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Accented languages, are they less error-prone than English?

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Malcolm_Stewart, Jun 12, 2019.

  1. Malcolm_Stewart

    Malcolm_Stewart Well-Known Member

    My random thought for today!

    My first introduction to accents was when learning French in the first year of secondary school. I came across other accents when in Germany doing National Service in 1958-9. English which we're told comes from the Anglo-Saxon and Norman French does fairly well without the benefit of accents. English is also very free to taking in words from other languages, and seems to be the stronger for it. French, on the other hand, has strict rules, as does Welsh, and to me these rules seem to hinder these languages keeping up with modern and evolving usage.

    Do accents help or hinder, and does our use of the English qwerty keyboard have a bearing on what we think?
  2. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    I hadn't thought about it but English usage does make use of accented vowels, it is just that the written form doesn't make pronunciation clear, it is all down to memory and custom. This latter does of course vary across the country. I get mocked at home because these days I inconsistently toggle between short and long 'a' when I say words such as bath, path etc.

    I don't think that prescribing how the vowel is spoken impacts on the adoption of new words into the language.
    Zou likes this.
  3. SXH

    SXH Well-Known Member

    I wonder if that applies to Chinese tone rules...

    Both in this country and in China.
  4. steveandthedogs

    steveandthedogs Well-Known Member

    No idea about French, but Welsh is evolving like any other language.

  5. dream_police

    dream_police Well-Known Member

    steveandthedogs likes this.
  6. steveandthedogs

    steveandthedogs Well-Known Member

    Unlike the leavers!

    peterba and dream_police like this.
  7. Catriona

    Catriona Well-Known Member

    It would be a heck of a job finding different accents for, for example, ough in a word.

    I am tempted to ask how you know there isn't a lot of error in other accented languages. Or do you think that guarantees correct pronunciation? French, what about Franglais? Adoption of other languages into their own. Slang, new technology, modern pop music etc?
  8. Trannifan

    Trannifan Well-Known Member

    To say nothing of regional dialects - Geordie, or northern english versus southern english, Scouse, Black Country etc. Or, for France, Lingue d'Oc and Lingue d'oeil? Germany with Low German, Swabian, Bavarian etc. I'm deliberately leaving out the Slav languages!

    Catriona likes this.
  9. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    Dialect is a modification of a common language, it may be spoken with a marked accent but also contains words unique to the locale. Most language development/evolution tends to destroy dialect and move to a more homogeneous language. I remember that when I was a teenager there was huge interest in recording the spoken word from those born in the 1880-1890's who were last speakers of dying dialects.
  10. Gezza

    Gezza Well-Known Member

    Accents only start north of Watford gap
  11. Dorset_Mike

    Dorset_Mike Grumpy Old Fart

    Catriona likes this.
  12. Chester AP

    Chester AP Well-Known Member

    What about all the people (some on the AP Forum) who cannot even use an apostrophe correctly when typing in English?
    They don't have the excuse that the symbol isn't on the keyboard.
  13. Andrew Flannigan

    Andrew Flannigan Well-Known Member

    You need to send them here: http://www.apostrophe.org.uk/

    peterba likes this.
  14. steveandthedogs

    steveandthedogs Well-Known Member

    Disagree with his CDs/ CD's.

    The apostrophe there is surely to denote missing letters.

  15. gray1720

    gray1720 Well-Known Member

    You need to watch some of PeteE's vidoes - he's got a real old-fashioned south Essex accent the way they used to be.

    (not the possessor of any sort of Essex accent)
    peterba likes this.
  16. MJB

    MJB Well-Known Member

    Set in context the apostrophe is redundant in informal settings like this forum. If you're bright enough to know there should have been an apostrophe, then you clearly comprehended what was written without one.
  17. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    The problem's hardly one of underuse...
  18. beatnik69

    beatnik69 Well-Known Member

    steveandthedogs likes this.
  19. Geren

    Geren Well-Known Member

    How do you work that out? Surely if that were the case it would be C'D'ss
  20. Geren

    Geren Well-Known Member

    Also, the French might have their little language committee banning the official use of words adopted from other languages but it doesn't stop French people from using them. I spent six months in Paris and don't remember any of my pals arranging to meet up at le fin de la semaine. We all got together at le weekend!!!!

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