More off-topic drivel: Re: Language and English

From: Hans Franke <>
Date: Mon Jan 7 13:10:36 2002

> > > > A Plan for the Improvement of English Spelling
> > > > by Mark Twain

> > Jep. What I like most is that similar aproaches are available to German,
> > eliminateing most letters ... keep in mind that German has already a mostly
> > phonetic spelling ... And the replacements are likewise selected.

> That may be so, but I have never been able to understand how Muenchen(?)
> ever got to be translated to Munich. Obviously, there are some
> pronounciation differences that I am missing!

It's not about Pronounciation, but rather history. For one thing,
there is at least a dozend named for Munich

Standard German: Muenchen (ue = umlaut u)
Bavarian: Minga (Note, we got our own name :)
Latin: Monacensis
Englich: Munich
French: Munich (Pronounciation differs dramaticly from English)
Italian: Monaco
Turkish: Munih (umlaut dots above the u and no dot on the i)
Czech: Mnichow (Most slavic languages variy here only the spelling)
Hungarian .... And a lot more I don't remember at the moment.

Since the oldest _known_ part is connected to a monk settlement, basicly
all the names are variations thereof - the official founding date is 1158,
but that's only the oldest known text to name the city. Foundations tell
that the oldest known settlements are at least 4 to 7 hundred years older.

So take some 1000 years of history of a place along known trade routes,
and people wll tell about the place and start to adaptr the name in their
own language.

And at least for the French Name, it's just taken from Muncih coins - the
Name of the City in the 12th century, as used is said docunent was Munichen.
When on coins space for lettes was even more rare than bytes on earyl computers,
so they often droped letters. For the Englisch, I assume they just took the
French spelling and changed the pronounciation over the years (as the french
did also).

So after all, it's no translation, just a sign of changes over the years.
Today we belive way to often that things like names are static and have to
be the same everywhere. As for myself, I'm proud to live in a city well
known to lots of people to give names of their own.


VCF Europa 3.0 am 27./28. April 2002 in Muenchen
Received on Mon Jan 07 2002 - 13:10:36 GMT

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