Meteorologist Liam Dutton was simply explaining the intense temperature gradient across the U.K. earlier this week. While it was just 12 degrees Celsius in coastal parts of eastern England, it was a balmy 21 degrees in…
Soooo, that’s got to be a mistake, right? A rogue cat running across the keyboard? A new on-camera meteorologist getting hazed by some snarky producers?
No — this is real.
Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch is the actual name of an actual, lovely place in Wales, where earlier this week it was a pleasant 70 degrees Fahrenheit. And Dutton simply nails the pronunciation — no big deal, though it probably helps that he’s Welsh and speaks the language. I’d like to imagine that as American children learn how to spell M-i-s-s-i-s-s-i-p-p-i in grade school, Welsh kids are being quizzed on the correct pronunciation of Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch.
Llanfairpwllgwyngyll’s long-form name (which I will not be typing out again) was dreamed up for tourism when the town opened its railway station in the 1860s, according to David Barnes’s The Companion Guide to Wales. The change not only made the town the longest station name in Britain, it also became the longest place name in Europe, and the second-longest in the world. The longest place name in the world is this town in New Zealand.
Translated into English, the Welsh name is “St. Mary’s Church in the hollow of the white hazel near the rapid whirlpool of Llantysilio of the red cave.”