(WYTV) – The Nevada caucuses were held this past weekend, but how exactly do you pronounce Nevada?
Is that Ne-VAD-duh or Ne-VAH-duh? This controversy isn’t a new one.
People in the state have accused presidents George W. Bush and Michelle Obama of mispronouncing the name.
The subject is so sensitive to Nevadans that Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval sent a text to former Ohio governor John Kasich when Kasich was running for president in 2016, telling him the correct way to pronounce the state.
An associate history professor at the University of Nevada in Las Vegas, Michael Green told The New York Times that Ne-VAD-duh is the standard way people in Nevada pronounce their state.
If you say Ne-VAH-duh, everyone will know you’re some kind of foreigner.
The reason for the confusion may be that Nevada is a Spanish word. It means “snow-capped” and the correct pronunciation in Spanish is Ne-VAH-duh.
After northern and midwestern settlers began to immigrate there in the 1860s, the hard “a” sound in Ne-VAD-duh began to prevail.
In 2010, a state legislator from Las Vegas brought up a bill that would have officially made Nev-AH-da an acceptable alternative.
The bill went nowhere.
Using the Spanish pronunciation will get you funny looks in Nevada, especially if you’re a politician.