Author Topic: Character name: Charis  (Read 1625 times)  

Online Spin52

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #25 on: July 16, 2017, 11:41:48 PM »
I went to school with a girl called Charisse, pronounced Shar-EESE. I thought this might be a variant of that.  I always assumed she was named after the actress/dancer Cyd Charisse.


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Offline VanessaC

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #26 on: July 17, 2017, 04:09:03 AM »
I'd have gone with ['kerIs] (or "kay-riss," if you prefer), as well.

But no matter how the reader pronounces it in their mind, it's a lovely looking name. Why not go with it? I read books I love with names I don't know how to pronounce (fantasy) all the time, lol. Doesn't deter from my enjoyment of the book for a moment. I come up with how I want to hear it as the reader, and I roll with that.

*my two cents*

Yep, this - if I am reading, I will "make up" a pronunciation that works for me and it doesn't stop me enjoying the book.

Don't forget that the English language is chock full of words that are written completely differently to how they are pronounced - for example, I didn't find out the "proper" way to say St John until years after I'd read Jane Eyre but it didn't stop me enjoying the book.

Charis is a lovely and unusual name (another Heyer fan here) so if you like it I say go for it.  :)

Offline Evenstar

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #27 on: July 17, 2017, 04:11:53 PM »

Don't forget that the English language is chock full of words that are written completely differently to how they are pronounced - for example, I didn't find out the "proper" way to say St John until years after I'd read Jane Eyre but it didn't stop me enjoying the book.


Yes! I bolded this bit above because it is one of my huge personal bug bears (I have no idea why it gets me so riled, but it does)

I read a book recently by an American author I really like and she named one of her British characters Sinjin, and spelt it that way. Ugh! I literally threw the book across the room and wanted to send her a furious email saying "We spell it St John you dimwit!" Which is totally unfair of me, because how or why should she know, but it really got me in a bate and ruined my enjoyment of the book.

(Almost definitely my issue, not hers, lol)

Online Lorri Moulton

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #28 on: July 17, 2017, 04:23:14 PM »
The reader can always look it up. :)

http://www.pronouncenames.com/pronounce/charis

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Offline V.P.

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #29 on: July 17, 2017, 04:27:12 PM »
Yep, this - if I am reading, I will "make up" a pronunciation that works for me and it doesn't stop me enjoying the book.

Don't forget that the English language is chock full of words that are written completely differently to how they are pronounced - for example, I didn't find out the "proper" way to say St John until years after I'd read Jane Eyre but it didn't stop me enjoying the book. . . .

For me, it was Cholmondeley. Came across it from time to time in British novels over the years and never had a clue how to pronounce it. It didn't stop me from enjoying the book, though. (Love those classic British mysteries from the Golden Age!)
« Last Edit: July 17, 2017, 04:29:35 PM by V.P. »


Online Jena H

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #30 on: July 17, 2017, 04:29:40 PM »
Yes! I bolded this bit above because it is one of my huge personal bug bears (I have no idea why it gets me so riled, but it does)

I read a book recently by an American author I really like and she named one of her British characters Sinjin, and spelt it that way. Ugh! I literally threw the book across the room and wanted to send her a furious email saying "We spell it St John you dimwit!" Which is totally unfair of me, because how or why should she know, but it really got me in a bate and ruined my enjoyment of the book.

(Almost definitely my issue, not hers, lol)

I'm aware of a couple of books that have used this atroc-- er, spelling.  I wonder if the author(s) simply didn't know the actual name (had heard it only, never seen it), or knew and simply decided to spell it phonetically.
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Offline Decon

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #31 on: July 17, 2017, 04:34:59 PM »
Long time ago I had a girlfriend called Charis.

Some people used the Ch as in chair the the aris as in Harris.

Others used the Ch and pronounced it as Sh the aris as in Harris.

She had me calling her Charise (Shareese) which is more French sounding and sexier rather than prettier to a guy. At least it was to me.

Just looked it up. Turns out Charise or Charis means grace.

Other similar are Charissa, Charessa, Clarissa, Clarice, Chanice.

I'd say Clarissa was prettier and there would be no problem with pronunciation. But then I would say that, because I have that name in a book I'm about to publish,
« Last Edit: July 17, 2017, 04:49:26 PM by Decon »


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Offline Evenstar

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #32 on: July 17, 2017, 04:47:39 PM »
For me, it was Cholmondeley. Came across it from time to time in British novels over the years and never had a clue how to pronounce it. It didn't stop me from enjoying the book, though. (Love those classic British mysteries from the Golden Age!)

Ah, I forgot about Cholmondley.  Another one I hear wrong too often not to wince is Beauchamp.

Online Monique

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #33 on: July 17, 2017, 04:57:47 PM »
Isn't expecting people who have never seen or heard a name to know how to pronounce it correctly kind of snobbish and unreasonable?
« Last Edit: July 17, 2017, 05:00:00 PM by Monique »

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #34 on: July 17, 2017, 05:03:04 PM »
Sidhe here. I mean why have extra unpronounced letters in there anyway? :P

St John will always be saint john in my mind. It never occurred to me until this thread that it would sound like sinjin.
I think of Gwynedd as Gwineth since I read somewhere that dd should be th. In fact there are pronunciation guides in a lot of books about the Fae, and I still screw them all up.
Beauchamp... haha I can imagine the slaughterings of that one. My own would be byoocamp or bowchamp if I was feeling snarky. I just looked it up and beechum... really?

The author can only do so much to lead a reader to the way it's supposed to sound. But the reader can always reject it in favor of something that works better in their mind to speed up the reading. And I'd really rather wing it than to stop reading the story to look up how to pronounce something correctly.

Offline V.P.

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #35 on: July 17, 2017, 05:09:57 PM »
Ah, I forgot about Cholmondley.  Another one I hear wrong too often not to wince is Beauchamp.

Beauchamp isn't pronounced the way it's spelled? Now, that one I've been pronouncing "Bo-champ" in my head for years, ever since I first came across it in These Old Shades.
*Gets ready to scroll up and click on the name pronunciation link Lorri provided above. Prepares to be as surprised as she was when she discovered that Cholmondley is pronounced "Chumley"."


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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #36 on: July 17, 2017, 05:12:34 PM »
Beauchamp isn't pronounced the way it's spelled? Now, that one I've been pronouncing "Bo-champ" in my head for years, ever since I first came across it in These Old Shades.
*Gets ready to scroll up and click on the name pronunciation link Lorri provided above. Prepares to be as surprised as she was when she discovered that Cholmondley is pronounced "Chumley"."
Beechum.
I don't even see how they get Chumley out of that.

Offline V.P.

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #37 on: July 17, 2017, 05:18:53 PM »
Beechum.
I don't even see how they get Chumley out of that.

Beechum? Wow, never would have guessed that one. Good to know the correct pronunciation, though. Live and learn. :)


Online Jena H

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #38 on: July 17, 2017, 05:28:03 PM »
Beauchamp isn't pronounced the way it's spelled? Now, that one I've been pronouncing "Bo-champ" in my head for years, ever since I first came across it in These Old Shades.
*Gets ready to scroll up and click on the name pronunciation link Lorri provided above. Prepares to be as surprised as she was when she discovered that Cholmondley is pronounced "Chumley"."

Really??  Chumley??    :(    ::)    Much prettier to have it pronounced Shol-mond-ley.   Why are there words in which entire syllables aren't pronounced--or, more precisely, jumbled together?   (I'm looking at you Worcester and Leominster.  Among others.)

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Offline V.P.

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #39 on: July 17, 2017, 05:36:54 PM »
. . . Why are there words in which entire syllables aren't pronounced--or, more precisely, jumbled together? . . .

Not sure. Maybe it goes back to the Anglo-Saxons and Old English? The Great Vowel Shift might have something to do with it as well. Just speculating here.
Any Brits on the boards know the answer?


Online Sapphire

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #40 on: July 17, 2017, 05:55:34 PM »
We named our first daughter Celice (of French Canadian origin I believe). Correct pronunciation is se-LEES. You have no idea how both pronunciation and spelling have been slaughtered over the years. It's been a pet peeve of hers forever.



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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #41 on: July 17, 2017, 06:06:44 PM »
St John will always be saint john in my mind. It never occurred to me until this thread that it would sound like sinjin.

Yep.  My relatives in Florida certainly don't say "Sinjin's River."   ::)
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Online Jena H

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #42 on: July 17, 2017, 06:18:20 PM »
We named our first daughter Celice (of French Canadian origin I believe). Correct pronunciation is se-LEES. You have no idea how both pronunciation and spelling have been slaughtered over the years. It's been a pet peeve of hers forever.

I used to work with a woman whose parents named her after Liesl, one of the children from The Sound of Music.  For whatever reason, however, they didn't use the Austrian spelling (which I think is very pretty).   
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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #43 on: July 17, 2017, 07:03:00 PM »
This is probably because I'm getting old and weird, but when I saw the name I thought of the Mummy from the old movies. His name was Kharis. :)

Offline brkingsolver

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #44 on: July 17, 2017, 07:14:05 PM »
I have a rule: no character names that end is S.

My editor would prefer that I didn't because of the whole possessives thing.

In my Telepathic Clans books there are a lot of Irish names. Even with a pronunciation guide in the front of the book, no one pronounces the MC's name correctly. And forget about anyone getting Aoife correct.

And let's face it, the British pronounce things weird. They have declared war on phonetic pronunciation. Yes, I know how they pronounce Beauchamp, but it was originally a French word and pronounced as it's spelled.

::ducks::

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Offline Mercia McMahon

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #45 on: July 17, 2017, 11:25:07 PM »
Why are there words in which entire syllables aren't pronounced--or, more precisely, jumbled together?   (I'm looking at you Worcester and Leominster.  Among others.)

Wrong question. The correct question is why when spelling solidified some time post-Shakespeare did these words get spelt that way? Most names that had been changed in pronunciation settled on spellings that looked like what they sounded like. The TV adaptation of The Last Kingdom reflects that by showing the Anglo-Saxon name then changing it to the modern name (usually a shortened version of the original). So nothing to do with rules, but an odd application of standardised spelling rules when that rule was implemented.

St John, which British schoolchildren learn from (I think) Jane Eyre, probably reflects the establishment previously being French-speaking (Saint Jean).
« Last Edit: July 17, 2017, 11:27:10 PM by Mercia McMahon »


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Online Spin52

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #46 on: July 17, 2017, 11:57:05 PM »
Really??  Chumley??    :(    ::)    Much prettier to have it pronounced Shol-mond-ley.   Why are there words in which entire syllables aren't pronounced--or, more precisely, jumbled together?   (I'm looking at you Worcester and Leominster.  Among others.)
When I worked at the Oxford group of newspapers, the editor of the Bicester paper was known as Mister Bicester. It rhymes, you see.


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Offline Sarah Shaw

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #47 on: July 18, 2017, 12:05:56 AM »
I've seen that name used before, although I don't remember where (what book).  I would probably pronounce it Share-iss, or possibly Care-iss.

I likely read the name in a Regency book, so that's what it evokes in my mind.  And, assuming either of my internal pronunciations is correct, I think it's a pretty name.

It's the younger sister's name in Frederica by Georgette Heyer.. In the book I believe they say it means 'graceful' in Greek. Has pleasant associations for me (even though the character in the book is little better than an idiot) and I pronounce it in my like 'cherish' without the 'h' at the end.

Offline VanessaC

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #48 on: July 18, 2017, 12:07:49 AM »
I am really enjoying this thread and finding out that I am not the only one floundering from time to time with my native (only) language. I also didn't know the Beauchamp thing, so that's today's new thing learned!  ;)

And let's face it, the British pronounce things weird. They have declared war on phonetic pronunciation. Yes, I know how they pronounce Beauchamp, but it was originally a French word and pronounced as it's spelled.

Yep! Soooo much weirdness.

I don't mind making up my own pronunciations, or coming across names I have to muddle through - part of the quirkiness of this country - but we Brits can be total snobs in real life when someone gets the pronunciation wrong which I really dislike, having been on the receiving end of more than a few scornful looks in my time! And that's before you count in regional variances in pronunciation - castle for example, around Newcastle its more like "cassel" whereas further south it would be more "caa-sel" (I can't do phonetics very well).

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Re: Character name: Charis
« Reply #49 on: July 18, 2017, 01:04:59 AM »
St John, which British schoolchildren learn from (I think) Jane Eyre, probably reflects the establishment previously being French-speaking (Saint Jean).
When I went to catholic school we had the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. The names are pronounced as they are spelled. Saint John is not Sinjin or SinJean. But it's super fascinating that such a common, easily pronounced (to me anyway) name is so different elsewhere.