All You Wanted To Know About The English Language But Were Afraid To Ask

Discussion in 'Evolution of Language' started by Terry Page, Mar 6, 2016.

  1. Terry Page

    Terry Page Veteran Member
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    Yes Ina we are four distinct countries a bit like a mini Europe. We also have a divided Ireland, the south of which is not included in the term UK.

    There are distinct differences between these countries probably akin to your states?. I do remember one of my Uncles expressing a distinct dislike of the Welsh and I sensed in those days there was a mutual animosity between the Welsh and the English, I came across it a few times when visiting the country in the '50s and trying to buy something in a grocery shop, whereupon the owner would pretend he couldn't speak English and lapse into Welsh.
    There were also some disturbances in the '70s - '80s when a lot of English people were buying second holiday homes in Wales.

    [​IMG]
    13 December 1979: First four arsons in Nefyn on the Llyn peninsula and Pembrokeshire. In the first wave, eight English-owned holiday cottages were destroyed within a month.
    Estate agents and caravans, as well as second homes, were targeted
    Welsh Office figures showed in 1988 there were more than 20,000 holiday homes, the majority in Welsh-speaking areas
    Sion Aubrey Roberts, then 21 of Llangefni, was jailed for 12 years in 1993 for posting letter bombs but many other cases


    Ireland is more complex, the southern Irish people who are mainly Catholic still hold some resentment I feel, though nowhere near as much as during 'The Troubles". Both my daughters frequently go to Dublin, and though the locals will jokingly say shame you are English etc, there doesn't appear to be any real malice. My brother-in-law is from Southern Ireland and has lived in England for over 40 years and I often joke with him over our differences, though nothing is serious these days it seems.

    Scotland has some or possibly many political differences with England but @Tom Locke can give you more information on Scotland
     
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  2. Lara Moss

    Lara Moss Veteran Member
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    I have no accent, maybe because I moved all over the U.S. growing up, or maybe I got it from my parents. I was told once a few years ago that I have an "educated American accent". I never really understood what he meant by that and thought he made it up. The guy was not usually one to hand out compliments but educated sounded like a good thing to me so I chose to take it that way :)

    After reading this thread, I just now googled "english accents" to see if there was something I could share here. I found some people, with english accents, comparing theirs to american accents. Low and behold, one person mentioned "standard american educated accent" (maybe it was that same guy lol). The article was interesting though. http://www.theguardian.com/notesandqueries/query/0,5753,-19039,00.html
     
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  3. Tom Locke

    Tom Locke Very Well-Known Member
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    Scotland has a number of political differences, the most obvious being that the Scottish legal system is separate to that of England and Wales. There are other things that are noticeable, such as the NHS (National Health Service). For example, prescriptions and eye tests are free in Scotland, but not in England.

    There is also something of an east-west split in Scotland, particularly between the cities of Edinburgh and Glasgow (the accents are very different, too, though the cities are only about 45 miles apart). Edinburgh is seen as a rather conservative and establishment city whereas Glasgow has a edgier reputation. While generally true, that's a bit of a simplification as Edinburgh has its rough areas (see the novels of Irvine Welsh, especially) and Glasgow has its posh bits.

    Glasgow has a substantial population of Irish Catholic descent and there is some tension between Catholic and Protestant communities, notably where the city's two big football clubs Celtic (traditionally Catholic) and Rangers (traditionally Protestant) are concerned. There is a tinge of that in Edinburgh with its two clubs, Hibernian (founded by Irish immigrants) and Heart of Midlothian (traditionally Scottish Protestant), though it's not such a big deal as in Glasgow. Supporters of Hibs and Hearts are more likely to follow from their geographical locations, Hibs in the east of the city and Hearts in the west. Heart of Midlothian, incidentally, are the only football club named after a Walter Scott novel.
     
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  4. Terry Page

    Terry Page Veteran Member
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    Here are a few bits and bobs @Lara Moss

    Picture2.jpg

    american-british-englishw.jpg
     
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  5. Tom Locke

    Tom Locke Very Well-Known Member
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    A small addendum to my "Geordie" video of earlier. People from Sunderland, about ten miles south of Newcastle, are known as "Mackems." This derives from the way that they pronounce the words "make" and "take." A Geordie will say "maayk" and "taayk" with a long a, whereas a mackem will say "mak" and "tak" with a short a.
     
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  6. Tom Locke

    Tom Locke Very Well-Known Member
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    Another example of dialect providing a name for a group of people happens in the English West Midlands, a bit closer to Terry's territory. The area to the north and west of Birmingham is known as the Black Country, so-called because of the heavy industry and pollution from the days of the industrial revolution. People from that area are known - mainly by Brummies (Birmingham people) - as Yam Yams because of the way they say "Yow am" instead of "You are." I have some friends from Wolverhampton (just under 20 miles from Birmingham) and they jokingly refer to themselves as Yam Yams.
     
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  7. Terry Page

    Terry Page Veteran Member
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    Interestingly having had prolonged conversations for a while now with @Chrissy Page on instant messaging, I have realised how much I use idioms and words that are completely foreign to Americans. I am constantly being asked what???? I am learning a lot, but not sure how much I am remembering.
     
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  8. Lara Moss

    Lara Moss Veteran Member
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    I looked perused your list of words, Terry, no knickers? I just fixed my typo…I typed knockers instead of knickers, which just happens to be a rude american slang word :D Also, my state of NCarolina has a popular dance here called the "Shag". I'll be careful when using that word now.
     
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  9. Terry Page

    Terry Page Veteran Member
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    Yes the "Brummie" accent is one of the generally disliked ones amongst the English.

    Yes the Brummie accent is one of the most disliked by the English

     
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  10. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    Hi Ken!
    [​IMG]
     
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  11. Terry Page

    Terry Page Veteran Member
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    Yes Lara interestingly knickers is not mentioned, it was more of a naughty word than panties in my generation, but it may be way out of date like me these days.

    Knockers boobs and a rack all refer to breasts in England
     
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  12. Tom Locke

    Tom Locke Very Well-Known Member
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    I reminded of when I worked in Eritrea and was out for a drink one evening with my fellow volunteers. One of them was a Canadian girl from Toronto and she was talking about some of the words we used (the other people with us were English). "Shagging" was, for some reason, one of the words that came up. It so happened that we were in a bar with loud music and a lot of people, so we had to talk quite loudly. There is a law that dictates that the music stops and everything goes quiet just as somebody says something embarrassing. So it was that she proclaimed very loudly, "I like shagging." Of course, it's probable that few, if any, of the people in the bar caught the meaning. Naturally, what she meant was that she liked the word, but the rest of us collapsed in hysterics.
     
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  13. Terry Page

    Terry Page Veteran Member
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    I see on Tumblr mentions no knickers day so maybe the word is still more in fashion than I thought.

    ooo.jpg
     
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  14. Terry Page

    Terry Page Veteran Member
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    We used to have a shag tobacco

    [​IMG]
     
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  15. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    Lol, half the time I google what you said, so be glad you don't get even more "whats". :)
     
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