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Google tells me that it sounds like this:

rəˈɡālyə

Other resources say:

  • merriam-webster.com: /ri-ˈgāl-yə/
  • dictionary.com: /ri-gey-lee-uh/, /-geyl-yuh/
  • dictionary.cambridge.org: /rɪˈɡeɪl·jə/
  • macmillandictionary.com: /rɪˈɡeɪljə/
  • oxforddictionaries.com: /rəˈɡālyə/

For some reason I want to say it like this:

rəˈɡälyə

Is there anyone who knows of any communities out there that commonly mispronounce it this way?

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  • OK. Yeah I'll definitely do that, but I'd still like to know if anyone knows of any communities out there that commonly mispronounce it the way I did.
    – aa7
    Commented Jul 5, 2016 at 7:06
  • 1
    With this sort of question, it is reasonable to expect OP to offer pronunciations given by several dictionaries. Commented Jul 5, 2016 at 7:51
  • 1
    OK. Sure thing. merriam-webster.com: /ri-ˈgāl-yə/, dictionary.com: /ri-gey-lee-uh/, /-geyl-yuh/, dictionary.cambridge.org: /rɪˈɡeɪl·jə/, macmillandictionary.com: /rɪˈɡeɪljə/, oxforddictionaries.com: /rəˈɡālyə/
    – aa7
    Commented Jul 5, 2016 at 7:57
  • Oxforddictionaries.com uses IPA. It is listed as /rəˈɡeɪljə/. Commented Jul 5, 2016 at 16:50

1 Answer 1

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I don't know of any community where "rəˈɡälyə" (IPA /rəˈgɑːljə/) has become an established pronunciation (it's not listed in any of the OneLook-indexed dictionaries), so I would avoid using it, and recommend pronouncing regalia to rhyme with "Australia" instead.

Some Latinate words spelled with the letter "a" show variation between "long" /eɪ/, "short" /æ/, and a "restored" quality /ɑː/, but this is highly dependent on the identity of the specific word. For example, /ɑː/ has become standard for whatever reason in the word drama, but seems to be pretty uncommon in data (see Alex B.'s answer to "Data pronunciation: “dayta” or “dahta”?"). There are sometimes differences between dialects: e.g. /eɪ/ in dahlia is more common in British English than in American English, according to Merriam-Webster.

I found a Reddit conversation that confirms that you are not the only person who has thought of using /ɑː/ in "regalia":

  • I'm guessing you say regahlia instead of regaylia just based on your taste. Is that true?

    –asphyxiate, Wed Aug 16 23:20:56 2017 UTC

  • I do say regahlia, you're right! I was sad when I realised that azure wasn't pronounced azooooerr; some words just taste better mispronounced.

    –sushideception, Wed Aug 16 23:56:34 2017 UTC

("I have synesthesia, which allows me to taste words. AMA!", casualiama Reddit)

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