Questions tagged [dialects]

This tag is for questions related to mutually intelligible variations within a language.

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0answers
42 views

What does the phrase ‘back the road’ mean?

Could someone explain to me the meaning of the phrase ‘back the road’ in the following sentence: “My father still lives back the road past the weir in the cottage I was reared in”? Does it mean ‘next ...
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1answer
49 views

“Best” as a sign-off in a chat message

A new colleague of mine, a native English speaker with whom I have only communicated via text, used "Best!" at the end of a chat message. Does this signify anything to the extent of "...
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1answer
59 views

Where is this accent from?

Where does the accent used by the actor who plays Mazikeen in the Lucifer series belong to? I can tell it is American, but I don't know what region in there. Here is a scene from the series where she ...
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25 views

Does using the words “might” and “could” consecutively in same sentence have a name or is it just improper English? (spoken English) [duplicate]

It is now more than a coincidence, but I have heard numerous people from different parts of the country use the words "might" and "could" together in a sentence as in: "This ...
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1answer
113 views

Why was the word “bull” taboo in some dialects of English? What did it mean?

According to the American Heritage Dictionary in the entry for "critter", the word "bull" was once highly taboo (mainly in Ozarks). What did it mean? Why was it taboo? Does the word still hold the ...
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0answers
22 views

Is English converging or diverging in modern times? [closed]

For the entire history of the world, languages in disparate groups of people have tended to diverge, creating new languages. The many English dialects of today would likely have become different ...
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1answer
85 views

How would you transcribe and/or describe this vowel?

I'm analyzing the /æ/ vowel sound (also known as 'short A') found in words like cat, dad, or man. I am particularly interested in how that sound is realized in different dialects of American English ...
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169 views

Regionality of “scarf” vs “snarf” as in “to scarf down food”

A friend asked in a group chat who uses "scarf" and who uses "snarf". Some of us had only heard one or the other. I was reminded of the American English dialect heat maps (e.g., LINK), and I was ...
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1answer
83 views

Pronouncing “warrior” to rhyme with “lawyer” … is this a feature of any dialect of English?

I've been listening to a section of The Great Courses: Medieval History, an audiobook narrated by Kenneth W. Harl. From his accent, Prof. Harl is clearly American, with what I would describe as a ...
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1answer
57 views

Do people “make parties” in New York?

They made a party for you. Sounds plain wrong to my ears. People don't "make a party" unless their intended meaning is that they attend it, much as "I made the train this morning." However, I lighted ...
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39 views

“I'm Marsh Turner called.”

From the movie Cross Creek, set in 1920s' Florida. Marsh: I'm Marsh Turner called. This is my daughter Ellie. The syntax of this line (as opposed to the standard "I am called Marsh Turner") ...
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2answers
54 views

How often do you use 'nowadays' vs 'these days' in your dialect?

I would say that in South Africa, nowadays is rather quaint; something that perhaps Boomers and older or second language speakers would use. Unfortunately, I cautioned a student nearly a year ago ...
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1answer
87 views

Difference between “greater than” and “greater then”? [closed]

What are there a difference between the following sentences? They are pronounced the same or? Maybe it depends on the dialect? A: Are you sure 'x' is "greater than" 'y'. B: Are you sure 'x' is "...
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1answer
76 views

Is “one in the same” only a bad transcription of “one and the same”?

Trump suggested the lack of communication was justified because European countries don't inform him when they raise taxes on the US. "When they raise taxes on us, they don't consult us and I think ...
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1answer
58 views

Liverpudlian Accents and The Beatles

The Beatles all have/had a Liverpudlian accent, but it wasn't very strong, especially if you compare it to the accents of Merseyside personalities from similar backgrounds (such as Steven Gerrard, ...
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1answer
787 views

What dialect/accent in the UK do people not say the word “the”

I know a decent amount about different dialects in the UK, and usually recognize and identify them, but I heard one today that took me by surprise. I was watching a TV show, and this family, who I ...
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3answers
67 views

Could English speakers define from which country their interlocutor?

Could English speakers define from which English-speaking country their interlocutor (USA, England, Australia, Canada)?
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2answers
537 views

“Have a nap” or “Take a nap”?

I'd like to know what's the difference between: "We decided to have a nap" and "We decided to take a nap". Is it a BrE / AmE thing?
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44 views

'I about to died' — Southern vernacular?

I wonder if anyone here has ever heard this phrase, about to + past tense --- probably a dialectal variant of about + past tense. Is this America's Southern vernacular? And then the judge turned to ...
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0answers
39 views

Is the varying pronunciation of “schedule” using “sh-” vs “sk-” regional or individual? [duplicate]

‘Hard’ /ˈskɛ.djuːl/vs ‘Soft’ /ˈʃɛ.djuːl/ Is one of the two variants /ˈʃɛ.djuːl/ with ‘sh‑’ (so including [ˈʃɛ.djɫ], [ˈʃɛ.dʒɫ̩], [ˈʃɛ.dʒu.əɫ], [ˈʃɛ.dʒuːɫ]) /ˈskɛ.djuːl/ with ‘sk‑’ (so including [...
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1answer
587 views

a' the world's gang agley

Toward the close of her life she was greatly troubled at any unusual stir in the household. She liked to have company, but nothing disturbed her more than to have a man working in the cellar, putting ...
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5answers
964 views

Is cow ever the plural of cow?

I was thinking about ruminants, as you do, and I noticed that, unlike with sheep or deer, cows is the plural of cow. I started wondering why, then it occurred to me that maybe there were dialects that ...
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2answers
200 views

On the pronunciation of 's' in 'dislike' (/s/ vs /z/)

With a bit of a surprise I have recently learnt that most(all?) native English speakers pronounce the 's' in dislike (and similar words with the dis- prefix) as /s/, not /z/. However, the /z/ ...
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1answer
248 views

Is bad English called “Butler English”?

When somebody speaks bad English it is called Butler English in India. The phrase Butler English seems to have originated in Madras presidency in the British Rule. The butlers or the maid servants ...
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2answers
2k views

Is there such a thing as Intrusive-L (as opposed to Intrusive-R)?

Most of us have heard plenty of examples of the so-called Intrusive-R. It is a feature of non-rhotic dialects, including British RP and some New England dialects. It occurs between two vowels that are ...
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1answer
9k views

“I hope you all/both are doing well” vs “I hope you are all/both doing well”?

Do both convey the same message, or not? I hope you all are doing well. I hope you are all doing well. It occurs to me that the same thing happens with both when I'm only addressing two people ...
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2answers
108 views

Dialectical differences in pronunciation of the 't' sound in “it”, “its”, and “it's”?

There are many cases where different words are pronounced differently in some English dialects, but not others. A commonly cited example is -- Mary, marry, and merry. In English, the letter 't' may ...
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0answers
56 views

Are there English dialects that still use the verb “to snithe”?

Wiktionary says that it's used in some dialects in Northern England, but I wonder if that information is still up-to-date. Have you personally heard the verb being used?
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2answers
129 views

“He has been learning to swim” implicates that he doesn’t know how to swim

The Cambridge Grammar of the English Language, page 164, reads He has been learning to swim implicates that he doesn’t know how to swim Is this true for most English dialects? In my native ...
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2answers
629 views

U vs. Non-U words in contemporary British English

The Wikipedia page on U and non-U English describes the nature of these two "sociolects" and gives a number of examples in a table. What I find intriguing is that most of this examination of the ...
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1answer
103 views

Which dialect of English do people pronounce advertisement as ad-VER-tis-ment

I recently listened to an audio book in which the narrator had pronounced advertisement as ad-VER-tis-ment, and thought this was a strange way of pronouncing it, so I'm curious to know in which part ...
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1answer
112 views

What is the meaning of “whin”?

I am reading the book "1100 words you need to know" and I face with a strange sentence: “A little drummer boy grinned in me face whin I had admonished him wid the buckle av my belt for riotin’ all ...
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4answers
86 views

Does 'contact number' in BrE refer to the act of contacting or to an electrical telephone contact?

It is common in BrE to use 'contact number' where AmE would use 'telephone number'. Does the 'contact' in 'contact number' refer to the act of making contact, or is there a more technical origin, as ...
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0answers
64 views

A rural dialect for “Why”? [closed]

Forgive me if this is the wrong place to ask about this. For context, I've been trying to figure out a good way to translate "なしてや", which is a dialect of どうして and なぜ. All of them mean "...
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1answer
93 views

Debygawd Cap-en! Where does this phrase come from?

I sought out this site because I need help finding the origins of a word/phrase that my family uses. We are from Southern Maryland, USA. The exclamation in question is 'debygawd.' I do not know how to ...
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2answers
216 views

Britishism: see you fast

In Season Two Episode One of Happy Valley, the mentor constable explains to the new recruit how helpful it is to have a good relationship with the receptionist, Joyce: Oh, and get well in with ...
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1answer
171 views

schwa before /r/

Right now, Wikipedia gives the pronunciation of Sirius as /ˈsɪriəs/, but in the past I've seen editors insist on /ˈsɪəriəs/. I take this to mean that it should sound like seer, which I at least ...
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5answers
5k views

Spicket or spigot?

I recently was making a list and for the first time using a digital device, typed in what I grew up referring to an outdoor faucet 'spicket' as into my iPad. My mother grew up in Utah and my father ...
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2answers
565 views

Origin of 'cuz' as shortening for cousin?

Detailed answer please and thank you. I see this used a lot among youth. I'm interested to know whether it originated in the Southern US or not?
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1answer
41 views

Not enough ado about this and that

OK, so demonstrative pronouns and their inconsistent use across dialects. I'm South African and have noticed a quirk in some Brit and Yank usages of this and that which really cause me to break out ...
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1answer
302 views

“Frit” as dialect for “frightened” - which dialects, especially as simple past?

Out walking the other day I came across a lovely West-Country-ism from a local walking her dog - frit, meaning frightened, in "you frit him" (referring to a startled dog). The speaker sounded local (...
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0answers
104 views

How should you pronounce the word “wolf ”?

If the dictionary’s IPA for the word wolf is /wʊlf/, then why do I sometimes hear people pronounce it /wolf/ instead of /wʊlf/? Aren’t /ʊ/ and /o/ different phonemes?
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2answers
217 views

Why do we put subject and auxiliary verbs at the end of the sentence?

Why do we put subject and auxiliary verbs e.g., have, be, do at the end of the sentence? I found this kind of sentences from a fantasy book named The last apprentice by Joseph Delany. Examples: ...
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2answers
279 views

“Class, open your books TO/AT page 13!”—Is it a matter of dialectal difference?

My original notion was, A) If there's a movement and a destination (as in the case of thumbing a book to reach a certain page), it should be to: Class, open your books to page 13! B) If there's ...
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2answers
3k views

Usage of “he don't” vs “he doesn't”

Well, I listened to a song and heard it's said in the text "He don't know how to..." I think a song artist used this phrase for better sounding. Am I right? Correct me if I'm wrong, and please explain ...
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1answer
70 views

In African American dialect, is it “I like” or “I likes”?

Following the rules of African American dialect, one rule is to drop the 's' on a verb when using third person singular, i.e. "she like, he like" - my question is - for the first person singular, ...
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1answer
450 views

I pronounce question as kweshtin. Is my pronunciation wrong?

I've lived in Houston,TX for about 10 years and after that I moved to the ME and I've made friends since then. Whenever they heard me say kweshtin they told me my pronunciation was weird. I told them ...
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1answer
1k views

Southern Dialect: Word for a time of day?

I remember reading a story somewhere that a Southerner wrote about one of his life experiences. He mentioned that in the region he lived there was a time of day that cooled off a large amount in less ...
3
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1answer
111 views

Is there a linguistic term for pronouncing card as “kerd” or hard as “herd”?

I notice this in some people from Northern Illinois and Iowa and am wondering if this is a well documented phenomenon. What most Americans would pronounce as "ar" is instead pronounced as something ...
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1answer
394 views

What region(s) of the UK still use 'pint pot' over 'pint glass'?

I have noticed some colleagues refering to a pint glass as a 'pint pot'. No one else that I've spoke to is familar with this term. It appears to be regional, but I can't work out from google searches ...

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