"Norval" ... How do *you* pronounce it?

Benjamin Zimmer bgzimmer at BABEL.LING.UPENN.EDU
Fri Aug 28 13:57:06 UTC 2009

On Fri, Aug 28, 2009 at 2:31 AM, Wilson Gray<hwgray at gmail.com> wrote:
> I got a note from Facebook telling me that Norval [Surname] had become
> my Fb-friend. That reminded me of a grade-school classmate of mine
> down home in Texas. His name was Norval Moore, pronounced
> approximately [na:ve at l mo].

The only place I've run across that name is in the great Preston
Sturges movie "The Miracle of Morgan's Creek" (1944). Eddie Bracken
plays Norval Jones, who ends up posing as Ignatz Ratzkiwatzki to get
his beloved Trudy Kockenlocker out of a jam... Anyway, I'm pretty sure
it's pronounced ['nOrv at l] (rhymes with "Orville") in the film.

--Ben Zimmer

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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