Israeli programmers use many words of English origin when they speak Hebrew. (Many of them prefer to write only in English instead of Hebrew, which is a separate issue.)

When they use these English words, they tend to adapt them to Hebrew pronunciation. Some adaptations are simple, for example “router” is pronounced with an Israeli, rather than English [r] sound (some people – not necessarily purists! – use the Hebrew word נַתָּב [natav] for that). “SQL” is rarely pronounced as “sequel” – usually it’s “ess cue el”, and the same goes for MySQL.

But some are harder to explain. For example, “component” is often pronounced [kompoˈnenta]. I heard it in several companies and i don’t quite understand why. Note the [a] in the end and the stress, too: in English it’s supposed to be something in the area of [kʌmˈpoʊnənt] – on the second syllable, not the third. I have never heard an Israeli programmer pronounce it with correct stress when speaking in English – i always hear it as [ˈkomponənt] – with stress on the first syllable and with a [o]’s in the first two syllables.

The only languages available on Google Translate in which this word is anywhere near [komponénta] are Serbian (компонента), German (Komponente), Romanian (componentă) and Spanish and Italian (componente). It may have something to do with them, but the solution is probably more complicated. Does anyone have any idea?


One thought on “Componenta

  1. re: “sql” ≠ “sequel”, there’s also the reverse phenomenon. A light emitting diode is called “LED” (ell-ee-dee) in the world, but in Israel it’s pronounced like the word “lead” (the metal).

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