Is It Steen Or Stine? How To Pronounce Rod Rosenstein's Name There were many points of contention this week over the firing of FBI Director James Comey, including how to pronounce Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein's last name.

Is It Steen Or Stine? How To Pronounce Rod Rosenstein's Name

Is It Steen Or Stine? How To Pronounce Rod Rosenstein's Name

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There were many points of contention this week over the firing of FBI Director James Comey, including how to pronounce Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein's last name.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

There were many points of contention this week, and we're going to focus for a moment on one of them - one that we think we can actually resolve.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

The deputy attorney general - is he Rod Rosenstine (ph) or Rod Rosensteen (ph)?

SIEGEL: This week, we heard both.

(SOUNDBITE OF MONTAGE)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER #1: Rod Rosenstine.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER #2: Rod Rosensteen.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER #3: Rod Rosensteen.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER #4: Rosenstine.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER #5: Rosensteen.

SIEGEL: So which is it?

CORNISH: Well, our intrepid producer, Selena Simmons-Duffin - that's pronounced Simmons Duffin - went to C-SPAN and found this old clip from a 2008 press conference.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

ROD ROSENSTEIN: Good morning, I'm Rod Rosenstein, U.S. attorney for Maryland, and I'm very honored to be here on behalf of the Department of Justice.

CORNISH: There you have it folks. It's stine - Rosenstein.

SIEGEL: We should note that this is a constant issue for people with last names that end in S-T-E-I-N, including mad scientists.

(SOUNDBITE OF FILM, "YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN")

MARTY FELDMAN: (As Igor) Dr. Frankenstein.

GENE WILDER: (As Dr. Frankenstein) Fronkensteen (ph).

FELDMAN: (As Igor) You're putting me on.

WILDER: (As Dr. Frankenstein) No, it's pronounced Fronkensteen.

SIEGEL: If you're not sure, a good rule of thumb is this - with surnames or words that are from German, E I is pronounced I.

CORNISH: Like Einstein.

SIEGEL: And I E is pronounced E.

CORNISH: Like Siegel.

SIEGEL: Of course, there are always exceptions.

(SOUNDBITE OF FILM, "FUNNY GIRL")

BARBRA STREISAND: (As Fanny Brice, singing) Nicky Arnstein, Nicky Arnstein, what a beautiful, beautiful name.

SIEGEL: Beautiful maybe, but not consistent with the rule.

CORNISH: So never assume. Always ask the person with the stein...

SIEGEL: Or the stien.

CORNISH: ...How they say their name.

SIEGEL: To recap once more.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

ROSENSTEIN: Good morning, I'm Rod Rosenstein.

SIEGEL: That is how the deputy attorney general says his name.

(SOUNDBITE OF ADRIAN ROLLINI AND THE ORCHESTRA SONG, "LET'S CALL THE WHOLE THING OFF")

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