Lake Chargoggagoggmanchauggagoggchaubunagungamaugg

  • #1
Ivan Seeking
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Say that one real fast three times!

CBS did a report on this tonight. After it was noted that the spelling of the Lake's name had to be corrected on the town's sign, CBS pointed out that the police cars have it spelled out incorrectly on their doors, as well!

Lake Chaubunagungamaug (pronounced /tʃəˌbʌnəˈɡʌŋɡəmɑːɡ/), also known as Webster Lake, is a lake in the town of Webster, Massachusetts, United States. It is located near the Connecticut border and has a surface area of 1,442 acres (5.83 km²). The translation of the name of the lake is believed to be, "Fishing Place at the Boundaries -- Neutral Meeting Grounds".[1] This is different from the translation, "You fish on your side, I fish on my side, and nobody fish in the middle", a hoax believed to have been concocted by the late Laurence J. Daly, a Worcester newspaper correspondent.[1]

Lake Chargoggagoggmanchauggagoggchaubunagungamaugg... is a 45-letter alternative name for this body of water, is often cited as the longest place name in the United States and one of the longest in the world. Today, "Webster Lake" may be the name most used, but some (including many residents of Webster), take pride in reeling off the longer versions.[2]...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lake_Chaubunagungamaug
 

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  • #2
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A lake with an authentic monster: its name.
 
  • #3
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I would bet some $ that somewhere in the world, some parents gave their kid this name.
 
  • #4
mgb_phys
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http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/8/8d/LlanfairLARGE.jpg/1000px-LlanfairLARGE.jpg [Broken]
 
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  • #5
berkeman
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Shouldn't this threa be in S&D? :tongue:
 
  • #6
Ivan Seeking
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Shouldn't this threa be in S&D? :tongue:
No, just consider it traditional native American lawyer lingo.
 
  • #7
Chi Meson
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I've driven past this lake dozens of times since it is just off I-395. For people in this area, I'd say "Webster Lake" is tied with "Chaubunagungamaugg" as the preferred name, a choice which seems to split along political lines (unconfirmed).
 
  • #8
Astronuc
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http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/8/8d/LlanfairLARGE.jpg/1000px-LlanfairLARGE.jpg [Broken]
[/URL]
I've been there. :biggrin:

Very nice place with very nice people.
 
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  • #9
Moonbear
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http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/8/8d/LlanfairLARGE.jpg/1000px-LlanfairLARGE.jpg [Broken]
[/URL]

I've never been there, but my Welsh friend, who did a post-doc with me, had a coffee mug with that name on it...he could even pronounce it! :biggrin:
 
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  • #10
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Here a reporter takes a stab at it and gets it right. More interestingly, and unsurprisingly, there were some spelling errors on signs pointing to the lake:
 
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  • #11
Chi Meson
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Here a reporter takes a stab at it and gets it right. More interestingly, and unsurprisingly, there were some spelling errors on signs pointing to the lake:
When you think of it, the "spelling" of a Nipmuck word is speculative since the Nipmuck did not have an alphabet. Across New England, the Lakes that end in the "og" sound end in -og, -ogg, -aug, -augg, and if they were written by a Welshman, -mhwallaihghaullgg. The lake is in reality called either "Webster Lake" or "Chaubunagungamaug" and the rest of the name appears to have been deliberately put together to make it "The Longest name." You quite literally have to go to the lake to have people call it that. Choosing to add the extra g's conveniently makes it longer. I can be certain that 200 years ago, no Nipmuck checked over the shoulder of a reporter as he transcribed the name of the lake ("that's two g's, that's right, "au" not o. one g there, and two g's there. yep, you got it").
 
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  • #12
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I'll agree with that. It's probably incidental if their language can attach modifiers to a base and still be sensical. Try it in English and we can't get away with it:

restlessnessmentationalizationabilismities
 
  • #13
Ouabache
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I am curious what a Pawtuxet, Wampanoag or Pequot would call this lake. They (like the Nipmuk) also speak a dialect of Algonquin.
 

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