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May 22, 2006



Here in Washington state we have "Puyallup" pronounced pew-al-up (emphasis on the second syllable with the last one just about swallowed). We have a plethora of tribal names like Skookumchuck, Suquamish, Duwamish, Tillicum, Dosewallips and Tulalip, most of which are rather euphonious & pleasant to the ear. Then you have Norwegian Poulsbo, meaning Paul's home or hearth pronounced Paulz-boh not Poolz-boh & which was mistranscribed when they registered the town. It's misprounounced by everyone who doesn't live here and a few recent folks who do. But the real doozey is the Strait of San Juan de Fuca which is pronounced in a Spanglish way: San like sand, Juan- sort of correctly, and then you get to de Fuca and it's duh fewk-uh. It tripped me up for quite a while as I kept trying to pronounce it as if it were Spanish (hey, wait! It is)!

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