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How to say: J. Kellenberger

Host Host | 11:11 UK time, Wednesday, 9 August 2006

A guide to words and names in the news, from Martha Figueroa-Clark of the BBC Pronunciation Unit.

"Today's pronunciation is for the Head of the International Committee of the Red Cross, Jakob Kellenberger - a Swiss national with a German name.

"It is pronounced YAA-kop KELL-uhn-bair-guhr (-air as in 'hair'; -g as in 'get'). This pronunciation was given to us by the Swiss Embassy."

(Click here for a guide to phonetic pronunciations (PDF).)


Excellent. As a swiss, I'd like to add that the first two "E"s in Kellenberger are pronounced like the ones in "said", the last two more like in "nerd".

Very pleased to see who posted this, since I've wondered for years how to pronounce part of this name, and maybe now I will learn. Fig-you-air-oh-uh, or maybe the simpler Fig-air-whah? And while we're at it: is it Clark as in bark or Clark as in perk? Or wait, no, I have that one the wrong way round, with all due apologies from this Swiss-American.

I appreciate the blog, though the pronunciation helps can be a little confusing for us all-rhotic-all-the-time American English speakers.

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