Wednesday 10 August 2011


Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch is a village in Wales. However, the name was only invented in 1860 as a publicity stunt to attract tourists. In Welsh it means St Mary's Church in the hollow of the white hazel near to the rapid whirlpool of Llantysilio of the red cave. Locals often just call it Llanfairpwll.

If you want to know how to pronounce it I have (with much technical wizardry) embedded an MP3 of a rather beautiful song by a chap I was at university with called Nick Kelley. At about the 1:45 mark he manages to not only sing the word, but also make it rhyme twice. The relevant lyrics are:

I'd take the low road to keep you
From the monsters of the loch.
Would you follow me if I got in trouble
all the way to Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwll-

However, if you want a less artificial place name, you should pay a visit to Mamungkukumpurangkuntjunya Hill in Australia, which apparently means, Place where the Devil Urinates.

The Infernal Urinal


  1. Try Taumata­whakatangihanga­koauau­o­tamatea­turi­pukakapiki­maunga­horo­nuku­pokai­whenua­kitanatahu in New Zealand.

    The summit where Tamatea, the man with the big knees, the climber of mountains, the land-swallower who travelled about, played his nose flute to his loved one.

  2. Let's face it, aren't all ames artificial in one way or another..? They were not, by scientitific means, labeled at first creation..
    More artificial names still are the ones changed 100% to allow for easier pronounciation in english, such as Cymru to Wales.