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    • Join Date: Jun 2009
    • Posts: 1

    accent and english surnames

    I found to prnouce english surnames and sometime english names difficults as most of my childrens frieneds are english.Any suggstions are welcome

  1. jackolantern's Avatar

    • Join Date: Jun 2009
    • Posts: 94

    Re: accent and english surnames

    Some of the difficulty comes from the fact that many people keep their surnames from other countries.

    One thing I can say about true English surnames is that they often have roots in a place or profession. Hundreds of years ago, people's surnames were given from what they did. For example, "Farmer" and "Smith" are two common surnames that began this way. So if you see words you recognize in an English last name, you are probably safe to pronounce it like the word you know.

    Also, it is not considered rude to ask someone how to pronounce their last name if you have never seen it before. They will probably be able to tell you are learning English, and many people are actually quite happy to talk about their family name.

  2. Mrs Irons's Avatar

    • Join Date: Feb 2009
    • Posts: 15

    Re: accent and english surnames

    You may find this hepful: Forvo: the pronunciation guide. All the words in the world pronounced by native speakers

    I think it's a neat website where you can post a name or any English word that you can't or find difficult to pronounce, and if someone knows, he/she will prounce that word/phrase for you.

    It's difficult to prounce names, especially those of foreign origins, as they usually don't follow normal pronunciation rules, and you more often than not can't find them in dictionaries. The only way is to ask the name-holder or somebody who knows how to prounce it.

  3. jackolantern's Avatar

    • Join Date: Jun 2009
    • Posts: 94

    Re: accent and english surnames

    Wow! There are no words pending for English on Forvo. That means if you ask for a pronunciation, it would probably be done in just a minute or two.

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