In this page, we're going to be dealing with names which are Latin adjectives. I've got my own crotchety pronunciation of douglasii, for instance; you don't need to hear that rant. They should never have allowed species to be named after people.
But most species have Latin-adjective names, and we can all pronounce them correctly.
To start with, the stress in Latin words is completely predictable. Predictable, that is, if you have a Latin dictionary, so that you know whether a particular vowel is short or long.
Short?!!? Long?!!? What's this short/long nonsense? After all, we speak this completely logical, predictable, phonetic language called English, right?????
Um, maybe we better clam up and listen to this long/short business for a few minutes, okay?
Stress in Latin words is very simple.
Okay, to know whether a vowel is long or short, you need a Latin dictionary. However, I refer you to a rulebook for your own native language. Clear and logical and intuitive, is it?
I thought so. So let's get on with Latin. Here's a table of Sinningia/Paliavana/Vanhouttea species pronunciations, with references to the rules that dictate which syllable received the stress.
Before we start, we can formulate some mostly-reliable guidelines about when a vowel is long or not (the only uncertainty in the above rules).
This being language, an activity of human beings, there are exceptions, but they will be noted.
|aghensis||aGHENsis||from AGH||Rule #3|
|aggregata||aggreGAta||combined, collected||Guideline #1|
|allagophylla||allagoFILLa||having different kinds of leaves||Rule #3|
|amambayensis||amambayENsis||from amambaya||Rule #3|
|arenicola||arenICKola||growing in sand||Guideline #2|
|barbata||barBAta||bearded (and by extension, old-timer)||Guideline #1|
|brasiliensis||braziliENsis||from Brazil, wherever that is||Rule #3|
|bulbosa||bulbOsa||having bulbs||Guideline #2|
|calcarata||kalkaRAta||spurred, heeled||Guideline #1|
|canescens||kaNESSens||growing white||Rule #3|
|carangolensis||karangoLENsis||from Carangola (a city in Brazil)||Rule #3|
|cardinalis||kardiNAlis||[original meaning] essential, hence [from the color of the cardinal bishops' robes] red||Guideline #1|
|cochlearis||kokleAris||snail-like from Latin cochlea (snail)||Guideline #1|
|concinna||konSINna||symmetrical, elegant||Rule #3|
|curtiflora||kurtiFLOra||short flower||Guideline #2|
|gigantifolia||jiganti (or giganti-)FOLia||huge-leaved||Rule #2|
|glazioviana||glazioviAna||to do with Glaziou||Guideline #1|
|gracilis||GRAcilis||slender, simple||Guideline #4|
|incarnata||inkarNAta||[literally] made flesh (who knows what the namer had in mind)||Guideline #1|
|insularis||insuLAris||of island||Guideline #1|
|leucotricha||lukoTREEka||white hair||Rule #3|
|macrophylla||makroFILLa||big leaf||Rule #3|
|macropoda||makroPOda||big foot||Guideline #2|
|macrostachya||makroSTAkya||big stem||Rule #2|
|nivalis||niVAlis||snowy, wintry||Guideline #1|
|nordestina||see discussion||northeast||see discussion|
|pendula||PENdula||hanging (pendant)||Guideline #3|
|piresiana||piresiAna||[Named after Pires somebody, maybe?]||Guideline #1|
|pusilla||puSILLa||petty, puny (cf. pusillanimous = puny-spirited)||Rule #2|
|rupicola||ruPICKola||growing on cliffs||Guideline #2|
|sceptrum||SEPtrum||sceptre, authority||Rule #1|
|striata||striAta||streaked, scalloped||Guideline #1|
|tuberosa||tuberOsa||having tubers||Guideline #2|
|valsuganensis||valsugaNENsis||from Valsuga (?)||Rule #3|
|villosa||villOsa||hairy, shaggy||Guideline #2|
nordestina is an invented word, meaning "northeast", referring to the region of Brazil ("Nordeste") where this species is found. Guideline #4 would suggest the pronunciation norDEStina.
On the other hand, Guideline #4 is just that, a guideline. As can be seen from Rules 4a and 4b, it all depends on whether the i in nordestina is long or short. Guideline #4 says that it is usually short.
In such cases, the usual procedure is to look for a similar Latin word, so that one can reason by analogy. If "morbestina" were a Latin word and the i were short so that the word was pronounced morBEStina, then we'd have grounds for assuming that it was short in nordestina as well. If the i were long so that it was morbesTEEna, then we'd guess that nordestina acted the same way.
I could not think of such a word, however, so the whole issue went on the back burner. I kept on pronouncing it norDEStina.
Finally, a little rhyming light went on. The word clandestine in English means secret or stealthy. It sure sounds like it has a Latin origin. If clandestina were a Latin adjective, its pronunciation would give us a clue. Since the English word is pronounced clanDEStin, it was a good bet that the Latin word had the stress in the same place.
Putting my money on the short i, I pulled out my handy Latin dictionary.
And there it was:
The i was long.
So I have switched to nordesTEEna. Taking me a little while to get used to it, though.
It also helps to know that Alain Chautems, who invented the word, pronounces it nordesTEEna.