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Wording and pronunciation of '*'
Thread poster: Mats Wiman

Mats Wiman  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 09:10
Member (2000)
German to Swedish
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Moderator of this forum
Feb 10, 2010

AFAIK, in American answering machines it's 'star key'.

In Swedish it's 'stjärna' [shairnah]= star (no 'key).

What is it in your language?

Mats


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Christine Andersen  Identity Verified
Denmark
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Member (2003)
Danish to English
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In English it is an asterisk Feb 10, 2010

... or else an asterix as in Asterix the Gaul, but it is officially an asterisk.

According to the Concise Oxford its origin is:

Middle English: via late Latin from Greek asteriskos 'small star', diminutive of aster.


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Penelope Ausejo  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 09:10
English to Spanish
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Spain Feb 10, 2010

In Spain it is also asterisk (asterisco)

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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 09:10
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
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ZA Feb 10, 2010

Mats Wiman wrote:
AFAIK, in American answering machines it's 'star key'.


Afrikaans: sterretjie (more common), asterisk (more formal)
ZA English: asterisk

The term "star key" is seldom used in ZA English, and I would not be surprised if after asking for a person to press it, he'd get the response "there is no start key here".


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Maria Castro  Identity Verified
Portugal
Member (2008)
English to Portuguese
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MODERATOR
asterisco Feb 10, 2010

...in Portuguese.

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Armorel Young  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:10
Member (2004)
German to English
star key in UK Feb 10, 2010

In a textual context this symbol is of course called an asterisk, but in my experience when it appears on a telephone handset it is usually called the star key (e.g. in those telephone banking systems that tell you to enter some particular information and then "press the star key") - I haven't ever heard "asterisk key" in the UK, although Wikipedia seems to think it is used:-

The "*" is called the "star key" or "asterisk key".
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Telephone_keypad


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Susanna Martoni  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 09:10
Member (2009)
Spanish to Italian
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Italy Feb 10, 2010

Asterisco

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Monique van Prehn  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:10
English to Dutch
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Sterretje in Dutch Feb 10, 2010

In Dutch, it is a 'sterretje', much like the 'sterretjie' in Afrikaans but without the 'i'.

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Stevi  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 09:10
English to French
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French Feb 10, 2010

étoile

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Nikita Kobrin  Identity Verified
Lithuania
Local time: 10:10
Member (2010)
English to Russian
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RU Feb 10, 2010

звёздочка, символ / знак *

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Hildegard Klein-Bodenheimer  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:10
English to German
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Deutsch Feb 10, 2010

Sternchen

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Claudia Luque Bedregal  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 09:10
English to Spanish
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Peru Feb 10, 2010

Penelope Ausejo wrote:

In Spain it is also asterisk (asterisco)


In Peru it's also called "asterisco" (asterisk)


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dkalinic
Local time: 09:10
Croatian to German
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Croatian Oct 1, 2010

zvjezdica

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Simone Linke  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:10
Member (2009)
English to German
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Deutsch (telephone) Oct 1, 2010

If we're talking about phones and answering machines here, it's "Sterntaste" in German (as opposed to the other one - # -, which is the "Rautetaste").

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Daina Jauntirans  Identity Verified
Local time: 02:10
German to English
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Star on a phone Oct 1, 2010

In the US, we also say "press star" (*) or "press pound" (#).

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Wording and pronunciation of '*'

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