6

What dialect(s) pronounce humor voiced initially and non-rhotic finally (i.e., with both those features in the same dialect: the word would be pronounced something like /ˈjumə/)?

2
  • 1
    What, you mean besides Californians? :)
    – tchrist
    Sep 27, 2012 at 20:49
  • 4
    A gentleman trav'ling through Yuma / Told an elephant joke to a puma. / Now his bones bleaching lie / Under cold Western sky / For the puma had no sense of humor.
    – MT_Head
    Sep 28, 2012 at 1:00

1 Answer 1

8

New Yorkers.

Non-rhotic dialect? Yes. Dropping /h/ from /hju/-initial words? Yes. It's not just "something like" /ˈjumə/; that is the stereotypical New York City pronunciation of humor.

5
  • +1. But I'm looking for a complete list, or complete to the extent feasible.
    – msh210
    Sep 27, 2012 at 22:11
  • @msh210: It'll happen virtually everywhere, with greater or lesser prevalence. And it'll be used across a spectrum of completely facetious thru slightly self-conscious to totally natural. It's just an almost inevitable consequence of dropping the /h/ for many "lazy speakers". Sep 27, 2012 at 22:38
  • 1
    I am fairly sure that New York City is the only place where people do this systematically in the U.S., as opposed to occasional "laziness", as FumbleFingers comments. Many New Yorkers never pronounce the 'h' in "human", "humor", "huge", and so on, although they pronounce 'h's in other words. I don't know much about British or Australian dialects, so I can't provide you a list there, but there is a lot more h-dropping on that side of the pond. Sep 28, 2012 at 0:35
  • @PeterShor fyi "Non-rhoticity is featured in many accents in England, Australia, and the North Eastern region of the USA, among others." wikipedia - now just unclear how they handle the 'h' and we've almost a list
    – Em1
    Sep 28, 2012 at 6:14
  • 1
    @PeterShor h-dropping in England and "Beyond England, h-dropping accents tend to be found in newer colonies, such as Australia and New Zealand." - The Englishness of H-Dropping
    – Em1
    Sep 28, 2012 at 6:20

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.