Georgian: დემნა გვასალია / Demna Gvasalia

Rainbowlight

Senior Member
Spanish
Hello everyone,

First of all, I apologize for not being able to write these message in Georgian, as I don't speak the language.

I would like to have an accurate pronunciation of the name and surname of Demna Gvasalia, a fashion designer of Georgian origin.

I would also like to know if both the name and surname actually mean something in Georgian.

Any help would be much appreciated. Thank you in advance! : )
 
  • JamessCrust

    New Member
    English
    Hello there! If you put Demna Gvasalia in Google Translate and click the sound option it will read the name out loud 99% precisely. Demna Gvasalia is pretty easy and straightforward to read as compared to many other Georgian names :)

    I don't think either the name or the surname mean anything. Demna is a Georgian name, informal version of Demetrius (Demetrius II of Georgia - Wikipedia). Gvasalia is also Georgian, particularly of Megrelian origin (Mingrelians - Wikipedia).
     

    green_muse

    Senior Member
    Russian
    Hi,
    I'm glad that there is a post on Georgian.
    The pronunciation is very straightforward, the same as written. The stress is on the first syllable: DEmna GvAsalia. Make sure to pronounce all the letters. "ia" in Gvasalia is not similar to the Spanish diphthong.
    They don't have a particular meaning.
    I hope it helps. I agree with the comment above too.
     

    winenous

    Senior Member
    English - British
    Last edited:

    winenous

    Senior Member
    English - British
    Hello there! If you put Demna Gvasalia in Google Translate and click the sound option it will read the name out loud 99% precisely.
    That seems to work for many languages, but I cannot get Google Translate to pronounce Georgian for me, neither on my Android app nor Windows webpage. Could you post instructions, or a screenshot of where to click, as I think it could be sometimes handy? Thanks
     

    Rainbowlight

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    Hello there! If you put Demna Gvasalia in Google Translate and click the sound option it will read the name out loud 99% precisely. Demna Gvasalia is pretty easy and straightforward to read as compared to many other Georgian names :)

    I don't think either the name or the surname mean anything. Demna is a Georgian name, informal version of Demetrius (Demetrius II of Georgia - Wikipedia). Gvasalia is also Georgian, particularly of Megrelian origin (Mingrelians - Wikipedia).
    Hello there! If you put Demna Gvasalia in Google Translate and click the sound option it will read the name out loud 99% precisely. Demna Gvasalia is pretty easy and straightforward to read as compared to many other Georgian names :)

    I don't think either the name or the surname mean anything. Demna is a Georgian name, informal version of Demetrius (Demetrius II of Georgia - Wikipedia). Gvasalia is also Georgian, particularly of Megrelian origin (Mingrelians - Wikipedia).
    Thank you so much! Alas, the pronunciation Google Translate is, I'm afraid, terribly wrong. However, I have found a native pronunciation in Forvo which sounds pretty much like the genuine article. Thank you anyway. : )
     

    Rainbowlight

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    Hi,
    I'm glad that there is a post on Georgian.
    The pronunciation is very straightforward, the same as written. The stress is on the first syllable: DEmna GvAsalia. Make sure to pronounce all the letters. "ia" in Gvasalia is not similar to the Spanish diphthong.
    They don't have a particular meaning.
    I hope it helps. I agree with the comment above too.
    I have actually listened to a native pronunciation and it basically sounds like GO-SA-LÍ-A. Stress is in the penultimate syllable, the one which I've marked with an acute accent.
    The pronunciation can be found here: დემნა გვასალია pronunciation: How to pronounce დემნა გვასალია in Georgian
    It is pronounced by a female speaker from Georgia.
     

    Rainbowlight

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    Thank you so much! Alas, the pronunciation Google Translate is, I'm afraid, terribly wrong. However, I have found a native pronunciation in Forvo which sounds pretty much like the genuine article. Thank you anyway. : )
    Forvo gives the pronunciation
    დემნა გვასალია pronunciation: How to pronounce დემნა გვასალია in Georgian

    It is true that the first syllable of Georgian words often carries more stress, as @green_muse says, but differences in stress are usually not very marked. Note also that is sometimes pronounced like an English "v" and sometimes like "u", depending on the word and the speaker, and Forvo seems to give you both versions.

    დემნა გვასალია pronunciation: How to pronounce დემნა გვასალია in Georgian
    The correct pronunciation by an actual speaker from Georgia itself.
    Thanks a lot for your help anyway! : )
     

    green_muse

    Senior Member
    Russian
    Guys, Georgian is my second language and I am telling you how it is pronounced: DEmna GvAsalia. This is how we say it.
     

    green_muse

    Senior Member
    Russian
    Forvo gives the pronunciation
    დემნა გვასალია pronunciation: How to pronounce დემნა გვასალია in Georgian

    It is true that the first syllable of Georgian words often carries more stress, as @green_muse says, but differences in stress are usually not very marked. Note also that is sometimes pronounced like an English "v" and sometimes like "u", depending on the word and the speaker, and Forvo seems to give you both versions.
    I have never heard of "v" to be pronounced as "u". Georgian language has a peculiar feature: we say and read every letter. Only in some words, such as შეურაცხყოფა, when pronouncing it most people say შეურაწყოფა because it is difficult to pronounce so many consonant sounds at once.
     

    JamessCrust

    New Member
    English
    That seems to work for many languages, but I cannot get Google Translate to pronounce Georgian for me, neither on my Android app nor Windows webpage. Could you post instructions, or a screenshot of where to click, as I think it could be sometimes handy? Thanks
    It won't do Georgian. It will only read in English, so no option to pronounce Georgian words in Google unfortunately. You could use that trick to maybe pronounce Georgian names (written with Latin letters) correctly, but it still has very high probability of error.
     

    winenous

    Senior Member
    English - British
    I have never heard of "v" to be pronounced as "u". Georgian language has a peculiar feature: we say and read every letter.
    That is what Georgians often say - they say ვ is always pronounced the same - as ვ. But to an English ear there are two distinct possible sounds - v and u. It varies with speaker, and with position in the word. I understand v is always acceptable, but often you hear u. Remember I am talking about v and u (w might be a better way to describe it) in English - the Georgian უ would be pronounced distinctly as a separate vowel, and is very different.

    Listen carefully to Georgians saying ქვევრი. The first ვ nearly always pronounced as if there were an English u, and the second as a v. Check it on Forvo for example: Pronunciations for ქვევრი . "Learn Georgian with Roni" on YouTube covered the point in one of his videos, but I cannot quickly find which one. I only mentioned it because the ვ in გვასალია sounded different to me in the two Forvo pronunciations I linked to. I suspect the u pronunciation is more common in normal Georgian speech, but I am not sure of that.

    Incidentally, English speakers would also say t is always pronounced the same in standard British English - as a t of course. But in fact it is sometimes ტ and sometimes თ, depending on position in the word. It is the same sort of thing, but in reverse. The general point is that native speakers are not always best placed to explain (in words, as opposed to by example) to foreigners how to pronounce their own language. I am also aware that a native English speaker must be careful when explaining to a Spanish speaker!

    (I agree that in the Forvo pronunciations the first syllable of the surname has the most stress, but the stress differences are not very marked, as they are in Spanish for example.)
     

    green_muse

    Senior Member
    Russian
    ტ and თ are completely different sounds. თ is the same as in English, whereas ტ is similar to the Spanish one.
    To me, in ქვევრი both ვ are ვ. Maybe to native English speakers they sound different, but I don't notice any difference at all. I would say it with two ვ-s: qvevri.
     

    winenous

    Senior Member
    English - British
    ტ and თ are completely different sounds. თ is the same as in English, whereas ტ is similar to the Spanish one.
    To me, in ქვევრი both ვ are ვ. Maybe to native English speakers they sound different, but I don't notice any difference at all. I would say it with two ვ-s: qvevri.
    That is sort-of what I was saying. Because of my language background, I struggle to hear the difference between the ტ and თ in Georgian, while I can hear distinct differences in how ვ is pronounced. While for you it is the other way round. I think the reality is that there are differences in both cases.

    I am told that the "t" in the English word "take" is like თ, but the "t" in the "stake" is ტ. However, it would not be obvious to any native English speaker.

    I cannot comment on the Spanish "t", really. It has always sounded like an English one to me, but then it would!

    Best wishes, Steve
     

    winenous

    Senior Member
    English - British
    In my opinion, the most accurate English transcription of the surname would be Gwasalia.
    On reflection you are quite right. The problem with "u" is that it can be pronounced in so many ways in English.

    Initially I did not spend much time thinking about how to describe the sound in writing, as I hoped my point would be clear in the Forvo recordings I linked to, and then I just continued using "u".
     
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