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Questions about pronunciation for British native speakers Hello, from British native speakers I would please like to check the following, making a kind of survey: 1) do you pronounce "bomb" like "comb"? 2) "convey" the Cambridge Dictonary says "kənˈveɪ" but do you actually say the "o" or you say more like "k'nvei"? 3) "Friend", the "D" is strong, soft or even missing? 4) "agree" it's "əˈɡriː" but is there anyone that pronunce it like "ʌˈɡriː? 5) when you say "I can't" do you pronunce the final "T"? 6) "I asked her" do you actually say "I askt her" or maybe something like "I ast her"? 7) "nothing": do you say "nʌθ.ɪŋ" "nothinK" or "nothin'" without the final letter? last, in London and Essex is it common to say "name" pronounced like "mine" (so "nime") and so on, thus words like "cake" pronounced like "kike" ect. ? I'm not interested in what is correct and what is not, or about RP, I just wish to know how people from different parts of England pronounce these words. thank you very much for your help, I'm very keen about British accents.
Nov 19, 2016 9:11 AM
Answers · 7
I will try to answer your question as best as I can as there are quite a few regional accents (dialects) in the UK. For instance in London alone you will find the cockney (east London), north London as well as the more bland "southern" accents. So here goes: 1) do you pronounce "bomb" like "comb"? No, they do not rhyme. The "bo" in bomb is like the "bo" in bottle. The "co" in comb is like the "co" in coat. 2) "convey" the Cambridge Dictonary says "kənˈveɪ" but do you actually say the "o" or you say more like "k'nvei"? In the southeast of England the ‘o’ is contracted "k'nvei", in the north of England not. 3) "Friend", the "D" is strong, soft or even missing? It’s a bit more subtle (soft) when followed by an ‘s’ e.g. “friends” and “friendship” but never missing. 4) "agree" it's "əˈɡriː" but is there anyone that pronounce it like "ʌˈɡriː? Sorry not too familiar with the phonetic symbols but the ‘a’ in “agree” is the same sound as the “ea” in “early” a bit of an “uh” sound. 5) When you say "I can't" do you pronounce the final "T"? – In my region (Southeast/East Anglia) we always pronounce the final T. The cockney accent tends to drop the "T"s e.g. "Little" would sound like "Li-ul" but still keeps the "T" in "Can't" though it’s a bit delayed. I believe dropping the T in "Can’t" is more common to the north of England. 6) "I asked her" do you actually say "I askt her" or maybe something like "I ast her"? Again depends on the accent I would say "I ast her"? Note that the “a” in the north is pronounced very differently from the “a” in the south/south east. This is a major difference. 7) "nothing": do you say "nʌθ.ɪŋ" "nothinK" or "nothin'" without the final letter? In North London the "th" sounds like "f" so "nothing" would sound like "Nofink" to my knowledge this is unique to London. ...continued
November 19, 2016
1) No, never. 'Comb' rhymes with 'foam', 'roam' etc. 'Bomb' rhymes with 'Tom.' The sound is completely different. 2) I'd say it like it does in the dictionary. In the example they give the vowel sound is already pretty short. 3) No, the 'd' is always there when 'friend' is singular. 4) I don't think so. 5) Yes. It can be quite soft sometimes but it's always there. 6) The vowel sound changes depending on where people are from, but the 'k' sound is never omitted to my knowledge. 7) Putting a 'k' sound on the end of those words is not considered a good habit, although a few people do it. It's not held in good esteem at all. 8) I don't think so, no. I know people from those areas and what you postulate is not something I recognise.
November 19, 2016
Hi Andrea, 1) Paul got the sounds spot on, 'comb' sounds like 'foam' (or 'home' or 'Rome'), whereas 'bomb' sounds like 'Tom'. 2) Convey is generally pronounced in the way that the dictionary says, however, if the speaker wanted to emphasise the word, the letter 'o' would be pronounced quite clearly. 3) If the sentence ends in the word 'friend', the letter 'd' is pronounced fairly strongly. If there's another word after it, it can sound soft, particularly if the following word starts with the letter 'i'. 4) It's pronounced 'əˈɡriː', the start sounds like 'uh'. 5) Yes, I always pronounce the 't', but it can often sound very soft so it can be difficult for non-native speakers to pick up on it at times. 6) The difference in pronunciation would be regional, on a personal note, I tend to say 'askt'. 7) This one is probably my fault, haha, in London (especially North London as Imanuela pointed out), the 'g' at the end of words like 'thing' can often sound like 'thingk'. Most people will probably say 'nothin', but occasionally in London you will hear it ending with a 'k' sound. In Essex/Cockney accents, 'name' can sound very different to standard English, so I understand where you're coming from. I think the sound is more like 'naime' with a hard 'n' sound followed by an 'a' sound that goes up. It's hard to explain, I can try and show you.
November 21, 2016
Very interesting! Thank you.
November 19, 2016
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