Is there any convention as to how proper nouns with origins outside English should be pronounced? I have heard claims to the effect that "a proper noun can be pronounced however you wish"; is that correct?
I work in an international environment, and it is rather common for me to have colleagues with foreign names. Actually, I'm not a native English speaker either. I go by the rule: "pronounce as it would be pronounced in its original context or language".
A few examples:
Jis pronounced very differently in English, Spanish, or Dutch. For example my Spanish friends use
ja jato denote laughing in instant messages; the Dutch pronounce
ijlike the vowel sound in
The vowel sound represented by
oein English is pronounced as in
toe, but it is often used to approximate the German
Schrӧdinger). In Dutch, this same combination of letters represents a vowel sound similar to the English word
Sometimes it is not even possible to accurately represent a sound in English, instead it is replaced by some approximation. As examples you could consider many of the Hindi or Bengali names (or names from any other Indian languages for that matter).
I found this question earlier, but I think it does not answer my question as it seems to address how English names are to be pronounced by non-native English speakers.
Edit: To clarify some of the doubts expressed in the comments; I am primarily interested in personal names although a more generic guideline would be helpful. I'm an aspiring Physicist, and I often encounter standardised terminology with non-English origins.
s/alphabet/letter/. Even if there were a convention for pronouncing proper names properly, would anybody ever bother going to it? :)