How To Pronounce “Wednesday”

TODAY is Wednesday.

Some of us say WHERE-nuhs-day, almost mimicking the way it’s spelled; others go WENZ-day. The Oxford phoneticizes it like so, with the accent on the first syllable, denoted by the tiny accent mark ˈ:

Wednesday |ˈwɛnzdeɪ, ˈwɛnzdi| (n)

No fear if you can’t decipher the symbols. They sound like WENZ-day or WENZ-dee. I haven’t heard it pronounced the second way before, but whatever it is, Wednesday is surely a double- and not a triple-syllable word.

So long, WHERE-nuhs-day!

While we’re on this word, here’s an interesting piece of trivia, compliments of Oxford:

ORIGIN

Old English Wōdnesdæg ‘day of Odin,’ named after the Germanic god Odin or Woden, the supreme god; translation of late Latin Mercurii dies, Odin being equated with the Roman god Mercury.

The days of the week in ancient Rome were named after the planets, which in turn were named after gods. In most cases the Germanic names substituted the name of a comparable Germanic god for the Roman god’s name.

Now I get why Wednesday, in French, is mercredi.

To listen to how our mid-week day is pronounced, click here: Wednesday

Can you hear the difference between the two? I can’t. Ho hum.


I invite you to write to me at  viv@mywritinghome.com if you have any word ideas you’d like to share.

One thought

  1. As you mention the root of the word is Germanic, Wednesday is said Mittwoch in German which means mid-week. Logical and efficient. Very German indeed!

    Liked by 1 person

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