Pronunciation of the Surname "Bontea"


Senior Member
Hello everybody,

Recently I have made the acquaintance of a woman of Romanian descent whose last name is Bontea, and I would like to know how this name is pronounced in Romanian. Specifically, I would like to know about its stress and syllable structure. My intuition tells me that it should be on the "o", whereas the "ea" sequence should be pronounced as one syllable, with a non-syllabic "e". In other words, I would assume that "Bontea" is pronounced much like "partea", the definite of "parte", or "vremea", the definite of "vreme". However, when this woman introduced herself to me in English, she pronounced her surname with the stress on the "e" and thus gave the word three syllables. I wonder whether this was supposed to reflect the original Romanian pronunciation, or whether she was just anglicising her name to make it more digestible for English speakers. Could someone shed some light on this?

For those of you familiar with phonetic transcription, which of the two would be the proper pronunciation (naturally, I don't preclude the possibility of some third variant):


Thank you in advance
  • farscape

    mod-errare humanum est
    You are right about the two syllables in Bontea withe the accent placed on the sound associated with the letter "o" sounding much like partea or vremea.

    One possible explanation I can think of for stressing out the sound for "e" and turning the surname into a three syllable word could be to prevent English speakers from pronouncing it like Bontia.



    Senior Member
    Bontea < Bonte < bont (noun) rebellion < Ukrainian bont uprising, riot < German Bund alliance, coalition