Saturday, March 31, 2012

Glaring Mispronunciations by Leading Lights

First, let me remind you of the purpose behind this periodic feature on glaring mispronunciations: It stems from my belief that if someone who is well placed or who moves in “articulate circles” is mispronouncing a word, chances are that a few of my blog readers are also making the same pronunciation error. In other words, this feature is not at all meant to denigrate or ridicule any particular person. And the reason why I name the program and identify the speaker is solely to make this feature credible.

Two notable cases of mispronunciation by high profile people caught my ear in recent weeks:

(i) Albeit being pronounced as [awl-by-it] instead of [awl-bee-it] by Wharton Professor Susan Wachter during the January 19 edition of Marketplace. Hear it for yourself by clicking here—she begins speaking at about 2.0 minutes into the clip. BTW, Ms. Wachter has a very mellifluous voice and great diction.

(ii) Artifice being pronounced as [ahr-tuh-fys] instead of [ahr-tuh-fis] by filmmaker Kevin Smith during a March 20 interview on NPR’s “Morning Edition.” The mispronunciation of artifice occurs at 6.0 minutes into the interview. Here is the link.

© Copyright 2012 V. J. Singal

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