Kephalopod or Sephalopod?

How do you pronounce 'cephalopod'?

  • Soft C (Sephalopod)

    Votes: 11 91.7%
  • Hard C (Kephalopod)

    Votes: 1 8.3%

  • Total voters
    12

DarkwingedDuck

Blue Ring
Registered
#1
I'm sure this may have been brought up before...but I'm wondering what the consensus is here among this large cephalopod community. Do you guys pronounce 'cephalopod' with a hard C or a soft C?

I have been saying it with a hard C (Kephalopod) since an important someone corrected me years ago. But I seem to be the only person to say it this way, and often get funny looks from my colleagues (but I'm the only cephalopod researcher at my uni..so they don't challenge me). I've heard David Attenborough say "kephalopod", but I've heard Roger Hanlon say "sephalopod"...so I'm confused.

How do you guys say it? Do you consider one way 'wrong' or do you think they are both correct? I've been saying it this way for too long to change now...but I'm curious as to what you guys think.
 

tonmo

Titanites
Staff member
Webmaster
Moderator
#2
my understanding:

Europe (and probably NZ and Australia): hard C (although I know I've heard :oshea: use soft C)

USA: soft C

:twocents:
 

tonmo

Titanites
Staff member
Webmaster
Moderator
#4
I *think* I've heard two people use the hard C:
- Dr. Clyde Roper (can anyone back that up??)
- @Colin Dunlop :smile:
 

DWhatley

Cthulhu
Staff member
Moderator
#5
I've heard Canadaians use the hard "C" too so I looked it up :roll: and was surprised to find the UK and US pronounciations given in the Cambridge dictionary:
http://dictionary.cambridge.org/us/pronunciation/british/cephalopod

and backed up by the Oxford dictionary: http://www.oxfordlearnersdictionaries.com/us/definition/english/cephalopod

What you will note that it is NOT the C/K sound that is the difference :sagrin:

In fact, going through the first 7 or so pronunciation listings from Google I cannot find one that even suggests a hard C sound at the beginning.
 

Nancy

Titanites
Staff member
Moderator
#6
I recall having a conversation with Colin about this ( he lives in Scotland). He said that in Scotland they use the hard "C" for cephalopod and also for words like "Celtic".
In my 17 years in Canada, I never heard the hard "c" for cephalopod or Celtic.

Nancy
 

DWhatley

Cthulhu
Staff member
Moderator
#7
I can't find where I heard him use it but Toren Akinson (Canadian, The Darkest of the Hillside Thickets mythos band, not sure of TONMO name) uses the hard "C" so I think I assumed Canada in general. I have asked @anothersquid to weigh in on the matter :grin:
 

anothersquid

O. bimaculoides
Supporter
#10
The word cephalopod comes from ancient Greek and Latin. In both cases, it would be pronounced "keph..." There is no "soft c" in either language.

Yes, that means Julius, Augustus, and the salad are all pronounced "kaiser" if you're pronouncing the Latin properly. Most people don't realize that, but the Germans had it right :)

However, I am neither ancient Greek, nor am I speaking Latin, so I think "seph..." is just fine for English speakers. After all, most of the world calls them calamar, but we anglos call 'em squid... we're not bound by the rules of ancient civilization. I've never heard "kephalopod" except from a few eastern Europeans.

http://www.preces-latinae.org/thesaurus/Introductio/Pronunciatio.html

You'll have to look up ancient Greek pronunciation on your own, or have faith that I've looked it up and am not tricking you :)
 
Last edited:

anothersquid

O. bimaculoides
Supporter
#11
I recall having a conversation with Colin about this ( he lives in Scotland). He said that in Scotland they use the hard "C" for cephalopod and also for words like "Celtic".
In my 17 years in Canada, I never heard the hard "c" for cephalopod or Celtic.

Nancy
Naked guys painted blue and running through the forests of northern Brittania are Celtic (KELTIC)

Tall guys playing silly-bugger with an orange ball around New England are Celtics (SELTICS)

I'm Canadian, and I've never heard "seltic" anywhere except in refrence to the basketball team. Of course, I'm also of Scottish descent :)
 

DarkwingedDuck

Blue Ring
Registered
#13
Seems that the soft C pronunciation is pretty overwhelming. I expected that it would be, but figured there would be a few on here that used the hard C as well. Maybe I should consider switching to the soft C pronunciation?
 

Hajar

Haliphron Atlanticus
Registered
#18
I'm glad you have all already had this discussion. I (Brit) recently confused Kraig Derstler (American) by saying "kephalopod" and he confused me by saying "sephalopod", the first time I had met that pronunciation (as far as I can remember).
 

Jean

Colossal Squid
Supporter
#19
Keph, but I don't think it really matters after all the plural of octopus should be octopodes which is just horrible!
 

DWhatley

Cthulhu
Staff member
Moderator
#20
LOL, I really like octopodes if pronounced correctly (ock TOP a dees) but then we would be discussing oc-toe-podes vs ock-TOP-a-dees :wink:
 

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