Linking r's - for non-rhotic native English speakers A couple of questions for non-rhotic native English speakers. Are there times when you wouldn’t use a linking r? It’s obvious that you wouldn’t use it if you make a pause between two words, but apart from that? Would there be any difference between when you spoke normally and if you recited a poem for instance?

Would you pronounce both r’s in “for our own” so that you say /fɔːraʊərəʊn/ ? (An example sentence: "Except for our own daughter")

In the sentence “Their overriding aim was to keep costs low.” I personally wouldn’t use a linking r in “their overriding” and say /ðeəˈrəʊ.vəˈraɪ.dɪŋ/ . Would you?

Would you use a linking r in “their original” in this line from a poem?:
The leaves return to their original illusion.

You don’t have to answer all my questions. Just answer what you feel like.
Thanks a lot for your participation!

Apr 11, 2017 5:51 PM
Comments · 7

I am from London.  I would always use the linking /r/ in general conversation when there is no reason to pause, including in all the examples you have given.  I don't think this rule is variable.  

Perhaps I might add pauses if I wanted to enunciate something particularly clearly e.g. if there was a communication problem or in a very formal presentation to a large group of people.  The loss of the linking sound would happen because of extra pauses between words. If one dropped linking /r/s, one would usually sound false and unnatural.  

April 11, 2017

The answer is yes to all three. Michael summed it up nicely. When I speak at normal speed 'for' gets reduced to fə/.

April 11, 2017
Phil: Interesting - I wasn’t aware of this phenomenon in English. This is actually quite common in modern Danish. I myself would normally pronounce the Danish words “paragraf” and “maraton” as “pa’agraf” and “ma’aton”.
April 11, 2017

I'm certainly not an expert on non-rhotic Southern accents, but the following should work for intervocalic silent R:

Paragraph, current, curable, incorrigible, marathon, Carolina.

April 11, 2017
Phil: Thanks to you too! Could you give an example of “when phonological rules cause an intervocalic R to be analyzed as syllable final”?
April 11, 2017
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