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Monday, June 06, 2005
In television reports about the 1999 Russian bombardment of Chechnya, news anchors seemed to disagree ove the pronunciation of the troubled region's name. Some stress the first syllable, while others enunciate the word with three syllables. What's the correct pronunciation of Chechnya?

The answer is "Chich-NYA", two syllables, with a strong stress on the second. But the inhabitants of Chechnya are known as "CHE-chens", emphasis on the first syllable.

Chechen is aRussian word. While most Chechens speak Russian, they also speak a distinct language as Nokhchiin, and that tongue, Chechens refer to themselves as Nokhchi. Hence, when they attempted to break away from Russia Federation in 1991, revolutionaries proclaimed the formation of an independent nation they called Nokhchi-Chu. And although the capital of Chechnya is widely known as Grozny (Russian for "stormy") Chechens call it Djovkhar Ghaala. But don't worry if you have trouble wrapping your tongue around the Nokhchiin words -- Westerners commonly use the Russian terms and the Nokhchi take no offense when they are referred to as Chechens.

(abstracted from the Book: "The Explainer" from the authors of Slate Magazine)
posted by infraternam meam @ 1:25 AM  
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Name: infraternam meam
Home: Chicago, United States
About Me: I am now at the prime of my life and have been married for the past 25 years. Sickly at times, but wants to see the elixir vita, so that I will be able to see my grandchildren from my two boys.
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