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“Apizza” for Pizza and Pronounced “Ah-BEETS”

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Jodie in Norfolk, Virginia, reports that a new restaurant there serving New Haven-style pizza is called District Apizza, pronounced “ah-BEETS.” The word apizza is a remnant of the language of Italian immigrants who settled in Connecticut, from la pizza, and its two-syllable pronunciation is the result of apocope, the lenition (weakening) or elision of a final vowel. For the same reason, some Italian-Americans pronounce prosciutto as “pro-ZHOOT.” This is part of a complete episode.

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