A-B-C-pig?

How do you pronounce D?

I came across an interesting quirk in the way Taiwanese pronounce the letter D in the English alphabet today. Apparently, to distinguish between the pronunciation of ‘B’ and ‘D’, the letter ‘D’ will often be pronounced ‘zhū’. That is, the same pronunciation as for pig.

Somehow this has slipped me by during my time here. I’ve heard people pronounce ‘C’ as 西 (xī) and ‘G’ sometimes as (jū) but this is the first time I’ve heard of this pronunciation of D. So if you hear ‘zhū’ while someone is spelling a word now you’ll now it’s a D.

If you’ve heard of this trend outside of Taiwan, or heard of any other interesting habits of alphabet pronunciation then post ’em below!

Update: Thanks to James Hill on Twitter for pointing this out:

豬 is pronounced ‘di’ in Taiwanese, so when people say ‘zhu’ in place of D it’s understood that they are referring to ‘di’, and in turn the English ‘D’ 🙂