Tag Archives: how to say

Pronunciation tip: jalapeño and habanero

I made a little trip (two blocks) to my greengrocer at the St. Lawrence Market to shoot this pronunciation tip, just so I could illustrate it. It was a one-shot deal… and not without technical difficulties. But hey, I say the words, I eat the peppers. What more do you want?

Pronunciation tip: Dvořák

I’ve been listening to classical music on the radio a lot lately. A perennially popular composer – for good reason – is Antonín Dvořák. Because English speakers are the way we are, I’ve been hearing a certain amount of “duh-vor-jack” for his name, which is… nah. So, for those who are wondering about how best to say it, here you go: both the way Czechs say it and the way ordinary non-Czech-speaking English speakers can reasonably say it. Because there’s a sound in the Czech that is deliberately difficult!

Pronunciation tip: Sauvignon

You probably know how to say sauvignon, though every so often I hear someone who doesn’t. But do you know why there are two very different wine grape varieties with it in their names (Cabernet Sauvignon and Sauvignon Blanc) and why in French plus equals o?

Pronunciation tip: Calgary

You might think that Calgary would be a straightforward thing to say. Well, you can say it as you see it and be understood, yes, but the odds are pretty good you’ll immediately sound like someone not from around Calgary. Here’s a quick tip – less than a minute – on how Calgarians say it.

Pronunciation tip: Łódź

My latest pronunciation tip lets you in on a couple of things in Polish you’ve probably wondered about. Now you’ll know how to pronounce the name of the city Łódź – and Wrocław and Kraków, while you’re at it. And as an added bonus you’ll know why is called “double u” instead of “double v.”

Pronunciation tip: Aalborg and Aarhus

Last time around, I talked about Å. Well, in Denmark, å used to be written as aa and still shows up that way in some place names sometimes. And I’m sure people have occasionally wondered about how to say Aalborg and Aarhus. Thing is, I’ve been avoiding talking about Danish. The Danish language is… well, you’ll see…

Pronunciation tip: Å

My latest pronunciation tip is on the name of a place (several places, really) and a letter: