m the letters A, E, I, O, and U, are given the sounds of the corresponding Italian vowels; I and U are pronounced as in "hit" and "put;" and the letter A is made to represent the short U in the word "cut." In this way it is that Cashmere, correctly pronounced Cushmere, comes to be written Kashmir, and Mutun, pronounced as the English word "mutton," is written Matan, both of which, to the initiated, represent the true sound of the words. Those who have adopted the system, however, have not always employed it throughout, nor given with it the key by which it alone becomes intelligible; and the result has been that in many ways, but principally from the un-English use made of the letter A, it has tended quite as much to mislead and confuse, as to direct.
In the narrative, therefore, wherever custom has not already established a particular form of spelling, the explanation of the sound has been attempted in the manner which seemed least liable to misconception, and, except as regards the letters A and U no
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