Abbreviations and acronyms

Discussion in 'Ελληνικά (Greek)' started by adber010, Feb 22, 2013.

  1. adber010 Senior Member

    Hello again!

    I'm a bit unsure about the pronunciation of abbreviations and acronyms. I know that some of them are pronounced as regular words like ΑΕΠ, ΠΑΣΟΚ and ΗΠΑ (like "είπα"). But sometimes it is a bit unclear whether you say the name of the letter "κάππα κάππα έψιλον" or add -ού to the consonant "κου κου ε" (does this applies to every consonant btw?). For example, Ε.Σ.Σ.Δ, is it "ε σου σου δου"??

  2. Perseas Senior Member


    KKE is pronounced either "κάππα κάππα έψιλον" (more formal) or "κου κου ε" (more informal).
    As far as I know, ΕΣΣΔ was officially read as : "Ένωση Σοβιετικών Σοσιαλιστικών Δημοκρατιών" (or even "Σοβιετική Ένωση" = "Soviet Union"). I don't remember having ever heard "εσσδ" or something else. That said, I can imagine people having said "ε σου σου δου" at colloquial.
    ΔΝT (IMF) in informal situations is heard "δου νου του", otherwise "Διεθνές Νομισματικό Ταμείο" (or "δελτα νι ταυ").
    ΠΣΚ (που σου κου) is a colloquial way to say "Παρασκευή-Σάββατο-Κυριακή".
    Well, to put it in a nutshell, the formal way is to say the name of the letter or the word that the letter represents, whereas in informal situations we can, say, improvise :).
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2013
  3. Tassos

    Tassos Senior Member

    If we were to make a rule it would be:

    1) If the acronym is easy to pronounce (according to our pronounciation rules) then it is pronounced "like a word" by everyone even in (semi)formal situations like a TV news journal or a talk-show.
    2) If the acronym is difficult or impossible to pronounce then we follow what Perseas wrote (i.e. say the letters or the words in formal situations and the "-ού rule" for informal situations and everyday speech). If you are Greek you cannot for the life of you pronounce ΕΣΣΔ, ΚΚΕ or ΔΝΤ "straight" as they are written.

    2 more things to consider

    - We can even mix these two rules. There is a student organisation affiliated to the New Democracy party called ΔΑΠ-ΝΔΦΚ. As you can see, the first half is easy to say so it is pronounced according to (1) and the second is pronounced according to (2). And the result is "δαπ νου-δου-φου-κου"
    - For many years people making acronyms in Greece (for political parties, products etc) deliberately "cut" the words in a way to make the resulting acronym fall into case (1).

    Finally yes, all the consonants (including the doubles) can and will take -ού.
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2013
  4. adber010 Senior Member

    Thanks guys! Thats plenty:)

    All the best!
  5. adber010 Senior Member

    How about ΜΜΕ btw? Μου μου ε?
  6. Perseas Senior Member

    I would say μι μι έψιλον, but I could imagine someone saying your version too.
  7. adber010 Senior Member

    Great! Realized however that you probably just say μίντια in daily conversation, right?
  8. Perseas Senior Member

    I would say that μίντια has not been "established" yet in daily conversations. I admit though that journalists, talk-show hosts etc use μίντια very often. I still say: Μέσα Μαζικής Επικοινωνίας / Ενημέρωσης.
  9. Tassos

    Tassos Senior Member

    I'd say it's gaining ground. 5 years ago I hated using/hearing that word in a daily conversation, I considered it a pretentious invention of cheap journalism. But I have to admit that recenlty I've used it/heard it several times. A good alternative, if Μέσα Μαζικής Επικοινωνίας / Ενημέρωσης is too hard for you, is to simply say Μέσα or τα Μέσα.
  10. Perseas Senior Member

    Yes, I don't doubt it may be so. Maybe it's time to add μίντια in my active vocabulary.
  11. Andrious Senior Member

    I think we say Μι Μι Ε quite often as well.
  12. I remember when I heard σου-κου for the first time. I couldn't figure it out and needed to ask what it meant. Σ-Κ - σαββατοκύριακο. :)

    Only then I figured out that ου is being added when vocalizing abbreviations. (By that time I only knew κου-κου-ε).

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