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Mairi Kathleen

(35 Posts)
Shenton Tue 16-Dec-14 13:43:29

How would you pronounce Mairi, just want to make sure I've got it right. Thank you

OHolyShite Tue 16-Dec-14 13:44:28

I would pronounce it like Mary.

Lovely names smile .

MrsPresley Tue 16-Dec-14 13:48:24

Is Mairi a different spelling of Mhari?

If it is then I would pronounce it Marry

How do you want to pronounce it OP?

Shenton Tue 16-Dec-14 13:49:17

Like Mary ... I was hoping that was right

petitdonkey Tue 16-Dec-14 13:50:35

I would say My-ree based on the spelling but that is because I have never seen it before.

MakeMeWarmThisWinter Tue 16-Dec-14 13:51:24

Mairi should be pronounced


Anything else is wrong, sorry

bluetrain Tue 16-Dec-14 13:54:06

Marry. Same as Mhairi. Different from Marie or Mary.

The Mairi's that I know pronounce it Marry.

bluetrain Tue 16-Dec-14 13:56:00

Marry = mah-ree incase anyone pronounces that differently.

TobyLerone Tue 16-Dec-14 13:57:31


mawbroon Tue 16-Dec-14 14:03:18

Mairi = Mah-ree. Definitely.

Mhairi is often used as an alternative spelling, but to be correct it should be pronounced Vah-ree.

I know there is something in the Gaelic grammar that means you use one form of the name sometimes and the other at other times, but I can't remember what it is......

treaclesoda Tue 16-Dec-14 14:04:47

I would pronounce it 'Marry'. Based solely on the fact that the only person I know who is called that pronounces it that way.

MokunMokun Tue 16-Dec-14 14:07:35

Mairi is the correct written form.

MakeMeWarmThisWinter Tue 16-Dec-14 14:40:44

'Mh' in Gaelic is a v sound. I think it's the affectionate way to say Mairi, if you're addressing her and want to be kind? But often also given as a proper name too.

It's not 'marry' as that implies a short 'a' sound where it should be longer and more like the 'a' sound in 'far' not 'cat'. Halfway between the two sounds really, same as 'Glasgow' although many English people give the 'a' in Glasgow an overly bright and short sound.


weegiemum Tue 16-Dec-14 14:45:31

I'd say "maah-ree"

Mhairi is the ?vocative? Version. Someone is called Mairi but depending on the grammatical situation could be called Mhairi (like other words beginning with M).

My dc are native Gaelic speakers - that's where this comes from! (Don't speak a word myself, apart from spotting the naughty words!!).

SomeSunnySunday Tue 16-Dec-14 16:32:35

Mah-ree ("Marry", only with more of an "aah" sound instead of the "a")

northernlurker Tue 16-Dec-14 16:35:05

I would go for Mah-ree too. Very pretty name. I must suggest it to my sil.

florascotia Tue 16-Dec-14 17:17:16

Agree with weegiemum, MakeMe and Mokun. The habit of putting 'h' after many consonants in Gaelic to soften them is called 'lenition'. It is triggered by a wide variety of grammatical circumstances. Hence Gaelic words change beginnings as well as endings to reflect their usage. As above posters have said, 'Mairi' is the name someone would call themself, but it becomes 'Mhairi' when that person is being spoken to.

Traditionally (and grammatically) Mairi was the name written on a birth certificate. However, there is a modern fashion to put Mhairi Perhaps Mhairi will eventually become a separate name, in the same way that Hamish (also a vocative form) has become distinct from Seamus?

myotherusernameisbetter Tue 16-Dec-14 18:33:28

Love Mairi - that's what my boys would have been called. (If the had been girls obviously grin )

I also know a Varry which must have come from Mhairi.

Northumberlandlass Tue 16-Dec-14 19:09:04

My name is Mari , pronounced by my English friends as Mah-ree and by my scottish friends as Marry

QueenMartha Tue 16-Dec-14 19:25:31

I know a Mhairi pronounced Vah-ree, a Mhairi pronounced Mah-ree, a Mairi pronounced Mah-ree and a Marie pronounced Mah-ree. It's a minefield.

Northumberlandlass Tue 16-Dec-14 19:27:01

I don't mind having an unusual name (I think my parents made up the spelling but knew how they wanted it pronounced) BUT I have spent my entire life telling people how to say it or spell it.

carbolicsoaprocked Tue 16-Dec-14 21:14:30

In my part of Scotland Mairi is pronounced like 'Marry' but with an emphasis on the (slightly longer) 'Ma'. Mhairi to my knowledge should be the same but with a V instead of an M, but I know a Mhairi who pronounces it 'Marry'.

mathanxiety Tue 16-Dec-14 22:22:52

Nouns including proper nouns change their spelling and pronunciation in Irish and Scots Gaelic depending on grammatical case - nominative, vocative, possessive, etc.

Mairi is the nominative and the correct form of the name, pronounced Maah-ree.
'A Mhairi...' is the vocative form (pronounced 'a Vaah-ree'), and used to address or call someone whose name is Mairi if you are speaking Scots Gaelic or Irish. The vocative form really should not be used as a name as if it was the nominative. It is not the name but the form of the name used in a specific (grammatical) case.

Hamish is not only an instance of use of the vocative as nominative, but the vocative spelling has been anglicised from '(a) Sheumais...' (pr. 'a Hamish') to Hamish. Seumas (pr. Shay-mus) is the nominative. Not only does Seumas get lenited, it gets an added I in the vocative. Mairi doesn't need the I.

Shenton Tue 16-Dec-14 23:22:18

I did think by not having the Mh it might be more Mary than Narry but happy either way. ThNk you

cloggal Wed 17-Dec-14 06:39:36

Yes to most of the above,
Mairi - Marry
Mhairi - Varry, but now often Marry
Mary - Mary
Marie - can be mareee or marry.

I like Mairi Kathleen with the marry pronunciation, fwiw

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