Philip Newton (pne) wrote,
Philip Newton

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Familiarity with other languages FTW: Dincbas

Last night when I went shopping, I saw that the cashier’s nametag listed her name as “Frau Dincbas”.

I made a guess that this was a Turkish name and wondered what the most likely actual letters were and figured that “Dinçbaş” sounded like the most likely Turkish name to me, so I asked her how she pronounced her name—/dɪnʧbaʃ/?

She said yes—and that I was “one of the first” to get it right at the first try. (I presume most people try something along the lines of /diŋkbas/ first.)

(Now that I think about it, I wonder whether it’s Dinçbaş or Dınçbaş. Though I expect the Germanised pronunciation of both would be identical. And the former seems more likely to me, at a wild guess, even though it violates vowel harmony; it feels like a compound word to me, though I don’t recognise either component.)

While googling to try to confirm the spelling, I see a number of “Dinçbas” as well: neither ASCII nor proper Turkish spelling, but—I suppose—a Latin-1 compromise. I wonder whether that’s considered a better or worse approximation than “Dincbas” by bearers of the name.

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