English name

I used to get annoyed when I used to watch international channels in Nepal that they spelled Kathmandu as KATMANDU. I never understood the logic behind it but then I realised that it was Kathmandu’s English name. I was like, seriously!! Why do places in Nepal need English names? A name is a piece of identity, so no matter how hard the name is to pronounce, the place should be called by its original name, not a fake, easily-pronounced one. Most of the time, these names have their own history and meaning behind them so we are ruining it by changing it.

During my holiday, I realised it is not just Kathamndu that has its name changed;  I saw the same thing in so many places in Europe and the Middle East also.

Some examples:

Original Name

English Name

Wien

Vienna

Milano

Milan

Torino

Turin

Firenze

Florence

Roma

Rome

Napoli

Naples

Brussels

Brussel

Italia

Italy

Roosendaal

Rosendale

al-Yaman

Pekino

Yemen

Beijing

These names are not even hard to pronounce as ‘Wien’ is no more of a tongue twister in English than cities called by their original names like ‘Lyon’ or ‘Zurich’. The pronunciation of the original name sounds as good or even better. I am sure people living there love the original name so why change for tourists.

I am not sure how many of you agree with me but for me a place should have only one name and that is its original name. Even though it might be hard to pronounce but it is its name and everyone needs to learn how to say it. Whoever got the idea of giving English names to every place, you are making this world boring. Why not just spend more time in teaching others how to pronounce the actual name instead of confusing others with two names?

What are your thoughts? Do you agree with me?

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10 responses to “English name

  1. I think everything is translated into some language or another. Sorry it upsets you but sometimes we have to face things. I was named in Spanish class Roberta, but I love my name, “Robin!” Since I did not like the translation, I asked could I use my middle name, “Elizabeth?” The teacher said Yes! I loved “Isabella” so much more than the other way I could have been known!All in how you look at things!

  2. agreed – pronouncing different cities is already a tongue twister and then add another name to the city – NOT COOL.

  3. Definitely agree! Let me add one to the list.. “Galle” pronounced as
    “Ga-el-lay” , a famous Portuguese beach city in Sri Lanka is commonly known as “Galle” pronounced “Gaul” in English.

  4. I agree with you on this one. I used to have ESL students from all over the world that kindly let me have their English names because their original names are “too hard to pronounce”. I usually decline and preferred their “difficult” originals.

  5. I think I agree with you, esp in this global age where we sud be open towards learning new things.

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