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Starkaryan

Character Name Pronunciations

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Okay, this is probably pretty lame, but I'm curious as to how you guys hear the names when you're reading the books. I've wondered if I'm pronouncing the names differently than GRRM intended and will hear different sounding names *when* the HBO series begins...

So anyway...

Catelyn: I've always read it "Kate-lynn" but I've often wondered if it's supposed to be "Cat-a-lynn"

Daenerys: I hear "D'Neris" but see the "ae" and wonder if it's "Day-neris," which, to me, sounds awkward...

Gendry: I hear it "Jendry" like the soft g in "gentlemen", but "Genna (Lannister)" is spelled similarly and I hear her name with a hard g as in "gone"

Rickon: I primarily hear it "Rick-on" but have also heard it with a long i as in "eye"

Tyrion: I see this as "Tih-rion" but his father's name, which is spelled quite similarly, "Tywin," sounds to me to have a long i as in "eye"

Jalabhar Xho and Xaro Xhoan Daxos: This is where I get most confused. Rather than the "ks" sound, I tend to read the x in these names like the Chinese and Portuguese pronunciations of x being a "sh" sound. Like Jalabhar Sho and Sharo Shoan Dashos rather than the x sounds in Xerxes: "Zerksees". It seems to me to flow better than "Jalabhar Kso" or "Ksaro Ksoan Daksos"

Lyanna: I always read it "Lee-ah-na" but it could be a long i "Lie-anna"

Myrcella: I hear it as Mirsella rather than a long i, which, again, would be awkward.

Cersei: I hear "Ser-see" rather than the spelling suggests "Ser-say"

Lollys and Falyse and Selyse: do they all rhyme? Falyse and Selyse especially... are they like "Faleece" and "Seleece"? That's how I hear them...

Davos: I read it "Dah-vos" but it could be "Dave-os"

Lysa: I see "Lisa", not "Liza" with a long i

Thoros of Myr: I hear the country sounding like "Mer" but when it talks of things like the Myrish man or the Myrish lace, I hear "My-rish"...

Lame, I know. What do you think?

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My pronunciations:

Catelyn: Kat-lin

Daenerys: Day-nair-rees

Gendry: Jen-dree

Genna: Jenn-a

Rickon: Rick-on

Tyrion: Tih-ree-on

Tywin: Tie-win

Jalabhar Xho: Jal-ab-har Zo

Xaro Xhoan Daxos: Zar-o Zo-an Dax-os

Lyanna: Lie-anna

Myrcella: Mur-kell-a

Cersei: Kur-see (I'm one of the few people who pronounce her name with a hard 'c')

Lollys: Loll-ease

Falyse: Fal-ease

Selyse: Sel-ease

Davos: Dah-vos

Lysa: Lee-sa

Thoros of Myr: Thor-os of Mur

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My one weird pronounciation is:

Baratheon: Bara-THORN

It just sounds better to me. Baratheon sounds silly, imo.

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Catelyn: I used to say KAYT-lin but I think GRRM says KAT-uh-lin so I switched.

Daenerys: Day-NAIR-iss

Gendry: JEN-dree

Rickon: RICK-un

Tyrion: TEAR-ree-un

Jalabhar Xho and Xaro Xhoan Daxos: Zho and I don't even try the second one

Lyanna: Lee-AH-nuh

Myrcella: Mirr-SELL-uh

Cersei: SER-say

Lollys and Falyse and Selyse: LOL-iss, Fa-LEEZ, Se-LEEZ

Davos: DAH-vos

Lysa: LIE-sa (not -za)

Thoros of Myr: MIRR (rhymes with the first syllable of "lyric"), or sometimes like the word "mere"

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My only odd one : Rickon = "Rye-Kon" with a hard K.

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I know it's most likely inaccurate but I pronounce the three generations of Lannister men differently:

Tytos: TIE-tos

Tywin: TOOwin

Tyrion: TIH-ree-un

(And Tygett: TIGett, Tyrek: TIRek)

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My only odd one : Rickon = "Rye-Kon" with a hard K.

ditto

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Rie-kon sounds kind of science fiction to me. Like he should be a Doctor Who villian. Or the planet of origin of a Doctor Who villain.

Xaro Xhoan Daxos: I treat xh like zh (the French j, or the sound at the end of mirage and garage), but regular x follows English rules for x: it makes a z sound at the beginning of the word, but a ks sound in the middle. So "Zaro ZHoan Daksos." Xhoan has two syllables. Jalabhar Xho follows the same rule, "zho."

Honestly, with different people (Martin, various audiobook readers, friends) pronouncing names differently, I don't have any fixed pronunciation for a lot of the names. For instance, I switch back and forth between DuhNAIRis, DayNAIRis, DANeris and DAYneris for Daenarys (and DAY-nee/Danny for Dany), and sir-see and sair-say for Cersei. And I say Myr like "mere" but Myrish rhymes with Irish. It's a mess. And although I've been able to switch the way I hear some names, like Tyrion (from Tie-REE-on to TEER-i-on, which is one of those rare names that most people seem to agree on) and Jaime (from the spanish pronounciation of the name to the English version, which I've more often seen spelled Jamie), I still can't get my mind to read Euron as anything other than a homophone of urine.

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I've always pronounced Cersei like in Italian..."Chersei", doesn't seem to be a very common pronunciation.

I try not to pronounce things "English" as far as I can, because none of these feel Englishish enough.

I pronounce Xho like "kho", I read the X as the greek letter chi

Arya and Sansa are of Indian origin, so I pronounce them aaryaah, sa(nasal)saa

the Reach reminds me of France, so I pronounce the names from these as in French

Some of the names though have one to one correspondences with English like Robert, Jon, Joffrey (Geoffrey), so I pronounce them as in English. Of course you need to pronounce the Dokhtari names like Mongolian, and the free cities like Arabic and so on.

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Rie-kon sounds kind of science fiction to me. Like he should be a Doctor Who villian. Or the planet of origin of a Doctor Who villain.

Hilariously enough, I've always tended to visualise Davos as Davros.

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Warning: I pronouce things very strangly.

Here it goes...

Catelyn: Kate-Lyn

Daenerys: Dany-Rees

Gendry: Gen-dree

Tyrion: Tie-Ron

Tywin: Tie-Win

Jalabhar Xho: Jail-Bar-Zow

Lyanna: Lee-ahn-ah

Cersei: Ser-See

Thoros of Myr: Thigh-Rose

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catelyn= kate-lin

daenerys= duh-near-is

jaime= hi-mee (as in the spanish pronunciation)

tywin= ti-win (short i)

cersie= cessie (silent r)

xaro xhoan daxos= zaaro zoan daksos

jalabhar xho= jalabar zo

victarion= vik-tori-un (long o)

lyanna= li-anna (short i)

thoros of myr= thor-us of meer

ygritte= eeg-ruht

targaryen= targ-uh-ryan

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Okay, my turn:

Starks:

Catelyn: Kate-Lynn

Rickon: Rick-Uhn

Lannisters:

Jaime: Jay-mee

Cersei: Sir-say

Tywin: Tie-win

Tyrion: Tie-ree-uhn

Targaryens:

Aerys: Air-us

Rhaella: Ray-luh

Rhaegar: Ray-gar

Viserys: Vis-uh-russ

Daenerys: Day-nair-us and Dany is Day-nee

Others:

Davos: Day-vos

Lysa: Lee-sa (Or Lisa, like the English name)

Edmure: Ed-mure

Melisandre: Mel-uh-sawn-dra

Bronn: Same as "brawn"

Brienne: Bree-inn

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Daenerys : usually Day-NAIR-iss, sometimes Duh-NAIR-iss slips in

Dany: just like the name Danny

As the Engish Y can be different variants (usually) of the letter (usually) I, I switch the Y sound depending on the name and on what sounds best outloud... Lie-AH-na for Lyanna but LEE-sa for Lysa

Tyrion : TIRR-ree-inn

Tywin : TIWW-winn, even the way it sounds out loud (sounds like "children" said with a sort of speech impediment), it has always sounded better in my head

Lollys: LOLL-iss (homophone of "lawless")

Falyse : FALL-iss - short, nasal a, as in apple

Selyse : Sell-EES or SES-sle (misread the name wrong at first and can't get the old version totally out of my head)

Thoros of Myr : THOR-iss of Mirr

Eddard : Edd-erd (just like Edward, without the w)

Benjen : Binn-jeen

Rickon : RICK-inn

Xaro Xhoan Daxos, etc : never had a clue how to pronounce these, so I loosely stick with either a Z or a KS sound, depending on what sounded best for whichever name - Xaro Xhoan Daxos for example is, for me, ZAH-roh ZOH-inn/ZOHN DACK-sohs ("DACK" would rhyme with Jack). Thanks a lot to the poster of this theme about the Chinese and Portuguese (?) version of X's pronunciations, though. Though set in a fictional world, GRRM is probably basing it somehow on real pronunciations of what is, I'll guess, Chinese. You made things a lot more easy for me. :)

Hodor : can't help but call him hohr-dohr, somehow that extra R just got stuck in there

Gendry: GINN-dree

Victarion: Vick-TAHR-ree-(y)inn

Davos : DAV-ohs (again short, nasal a, as in apple)

Genna : JINN-aBrienne : Bree-ANNE

Viserys : VISS-sair-eez

Aerys: just like the God Ares (AIR-eez)

Aegon : AY-'gone'

(Bronze) Yohn : rhymes with Dawn

Waymar : 'WHY'-mahr

Gregor Clegane : 'GRAY'-'gore' 'Clay'-GAHN

Illyrio Mopatis : Ill-LEAR-ree-oh MOH-pah-tiss

Jaqen H'ghar : Jack-KEEN Hah-GAR

Qyburn : Kibb-'burn'

Nymeria - Nimm-MAIR-reea

Rickard (Stark) : RICK-erd

Oddly this one has yet to be mentioned...

Damphair: DAMP-Pfair

And of course R'hllor : Roh-LORE (Guess I stole that one from Arya ;) )

Mag Mar Tun Doh Weg, King of the Giants : Mahg Mahr Toon Doe Vaykh (kh, gluttural k with no eng. parallel) Went with the Germanic sound with this one, always saw a parallel between the Wildlings/Peoples of the North and the People of Westeros with the early Germanic tribes and Romans

Targaryen : TAR-gahr-yinn (second r is soft, almost not there sometimes, almost like TAR-guh-yinn)

Lannister : (LAN-iss-ter) LAN like "land" Sometimes I accidently call is Lancaster, just bc it's so similar

Baratheon : 'Bear'-'RATH'-thee-awn ("th" as in both, not as in those)

Stark : though sometimes like the English word, actually usually like Shtark (this is also the German word for "powerful". As I started this series in Germany, it just stuck)

Martell and Tyrell: Mar-TELL and Tirr-RELL

Dondarrion : Dawn-'DARE'-ree-inn

Maester: 'MY'-ster

Khaleesi : Kah-LEE-see or Kah-lee-'SIGH' (first a, again like apple)

Khalasar (? - forgive spelling error) Kal-leh-SAHR...

but Khal : Kahl

Westeros : West-TAIR-ohs

Lys : homophone of "lease"

Ghis : Ghees (hard g)

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Oddly this one has yet to be mentioned...

Damphair: DAMP-Pfair

And that's one where—to the extent that such a pronouncement makes sense in the first place—you're wrong. Damphair is a nickname, indicating the degree of moisture found in the priest's luxurious mane. Say it with me: Aeron has damp hair.

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Catelyn: Cat-uh-lin

Daenerys: Day-nuh-ris

Gendry: Jen-dree

Genna: Jenn-a

Rickon: Rick-on

Tyrion: Tih-ree-on

Tywin: Tih-win

Jalabhar Xho: Jal-Ab-Har- Xo

Xaro Xhoan Daxos: Xah-ro Xoan (loan with an X) Dax-os (dax like axe with a D in front of it)

Lyanna: Lie-anna

Myrcella: Mir-Cell-ah

Cersei: Sir-See

Lollys: Lol-lis

Falyse: Fal-ease

Selyse: Sel-ease

Davos: Dah-vos

Lysa: Lee-sa

Thoros of Myr: Thor-os of Mir

Oddly this one has yet to be mentioned...

Damphair: DAMP-Pfair

Somehow (silly as I am) i've read this as "dam-fair" for a long time.. totally read over it for some reason ;(

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And that's one where—to the extent that such a pronouncement makes sense in the first place—you're wrong. Damphair is a nickname, indicating the degree of moisture found in the priest's luxurious mane. Say it with me: Aeron has damp hair.

I did realise what the name implide. But "Damp Hair" seemed, I don't know, a bit corny to me for some reason, as damp as his hair may be ;) I played with the name breifly and (yeah, I briefly read dam-fair too lol) decided that the 'pf' made it sound much more interesting and exotic.

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I usually refuse to pronounce obviously non-English names in English way, so my pronounciation of Martinworld "Valyrian" names differs from standard native English speaker pronucuation. The most obvios differences would be pronouncing "ae" as German ä and "ei" as two syllables - Aegon = Ägon and Cersei = Ser-seh-ee. I am also strongly convinced that Davos = Dah-vos, not Day-vos. I don't go so far as most readers in my country who pronounce Jon as Yon, though. I even heard several times Jaime pronounced as French word "jamais" :wideeyed: . I have always read those an native Westerosi, and therefore English names. OTOH, Brienne and Ygritte are obviously French sounding names, so last "e" simply must be mute for me. By extension, the same goes for Arianne, Alysanne etc.

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I struggle with some but others not so much. My two friends I got involved in the series seem to struggle MUCH more then I do with names (my roomate can't tell the difference beetween Twyin and Tyrion come on)

ANYHOW this is how I see them (BTW I'm bad at this so, sorry in advance lol):

Catelyn: "Kate-lynn" and "Cat-a-lynn" lol I flip flop :/

Daenerys: Duh-Nairy-is could be way off though

Gendry: Jendry

Rickon: Rick-on

Tyrion: Tear-e-in

Jalabhar Xho and Xaro Xhoan Daxos: lol I don't even try

Lyanna: Lee-ah-na

Myrcella: Mirsella

Cersei: Ser-see

Davos: Dave-os

Lysa: Lisa

Thoros of Myr: For Myr I read Meer

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