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Rambling in Wroclaw

Wroclaw, Poland

Wrocław, Poland. The name alone is enough to keep most people away. I mean, ROW-claw? Sounds dark and sinister. How are you supposed to pronounce that?

Call me a glutton for tongue twisters, but when I first ventured into Central Europe some 15 years ago, I decided I had to visit Wrocław, if only to figure out how to pronounce it. It turned out to be one of my favorite places, and I've been going back as often as possible ever since. The New York Times did a nice article on Wrocław a while back.

And as for the pronunciation of Wrocław, with a little help from a phrasebook, you'll find that in Polish:

  • The W is pronounced like a V (same as in German).
  • The C is pronounced like a TS (as in most Slavic languages).
  • And the L with the weird little line across it? Wait for it . . . it's pronounced like a W.


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