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Chad Perrin perrin at
Sun Jul 25 17:31:30 UTC 2010

On Sun, Jul 25, 2010 at 08:47:30AM -0500, Kevin Monceaux wrote:
> On Sat, Jul 24, 2010 at 03:47:25PM -0600, Chad Perrin wrote:
> > Actually, "daemon" is a Latinization of the Greek "daimon".  Daimon is
> > pronounced something more like "die-mahn", but (being from the Latin)
> > daemon is prounounced "dee-mohn".  Unix tradition holds that "daemon" is
> > pronounced similarly to the Latin fashion (in practice, roughly like
> > "dee-muhn" by English speakers).
> I guess that depends on which period of Latin one studies.  From Latin
> Pronunciation Demystified:
>     ae like English ai in aisle
> Which is how I pronounce ae in Latin.  On the other hand, I've always
> pronounced daemon like day-mohn, probably from hearing Jon Pertwee
> pronounce it that way in the Doctor Who episode The Dæmons.

Without downloading a PDF and reading it . . . do you know what Latin
variant is used in that document?  Is it classical, church, or
scientifically bastardized Latin (for instance)?  I'm curious.

I know that in at least some contexts the Latin pronunciation is more
"dee" than "dai" for daemon, and that "dee" is the pronunciation
generally considered "correct" for server processes in Unix systems.
Beyond that, it's entirely possible there are other pronunciations of
which I am not aware -- though I'm pretty sure "day" is solely an
artifact of people trying to figure out how to pronounce terms that
contain the ae (or the æ ligature) without actually trying to look it up.

Chad Perrin [ original content licensed OWL: ]
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