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You say Tomato, I say Tomato

August 28th, 2006 Leave a comment Go to comments

Hugh Laurie, who is currently starring in an American medical drama called House, has recently said of trying to sound American, “I have not identified a single word that is pronounced the same in America as it is in England. It is as if everyone else is playing with a tennis racquet and you have a salmon.”

Now I can understand this of most day-to-day words, but you would think that the trading names of multinational consumer product companies would be pronounced the same – not so: I was surprised to learn recently that the Americans even pronounce Nokia and Nikon differently to us. While we say ‘Nockia’, they pronounce the ‘o’ saying ‘Nohkia’. We say “Nickon”, they say “Nykon”. Even the television adverts for Nokia and Nikon pronounce it that way.

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