Caesar Pronunciation?

Jan 2009
What is the actual, proper pronunciation of Caesar's name?



From my almost forgotten initiation to Latin... For Romans, C is pronounced as K. So Sicilia pronounced Sikilia. Socii is pronounced Sokii. Hence, the first pronounciation is wrong. However, I seem to recall that there was a debate going on with another university whether 'ae' is pronounced as 'ee' or 'ai'. I was taught the former way, while the other university used 'ai'. Alas, I forget what the actual reasoning behind it was. Or was it the other way around? My memory fails me.

So I would pronounce the name Caesar as Keesar (not Keezar).

EDIT: Ah, wikipedia to the rescue. 'ai' is the archaic pronunciation, while 'ee' is the vulgar pronunciation of the rural folk and became dominant as the years went by.


Ad Honorem
Nov 2007
The first one sounds like russian czar, the second like german kaiser. In Italian Caesar is Cesare with a C pronounced like in Ciao or Che (Guevara :)).
Yes, but that's Italian, not Latin.

Is it that way in Latin? Caius is pronounced with a hard C isn't it?
It isn't. IIRC (which is not guaranteed) Caesar as originally spoken was almost identical to the modern German "Kaiser".
Mar 2010
Yeah, Hadley. If you ordered a kaiser salad you'd probably get something with sauerkraut in it.:) The funny one is Cicero, or should I say Kikiro. Sounds Japanese.
Mar 2010
"c" was pretty much invariably pronunciated as a "k" in the ancient world.
may in "your ancient times" was like that , not in mine :p

the second c in a word may be pronounced K ,,,, but in many , many cases , not the first c

( omg... we will never see the end of this ...:rolleyes: lol)

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