Sylvester is a name derived from the Latin adjective silvestris meaning "wooded" or "wild", which derives from the noun silva meaning "woodland". Classical Latin spells this with i. In Classical Latin y represented a separate sound distinct from i, not a native Latin sound but one used in transcriptions of foreign words. After the Classical period y came to be pronounced as i. Spellings with Sylv- in place of Silv- date from after the Classical period.
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