Latin pronounciation

Jim McKenney
Fri, 12 Dec 2008 06:06:28 PST
When trying to figure out the sensible way to pronounce a botanical word, it
helps a lot to know the etymology of the word. 

The name Kniphofia is based on a German name, Kniphof. The ph in this word
is not the Greek letter phi; it simply results from having combined knip +
hof. If you want to honor the eponym, pronounce both the k and the n and
pronounce the p and the h separately - as Neil suggested in his "Swedish"
pronunciation. I put "Swedish" in quotes because there are some of us who
are not Swedish who pronounce it this way, too. 

In the English speaking world, or at any rate the ethnocentric,
averse-to-other-languages ugly American world, it's generally pronounced
ny-FOF-ee-a. Knife-oaf-ia is new to me - I think the second syllable says it
Jim McKenney
Montgomery County, Maryland, USA, 39.03871º North, 77.09829º West, USDA zone
7, where in an old book I have the author, who was answering questions
received from the gardening public, relates the story of the woman who
complained that her ox Alice was not thriving.

My Virtual Maryland Garden
Webmaster Potomac Valley Chapter, NARGS 
Editor PVC Bulletin 
Webmaster Potomac Lily Society

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