Wilson Gray wilson.gray at RCN.COM
Mon Apr 4 20:21:34 UTC 2005

On Apr 4, 2005, at 12:30 PM, Mark A. Mandel wrote:

> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       "Mark A. Mandel" <mamandel at LDC.UPENN.EDU>
> Subject:      Re: Nicaragua
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> --------
> Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at YAHOO.COM> sez:
> Given that the sounds represented by the spellings "g," "gh," and "ch"
> as pronounced in Dutch are sounds that don't exist in English, I would
> be stunned to hear any English-speaker pronounce "Gogh" as the Dutch
> do. It would be a real accomplishment. I've tried it, quite
> unsuccessfully, while vacationing in Amsterdam and with Dutch friends
> in here in the States. It's *very* difficult.
> <<<
> Not for all of us, bubbele.
> -- Mark

I'm stunned. Even though I haven't heard you say it. I'm *very*
impressed by the mere claim itself. An article in Life magazine in the
'50's claimed that "Gogh" was so weird that even the Dutch no longer
knew the correct pronunciation. Of course, this was the same Life
magazine that once published an article claiming that the Watusi, the
same African people today known as the "Tutsi," were white in the
"European" sense. Hence, Life's claims about Dutch are probably
to be taken with a box of salt.


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