The right accent "bookend" or "bookend"?

The majority of people relating to book publishing or bookbinding, say "bookend" – and wonder what someone puts the accent in this word otherwise. At the same time, many non-specialists believe that the right emphasis – "flyleaf", and a different pronunciation of the word seems to them "strange".

Differences on the stress in the word "flyleaf" is, even the authors of the authoritative dictionaries of the Russian language. For example, in pronouncing dictionaries, edited by Avanesov or Zarva as a normative given the only option of "bookend" with the accent on the first syllable. But the explanatory dictionary Ephraim (and other directories) specifies as the correct options and "flyleaf" "flyleaf".

Thus, the correct positioning of the stress on the "O" in the first syllable should not be in doubt. But is it permissible to say "bookend" with the accent on the "A"?

In doubtful cases, "the final word" belongs to the publications included in the approved list of dictionaries that govern the use of Russian as the state language. Such publications belongs to the pronouncing dictionary, edited by I. L. Reznichenko. It as a normative given the only option of stress – "flyleaf", and the pronunciation of "bookend" is separately specified as incorrect.

Thus, the "bookend" with the accent on the first syllable is the only strictly normative pronunciation, correctness of which is not in doubt. In the decline of the word "bookend" in the singular or in the plural, the accent will remain unchanged.

Форзац ударение и склонение слова

Why often say "bookend" with the accent on the "A"

The word "bookend", as a printing term, it's in Russian language from German (Vorsatz) and literally translated means "before the text". This word indicate a double sheet of paper which is glued to the inside of the front cover and holds the cover with the main part of the book (book block).

In German the accent in this word falls on the first syllable and preserved in a Russian accent "bookend". Too often, however, when borrowing occurs shifting the emphasis: in many "germanisms" accent according to the rules of the Russian literary language is on the last syllable. For example:

  • circular,
  • route
  • fireworks;
  • the time trouble.


Happened the transfer of the accent in words ending in "-AC":

  • the paragraph
  • ersatz.

These words created a kind of "fertile soil" in order to phonetically similar word "bookend" the emphasis on the last word sound more familiar and natural. However, the professional vocabulary in terms of pronunciation is often more conservative – and probably that is why the final "Russification" of the word "bookend" hasn't happened yet.

Most likely, in the coming decades the emphasis of "flyleaf" will be recognized as valid, and even then it will supersede the version of "bookend" (as it happened with the word "paragraph"). But this has not happened yet, and therefore, according to the rules of the Russian language, the accent of the word "bookend" should be put on the first syllable.