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Home :: Archive :: 2001 :: February ::
Re: Pronouncing Faustus
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.0393  Friday, 16 February 2001

From:           Brother Anthony <
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Date:           Friday, 16 Feb 2001 11:29:27 +0900
Subject: 12.0354 Pronouncing Faustus
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.0354 Pronouncing Faustus

I would like to thank all who took the trouble to reply, privately and
to the list, to my question about the pronunciation of Faustus's name.
Actually, such a question is only the tip of the iceberg. Korea has its
own alphabet and I am often asked how the name of this or that scholar
should be transcribed. In the case of American scholars, I often have to
plead ignorance, since there is no way of knowing if they have retained
the original European pronunciation or if they have 'americanized' it.
For Faustus, it seems clear that today the German-style 'ow'
pronunciation is almost universal but that some people have retained (or
re-invented) the older English pronunciation (as in 'august'). At first
I assumed an influence from Goethe but I wonder too if there could be an
effect of the change in the pronunciation of standard Latin in schools
(when did it happen?) whereby 'Augustus' is now pronounced with an
initial 'ow' sound in school but (in my memories) like August when the
Christmas story from St. Luke's Gospel is being read in churches. How is
'Augustine' faring in all this? How are scholars pronouncing him, I
wonder? I have to be careful in Korea not to use a diphthong in speaking
Plato(n)'s name ...

Br Anthony (An Sonjae)
Sogang University, Seoul, Korea

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