psychedelic pronounced with an initial p

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Senior Member
Hi there,

I was watching a documentary about The Rolling Stones last night and there was this lady friend of two of the band members, talking about LSD and psychedelic stuff. And she pronounced "psychedelic" with an initial p! Is that a possible pronunciation? I was all the more surprised as she had lived through the era when the word psychedelic was
used all the time.

To me, psychedelic, from psyche, has always been
/ˌsʌɪkəˈdɛlɪk/, as WR has it.

How do you pronounce it, and have you heard anyone say /ˌpsʌɪkəˈdɛlɪk/ ?

  • entangledbank

    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    I've never heard initial /p/ in any such word. Old dictionaries - like the first-edition OED - have /ps/ as a possible alternative (in psychology and so on), but I've never heard of anyone, however old, actually saying it.
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