word it won't be long before you run out of stuff to say.

I hope I'm wrong.

Kalleh said...

Of course I understand. As you know, I started it as a joke in the first place. However, I will expand on the concept of rare words; words not in the OED that should be; wors that shouldn't be in the OED but are; interesting pronunciations; why sometimes I think linguists are prescriptive when they think they aren't; what is a "linguist" anyway (I wasn't satisfied with Goofy's answer on that); for that matter, what is a mathemetician or nutritionist; and of course I'll have to throw in a few limericks and double dactyls! So, Bob, I think this will work. The limiting factor will be my time because, after all, I do post regularly on Wordcraft!

Cat said...

Well, IMHO, you're doing a bang-up job, so far! Keep up the great blogging!

FWIW, I pronounce it e-pi-CARE-i-cuh-see. :-)

seanahan said...

I always want to pronounce it ep-i-CAR-ic-acy. Car just sounds more right than Care. I have no basis for this, but it just sounds right to me. Eventually I'll learn the correct version and start using that.