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I came across such a sentence (‘Cakes and ale: or the skeleton in the cupboard’):

She looked no older than when last I saw her six years before.

And I stumbled over this ‘no older’ reading it aloud (just as an articulation exercise). Should it sound /əʊəʊ/? I doubt it. Or is it just /nəʊɒldə/? By the way, I can't pronounce the former one without pausing on a little bit.

  • Thanks a lot, BoldBen! I'll memorise this difference in BrE and AmE meanings too. 👍 And did I have to put a comma before 'too' in my sentence, according to BrE? – Artyom Lugovoy Oct 22 '19 at 10:11
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    It seems to me possible to separate the two o's by a glottal stop or a w. – Greg Lee Oct 22 '19 at 10:12
  • @GregLee: intrusive w! Sounds interesting. :) – Artyom Lugovoy Oct 22 '19 at 10:15
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    @ArtyomLugovoy I'd agree with Greg Lee. I think a slight 'w' sound exists at the end of the word 'no' in many British accents, though I think absent from a lot of Scottish accents (we're probably doing the glottal stop because our 'o' sound can be quite different, though I'm afraid I haven't the terminology to explain the difference). So it might be less that a 'w' is inserted than that a trailing 'w' from the 'no' becomes more perceptible when followed by another similarly sounded 'o'. – Spagirl Oct 22 '19 at 10:27
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    The 'w' isn't really intrusive, just a slight moving of the lips towards that position, unlike in a single word such as "hour" and would only be present when talking quite fast. – Weather Vane Oct 22 '19 at 10:29

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