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English Language Accents (American, Brit, Aus)

 
Ugly Redneck
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Originally posted by Marcus Green:

"Araind abait a thaisand painds" => "Around about a thousand pounds"
Planet royalty or what!



I love that squishy accent that some British have. I have been trying to develop it meself but its hard.
The other nice accent is the Scottish slang. Like the one that Fat Bastard of Austin Powers has.
"Cum hither to yer muther cusyer father dis ne wan ye"
- "Come here to your mother 'cos your father does not want you"
 
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I'm from Joisey.
That said, I have some serious doubts as to whether anyone in Jersey has ever actually said the word "Joisey"...
Just a quick survey out of curiousity: Have you ever met someone from NJ with a Joisey accent?
 
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Originally posted by Sriraj Rajaram:
I love that squishy accent that some British have. I have been trying to develop it meself but its hard.
Squishy !?!
 
slicker
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Have you ever met someone from NJ with a Joisey accent?
Nope. Born & bred in tri-state area. Never heard it. I think it more from the old days when my folks were going up and the ethnicity in surrounding areas was different.
 
Leverager of our synergies
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Jason: Coming from southern New England, the accent where I'm from lies midway between a New York accent and a Boston accent. We speak quickly, run our words together, and drop most of our r's when they immediately follow a vowel. So a sentence like "What are you looking at?" comes off sounding like "Whudahyoulookinat?". The Boston and northern New England (swamp yankee) accents are quite a bit different sounding to me.
When I lived in the UK (Suffolk), I was told by some of my Brit friends that I was easier to understand with my accent than many other Americans were.


This is called "non-rhotic accent" and it is more common in British English than in American:



We will use the term accent for varieties of a language distinguished by pronunciation, opposing it to dialect,which applies to varieties distinguished by grammaror vocabulary. The most important accent distinction in English concerns the sound we represent as /r/.Most speakers in the BrE family of dialects have a non-rhotic accent: here /r/ occurs in pre-vocalic position, i.e. when immediately preceding a vowel, as in run or area, but not in post-vocalic position, after the vowel of a syllable. For example, in a non-rhotic accent there is no /r/ in any of the words in [1] (as pronounced in isolation):



The words in [i] all end in a vowel sound, while those in [ii] end in a vowel followed by just one consonant sound; note that the letter e at the end of the words in [ib] and of torque in [iia], and also that before the d in [iib] are ‘silent’ – i.e. there is no vowel in this position in the spoken form. In many of the non-rhotic accents such pairs of words as mar and ma, floor and flaw, or torque and talk are pronounced the same. A non-rhotic accent is thus one which lacks post-vocalic /r/.

Most speakers in the AmE family of dialects, by contrast, have a rhotic accent, where there is no such restriction on the distribution of /r/: all the words in [1] are pronounced with an /r/ sound after the (final) vowel, or (in the case of stir and term) with a rhotacised (‘r -coloured’ vowel sound, a coalescence of /r/ with the vowel.

The English spelling systemreflects the pronunciation of rhotic accents: in non-rhotic
accents post-vocalic /r/ has been lost as a result of a historical change that took place after the writing system became standardised.
"The Cambridge Grammar of The English Language", Chapter 1, pp. 13-14.


[ July 28, 2004: Message edited by: Mapraputa Is ]
 
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Whatevuh.
 
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I believe that the reason the UK has a higher variety of accents is that accents develop through communities growing in isolation. By the time US, Aus, NZ etc etc were colonised, transport links between communities were common and of course settlers in those places tended to move around a bit (hence giving the US or Aus/NZ more homogenous accents).

Where I was at uni in Stoke in England there is clearly identifiably several different commonly used accents seperated by just a few miles:

1) Stoke accent
2) 20 miles north - Manchester (flater shorter vowels)
3) 20 miles west - Welsh accent (indescribably sonorous!)
4) 20 miles south - Birmingham (perculiar accent that makes many a non-Brumnmy giggle = "Beuurmingg - uhm")

I now live in Australia, where for the bulk of the population there are really only 2 identifable accents:
1) Urban/educated
2) Rural (MUCH more nasal)..

Interestingly enough before moving to Australia I had no idea about a NZ accent - but now its dead easy to fake, simply swap vowels around(This casues much confusion between NZ/Aus and is central lots of trans-tasman humour):

Aus: Sex = NZ: Six
Aus: Six = NZ: Sux
Aus: Fish = NZ: Fush

"oh yeeeir, thits fintustuc".

The classic aussie mimic of an NZ accent is to say "Fush & Chups".. but actually this kind of extreme vowel distortion is only very pronounced in the southern end of the South island.

oh - and English isnt the only language that suffers from incomprehensible accents - I spent a few months learning to speak Spanish before trekking in the Peruvian Andes and got scared when I couldnt understand a word said by the stewardesses on the Colombian flights to get over there... I managed OK in Peru and by the time I left could happily converse with most Spanish speaking locals on a variety of topics (although using no doubt rudimentary and incorrect grammar). When I got back on the Avianca flight I was totaly unable to understand even the simplest instructions by the crew ("Chicken or Fish?", "glass of wine?"... etc etc) It seems Colombian accents differ massively from Peruvian!
 
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