Pronouncing Downtown Raleigh


This isn’t at all related to development; I’m just curious about the pronunciations of various words encountered in downtown. As I am rarely in downtown personally, I don’t often hear others say the street names or the names of various establishments in the city. That has lead me to wonder how others pronounce things, and whether I am saying them correctly.

Obviously there are some words that don’t need any explanation, but there’s a few in particular that I’d like to get others’ takes on. How do you pronounce these words?

Street names:
Stronachs (alley behind Lincoln Theatre)

The Mahler

These are just a few I thought of — if there’s other names any of you were wondering about, please feel free to bring them up.


Salisbury is like sals-brie, at least.


Hargett has a hard G. Boylan is phonetic. Stronach is Stronick with a short O. Mahler is a short A. Videri is Vi(short I)-dairy. Not sure about Vidrio. Hibernian Hi-Bern- (like the German city)-e-an.

So most of these seem fairly obvious to me at least…just curious, is American English not your native language?


LOL don’t be mean!

I’ve personally struggled with Blunt Street, Carrabba’s St, Lenore St, and a few others.

Street names:
Hargett - HAR-git
Salisbury - Sal’s Berry
Boylan - BOY-lin
Stronachs Alley - Stomach’s Alley

The Mahler - Is this a place?
Videri - Vih-DAIR-y
Vidrio - VEE-dree-o
Hibernian - Hi-Burn-Ian

Actually, Mark, I see your point… LOL


All are welcome absolutely! I just like any relevant context when composing answers. Could also just be from western PA.


I hear a lot of people pronounce Sitti like the word “city” when in fact the two ts are like a th. “Si-thee”

Xoco is pronounced “Ch-oco”

And I call it “blunt” street not “count” with a bl.


Cabarrus is actually pronounced ca-BARE-us, or at least that’s how I pronounce it :grin:


boy-lynn for Boylan.


Oh no, English is my native language. I have a pretty decent idea of how many of these words sound, but this is more to confirm my suspicions than to actually learn something new. Hargett in particular was really bothering me, because I wasn’t sure whether the G was hard or soft, and on which syllable the emphasis was placed.


Honestly I pronounce them however I want. Chances are I’m talking to another transplant or clueless suburban Raleigh dweller who have no idea how to pronounce them.


Blunt street and More-duh-key are the ones that really get me confused.


Oh, thank you for mentioning Mordecai! That used to trip me up quite a bit.


I’m no Latin-ologist, but I was told the ‘V’ in ‘Videri’ is pronounced like a ‘W’, since the name comes from our Latin state motto “Esse quam videri” (“To be, rather than to seem”).


I’m not aware of a rule that says that V’s are pronounced like W’s in Latin, but my knowledge of that is mostly V for Vendetta.


Correct on all three. Sitti even has it on the wall, I think


I pronounce a lot of words how I want and honestly, it’s pretty fun. I think it started with a reference to a show but has gotten out of control since then.


Well I have lived in Wake County 31 years and downtown Raleigh or ITB for 26 so I am glad offer an sage info you might need. Also get off my lawn! Just kidding, I mostly hate grass unless I am on a soccer pitch.


You guys realize that the most common way to say ‘quay’ is ‘key’ right? Fuquay-Varina should really be pronounced Fu-ki-Varina. Haha.


The Morde-Key / Morde-Khi thing, I think, is probably the most debated. I’m on team Key and most people think I’m saying it wrong. I have yet to find someone to prove it either way so I just go with this one as it’s the one I seemed to gravitate too. :wink:


From what I understand, the “key” pronunciation arose from trying to make the name sound less Jewish. Given the time period in which that name because established, that’s a really easy to story to believe.