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CHAT: the consonant QUH

From:Lars Henrik Mathiesen <thorinn@...>
Date:Wednesday, December 8, 1999, 9:39
> Date: Wed, 8 Dec 1999 17:48:43 +1300 > From: andrew <hobbit@...>
> [...] the ficticious arch-Tory Francis Urquhart. [...]
And that name has one of the weirder regular spellings I've met. IIRC, it comes from Scots, where they used to have (and perhaps still have) phonemic aspiration of stops. One such stop was the labialized velar, spelled <qu> when not aspirated. So where does a rational person put the <h> to denote aspiration --- Urqhuart or Urquhart? Both are weird, but they chose the latter. (Very possibly because because printers at the time had many more <qu> types than single <q>s and <u>s in their cases). To me the name looks like it should have three syllables, but it never did. The current English pronunciation is something like /3:k3d/, isn't it? Lars Mathiesen (U of Copenhagen CS Dep) <thorinn@...> (Humour NOT marked)