Pronunciation of the sort "amnejia" (= amnesia)

A. Maberry maberry at U.WASHINGTON.EDU
Tue Jan 8 18:53:16 UTC 2002

FWIW, according to the "Official Jim Nabors" website
( he was born in Sylacauga, Alabama, graduated
from the University of Alabama.

I often wondered if Gomer Pyle's accent was a exaggeration of some accent
he had heard while growing up.

maberry at

On Tue, 8 Jan 2002, Gerald Cohen wrote:

>     I recently was channel-surfing and came across an old Gomer Pyle movie.
> Gomer was talking in his typical Gomer Pyle fashion (does anyone
> really talk like that?), and I was startled to hear him pronounce the
> word "amnesia" as "amnejia."
>     This has bearing on an interesting speculation advanced by Douglas
> Wilson, viz.that "jasm" (= energy, enthusiasm; 19th-early 20th cent.;
> possible source of "jazz") might derive from a variant pronunciation
> of "(enthu)siasm."
>     I have encountered the objection (personal letter from an eminent
> U.S. linguist) that "enthusiasm" is pronounced only with a -z- (after
> the u), not the sound of the -s- of "leisure" or "pleasure." But if
> Gomer Pyle can pronounce "amnesia" as "amnejia," perhaps some people
> also pronounce "enthusiasm" as "enthujiasm" or something close to
> this.
>      So, might anyone be familiar with the pronunciation of the sort
> "amnejia" or "enthujiasm"?  Have there been any dialectal studies on
> this point?
> ---Gerald Cohen

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