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BS: English as taught in Nordic countries

Tunesmith 11 Aug 20 - 11:08 AM
Mrrzy 11 Aug 20 - 02:09 PM
Jos 11 Aug 20 - 02:28 PM
Tunesmith 11 Aug 20 - 02:52 PM
The Sandman 11 Aug 20 - 03:04 PM
Mr Red 11 Aug 20 - 03:40 PM
Jack Campin 11 Aug 20 - 04:29 PM
meself 11 Aug 20 - 04:46 PM
Allan Conn 11 Aug 20 - 04:48 PM
Allan Conn 11 Aug 20 - 05:12 PM
Jos 11 Aug 20 - 05:46 PM
Joe_F 11 Aug 20 - 06:05 PM
Rapparee 11 Aug 20 - 06:21 PM
Steve Shaw 11 Aug 20 - 08:44 PM
Manitas_at_home 12 Aug 20 - 01:52 AM
Black belt caterpillar wrestler 12 Aug 20 - 05:23 AM
Jos 12 Aug 20 - 06:30 AM
Steve Shaw 12 Aug 20 - 07:34 AM
Jos 12 Aug 20 - 08:41 AM
Steve Shaw 12 Aug 20 - 09:58 AM
Bonzo3legs 12 Aug 20 - 10:16 AM
keberoxu 12 Aug 20 - 10:42 AM
meself 12 Aug 20 - 10:55 AM
Charmion 12 Aug 20 - 12:01 PM
leeneia 12 Aug 20 - 12:31 PM
Jos 12 Aug 20 - 12:37 PM
Jos 12 Aug 20 - 12:47 PM
Doug Chadwick 12 Aug 20 - 01:13 PM
Jos 12 Aug 20 - 01:44 PM
leeneia 12 Aug 20 - 02:56 PM
meself 12 Aug 20 - 03:24 PM
Howard Jones 12 Aug 20 - 03:51 PM
Murpholly 12 Aug 20 - 04:28 PM
Nigel Parsons 12 Aug 20 - 04:51 PM
Steve Shaw 12 Aug 20 - 05:16 PM
leeneia 12 Aug 20 - 07:30 PM
Gurney 13 Aug 20 - 12:08 AM
Allan Conn 13 Aug 20 - 03:10 AM
Mr Red 13 Aug 20 - 04:48 AM
Howard Jones 13 Aug 20 - 06:42 AM
Jos 13 Aug 20 - 07:53 AM
Mrrzy 13 Aug 20 - 08:13 AM
Jos 13 Aug 20 - 08:40 AM
Steve Shaw 13 Aug 20 - 09:09 AM
Doug Chadwick 13 Aug 20 - 09:20 AM
Nigel Parsons 13 Aug 20 - 10:40 AM
meself 13 Aug 20 - 10:42 AM
leeneia 13 Aug 20 - 01:03 PM
Charmion 13 Aug 20 - 01:39 PM
Jos 13 Aug 20 - 02:33 PM
Senoufou 13 Aug 20 - 03:16 PM
The Sandman 13 Aug 20 - 03:52 PM
Charmion's brother Andrew 13 Aug 20 - 06:46 PM
Backwoodsman 14 Aug 20 - 12:59 AM
Senoufou 14 Aug 20 - 04:01 AM
Mr Red 14 Aug 20 - 04:34 AM
Senoufou 14 Aug 20 - 05:54 AM
keberoxu 14 Aug 20 - 12:18 PM
leeneia 15 Aug 20 - 02:14 PM
meself 15 Aug 20 - 02:33 PM
Tattie Bogle 15 Aug 20 - 08:34 PM
Allan Conn 16 Aug 20 - 10:58 AM
Tattie Bogle 16 Aug 20 - 06:51 PM
HuwG 17 Aug 20 - 05:33 AM
meself 17 Aug 20 - 10:54 AM
Backwoodsman 17 Aug 20 - 11:57 AM
leeneia 18 Aug 20 - 05:30 PM
HuwG 19 Aug 20 - 08:24 AM
leeneia 19 Aug 20 - 11:03 AM
leeneia 19 Aug 20 - 11:14 AM
Jos 19 Aug 20 - 12:12 PM
Steve Shaw 19 Aug 20 - 08:01 PM
leeneia 20 Aug 20 - 11:18 AM
McGrath of Harlow 20 Aug 20 - 11:47 AM
Monique 20 Aug 20 - 12:17 PM
Steve Shaw 20 Aug 20 - 12:23 PM
BobL 21 Aug 20 - 01:55 AM
Doug Chadwick 21 Aug 20 - 03:44 AM
McGrath of Harlow 21 Aug 20 - 10:43 AM
Mrrzy 21 Aug 20 - 10:46 AM
leeneia 21 Aug 20 - 11:24 AM
Joe_F 21 Aug 20 - 09:28 PM
McGrath of Harlow 22 Aug 20 - 01:59 PM
Thompson 23 Aug 20 - 02:44 AM
leeneia 23 Aug 20 - 03:10 PM
Thompson 23 Aug 20 - 03:13 PM
meself 23 Aug 20 - 11:28 PM
Thompson 24 Aug 20 - 04:45 AM
keberoxu 25 Aug 20 - 09:55 PM
Mrrzy 26 Aug 20 - 11:27 AM
Charmion 26 Aug 20 - 11:41 AM
leeneia 26 Aug 20 - 12:57 PM
Charmion's brother Andrew 27 Aug 20 - 11:02 AM
meself 27 Aug 20 - 02:42 PM
The Sandman 27 Aug 20 - 04:30 PM
Mr Red 30 Aug 20 - 06:38 AM
Steve Shaw 30 Aug 20 - 07:05 AM
Thompson 30 Aug 20 - 07:37 AM
Mr Red 31 Aug 20 - 03:04 AM
Thompson 31 Aug 20 - 04:31 AM
Mr Red 01 Sep 20 - 03:23 AM
Doug Chadwick 01 Sep 20 - 04:58 AM
Mrrzy 01 Sep 20 - 04:13 PM
Mr Red 02 Sep 20 - 03:09 AM
Jos 03 Sep 20 - 02:25 PM
HuwG 03 Sep 20 - 04:26 PM
leeneia 05 Sep 20 - 08:35 PM
Steve Shaw 06 Sep 20 - 05:07 AM
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Subject: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Tunesmith
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 11:08 AM

When learning to speak English in schools in Nordic countries, what version of the English accent is taught? BBC English(RP)? American English? And, is the accent taught standardised throughout the school system i.e. dictated by education authorities.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Mrrzy
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 02:09 PM

As an embassy brat, it was my experience that all English [as a foreign language] classes taught in any European school system taught European, that is British, English. I remember losing points for spelling things the American way. No idea if Nordic countries do it any differently...


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Jos
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 02:28 PM

I have seen American spellings in communications sent out to parents by teachers in an English school. If the teachers teaching our children don't know the difference what hope is there for people trying to learn English as a second language?


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Tunesmith
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 02:52 PM

Of course, European children will probably learn English English in the classroom but then pick up so much American English via movies and popular music. I was talking to a young German woman in London recently and she used the word "gotten", and was then surprised when I told her that that word isn't used in the UK.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: The Sandman
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 03:04 PM

however it occurs in[ ill gotten gains]


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Mr Red
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 03:40 PM

I have seen American spellings in communications sent out to parents by teachers in an English school.

Word spellchecker? Browser? People don't know so they trust them, and don't know to install the right lexicon. My Firefox steadfastly refused to spell in English. But you can install English (United Kingdom) or remove it. But despite moving American down (not default) but you cannot remove it.

As I understand it, gotten was common in one area in the UK, I think West Country, and that is how it has gotten to America. I would say - think Mayflower, but reality there is not strictly West Country. And doesn't it come naturally to a tutophone?


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Jack Campin
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 04:29 PM

"Gotten" used to be in Scots - Burns used it. I've never heard it here, though.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: meself
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 04:46 PM

I used to play the tutophone in my primary school band - but nothing came naturally to it - other than your basic 'toot'.

'Gotten' is certainly common, if not standard, in Canadian English. Our grammatical guides always insist that it is archaic, at best, and to be tolerated only in that spirit in which one tolerates a peculiar old relative, but in actuality, it is very widely used. By me, anyway. Maybe Charmion will chime in.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Allan Conn
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 04:48 PM

Gotten is used in the Scottish Borders all the time. I suspect throughout much of the rest of Scots speaking Scotland too. Simy not true to say it isn't used in the UK.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Allan Conn
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 05:12 PM

Saying that I remember when working for LS Starett in Jedburgh in the late 70s we had a Norwegian youngster called Nils work with us for a few months supposedly to immerse himself in English. He spoke standard English well when he arrived but after a few months we had him saying A'll see ee at eer houss at hauf seeven.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Jos
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 05:46 PM

Like 'gotten' there is also 'proven'. For example, where I would say that something has proved useful, people in North America or Scotland, and maybe Ireland, might say that it has proven useful.
I would use 'proven' as an adjective, for example when describing something as 'a proven remedy'. There, 'a proved remedy' would be clearly wrong.

And then there is the Scottish legal verdict: Not proven.
This was described to me as meaning 'We know you did it but we can't prove it.'


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Joe_F
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 06:05 PM

"Gotten", in AmE, is the regular past participle. "Got", however, survives in "have got" as a strong form of "have". "I have gotten several complaints about you" introduces other people's complaints; "I have got several complaints about you" introduces my own complaints.

"Proved" is the regular English past participle. "Proven" originally belonged to the Scottish "preve" (prove, proven), but because of the familiarity of the Scottish verdict "not proven", it has wormed its way into English & American English.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Rapparee
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 06:21 PM

We have noticed an American accent used in Norway and Iceland.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 08:44 PM

"This woman has to be gotten to a hospital."

"A hospital? What is it?"

"It's a big building with patients, but that isn't important right now..."


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Manitas_at_home
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 01:52 AM

I've used "gotten" all my life though not very often. I don't know where I picked it up from.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Black belt caterpillar wrestler
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 05:23 AM

When I was at primary school we were discouraged from using the word "got", never mind "gotten". It was seen as poor english.

Robin


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Jos
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 06:30 AM

Discouraging the use of 'got' could have been to encourage you to use, for example, 'I have' instead of 'I've got', or to expand your vocabulary - using 'acquired' or 'obtained'.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 07:34 AM

"I have a brand new combine harvester and I'll give you the key..."


...Nah, doesn't work...


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Jos
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 08:41 AM

"I've gotten a brand new combine harvester and I'll give you the key..."
doesn't work either.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 09:58 AM

"I've taken ownership of a brand new combine harvester and I'll give you the key..."

Nearly but not quite...


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 10:16 AM

“English as tuppence, changing yet changeless as canal water, nestling in green nowhere, armoured and effete, bold flag bearer, opsimath, eremite, feudal, still-reactionary: Rawlinson End.”


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: keberoxu
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 10:42 AM

Skarpi? We need your opinion on this one.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: meself
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 10:55 AM

When I was a kid, collecting and trading baseball and hockey cards was popular among boys. In the schoolyard, there would often be one boy shuffling through his collection, and one or two potential traders watching carefully, and, as the cards were briefly shown, saying, "Got it - got it - got it" - until, eventually, "Don't got it!", at which point a trade might be considered.

I don't recall our teachers ever trying to enforce it, but there was a discouragement of 'get/got' in the old grammar/usage/style guides. It seemed to be considered vulgar, perhaps in part because of its Biblical sense.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Charmion
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 12:01 PM

My first husband was Norwegian. He was taught enough British-style English in school to launch himself into becoming truly fluent, starting with Mad magazine and Gibbon's stamp catalogue and evolving through every imaginable form of pop culture -- especially British football on television and in newspapers -- to a PhD in political philosophy at the University of Toronto. His spoken English was mid-Atlantic, with mixed British-American-Canadian vocabulary and Norwegian articulation. He was equally fluent in French, and his Swedish and German were only marginally less perfect.

As for "gotten" -- how else can you be misbegotten, or have ill-gotten gains? Variant dialectical form strikes again!


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: leeneia
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 12:31 PM

American English, especially Midwestern English (or so they say) preserves archaic forms because the majority of English immigrants in early times came from Protestant regions north and east of London where people simply talked like that. There's a name for that region, but I can't recall it.

gotten
proven
hidden
snuck
mad, meaning angry
leapt (pronounced lept)
swam
dreamt (pronounced dremt)

There are probably more. In England this is considered 17-Century language.
==============
"I've got" is standard. "I got" to mean "I have" is not standard. However, "I went to the grocery store and got a pound of apricots" is okay, because here "got" is the past tense of get, not of have.

I used to have a neighbor who was an avid gardener, and one day her little daughter said to me, "She gots too much plants." Cute!


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Jos
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 12:37 PM

Well, getting and begetting are not quite the same thing, are they?


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Jos
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 12:47 PM

Is 'swam' seventeenth-century and archaic? I know there are people who would say 'we swum in the river', but they mean either 'we swam' or 'we have swum'.
Similarly, people say 'the ship sunk' instead of 'the ship sank' or '... has sunk', or '... has been sunk'.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Doug Chadwick
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 01:13 PM

............
hidden
snuck
mad, meaning angry
leapt (pronounced lept)
swam
dreamt (pronounced dremt)

There are probably more. In England this is considered 17-Century language.


Not in this part of England.

I hate 'gotten'; I would accept but probably not use 'proven"; I might or might not use 'snuck'; the rest are just ordinary, everyday words that I would use all the time.

DC


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Jos
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 01:44 PM

Leeneia, what do you imagine English people say instead of "hidden" if, according to you, we consider it to be archaic 17th-century language.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: leeneia
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 02:56 PM

That was just a guess. Wrong, apparently.

I've remembered the place. East Anglia. Is that actually a district, or is it a sort-of region, like the Midwest?


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: meself
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 03:24 PM

"I hate 'gotten'" - I wouldn't recommend Canada as a travel destination, then. You'll be very unhappy here.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Howard Jones
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 03:51 PM

England is too small to distinguish between districts and regions. East Anglia is a distinctive part of the country, but it's only about 150 miles from London to the Norfolk coast. In that journey you'd pass through at least four areas with with recognisably distinctive accents and dialects (Estuary English, rural Essex, Suffolk and Norfolk), and countless more local variations which are probably noticeable only to locals or experts in language. When people moved around less, there was a noticeable physical difference between "pudden-head" Angles from Suffolk and Norfolk and "coffin-head" Saxons from Essex.

I grew up in Essex (not far from where the Mayflower pilgrims gathered) and I use all the words Leeneia listed, with the exception of "snuck", which I think of as American usage rather than associating it with the 17th century. I'd use "mad" in the sense of being angry but not quite the way Americans do, as a direct alternative to angry, but in phrases like "so-and-so drives me mad".


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Murpholly
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 04:28 PM

I went and putten putten when I should have putten put.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 04:51 PM

I grew up in South Wales, and have gotten used to using most of these words.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 05:16 PM

Let's just celebrate the diversity of the English language, go with the flow and revel in the colour and character of our speech, wherever in the world we live. I'll always rail against ignorant degradation, such as alternate for alternative and disinterested instead of uninterested, and against the downright pretentiousness of horrors such as albeit, prior to and on a daily basis. Otherwise, English is simply wot English speakers speak, and to hell with the grammar police.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: leeneia
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 07:30 PM

Right on, Steve. Several years ago I found a library book with a title something like "Forms of the English Language." It was remarkable, describing much-altered English from all around the world, places where I'd never assume English was spoken. (I am not talking about pidgin.)

The author took the passage from the Bible where Jesus drives devils out of a man and into some swine, and then he showed how it reads in all these languages. I remember that one form used "sens" for "chains." Sens doesn't look similar, but when read aloud it seems quite reasonable.

I tried to find the exact title of the book, but no soap. Our public library is closed, so I can't just go to the 420's and see if the book is still there.

Discovering these forms of English is like discovering long-lost cousins around the globe.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Gurney
Date: 13 Aug 20 - 12:08 AM

I was looking at my Collins dictionary, and they have a list of consultant professors in the cover page.
Australian, British regional, Canadian, Caribbean, East African, Indian, Irish, New Zealand, Scottish, South African, West African. BUT not American. Nor yet Nordic.   It is a 1993 printing.

The general consultant is/was a Brummie.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Allan Conn
Date: 13 Aug 20 - 03:10 AM

Re Doug's comments about the list of supposed archaic words. That they are mostly just everyday words in his part of England! I'd say exactly the same in regard to here in Scotland too. For instance the word "mad" is used all the time to mean "angry". Sometimes just itself or often some other word to accentuate if further. For example "hopping mad".

Concise Scots Dictionary - gives various definitions of the word mad including - infuriated, besides oneself with rage, angry, annoyed.

Just a very common everyday word.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Mr Red
Date: 13 Aug 20 - 04:48 AM

what about instantiate ?

In my immersion into computer programming over more than 40 years - I had never come across it. It seems to be rather recent and specific to programming.
It means, FWIW, the act/process of setting the precedent. In programming - of declaring (in some way) the variable. I always declare, but even if you don't it can be instantiated by giving it a value (the first time you do). Until then it is not found or null or in some way a bug.

Value can be anything like text or an object (think filing cabinet)


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Howard Jones
Date: 13 Aug 20 - 06:42 AM

In my experience, most Europeans speak English with an accent which comes from their own language. I know some who have lived in Britain for decades and are fully fluent, but who speak with a French or German or Italian accent. The most difficult professional relationship I have had, in terms of intelligibility, was with the manager of a Japanese business in Scotland whose accent was a mixture of Japanese and Glaswegian. I usually had to ask him to put the matter in writing.

For the relatively few for whom this is not the case, I would say they usually speak with an American rather than British accent. The influence of American films, music and TV is too strong. For that matter, American usage is increasingly common among young British speakers. One that particularly irritates me is the use of "alternate" instead of "alternative" which loses a useful nuance.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Jos
Date: 13 Aug 20 - 07:53 AM

What irritates me is the use of 'post' instead of 'after' or 'since'. It is alright as a prefix, such as postwar, but not on its own as a separate word.

I recently discovered why people keep using 'impact' as a verb in place of 'affect' - it is simply because they are confused between 'affect' and 'effect' so they just use 'impact' instead.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Mrrzy
Date: 13 Aug 20 - 08:13 AM

Beware of incorrect past tenses that have snuck into the language is from the same place as Avoid clichés like the plague.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Jos
Date: 13 Aug 20 - 08:40 AM

Somehow, 'snuck' sounds much more sneaky than 'sneaked'.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 Aug 20 - 09:09 AM

I suppose you used "alright" on purpose, Jos... ;-)

But what's with all this "pre" malarkey? You don't book or order. You pre-book and pre-order. You can even pre-sell your book on Amazon!


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Doug Chadwick
Date: 13 Aug 20 - 09:20 AM


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 13 Aug 20 - 10:40 AM

I think you may be fighting a losing battle with 'pre-book' and 'pre-order'. They seem to have filled a required niche.
They seem to cover a meaning that, because of special privilege, you are committing to buy, or book, something before it is generally available to the public.
As soon as tickets become available for the London Palladium pantomime I will book my seats. Thanks to being on their mailing list I get the option to pre-book them.
I am waiting for the next instalment of a book series to be published. Once the book is published I can go online and order a copy. Once a publication date has been established I can go online and pre-order it, or I can wait for the publication date to occur and then just order it.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: meself
Date: 13 Aug 20 - 10:42 AM

What really annoys ME is when ..........


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: leeneia
Date: 13 Aug 20 - 01:03 PM

To get back to the original question, if Norwegians are learning English with a British accent, which of the many British accents is it?
It's surprising how many there are.

I think accents are good, and they help make life interesting. However, I think we should all try to keep our English understandable to other English speakers. This may simply mean slowing down.

Recently I clicked on a video where a young Australian mother shared her child-rearing troubles in a class. I couldn't understand anything she said. To me it seemed as if she was trying to hide from the world in a cocoon of beaten-down, poverty-stricken speech. Her hair and clothes were nice, but her speech said, "You can ignore me."

I've heard Australians before, but her case was extreme.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Charmion
Date: 13 Aug 20 - 01:39 PM

Pre-book, pre-order ... pre-prepare?

No kidding. Apparently, that's what the nice people at the supermarket do when they pack up a hot meal for a customer to take home.

And military logisticians are forever "pre-positioning" things at airheads (that's a place, not a person) so they can be loaded efficiently when the strategic transport (very big airplane) arrives.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Jos
Date: 13 Aug 20 - 02:33 PM

Presumably, along with whatever accents they happen to hear, the Nordic speakers will hear ubiquitous expressions like "Just because ... doesn't mean ..." and will think it is correct because they rarely hear "Just because ... it doesn't mean that ...".


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Senoufou
Date: 13 Aug 20 - 03:16 PM

I studied Phonetics and Linguistics as part of my MA course at Edinburgh University. There were many speech therapists and TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language people) among the students, as well as many nationalities (sadly, no Scandinavians though).
We learned to represent speech using Phonetic Script, and to listen extremely carefully to various recordings of British regional accents and even other languages. Our tongues were sprayed with cocoa powder (!) and then we pronounced a certain plosive, after which a camera took a photo of the inside of the mouth, to see where our tongues had touched the palate.
There were fascinating short films of X-rayed faces of speakers, showing the most weird movements of the glottis, epiglottis etc during the speaking of, say, pharyngeal fricatives (Arabic has these). I was amazed at how enormous the tongue is, it's a huge organ!
All this is to explain that any Nordic people learning English in their own countries would probably not have access to all this fascinating stuff.
My husband now has the most complex and amusing accent imaginable. Malinke mixed with French and Broad Norfolk!


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: The Sandman
Date: 13 Aug 20 - 03:52 PM

i lived not far from howard jones and i remember one essex countryman who used the term i got to go over yonder, some year ago a mudcat member called virginia tam enlightened me that this expression was stll used in virginia usa


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Charmion's brother Andrew
Date: 13 Aug 20 - 06:46 PM

Senoufou, anyone who has dined on beef tongue can tell you how substantial the tongue is as a muscle. One beef tongue will serve five.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 14 Aug 20 - 12:59 AM

‘Over yonder’ or, more dialectically accurately, “Ower yonder”, is still commonly used in my part of the Backwoods of Lincolnshire. I say it myself.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Senoufou
Date: 14 Aug 20 - 04:01 AM

You're right Andrew. I'd seen whole ox tongues on the butcher's slab (in the fifties) but I didn't realise that the human tongue was so enormous.
Re accents, my husband only yesterday entered our village shop (we were properly masked) and bellowed, "Ahrrr yew orrlroit mbor?". (How are you mate?) He rolls his rrs as in French, implodes the letter 'b' as in Malinke/Bambara and incorporates the Norfolk 'oi' for 'i'. The shop owners always fall about laughing.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Mr Red
Date: 14 Aug 20 - 04:34 AM

aren't we confusing accent with dialect here - a lot?

The two are of course intertwined. But words is dialect. Pronunciation is accent.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Senoufou
Date: 14 Aug 20 - 05:54 AM

Absolutely Mr Red. People often talk about ' Birmingham dialect' for example when referring to the 'Brummie' pronunciation, which is, as you say, accent.
Obviously, any language will have elements of both, but they are distinct. Learners would do well to concentrate on each, because pronunciation and vocabulary are equally important in making oneself understood.
I'm very interested in tonal languages, where the raising or lowering of the voice over a syllable changes the meaning. My Chinese friend Betty Ko from Hong Kong (we became friends at University) taught me quite a bit of Cantonese, and she was always demonstrating this to me.
For instance, 'ma' on an even tone is 'mother' but on a rising tone means 'horse'! (I admit I may have got this the wrong way round - it was nearly sixty years ago!)
Sorry about all this rambling - don't get me started on languages - it's my obsession. (Have you noticed eh?)


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: keberoxu
Date: 14 Aug 20 - 12:18 PM

Skarpi . . .
heeeere, Skarpi . . .


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: leeneia
Date: 15 Aug 20 - 02:14 PM

I remembered another old American word - I guess, meaning I assume. Chaucer used it.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: meself
Date: 15 Aug 20 - 02:33 PM

My mother said that whenever Agatha Christie (IIRC) had an American character enter the story, he would very soon say, "I guess". Although I did go through an Agatha Christie binge for a few weeks one summer, I can't recall any American characters ....


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 15 Aug 20 - 08:34 PM

Just an impression, but of those Scandinavians I have either met, or seen on the telly, a fair proportion of them do seem to speak English with an American accent, but no idea if this is because they learned it that way in their home countries, or perhaps had spent some time living and working in N America.
Of course, there are a lot of Nordic words and place names used over here, especially in the more northern parts of the UK.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Allan Conn
Date: 16 Aug 20 - 10:58 AM

Backwoodsman likewise "yonder" pretty common here in the Scottish Borders too. PBasically interchangeable with the form "thonder"


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 16 Aug 20 - 06:51 PM

Often shortened to "yon" - e.g. See yon lassie? meaning See that girl over there?


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: HuwG
Date: 17 Aug 20 - 05:33 AM

Several years ago, I was at a party. A friend brought a Japanese exchange student over, and said "You must talk to HuwG. He has a Welsh accent." Someone else, who was a lecturer in the English department at a nearby university pounced on this statement and said "He doesn't have a Welsh accent. He has a Welsh intonation. His English construction isn't idiomatic."

Cue a rather acrimonious discussion, with mutual accusations of poshness and political correctness. The poor Japanese girl, whose English grammar was faultless, was nevertheless baffled.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: meself
Date: 17 Aug 20 - 10:54 AM

The lecturer clearly didn't understand the concept of 'accent', which is largely about intonation, surely, and has nothing whatsoever to do with construction, idiomatic or otherwise.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 17 Aug 20 - 11:57 AM

Isn’t ‘idiomatic English construction’ a.k.a. ‘Dialect’ rather than ‘accent?


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: leeneia
Date: 18 Aug 20 - 05:30 PM

I thought intonation was playing musical notes in tune.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: HuwG
Date: 19 Aug 20 - 08:24 AM

As I recall the argument (from at least fifteen years ago), the lecturer was insisting that I use more "indeed to goodness, look you" to be considered to speak with a truly Welsh accent. I asked what they would consider Philip Madoc (or indeed Ruth Madoc) to be. They ducked the question.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: leeneia
Date: 19 Aug 20 - 11:03 AM

Huw, it sounds to me like the lecturer had had a too much to drink. Correcting somebody's English outside of the classroom, talking of you in the third person when you were right there, joining in an acrimonious discussion at a party. These are signs that his elevator wasn't going to the top storey.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: leeneia
Date: 19 Aug 20 - 11:14 AM

I've identified another American archaism.

"Whilst you’re in Scotland it’s hard not to notice the ancient Gaelic language weaved into everyday life around you..."

An American would say 'while' not 'whilst' and 'woven' for 'weaved'.

I wonder what the deal is between while and whilst.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Jos
Date: 19 Aug 20 - 12:12 PM

I would use 'while' to mean 'during the time', and 'whilst' to mean 'whereas'.
But beware, I have heard that in some parts of England 'while' is understood to mean 'until', causing problems when motorists come to a railway crossing and see a sign saying 'DO NOT CROSS WHILE LIGHTS ARE FLASHING'.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Aug 20 - 08:01 PM

While and whilst are interchangeable and are both correct. Towards and toward, similarly. Quite often, having a pet peeve about such things puts you in the category of grammar policeperson. Use the form you're most comfortable with, and raise barely an eyebrow at usage that doesn't align with yours. Whether you like it or not, language is wot people speak, not a bunch of rules penned by professors in ivory towers. The main issue to rail against in language is degradation, losing important nuances: you're bit of a tit if you say alternate when you mean alternative, for example. Oh, and pomposity, as exhibited by persons who talk about on a daily basis, at this moment in time, prior to, albeit and going forward...


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: leeneia
Date: 20 Aug 20 - 11:18 AM

Let's not forget among and amongst. Interesting.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 20 Aug 20 - 11:47 AM

"Mean" is another word that the Americans seem to use differently. In the British Isles it's more likely to be about someone who is tight fisted, rather than hostile, or nasty (and sometimes seen as somewhat admirable for that).

Of course the American usage is understood and often enough used, but I think that's mostly because we're deluged by American movies and television from our childhood.
We don't need subtitles to follow even the weirdest American accents.

It's interesting how often the accent that journalists and such from other countries have acquired isn't English or American, it's Irish.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Monique
Date: 20 Aug 20 - 12:17 PM

"It's interesting how often the accent that journalists and such from other countries have acquired isn't English or American, it's Irish.". This rings a bell to me Kevin, though I'm no journalist. I started learning English when I was 13, so it was British English. In 1972 we were involved in a students exchange between my teachers' training school and Madeley College of Education that no long exists now. I was told "You have an awful American accent!" (it wasn't a compliment!) though I'd never heard anybody speak American in my life -nor native English either actually! I supposed at that time it was due to my strong Southern French accent that makes my vowels more open than "France French" (read "Northern"). The first time I went to the US, my friend's husband said "You sound somewhat Irish." When I went to Ireland I was told "You sound somewhat American or Canadian". The next time I asked my friend's husband he burst out laughing and said "Now you just sound French!". I suppose I have created my own brand of English!


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 20 Aug 20 - 12:23 PM

I should have added that you can't use whilst as a verb or a noun. You can only while away the hazy, lazy crazy days of summer. And you can't be suspended from Mudcat for a short whilst. Otherwise, use 'em as you please, even if you risk annoying some yanks with "whilst..."


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: BobL
Date: 21 Aug 20 - 01:55 AM

Any possible mileage in "meanwhilst"?


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Doug Chadwick
Date: 21 Aug 20 - 03:44 AM

I never use 'whilst', always 'while', but I use both 'among' and 'amongst' as the fancy takes me.

DC


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 21 Aug 20 - 10:43 AM

"Dreamt" and "dreamed" are a curious pair. They mean the same, and both seem to get used equally in my experience, but they aren't always interchangeable. It'd feel completely wrong to sing "I dreamed I dwelt in marble halls" or "I dreamt a dream in times gone by".

You can even have both variants in the same song, but even though it wouldn't change the scansion it would't work to switch them round.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Mrrzy
Date: 21 Aug 20 - 10:46 AM

I had a French friend who learned American English in the deep South, and has what is basically a French accent in Southern American English, which does not sound as much like a French accent in regular English as it sounds just plain bizarre.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: leeneia
Date: 21 Aug 20 - 11:24 AM

One day my husband and I were driving through Mississippi, and we went through a decrepit Delta town where thin black men were lounging in front of a bar. Next door was a tidy shopfront with a lettering that said "Mid-South Electric Utilities."

That's when I realized that there is no such place as the deep south. The deep south is a construct of northern journalists, because when you live in the south, it's not deep at all, it's normal. Neither is there a darkest Africa, and I don't believe there is anywhere where Yankees live. (I would not use the phrase deep south when talking to a southerner. In fact, I do not use it at all.)

There's a story told in Milwaukee of a mother and daughter who were southerners and who heard a reference to a bar up north. "We thought we were up north!" But no, there's always somewhere further north with more snow and less sophistication which is truly up north.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Joe_F
Date: 21 Aug 20 - 09:28 PM

What are the boundaries of the *mean* south?


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 22 Aug 20 - 01:59 PM

That's why your Northern neighbours sing

"The True North strong and free!
From far and wide,
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee."


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Thompson
Date: 23 Aug 20 - 02:44 AM

English and American accents have changed beyond telling in the years I've been listening to them; Katherine Hepburn's upper-class American accent is now unrecognisable to the young, who think she's an American putting on an English accent, and World War Two radio announcers sound utterly different to their modern counterparts.

So saying that Scandinavians learn Received Pronunciation - the Oxford accent that became the standard sound of the British ruling class because it was the local accent of the area where they'd gone to boarding school since the 18th century - is only partly correct.

Whatever accent they're taught in school, anyone learning English now has the use of subtitled versions of Hollywood's cultural offerings, and it's standard practice to listen to programmes first with subtitles in your own language, then with English-language subtitles, so the accent you're receiving gradually moderates into mid-Californian.

There's also a certain amount of cross-infection between Europeans who speak English as a second language; listening to these people speaking of medical breakthroughs, European law, their local earthquake or whatever on TV, I notice that no Dutch or Scandinavian second-language-English-speaker can say a sentence without adding earnestly "for sure".


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: leeneia
Date: 23 Aug 20 - 03:10 PM

I think Katherine Hepburn's "upper-class American accent" was completely fake. She was born in Connecticut, and if she had an accent, it would have been that annoying NE accent.

Possibly she spoke straightforward Transatlantic at home.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Thompson
Date: 23 Aug 20 - 03:13 PM

Wiki: "Raised in Connecticut by wealthy, progressive parents, Hepburn began to act while studying at Bryn Mawr College…"


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: meself
Date: 23 Aug 20 - 11:28 PM

My impression is that American actors of the Katherine Hepburn era and ilk were trained in a posh 'mid-Atlantic' accent.

The Canadian novelist Robertson Davies affected an Oxford accent so supercilious that a Canadian poet (Earl Birney?) claimed it made Englishmen feel "positively colonial".


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Thompson
Date: 24 Aug 20 - 04:45 AM

When silent movies ended and sound came in, English actors made their fortune teaching lads from Brooklyn and lasses from Schenectady how to speak like Englishmem and Englishwomen. But Hepburn is from a later era, and her accent was natural to her, as far as I know.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: keberoxu
Date: 25 Aug 20 - 09:55 PM

... and I'm still waiting to hear from Skarpi.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Mrrzy
Date: 26 Aug 20 - 11:27 AM

Cary Grant, the quintessential AmeriBrit accent.

I was in California and heard Phoenix, AZ referred to as Back East.


The Deep South is Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, Mississippi, and Louisiana. Not Florida, oddly enough.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Charmion
Date: 26 Aug 20 - 11:41 AM

Leeneia: "[T]here's always somewhere further north with more snow and less sophistication which is truly up north" -- We resemble that remark. Have you ever visited Brandon, Manitoba? Home of the Wheat Kings?

Katharine Hepburn spoke the dialect of the Broadway stage as it then was, designed not only to "cut the room" but also to convey an impression of languid superiority. The same dulcet tones can be heard in popular American films up to about 1945. Check out Myrna Loy and William Powell in any of the Nick and Nora Charles films, for example. The nasal element is more obvious in women's voices, perhaps to make their dialogue more audible.

It makes my ears squint.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: leeneia
Date: 26 Aug 20 - 12:57 PM

Ha! I've even been north of Brandon - to Riding Mountain National Park and parts north. I have happy memories of that trip, including when our camper-trailer came loose from its hitch and set off down the Shell Valley without us. "Holy socks!" my father cried. (Dear man.)

Friendly Manitobans seemed to come out of nowhere. Somebody fetched the local farmer, and he kindly used his tractor to get the camper out of the ditch. We stayed in a motel that night (my first time in a motel or hotel) and watched a funny show on the BBC. We laughed our heads off.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Charmion's brother Andrew
Date: 27 Aug 20 - 11:02 AM

In truth, Leeneia, the further north one travels, the less snow one gets, it's just that it starts earlier, ends later, and it's more persistent.

As for sophistication, our "speech is clean and single, [we] talk of common things—words of the wharf and the market-place, and the ware the merchant brings," but one cannot farm in a dry continental climate without some measure of it.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: meself
Date: 27 Aug 20 - 02:42 PM

I would say that Manitobans are the most reliably friendly people in Canada. Doesn't mean they don't have their share of psycho-killers - but they're friendly psycho-killers, which are the kind I like.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: The Sandman
Date: 27 Aug 20 - 04:30 PM

I am pleased to hear American spelling is not used.
The spelling of Capitalisation as used by one American [Capitalization] on this forum is in my opinion an abomination.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Mr Red
Date: 30 Aug 20 - 06:38 AM

Cary Grant, the quintessential AmeriBrit accent.

Wot? That lad from the areal of Brisel, and attended the same school as Nobel theoretical physicist Paul Dirac? Bishop Road Primary School.

And not Archie Leach's natural accent. Fer sure.

Ooh ar.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 30 Aug 20 - 07:05 AM

I always think that objections to American-English spellings carry the distinct whiff of British imperialism. Using z instead of s seems pretty logical to me, as the letter is pronounced z in the words that raise hackles here and there. And, as I understand it, many words with so-called American spellings actually began their lives on this side of the Atlantic spelled the American way. Admittedly, it would seem odd to adopt American spellings here, and teacher certainly wouldn't like it. It should be a case of when in Rome, and just enjoy life.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Thompson
Date: 30 Aug 20 - 07:37 AM

A lot of people desiring to have their writing edited on the right-hand side of the Atlantic are now saying "I want it in American spelling", but leaving lots of the word in British spelling, and when queried about an individual word "Oh, I like it better spelled that way". A bit difficult as the editor can't use an automated spellcheck set to one or the other dialect.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Mr Red
Date: 31 Aug 20 - 03:04 AM

Thompson - Purely because we are discussing pedantry ........... for dialect - read lexicon
one could have said dictionary but without the meanings that would be a misnomer too.
One reason English is so ubiquitous is that it has a rich lexicon.
The reason French is dubbed the diplomatic language (I have been told) is the smaller lexicon and the doubling-up of meanings allows it to say two things and keep two sides saving face.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Thompson
Date: 31 Aug 20 - 04:31 AM

Ah, nice! Thanks, Mr Red, I was hesitating a little over the word!


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Mr Red
Date: 01 Sep 20 - 03:23 AM

the spelling of Capitalisation as used by one American [Capitalization] on this forum is in my opinion an abomination.

well the use of zeds (never zeees) does raise my hackles. But it has to be said that English (English or American) is anything but logical. A bastard language is bound to throw such lack of spelling/pronunciation logic or consistent orthogonality.
so / though / bow / hoe / snow
cow / bow / bough / how


or even Edinburgh / Peterborough / Middlesbrough.

and don't even get me started on OZ / Kiwi use of nouns automatically as verbs ................. despite the obvious / logical / orthogonality!


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Doug Chadwick
Date: 01 Sep 20 - 04:58 AM

or even Edinburgh / Peterborough / Middlesbrough.

Loughborough (LUF-bar-a) uses 'gh' twice with different pronunciations.

DC


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Mrrzy
Date: 01 Sep 20 - 04:13 PM

Ok you asked for this. Read out loud:

I take it you already know
Of tough and bough and cough and dough?
Other may stumble, but not you
On hiccough, thorough, laugh and through.
I write in case you wish perhaps
To learn of less familiar traps:
Beware of heard, a dreadful word
That looks like beard, and sounds like bird.
And dead: it's said like bed, not bead;
Ford goodness' sake, don't call it "deed"!
Watch out for meat and great and threat
(They rhyme with suite and straight and debt).
A moth is not a moth in mother,
Nor both in bother, broth in brother.
And here is not a match for there,
Nor dear for bear, or fear for pear.
There's dose and rose, there's also lose
(Just look them up), and goose, and choose,
And cork and work, and card and ward,
And font and front, and word and sword,
And do and go and thwart and cart
Come come, I've barely made a start!
A dreadful language? Man alive,
I'd mastered it when I was five!


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Mr Red
Date: 02 Sep 20 - 03:09 AM

LOL


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Jos
Date: 03 Sep 20 - 02:25 PM

It is surprising how often I hear people talking about Saint John's wort as if it was Saint John's wart (have they never encountered 'word' or 'worm' or 'world' ... ?).


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: HuwG
Date: 03 Sep 20 - 04:26 PM

Doug Chadwick, Loughborough, pronounced "Loogabarooga" by the Australian Post Office.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: leeneia
Date: 05 Sep 20 - 08:35 PM

Huw, I think that's delightful.


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Subject: RE: BS: English as taught in Nordic countries
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 06 Sep 20 - 05:07 AM

I went to the doctor to tell him I was having trouble pronouncing my 'f's and 'th's.

He said "You can't say fairer than that, then..."


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