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What is the correct sound for V?

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What is the correct sound for V?

Postby John L » Wed Aug 25, 2004 3:04 am

Such as in Verbum in Latin, does it sound like a W or a V in English?
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Postby benissimus » Wed Aug 25, 2004 3:59 am

it is always pronounced like an English W in Classical Latin.
flebile nescio quid queritur lyra, flebile lingua murmurat exanimis, respondent flebile ripae
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Postby John L » Wed Aug 25, 2004 1:37 pm

benissimus,

Thank you for your answer. Are there anymore distinct differences between the sounds of letters that are as obvious as the V sounding like a a W? I can see I need a good reliable grammar course made simple.
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Postby Episcopus » Wed Aug 25, 2004 1:57 pm

It is like w but not so clear. That's to say don't hurt your ears by bringing your lips too close together for a very distinguishable W, it's relaxed. Otherwise you will sound like British boarding school girls.
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Postby Timothy » Wed Aug 25, 2004 4:32 pm

John L wrote:benissimus,

Thank you for your answer. Are there anymore distinct differences between the sounds of letters that are as obvious as the V sounding like a a W? I can see I need a good reliable grammar course made simple.


Yes, there are a few.

Strong recommendation: Look at sections 1-10 of the Beginner's Latin by D'Oooge text, or A+G New Latin Grammer

e.g. urbs = urps. The final -m of words is nasalized. The sound of an in anchora is nasalized.

HTH

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Postby classicalclarinet » Wed Aug 25, 2004 9:25 pm

The final -m of words is nasalized.


Exactly how much is it nasalized? An old-ish tape I got from the library that teaches poetry reading says those really nasalized, like French. That seemed too much to me, since the -m words sounded distinctly different that others.
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Postby Timothy » Thu Aug 26, 2004 12:59 am

classicalclarinet wrote:Exactly how much is it nasalized? An old-ish tape I got from the library that teaches poetry reading says those really nasalized, like French. That seemed too much to me, since the -m words sounded distinctly different that others.


The French nasalization is accurate, though. But it isn’t a French accent. Let me try to explain it. I’m studying this rather closely at the moment. However, I’m not a linguistic expert and am confident that the more knowledgeable won’t let me stray too far a field.

The first example is the word: proelium, battle

A traditional (as opposed to classic) pronunciation would be like “proy-lee-um”. If you say this correctly then your lips will be pressed together at the end of the word, just as they would if you said the word “mum”. Final ‘m’ here has its full sound.

The nasalization comes when you don’t close the lips on the final ‘m’ but leave them open. You will naturally nasalize the sound and get something like, “proy-lee-uooo”.

The second example is one I believe has been mentioned in another thread here; it’s a line from the Aenid, (line 3, I believe), that uses multum ille,

“…Laviniaque venit
litora, multum ille et terries iactus et alto…”

Here the final –m is nasalized as well. The traditional pronunciation of multum is like “mult-UM”. When it is nasalized with the following vowel they blend together so that the full m nearly drops out and you get “mult-U-ill-ey”

English has some nasalized sounds, like anchor, from the Latin ancora, which shows how the nasalization persists. English also have nasalized endings, as in sing.

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Postby Meowth » Sat Aug 28, 2004 8:18 pm

benissimus wrote:it is always pronounced like an English W in Classical Latin.



then, in modern latin, i should pronounce it as a v ?

or as an u ?

w = soft u in classical latin, right ?
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Postby classicalclarinet » Sat Aug 28, 2004 9:37 pm

Well, that depends.. if you like to confuse your friends, say "Weni, Widi, Wici" But if you want to be understood, "Veni, Vidi, Vici"
Ecclesistical Pronounciation treats 'v' as English I think.

I don't believe that there exists the letter 'w' in classical latin.
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Postby Meowth » Sun Aug 29, 2004 2:44 am

classicalclarinet wrote:Well, that depends.. if you like to confuse your friends, say "Weni, Widi, Wici" But if you want to be understood, "Veni, Vidi, Vici"
Ecclesistical Pronounciation treats 'v' as English I think.

I don't believe that there exists the letter 'w' in classical latin.




not the letter but the sound, doesn't it ?


i'm getting confused... i always thought it's like an "u" or soft "w" to pronounce "v"
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Postby Timothy » Sun Aug 29, 2004 6:15 am

Meowth wrote:not the letter but the sound, doesn't it ?


yes. The letter 'w' did not exist but the sound did.

Meowth wrote:i'm getting confused... i always thought it's like an "u" or soft "w" to pronounce "v"


Classical: say 'W" for all 'V's

The confusion comes from medival (and onwards) changes. I can't tell you the best way to handle that because I think it's a mish-mash of confusion.

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