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Pronunciation of “Nova Scotia”

I recently saw the trailer of “Anne of Green Gables”, and the Marilla character can clearly be heard saying that she is expecting an orphan boy from “Nova Scotia”, but she pronounces that “ti” inn a very strange way. It sounded like “Scothia” or “Scozia”, I couldn’t tell. Is this an alternative pronunciation for the usual “SCO-SHA”?

  • January 19, 2012
  • Posted by Lori
  • Filed in Misc
  • 8 comments

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Typo: make that "weren't".

JJMBallantyne March 18, 2012, 2:15pm

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"but I speak as a Scot when I say that the Scottish version is as I described: Scoh-shia. What you say in the new Canadian one I leave for you to report."

We were'nt discussing the Latin name for Scotland; we were discussing the name of a Canadian province.

Canadians say "SKOE-shuh". How you might choose to pronounce the Latin name for Scotland is moot.

JJMBallantyne March 18, 2012, 2:14pm

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@Brus
I agree. It is No-va Scoh-shia.
Certainly not Scoh-thia nor Sco-shuh.
But probably Professor Ballantyne will assert that that is petty snobbery.

Hairy Scot March 16, 2012, 5:22pm

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I am not quarrelling with Nova (as you say, it is Latin, and I say that is no reason to say "No=wa") but I speak as a Scot when I say that the Scottish version is as I described: Scoh-shia. What you say in the new Canadian one I leave for you to report.
Reminds me of Rhodesia, which everyone pronounced with "Rho-DEEzh-ya" at the end, except my aunt who was a Rhodesian, who called it "Rho-DEEZ-ee-a". Now it's called Zimbabwe, but that's another language, of course.

Brus March 16, 2012, 5:14pm

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Well, as one who has lived "Down East", I agree with "dougincanada" here: I've only ever heard NOE-vuh SKOE-shuh.

Nova Scotia is Latin, of course. If it were pronounced in that language it would be NOH-WAH* SKOT-EE-AH.

You'd be hard pressed to find that version in common usage though!

* Or -VAH if you're going with Ecclesiastical Latin.

JJMBallantyne March 16, 2012, 4:47pm

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Nova Scotia = New Scotland. Old Scots word for Scotland: Scotia. pronounced SCO-sh-ya with a little "grace note" of a "y" or "i" before the final "a". Like Indonesia, where there is a little sound "y" before the final "a": Indo-NEEZH-ya. Honest, I'm a Scotsman, and I like Bali too.

Brus March 16, 2012, 4:09pm

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Out here in BC, Canada, I have only heard Sco-sha as you say.
'Scothia'? I would say this girl has a lisp!

dougincanada January 31, 2012, 11:33am

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Much the same as Julia Guillard mispronouncing "negotiate", it's probably a deliberate aberration in the quest to be unique.

Hairy Scot January 30, 2012, 9:14am

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