Count me among the confused, who’ve been struggling with the correct pronunciation of “omicron” even after looking it up.

That’s partly because of the difference between ancient and modern Greek:

“Even before the pandemic, linguists couldn’t agree on what ancient Greek sounded like, other than that it often didn’t sound like modern Greek. Among scholars, there’s no consensus on how Omicron was pronounced in millennia past. Even in those days, people in different regions spoke their own dialects.

“‘There isn’t one way of saying Omicron,’ said Armand D’Angour, professor of classical languages and literature at the University of Oxford. ‘First of all, you know, we’re not there, we haven’t recorded it.’”

It’s not just coronavirus variants; the world is full of Greek-inspired words, most of which we seem to be collectively mangling.

(When it comes to the name of the coronavirus variant, the least-bad option seems to be “OH-mee-kron”, but it’s probably one of those things – like “chorizo” – where you’re always going to get corrected by someone, and can’t really win.)