Nicholas Bodley scripsit (in multiple postings):

> Where is the syllable split? Mgrv grvladje {practicing sotto voce}?

No, it's Mgrvgrvla-dje. It takes longer to say the first syllable
than it does to say most syllables, but it's a single syllable: the r's,
in particular, are definitely not syllabic.

> (Btw, is "Dvo??ák" one syllable?)

No, indeed: it splits after the o.

> This reminds me of a gentle joke told by Garrison Keillor (Prairie Home
> Companion, iirc distributed by Public Radio International), roughly a
> decade ago, about aid to the former Yugoslavia: Along with food and
> medicine, we were going to include a generous supply of vowels. It was
> meant all in fun, not as a put-down, by any means.

See for details (there are
many copies of this story around the Web).

> Btw, is "Peirce" pronounced almost like "purse"? (I did spell that name
> carefully, with Chas. Sanders P. in mind; it's not "Peirce".) It looks
> like an Irish spelling.

Yes, that's right. (My father was Peirce's student's student.)

> Very clever [list of phonological processes]

Not mine, I hasten to add, though I did merge several extant lists.

> Being completely ignorant of custom, I assumed that when spoken, it had a
> consonant cluster at the end, and was pronounced as spelled, with no "i".
> I'm really curious how it was pronounced in the Old Country (Poland?).
> This reminds me of the first time I encountered what is apparently a
> typical Flemish name-spelling, in this case, "Servranckx". No problem that
> I know of in pronouncing it, but the C cluster at the end is delightful.

Hamtramck is not a Polish name; the place was named in 1798 after Colonel
Jean-Francois Hamtramck, whose troops took possession of Detroit after the
British evacuation during the War of American Independence. The Colonel
was a Quebecois by birth, but it wouldn't astonish me if his family came
from Flanders.

Until 1900 or so, most Hamtramckers were of French Canadian or German
extraction; the Polish immigration raised the population tenfold, and
now about half the citizens are of Polish descent. AFAIK, Hamtramck is
the only city in the U.S. that is physically enclosed by another city.

Unless it was by accident that I had John Cowan
offended someone, I never apologized. jcowan@...
--Quentin Crisp