April 5th, 2012

  • ctanle

Pronunciation of the word 'Cambridge'

Hi fellow linguaphiles,

I was wondering if anyone knew the reason why the names of the two most famous Cambridges -- England's and New England's -- are pronounced like came-bridge, rather than cam-bridge? You would expect the latter because 'cam' should be pronounced like 'cap', not like 'cape'.

I know that the toponyms in English can be spoken in rather bizarre fashions (e.g. Worcester, Greenwich, Edinburgh), but perhaps someone could help me trace the specific reason for Cambridge's being weird also. Thanks!

Translation help wanted.

No, it's not for a job, but rather a one-word favor.

I'm wanting to find someone fluent in either Cantonese or Mandarin (or both) to translate the word "moaning" (as in, "He is /moaning/ because that pun was SO bad!").

I don't need the Chinese character; I'd like to know how it's pronounced, and how it would be "spelled" in English.

Thank you in advance for any replies.

Portuguese questions


So I am an American student who will be entering college in the fall. I speak English and Portuguese at home, and I'd like to study Portuguese. Because I only speak it, I have no grammatical knowledge of the language, however, I do know a bit of vocabulary. I'm wondering if I should bother with a placement test, or if I should just start with the beginner's course to develop a solid foundation.

Also, my school only offers Brazilian Portuguese and I speak European Portuguese at home - I worry that if I don't study it now, then I may never do it. I have heard that the primary difference is in pronunciation and because I already pronounce Portuguese words in a particular way, then that will carry over to the new words that I learn. Will the differences be detrimental to my speaking?

Thank you!