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  1. #26
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    2,355
    @dindlee LOL, no problem! I think it may also be the accent I have in English- I say the vowel in "set" very different from the one in "sé." I put a harsh stop at the end of my English "e" and it's lower in the mouth/throat, but with Spanish the ending is a lot smoother with a lifted soft palate. I think we probably say it the same, but write it differently. Sometimes I wish Nameberry had an audio component.

  2. #28
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Posts
    296
    eh-LAY-nah
    19 year old name lover with impeccable taste (◡‿◡✿)

  3. #30
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    1,269
    Quote Originally Posted by daisy451 View Post
    It's not terrible and wrong, it's a language that you don't happen to speak.

    Elena is a classic name in Spanish, and it is pronounced eh-LAY-na. In Italian, it is EH-lay-na, and in Portuguese it is ee-LAY-na.
    I pronounce it the Spanish way unless told otherwise, and most people in my area do as well (it's not uncommon here, pronounced eh-LAY-na.) I always thought other ways are mispronunciations.
    Actually, I speak Spanish and Italian - the second syllable of Elena is not pronounced LAY in any of those languages. It uses the [é] vowel that doesn't exist in English but it's much closer to a short [eh] than [ay], which is the butchered English pronunciation for it.

    Being a native Portuguese speaker, I also know Elena is not a Portuguese name at all - we use Helena but the pronunciation is (once again) [é-LÉ-na].
    Arabella, Thibault, Sophia, Alfred, Eleanor, Rémi, Charlotte, Achille, Olivia, Clement, Elizabeth, Frederick, Maud, Benedict, Adèle.

  4. #32
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    1,429
    Elena...
    Gorgeous name that I pronounce as eh LAY nuh

  5. #34
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    2,355
    Quote Originally Posted by sugarplumfairy View Post
    Actually, I speak Spanish and Italian - the second syllable of Elena is not pronounced LAY in any of those languages. It uses the [é] vowel that doesn't exist in English but it's much closer to a short [eh] than [ay], which is the butchered English pronunciation for it.

    Being a native Portuguese speaker, I also know Elena is not a Portuguese name at all - we use Helena but the pronunciation is (once again) [é-LÉ-na].
    See past conversation- I had difficulty expressing that é sound in writing, and approximated it to a long a. I say the name the same way that the recordings other users have listed on this thread say it. (http://www.forvo.com/search/Elena/es/ is the one dindlee gave me.) In my English accent, that pronunciation is closer to the long a than the short e- I suppose I say my short e's wrong.

    I don't know Portuguese, I had a friend tell me that, so thanks for informing me about that!

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