WE NEED TO IMPROVE OUR EDUCATION SYSTEM.
The misuse and abuse of the poor apostrophe is nothing when compared with the widespread mispronunciation of “ae”.
When the letter “a” is joined with the letter “e”, the resulting sound is a long “e”. It is that simple. It is not sounded like a capital “A” (as in “hay” or “day”).
Caesar (ceezar), encyclopaedia (en-sigh-klo-peed-ee-ah), paedophile (pee-doh-file), paediatrics (peed-ee-ah-trix), haemoglobin (hee-mo-globe-in), daemon (dee-mon).
A common example of common mispronunciation is Aerial (ee-ree-al). Scottish is perhaps the worst for this, for gaelic should be “gee-lik” not “gay-lik”.
The most annoying examples are found when people try to represent Glaswegian with a Scottish tool.
To do — do is pronounced “day” in Glasgow, but it is very often written as “dae” — which would be pronounced “dee” — which reveals it’s Scottish origins (it sounds more Dundonian to say dee for day) . This is probably due to the comic strips originating in Dundee, especially “Oor Wullie” and “The Broons”. Try reading them afresh, but pronounce the “ae” correctly — as in Dundee and not as in Glasgow, it will become clear that “dae” is indeed “dee” and not “day”.
Long have the Scots been annoyed by the English mispronouncing “loch” as “lok”. Now take the “ch” sound and soften it or quieten it down. The resulting sound was written down as “qu”.
So “qu” sounds like “ch” — but less wet, and more whispery — or more to the front of the tongue than the back.
Thus the word “quine” would be said, starting with a soft loch “ch” sound — yet I am always hearing people say “kwine”! The word “quine” is closer the word for child, “wean” (pronounced “wane”), than people seem to realise. The best way to pronounce Scottish words provided by the likes of Sir David Lyndsay and Robert Burns, is to abandon Glaswegian and embrace Scotland — the softer sing-song tones of Inverness and the highlands, or the lilts of the borders.
When reading “Oor Wullie” or “The Broons”, a Dundonian accent is required — not a Glaswegian one! Burns did not write for the Glasgow tongue. Malky the cartoonist mispelled back in the 70s, and now it’s “Still Game” and “Chewing The Fat” that compounds the error; “Gonnae no dae that” is what I see written, but as it is said “Gonny no day that” rather than “Gonee no dee that” the problem is clear: there is a long tradition of writing Scots, but there is no such tradition for writing Glaswegian — and so Glaswegians are taking the Scots spellings and mispronouncing them on the basis of a hard “ch” and the mistaken idea that “ae” is pronounced “hay”.
Things are Getting Worse.