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Pronounciation of Watamu

Chicago, Illinois
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Pronounciation of Watamu

Hey world travelers, I'm narrating a book that references Watamu and I'm not sure to say it correctly. I mean it looks easy but where do I put the emphasis WA-ta-mu? wa-TA-mu? Please help!

plymouth england
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1. Re: Pronounciation of Watamu

All my Kenyan freinds pronuunce it ....wa - TA -mu with a shortened mu - not moooo

London
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2. Re: Pronounciation of Watamu

Spot on!

Mtwapa, Kenya
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3. Re: Pronounciation of Watamu

Hi,

just a bit more info, in Kiswahili 'Wa' is the plural for nouns relating to people, and Kenyans will usually translate 'Tamu' as meaning 'sweet', so you will read that Watamu means (the place of) The Sweet People.

Kenyans use 'sweet' for a range of things that we would use other more specific words for words for, which can get confusing at times until you get used to it, for instance nice, good, pleasant, tasty, as well as sweet in the sugar sense. So a better translation for Watamu would presumably be 'the place of the nice or pleasant people'.

BTW In Kiswahili the 'a' is short as in 'far' but cut short. and the stress is always on the penultimate syllable

Fallen on Hard Times
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4. Re: Pronounciation of Watamu

For: The place of nice or pleasant people, from the top of my head I'd use:

Mahali pa Watu Wema

I'd suggest that Watamu is really an adjective and as Doff says the WA, usually refers to people from the M/Wa class but also has to be used for any living being in any other class, ie Kifaru (Rhino) which is in the N class as is a coconut Nazi, so for "Sweet Rhinos",(a term I wouldn't use) I'd use Kifaru Watamu and for a sweet coconut Nazi Tamu.

I think that Tamu is more to do with taste and _ema more to do with character, I'd say Kifaru Mwema (one well behaved Rhino) and Kifaru Wema for well behaved rhinos.

I hope that confuses the matter!

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5. Re: Pronounciation of Watamu

Hehe!

So the suggestion is that residents of Watamu "taste" sweet? LOL

I've always been told that the "sweet" refers to well mannered, polite people.

However, you say Watamu, I say ........!

Hmm, there should be a song about it.

Fallen on Hard Times
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6. Re: Pronounciation of Watamu

BillfishCrazy, I bet there are some Crusty Old Codgers at Watamu who I certainly wouldn't want to get my teeth into, but........

Try typing: "Mahali pa Watu Wema". Into this site and have a shufi

http://africanlanguages.com/swahili/

Followed by "Tamu" got it?

Then try "ema"

Actually I think your right BillfishCrazy, people at Watamu must be really tasty!

Edited: 10:46 am, January 19, 2012
South West England...
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7. Re: Pronounciation of Watamu

However you say it the webcam shows its still looking good there....

http://kenyawebcam.com/cam.pl?cam=watamucam

Mtwapa, Kenya
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8. Re: Pronounciation of Watamu

Well despite the semantics the local story is that it means the place of the sweet people, but I had it wrong that it means 'nice people'. The legend is that the Arab slave traders used sweet foods to entice people before kidnapping them as slaves

Watamu, Kenya
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9. Re: Pronounciation of Watamu

simply pronounced Watamu...a place of nice ppl.

NOTE: sweet ppl.

10. Re: Pronounciation of Watamu

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