Warwick (pronunciation)

wildan1

Moderando ma non troppo (French-English, CC Mod)
I know that the English city of Warwick is pronounced like "worrik" in BE, whereas the American town in Rhode Island is pronounced close to its spelling: "war-wick"

When speaking about the US singer Dionne Warwick, how is her last name pronounced in BE? War-wick or Wor-rik?
 
  • PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    Note her original family name: Warrick.
    The question was about BE pronunciation: Worrick
    The convention is that a name is pronounced in the way that the holder pronounces it. The BE and AE pronunciations should be the same.
     

    Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    If you search for
    Dionne Warwick: For the record
    You can hear both Jane Pauley and Mo Rocca call her War-wick.

    Note her original family name: Warrick.

    The convention is that a name is pronounced in the way that the holder pronounces it. The BE and AE pronunciations should be the same.
    Elton John should be pronounced rej-in-all-d dwhite.
    I seriously doubt that she took on a stage name to make the pronunciation of her name LESS obvious.
     

    PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    You can hear both Jane Pauley and Mo Rocca call her War-wick
    They are both AE speakers.

    I seriously doubt that she took on a stage name to make the pronunciation of her name LESS obvious.
    Dionne Warwick: A singular voice
    By 18, she was singing backup for Sam Cooke, Ray Charles, and The Exciters. Her voice was too distinctive to remain in the background for long, and it was exactly what the songwriting team of Burt Bacharach and Hal David needed. In 1963, the trio put out their first release, "Don't Make Me Over." Her actual last name, Warrick, was misspelled on the album. The name stuck …
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    I offer you this but can't vouch for its veracity.

    The place in the UK is, as bhaisahab said, pronounced "Worrick". Apparently the singer Dionne Warwick gets very cross when she comes to the UK and hears her name being pronounced "Worrick" as it should be "Wore-wick".

    [General] How to pronounce 'Warwick'?


    Since she was born in the U.S. and every single American introduction of her I've ever heard used both w's I doubt she pronounces it with only one. Whether she gets mad, I have no idea.
     

    Loob

    Senior Member
    English UK
    What an intriguing thread.
    Names are produced the way the 'owner of the name' says they should be produced.
     
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    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    This seems even more definitive.

    Artist names you're unsure of how to pronounce

    Dionne Warwick apparently had to constantly correct people's pronunciation of her name. I heard her once in interview saying "Mah name is..." and proceed to say it how she wanted it said: "Dee-yon War-wick". Accent on the first syllable in each word. The 'e' is silent, and the second 'w' is not silent. She got very tired of being called "Dee-own-ee Worrick".

    It's a well-established principle in English-speaking culture that names are pronounced as the owner wishes. I don't know if that principle is equally well-established in other languages.
     
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    JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    If you search for
    Dionne Warwick: For the record
    You can hear both Jane Pauley and Mo Rocca call her War-wick.
    If you watch the YouTube video that comes up when you search for {"dionne warwick" "mo rocca"} you can hear (in the interview with Mo Rocca) Dionne Warwick say her name - the gold standard! And guess what, she uses both w's. End of story :) Other stories are, well, fake news!
     

    natkretep

    Moderato con anima (English Only)
    English (Singapore/UK), basic Chinese
    End of, indeed!

    The complication is that her original name was pronounced with a single /w/. Her name was misspelt as Warwick (with the second <w> intended as silent) in 1963 (as Paul noted above), but she liked the new spelling which she retained, and with that came the new pronunciation. There will therefore have been a period when people were adjusting their spellings and pronunciations that both versions of each were in evidence!
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    There will therefore have been a period when people were adjusting their spellings and pronunciations that both versions of each were in evidence!
    From reading her biography in the Wikipedia article I don't think that's the case. Her name was misspelled on her very first single. She had been singing before that, of course, but not in any way that gained her great personal fame. She was in a multi-member family group with a changing line-up before being signed because of her demo recordings (which weren't heard by the public, of course). Her first single as a solo artist launched her on her personal road to fame and her name went out to everyone on that first single as Dionne Warwick.

    I think just about any American seeing that spelling in 1963 would have pronounced her name Warwick at that time. Warwick is a normal, recognized pronunciation of that spelling in the U.S. The only famous Warwick in the U.S. is in Rhode Island (not too far from her home in New Jersey) and both w's are pronounced in the pronunciation of that city. Warwick, England would not have trumped that, I don't think. It's not that famous here.

    Pronouncewiki was interesting. All the US speaker pronunciations that resembled real voices said War-wick, Rhode Island. The ones that sounded like computer voices said War-ick, Rhode Island.

    Then there were the audios I found pronouncing it as War-ICK-ree. In other words, Warwick, RI (with the standard two letter state abbreviation pronounced as a third syllable). Not going to trust that one. :eek:
     

    GreenWhiteBlue

    Senior Member
    USA - English
    My question was about the usual pronunciation heard from average BE-speakers, not her own preferences.

    Not sure if anyone has given a clear reply to the question asked as of yet...
    Here is the clear answer:
    The correct pronunciation of a name is the pronunciation deemed correct by the person whose name it is.
    Dionne Warwick has clearly indicated that the correct pronunciation of her name, whether said by someone who speaks AE, BE, CanE, or German, or French, or Polish, is War-wick.
    If any speakers of BE pronounce it any way other than War-wick, they -- regardless of how many of them there may be -- are mistaken, and their pronunciation is wrong.
     

    JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    Here is the clear answer:
    The correct pronunciation of a name is the pronunciation deemed correct by the person whose name it is.
    Dionne Warwick has clearly indicated that the correct pronunciation of her name, whether said by someone who speaks AE, BE, CanE, or German, or French, or Polish, is War-wick.
    If any speakers of BE pronounce it any way other than War-wick, they -- regardless of how many of them there may be -- are mistaken, and their pronunciation is wrong.
    Another version of the answer: if a BE speaker is young enough to have not heard of Dionne Warwick said out loud (or even seen the name) they are likely to us the Worrick version. Once they've heard someone say it how she (eventually) preferred it, the likelihood that they will change to War-wick increases. The extent will depend on how much they adhere to the "the owner determines the right way to say their name" principle. So, some BE speakers will use one version and others will use the other version. Not a very satisfactory answer for wildan1, though :)
     

    PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    I remember the confusion over Ronald Regan who, in the UK, through his film career, had been known as Reegan.
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    I remember the confusion over Ronald Regan who, in the UK, through his film career, had been known as Reegan.
    You mean Ronald Reagan, of course, and not his Secretary of the Treasury, Donald Regan, who did pronounce his name Reegan. Go figure.
     

    WestSideGal

    Senior Member
    English, US
    Here is the clear answer:
    The correct pronunciation of a name is the pronunciation deemed correct by the person whose name it is.
    Dionne Warwick has clearly indicated that the correct pronunciation of her name, whether said by someone who speaks AE, BE, CanE, or German, or French, or Polish, is War-wick.
    If any speakers of BE pronounce it any way other than War-wick, they -- regardless of how many of them there may be -- are mistaken, and their pronunciation is wrong.
    Right on, GWB! Her name is exactly how she pronounces it, period, full stop.
     

    Glasguensis

    Signal Modulation
    English - Scotland
    It so happens that my (Scottish) surname is one which is pronounced differently than the spelling would suggest. It is not a particularly common name but common enough that most Scottish people know it and pronounce it correctly (that is, the way I do). However in England and indeed in France people pronounce it incorrectly. If you ask me how people in England or France pronounce my name I will tell you what they actually say, not what I say, because that’s not what you have asked.
    The original question, which I thought I’d answered clearly, is how the average BE speaker pronounces her name, and in my experience the answer is « worrik ». There are of course numerous people who have learned how she likes it pronounced and therefore pronounce it « correctly ».
     

    natkretep

    Moderato con anima (English Only)
    English (Singapore/UK), basic Chinese
    The correct pronunciation of a name is the pronunciation deemed correct by the person whose name it is.
    By and large I agree - but some people will make allowances for some variation for speakers of another variety or language. I know a number of Germans called Mikael or Peter and they seem perfectly happy to have those names pronounced as in English.

    And to get back to the singer - I say war-wick because that's what I hear in the media.
     

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    I've only ever seen her name in print, so naturally I mentally pronounce it in the British way. It would go against the grain for me to say War-wick, even though I've learned today that it's wrong.

    I also pronounce Berkshire (the brand of tights) the English way because if I said it the American way I'd feel like an idiot. :) ;)
     

    pickarooney

    Senior Member
    English (Ireland)
    From reading her biography in the Wikipedia article I don't think that's the case. Her name was misspelled on her very first single. She had been singing before that, of course, but not in any way that gained her great personal fame. She was in a multi-member family group with a changing line-up before being signed because of her demo recordings (which weren't heard by the public, of course). Her first single as a solo artist launched her on her personal road to fame and her name went out to everyone on that first single as Dionne Warwick.

    I think just about any American seeing that spelling in 1963 would have pronounced her name Warwick at that time. Warwick is a normal, recognized pronunciation of that spelling in the U.S. The only famous Warwick in the U.S. is in Rhode Island (not too far from her home in New Jersey) and both w's are pronounced in the pronunciation of that city. Warwick, England would not have trumped that, I don't think. It's not that famous here.

    Pronouncewiki was interesting. All the US speaker pronunciations that resembled real voices said War-wick, Rhode Island. The ones that sounded like computer voices said War-ick, Rhode Island.

    Then there were the audios I found pronouncing it as War-ICK-ree. In other words, Warwick, RI (with the standard two letter state abbreviation pronounced as a third syllable). Not going to trust that one. :eek:
    I don't really understand how they could have spelled it incorrectly, then. If she said her name was 'Warrick', who heard that and decided to spell it 'Warwick' assuming that word has a different sound?
     

    PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    I can only assume that the name was not heard by the author of the album, and they wrote what they thought they saw in the data available.

    The question then becomes "How was Warrick pronounced? As "[alas poor] Yorick" or "War-rick?""
     

    Linkway

    Senior Member
    British English
    Dionne Warwick is pronounced as war-wick by anyone who is familiar with that singer's work, even among British English speakers.

    If any UK TV or radio show presenter or media person pronounced it the way the way the British city of Warwick is pronounced, they would be scorned as ignorant or careless.
     

    PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    they would be scorned as ignorant or careless.
    In the UK, I am not too sure who would be doing the scorning, (and scorning rather easily) as there seem to be enough people who say "Worrick".

    We must recognise that there are sufficient names with deceptive pronunciation I offer Mainwaring (pron. Mannering); Featherstonehaugh" (pron. Fanshaw), and Cholmondley (pron. Chumly) - If you have such a name, you need to be aware from birth that not everyone is going to get it right first time. Ms W merely suffered from a BE/AE difference.
     

    You little ripper!

    Senior Member
    Australian English
    The original question, which I thought I’d answered clearly, is how the average BE speaker pronounces her name, and in my experience the answer is « worrik ». There are of course numerous people who have learned how she likes it pronounced and therefore pronounce it « correctly ».
    :thumbsup: It’s the same here. Even though I know the ‘correct’ pronunciation having heard many Americans use it, I still say ‘Worrick’ because I read the name before I heard it, and it has stuck.
     

    lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    This Brit discovered yonks ago that her name was pronounced War-wick and has therefore used that pronunciation ever since, on the very rare occasions when I’ve had reason to say it.

    <Comment on Bowie moved to another thread. Nat>
     
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    wildan1

    Moderando ma non troppo (French-English, CC Mod)
    <Deletion>

    Thanks to all for your input concerning Dionne Warwick’s name. I had never heard “Worrick” until I heard a BBC news report about the English town, which before then I had never heard a Brit pronounce it—and that led to my wondering about DW’s name pronunciation over there.
     
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