Harry Potter Trivia: J.K. Rowling Says Everyone Has Been Pronouncing Voldemort Wrong This Whole Time
Posted on Friday, September 11th, 2015 by Ethan Anderton
Despite the fact that there have been no less than eight movies in the Harry Potter film franchise that have featured dozens of actors speaking fearfully and intensely about the dark wizard known as Lord Voldemort, it’s more than likely that you’ve been pronouncing the villain’s name wrong this whole time. But don’t worry, because pretty much everyone has, even the stars of the movies.
In a little exchange on Twitter, author J.K. Rowling confirmed (maybe again for some of the most hardcore fans) the proper Voldemort pronunciation, and it just might surprise you.
Here’s the tweet (via Elite Daily) from a fan that inspired the corresponding J.K. Rowling response:
— Michael Lucero (@mhenrylucero) September 9, 2015
… but I'm pretty sure I'm the only person who pronounces it that way. https://t.co/HxhJ5XY5HP
— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) September 9, 2015
It’s not exactly mind-blowing, but it’s certainly a little disorienting. Many fan responses on Twitter were rather over-dramatic, exclaiming that this knowledge changed everything. Meanwhile, some in France merely pointed out that the rules of their language have allowed they to pronounce it correctly since the beginning:
— Mär (@blowinggums) September 9, 2015
In addition, audiobook narrator Jim Dale apparently used to pronounce it correctly:
@jk_rowling Jim Dale did this as well! And to think I was arrogant enough to suspect he was pronouncing it wrong.
— Kevin Sanders (@kfsanders) September 9, 2015
But even Dale only pronounced Voldemort’s name the proper way in the first two audiobook recordings. In all the ones that followed after the beginning of the film franchise, Dale began to pronounce the villain’s name with the ending “t” sound intact.
At the end of the day, this isn’t anything too earth-shattering, but I suppose it’s nice to know the way J.K. Rowling always heard the character name in her head. And clearly Rowling wasn’t upset with the reading of the name in this fashion or she would have informed producers of the film franchise before shooting began on the movie.
Thankfully, it’s not much of a different pronunciation, and it’s not nearly as annoying as the way some readers pronounced the name Hermione as “Her-me-own” before the movies and their friends corrected them (this is something that I frequently encountered many years ago for some reason, but maybe I just needed new friends).
In the entire run of the Harry Potter book series, Voldemort isn’t even the most complicated name or fantasy word in the text. And if you’ve ever had any problems knowing the correct pronunciation of any other names or words in the books, you can use this handy online pronunciation guide from Scholastic.
However, be prepared, because there do seem to be several more discrepancies between the books and movies here. For example, Scholastic says “Lestrange” is supposedy pronounced “Le-strawnge,” but that’s now how they said Helena Bonham Carter’s character’s name in the films. I think we just opened up a whole can of worms for Harry Potter fans to argue about.Cool Posts From Around the Web: