Cerberus pronunciation

Is it true that you people pronounce “Cerberus” with a soft C (Surr-burr-uhs) instead of the more etymologically correct “Care-bare-oos” ?

When I hear “Surr-burr-uhs” it always makes me think of “axe me a a question” or “bob wire fence”

I know it is commonly pronounced that way, [em]now[/em], in English… but that doesn’t make it right. Don’t you people study Latin in schools anymore?

Oh…and get off my lawn! :slight_smile:

PS: why is it so hard to find diet dr pepper in new zealand?. I’m grumpy from caffeine withdrawals.

@ mtylerjr - I’ve always pronounced it Sir-ber-us, with the family of boards shortened to Sirb.

Care Bears are way too cuddly to be associated with these boards! :wink:

@ mtylerjr - Cerberus - Wikipedia makes clear it’s “ir” as in “bird”.

And Cerberus Definition & Meaning - Merriam-Webster

Has a speaker icon you can click to hear the pronunciation.


You are completely right about the carebears. Being a Dane, I know how to pronounce latin stuff.

Here is the latinenglish version:

So, according to one of the commenters there the difference is between the Greek vs. Latin pronunciation. They’re both correct.

I have to say, I never expected to be discussing/debating Greek vs. Latin in these here forums (fora?). :wink:

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@ devhammer - INDEED!

So, according to the Wikipedia discussion of the etymology of “Cerberus”…

“The name ‘Cerberus’ is a Latinised version of the Greek Kerberos.”

So, that says to me that if you spell it with a ‘C’ then its pronouned “Sir-bur-oos” and if you spell it with a ‘K’ then it’s pronounced “Care Bear oos”. :slight_smile:

Except that classical Latin pronounces the C as a K. English started mispronouncing it as an S eventually, after the black plague took out most of the aristocracy in England, and the commoners who rose to fill the gaps began to try and pronounce things with a “french sounding” accent, to try and belie their commoner origins. But they mispronounced Cerebus mostly out of an illiteracy of Latin and Greek.

But I still dont think that is right. It’s like 200 years from now, if “Axe me a question” is deemed “acceptable” because of common usage.

(This is only applicable if you are intending to name it after the legendary creature. If it is named after some other cerberus, then I guess it should be pronounecable any way you want, lol.)

Kerberos was already taken.

@ mtylerjr - Be sure to let me know when you place your next order. :whistle:

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Uh oh. Am I going to end up with a Kerb40 II? :smiley:

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@ mtylerjr - you have officially made the “list”! ;D

I gotta go with @ devhammer on this one as I heard the Greeks sold the pronunciation rights to this in order to try to raise some much needed capital for their country, so Sir-ber-us it is to the highest bidder in the back row.


@ mtylerjr - I agree with you regarding Classical Latin vs. Medieval Latin. Despite it sounding cooler as Sir-ber-us vs. Ker-ber-oos, Classical Latin pronunciation is always dismissed for the Medieval Latin pronunciation.

Take, for instance, Veni, Vedi, Vici. We usually pronounce it Venee, Veedee, Veechi, when, in fact, Classical Latin it would be When-nee, Wee-dee, Weekee.

That is also why the German Kaiser came from Latin Caesar. They are basically pronounced the same.

Um… Hi Gary. :slight_smile:

My raptor is being fixed/replaced. So… there should be a shipment to me in the next few days…

I was going to ask if I can piggy-back a small order in the return (to save shipping) - namely a Cerb40 II

Either way (if I can do that, or not) here is your requested “notification” :smiley:

@ mtylerjr - well let’s just say something special will come with your order! :whistle: