'Pronunciation' feature for taxonomic names

Yeah, I’ll say this is unlikely to be implemented as standardization would probably not be possible. But a wiki tutorial or a further discussion in General here would be fun!

Not directly regarding pronunciation, but I have two examples helping to find at least the ‘correct’ emphasis of taxonomic names: In my flora guide, there is a mark (an accent) on the syllable which is stressed:

Then there is this awesome beetle website in Germany (www.kerbtier.de) where there are thousands of species names translated and also indicated how to emphasize them. In both German and English.
As many of the epithets are used for other (non-beetle) species as well, this is a great source to find out what’s in a name:


There is a Wikipedia article on pronunciation of botanical Latin: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Syllable_stress_of_Botanical_Latin

Have you read about this in the introduction to the Jepson Manual by chance? In there it said that since Latin names are meant mainly as a written language, and many words are created in modern times, that there is no wrong way to pronounce names. They suggest sounding out each syllable and some guidance for Latin created from peoples names, mainly preserve that pronunciation. They said, clearly everyone is not going to learn the rules of Classical Latin. They suggest coming up with your preferred pronunciation, and sticking with it.

I used to call Lupinus - LEW-pine-us, but now I prefer lew-PIN-us.


Those of us who were schooled on Strunk and White, Elements of Style, might recall the advice, “If you don’t know how to pronounce a word, say it loud!” Sure works for scientific names.

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Because a) iNat won’t be moving forward on this and b) the discussion has veered away from the original feature request into a broader (and great!) discussion about pronunciation, I’m moving it to General.

Those who voted for it originally (@jacobzippy and @agnes_clamfanger) your votes should be returned to you, but I’m in discussion with Discourse about a possible bug. If you don’t see your votes freed up in a day or two, let me know.

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