[Talk-nz] Place names

Rhys Macdonald rhys.macdonald at protonmail.com
Fri Nov 12 06:51:56 UTC 2021


In principle I agree with what Kyle wrote about the purpose of the name:en tag. However, I expect that for many places in New Zealand, there is no clear answer to which spelling should be used. For example, both "Taupō" and "Taupo" appear to have significant usage in online news media. Are there any verifiable ways to determine this?

‐‐‐‐‐‐‐ Original Message ‐‐‐‐‐‐‐

On Friday, November 12th, 2021 at 19:19, Lynn Rawiri <lynnoftawa at livekiwi.com> wrote:

> > On Nov 12, 2021, at 6:45 PM, Mike Kittridge mgkittridge at gmail.com wrote:
> >
> > Just because a word is used in English-language media doesn't mean that it's English.
> >
> > The example Kyle used (when saying it made no sense) was name=Taupō + name:en=Taupo. Correct me if I'm wrong, but Taupō is the Te Reo word for the English name Taupo.
>
> It seems that many (if not most) of the people involved in this thread are not New Zealanders. But fortunately I am :-)
>
> “Taupo” is, of course, a Maori name. Following the European settlement of New Zealand, Maori was given a written language (it had no written language before this), initially with the same orthography as English - making no distinction between short and long vowels. For decades, this name was written - in both English text and Maori text - as “Taupo”. Starting around the 1980s or 1990s, however, the Maori language changed its orthography to mark its long vowels with a macron - so that in Maori-language text, it would now be written “Taupō”. (As an aside, some Maori iwi (tribes) did not adopt this new orthography; instead, they indicate length using doubled vowels, and would instead write this name “Taupoo”.)
>
> Recently, many people have begun using the Maori orthography even when writing the names in English (which, of course, has never used diacritics to distinguish between short and long vowels). And, as has been noted, the New Zealand government has recently used the Maori orthography when designating ‘official names’ for many of these place names. But in English text, you now see these place names spelled both with and without macrons. (In signage, they are still usually spelled without macrons; “Taupō” being perhaps the most notable exception.)
>
> LynnOfTawa
>
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