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Dro vs. Drou


D&D 3.5/d20/OGL

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I know this question has already been made, but how do you pronounce 'drow'? I need the answer for another forum.

Taldor

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I've always said it so that it rhymes with 'cow'.

Spoiler:
I really wanted to say that it should rhyme with 'row' but that joke's been done already.

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

rhymes with "now"

Osirion

Nameless wrote:

I've always said it so that it rhymes with 'cow'.

** spoiler omitted **

Spoiler:
I was gonna say that it rhymes with sow... same joke, differant word.

it rhymes with cow though, in every pronouciation i've heard.

Taldor

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Lazaro wrote:
rhymes with "now"

Ditto.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Yup; drow rhymes with cow or brow or now.

Pathfinder Lead Developer, Frog God Games

I believe it's Pathfinder phonetic spelling is given in the back of the Campaign Setting book.

It is indeed rhymed with cow there as it is written phonetically as "drow" rather than "dro" or "droe"

Edit: James has a faster trigger finger on the boards.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Greg A. Vaughan wrote:

I believe it's Pathfinder phonetic spelling is given in the back of the Campaign Setting book.

It is indeed rhymed with cow there as it is written phonetically as "drow" rather than "dro" or "droe"

Edit: James has a faster trigger finger on the boards.

I thought that was a joke, actually, to go with the "Rhymes with bow"! Does this kill the future answers without a resolution? I was rather enjoying it.

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Rhymes with How Now Brown Cow.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Tales Subscriber

I've always said /drO/, rhymes with "throw" or "toe."

The first time I saw the word (8 years old, maybe?) my brain made a logical connection to other similar words with an 'r-o-w' spelling construct: such as row (the boat), throw, grow, etc.

From this point of view, we don't say /graOU;/ for grow, or /thraOU;/ for throw--so why would we say /draOU;/ for drow?

Not to mention, the Gaelic origination has an /O/ sound.


You pronounce it, “Power hungry 13 year old who can not use ninja because that would just be too obvious.”

Osirion

Andrew Turner wrote:

I've always said /drO/, rhymes with "throw" or "toe."

The first time I saw the word (8 years old, maybe?) my brain made a logical connection to other similar words with an 'r-o-w' spelling construct: such as row (the boat), throw, grow, etc.

From this point of view, we don't say /graOU;/ for grow, or /thraOU;/ for throw--so why would we say /draOU;/ for drow?

Not to mention, the Gaelic origination has an /O/ sound.

well, I could just as easily flip that and ask why the words cow, how, now, etc are the way they are. or even better, why are there words like sow, row and bow that change meanings if they're pronounced differantly? it's just the way the languages evolved is all. and way back when, someone decided that drow rhymies with cow. that's all. it could ahve easily gone the other way. in fact it had a 50% chance of going the other way. but the world works in mysterious ways.

CourtFool wrote:
You pronounce it, “Power hungry 13 year old who can not use ninja because that would just be too obvious.”

To his credit, my 13 year old (admittedly power hungry) brother never wanted wither a drow or a ninja. in fact, he is the only person younger then 17 that i've met in person that gravitated naturally to the Gish concept. specifically, a dwarven Gish. which was really cool. and when that died, his next choice was an evil cleric/paladin hybrid. or maybe it was an evil cleric that acted like a paladin. anyway, he was actually pretty good a character creation. it's a shame he isn't as into playing as he is character creation.

Andoran

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Tales Subscriber
kessukoofah wrote:
...well, I could just as easily flip that and ask why the words cow, how, now, etc are the way they are. or even better, why are there words like sow, row and bow that change meanings if they're pronounced differantly? it's just the way the languages evolved is all. and way back when, someone decided that drow rhymies with cow. that's all. it could ahve easily gone the other way. in fact it had a 50% chance of going the other way. but the world works in mysterious ways..

The big difference is the construction of those words.

cow
how
now
are missing a key infrastructure--the preceding 'r'--that should, if present, naturally result in a linguistic syllogism.

Throw and grow, for example, have a preceding letter or letter set followed by letter 'r' and concluded with letters 'ow.' They are always pronounced with an /O/ sound. Therefore, 'drow' must be pronounced /drO/...

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Tales Subscriber

Dro. It's Scottish.


snobi wrote:
Dro. It's Scottish.

What Snobi said, and to elaborate, it is a variation on Troll (the dwarfish creature, not the DnD version). That said, I still pronounce it to rhyme with 'How now brown cow?'. ;)


Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

I thought it rhymed with orange?

Being that drow are a new thing, the pronunciation of its creators, even if etymologically or linguistically innacurate, is still accurate, and I think they say dr-ow, rather than dr-owe.


While I agree with Andrew Turner's esteemed logic (always without fail, is Master Andrew!), I believe Lord Gygax developed the word out of the Gaelic. He chose to pronounce it to rhyme with 'cow,' and so it does.

Osirion

Andrew Turner wrote:
kessukoofah wrote:
...well, I could just as easily flip that and ask why the words cow, how, now, etc are the way they are. or even better, why are there words like sow, row and bow that change meanings if they're pronounced differantly? it's just the way the languages evolved is all. and way back when, someone decided that drow rhymies with cow. that's all. it could ahve easily gone the other way. in fact it had a 50% chance of going the other way. but the world works in mysterious ways..

The big difference is the construction of those words.

cow
how
now
are missing a key infrastructure--the preceding 'r'--that should, if present, naturally result in a linguistic syllogism.

Throw and grow, for example, have a preceding letter or letter set followed by letter 'r' and concluded with letters 'ow.' They are always pronounced with an /O/ sound. Therefore, 'drow' must be pronounced /drO/...

Oooooh...see, now i understand what you were getting at. and i'll admit it's a valid line of reasoning. if i wasn't weaned on rhyming it with now, i might hve started doign ti it the way you say.

Cheliax

Prof. Tolkien wrote:
While I agree with Andrew Turner's esteemed logic (always without fail, is Master Andrew!), I believe Lord Gygax developed the word out of the Gaelic. He chose to pronounce it to rhyme with 'cow,' and so it does.

OMG!!!!!!

You always agree with him even when you don't!

Gygax also spelled Legendary with a 'j'--

Anyway, whatever Andrew Turner says, just do the opposite and you'll be OK!

Pathfinder Lead Developer, Frog God Games

Andrew Turner wrote:
kessukoofah wrote:
...well, I could just as easily flip that and ask why the words cow, how, now, etc are the way they are. or even better, why are there words like sow, row and bow that change meanings if they're pronounced differantly? it's just the way the languages evolved is all. and way back when, someone decided that drow rhymies with cow. that's all. it could ahve easily gone the other way. in fact it had a 50% chance of going the other way. but the world works in mysterious ways..

The big difference is the construction of those words.

cow
how
now
are missing a key infrastructure--the preceding 'r'--that should, if present, naturally result in a linguistic syllogism.

Throw and grow, for example, have a preceding letter or letter set followed by letter 'r' and concluded with letters 'ow.' They are always pronounced with an /O/ sound. Therefore, 'drow' must be pronounced /drO/...

That's an interesting logic. I hadn't thought of it, and I like it. What about the prow of ship, though?

Incidentally WotC in the 2e Greyhawk Players Guide stated it could be pronounced either way. That's why I mentioned above that in Pathfinder, at least, it has been officially translated to rhyme with cow. Outside Golarion, I still think you could go either way.

Osirion

You know, I can envision this sort of argument occuring in game.

The surfaces all call them "drow" since that is the commonly accepted term, and what the elves originally called them when they were encountered, so it is technically correct (just like the D&D term).

However, the drow borrow some elven words but seperated by centuries of etymological mutation. So they call themselves "droh" in their language, and get offended by "drow". Since this is what they originally called themselves (like the real-world Scottish equivalent) it is also correct.

Osirion

It's spelled Drow, but it's pronounced Throatwobbler Mangrove.

Osirion

Set wrote:

It's spelled Drow, but it's pronounced Throatwobbler Mangrove.

Little known fact about Elminster. His full name is Elminster "Two-Sheds" Aumar.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Tales Subscriber
Greg A. Vaughan wrote:

...

That's an interesting logic. I hadn't thought of it, and I like it. What about the prow of ship, though?...

Prow comes most recently to English from Middle French, where the pronunciation was almost exactly /prou/.

Bow (to bend over at the waist, or in deference to a Royal) and bow (the bend, like the weapon's shape, or to bend, say, at the knees), both come to us from Old English, but with different original spellings. Bow (bend) comes from Bowen, pronounced /bou-in/. Bow (weapon) comes from Bowe, pronounced /bO/. Why exactly the spellings changed in English to the same for each is beyond me.

Andoran RPG Superstar 2010 Top 8

Kobold Cleaver wrote:
I know this question has already been made, but how do you pronounce 'drow'? I need the answer for another forum.

I pronounce it 'dark elf'. Tee hee.

Qadira

CourtFool wrote:
You pronounce it, “Power hungry 13 year old who can not use ninja because that would just be too obvious.”

BWA-HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!

(I wanted to add a snippet about Dragonborn here, but I'm really trying to accept 4E for what it is and stop being a bitter old curmudgeon.)


TigerDave wrote:
(I wanted to add a snippet about Dragonborn here, but I'm really trying to accept 4E for what it is and stop being a bitter old curmudgeon.)

Aw come on, fella. Embrace your inner curmudgeon. You know you want to.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Andrew Turner wrote:
kessukoofah wrote:
...well, I could just as easily flip that and ask why the words cow, how, now, etc are the way they are. or even better, why are there words like sow, row and bow that change meanings if they're pronounced differantly? it's just the way the languages evolved is all. and way back when, someone decided that drow rhymies with cow. that's all. it could ahve easily gone the other way. in fact it had a 50% chance of going the other way. but the world works in mysterious ways..

The big difference is the construction of those words.

cow
how
now
are missing a key infrastructure--the preceding 'r'--that should, if present, naturally result in a linguistic syllogism.

Throw and grow, for example, have a preceding letter or letter set followed by letter 'r' and concluded with letters 'ow.' They are always pronounced with an /O/ sound. Therefore, 'drow' must be pronounced /drO/...

Well, sorry but whatever "logic" you want to try and use it is still pronounced as in OUt, or cOW or BrOWn or whatever. It has been the official pronunciation for a very long time.

And all this time the world has been mispronouncing brOW???? Good try but it doesn't work.

The official pronunciation since at least 1985 has been as in Out.

Cheliax

Andrew Turner wrote:
...[blah-blah-blah and a whole lot of crapola about linguistics, of which he knows nothing]...
Krome wrote:

Well, sorry but whatever "logic" you want to try and use it is still pronounced as in OUt, or cOW or BrOWn or whatever. It has been the official pronunciation for a very long time.

And all this time the world has been mispronouncing brOW???? Good try but it doesn't work.

The official pronunciation since at least 1985 has been as in Out.

Thank you, Krome!


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
Renrut Werdna-Bizzaro wrote:
Andrew Turner wrote:
...[blah-blah-blah and a whole lot of crapola about linguistics, of which he knows nothing]...
Krome wrote:

Well, sorry but whatever "logic" you want to try and use it is still pronounced as in OUt, or cOW or BrOWn or whatever. It has been the official pronunciation for a very long time.

And all this time the world has been mispronouncing brOW???? Good try but it doesn't work.

The official pronunciation since at least 1985 has been as in Out.

Thank you, Krome!

LOL. I was about to defend you from yourself.

However, I gave the correct answer to the question in my above post, because I got sweet ass brains, man.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Tales Subscriber
The Jade wrote:

LOL. I was about to defend you from yourself.

However, I gave the correct answer to the question in my above post, because I got sweet ass brains, man.

Prof. Tolkien agrees with you, and what he says, goes. ;-)

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
snobi wrote:
Dro. It's Scottish.

In an interview, with "Witchboy.net" Gary says:

E. Gary Gygax wrote:

In regards to the drow, I found the name in an unexpurgated dictionary. At that time I was writing the “giants” series of modules for AD&D, and planning the sequel. That became the D series, for Drow, of course.

Conceiving of the vast lightless underground labyrinth–much inspired by Jack Vance’s “Planet of Adventure books, specifically The Pnume and Margaret St. Claire’s Sign of the Labyris–was fairly easy. As it developed it became clear to me that I needed a ruling race for this “Underdark,” a fey people if you will. The Norse dockalfar with crow’s feet wouldn’t do at all, so I devised the drow as appearing in the D series modules. The kuo-toans were clearly a minor factor, and even the illithid (mind flayers) could not be placed into this lightless realm as the great masters of it. To emphasize the difference of this race of dark elves I made the females more powerful than the males. (Incidentally, I had meant to do the same in a new race of potent, good elfin sort, but never got to it before I left TSR.) Anyway, the drow were devised to be the antithesis of the usual elves, and the concept worked very well, I must say. There is a good deal of satisfaction in seeing others take my unique creation and develop it into a very major part of the universe of D&D as has been done.

Since he quotes the Norse Dockalfar, it would seem his inspiration for the drow is NORSE not Scottish...

*EDIT*

Issue number 93 of Dragon Magazine had a pronunciation article in it, that included the word drow...

-That One Digitalelf Fellow-

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Tales Subscriber
Digitalelf wrote:


Since he quotes the Norse Dockalfar, it would seem his inspiration for the drow is NORSE not Scottish...

Sorry, I was only answering the OP. I'm sure many things inspired Gary and that's neato.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules Subscriber

Never will there be peace between users of "dro" and "drou".

The war wages on, whether it's the fallen elves themselves slitting each others throats under the surface or wizened old sages pushing each other in musty old libraries.

Qadira

How to Pronounce DROW?

D, Pronounced [DU]
R, Pronounced [AR]
O, Pronounced [OU]
W, Pronounced [UU]

DUAROUUU like DRIZZIT

D, Pronounced [DU]
R, Pronounced [RE]
I, Pronounced [EI]
Z, Pronounced [ZS]
Z, Pronounced [SZ]
I, Pronounced [IE]
T, Pronounced [IT]

Scary!

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Tales Subscriber
yellowdingo wrote:

How to Pronounce DROW?

D, Pronounced [DU]
R, Pronounced [AR]
O, Pronounced [OU]
W, Pronounced [UU]

DUAROUUU like DRIZZIT

D, Pronounced [DU]
R, Pronounced [RE]
I, Pronounced [EI]
Z, Pronounced [ZS]
Z, Pronounced [SZ]
I, Pronounced [IE]
T, Pronounced [IT]

Scary!

I like that, actually. It gives the word a felid quality.

Osirion

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Mikaze wrote:
.....or wizened old sages pushing each other in musty old libraries.

I heard that Kezmit the Blind and Olgar the Excessively Chatty got into a knock-down just the other day over this very topic.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Renrut Werdna-Bizzaro wrote:
Prof. Tolkien wrote:
While I agree with Andrew Turner's esteemed logic (always without fail, is Master Andrew!), I believe Lord Gygax developed the word out of the Gaelic. He chose to pronounce it to rhyme with 'cow,' and so it does.

OMG!!!!!!

You always agree with him even when you don't!

Gygax also spelled Legendary with a 'j'--

Anyway, whatever Andrew Turner says, just do the opposite and you'll be OK!

Jengendary???


2 people marked this as a favorite.

How now foul Drow.

The pronunciation guide reprinted in the Dragon Compendium seems to indicate either is correct.

But if it's d-r-long o, then I can't say "How now foul drow".

Of course I COULD say...

There once was an evil young drow,
Who would murder wherever she'd go.
Her friends she did slay them,
To cause further mayhem.
She was not a nice person to know.

Cheliax

CourtFool wrote:
You pronounce it, “Power hungry 13 year old who can not use ninja because that would just be too obvious.”

ROFL

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Maps, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

For 28 years I've pronounced them to rhyme with "throw".

When I start Second Darkness I'm going to pronounce them the PF way, to rhyme with "now"...just to make them feel different, throw my players off, and remind them we're on Golarion now!

-DM Jeff


Wikipedia says:

Wikipedia wrote:
Webster's Unabridged Dictionary (1970) states: "Drow, n., [scot.]." The word is a variant of the Scots term "trow", which itself derives from the Scandinavian word "troll". The original Scottish Gaelic word is pronounced "dtrow" with a soft "dt" sound, and the original pronunciation sounds similar to "troll." The word is also found in Cornish and Welsh, with slight pronunciation differences. The race itself seems based on another dark elf, specifically the Dökkálfar of Norse mythology.

So I guess "dro" is more correct in terms of real-world etymology, but I've always pronounced it "drou".

Qadira

Andrew Crossett wrote:

Wikipedia says:

Wikipedia wrote:
Webster's Unabridged Dictionary (1970) states: "Drow, n., [scot.]." The word is a variant of the Scots term "trow", which itself derives from the Scandinavian word "troll". The original Scottish Gaelic word is pronounced "dtrow" with a soft "dt" sound, and the original pronunciation sounds similar to "troll." The word is also found in Cornish and Welsh, with slight pronunciation differences. The race itself seems based on another dark elf, specifically the Dökkálfar of Norse mythology.

So I guess "dro" is more correct in terms of real-world etymology, but I've always pronounced it "drou".

DROW=TROLL? Yummy...what will that do for our campaign histories?

DRIZZIT: HEY BABY! WANA HOOK UP?
PRINCESS LEIA OF NORWAY: EWW! I DONT DO TROLL!
DRIZZIT: YOU'LL BE BACK!


The Jade wrote:

I thought it rhymed with orange?

Being that drow are a new thing, the pronunciation of its creators, even if etymologically or linguistically innacurate, is still accurate, and I think they say dr-ow, rather than dr-owe.

Fool! Everyone knows "drow" rhymes with "bananna."

Greg Vhaun wrote:
Outside Golarion, I still think you could go either way.

I read this as "drow go both ways." Don't tell me I'm wrong! :)

Prof. Tolkien wrote:
[Stuff that's beside the point]

WOW! I'm taking a Literature class on you RIGHT NOW! And hear you are; can I use you as a resource for my essays? This is sickeningly, repulsively convenient!

Qadira RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16

Beth, I hear you callin', but I can't come home right now.
Me and the boys are playin', and we just can't find the drow...

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

T-oh-may-toh

T-ah-mah-tah

P-oh-tay-toh

P-ah-tah-tah

Here in the States, we tend say "a-bow-t" (as in the front of a ship)

In Canada, many say "a-boot" (as in foot-wear favored by Military and most Law-Enforcement Agencies)

In your own games you call the drow cheese elves if you'd like...

but in the end, WotC put the "official" pronunciation as "rhymes with how, now, cow" (see the preview to the 3.5e book "Drow of the Underdark, and the 2e FR Boxed Set)...

But again, you can pronounce any word, any way you'd like (though you may get funny looks now and then) ;-p

-That One Digitalef Fellow-

Qadira

I like cheese.

Taldor

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
The Jade wrote:
However, I gave the correct answer to the question in my above post, because I got sweet ass brains, man.

Ass Brains? Sounds like a new monster...

Osirion

Digitalelf wrote:

...

In Canada, they say "a-boot" (as in foot-wear favored by Military and most Law-Enforcement Agencies)
...

Hey! that 'aint always true, eh?

Ya hoser!

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
kessukoofah wrote:

Hey! that 'aint always true, eh?

Ya hoser!

My apologies...

I did not intend to offend any of our neighbors to the north...

-That One DIgitalelf Fellow-

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