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Accents on names of British-born, English mother-tongue people.

(32 Posts)
HelpOneAnother Mon 17-Dec-12 09:47:13

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HelpOneAnother Mon 17-Dec-12 09:48:02

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MissCellania Mon 17-Dec-12 09:48:06

I think I have to know what the name is before commenting.

HelpOneAnother Mon 17-Dec-12 09:49:48

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CelticPromise Mon 17-Dec-12 09:50:43

If the word has an accent it has an accent. My DS has a Welsh name with ô in it. Without the accent it is NOT spelt correctly. The sound would be different.

HelpOneAnother Mon 17-Dec-12 09:52:48

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amateurmum Mon 17-Dec-12 09:53:08

I have a child in my class who is British but lived in France for a short time. She has an acute accent on her name which I always remember when marking, naming books, writing Christmas cards etc.

Have to say I was a bit put out when Dad came in to complain that I had not put accent on coat peg name.

RarelyUnreasonable Mon 17-Dec-12 13:59:28

If the name has an accent, you need to use it.

But I have a hmm face about Uk-born, mother tongue English speakers using foreign names. Find it a tad pretentieux.

HelpOneAnother Mon 17-Dec-12 14:02:07

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HazeltheMcWitch Mon 17-Dec-12 14:02:24

I agree with Celtic - if it has an accent, it has an accent. So too does the person themselves have the last say on pronunciation.

Celtic - how do you say the o and the (o with an accent) in welsh please?

I am such a pedant that I need to know how to say it correctly!

HazeltheMcWitch Mon 17-Dec-12 14:02:56

And now I fear I may have mortally offended you as I did not capitalise Welsh.


surroundedbyblondes Mon 17-Dec-12 14:05:51

The sound of the letter is changed by the accent. Or in some languages the letter such as ä is a different letter altogether. If they've chosen to spell their child's name like that, then that's how it is. So writing Zoe instead of Zoë would be like writing Williem instead of William.

However it might be that they have chosen a pretentious name for their child. Though it's not the accent or lack of it that determines that....

HelpOneAnother Mon 17-Dec-12 14:22:55

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HelpOneAnother Mon 17-Dec-12 14:25:55

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TheJoyfulChristmasJumper Mon 17-Dec-12 14:26:40

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RarelyUnreasonable Mon 17-Dec-12 14:40:50

I think if there's any connection whatsoever with a country, a name from there is fine. I just hoik judgypants when foreign-sounding names are used to be exotic. Especially if accents are then used incorrectly.
But then I'm grumpy today stares at colicky baby and am probably being vair U.

CelticPromise Mon 17-Dec-12 14:51:54

Hazel the name is Siôn, pronounced same as Sean or Shaun. Without the accent it would be pronounced 'shone' as in 'the sun shone'. I don't think that's a Welsh word but I might be wrong (not a Welsh speaker).

No offence taken. grin

GrimmaTheNome Mon 17-Dec-12 15:06:39

Zoë looks wrong without the accent. Choe ought to but somehow isn't as bad.

If the owner of the name uses an accent, then you should - its good manners. Same sort of thing as using their preferred mode of address (Miss/Ms/Mrs etc).

confuddledDOTcom Mon 17-Dec-12 15:45:34

I have a daughter with an accent, it's a Welsh name and as far as I'm concerned if there's something wrong with the accent there's something wrong with the other letters too. Using Celtic's example, Si is the Welsh Sh (you see it in siop too) so if she spelt her son's name Sion then how is it any different to use the Si? How could she tell people it's not See-on or Sigh-on? How can she say it's not Shone if she doesn't use the ô? You can't rely on pedantry for only half a name!

TheJoyfulChristmasJumper Mon 17-Dec-12 17:19:26

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TheJoyfulChristmasJumper Mon 17-Dec-12 17:22:34

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ElphabaTheGreen Tue 18-Dec-12 19:51:35

Using another Welsh example, I have a friend, Sian, who only ever uses the rightful to bach (or circumflex to use the Franco-Anglo terminology) over the 'a' if she's in a particularly militant Welsh mood. The rest of the time neither she, nor anybody else, bothers with it, on account of it being seen as OTT pedantry, and we don't change the way we pronounce her name.

Would my use of commas in that last sentence class as OTT pedantry?

confuddledDOTcom Wed 19-Dec-12 15:27:36

when I read my daughter's name without the accent I read it with the wrong letters. also she's 4 so it's part of teaching her her name. I've never seen her so proud as when she was given a Christmas card last week and knew it was her name, the squeal of "my hat!" as she recognised her name was lovely! she struggles to find her name at nursery because they miss it off. it's part of her name.

and I apologise to the pedants, I am mobile and it doesn't put capitals in and I have a cannula in my right hand.

jkklpu Thu 27-Dec-12 21:16:55

Yes, accents matter - as others have pointed out, they tend to change pronunciation. I don't see why it's necessarily pretentious to use a name with an accent in it: there are plenty of pretentious accent-free names grin .

JessieMcJessie Sun 30-Dec-12 16:08:13

My friend's Dad is Turkish and she has a Turkish name with an umlaut on the "u". She doesn't speak Turkish though. I put it on if I am writing but don't bother when typing, she doesn't mind it being missed off but is extra happy when it is remembered. However, there is a difference between this and an English person missing off a French acute or grave accent, because most English speakers know how the French accent changes the sound, so it's like a mispronunciation if they ignore it, just like you'd get marked down for not putting the accents in your French homework.

However, please can someone tell me how "Sean/Shaun" and "shone" are pronounced differently? To me they sound the same!

PS, doesn't Katie Price's daughter Princess Tiaami have some totally faux accent somewhere in that car crash of a name? I would not be pandering to that grin

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