Have you ever hesitated to pronounce certain Toronto streets or neighbourhoods for fear of sounding like a total newbie? It turns out you’re not the only one.
Preply, a language and e-learning platform, has revealed the top Toronto spots, streets, and neighbourhoods that people have been Googling for the correct pronunciation.
“Some places are super simple to get right, but good luck with these lesser-known towns in Toronto,” Preply told Daily Hive in a release. “Unfortunately, how to pronounce Toronto’s streets, neighbourhoods, and destinations that make up our everyday vocabulary is much more complicated than it should be.”
Here are the 10 most mispronounced places in the city and how to pronounce them like a true Torontonian.
Unless you want to sound like a tourist, do NOT pronounce the second T. It’s not “tor-ahn-toe,” “Toronno,” or “Churrano,” it’s “Tuh-ronno.”
Geoffrey is a residential street with a tricky pronunciation. It’s not “Geo” or “Ji” like “George.” Instead, it’s pronounced with a “Jeh” like “Jeffery.”
Residents know that the “k” is silent so it’s “Etobico” and not “Etobi-COKE.” According to Preply, the name Etobicoke (with its silent “k) comes from the Ojibwe word “wadoopikaang,” which refers to a place where alder trees grow.
This one’s simple enough. One of Toronto’s main streets, Yonge Street is pronounced “Young Street.”
This busy street with its own subway station is pronounced “WELLZ-ley” and not “WellLESS-ly.” But if you’re a regular on the subway, you probably already knew that.
Beware the silent “s.” This short street downtown is pronounced “Grov-ner.” Preply says, “Let’s all pretend to be English and say ‘gro-vner’ almost like ‘guv-ner!'”
7. The Esplanade
Correct: thuh esplan-aad
Incorrect: thuh esplan-AID
As tempting as it is to call it the “Esplan-AID,” resist the urge. It’s “Espan-aad.”
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This is a tough one. This street that stretches from Lake Shore Boulevard to Trinity Bellwoods Park is pronounced “Strawn” (like yawn) and not “Strack-an,” according to Heritage Toronto.
This is a more controversial one. While the most common pronunciation is “spuh-die-nah,” apparently the historical pronunciation is actually “spuh-dee-nah.” Who knew?
“Some say Rawn-sez-valls; others insist that it ends with ‘vale.’ Others give up and call it Roncy,” states the release. People clearly can’t agree on how this Spanish word is pronounced. It’s actually “rawn-SES-vay-yez.”