You’ll Never Guess How You Say ‘@’ In Other Languages

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  • 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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