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  1. National Pronunciation Variants of English



New Zealand

South Africa



British Isles




Eastern American Pronunciation

Western American Pronunciation

Southern American Pronunciation

nglish is the mother tongue of a few nations. That's why it has national variants. These variants have very much in common. But they also have some peculiarities of pronunciation.

16 Lecture 26.12.11

Principle Differencies Between Received Pronunciation and General American

In the US there may be distinguished 3 types of cultivated speech: the Eastern type, the Southern type, the Western type (General American, referred to as the standard pronunciation of American English). Though many linguists doubt that there is a standard pronunciation in the United States, General American pronunciation has the greatest acceptability and prestige in the US.

Received – General Am.

Territory – terri'tory

com'municative – communi'cative

The main difference in the accentual system of General American is that in polysyllabic words with the primary stress on the 4th syllable from the end particularly in words ending on 'ary', 'ory', 'ony', 'ative'. There is a weak secondary stress on the 1st syllable of the suffix. In received pronunciation the vowel in the suffixes is usually reducd to the neutral /ə/ or dropped out.



ate /et/ - /eɪt/

tomato /təma:tɜu/ - /tə'meɪtɜu/

schedule /'ʃedju:l/ - /skedu:/

The pronunciation of words in General American follows the analogical principle, it's enclosure accordance with general reading rules.

On the whole linguists suppose that the most important system between British and American pronunciations is intonation. British intonation has wider melodic curves and more rapid changes. That's why the speech of an Englishman sounds adraft, explosive and manneristic to the Americans, while American speech sounds unemotional, dry, hesitating and monotonous to the Englishmen. The most important differencies are the following:

  1. Statements

The situation is intolerable.

The general idea: the tune begins low, rises to a high level with the nucleus and then steadily falls down.

  1. General Questions have a rising tone in General American if a polite form is necessary

Will you have tea with me?

  1. Special Questions

In both pronunciations they have a falling tone.

When is he coming?

  1. Polite Requests. In received pronunciation usually a rising tone is used. And fall-rise is used only when speaking to children.

Hurry up!

In General American casual requests are used with the falling tone which in received pronunciation suggests a strict command.

I can't bring the letter to the car park.

What's the news?

I've got you.

(К отмеченным курсивом предложениям прилагаются схемки произношения. Позже перерисую и вышлю)