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Authentic Sauna Blog

Progressive Insurance Actually Pronounces Sauna Correctly

I did a double take the first time I saw it. Sauna is pronounced incorrectly in the U.S.

so often, that when you say it right people often don’t know even what you’re talking about.

“Had a great SOW-nah last night.”

“I’m sorry, come again?”

“SOW-nahs.

They’re great.”

“What?”

“SAH-nah.”

“Oh, yes, I love those.”

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20 thoughts on “Progressive Insurance Actually Pronounces Sauna Correctly”

  1. I too had to take double take on the pronunciation of the word sauna (sow-na). As you can see from my maiden name that I am of Finnish heritage and am constantly trying to correct people who dont ( always gently) know how to say this word. The director of this add must be Finn or married to one.

  2. I, too, was somewhat floored by the correct pronunciation of the word. I have had sauna in my life since the very beginning and being 99.99+% Finn, I have spent a great deal of time correcting those who’d dare challenge me on this word. C’mon people, it’s the only Finnish word in the English lexicon. Let’s get it right. I also agree… gotta be a Finn on the crew.

  3. IT’S ABOUT TIME that someone has made it a definite point to stress the PROPER pronounciation of this typically butchered word on such an exposed level!
    Kudos to those responsible.
    Now if they could start work on HELsinki!

  4. So the guy mispronounces sauna and you people cheer? If that’s your idea of a correct pronunciation you must be confused. This isn’t Finland and we don’t speak Finnish. We don’t say “toe-motto” either not because we don’t know how some pronounce it, but rather because it sounds HORRIBLE to the ear. I’m afraid “sow” (like OUR word for a pig) plus “na” sounds even worse. Needless to say I won’t be calling Progressive any time soon. Their irritating “Flo” commercials will be their downfall.

  5. Finnish people, and some who live in areas where ancestors of Finns once lived, may pronounce it “sow-nuh.” Most Americans in other parts of America say ‘saw-nuh.” The great and horrible thing about American English is that it evolves and continues to evolve. Its why we have conversations about whether it’s ‘ad-ver-TIZE-ment” or ad-VERT-iss-ment’; HAIR-ass-ment, or ‘ha-RASS-ment’.

    American English has many words taken from many languages, but rarely do we prounounce and/or use the same inflection that the word’s original language assigned it.

  6. He was actually pronouncing it as one would say it in Spanish, which is the same as in Finnish. Did you hear the last part where he said “No mas pantalones?”

  7. I’m not a snob or a Finn but I pronounce sauna correctly and I flinch when I hear it pronounced in the usual American way. I’ve been friendly with a family of Lähteenmäkis for as long as I can remember and have passed some very pleasant time sweating my cares away in their sauna. I’m SO glad to hear this correctly pronounced…I think it’s quite progressive!-D
    Also, the evolution of language is a fine thing; the degeneration of language saddens me.

  8. It’s excellent to hear the word SAUNA pronounced correctly! Thank you to Progressive for being — PROGRESSIVE!

  9. Sorry, but to pronounce sauna as “sow-nuh” is about as silly as pronouncing Los Angeles the “correct” Spanish way of “low-zh ong-hell-lease”. We’re not in Finland (nor Spain) friends.

  10. To pronounce sauna as “sow’nuh” is about as silly as pronouncing taco as “tahko.”
    Oh. Not a good example.

    About as silly as pronouncing pizza as “peetsa.”
    Oh. Another bad example.

    About as silly as pronouncing genre as “zhahn-ruh”
    Oh. Darn.

    Maybe pronouncing sauna as “sow-nuh” isn’t silly?

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