Q: How do you pronounce Dervorguilla?
A: There are several spellings of this unusual Celtic name; the one above is used by the College and pronounced Der-vor-gilla – hard g as in the gills of a fish – with a slight emphasis on the ‘gil’. Here is Henry Savage on the matter – he was Master 165-72, and wrote the first known history of any college, the oddly titled Balliofergus, published in 1668:
– from Balliofergus, p.4.
He continues for another page and a half on principles of historic pronunciation in general…
The whole of Savage’s college history is online at http://www.flickr.com/photos/balliolarchivist/sets/72157625334030481/
Q: How do you pronounce Balliol?
A: Bailey’ll, emphasis on the first syllable. Not Bally-all, Ball-oil or Bailey, a la Sir Humphrey of Yes, Minister.