‘Chin-den’ or ‘Shin-den': How Do You Pronounce This Street?
It’s 2021. Any and everything is up for argument and debate in the comments section. Does pineapple go on pizza? Argue in the comments. Drums or flats when it comes to chicken wings? Debate in the comments. Did Ross cheat on Rachel, or were they on a break? Battle it out in the comments. But the latest greatest debate I have seen online is about a street right here in Idaho.
Scrolling through Instagram, Hello Meridian posed the question to locals regarding the pronunciation of the street name having heard both. One user who called themselves a lifer, said it is pronounced “Chin-den” as it is short for Chinese Gardens and “when Boise was being settled it was the ‘outskirts’ where the Chinese immigrants lived and worked.”
I posed the question at work to co-workers who have lived in Boise for some time. One said “Chin-den,” and the other said “Shin-den.” When I asked her reasoning, she explained that she took a history course about Idaho that told how various names here (like Coeur d’Alene) are derived from French pronunciations. So Chinden has the “sh” sound, like how you would pronounce Chateau.