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Thread: Canadian Accents

  1. #1
    Cyburbian Seabishop's avatar
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    Canadian Accents

    Being an American I think I know a Canadian accent when I hear it - "How you beeen, eh?" But is my assumption right for all of Canada? Its a big country, are there different Canadian accents in different parts of the country? (French speakers aside)

  2. #2
    Cyburbian nerudite's avatar
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    Definitely a difference in various parts of the country. The most distinct to my ears (other than Quebec for obvious reasons) is a Newfoundland accent. Here in Alberta (and the other Prairie provinces), words like 'about', 'out' are pronounced like "oat" to some degree, instead of the "aboot" you are probably more used to in the eastern portion of the country. Another word that everyone pronounces differently is the name "Calgary" believe it or not. I grew up learning something akin to CAL-ge-ry. But some people (who are wrong, dammit!) pronounce it cal-GAR-y. Freaks me out (I mean 'oat' ). Here is an article on distinguishing english-speaking accents... has Canada down pretty well.

  3. #3
    Cyburbian Seabishop's avatar
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    Thanks. Its an interesting site, although I have to guess at some of the pronounciations.

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    Cyburbian zman's avatar
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    The best part is when Canadians try to sound American.
    In British Coloumbia last summer, one guy we hung out with would do this. It was so hard for him not to say, "eh"

    <disclaimer> I'm not making fun of Canadians. I have family in Montreal and love being in the Great White North. RUSH RULES! <disclaimer>
    You get all squeezed up inside/Like the days were carved in stone/You get all wired up inside/And it's bad to be alone

    You can go out, you can take a ride/And when you get out on your own/You get all smoothed out inside/And it's good to be alone
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  5. #5
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    Definately different. I always thought I really didn't have much of an accent until I moved to Texas and people said they couldn't understand what I was saying. I was told it was because I don't emphasize syllables as strongly as people from the east coast do. For example, to me, Calgary is pronounced more like cal-gree.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally posted by nerudite
    ... words like 'about', 'out' are pronounced like "oat" to some degree, instead of the "aboot" you are probably more used to in the eastern portion of the country...
    Incidentally (and slightly off topic, I guess), a 'typical' accent from the North of England, and particularly Yorkshire, tends to use 'owt' (from 'ought' meaning anything) and 'nowt' (from 'nought' meaning nothing). In the area where I grew up, which until county reshuffles in 1974 was on the Yorkshire/Lincolnshire border, we use(d) 'oat' and 'noat'. I've run into the use of 'owt' and 'nowt' in the more northerly parts of the Midlands region, but there seems to be no use of 'ought' and 'nought' derivatives in the South and South West regions or England at all. Scotland allegedly uses 'oot' and 'noot', although I'd imagine there are regional differences within the country. I don't know about Wales and Ireland.
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