Date: Tue, 25 Jun 1996 17:05:25 -0500 From: "Thomas J. Creswell" Subject: Fwd: Re: Chicago pronc -- [ From: Thomas J. Creswell * EMC.Ver #2.5.02 ] -- Beth Simon, I goofed and responded to your query about the pronunciation of Chicago directly to you. I meant to post it on ads-l. Herewith Tom Creswell ------- FORWARD, Original message follows ------- > Date: Monday, 24-Jun-96 11:52 AM > > From: Thomas J. Creswell \ Internet: (creswell[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE] > To: simon[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]CVAX.IPFW.INDIANA.EDU \ Internet: (simon[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]cvax.ipfw.indiana. edu) > > Subject: Re: Chicago pronc > > Beth, > > The pronunciation of _Chicago_ like that of many place names, is subject to a > number of variations. > > 1. The initial consonant cluster is either "ch" as in _chew_ or "sh" as in > _shoo_. The first Mayor Daley (Richard J.) was a consistent "ch" pronouncer, > as were many working class people of Irish origin in his generation. For > instance, a Chicago cop would most likely be a "ch" pronouncer. Some of the > descendants of this group preserve this initial sound. > > 2. The first syllable vowel may be either like the _i_ in _hit_, or a schwa. > > 3. The second syllable vowel varies from "open o" as in _law_ and a short "a" > as in _cat_. In this syllable, many gradations occur, anything between the two > extremes. Old time native Chicagoans usually have the open o vowel, unless > they come from a northwest side neighborhood settled by Swedes and Germans .. > Long time residents, whether white, African American, or Hispanic have a strong > tendency to the _aw_ sound. Newer arrivals to the city tend toward the short > "a" sound. > > 4. The initial consonant of the second syllable is, in some pronunciations, > voiced, so that it sounds, in rapid speech like a hard g > rather than a k. The reason for this is obvious--preceding and following > voicing. > > 5. The final vowel varies between a long o as in _so_ or _go_ and a schwa > sound. Again, the first Mayor Daley had the schwa sound for this vowel. > > No. You are not alone in the "sh" initial consonant sound. I, and many others > share it with you. > > Tom Creswell ------- FORWARD, End of original message -------