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Glenfiddich- Pronunciation

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How is Glenfiddich pronounced?

"Glenfiddich" (as in "sandwich")
1
5%
"Glenfiddikh"
20
95%
"Glenfidee"
0
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Total votes : 21

Postby Deactivated Member » Fri Mar 31, 2006 3:45 pm

I genuinely can't understand why people argue this point. Bruichladdich distillery has invented a spurious pronunciation for its name, which has been swallowed by people outside Scotland who don't know much about Scottish placenames. I can understand why they did it - it must be unfortunate top have been saddled with an unpronouncable name by your forerunners - but I do think that those who claim to know about whisky should aspire to get the pronunciation right rather than dance to the marketing men's tune.

The issue of what people who live there might say is interesting, but not clinching. Otherwise, the world would talk about Noo Yoik; Tyranno (as in Tyrannosaurus Rex); Sith Efrika; Straya; and Liverpewel. In any case, I can't imagine Scottish people actually pronouncing Bruichladdich with a silent ending unless it was because a whisky bottle had told them to.
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Postby Scotchio » Fri Mar 31, 2006 4:07 pm

Nice to see the correct spelling of Liverpewel, time the masses reclaimed their language.Quite right Nick
Just to add a little oil to this flaming chip pan my pre take over MJ companion says "pronounced Brook Laddie"
Just trying to help :lol:
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Postby Mr Fjeld » Fri Mar 31, 2006 4:09 pm

Nick Brown wrote:I don't view this as trying to create a static language or trying to prevent natural change. This is about marketing people "creating" new and simplified pronunciations (and making false analogies with English words) to make whisky brandnames easier to pronounce and easier to remember for people around the world. As it happens, Gaelic is undergoing plenty of change, with recent simplification of accents and spelling, creation of words for thirty, forty, fifty, etc, and standardization of the genetive case.

I accept that there are variations in pronunciation of both English and Gaelic throughout Scotland. However, the pronunciation of "ch" in words of Gaelic origin is not subject to any variation within Scotland as far as I know. It is, as Kallaskander says, like "ch" in the German word "Loch" (which doesn't mean lake!).

Very interesting and thanks for the answer. Obviously all languages are in dynamic change. Norwegian has two official languages - both closely related - and they are both changing rapidly due to both "simplification" of pronounciation and the import of english words. The so called "New Norwegian" is an interesting case as it's based on rural dialects and hence is a so called hybrid language between old dialects and danish. It also has an official committee ruling on what's propper norwegian or not - creating words to counter for influence from other languages. I think some of the best in this matter is the Icelandic people who have a very strict and well working system for balancing outside influence. The other language is a variant of danish of course - although all scandinavian languages are closely related not onlyh as a germanic language but also in similarity. The simplification of pronounciation is what bothers me most as it makes grown up people sound like children who cannot master the language properly. Anyway, the sounds of the galic language are familiar to germans and scandinavians alike.

Do you happen to know about words in galic with a norse influence - from the medieval times when the norwegian earls controlled the west highlands and western islands?

Christian
Last edited by Mr Fjeld on Fri Mar 31, 2006 5:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Fri Mar 31, 2006 4:41 pm

I have never claimed that the mispronunciation of Bruichladdich was initiated by the present management. Just that it is a mispronunciation that I find particularly hurtful to my ears.

I don't know enough about Gaelic to be able to point to links with Scandinavia. I understood that Scottish Gaelic had come from Ireland (with the whiskey!) as a development of the Ulster dialect of Irish Gaelic. I am sure there will have been some intermingling with Viking languages along the way. Seamus Heaney, the Irish poet's 1975 collection "North" made much of Ireland's roots in both Celtic and Viking culture.
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Postby toshie » Fri Mar 31, 2006 6:01 pm

Nick Brown wrote: This is about marketing people "creating" new and simplified pronunciations (and making false analogies with English words) to make whisky brandnames easier to pronounce and easier to remember for people around the world.

This is precisely why Glenfarclas has rebranded itself. Too many people were confused by the curly 'r' on the label and didn't know how to pronounce the product (I know, I know, there is a PROPER word for curly 'r' and some kind crittur from Springfield will no doubt be along shortly to tell me what it is :lol: )
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Postby Choochoo » Fri Mar 31, 2006 7:39 pm

I’m always being corrected on the pronunciation of Auchentoshan.

Auck-en-tosh-in
Ok-in-to-shan
Ocean-t’ocean
Awe-shan-token

So now I deliberately mispronounce it putting “R’s’ and “K’s” all over the place and just butchering it:

"Do you have a 21 year old Arkhandtarkshand in stock?"
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Postby Deactivated Member » Sat Apr 01, 2006 5:28 am

Well, Nick, I'd say you'd best tell your ears to get used to it. For whatever reason, that's how it's pronounced now. I can't understand why you argue this point.

And that's "Noo Yawk" and "Tronna". It's sometimes difficult to draw the line between accepted pronunciation and local accent, but there is a difference. I was at a fast food counter on the highway once when a woman asked the manager, "Do you have fox?" The manager stared blankly. "You know...fox! To eat with!" "Oh! Forks!" "That's right, fox!" To the Bostonian woman, it was the same pronunciation.

It's commonly accepted that the Massachusetts city of Worcester is pronounced "Wooster". But the locals say "Wista".

I still can't get myself to say "Ottawa" correctly.

Christian, if English is unduly influencing the languages derived from Old Norse, it's only returning the favor! French, too, now that I think of it.
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Postby Scotchio » Sat Apr 01, 2006 8:24 am

Channel 4 had a programme for the elderly called 4 Folks Sake which was mysteriously pulled and renamed, the Northern Irish often get into trouble when they ask "where is the fork and Knife?" often receiving a grudgeful single utensil, but my favourite unfortunate accident of language has to be the soulful Issac Guillary song "Naked and Bare" a love song about honesty and the meeting of minds in which he naively inserted the refrain "And our souls lay naked and bare" at the end of each chorus.20 years on and it still makes me smile. :D
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Postby MGillespie » Sat Apr 01, 2006 3:11 pm

By the way, if anyone is interested...the interview with Ian Millar of Glenfiddich on the 1937 single malt being auctioned off Tuesday night (as well as a new US-legal version of the Gran Reserva rum finish that doesn't use Cuban rum casks) is now online in the latest episode of WhiskyCast...

Mark
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Postby Badmonkey » Sat Apr 01, 2006 6:16 pm

[quote="MrTattieHeid"]

Christian, if English is unduly influencing the languages derived from Old Norse, it's only returning the favor! [/quote]

Mr. T strikes again. :D
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Postby Mr Fjeld » Sat Apr 01, 2006 7:04 pm

MrTattieHeid wrote: Christian, if English is unduly influencing the languages derived from Old Norse, it's only returning the favor! French, too, now that I think of it.

Certainly Mr T - it's very much a give and take - and now we're paying for the raping and pillaging!

Christian
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Postby Iain » Sat Apr 01, 2006 7:12 pm

Nick wrote "However, the pronunciation of "ch" in words of Gaelic origin is not subject to any variation within Scotland as far as I know. It is, as Kallaskander says, like "ch" in the German word "Loch" ..."

I think it's rather unfair of folks to argue with poor Nick over this - his statement is entirely correct in my experience.

But I've only lived in Scotland for nearly 50 years :)
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Postby Mr Fjeld » Sat Apr 01, 2006 7:20 pm

I agree! Nick has answered the questions and there isn't much to debate after that. Scottish galic is for many people difficult to pronounce and in most cases the difficulties appear to stem from their own language's phonetic reference point.

Christian
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Postby ApriliaKen » Sat Apr 01, 2006 9:07 pm

MrTattieHeid wrote:I was at a fast food counter on the highway once when a woman asked the manager, "Do you have fox?" The manager stared blankly. "You know...fox! To eat with!" "Oh! Forks!" "That's right, fox!" To the Bostonian woman, it was the same pronunciation.


Which reminds me of the classic Two Ronnies sketch where the customer asked for (and got) fork handles ... and really wanted four candles.

The sketch was very long and all in the same vein.

I go with Nick on the pronunciation of Bruichladdich - but I'd also say that I don't mind how other people do it. As long as they drink it...
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Postby Deactivated Member » Sun Apr 02, 2006 2:53 am

I certainly defer to Nick on all matters Gaelic. If the question is "How should 'Bruichladdich' be pronounced?", that's one thing. If the question is "How is 'Bruichladdich' pronounced?", that's another. (Even in the former case, "should" can be interpreted more than one way--according to the rules of Gaelic? The way the locals pronounce it?) And I will insist again that it is not Gaelic, but a Gaelic-derived placename, else it would be written "Broach a' Chladaich" (sorry Nick, that spelling's off the top of my head, but you know what I mean). As it is, I can easily see the final "ich" (which is not at all the same as the "aich" in the original word) being pronounced by English and Scots speakers through the years with a good hard "ch" through various levels of aspiration to virtual silentness. That sort of historical change in placename spelling and pronunciation is common the world over.

My memory fails...Nick, have you addressed Glen Garioch?
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Postby Iain » Sun Apr 02, 2006 11:20 am

Sorry chaps - I didn't follow the whole thread before adding my last post. My point was that I can't remember hearing a Scot (gaelic speaker or not)pronounce ch as k - in loch, broch, clachan, etc etc.

But of course ch is not always pronounced as in those words, not even in Gaelic names (inch, meaning island, springs to mind - Inchinnan, Inchmurrin etc).

It's my understanding that Bruichladdich lost it's final "ch" in pronunciation, simply because it would be difficult to say (try it!). The second "ich" was abbreviated to "i" for convenience, so to speak (!). But maybe someone knows better.

Garioch is a funny one. Folks from the North east deny that their pronunciation is peculiar (eg: the placename Tough is pronounced "Tooch, with the ch pronounced as in loch - but the locals would ask why that is any odder than the trad English pronunciation of Tough, ie; "Tuff"!).

I am going off to investigate the Garioch Conundrum - I will report back when my mission is accomplished!
Last edited by Iain on Mon Apr 03, 2006 7:24 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby mrt » Sun Apr 02, 2006 3:52 pm

Well, this is the question about which I had a discussion with my wife, last week! It's a nice surprise to see the subject here. I pronounce it like "-kh", but my wife suggested that it should be pronounced like "-wich" of sandwich. Now, if the majority is true, I'm happy with the current results :)
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Postby Deactivated Member » Mon Apr 03, 2006 5:01 am

Certainly the ch in Glenfiddich ought to be pronounced like the ch in loch. But if English speakers don't get it quite right--i.e. pronounce it Glenfiddick--I don't see that as anything worth losing sleep over. After all, that ch sound is not normally found in English. The incredibly gross mispronunciation of "lingerie" bothers me more. But then, I probably think more about lingerie than about Glenfiddich.
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Postby WestVanDave » Mon Apr 03, 2006 6:41 am

MrTattieHeid wrote: The incredibly gross mispronunciation of "lingerie" bothers me more. But then, I probably think more about lingerie than about Glenfiddich.



'Just when I thought it was safe to re-visit the forum - and give it another twirl - what do I get stuck in my noggin' but a picture of Mr. T in lingerie... there goes my hope of getting enough sleep to rid me of the Daylight Savings Time ills...

To add my thoughts on Bruichladdich - I concur with Iain on the explanation of the second "ch" being too awkward - and have treated it as silent, like "p" in bath... :wink: :wink: :wink:
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Postby Deactivated Member » Mon Apr 03, 2006 9:19 am

I did mention Glen Garioch way upthread. I don't think the origin of this is Gaelic and have read claims that it is Doric (a language that is basically English with a strong accent and local idiom). I've no idea what it means.

-ich and -aich is going to put non lingusits to sleep, I'm afraid. In Gaelic, there is a rule that if you have i or e (slender vowel) one side of a consonant group, you must have an i or e the other side. Similarly, if you have an a, o and u (broad vowel) one side, you must have an a, o or u on the other side. Often this results in a purely decoradive, silent vowel. Like all rules, though, it does have exceptions. In a'chladaich (genetive form of shore), the a after the d is silent - tempting to say that it is purely to adhere to the broad to broad rule, although it is actually a product of creating the genetive form. It is, though, pronounced as though it were spelt a'chladich.

In terms of whether everyone says "brook laddie" - they might say that in some parts of the world, but I have genuinely never heard it with a Scottish accent. That doesn't mean it is never said in Scotland, just that I have always heard it pronounced as it is spelt - that is, with the same ending as Caperdonich, Glenfiddich, Pittyvaich and Teaninich. And with a similar sound in the middle.
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Postby toshie » Mon Apr 03, 2006 2:46 pm

And then there's Strichen pronounced Strichen and Strachan pronounced Stra'an, not forgetting Findochty pronounced Finechty :?
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Postby Deactivated Member » Mon Apr 03, 2006 3:12 pm

I have never heard Strachan (the name) pronounced with a silent ch - only ch as in loch. In the Strichen and Findochty examples, I take it the ch is pronounced as in loch?
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Postby Alec » Mon Apr 03, 2006 3:34 pm

On the subject of Strachan, there is a man with that surname where I work, and he pronounces his name 'strawn'. Not sure if that helps in any way!
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Postby Deactivated Member » Mon Apr 03, 2006 5:04 pm

This whole discussion would be more productive if we were actually speaking to each other--it's very hard to represent some of these sounds in print. I would not, for example, and do not say "brook laddie"; the first part is more like "bruch", and the ending of the second part is not so open, but usually slightly aspirated--a remnant "ch", as it were. "Brook laddie" is simply a poor transliteration. Calling the place "the Laddie" is just a bit of cutesiness that one may feel free to ignore (or despise, if you will).

Dave, I never said I wear lingerie! It's for my (sherry) butt, of course. And I'm only kidding, anyway--as far as I'm concerned, lingerie is just another obstacle to be got out of the way. At least, that's what I seem to remember. Okay, enough of that, you'll be twirling the rest of the week. (I hear you were a champion baton twirler in high school.)

There may be a silent p in your bath, but not mine!
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Postby Deactivated Member » Mon Apr 03, 2006 5:19 pm

Alec wrote:On the subject of Strachan, there is a man with that surname where I work, and he pronounces his name 'strawn'. Not sure if that helps in any way!


Have just asked a colleague, who tells me that although the normal pronunciation is Strachan, there is a place of that spelling but pronounced Strawn somewhere in the northeast, and that some people of the name use this pronunciation. Perhaps this is related to the Doric dialect - c.f. Glen Garioch.
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Postby irishwhiskeychaser » Mon Apr 03, 2006 5:37 pm

I have an Idea... why don't we all start just pronounce it Glenfid duck and be done with it :wink:
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Postby Iain » Mon Apr 03, 2006 5:45 pm

Dialect? Doric Language, please! :D

Names and pronunciations in the North East can be awfy confusing to the visitor.

Take Aberchirder. The locals pronounce it "Foggie" :? :wink:

Still seeking expert assistance re Glen Garioch....
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Postby toshie » Mon Apr 03, 2006 5:45 pm

Nick Brown wrote:I have never heard Strachan (the name) pronounced with a silent ch - only ch as in loch. In the Strichen and Findochty examples, I take it the ch is pronounced as in loch?


You're right Nick, both pronounced ch as in loch. And there is a famous historian whose name is Huw Strachan, and he prefers it to be pronounced Straun. As you say over the pond: Go Figure :)
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Postby Iain » Mon Apr 03, 2006 5:49 pm

"I have an Idea... why don't we all start just pronounce it Glenfid duck and be done with it "

I will, IWC. Just as soon as I get back from my holiday in Madge Yorker :wink:
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Postby rifkin » Mon Apr 03, 2006 6:04 pm

Can't say I'm that familiar with this pronunciation, but the last time I was in Scotland, the guys at the pubs said "Glen-Fidd-Irch" with a long rch-sound at the end. I don't quite know how to spell this sound, but the r was almost non-existent. And it was gone by the time a few more drams were consumed. These were mainly locals (a great pub in George St). Great clientel by the way. 8)

However, when I attended the tour at the Heritage Centre the guide said "Glen-Fidd-Ick". The same did the staff at RMW at the Royal Mile.

Here in Norway most people aren't familiar with the pronunciation, so it's called "Glen-Fidd-Isj".

How to avoid the problem? Don't buy Glenfiddich :?
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Postby karlejnar » Mon Apr 03, 2006 11:45 pm

Interesting discussion.

Another example is placenames ending with 'ick' at least one I resently had myself corrected was the pronounciation of Hawick. Untill we stopped in the town for a meal I thought it was 'Hay-wik'. But learned that the locals called it 'hoik'.

Well there you go :roll:
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Postby WestVanDave » Tue Apr 04, 2006 3:17 am

MrTattieHeid wrote:Dave, I never said I wear lingerie! It's for my (sherry) butt, of course. And I'm only kidding, anyway--as far as I'm concerned, lingerie is just another obstacle to be got out of the way. At least, that's what I seem to remember. Okay, enough of that, you'll be twirling the rest of the week. (I hear you were a champion baton twirler in high school.)

There may be a silent p in your bath, but not mine!


I never got into twirling batons - having much preferred watching the twirlers over the twirlees - but I did twirl a mean drumstick in my drumming days...even for a jazz snob.

As for silent, like "p" in bath, I'm more of a shower guy...

...and as for your recollection of what lingerie is (and isn't) for, well, to quote Sponge Bob: "Good Luck with that"...
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Postby WHISKY WILLY » Tue Apr 04, 2006 8:35 am

Hey this debate reminds me of a Scots girl I used to know,she drank more whisky than anybody I knew(so she was obviously an expert!)
She always pronounced it glenfiddikh and if anybody argued with her she used to hit them!She was very aggresive so I should pronounce it like that just in case she is around.
That was also the pronounciation that they used on the stand at Whisky Live in London and they should know!
I have ordered it more times than just about anyone else and I do get people trying to say that I dont pronounce it correctly,but when my friends say who I am they always defer to me.So the correct way would be the way that the greatest number of people say the word.
I do think that the Glenfiddich 12 years old is the best starter or everyday whisky and allways recommend this to people who want to start drinking whisky(4 people asked me last week!)If you never go below this as a baseline you shouldnt get a headache!Which I never do.
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