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  • Writer's pictureTammy Lowe

Interesting Fact of the Day...

Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

I’ve discovered a useless (but interesting) fact:

Almost all of us are pronouncing Dr. Jekyll wrong!

Even the movies!

You see, there's a famous British Horticulturalist from the late 1800’s named Gertrude Jekyll. Because she has a David Austin rose named after her, I happen to know that her last name is pronounced Jee-kill, not Jek-ill. All along, I assumed her family pronounced their last name differently than Dr. Jekyll of Robert Louis Stevenson fame.

But, yesterday I read that Stevenson was best buddies with Gertrude’s brother and “borrowed” their last name for his book, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Stunned, I thought...does this mean we’re all pronouncing it wrong?

So, I did a little digging.

Sure’s right there in Oxford Dictionary's own blog under the Robert Louis Stevenson section:

“But how are we supposed to pronounce Jekyll’s name?
Jekyll is pronounced ‘Jee-kill’. This is the common pronunciation of that surname, and the one that Stevenson himself used. As Stevenson stated in an interview: ‘let the name be pronounced as though it spelt “jee-kill”; not “jek-ill”’.

*mind blown*

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