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Sir Walter Scott back in stock

NTSU Pronunciation guide

edited April 2011 in General
I met a South African gent the other day and naturally the subject of NTSU came up. He said "What?". I said, you know the snuff, N-T-S-U. At that point he laughed...."Oh, he says, you mean Ntsu?"

"What?" says I.

Turns out what I had been calling NTSU (ie saying each letter like ABC) for the past three years is in fact a Zulu word pronounced n-tsu (almost like ensue). It was a laugh, though I felt like a bit of a dumbass.

Perhaps Pieter can confirm?

Dave (pronounced dayve, not D-A-V-E) ;-)


  • cstokes4cstokes4 Member, Moderator
    Haha, I think Pieter explained that it means "Eagle" or "Sharp" or something along those lines.
  • Nice chuckle Dave, thanks! Now I'll say it right to myself, since I'm the only person I talk to about snuff. But it makes me wonder how many other words I mispronounced that I've never heard spoken... Yikes!
  • WhalenWhalen Member
    edited April 2011 PM
    I thought it was Zulu for "ammonia"!
  • I don't think this snuff has ever come up in everyday conversation for me, but in my head I always pronounce it "nutsu". Nice to know I wasn't far off.
  • BartBart Member
    That is funny, Dave. I would have never thought it was actually pronounced as a whole word..I always thought it was an abbreviation for something.
    At work on our blueprints, sometimes the drawer puts N.T.S down in the key (standing for Not To Scale). We always joke and say it more closely resembles Not Too Sure.
  • Not as bad as pronouncing Gawith - Gaywith like a call I got from pipes and cigars.
  • Mark WMark W Member
    edited April 2011 PM
    @juxtaposer I've always wondered why people pronounce that so wierd. I've always pronounced it gaw-with, as in a dog 'gnaws' on a bone. that's the best I can explain it! lol People seem to pronounce it every other way, but the way its spelled! I've always thought that was very wierd. oh well one of those things.

    edit: leastwise the way people say it here in the US. I don't know how they pronounce it anywhere else, or the way it is supposed to be pronounced.
  • I had been saying "NIT-soo" I guess I wasn't too far off.
  • Gawith is pronounced Gah-with, at least in London it is.
    I've always said Ntsoo, as I'm in a band with a South African who knows these things...
  • I cant remember where I read it, but it is eagle in zulu. I knew it was pronounced N-TSEW but I just saw N-T-S-U so I dont sound stupid. I always pronounced Schmalzler like how its spelled then I realized its Shmal tz lair.
  • Living in Tennessee, I always thought it was Northern Tennessee State University
  • mrmanosmrmanos Member
    Old thread I know. But I’ve been curious about the pronunciation of NTSU for years. I found it means “eagle” in the local language spoken in South Africa. And the correct pronunciation is something like en to sue, N tu su. Take your pick. Reason why is I’m 1/3 through the roll I got last month from The South African Shop in England. They have a better price than the usual guys, and ship fast. Like one week to Colorado with Royal Mail Tracking.
  • I'm leaning to the sneeze pronunciation....en-choo!
  • DeezDeez Member
    Wow, I've always said N-T-S-U.
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