Date: Wed, 12 Nov 1997 20:24:23 -0500 From: "Barry A. Popik" Subject: St. Lewis Donald Lance is lecturing soon on the pronunciation and meaning of "Missouri." Here's a small grouping on "St. Louis.". --------------------------------------------------- Was something official passed in 1918? This is from the Milwaukee Journal, 19 April 1918, pg. 16, col. 3: "ST. LEWIS" St. Louis, through its Chamber of Commerce, has decided how its own name should be pronounced. It should, according to this edict of "self-determination," be broadly anglicized and called "St. Lewis." "St. Louis" is officially tabooed. There is good sense in this grave decree. English-speaking peoples anglicize the names of important cities in foreign countries, and there is no reason why they should retain foreign pronunciations for cities of their own. No one with good sense calls Paris "Paree." We say "Rome" instead of "Roma," "Vienna" instead of "Wien," "Naples" instead of "Napoli," "The Hague" instead of "Den Haag," "Brussels" instead of "Bruxzelles," "Copenhagen" instead of "Kjobenhavn." Charity of this kind surely should begin at home. "St. Louis" is, indeed, no more than conscious or unconscious affectation. "St. Lewis" is the right way, in English, to pronounce the name of an American city spelt "S-a-i-n-t L-o-u-i-s."--Cleveland Plain Dealer. ---------------------------------------------------------------- Cartoon by Ed Hughes in the New York Evening Mail, 31 August 1922, Pg. 12, cols. 3-7. The headline is: "They'll Call It St. Lose Next--by Ed Hughes." In the righthand corner is "The R. R. stations have made the change out St. Louis." A railroad station is shown, with the location listed as "St. Blooie." To the left of this, a giant N. Y. Giant is kicking a child's house of cards (the losing St. Louis Cardinals). In the upper righthand corner, "The Yanks" cooks up "St. Blooie Hash," which is "Browned in the Pan!" (St. Louis Browns). ---------------------------------------------------------------- This--before both of the above--is from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, "Answers to Queries," 11 February 1917, pg. 2, col. 6: F. B. J.--Pronunciation of St. Louis has not been fixed by law. Western people say Saint Loois; Eastern, Saint Loo-ee; Frenchmen, San Loo-ee; Germans could say St. Ludwig. "Saint Looey" was the pronunciation used in the Masque of St. Louis, the symbolic afterpiece of the Pageant in Forest Park, May 23-31, 1914. Percy MacKaye, writer of the Masque, said the name of St. Louis would be shouted by many voices in the latter part of the Masque, as the nations of the world, and the other cities of America, hailed the knightly figure representing this city. These shouts should sound over the hillside in the largest possible volume and for that prupose he decided that it would not do to have an "s" sound on the end of the word. Although the poet-dramatist did not mention it, a precedent for his choice of the "Looey" pronunciation was set by the writer of a popular song of World's Fair days. The song was entitled, "Meet Me in St. Louis, Louis," and a footnote instructed the singer that "Louis" should in both cases be pronounced "Looey." Judy Garland still won't meet me--Saint Looey, Mizzourah, wherever it is.