Pronunciation tip: Canada’s provinces, territories, and main cities
July 1 is Canada Day, and so in honour of that, I’ve done a video about the names of all the provinces and territories and their capitals and largest cities. If you’re not Canadian and intend to talk about Canada, you will probably find this useful. If you are Canadian and know how to say all these names, you may still find this useful because I say where all the names are from. I bet you don’t know! Hint: It’s mostly rivers, lakes, and Queen Victoria’s family.
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Tagged Alberta, British Columbia, Calgary, Canada, capitals, Charlottetown, cities, Edmonton, Fredericton, Halifax, how to say, Inuvik, Iqaluit, Manitoba, Moncton, Montreal, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, North West Territories, Northwest Territories, Nova Scotia, Nunavut, Ontario, Ottawa, Prince Edward Island, Pronunciation Tip, provinces, Quebec, Quebec City, Regina, Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, St. John's, the Yukon, Toronto, Vancouver, Vancouver Island, Victoria, Whitehorse, Winnipeg, Yellowknife, Yukon
This is a word that can really throw you.
I don’t just mean its object, that butch tree, that brute tech, that better-than-catapult that can hurl large stones, small cars, and any old piano or organ through the countryside:
If you’ve never studied music, you may not have heard of Zoltán Kodály. But listen to this. He’s a Hungarian composer who can teach us something interesting about rhythm… not with his music (though that’s nice enough); with his name.
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?
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!
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 a plus u equals o?
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.
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 w is called “double u” instead of “double v.”
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…
Posted in pronunciation tips
Tagged Aalborg, Aarhus, Ålborg, Århus, Copenhagen, Danish, den lille Havfrue, how to say, Københaven, Pronunciation Tip, the Little Mermaid
My latest pronunciation tip is on the name of a place (several places, really) and a letter: