You'll Never Guess How You Say '@' In Other Languages

Corinne Redfern

Basically, the English pronounciation is by far the most boring....



Here's some history for you: The @ sign was first used as an email device in 1971 by a 29 year old computer engineer called Ray Tomlinson. But it actually existed long before then - and you can even trace its roots back to the 1500s, which it was used as a mathematical symbol to help with counting.

But despite its origins, the symbol only became commonplace in recent history - meaning that its pronounciation, and the words used to describe it around the world vary considerably. And they're generally completely amazing.

Which is why we compiled a list of them, for no real reason except for the fact that we wanted to. (You never know. One day it could come up in a pub quiz.)

Armenia - 'Ishnik', meaning 'puppy'

Taiwan: 'Xiao laoshu' meaning 'little mouse'
 
China: 'quan ei', meaning 'circled A'

Denmark: 'snabela', meaning 'elephant’s trunk A'

Germany: 'klammeraffe', meaning ‘cling monkey’

Hungary: 'kukac', meaning 'worm' or 'maggot'

Italy: 'chiocciola', meaning 'snail'

Kazakhstan: 'айқұлақ', meaning 'moon's ear'
 
Greece: 'papaki', meaning 'little duck'

Bosnia: 'ludo A' , meaning 'crazy letter A'

Slovakia: 'zavinac', meaning 'pickled fish roll'

Turkey: 'guzel A', meaning 'beautiful A'

You can thank us later. (Or on Twitter papaki marieclaireuk.)

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