How to pronounce Y in Dutch
Help? 2 of my friends have names with Y in, Nych and Ryujin, and I need to find out how to pronounce them.
It's pronounced the way you say the name of the letter 'a'. (ay, eigh) http://www.dutchgrammar.com/en/?n=SpellingAndPronunciation.03
That's not quite correct. The ij/ei sound doesn't exist in English. It is like saying the "e" in "egg" and then "ee" in tree. For example, "zijn" is pronounced as /zɛin/.
Nijgh is pronounced as /nɛix/. Ryujin doesn't look like a Dutch name to me so I don't know how to pronounce it.
They both don't seem Dutch names. At first glance I would pronounce them as Nijk and Ruin respectively, but I doubt they are Dutch names. The second seems more Japanese even.
The pronunciation of y (or ij) comes closest to i in ice I think.
Thank you, and Lenkvist too! They aren't Dutch but we are trying to learn Dutch together and I wanted to be pronouncing their names accurately.
You should pronounce their names as where they originate from. My name is Jane (English), but I don't pronounce it using Dutch alphabet sounds as it would be incorrectly saying my name as that's not where my name comes from. You should only really be saying names that originate from The Netherlands (you can google Dutch baby names if you need help finding some) as they are said in Dutch. Albeit the thought of saying your name the Dutch way is nice, you should stick to pronouncing you and your friends' names as how they originally sound.
If you want to practice names, give yourself Dutch names to actually practice with like an alter ego, it'll make it easier on you and your friends to actually find the correct pronunciations for those rather than try to guess how your name would sound with other languages' sounds imo. :)
Thank you very much, Jane! I'll certainly discuss it with them and see what they think. Thanks again for the advice.
And if you want to look for some common Dutch names, you can look here. Of course there are a lot of foreign names in there, the influence of Anglophone culture will be clear and there are significant groups of Moroccan and Turkish decent living in the Netherlands. But names like Gerda, Jeroen, Martijn and Marijke are very Dutch and probably good practive for your pronunciation (it's very rare that these kind of names are pronounced close to correct by non-Dutch speakers).
BTW I was surprised that there was no Jan-Kees (Yankee) in there. :)