Blatant Bibliophile Blog

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Posts Tagged ‘pronunciation’

Not Sure How to Pronounce that Word? Help Is Just a Click Away!

Posted by blatantbibliophiles on November 26, 2007


Have you tried Inogolo? Inogolo is a made up word from two Latin words: “in” meaning “not” and “iuguolo” meaning “butcher.” The purpose of the Inogolo website is to help you not butcher words, particularly names of specific persons, places, and things, or as your English teacher likes to call them, proper nouns.  It provides a searchable database of names with both phonetic and audio pronunciations in English. The website is the brainchild of some guy from Texas named Stuart Yoder who is fond of orthoepy–the study of pronunciation. Where does he get his information?

  • personal knowledge (for most common English names);
  • people– if he can locate someone with the name he asks them;
  • if the language of origin can be determined he asks a native speaker of the language if possible;
  • a partial list of some web resources and books referenced is at the inogolo pronunciation resources page;
  • user submissions and corrections through the online suggestion submission form are very helpful;
  • other resources used– the Internet (blogs,forums,news articles,etc), radio and TV media, encyclopedias, and dictionaries.

For names of specific people and places–

For the names of places, the primary reference is Merriam Webster’s Geographical Dictionary. For disputed pronunciations other authorities are checked as well.

For the names of people, pronunciations are verified and cross-referenced across multiple authorities when possible. The names of people no longer living tend to generate the most disputes. If a pronunciation is disputed it will be noted and usually any alternate pronunciations are given as well. Sources include:

  • the person themselves or their representative,
  • for places, Merriam Webster’s Geographical Dictionary,
  • authorities and sources listed at the inogolo pronunciation resources page. (Yes, he cites his sources!)
  • media sources such as radio and TV,
  • the Internet (blogs, forums, news articles, etc.)

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