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Ninebelow [userpic]
Just The Two Of Us

Irene is pronounced:



I know both are right, but my mum is I-ree-nee so I felt a sudden flash of recognition.

ETA ironically it means peaceful... what went wrong?

Edited at 2011-10-10 14:34 (UTC)

I'd never heard of the second pronounciation but I've just started reading The Two Of Us by Joanna Russ in which it is described as the British way.


Not by this Brit.

The second one is how I would pronounce Irini.

I declare an interest: both my grandmother and my aunt were called Irene, with the final syllable pronounced, but throughout my grandmother's life she found herself being called the short version. Born and raised in Devon where no-one had a problem with the three-syllable version, she spent much of her life subsequently in south London where everyone assumed it was "Ireen"...

My mum is from Southampton; I wonder if it's regional

I'm aware of the three-syllable pronunciation and always thought of it as the old-fashioned version.

Depends on which language I'm speaking? In English, it's I-reen, in Hebrew, I-re-na.

I grew up with a woman named Irene (een) down the road and Irene (eenee) Handl on the telly. So I always knew both existed. Took it for granted. One of those things that make our language such a rich tapestry blah blah

Of course the iRene the new internet enabled French resistance barkeeper from Apple is pronounced Throat Warbler Mangrove.