The debate on whether we should keep kratom legal or not isn’t the only one that revolves around this Southeast Asian herb.
Another never-ending and rather heated debate is on the topic of correct kratom pronunciation. If you go online and search for it, you’ll find numerous discussions where people try to determine what the right kratom pronunciation is. Yet, none of them is able to reach a definite answer.
So, delve in and find out how to pronounce kratom once and for all!
How to Pronounce Kratom?
The two most common ways to pronounce kratom are “KRAY-tum” that rhymes with “Tatum” and KRAH-tum that rhymes with “atom.” The Oxford Dictionary states both ways. People of Asian origin, however, pronounce it as kra-TOM which would rhyme with “a Tom”.
While much more uncommon, some people Americanize the local kratom pronunciation and say Kra-TOME or Kray-TOME instead.
The confusion around kratom pronunciation is due to the rules of vowel pronunciation in the English language. According to the rules of English pronunciation, the “KRAY-tum” version would be the correct way.
Yet, kratom isn’t an English word and, as we know, many foreign words do not comply with the standard rules of English phonetics. “Bon voyage” that we frequently use is one of such examples.
Pronunciation also can differ based on different regions and dialects. In addition to that, there are multiple words in the English vernacular that have different ways of pronouncing them. For instance, “data”, “status”, “route”, “either”, and more. Yet, they do not impede our ability to communicate effectively.
Ultimately, it does not really matter important how you pronounce kratom as long as those around you can clearly understand you.
Many kratom enthusiasts also emphasize that it is also unnecessary to correct how others pronounce kratom as it may cause unnecessary conflict. Unless it’s completely off of course. But even in such instance, it’s best to correct respectfully or not say anything at all.
Other Names of Kratom
Kratom isn’t the only name that this beneficial tropical herb has. Its scientific name is Mitrogyna speciosa. You may sometimes see M. speciosa which is an abbreviated version of that.
“Mitragyna” refers to mitragynine, the primary alkaloid in kratom, yet the origin of this name is unclear. Meanwhile, “speciosa” means “brilliant”, “spectacular”, “impressive”, or “splendid.” That’s quite an accurate description, isn’t it?
While in the West we refer to the plant as “kratom”, people in Southeast Asian countries also call it “ketum”, “biak-biak”, “thang”, and “kakuam”.
How do you pronounce kratom? Do you have any reason why choose this specific pronunciation?