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Glom
2003-Apr-05, 11:28 AM
Since constellation names are mostly Latin with a few Greek and the occasional other one, shouldn't they be pronounced according the ways of the language?

eg.
Cancer should be pronounced kan-ker
Virgo should be pronounced wer-go
Sagittarius should be pronounced sag-it-ar-ius not saj-it-air-ius
Canes Venatici should be pronounced can-es wen-att-ick-ee
Ursa Major should be pronounced er-sa mar-yor
Cepheus should be pronounced che-fee-us (I think the first letter is a chi)

heliopause
2003-Apr-05, 03:44 PM
Che-fee-us? Is the greek letter Chi pronounced "chee" or "kai?" I thought it was the latter.

gethen
2003-Apr-05, 04:33 PM
It's always been my understanding, granted based on studying Latin a long time ago, that since there are no longer any native Latin speakers, the matter of proper pronunciation is a moot point. No one knows how the Romans pronounced the letter "v" for instance. Could be wrong though.

snowcelt
2003-Apr-05, 04:48 PM
Heck! I always understood that we do know how the Romans pronounced w. For years and years I have been pronouncing the Swedish car manufactorer Volvo(Latin: I roll) "Wall woe."

Glom
2003-Apr-05, 04:56 PM
Che-fee-us? Is the greek letter Chi pronounced "chee" or "kai?" I thought it was the latter.

According to my Classics teacher, it is pronounced with a clearing throat sound, which is very hard to demonstrate on the board. It's used today in hebrew. But a hard c sound is also acceptable.

heliopause
2003-Apr-05, 05:39 PM
Che-fee-us? Is the greek letter Chi pronounced "chee" or "kai?" I thought it was the latter.

According to my Classics teacher, it is pronounced with a clearing throat sound, which is very hard to demonstrate on the board. It's used today in hebrew. But a hard c sound is also acceptable.

I see. So I guess chutzpah (properly pronounced) starts with the same sound.

Glom
2003-Apr-05, 08:12 PM
I see. So I guess chutzpah (properly pronounced) starts with the same sound.

Yeah, that's it.

gethen
2003-Apr-05, 09:35 PM
Heck! I always understood that we do know how the Romans pronounced w. For years and years I have been pronouncing the Swedish car manufactorer Volvo(Latin: I roll) "Wall woe."

I make no claims to infallibility--like I said, it was a long time ago. But I like the sound of Walwoe.

Dickenmeyer
2003-Apr-06, 04:48 AM
Heck! I always understood that we do know how the Romans pronounced w. For years and years I have been pronouncing the Swedish car manufactorer Volvo(Latin: I roll) "Wall woe."
I learned the V= W rule for the consonant form in high school Latin class as well, and my copies of Wheelock's Latin Grammar, Latin for the Illiterati, & Latina pro Populo all agree. Vv was used interchangeably as a vowel and a consonant, as was Ii, which is why all of the Latin inscriptions on old buildings look so odd and why "W" looks like a double "V" instead of a double "U". According to Wheelock the rounded vowel form for U didn't begin appearing until the late second century AD and the hooked consonant form for J didn't start showing up until well into the Middle Ages. Wheelock also says that the letter "C" was always pronounced with a hard "K" sound, the letter "K" itself was almost never used in Latin, so Cancer would indeed be properly pronounced "kanker" in classical Latin. It can be a little tricky trying to balance "correct" classical Latin pronunciation with modern English pronunciation and not wind up sounding either terribly pretentious or completely ridiculous or both so I say just go with what sounds right to you. [/i]

Argos
2003-Apr-06, 09:50 PM
It's always been my understanding, granted based on studying Latin a long time ago, that since there are no longer any native Latin speakers, the matter of proper pronunciation is a moot point. No one knows how the Romans pronounced the letter "v" for instance. Could be wrong though.

Some dialects spoken in certain regions of Italy and Romania may offer a clue on how Latin shoud sound. They still retain a lot of the original characteristics of Latin language.