why is Illinois pronounced that way?

I lived near Bicester for 4 years when I was stationed at RAF Upper Heyford. Nice place.

Unless you are from the town of Athol, in which case it’s Mathachuthets.

#6 The one in Ill. may be pronounced Kay-ro. but the one in NY is pronounced Care-o.

I’ve always pitied new hires at Boston-area radio and TV stations. They must be given a immense list of common place names with “proper” pronunciations so they don’t mangle them on-air.

Or a link to this website with a test afterwards.

I’ve been listening to WBZ long enough so that I think I’ve got most of them down correctly by now. Peabody and Haverhill are two of my favorites.

Or if you’re George Wallace during one of his presidential campaigns, you say Mass-a-tu-shits.

Missouri is similar.

The French colonized the area in the early 1800s. Then they were displaced by German settlers in the late 1800s. Who were then overwhelmed by 2nd or 3rd generation Americans of generally British descent.

So first the French murdered the Indian’s names for things. Along with the Indians themselves. Then the Germans murdered the French pronunciations and (re)named a bunch of places with German names. Then finally the Scots / Irish / English Americans came in and re-murdered the French-as-said-by-Germans pronunciations while merrily murdering the German pronunciations too.

So MO has a Versailles (vur SALES) and a Nevada (ne-VAY-da) too.

And a Cuba (KOO-buh) and a New Madrid (MAD-rid). And Auxvasse (AWKS-vass).

There’s a boulevard in St. Louis named for a German settler named “Spöde”. The legit anglicized spelling is “Spoede”. The illegit local pronunciation is SPAY-dee.

Not far away is a boulevard named for a Frenchman: De Bolivier. Pronounced “duh-BOL-ih-vr”

:eek: :smack:

Just to say I understand the question. I don’t have an answer, but there should be one.

My quess: English speakers heard French Ill-in-wah, knew it was French, and knew that French “wa” was how French speakers pronounced O-Y / O-I. So They mentally corrected the French they heard, ignorant of the spelling convention with S.

And neither is pronounced Chi Rho. Actually, I use “Care-o” for the corn syrup, and Kay-ro for the town in Illinois, as apparently the locals want it that way.

There are several US “Berlins” that are sometimes pronounced with the first syllable emphasized, like you’re describing what the hot water on the stove is doing in some dialects. Like the previously mentioned “Madrid” becoming MAD-rid, rather ma-DRID. Most notably in referencing the “New Madrid Fault”.

We still say FRAHNK-EN-STEEN

Nee-iii-gggg-hhh !

Actually they’re all pronounced “Mangrove Throatwarbler”

Us iowans dont know how to pronounce much of anything. Just mumble everything together if you dont know how to say it.

Take peoria, ia. Pronounced ‘pure-e’

I believe the Miami in Oklahoma is called “My A Maw”. Certainly not like the one in Southern Florida.

Newark is another one. In Ohio, it’s “Nurk”, in Delaware, it’s “New wark”, and in New Jersey, it’s “New erk”.

I read this here I think, in a fairly recent thread–I thought it was a joke. One last time: this is true?

Never knew that either.

(NYC native.)

:slight_smile: Gotta love meta/in jokes.

Yep, them is how it’s pronounced, and don’t you forget it.*

Unless you’re referring to the part about answering to the French. Those Frogs ain’t owed nuthin’.

*I used to live not far from Ver-SALES Road in Lexington, Kentucky.

There are places in Sacramento named for a former school board member named Goethe that are pronounced GAY-thee. But he was apparently a pretty bad racist, so there is a move underway to rename everything.

Would you guys say it somewhat shows Americans’ lack of regard for other languages?

Something I never understood, is that Indiana has a city called Terre Haute, which the natives call “TEAR-reh HOTE,” which is not a bad approximation of the actual French pronunciation; about as close as you can expect without people adopting fey, fake French accents when saying it, the kind that would require transcripts to have the word in italics. Anyway, when I meet people from outside Indiana, they seem to universally say “TA-ra HUT.” It usually works the other way-- outsiders try to approximate the original-language pronunciation, and natives have a sui generis pronunciation.

No. I suspect if there are places in other countries that are named for foreign places (like, biblical places), they are pretty mangled, and just the way the Greek and Latin translations of the Hebrew scriptures and gospels mangled things, I think it’s just the way it goes.

There’s a French music group called Tri Yann, and I try my best to make out what they are saying, although they have regional accents, and a few songs in Basque. They had one song I could not make out at all, and couldn’t even figure out what language it was in. When I saw the lyrics (many years after hearing it for the first time), I couldn’t believe it. They were singing (trying anyway) in English. I’m sure they were trying their best, and not mocking or disregarding English in any way, it was just the best they could do.

Ha ha! “Ye Jacobites by Name,” was it? They do sing a couple of songs in Breton, which is where I thought you were going. They also do one in Irish with a similarly impenetrable accent.