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Variants and Dialects of the English Language

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Presentation on theme: "Variants and Dialects of the English Language"— Presentation transcript:

1 Variants and Dialects of the English Language

2 Standard English, variant, dialect
Main variants of English Local Variants of English Pidgin

3 Standard English the official language of Great Britain
recognized as acceptable wherever English is spoken or understood literary and current English

4 Local Dialects varieties of the English language peculiar to some districts and having no normalized literary form

5 Variants regional varieties possessing a literary form

6 Dialects of the Standard English Language
traced back to Old English dialects Northern Western Midland Eastern Southern Lowland (Scottish or Scotch)

7 Dialects of the Standard English Language
Scottish English (the 2nd place) and Irish English – variants of English (I.V. Arnold) there is literature composed in them R.Burns (Scottish), Sean O’Casey (Irish)

8 Dialects of the Standard English Language
Dialects differ from standard English by: phonetic peculiarities grammar peculiarities lexical peculiarities

9 Dialects of the Standard English Language
Cockney – Southern dialect – the regional dialect of London [w] and [v] – wery vell [au] and [a:] – house [ha:s] rhyming slang – hat is tit for tat

10 Lexical Peculiarities of Dialects
dialect words are connected with local customs, social life, and natural conditions e.g. loch – Scottish lake, kirk – church names of objects and processes connected with farm keeping, names of tools, domestic animals and so on e.g. shelty – Shetland pony

11 Lexical Peculiarities of Dialects
emotionally coloured words e.g. bonny – beautiful, healthy-looking, loon – a clumsy, stupid person word-building patterns e.g. Irish diminutive suffixes –an, -een, -can – bohereen ‘narrow road’ bothar ‘road’ e.g. girl girleen

12 Lexical Peculiarities of Dialects
different meaning in the national language and the local variety e.g. to call – in Scottish ‘to drive’, short – ‘rude’

13 Lexical Peculiarities of Dialects
dialect words penetrate into Standard English e.g. bairn ‘child’, bonny ‘handsome’, glamour ‘charm’ – from Scottish e.g. whiskey, blarney ‘flattery’, shamrock – from Irish dialect words may be used as technical terms in literary English e.g. lug ‘ear’ – handle, cuddy ‘ass’ – jack-saw

14 Lexical Peculiarities of Dialects
dialects are chiefly preserved in rural areas in speech of the elderly used mostly for the purposes of oral communication dialects are declining in importance are used to characterize speech of personages in books

15 Variants of the English Language
British English American English Australian English Canadian English

16 Differences between the Variants
phonetic peculiarities grammatical peculiarities spelling peculiarities lexical peculiarities

17 American English regional variety of English
has its own literary standard (norms of speaking and writing) – Standard American or American National Standard

18 American English is not a separate language (H.L. Mencken)
has neither grammar nor vocabulary of its own the differences between the variants are not systematic

19 American English. Lexical Peculiarities
general English – words found on both sides of the Atlantic Americanisms – specific of present-day American usage Briticisms – typical of British English

20 American English. Lexical Peculiarities
general English e.g. country, nation, language, etc. a notion may have two synonyms used both in Great Britain and in the USA. Difference is in frequency e.g. post – mail, timetable – schedule post, timetable are more frequent in Britain mail, schedule - in the USA

21 American English. Lexical Peculiarities.Americanisms
historical Americanisms – words which retained their old meanings whereas in British English their meanings have changed e.g. fall ‘autumn’, to guess ‘think’, homely ‘ugly’

22 Americanisms proper Americanisms – lexical units denoting some realia that have no counterparts in Britain e.g. junior high school, senior high school dude ranch ‘a sham ranch used as a summer residence for holiday-makers from the city’

23 Americanisms lexical units denoting phenomena observable in Britain but expressed in a descriptive way e.g. campus ‘ grounds of school or college’

24 Americanisms partial Americanisms – polysemantic words typical of the American variant in one of their meanings e.g. pavement – ‘street or road covered with a stone, asphalt, concrete, etc. мостовая – Americanism ‘paved path for pedestrians at the side of the road’ – Briticism тротуар (Am. sidewalk) ‘the covering of the floor made of flat blocks of wood, stone, etc. дорожное покрытие – general English ‘soil’ (geol.) почва – general English

25 Americanisms lexical units that have different distribution in British and American variants e.g. to ride a bike, a horse – British to ride on the train, to ride in a boat - American

26 Americanisms differences in emotional and stylistic colouring
e.g. politician – ‘someone in politics’ – British/ derogatory meaning in American

27 Americanisms American borrowings – words which reflect the historical contacts of the Americans with other nations on the American continent e.g. ranch, sombrero, canyon – Spanish wigwam, canoe, toboggan, caribou - Indian

28 Americanisms American shortenings – produced in the USA, represent informal stylistic strata of vocabulary e.g. mo – ‘moment’, circs – ‘circumstances’, cert – ‘certainly’

29 Lexical peculiarities
usage of prepositions e.g. I start my holiday on Friday. (BE) – I start my vacation Friday. (AE) e.g. a quarter to five (BE) – a quarter of five (AE) e.g. to chat to smb (BE) – to chat with smb (AE)

30 Lexical peculiarities
word-building affixes –ette, -ee, super- e.g. kitchenette, draftee, supermarket conversion e.g. to major major blending e.g. motel=motor+hotel shortening and initial abbreviation e.g. b.f. – boy friend

31 Local Dialects of the American English
Northern Southern Midland (North Midland and South Midland)

32 Local Dialects of the American English
differences in pronunciation e.g. New York dialect – ir in bird, girl; ear in learn – [oi] – [boid], [goil], [loin] differences in vocabulary e.g. cottage cheese - Standard American pot cheese – New York City Dutch cheese – Inland Northern

33 Canadian, Australian, Indian Variants
characterized by a high percentage of borrowings from the language of the people who inhabited the land before the colonizers came lexical units denote some specific realia of the new country: local animals, plants, weather conditions, new social relations

34 Canadian, Australian, Indian Variants
local words later on may become international may have several dialects (12 in Australian) e.g. shack ‘a hut’, to fathom out ‘to explain’ – Canadian bungalow, mango, sari, jute – Indian dingo, kangaroo, boomerang - Australian

35 Pidgin (contact language)
name given to any language created, usually spontaneously, out of a mixture of other languages as a means of communication between speakers of different tongues

36 Pidgin (contact language)
have simple grammars few synonyms learned as second language rather than natively vocabulary is usually limited to 1500 words basic vowels like [a], [i], [u], [e], [o] separate words that indicate tense, usually before the verb

37 Pidgin (contact language)
origin – from the Chinese pronunciation of the business Pidgin English (Canton English) – Chinese-English-Portuguese pidgin used for commerce in Canton during the 18th and the 19th centuries

38 Pidgin (contact language)
West African Pidgin English – 17th century – English traders traded with various West African tribes

39 Pidgin (contact language)
Hawaii Pidgin English – created so that the Japanese, Chinese, Portuguese, Filipinos, as well as Hawaiians and Americans could do business e.g. akamai ‘smart, intelligent’, brah ‘brother’, boddah you? ‘Are you disturbed by this?, Howzit ‘How are you?’

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