Bagging the big five; was RE: Gladiolus tristis

Jim McKenney
Thu, 21 May 2009 08:40:48 PDT
Thanks, Dell. That name has bothered me from the first time I saw it.

Years ago I did check a Peruvian atlas for a matching place name, but for
some reason I came up with Paramon, not Paramonga. While in my deluded state
I thought the etymology was paramon + the Greek word for earth gaia (spelled
in Latin gaea). 

How did I miss Paramonga: a Google search turned up loads of hits. 

But the word is still spelled funny. If it is meant to be Paramonga + i + a,
and if we treat Paramonga as an aboriginal word not declined in the style of
Latin words, and if the i is meant to be the standard i connective vowel
used to make Latin compound words, then we have three vowels in a row:
a-i-a. Something's got to give. 

Is it meant to be pronounced as a six syllable word: pa-ra-mon-ga-i-a? 

I'll bet a lot of people pronounce it as a five syllable word -
pa-ra-mon-gai-a as if it were spelled paramongaja. 


Whatever, it's still near the top of my list.

And thanks again for straightening me out. 

Jim McKenney

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