<deinx nxtxr> wrote: [snip] > I wouldn't expect the average anglophone to know how to pronounce Pinyin > spellings, even in an anglicized form. It was only about a generation > ago that Beijing was still Peking to us, and many in the media like to > mispronounce the <j> as /Z/. Yep - /bejZiN/ seems to be the most common pronunciation this side of the Pond also ;) -------------------------------------------- Mark J. Reed wrote: [snip] > > Yeah, that'd be the "Anglophones' default foreign language is French" > phenomenon. <j>'s in foreign words are pronounced as [Z] even though > <j> is normally /dZ)/ in English; likewise <ch> as [S] instead of > /tS)/ (*), <i> as [i] instead of [I], etc. Especially likely to > influence stress in the direction of word-final emphasis. Yep - this is certainly so in RightPondia as well. I assume in our case it's because about the only foreign language most kids meet in school is French - so that's how "foreign" must be pronounced :) I recall many years one girl when reading Latin carefully pronouncing _semper_ as [sA~pe] and getting very upset when I told her it was [sEmpEr] as spelled. > -Mark > > (*) Context is everything, though, and <ch> becomes [x] in > recognizably Germanic (Yiddish, Scots) linguistic environs. Well, yes. We don't get much Yiddish here - but in a Welsh of Scots context <ch> will come our as [x] and <j> retains it rightful Old French & modern English [dZ] ;) As for German - that depends how familiar a person might be with the language; the more educated will generally have [x] or [ç] for <ch> and [j] for <j> - but other will mangle, sometimes treating it like Scots or Welsh. As for umlauts, well, they're just decoration, aren't they? I've not infrequently heard München pronounced like "munchin'" ;) -- Ray ================================== http://www.carolandray.plus.com ================================== "Ein Kopf, der auf seine eigene Kosten denkt, wird immer Eingriffe in die Sprache thun." [J.G. Hamann, 1760] "A mind that thinks at its own expense will always interfere with language".