Fantasy Faction

Fantasy Faction => Fantasy Book & Author Discussion => Topic started by: ScarletBea on October 11, 2015, 11:20:23 AM

Title: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ScarletBea on October 11, 2015, 11:20:23 AM
I started writing this in Julia Knight's thread and then realised this is bigger than that, and something I've been meaning to discuss with you for a while.

In her book, the one thing that sometimes keeps me stumbling are the names. I keep finding it strange to see 'ch' in an english setting (Kacha, Vocho), and I'm not even sure I'm pronuncing them right in my brain (Kasha, Vosho).

My language experience keeps me pronouncing fantasy names in a very different way to what the author thinks (as I've discovered with 'Ryiria' - via the last book, and 'Jorg' - via Mark Lawrence): while it might be annoying for the author or to me when I'm actually talking our loud with others about the books, it sometimes makes me feel that they are my special names ;)

Am I the only one? Have you had the experience of reading books one way, then at the end discovering you have been 'saying' them all wrong differently?
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Mr.J on October 11, 2015, 12:47:30 PM
I sort of presume I'm pronouncing them wrong, but frankly if the way you read it is the easiest/most satisfying pronunciation on your tongue-mind then it doesn't matter what the author's intention was.

I read The Name of the Wind with 'Kvoth' in my head instead of the author's pronunciation 'Kvaothe' (also how else would you spell that out phonetically?).

Sure his probably sounds better, 'Kvoth' sounds a little uncouth, but hey if you make a fantasy character with a million consonants and apostrophes you should expect a multitude of interpretations from readers imo. :)

"It's leviosarrrrrr not leviosaaaaa" etc.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Raptori on October 11, 2015, 12:57:31 PM
I keep finding it strange to see 'ch' in an english setting
Why? (http://liberalforum.net/images/smilies/blink.gif)


On topic: yeah, that happens to me sometimes. Riyria is by far the weirdest one, the author's pronunciation makes no sense whatsoever. Like, at all. Another good one was Hermione. I pronounced it like Krum did until it was spelled out to him...
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Yora on October 11, 2015, 01:04:19 PM
This is something I always think about first: Does any name I create have an ambigous pronounciation? For a book it really doesn't amke much of a difference, but I try to always use spellings that can have only one possible pronounciation in English.
A sad thing is that it's impossible to end a word in English with a short e. Which is super common in Germanic female names, which are all automatically off the table.

I was quite surprised by the videogame Skyrim for correctly pronouncing the letter j in Germanic names and terms like "jarl" and "Jurgen". (Which is in English replaced by y, since the j is already used for the French j. And the name is actually spelled "Jürgen", but even with the umlaut not used in the written form, they also pronounce it correct. Amazing.)

English is one of the best languages in the world. And burdened by possibly the worst use of the Latin alphabet.  :D

I would assume that a "ch" is pronounced "tsh". In German we actually have two different "ch". One that follows a, o, and u and is like the English "kh" (like in western and central Asian languages) and another one that follows e and i, which is a sound that just doesn't have anything even close to it in English.  ;D
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Francis Knight on October 11, 2015, 01:06:06 PM
I say it's your head, pronounce them as you like! I do that all the time (and I remember the shock from some people when they heard Brooks pronounce Shannara -- not how most people do!). Once it's left my hands, it's your book, so go for it.

I general I try to keep them as easy as possible to pronounce, but I knew it might be a problem when someone once asked me how to pronounce "Hild". What's easy for one isn't easy for all. So I try, but I know it won't be easy for everyone, and I just have to accept that.



PS: With this particular series, if you imagine they are all pronounced as though you're speaking Italian, you won't be far wrong :) In retrospect, perhaps Vocho should have been Votcho but you're dead on with Kasha. But like I say, say it how you feel comfortable

Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ScarletBea on October 11, 2015, 03:54:32 PM
I keep finding it strange to see 'ch' in an english setting
Why? (http://liberalforum.net/images/smilies/blink.gif)
I think there are only words with 'tch' (or that should be pronounced tch), not the plain 'ch' portuguese sound. For that, it uses 'sh'.
Except in the beginning of words, of course, but I'm talking middle of the word.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Raptori on October 11, 2015, 04:27:02 PM
I keep finding it strange to see 'ch' in an english setting
Why? (http://liberalforum.net/images/smilies/blink.gif)
I think there are only words with 'tch' (or that should be pronounced tch), not the plain 'ch' portuguese sound. For that, it uses 'sh'.
Except in the beginning of words, of course, but I'm talking middle of the word.
Ahh right, can't really think of much but I'm pretty sure it's used for several different sounds. For example 'hierarchy' and 'architecture' have more of a 'k' sound than a 'tch'...  :P
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: YordanZh on October 11, 2015, 04:43:26 PM
Pff, it happens to me all the time, especially as a non-English speaker. I've learned not to care about it tho, since it happens so often. It isn't rare for me to see a name that would be particularly hard for me to pronounce so I just immediately decide in my head "Ok, I don't care, for me that guy's actually called "Thisthatson" or w/e."  ;D

Heck, it happened to me as a writer too - I've always pronounced the name of one of my characters in a particular way, but when I started talking with readers, getting feedback and discussing the book, I found that they all pronounce his name in a very different way. After the third or forth such occurrence I thought about it for a little and realized that my readers are actually right - it makes more sense for the name to be pronounced the way they do it. :P
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Hedin on October 11, 2015, 10:05:30 PM
I say it's your head, pronounce them as you like! I do that all the time (and I remember the shock from some people when they heard Brooks pronounce Shannara -- not how most people do!). Once it's left my hands, it's your book, so go for it.

That's exactly my approach to it, I'll pronounce names as they see fit to me while I am reading.   If I'm talking to someone about the book and they pronounce a name differently I'll notice and just keep doing it my way.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Jonny_Anonymous on October 11, 2015, 10:35:33 PM
Malazan does this to me all the time, in fact I'm sure I pronounce most of the names wrong. Like how the hell am I meant to pronounce Kruppe or Tiste Andii?   
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Lady Ty on October 11, 2015, 11:01:02 PM
I would assume that a "ch" is pronounced "tsh". In German we actually have two different "ch". One that follows a, o, and u and is like the English "kh" (like in western and central Asian languages) and another one that follows e and i, which is a sound that just doesn't have anything even close to it in English.  ;D
That sound may be like the  "ch" in the Scottish word "loch" where the ch is almost swallowed, but usually mispronounced elsewhere as "lock."

 
I say it's your head, pronounce them as you like! I do that all the time (and I remember the shock from some people when they heard Brooks pronounce Shannara -- not how most people do!). Once it's left my hands, it's your book, so go for it.


Francis, that is good to know and helpful to us in way you feel.  I would have thought writers felt otherwise, because their characters are so personal to them it would include the names. Most name pronunciations I get from audible and have assumed the writer was consulted there, but sometimes have a shock when I have read the books and was so wrong in my head.  Riyria was one so very different when I heard it first. If names are too hard to guess, such as ones with several xx's,  I just use my own made up name.

Is Jorg pronounced Yorg? Because Jalan is hard J Jalan.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: night_wrtr on October 11, 2015, 11:09:18 PM
I am sure that most of the time I am pronouncing names incorrectly. I was embarased when I finally heard someone pronounce Nynaeve from Wheel of Time. I went 5 books pronouncing it something like "Nin-ah-vah."
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Arry on October 12, 2015, 12:15:35 AM
Jean from Gentleman Bastards is one that I found out I was mispronouncing, it took me a while, but I did eventually get it straight. For names where I really just don't now, like Riyria, I don't know that I ever even come up with an exact or persistent pronunciation (which is always easier since I never actually talk books with people IRL and have no need to actually know how to say them)
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Hedin on October 12, 2015, 12:57:17 AM
Malazan does this to me all the time, in fact I'm sure I pronounce most of the names wrong. Like how the hell am I meant to pronounce Kruppe or Tiste Andii?

I've always gone with Croup and Tea-stay Andy.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: JMack on October 12, 2015, 01:00:56 AM
Malazan does this to me all the time, in fact I'm sure I pronounce most of the names wrong. Like how the hell am I meant to pronounce Kruppe or Tiste Andii?

I've always gone with Croup and Tea-stay Andy.

No, no. You're just wrong.  ;)

Crup (is in "up") and Tist Andy.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Hedin on October 12, 2015, 01:04:27 AM
Malazan does this to me all the time, in fact I'm sure I pronounce most of the names wrong. Like how the hell am I meant to pronounce Kruppe or Tiste Andii?

I've always gone with Croup and Tea-stay Andy.

No, no. You're just wrong.  ;)

Crup (is in "up") and Tist Andy.

Tist? That E ain't silent buddy.   Glad we agree on Andy at least.   
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: JMack on October 12, 2015, 01:07:38 AM
Malazan does this to me all the time, in fact I'm sure I pronounce most of the names wrong. Like how the hell am I meant to pronounce Kruppe or Tiste Andii?

I've always gone with Croup and Tea-stay Andy.

No, no. You're just wrong.  ;)

Crup (is in "up") and Tist Andy.

Tist? That E ain't silent buddy.   Glad we agree on Andy at least.

Then Tist-e (short e), if you must hear it.  ;D
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ArhiX on October 12, 2015, 01:53:54 AM
Malazan does this to me all the time, in fact I'm sure I pronounce most of the names wrong. Like how the hell am I meant to pronounce Kruppe or Tiste Andii?

Try with K'Chain Che'Malle. Or any other name with (') in it. Keszein Szeemalle??? Erikson pls.
I'm actually pronouncing it with 'chain'. But still there are some other names...
I think it's a thing in every (more or less) epic fantasy.

If I can digress a bit. I think I mentioned it somewhere else, but in my language "Capustan" (still from Malazan) means something like 'Cabbage-town'. It's funny when you read something like "in a battle for Cabbagetown..." and it's actully meant to be tragic but you can't stop laughing. Who were they fighting with? Magically conjured demon-cabbages?

(http://photo.mindcube.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/Advertising_photography_man_cabbage.jpg)
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ScarletBea on October 12, 2015, 08:24:43 AM
Is Jorg pronounced Yorg? Because Jalan is hard J Jalan.
That's how I've always said it, just like the German name, but when I asked Mark he said it's supposed to be just plain 'George', and the only reason he didn't go with 'Jorge' with the 'e' at the end was to avoid the spanish way of saying that, because that was definitely not what he wanted.
He didn't mind my way much, though, said that many people said it like that too...

Jean from Gentleman Bastards is one that I found out I was mispronouncing, it took me a while, but I did eventually get it straight.
I say it like the French name - is it that, or like 'jean' (the trousers)?
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: CameronJohnston on October 12, 2015, 09:05:29 AM
I honestly don't care how things are supposed to be pronounced in a book, I'll interpret them in the best way for myself anyway. What does it really matter, beyond stirring lively debate on forums :p
I'm still clinging to the dragon 'Smaug' being pronounced 'Smog'.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Francis Knight on October 12, 2015, 09:41:44 AM
Francis, that is good to know and helpful to us in way you feel.  I would have thought writers felt otherwise, because their characters are so personal to them it would include the names.

Well I can only speak for myself! I know JRRT got all het up about people not pronouncing things right. And yet even though I know it should be Sour-on, I still pronounce it Sore-on. Having a dyslexic husband who sees words differently gives you a perspective (and makes discussing books an education :D)
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Yora on October 12, 2015, 09:46:02 AM
That sound may be like the  "ch" in the Scottish word "loch" where the ch is almost swallowed, but usually mispronounced elsewhere as "lock."

No, it's much more weird (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FnFQdLOjiZ4). It's a sound that I've never heard in any other language. (Though wouldn't be surprised if it's in Dutch or Swedish.) And there's actually also a third way to pronounce it.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: madfox11 on October 12, 2015, 10:25:21 AM
This is something I always think about first: Does any name I create have an ambigous pronounciation? For a book it really doesn't amke much of a difference, but I try to always use spellings that can have only one possible pronounciation in English.

Huh? Considering English is one of the worse languages I know in regards to spelling and pronunciation, I find it a bit hard to see how you would do this unless you stick to modern names. In fact, even in case of modern names there are multiple ways to pronounce it. Mind you, names are always horrible because they often come from different languages or stick to old spelling (especially surnames).

As for the 'ch', in Dutch it is always pronounced the same way, like the ch in loch although a bit harsher. It is one of those spelling rules in Dutch that make it hard on people trying to learn the language since usually we use the 'g' for the same sound ;)
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Francis Knight on October 12, 2015, 10:41:49 AM
Serendipity -- the ten most mispronounced  (http://i100.independent.co.uk/article/the-10-most-commonly-mispronounced-names-in-the-world-of-literature--WylrPl0Itwl?utm_source=indy&utm_medium=top5&utm_campaign=i100)names in literature
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Henry Dale on October 12, 2015, 11:03:02 AM
This is something I always think about first: Does any name I create have an ambigous pronounciation? For a book it really doesn't amke much of a difference, but I try to always use spellings that can have only one possible pronounciation in English.

Huh? Considering English is one of the worse languages I know in regards to spelling and pronunciation, I find it a bit hard to see how you would do this unless you stick to modern names. In fact, even in case of modern names there are multiple ways to pronounce it. Mind you, names are always horrible because they often come from different languages or stick to old spelling (especially surnames).

As for the 'ch', in Dutch it is always pronounced the same way, like the ch in loch although a bit harsher. It is one of those spelling rules in Dutch that make it hard on people trying to learn the language since usually we use the 'g' for the same sound ;)

Ch isn't always the same in Dutch.
Consider the difference of ch in 'Chinees' or 'champagne' and the ch in 'goochelaar' or 'achting'
The first two give a 'sh' sound. The other two a soft g.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Mr.J on October 12, 2015, 11:04:17 AM
Jean from Gentleman Bastards is one that I found out I was mispronouncing, it took me a while, but I did eventually get it straight.
I say it like the French name - is it that, or like 'jean' (the trousers)?
Scott Lynch says it is 'Jean' as in the French, whereas I've always pronounced it 'gene'. I can't shake it now, even though that way it sounds like Locke goes around with an eleven year old fat kid with an electronic keyboard. :P
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: madfox11 on October 12, 2015, 11:29:12 AM
Ch isn't always the same in Dutch.
Consider the difference of ch in 'Chinees' or 'champagne' and the ch in 'goochelaar' or 'achting'
The first two give a 'sh' sound. The other two a soft g.

Had forgotten the Ch from 'champagne' (although I wonder how much those words have to do with the fact that they are place names from non-Dutch areas), as for the soft g that depends on where you live in the Netherlands ;)
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Henry Dale on October 12, 2015, 11:42:45 AM
Ch isn't always the same in Dutch.
Consider the difference of ch in 'Chinees' or 'champagne' and the ch in 'goochelaar' or 'achting'
The first two give a 'sh' sound. The other two a soft g.

Had forgotten the Ch from 'champagne' (although I wonder how much those words have to do with the fact that they are place names from non-Dutch areas), as for the soft g that depends on where you live in the Netherlands ;)

Chagrijn starts with a ch and isn't a place name, for example.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Lady Ty on October 12, 2015, 01:00:55 PM
That sound may be like the  "ch" in the Scottish word "loch" where the ch is almost swallowed, but usually mispronounced elsewhere as "lock."

No, it's much more weird (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FnFQdLOjiZ4). It's a sound that I've never heard in any other language. (Though wouldn't be surprised if it's in Dutch or Swedish.) And there's actually also a third way to pronounce it.
It was indeed. Sitting listening and trying to do the laugh hech hech bit and making very strange sounds. Thanks Yora.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Jonny_Anonymous on October 12, 2015, 02:27:14 PM
Malazan does this to me all the time, in fact I'm sure I pronounce most of the names wrong. Like how the hell am I meant to pronounce Kruppe or Tiste Andii?

I've always gone with Croup and Tea-stay Andy.

I've been saying Krup, Tsst Anne-Dey and Ka-Chain Che-Mail.

None of these are even remotely accurate I know.



No, no. You're just wrong.  ;)

Crup (is in "up") and Tist Andy.

Tist? That E ain't silent buddy.   Glad we agree on Andy at least.

Then Tist-e (short e), if you must hear it.  ;D
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Hedin on October 12, 2015, 03:06:55 PM
Malazan does this to me all the time, in fact I'm sure I pronounce most of the names wrong. Like how the hell am I meant to pronounce Kruppe or Tiste Andii?

Try with K'Chain Che'Malle. Or any other name with (') in it. Keszein Szeemalle??? Erikson pls.
I'm actually pronouncing it with 'chain'. But still there are some other names...
I think it's a thing in every (more or less) epic fantasy.

K'Chain Che'Malle = Dinosaurs
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Jonny_Anonymous on October 12, 2015, 11:51:55 PM
Malazan does this to me all the time, in fact I'm sure I pronounce most of the names wrong. Like how the hell am I meant to pronounce Kruppe or Tiste Andii?

I've always gone with Croup and Tea-stay Andy.

I've been saying Krup, Tsst Anne-Dey and Ka-Chain Che-Mail.

None of these are even remotely accurate I know.



No, no. You're just wrong.  ;)

Crup (is in "up") and Tist Andy.

Tist? That E ain't silent buddy.   Glad we agree on Andy at least.

Then Tist-e (short e), if you must hear it.  ;D

Hey! What happened to my comment??
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Annomander Matt on October 13, 2015, 01:29:56 AM
My sister and I crack up every time we talk about Wheel of Time, since she is about halfway thru the series now. Names we pronounce differently just off top:

Egwene
Nynaeve
Avienda
Logain
Elyas
Cadsuane
Ogier
Brigitte
Lews Therin

I've never meet anyone in person that's read Malazan, but I'm sure that would be hilarious as well lol
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Annomander Matt on October 13, 2015, 02:12:30 AM
Oh and while we are on the topic, the worst word in the English language:
Colonel
I refuse to pronounce it properly in my head, and refuse to spell it any other way than kernel. Fuck that word.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ScarletBea on October 13, 2015, 02:44:45 AM
Oh and while we are on the topic, the worst word in the English language:
Colonel
I refuse to pronounce it properly in my head, and refuse to spell it any other way than kernel. Fuck that word.
Oh I so agree!
I spent many years hearing it on TV and movies, so the first time I saw it written down i thought it was a mistake... until I saw it more and more often hehe
In Portuguese we have the 'right' spelling, I think ;) 'coronel'
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Yora on October 13, 2015, 10:55:48 AM
What about "sword"? Is the w pronounced or not?
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: wimbly on October 13, 2015, 11:15:31 AM
As a reader I kinda like to have it my way. Even with GOT, I was disappointed to hear some of the names on TV sounded different than  in my head.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ClintACK on October 13, 2015, 12:02:09 PM
Huh.  I had no idea the 't' was silent in Voldemort.  Silliness.

Winston Churchill is supposed to have said, "It is the inalienable right of every Englishman to pronounce foreign words exactly as he pleases."

I think that's doubly true when it's a made-up foreign word in a made-up foreign land.

If you really want us to pronounce the word right you need to make it clear -- like having someone mispronounce it and get corrected.  (Almost as cliche as having your protagonist look in the mirror and describe himself, but it does work.)

It usually doesn't matter.

It's neat that "Egwene al'Vere" can be pronounced almost exactly like Guenivere, but it's hardly essential to the story.

Kvothe sounding like Quoth (as in "Quoth the Raven, 'Nevermore'.") might be important.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Yora on October 13, 2015, 12:30:32 PM
Gaelic spelling is funny. Unlike English spelling, I've been told that it's very consistent and has very little ambiguity as pronounciation is concerned. They just use the Latin alphabet in very unusual ways. And somehow Medb is pronounced Maive.
Winston Churchill is supposed to have said, "It is the inalienable right of every Englishman to pronounce foreign words exactly as he pleases."
Japanese is even more extreme. Because everything is transcribed to a different writing system that has relatively few sounds to begin with and has a single character for sylables, the original spelling is completely lost and impossible to reconstruct, so you're unable to determine the original pronounciation at all.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ArhiX on October 13, 2015, 12:35:49 PM
What about "sword"? Is the w pronounced or not?

And what about 'knight'? Does it has to sound 'night'? "The Dark Knigt" and "Dark night" are nigh.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Yora on October 13, 2015, 12:37:51 PM
And why is it "neumatic" but not "sycology"?
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Raptori on October 13, 2015, 12:42:00 PM
And why is it "neumatic" but not "sycology"?
The p in psychology is silent.  :-\
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ArhiX on October 13, 2015, 12:45:20 PM
I have managed to find this little 'pearl':(http://i.imgur.com/U5huh.png)
This is why trying to find a good way to pronounce fantasy name is destinated to fail from the very beginning...
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Arya Stark on October 13, 2015, 01:23:40 PM
The worst are the books where every character has to have an apostrophe in their name. it just looks silly to me
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ArcaneArtsVelho on October 13, 2015, 01:48:23 PM
What about "sword"? Is the w pronounced or not?

And what about 'knight'? Does it has to sound 'night'? "The Dark Knigt" and "Dark night" are nigh.
K-nig-ht. Plural: K-nig-hts. (source: Urban Dictionary / Monty Python (http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=knight&defid=1801243))
 ;) :P ;D
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ScarletBea on October 13, 2015, 04:11:29 PM
What about "sword"? Is the w pronounced or not?
Not.
'sord' basically

And why is it "neumatic" but not "sycology"?
It is - don't say the p in either word
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ClintACK on October 13, 2015, 08:11:46 PM
The worst are the books where every character has to have an apostrophe in their name. it just looks silly to me

Except for the Pern books.  There was an actual mechanic to that, where dragon riders were set apart by losing the first vowel in their name.

Otherwise, yeah.  Trying too hard to make the names exotic.


And why is it "neumatic" but not "sycology"?
It is - don't say the p in either word

Technically, it's "sychology".   ::)
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Jonny_Anonymous on October 14, 2015, 11:03:01 AM
Oh god how did I forget the Elric Saga? One of my all time favorite series\worlds and it throws out beauties like:

Melniboné

R'lin K'ren A'a

Yyrkoon

Imrryr

D'a'rputna

 :'(
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ClintACK on October 14, 2015, 12:13:38 PM
Oh god how did I forget the Elric Saga? One of my all time favorite series\worlds and it throws out beauties like:

Melniboné
MELL-ni-bone

Quote
R'lin K'ren A'a
ARE-lin KREN Ah

Quote
Yyrkoon
Ear-COON

Quote
Imrryr
IHM-rear

Quote
D'a'rputna
Dar-POOT-na

Quote
:'(

Did I get any "right"?
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Mr.J on October 14, 2015, 12:19:47 PM
Blimey, what are those names.

Would have thought it would be something else rather than just 'bone' because there's an accent over the e at the end.

If it was up to me I'd write a fantasy where everyone's called Bob.

Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Jonny_Anonymous on October 14, 2015, 01:25:33 PM
Yeah that's all pretty much how I say them except I know the official pronunciation of Melniboné is Mel-nib-on-ay (as in cafe)
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: madfox11 on October 15, 2015, 09:20:19 AM
Maybe all those fantasy names with ' in them have a clicking sound in their language as some of the languages in southern Africa have? ;)
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Jonny_Anonymous on October 16, 2015, 09:48:23 AM
Oh god, I think I would end up with cramp trying to pronounce things in Elric of Melnibone if that was the case.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ScarletBea on October 16, 2015, 10:27:19 AM
Yeah that's all pretty much how I say them except I know the official pronunciation of Melniboné is Mel-nib-on-ay (as in cafe)

But café isn't pronounced ca-fay ??? it's cafeh, an open E (eh!)
So I'd say Bo-neh
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Raptori on October 16, 2015, 10:31:22 AM
Yeah that's all pretty much how I say them except I know the official pronunciation of Melniboné is Mel-nib-on-ay (as in cafe)

But café isn't pronounced ca-fay ??? it's cafeh, an open E (eh!)
So I'd say Bo-neh
Where in the world do people pronounce é as eh?  :o
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ScarletBea on October 16, 2015, 10:41:16 AM
Latin countries?

Where do you think the accent comes from? ;)
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Raptori on October 16, 2015, 10:45:36 AM
Latin countries?

Where do you think the accent comes from? ;)
France, and I've seen it used in eastern european languages too. Café as "ca-fay" being the perfect example! I've never learned any spanish/portuguese at all.  :P
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ScarletBea on October 16, 2015, 10:46:58 AM
I think you were the one who showed me this site:
http://forvo.com/word/caf%C3%A9/#pt (http://forvo.com/word/caf%C3%A9/#pt)
 :)
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Raptori on October 16, 2015, 10:49:59 AM
I think you were the one who showed me this site:
http://forvo.com/word/caf%C3%A9/#pt (http://forvo.com/word/caf%C3%A9/#pt)
 :)
Weird!  :o
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Francis Knight on October 16, 2015, 12:09:02 PM
Cafe?*


Round 'ere we call it "caff"

Cos we're common :)

*I can't get the accent to work on this keyboard...
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ScarletBea on October 16, 2015, 02:18:29 PM
Trick: alt gr+e = é

Oh I don't call them cafés here either hehe, just in Portugal ;) Unless I'm talking about Café Nero.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ArcaneArtsVelho on October 16, 2015, 02:34:22 PM
I think you were the one who showed me this site:
http://forvo.com/word/caf%C3%A9/#pt (http://forvo.com/word/caf%C3%A9/#pt)
 :)
I showed you that site.  >:(   (At least I think I did...  :-\ )

 ;D

Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: m3mnoch on October 16, 2015, 02:38:00 PM
over here in the states, we say "coffee shop".
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ScarletBea on October 16, 2015, 02:44:25 PM
I think you were the one who showed me this site:
http://forvo.com/word/caf%C3%A9/#pt (http://forvo.com/word/caf%C3%A9/#pt)
 :)
I showed you that site.  >:(   (At least I think I did...  :-\ )

 ;D
:-[
Sorry - I knew it was someone from here, but couldn't remember exactly who!
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Raptori on October 16, 2015, 02:55:38 PM
I think you were the one who showed me this site:
http://forvo.com/word/caf%C3%A9/#pt (http://forvo.com/word/caf%C3%A9/#pt)
 :)
I showed you that site.  >:(   (At least I think I did...  :-\ )

 ;D
Also definitely could've been me, I've used it before. I'm gonna go search the forum for forvo.com to see...  8)


... annoyingly, it doesn't search within url tags, and I guess whoever did share it before used url tags. I guess we'll never know!  :P
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ArcaneArtsVelho on October 16, 2015, 03:01:50 PM
I think you were the one who showed me this site:
http://forvo.com/word/caf%C3%A9/#pt (http://forvo.com/word/caf%C3%A9/#pt)
 :)
I showed you that site.  >:(   (At least I think I did...  :-\ )

 ;D
:-[
Sorry - I knew it was someone from here, but couldn't remember exactly who!
It's OK. Especially if it was Raptori who showed you that site.  ;D

Also definitely could've been me, I've used it before. I'm gonna go search the forum for forvo.com to see...  8)


... annoyingly, it doesn't search within url tags, and I guess whoever did share it before used url tags. I guess we'll never know!  :P
I'll check my posts.  ;)
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ScarletBea on October 16, 2015, 03:07:31 PM
AAV, it was you :D

Yeah, it's just like you said, with a little pause between L and H.  :)
Here (http://www.forvo.com/word/velho/) are samples of how you pronounce it in Portuguese and in Finnish.

(I just searched the site for 'forvo' hehe)
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ArcaneArtsVelho on October 16, 2015, 03:25:26 PM
AAV, it was you :D

Yeah, it's just like you said, with a little pause between L and H.  :)
Here (http://www.forvo.com/word/velho/) are samples of how you pronounce it in Portuguese and in Finnish.

(I just searched the site for 'forvo' hehe)
Yes, I won!  ;D
Just found it myself (by looking through my early posts).


But to stop derailing this thread (kind of)...
If I ever publish a book, I don't think I'll mind how the readers pronounce the names of the places and characters. That being said, I'll probably provide some sort of pronunciation guide to the readers (on a website or something). I mean, if I create a (naming) language, I should at least give people the possibility to learn how it sounds (and works).  :-\
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Francis Knight on October 17, 2015, 12:11:57 AM
I'm glad you said "website" because one of those at the start of a book tends to put me off quite badly (along with a cats list -- if you can't intro them so the reader can keep track...)

IMO (and YMMV) everything needed to enjoy the book should be in the text (yet clearly I do not do that 100% But if I do not, knock yourselves out for yourselves)
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: night_wrtr on October 17, 2015, 12:35:47 AM
over here in the states, we say "coffee shop".


A what? Ohhh, you mean Starbucks.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Lanko on October 17, 2015, 01:17:09 AM
In the Night Angel trilogy i read Kylar like Keelar, almost as killer, until i saw an interview with Brent Weeks  :)

In Prince of Thorns, Jorg as Yorg (i think that one is right...)

Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ScarletBea on October 17, 2015, 08:39:11 AM
(along with a cats list -- if you can't intro them so the reader can keep track...)
I think Raptori and Saurus would love a book with so many cats that it needs a cats list ;D

But I know what you mean - if an author wants to include the cast list, put it at the end, please!

In Prince of Thorns, Jorg as Yorg (i think that one is right...)
Nope, sorry, wrong again, hehe
I say it like that too and won't change, despite Mark saying it's supposed to be just like 'George'
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ArcaneArtsVelho on October 17, 2015, 09:33:53 AM
I'm glad you said "website" because one of those at the start of a book tends to put me off quite badly (along with a cats list -- if you can't intro them so the reader can keep track...)

IMO (and YMMV) everything needed to enjoy the book should be in the text (yet clearly I do not do that 100% But if I do not, knock yourselves out for yourselves)
Yeah, I'm not going to put one at the start of a book (or probably not even at the end of it). And I think that a cast list (or cats list  ;) ) at the start is quite silly.

A pronunciation/language guide is not something that a reader needs (to enjoy a book), or at least it shouldn't be. It's just something extra that might provide additional enjoyment for some readers. Or something like that.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: xiagan on October 17, 2015, 11:03:30 AM
You could've asked me, I remembered that it was AAV who shared that site. ;)
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Lanko on October 18, 2015, 12:06:31 AM
In Prince of Thorns, Jorg as Yorg (i think that one is right...)
Nope, sorry, wrong again, hehe
I say it like that too and won't change, despite Mark saying it's supposed to be just like 'George'

What! Would never have guessed.

After reading Kylar wrong the entire time (i'm not english native and "y" is almost never used for anything), i thought that maybe Tyrion and Arya had the same pronounce as Kylar on their "y". I never watched the show, but i googled how to pronounce their names, and i'm glad these 2 were correct.

I was pronouncing Daenerys and Cersei wrong. "Da" with the sound used in "dusk" and the "e" like in "café".
Cersei i spoke much slower, separating "cer" from "sei", but i just saw that is pronounced very fast, almost like "sensei".
Curious, i had a friend who said Cersei correctly, i made fun of him for sounding like "sensei" and he stopped using it...turns out he was right.

But i got characters like Xaro Zhoan Daxos and Azor Ahai correctly, go figure...

 
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: Mr.J on October 18, 2015, 12:09:31 AM
I don't think there's anything 'wrong' with those pronunciations honestly, I also always read it as Cersay rather than Cersee.

As for Dany well, you make up a name that has more vowels than sense there's nothing bad about pronouncing it wrong :P
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: ClintACK on October 18, 2015, 12:28:41 AM
over here in the states, we say "coffee shop".

Thank goodness.  If I had to do a global search and replace of "coffee shop" to "cafe" in my current project, I'd lose thirty-six precious words.
Title: Re: Fantasy Names / pronounciation
Post by: wimbly on October 18, 2015, 09:47:14 PM
I say it's your head, pronounce them as you like! I do that all the time (and I remember the shock from some people when they heard Brooks pronounce Shannara -- not how most people do!). Once it's left my hands, it's your book, so go for it.

That's exactly my approach to it, I'll pronounce names as they see fit to me while I am reading.   If I'm talking to someone about the book and they pronounce a name differently I'll notice and just keep doing it my way.

I agree - figuring your own pronunciation out is part of the fun.