Southerly by David Haywood

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Southerly: Overheard on a Bus

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  • Rob Hosking,

    The 'wee' thing doesn't seem geographically based, but I'm fairly sure its a Scottish import.

    Not the Glaswegian, street brawling, Billy Connolly-profane type of Scots: more the genteel, Presbyterian cold churches and gingerbread, highland dancing sort of Scot.

    South Roseneath • Since Nov 2006 • 798 posts Report Reply

  • Rob Hosking,

    Now, here's one I'm sure someone here will have insight on:

    Mondee, Tuesdee, Wedsdee....etc.

    I pronounce it this way myself, never thought about it until recently when someone queried it.

    A brief google shows its identified in the US mostly (but not totally) with the South - I'm damn sure I didn't get it from there, I got it from my father's side of the family, who are predominantly Devon/Cornwall English.

    South Roseneath • Since Nov 2006 • 798 posts Report Reply

  • David Haywood,

    Now, here's one I'm sure someone here will have insight on:

    Mondee, Tuesdee, Wedsdee....etc.

    I don't know if this is a very profound insight, Rob, but the Queen also pronounces the days of the week that way...

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 864 posts Report Reply

  • Rob Hosking,

    I don't know if this is a very profound insight, Rob, but the Queen also pronounces the days of the week that way..

    Ahh,

    So its a Kraut thing, then.

    South Roseneath • Since Nov 2006 • 798 posts Report Reply

  • Bob Munro,

    The 'wee' thing doesn't seem geographically based, but I'm fairly sure its a Scottish import.

    Not the Glaswegian, street brawling, Billy Connolly-profane type of Scots: more the genteel, Presbyterian cold churches and gingerbread, highland dancing sort of Scot.

    Billy Connolly: A Wee Afghani

    Christchurch • Since Aug 2007 • 418 posts Report Reply

  • Jackie Clark,

    I don't know if this is a very profound insight, Rob, but the Queen also pronounces the days of the week that way..

    . Angela d'Audney always pronounced the days of the week thus. The intimation, to me anyway, are that broadcasters in that day and age - in NZ, Australia, and Britain - were taught to speak BBC English, and so the posh speak of the Queen and her ruling classes is the source of it.

    Mt Eden, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3112 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd,

    It's standard U-speak, as documented by Nancy Mitford.

    As it happens, my late Mum went to Epsom Girls Grammar a year or two ahead of Angela D'Audney and also pronounced the days like that; thus I associate it with ex-EGGS girls of a certain age.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2906 posts Report Reply

  • Bob Munro,

    A study is underway on why we talk like we do.

    Koiwi eccent studied

    A question that has long baffled linguists is how New Zealanders came to speak in such a distinctive dialect of English so soon after the arrival of British migrants in the 1840s and 50s....

    ...Edinburgh University physicist Richard Blythe said the hundreds of migrants to New Zealand arrived with different dialects, but people were speaking in just one within 50 years.

    The first generation of immigrants did little to change their speech, but their children started to adapt in a way that was still not totally understood.

    "At the time this dialect arose there would have been between 100,000 and one million people living in New Zealand. With that big a number, it would be impossible for all the inhabitants to meet each other."

    Christchurch • Since Aug 2007 • 418 posts Report Reply

  • Bob Munro,

    Christchurch • Since Aug 2007 • 418 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler,

    Q: Just me, or is the only time anyone says anything sounding remotely like "__fush an chups__" when they're explaining how New Zealanders pronounce fish and chips?

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 2968 posts Report Reply

  • Bob Munro,

    Yes. It's only when Austruckingfallians try to mimic our accent that you hear it.

    Christchurch • Since Aug 2007 • 418 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    ...Edinburgh University physicist Richard Blythe said the hundreds of migrants to New Zealand arrived with different dialects, but people were speaking in just one within 50 years.

    Umm. Physicists? Did they get on the wrong bus or something?

    Since Nov 2006 • 6145 posts Report Reply

  • Bob Munro,

    There's some eye watering formulas and calculations in the actual report.

    Christchurch • Since Aug 2007 • 418 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Yeah I get the maths guys. Just wondering why that headed over to physics.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6145 posts Report Reply

  • Bob Munro,

    Yeah I get the maths guys. Just wondering why that headed over to physics.

    What’s physics got to do with it?

    A large part of physics involves the study of how things move - planets around a sun, water down a pipe or electrons in a solid, for example. Here we’re looking out how linguistic utterances flow around a population of speakers. Particularly relevant to the formation of New Zealand English is the fact that initially many different variants of, for example, vowel sounds, were in use by different speakers, but ultimately, very similar variants were used by almost the whole population. According to the empirical study mentioned above, this happened very quickly - over 50 years, or roughly two generations of speakers.


    Our contribution has been to take specific models of language use and see if they can explain this rapid pace of change in the population of 100,000 to 1,000,000 speakers living on the islands between 1850 and 1900. The mathematical methods used have much in common with the physics of gases, liquids and solid where you have large numbers of particles and try and predict the behaviour of the system as a whole given the (statistical) tendencies of its constituents.

    Christchurch • Since Aug 2007 • 418 posts Report Reply

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