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The Reader's Guide to Wuthering Heights

Pronunciations

For the benefit of those outside the British Isles, I list below the usual pronunciations of some of the more unusual names in the novel, in standard British English and an approximation in the IPA (International Phonetic Alphabet).

If the following character – ʌ – looks like an upside-down ‘v’, then you have the necessary fonts installed to see the IPA characters. If not, you will need something like Lucida Sans Unicode or Arial Unicode MS (see The International Phonetic Alphabet in Unicode).

Name Standard English IPA
Wuthering as in "mothering" with a "w" sound. The first IPA is the more common pronunciation but it is spoken in Yorkshire with a longer "u" like "good" (second IPA) ˈwʌ.ðə.rɪŋ
ˈwʊ.ðə.rɪŋ
Thrushcross "thrush" and "cross", stressed on first syllable ˈθɾʌʃ.kɾɒs
Heathcliff "heath" and "cliff", stressed on first syllable ˈhi:θ.klɪf
Hindley "hind" as in "pinned", "ley" as in "lee", stressed on first syllable ˈhɪnd.li
Hareton "hare" and "tun", stressed on first syllable ˈheəɾ.tən
Linton "lin" as in "pin", "ton" as in "tun", stressed on first syllable ˈlɪn.tən
Zillah as in "villa" with a "z" sound, stressed on first syllable ˈzɪl.ə
Penistone "peni" as in "peninsula", "stone" as in "stun", stressed on first syllable ˈpen.ɪ.stən
Gimmerton "gimmer" as in "simmer" with a hard "g" (like "gimmick"), "ton" as in "tun", stressed on first syllable ˈgɪm.əɾ.tən
Brontë "bron" as in "bronze", "të" as in "tea", stressed on first syllable
(The diaeresis – the two dots – indicates that the letter is pronounced and not silent, it does not change the sound)
ˈbɾɒn.ti:
Ponden "pon" as in "upon", "den" as in "dunce", stressed on first syllable ˈpɒn.dən
Haworth "ha" as in "hat", "worth" as in "worth", stressed on first syllable. Can also be pronounced as "how" and "worth". ˈhæ.wɜ:θ
ˈhaʊ.ɜ:θ