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In Stargate Atlantis, they creatures called Iratus bugs (what the Wraith evolved or mutated from), how do you pronounce 'Iratus', is it like I-RAT-US, E-RAT-US or E-RATE-US ? Because I've heard it pronounced all three.

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I'm not able to dig through actual SGA episodes at the moment to find how it's pronounced in the show, however:


  1. "Iratus" is an actual Latin word, the perfect passive participle of īrascor ("be angry, be in a rage").
  • Latin generally has two pronunciations, ecclesiastical, the pronunciation of the Catholic Church, and classical, how the Romans actually spoke it. Ecclesiastical is well understood, but classical is more conjecture. ee-RAH-toos would be the pronunciation in either one...there is no controversial sound in that particular word. ee-RAH-toos SOOM - "I'm pissed off". – Chris B. Behrens Jul 31 '14 at 15:11
  • I remember it on the show (and have always pronounced it myself) the same as the propworx video – Izkata Jul 31 '14 at 23:12
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    @ChrisB.Behrens: actually, there are many more pronunciations for Latin. There are traditional pronunciations specific to German, English, and actually most European languages. Using the traditional English pronunciation is not incorrect when speaking in English, and is often standard, depending on the word and field of use: (legal Latin in particular, like stare decisis, tends to be pronounced according to the English tradition, and so does medical Latin.) – sumelic Sep 5 '15 at 7:38
  • Did you just "well, actually" me? :) – Chris B. Behrens Sep 5 '15 at 15:55
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In the SG universes, it can often be difficult to arrive at a single pronunciation for alien terminologies. The iratus bug is just one example. If you follow the series closely, you will notice that the following important terms are all pronounced differently by different characters quite frequently:

  • Goa'uld > GEWLD, goo-UH-EWLD, GOH-uh-EWLD, GO-uh-old
  • Jaffa > JUH-fah, JAWF-uh, JAFF-uh
  • Tok'ra > TOKE-RAH, TOKE-ruh

This could be explained by the different dialects and accents of the characters speaking the names. Additionally, it could be a matter of seeing the word before hearing it (such as reading a mission report.) When this happens, you tend to pronounce the word as you guessed it would be pronounced when you saw it.

So, as it seems to be for the SG characters (or the actors), the pronunciation would be the one the speaker is most comfortable with.

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In episode 8 of season 2 (Conversion) Doctor Beckett refers to it as an "air-ay-tuss". In the same episode, Weir calls it an "air-at-tuss" and and McCay refers to it as an "ir-rat-uss".

The pronunciation on the show seems relatively flexible but as other posters have noted, the word iratus itself is a real world Latin word that means 'angry' and would be correctly pronounced (in the original Latin) as "ere-aah-tuss".

A pronunication file can be found here

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It's always problematic for native speakers of English to even approach the "original" phonetics of Latin or Greek words. Not that it is easy for speakers of other languages but most of them at least come somewhat near to the "original". That's why one can often count on a laugh among f.e. Poles, Italians, Germans etc when they hear one of those anglifications of latin and greek words.

  • This doesn't answer the question in any meaningful way. – Valorum Aug 1 '14 at 16:24
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    @Scoach, this is really more of a comment than an answer. When you get more reputation you'll be able to comment on other people's questions. Don't lose heart! We've all been through this. Can you edit your answer so that it addresses the question? Then you may get upvotes, and enough reputation that you can leave comments in the appropriate place. – Matt Gutting Aug 1 '14 at 16:39

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