Monday, March 28, 2016

Prydain Pronunciation Guide

As there has been more talk of Prydain recently, and will continue to be for the foreseeable future, I thought it would be a good time to put together this pronunciation guide.

These pronunciations come from The Prydain Companion: A Reference Guide to Lloyd Alexander's Prydain Chronicles by Michael O. Tunnell. In The Prydain Companion, Mr. Tunnell writes:

The pronunciation aids were provided by Lloyd Alexander, who advises us that they are not necessarily true to the Welsh tongue. Many sounds in the Welsh language are simply not available in English. Alexander (1985b) does not want the Welsh words to be a stumbling block for readers of the Prydain Chronicles and has therefore made the pronunciations as simple as possible.

While putting together this visual, I have worked closely with Mr. Tunnell to decide which names to include and which names to leave off. I didn't want this graphic to be a comprehensive list, whereas The Prydain Companion already serves as such. However, hopefully this will be helpful to anyone who enters the land of Prydain and is having a hard time with some of the Welsh names. As you come across names that are not on this list, please refer to The Prydain Companion for a complete pronunciation guide.


  1. Great guide, wish I had it when I first read the series. I just have one question, how do you pronounce Prydain? Is it preh-dane or Pr-eye-dain? Or something else?

  2. My guess for Prydain is just as it is spelled. Pry-dain (or Pri-dane, if you will)

  3. I have been saying EE-lon-why (Eilonwy) since I was a kid as well as PRY-dain. Whoops.

  4. A lot of these are wrong, as someone hasn't taken into account the Welsh pronunciations of certain letters. 'dd', for example, is 'th' in Welsh. Fflewddur for example should be said "Floo-Thur"

    1. The author said they might not be true to the Welsh. However, since he wrote them, he can pronounce them any way he wants.

    2. Marc Okrand can pronounce Klingon any way he wants. In the case of a living minority language, whether "borrowed" for use in a fantasy novel or not, the pronunciations of that language ultimately need to be the final word.