Advice for pronouncing, "Colin:"

"Khalin". It is never pronounced "colon" (a punctuation mark, or part of the large intestine). Of the millions of Colins in the world, the single exception to this pronunciation is Colin Powell, who pronounces his name "Colon". Because of his media prominence all Colins suffer. There are a variety of guesses as to why he and his parents have preferred the mispronunciation, but all agree that it is clearly wrong. And all people, especially Colins, feel acutely embarrassed for him.

By the way, it appears that Colin Powell inititated a fad in naming babies: it is the 94th most commonly used name for babies in 2000, although in the general US population it is 378th. It is much more common in the UK. Let us hope that the new parents of these Colins have the sense not to model Colin Powell too much.

This is a copy of a page by Colin Purrington, a professor at Swarthmore College. You can follow that link to his page, and from there up to his home page. I have copied his html here just in case he takes down the original page.

Copyright Colin Summers 2006 and other years.