I’m only on the first chapter of Dominic Lieven’s The End of Tsarist Russia: The March to World War I and Revolution, but I can already tell it’s going to be one of those books I’ll recommend to people for years to come — I have to pause after just about every paragraph to think about what he just said and integrate it with what I already (thought I) knew. At any rate, one of his footnotes said “On the background to all the issues discussed in this paragraph, see A. Rose, Zwischen Empire und Kontinent: Britische Aussenpolitik vor dem Ersten Weltkrieg (Munich, 2011), esp. pp. 279–99 on Anglo-American relations,” and I was waylaid by the word Empire, which I didn’t recall seeing in a German context (the normal word for ’empire’ being Reich). The burning question was, how is it pronounced? It wasn’t in my pocket Bantam dictionary, so I went to the big gun, the Harper-Collins Unabridged (900 pages, weighs enough to stun a small bear with), and found it. I found it twice, in fact:
Empire 1 [ãˈpiːɐ] nt -(s), no pl (Hist) Empire; (~stil) Empire style.
Empire 2 [ˈɛmpaɪə] nt -(s), no pl (British) Empire.
So I guess since the referenced title appears to be about the British Empire, it would take the second pronunciation, which is essentially the English one (as opposed to the first, which is French). But this is an odd situation; can my German-speaking readers confirm for me that there are two (rare) words Empire with different pronunciations depending on whether the empire in question is British or not?