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Some people use the word エンターティナー to mean 'entertainer'. I suspect this word comes from the English word entertainer. But the accented vowel is "ei", rather than "i". It would be a better approximation to transcribe it as エンターテイナー. Although the latter form is used, the former one is also used. How did ティ arise in place of テイ?

I had once thought of a possibility of hypercorrection, but am not sure.

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I think that it is a perfect example of hypercorrection arising from words such as フイルム. Is there an evidence it is not? –  Tsuyoshi Ito Dec 27 '11 at 2:39
    
@TsuyoshiIto If you say so, then it becomes more likely. I don't have evidence either for or against it. You brought a good example that triggered this kind of hypercorrection. –  user458 Dec 27 '11 at 3:08
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I realized that in some context, little ぃ is used as something like “weak い” instead of modifying the preceding vowel to い. For example, there is a cake product named かすてぃら which is pronounced as かすていら, and some people write “へぃ” for Edo-dialect “へい” (searching “へぃお待ち” shows 213 results). So I wonder if those who write エンターティナー pronounce the word with テイ sound or really with ティ sound. –  Tsuyoshi Ito Jan 2 '12 at 12:01
    
@TsuyoshiIto Interesting. That might be a possibility. I didn't realize that. –  user458 Jan 2 '12 at 19:38

1 Answer 1

up vote 5 down vote accepted

This answer is a more detailed version of my two comments on the question.

I do not know the origin of the notation エンターティナー, but let me give a few plausible origins.

Hypercorrection

First, I think that hypercorrection is a pretty plausible reason. For example, what was written as フイルム is now also written as フィルム, reflecting the pronunciation of the original word in English better (or at least intending to do so). If one does not know the pronunciation of “entertainer” in English, one may well think that what is written as エンターテイナー is probably more precisely written as エンターティナー, “analogously” to other words such as フィルム.

A cursory look at some of the search results for ["エンターティナー" 発音] on Google seems to give enough evidence that some people indeed pronounce “エンターティナー” with the ティ /ti/ sound.

Non-standard use of letter ぃ

Second, some people seem to use little ぃ in a non-standard way; namely, to denote a weak い sound instead of modifying the preceding vowel to /i/. For example, there is a cake product called かすてぃら. If I am not mistaken, this product name is pronounced as かすていら with /i/ sound or かすてーら with long /e/ sound, never with /ti/ sound. As an another example, some people write “へい” in the Edo dialect as “へぃ”: searching ["へぃお待ち"] on Google shows 213 results (by checking until the last search-result page). For those who employ this non-standard convention, エンターティナー is pronounced as エンターテイナー with weak イ, which reflects the pronunciation of the English word as well as (or possibly even better than) the usual notation エンターテイナー.

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