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Does anyone have any idea why people insist on spelling "hamster" with a "p" after the "m"? It always makes MoonShadow think of furry picnic baskets.

Because that's the way it's pronounced?  --Vitenka

Eh? You mean with a silent 'p'? -- a confused MoonpShadow

No, I (and many others) pronounce the word as it is (not) spelt:  Hamp - ster.  The 'one syllable ends with m, next with s' is apparantly quite difficult to pronounce - and the 'p' just sort of creeps in and sounds more natural.  I'm sorta surprised that this isn't another English vs American spelling thing, actually.  Although the image of YogiBear? pursuing Hamtaro in order to get his pick-a-nick basket fix is an appealing one.  --Vitenka
(Would add that it's because it is s-t rather than sh or sl type sound - it's almost a full extra syllable if pronounced 'properly')

Ah - comprehension. This is actually quite interesting. Out of curiosity, what other combinations would get pauses? m-s-d ("hamsder") seems like it should. What about n-s-t? What happens if you change the sibilant, like m-z-t? Do you need the sibilant at all to cause the effect, or does Hamtaro get a 'p'? - MoonShadow

Well, can't speak for anyone else, unless you can think of examples where those combinations occur - but personally, hamsder becomes hampster if pronounced casually, and hamsder if I need to emphasise the d, hanster doesn't get the p, z seems to introduce its own natural pause - that is it *sounds* like hamzpter with a very short p, but the p is easily contracted into the z so that I wouldn't spell it that way.  No mike here so no audio files, but ham-zz-s-ter is the closest I can explain.  Hamtaro doesn't get a p (or the time of day, or anything short of a bomb) - it definitely needs the sibilant.  Consider the 'u' that gets inserted in Hamlter - Hamulter.  --Vitenka

Yes, I can hear the pause in Hamlter, but I think I've been well and truly conditioned to Fnord-out the pause in hamster and similar ^^; Oh, well.. - MoonShadow

PeterTaylor thinks he probably puts a short p in Hamtaro, although it may be more Ham-ptaro than Hamp-taro.

Hamtaro is an animated crime against humanity featuring hamsters.

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