4

The Cyrillic letter Ge (Г) is often Anglicised as ⟨g⟩. However, this depends on its pronunciation within each source language. Ge in Ukrainian is closest to the English /h/, and is therefore translated as ⟨h⟩. Keep in mind that an Anglicisation system is intended for English speakers.

Ge in Belarusian is often Anglicised as ⟨h⟩ (as in the name Siarhei), despite being closer to the English ⟨g⟩. Why is this?

4

Because it's the closest unambiguous sound.

Belarusian also has a /ɡ/ sound, used mainly in loanwords. Some speakers follow the convention of Ukrainian and write this sound with <Ґ ґ>, though this isn't official.

Since there's both a /ɡ/ and a /ɣ/ phoneme, the latter is usually romanized as <H h>, again based on Ukrainian.

| improve this answer | |
  • Fair enough. The transcriptions I've been seeing are probably from a Belarusian point of view, in which context they make perfect sense. Though not in this case, the translating of Belarusian names seems too often to use Russian as an intermediary, a practice probably dating back to the USSR days. – Mad Banners Jul 4 '17 at 0:50

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.