After repeatedly referring to the Cochituate Aqueduct in recent posts, I was contacted by Ponkapoag scholar Jason Turesky. Mr Turesky says that the mispronunciation of the word “Cochituate” has been a pet peeve of his for some years now. “Cochituate” is an Anglicization of a Ponkapoag word that means “place of the rushing torrent” or “wild dashing brook”.
He said that the common local pronunciations of the word (koch-it’-u-it or co-tit’-u-it) are a far cry from the original Ponkapoag pronunciation (koch-i-twa’-tee). He asked that in all future posts involving the word “Cochituate” that we also include the proper phonetic pronunciation (koch-i-twa’-tee).
Mr. Turesky has apparently launched an uphill battle to lobby the towns of Wayland, Sudbury, the DCR and the state of Massachusetts to formally change all formally recognized instances of the name “Cochituate” to “Kochitwatty” (Kochitwatty Aqueduct, Lake Kochitwatty, etc). We wish him luck with his efforts but we hope he doesn’t get his hands on Quinobequin next.