# How is this pronounced? (subitize)

1. ### Math Is Hard

4,915
Staff Emeritus
subitize

I looked it up in an online dictionary and it said it is pronounced like "soobitize". However, we had a guest lecturer in class last week and she pronounced it like "suhbitize".

Does anyone know which is correct?

2. ### binzing

252
Its probably dependant upon where the speaker is from. For example, people from the US and Brits might say it differently. A better dictionary might even say that it may be used either way. LOL, it doesn't even show up in the Miriam-Webster 11th Edition I have.

### Staff: Mentor

I'd go with suhbitize. All such words, subterfuge, subsidize, subsistence, etc... all have the same pronunciation.

4. ### Math Is Hard

4,915
Staff Emeritus
Thanks for the help. I have a feeling that whichever one I pick, it will be the opposite of what the professor thinks it is. LOL
But I guess I will go with "suhb".

### Staff: Mentor

On the other hand, in the words: subterfuge, subsidize, subsistence, the letter 'b' is followed by a consonant, so by convention sub is pronounce suhb, and is usually a separate syllable (and often a prefix). Often, when the group 'sub' is followed by a vowel, the u is long, soo, and the b is part of the second syllable (su·bi·tize). I think the English and Australians would pronounce syoobitize.

subitize - to perceive at a glance the number of items presented.

6. ### Gokul43201

11,141
Staff Emeritus
Definitely soobitize.

4,220
8. ### Jimmy Snyder

I'm pretty sure my daughter is good at subitizing, as she can add 13 digit numbers in her head and give the right answer immediately. I asked her what's 2 trillion plus 3 trillion and she got it in a flash.

9. ### DaveC426913

16,081
Hmph. And I got in trouble yesterday for pronouncing chootney instead of chuhtney.

10. ### Moonbear

12,266
Staff Emeritus
Well, without having a clue what the word meant (thanks to Astronuc for providing the definition) nor having ever seen or heard it pronounced before, upon seeing it in the thread title, I pronounced it soo-bi-tize. Astronuc's explanation makes sense of why it's NOT suhb-i-tize (that would just break every spelling, syllabication and pronunciation rule I've ever learned).

### Staff: Mentor

Yep, I didn't even think of that.

Last edited: Jan 28, 2008
12. ### Jimmy Snyder

I don't know about that. There's subatomic, subequal, subinvariant, subordinate, suburb.

I think the issue is that the prefix sub-, meaning under or less than, is probably always pronounced the same regardless of the next letter. The thing that makes subitize different is that sub- is not a prefix in that word. It derives from the latin word subitus, meaning sudden.

13. ### BobG

2,340
It's from subito, which is pronounced soob-ito, so I'd assume it's pronounced soob-itize.

It's a niche word you don't see in everyday use and isn't even included in a lot of dictionaries, so maybe the lecturer just guessed.

Interesting subject. It's how you can teach a dog or horse to count. Remember how Roy Roger's horse, Trigger, could count to three? If Roy Rogers had a parrot instead of a horse, he could have 'counted' all the way up to four! Of course, I guess that would have required quite a few other changes in the show, as well.

I've been working with my dog to see how high she can go numerically. So far, we're up to $$\int^{\pi}_0 sin(x) dx$$

14. ### jim mcnamara

1,482
suberin - soo-ber-in
subitize - soo-bi-tize

Astronuc has it - no following consonant after the letter "b"

15. ### Math Is Hard

4,915
Staff Emeritus
Ordinarily, I would think that it was just a guess, but this was a cognitive psychology post-doc who pronounced it "suhbitize". It may fall outside of her area of specialization, but I would think that she had heard this word pronounced before.

16. ### dst

389
Soob (more so 'syoobitise"), it feels 'natural' to me.

But then again, I just found out it's Oiler, not Euler :grumpy:

17. ### Ivan Seeking

12,521
Staff Emeritus
Tsubitize - to perceive at a glance everything not yet done by Ivan.

18. ### dst

389
Soob, it feels 'natural' to me.

But then again, I just found out it's Oiler, not Euler :grumpy:

Now where's that book on Oiclid's Elements...

### Staff: Mentor

:rofl: Now Tsubitize is easy. I guess I won't be giving out pronunciations when I'm going to sleep anymore.

20. ### Math Is Hard

4,915
Staff Emeritus
:rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl:

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