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How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Jenise » Mon Jun 17, 2013 1:03 pm

Specifically, the first five letters. Pork, porch or porsh?
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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Karen/NoCA » Mon Jun 17, 2013 1:22 pm

Italian version like this, and this is the way my grandparents (portuguese said it)
http://www.howdoyousaythatword.com/word/porchetta/
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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Frank Deis » Mon Jun 17, 2013 1:27 pm

In Italian it is unambiguous, PORK. Forgive a brief lesson

ca KA
co KO
cu KU
ce CHE
ci CHI

To get the hard KE or KI you add an H

cia CHA
cio CHO
ciu CHU
che KE
chi KI

Examples to ponder -- cello, spaghetti, cinese (meaning Chinese), cio-cio-san.

Americanized names are often pronounced wrong -- the president of Rutgers "Barchi" which should be "barky" but he says "bar-chee"
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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Hoke » Mon Jun 17, 2013 1:47 pm

As has been pointed out. it's "pork-etta".

But a minor niggle with Frank:

Americanized names are often pronounced wrong -- the president of Rutgers "Barchi" which should be "barky" but he says "bar-chee"


No, it's not pronounced as the Italian pronunciation. But it's not "wrong" either: it's Americanized. How can someone who decides how he or she wants his/her name to be pronounced be "wrong"?
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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Frank Deis » Mon Jun 17, 2013 2:47 pm

Hoke, as I think was obvious from context, not entirely serious about saying Barchi pronounces his name wrong. My father often had to correct people who pronounced "Deis" various ways -- and he said "if I said it's pronounced "SMITH" who could say I was wrong??"

But I like clear and unambiguous rules and Italian has very clear and unambiguous rules, so having learned those and having observed that they are obeyed 100% in Italy, it grates on the ear to hear people breaking them, altho as you pointed out it happens all the time here. My theory, why change it, why not say it as an Italian would? We've kept the Swiss/German pronunciation "DICE" despite everyone calling us "DEECE" or worse. My mailman calls me DIAZ.

Bruschetta drives me a little crazy -- altho people don't seem to have a problem with Focaccia or Pancetta or Ciabatta...

You'd be OK if everyone started saying "spa JET tee"?
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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Hoke » Mon Jun 17, 2013 3:18 pm

Frank Deis wrote:Hoke, as I think was obvious from context, not entirely serious about saying Barchi pronounces his name wrong. My father often had to correct people who pronounced "Deis" various ways -- and he said "if I said it's pronounced "SMITH" who could say I was wrong??" I knew you were being tongue in cheek, Frank.

But I like clear and unambiguous rules and Italian has very clear and unambiguous rules, so having learned those and having observed that they are obeyed 100% in Italy, it grates on the ear to hear people breaking them, altho as you pointed out it happens all the time here. My theory, why change it, why not say it as an Italian would? We've kept the Swiss/German pronunciation "DICE" despite everyone calling us "DEECE" or worse. My mailman calls me DIAZ. Something Italian is 'clear and unambiguous??? Whoda thunk it? :D

Bruschetta drives me a little crazy -- altho people don't seem to have a problem with Focaccia or Pancetta or Ciabatta... Oh ho, do I agree...brooshettah drives me bonkers too; one of my pet peeves; grates on me to hear it. It's that confusion from Italian to American on the hard CH that apparently creates the difficulty. Although we've at least conquered Chee-an-tee. Which used to come in fiaschi.

You'd be OK if everyone started saying "spa JET tee"?
UGH! I don't ghet that. Now you're just being silly. Everyone knows its "sketty" or "pusghetty".
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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Mark Lipton » Mon Jun 17, 2013 3:45 pm

Frank Deis wrote:In Italian it is unambiguous, PORK. Forgive a brief lesson

ca KA
co KO
cu KU
ce CHE
ci CHI

To get the hard KE or KI you add an H

cia CHA
cio CHO
ciu CHU
che KE
chi KI


Just to pile on to your excellent exposition, Frank, it's a generalizable rule for Latin languages including, to an extent, English: c and g take "hard" sounds when followed by a,o and U and "soft" sounds when followed by e and i. In Spanish, to get a hard g before e and i, you make it "gu" as in guitar, guerra, otherwise it's soft as in gelado (pronounced hay-lah-tho); in Italian, you use "gh" and "ch" (and when you want the "ch" sound in Italian you use "cc" before e and i, as in capuccino). The French, always marching to their own drummer, have the cedilla for softening an otherwise hard c, as in garçon, and the "gu" trick for hardening an otherwise soft g.

Mark Lipton

p.s. Where this gets interesting is when dealing with Germanic surnames in France. Does René Engel pronounce his last name as "ohn-JAY" or as "ENG-el"?
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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Tom Troiano » Mon Jun 17, 2013 5:42 pm

Piling on...

My friend who grew up near Avellino says "pork etta".
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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Mark Willstatter » Mon Jun 17, 2013 6:20 pm

Mark Lipton wrote:...in Italian, you use "gh" and "ch" (and when you want the "ch" sound in Italian you use "cc" before e and i, as in capuccino)


Modifying this a little, Mark, in Italian you don't need a double "c" before e and i to get a "ch" sound, one "c" does the trick. Double consonants like that mean you're supposed to elongate pronunciation of the consonant in question. Or so I thought I learned in my very limited experience in conversational Italian.
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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Hoke » Mon Jun 17, 2013 9:08 pm

to an extent, English:


Yeah, to the extent that English is actually a Germanic language, with a healthy lardening of Gaelic/Erse, and a hearty thickening of Gallic French, then straitjacketed into an iron corset of imposed Latin/Greco rules and regulations by academics, and serially spiced by additions of just about every language grouping through the entire world.

But that's what makes it so great, and so expressive. :P
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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Christina Georgina » Mon Jun 17, 2013 11:24 pm

More piling on....pork et ta. The accent on the next to the last syllable and both t's are sounded
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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Hoke » Mon Jun 17, 2013 11:44 pm

Christina Georgina wrote:More piling on....pork et ta. The accent on the next to the last syllable and both t's are sounded


Isn't Porchetta the name of the pig sweetheart in Pearls Before Swine?
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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Frank Deis » Mon Jun 17, 2013 11:50 pm

Mark Lipton wrote:
Frank Deis wrote:snip


Just to pile on to your excellent exposition, Frank, it's a generalizable rule for Latin languages including, to an extent, English: c and g take "hard" sounds when followed by a,o and U and "soft" sounds when followed by e and i. In Spanish, to get a hard g before e and i, you make it "gu" as in guitar, guerra, otherwise it's soft as in gelado (pronounced hay-lah-tho); in Italian, you use "gh" and "ch" (and when you want the "ch" sound in Italian you use "cc" before e and i, as in capuccino). The French, always marching to their own drummer, have the cedilla for softening an otherwise hard c, as in garçon, and the "gu" trick for hardening an otherwise soft g.

Mark Lipton

p.s. Where this gets interesting is when dealing with Germanic surnames in France. Does René Engel pronounce his last name as "ohn-JAY" or as "ENG-el"?


In France EVERYTHING is pronounced as if originally French. I'd have to look up the lake or the town -- but we were in France a few miles south of Geneva and I thought I would try pronouncing my name "DICE". No dice :shock: "Nous n'avons pas une chambre reservée..." I had to say it in French, probably also in Geneva as well.
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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Hoke » Tue Jun 18, 2013 12:03 am

In France EVERYTHING is pronounced as if originally French. I'd have to look up the lake or the town -- but we were in France a few miles south of Geneva and I thought I would try pronouncing my name "DICE". No dice "Nous n'avons pas une chambre reservée..." I had to say it in French, probably also in Geneva as well


Sounds like a scene in the Pink Panther with Inspector Clouseau, Frank. :lol:
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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Mike Filigenzi » Tue Jun 18, 2013 12:25 am

Hoke wrote:
Christina Georgina wrote:More piling on....pork et ta. The accent on the next to the last syllable and both t's are sounded


Isn't Porchetta the name of the pig sweetheart in Pearls Before Swine?


I think she's "Pigita", although I like your "Porchetta" better.
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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Frank Deis » Tue Jun 18, 2013 12:42 am

Mike Filigenzi wrote:
Hoke wrote:
Christina Georgina wrote:More piling on....pork et ta. The accent on the next to the last syllable and both t's are sounded


Isn't Porchetta the name of the pig sweetheart in Pearls Before Swine?


I think she's "Pigita", although I like your "Porchetta" better.


You're assuming he's reading the English version of Pearls Before Swine, right?

I haven't bought America Oggi! recently but I think they sometimes had comic strips...
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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Mark Lipton » Tue Jun 18, 2013 12:44 pm

Mark Willstatter wrote:
Mark Lipton wrote:...in Italian, you use "gh" and "ch" (and when you want the "ch" sound in Italian you use "cc" before e and i, as in capuccino)


Modifying this a little, Mark, in Italian you don't need a double "c" before e and i to get a "ch" sound, one "c" does the trick. Double consonants like that mean you're supposed to elongate pronunciation of the consonant in question. Or so I thought I learned in my very limited experience in conversational Italian.


You're absolutely right, Mark. The doubling of the cc gets you a pause, so it "cap-pooch-chino."

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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Mark Lipton » Tue Jun 18, 2013 12:49 pm

Frank Deis wrote:
Mark Lipton wrote:
p.s. Where this gets interesting is when dealing with Germanic surnames in France. Does René Engel pronounce his last name as "ohn-JAY" or as "ENG-el"?


In France EVERYTHING is pronounced as if originally French. I'd have to look up the lake or the town -- but we were in France a few miles south of Geneva and I thought I would try pronouncing my name "DICE". No dice :shock: "Nous n'avons pas une chambre reservée..." I had to say it in French, probably also in Geneva as well.


Frank, in my experience the French are quite diligent about pronouncing "foreign" names using the rules of the original language, so Möet is not pronounced "Mow-ay" but "Mow-et" because it's Dutch in origin (Huet apparently gets its nonstandard pronunciation from a local French dialect, though). In your case, they may not have recognized the name as Germanic in origin, or maybe they were simply being bloody-minded. :mrgreen:

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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by GeoCWeyer » Tue Jun 18, 2013 1:05 pm

I always thought "porketta" was an Iron Range creation.
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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Frank Deis » Tue Jun 18, 2013 1:46 pm

Mark Lipton wrote:
Frank Deis wrote:
Mark Lipton wrote:
p.s. Where this gets interesting is when dealing with Germanic surnames in France. Does René Engel pronounce his last name as "ohn-JAY" or as "ENG-el"?


In France EVERYTHING is pronounced as if originally French. I'd have to look up the lake or the town -- but we were in France a few miles south of Geneva and I thought I would try pronouncing my name "DICE". No dice :shock: "Nous n'avons pas une chambre reservée..." I had to say it in French, probably also in Geneva as well.


Frank, in my experience the French are quite diligent about pronouncing "foreign" names using the rules of the original language, so Möet is not pronounced "Mow-ay" but "Mow-et" because it's Dutch in origin (Huet apparently gets its nonstandard pronunciation from a local French dialect, though). In your case, they may not have recognized the name as Germanic in origin, or maybe they were simply being bloody-minded. :mrgreen:

Mark Lipton


Mark, does not correspond with my experience but I will have to keep my ears open for counter-examples. I'm working on coming up with a few but I think the gears are getting a little rusty. It's not a "proper name" but one thing that comes to mind -- when we went to Paris with the kids back in the 90's, we had to go to burger joints and it took me a while to decode "Ahm boor jay"

[edit] OK thought of another. My son was in a student exchange program -- he got to go to Paris in April. Some poor French kids got to come visit New Jersey in February. We drove them around a lot. At one point they said they really wanted to go to "Eeel Feee Zhay." ?? Tom pointed out that there was a Tommy Hilfiger outlet a few miles away and the French consider him quite snazzy.
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Re: How to pronounce 'porchetta'?

by Jenise » Tue Jun 18, 2013 9:59 pm

Thanks all for the language lessons. I made the most awesome pork-etta last weekend ;) and can't wait to do another.
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