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01101001
2005-Jan-03, 10:32 AM
So, I was watching some video, maybe from the ESA website (http://www.esa.int/SPECIALS/Cassini-Huygens/), maybe not (because I can't find it again), and the female narrator, with a, to me, British accent, called it the HYOO-guns probe.

I recall ol' Cristiann's name being pronounced HOY-gens in college. Is that HYOO-guns pronuciation favored/favoured in Britain, or was it just the case of a hired voice doing the best she could with unfamiliar material?

Turning to the ultimate arbiter of good taste, the Internet, I find these pronunciations:

HOY ginz (http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/kids/fun-facts-history.cfm)
hoygens (http://www.ccastronomy.org/astro_alert_alerts.htm)
Harkens (http://www.antonine-education.co.uk/Physics_A2/Options/Module_8/Topic_3/TOPIC_3.HTM)
How'-kenz (http://www.sil.si.edu/DigitalCollections/HST/Huygens/huygens-introduction.htm)
HIGH-guns (http://www.billingsgazette.com/index.php?id=1&display=rednews/2004/05/28/build/nation/60-saturn-moon.inc)
HOU-gens (http://www.lawrencehallofscience.org/pass/ringworld/rw_script.pdf)
HY guhnz (http://benjamincreations.tripod.com/europe/netherland/netherland.html)
Highghchenz (http://www.stanford.edu/~sipma/dureq.html) (sorry; my transcription from a how-to-pronounce-Dutch audio)
hj.xəns (http://216.239.57.104/search?q=cache:QGSmtpd7XYIJ:serendipity.lascribe.n et/inspiration/2004/07/saturns-rings/+huygens+pronounced&hl=en&start=51)
Higgens (http://www.temporaldoorway.com/library/fiction/novel/ringclimber/therings.htm)

So what is it?

Actually, while compiling this list, I left that MP3 audio of Dutch famous names (http://www.stanford.edu/~sipma/dr1.MP3) playing in a loop, and I'm pretty sure I know what the real answer is now, after hearing it 50 times. (Rembrandt, Vermeer, Van Gogh, Huygens... It's like poetry.)

Maybe I should run a poll, but the software probably doesn't give enough choices. It seems to me, from Googling, that HOY-genz and kin are probably seen most often on websites.

JohnD
2005-Jan-03, 11:49 AM
Does it matter?
How do you pronounce "Halley"?

He pronounced it "Hawl-i", but does that matter?

Happy New Year!
John

Andrew
2005-Jan-03, 02:34 PM
Hoy-gens is all I've ever heard it pronounced as over here.

Argos
2005-Jan-03, 05:14 PM
Hugh-gyns around here. Thats the best they can do.

Wolverine
2005-Jan-04, 12:05 AM
Highghchenz (http://www.stanford.edu/~sipma/dureq.html) (sorry; my transcription from a how-to-pronounce-Dutch audio)

This would be technically correct, but since we English speakers aren't generally equipped for the required Dutch pronunciatory gymnastics, HOY gunz will suffice. :)

Ian R
2005-Jan-04, 01:38 AM
If Hoy-gens is what Sir Patrick uses, then that's what I'm sticking with! :wink:

ngc3314
2005-Jan-04, 01:46 AM
Highghchenz (http://www.stanford.edu/~sipma/dureq.html) (sorry; my transcription from a how-to-pronounce-Dutch audio)

This would be technically correct, but since we English speakers aren't generally equipped for the required Dutch pronunciatory gymnastics, HOY gunz will suffice. :)

Although those of us who worked for a couple of years in n the Huygens Lab in Leiden might want the extra practice. I mean, it's not like trying to say Scheveningse Scheepsbeschuitjes or something.[1]

I thought I remembered another H as in Huyghens - apparently there are variant spellings from his own time. Well, if multiple spellings are good enough for Shakespeare and junk-mail list managers, they're good enough for Christia(a)n Huyg(h)ens.

[1] A literal shibboleth said to date from World War II. Meaning "ship's biscuits from Scheveningen" (the seaward suburb of the Hague), it would be easily mispronounced by unwary German occupiers even if trying to pass for Dutch. Or that's the story.