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Celtic Perversity or English.

Acorn4 16 Jun 09 - 06:40 PM
McGrath of Harlow 16 Jun 09 - 06:51 PM
michaelr 16 Jun 09 - 07:00 PM
greg stephens 16 Jun 09 - 07:14 PM
GUEST,markhf 16 Jun 09 - 07:16 PM
TheSnail 16 Jun 09 - 08:05 PM
meself 16 Jun 09 - 08:21 PM
curmudgeon 16 Jun 09 - 08:21 PM
Sandy Mc Lean 16 Jun 09 - 08:30 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 16 Jun 09 - 08:42 PM
AlmostBlindDan 16 Jun 09 - 08:50 PM
Sandy Mc Lean 16 Jun 09 - 08:50 PM
Joybell 16 Jun 09 - 08:50 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 16 Jun 09 - 09:34 PM
meself 16 Jun 09 - 11:42 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 17 Jun 09 - 12:34 AM
MartinRyan 17 Jun 09 - 03:00 AM
Dave the Gnome 17 Jun 09 - 04:39 AM
GUEST, Sminky 17 Jun 09 - 04:56 AM
Marje 17 Jun 09 - 05:28 AM
Jim McLean 17 Jun 09 - 06:49 AM
Mr Happy 17 Jun 09 - 07:04 AM
Mr Happy 17 Jun 09 - 07:17 AM
MartinRyan 17 Jun 09 - 07:32 AM
Mr Happy 17 Jun 09 - 07:52 AM
Jim Carroll 17 Jun 09 - 08:07 AM
GUEST,Shimrod 17 Jun 09 - 08:39 AM
McGrath of Harlow 17 Jun 09 - 09:12 AM
Wolfgang 17 Jun 09 - 09:46 AM
Nigel Parsons 17 Jun 09 - 10:06 AM
Marje 17 Jun 09 - 10:25 AM
An Buachaill Caol Dubh 17 Jun 09 - 10:34 AM
Seamus Kennedy 17 Jun 09 - 11:30 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 17 Jun 09 - 12:32 PM
McGrath of Harlow 17 Jun 09 - 01:35 PM
GUEST,Paul Burke Cookieless 17 Jun 09 - 01:49 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 17 Jun 09 - 03:28 PM
Marje 17 Jun 09 - 03:30 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 17 Jun 09 - 03:39 PM
GUEST,Learaí na Láibe 17 Jun 09 - 03:53 PM
McGrath of Harlow 17 Jun 09 - 06:17 PM
GUEST,Smokey 17 Jun 09 - 06:30 PM
Seamus Kennedy 17 Jun 09 - 06:41 PM
GUEST 18 Jun 09 - 04:34 PM
GUEST,Paddy 18 Jun 09 - 05:12 PM
MartinRyan 18 Jun 09 - 05:23 PM
curmudgeon 18 Jun 09 - 05:48 PM
Stringsinger 18 Jun 09 - 06:14 PM
Declan 19 Jun 09 - 03:02 AM
MartinRyan 19 Jun 09 - 03:58 AM
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Subject: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Acorn4
Date: 16 Jun 09 - 06:40 PM

When you listen to many Irish singers, they will pronounce "th" as "t" as in "Tursday" or "Richard the Turd".

English singers will normally say "Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Tyme" in spite of the "th" in the word, but I've noticed several Irish singers doing the song that pronounce the "th" and make it "thyme".

So is it the English or the Irish who are being perverse?


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 16 Jun 09 - 06:51 PM

If you don't pronounce "thyme" as "time" you throw away the whole point of a song like "A Bunch of Thyme" (or whatever you choose to call it).

And it's the normal way of pronouncing the word anyway, in both islands.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: michaelr
Date: 16 Jun 09 - 07:00 PM

I believe it's a local thing in Ireland. Christy Moore hardly ever pronounces the "th", rather he barely hints at it. Singers from the West of Ireland that I've heard don't do that so much.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: greg stephens
Date: 16 Jun 09 - 07:14 PM

I'm not sure that I've ever heard anyone pronounce the th in thyme, whether Irish or English.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: GUEST,markhf
Date: 16 Jun 09 - 07:16 PM

Pronouncing "th" as [t] is a normal dialect feature of Hiberno-English (English as spoken in Ireland). Most speakers here do it. It's a common type of linguistic change. Moreover, [t] in Hiberno-English is generally pronounced with the tip of the tongue behind the teeth (dental) rather than further back on the hard palate (alveolar). A dental [t] can sound a lot like a "th," which is also made at the teeth.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: TheSnail
Date: 16 Jun 09 - 08:05 PM

I have fond memories of the Planxty version of Sweet Thames Flow Softly with the th pronounced. I couldn't help wondering if they were deliberately taking the piss out of the English inability to pronounce Gaelic.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: meself
Date: 16 Jun 09 - 08:21 PM

Your fond memories are different than mine - I'll have to dig that recording up and give it a listen ...

-------------------

I believe the OP's question had to do specifically with the pronunciation of "thyme", as opposed to more general pronunciations of "th" ...


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: curmudgeon
Date: 16 Jun 09 - 08:21 PM

This puts me in mind of an incident many years back when an Irish fiddler went into Uncle Banjo's music shop in Newburyport MA looking for strings. When offered a set, he said, "Nah, I'll just be wanting some tirds and farts."


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Sandy Mc Lean
Date: 16 Jun 09 - 08:30 PM

Are you sure it was "Richard the Turd"? Maybe "George da Turd." That is only to acknowledge George III as a turd of the first magntude. ;-}


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 16 Jun 09 - 08:42 PM

'Th' in German is pronounced 't', thus thaler= täler, Thiergarten= Tier..., etc.

Thyme originated with Greek thymon, the 'h' is silent in modern Greek as well.
Thyme, Oxford English Dictionary, is pronounced tyme, which is one of the alternate spellings. (They show this with that phonetic reverse e, which I don't know how to do)
Thyme, Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, is pronounced 'tim, but "also thim." (long i, thus time or thime).

Guest markhf is also correct about that feature of Hiberno-English.

'Th' is absent in Spanish, but thyme becomes tomillo, thus they don't have to worry about it.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: AlmostBlindDan
Date: 16 Jun 09 - 08:50 PM

It's just how the locals pronounce it, In Dublin, third would be pronounced "tord". Different dialects in different parts of the country.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Sandy Mc Lean
Date: 16 Jun 09 - 08:50 PM

In Gaelic the "h" is only used for lenition of the preceeding consonant.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Joybell
Date: 16 Jun 09 - 08:50 PM

A bit of a digression but there was a change in pronunciation of many words when more people became literate. For example forehead,with the "h" sounded, breeches instead of britches, herb instead of erb, often for ofen. I don't believe thyme has ever gained its "h" in speech, though.
Cheers, Joy -- who still says fored and ofen


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 16 Jun 09 - 09:34 PM

Forehead, in OED fo red. In Webster's Collegiate (American), also for ed.
(I can't do the phonetic symbols, so have approximated).
The 'h' is skipped over in both, although in the 12th c., spelling suggests the 'h' was pronounced, but unfortunately, we have no aural recordings from that time.

Often is just an alteration of oft, but in the OED often is given the prounciation, of 'n.
In this case, the OED lists a possible culprit for "of ten"- Singers. "Often used in singing." They also say that of ten is "now frequent in the south of England."
Webster's Collegiate also gives o fen; no of ten.
In other words literate people ignore the 't.'

Interesting to a trivialist like me. Hmmm, I think I will coin the term triviologist to add stature to this important study.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: meself
Date: 16 Jun 09 - 11:42 PM

You have probably noticed that "off-ten" is a common pronunciation in Alberta.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 12:34 AM

meself- That is so.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: MartinRyan
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 03:00 AM

GUESTmarkhf describes it well. A "th" sound is so unusual in a Hiberno-English speaker as to frequently merit comment - often caustic!

Regards

p.s. BTW, Q: Spanish may not have a written "th" - but the sound exists in"ce" and "ci", of course.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 04:39 AM

I am sure I have heard an Irish version that says

"Thoime brings all tings to my mind"

Maybe I dreamt it!

DeG


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: GUEST, Sminky
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 04:56 AM

It would be interesting to know how many languages throughout the world have the 'th' sound - not many I bet.

Perversely, English has two: the hard 'th' as in 'then' and the soft 'th' as in 'thin'.

The Anglo-Saxons had different alphabetic symbols to represent the different sounds (thorn and edth). This caused no end of problems for the scribes who translated Anglo-Saxon documents into Norman-French and back again.

Eventually they chose 'y' to represent both sounds; hence 'ye olde...' etc. (NEVER pronounced 'y' as in 'you').


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Marje
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 05:28 AM

I was brought up in Ireland, and my brother, who takes a keen interest in linguistic matters, says he's almost certain that the use of the "t" sound in words like "third" and "three" has become more pronounced in recent decades. It's particularly noticable in the speech high-profile Irish bands and celebrities.

It's an observable phenomenon that when a region or colony becomes independent from a mother-nation/coloniser/oppressor (however you like to put it), the speech and accent in the newly independent nation tends to veer away from the earlier speech-patterns. If you listen to broadcasts of US or Irish politicians and public speakers from, say, the middle of the 20th century, you'll notice that their accents are often more English, and less American or Irish, than they would be now.

So it's quite likely that speech habits like dropping the "th" sound, which probably originated in gaelic-speaking areas, are becoming more standard throughout Ireland (or at least the Republic), for what might be called politico-linguistic reasons, even in the speech of people who speak only English.

But pronouncing "thyme" and "Thames" with a soft "th" is just being perverse, or taking the piss, if you ask me.

Marje


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Jim McLean
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 06:49 AM

A long time ago I recorded and produced an LP by an Irish singer who shall remain anonymous. He sang Wild Mountain Thyme as 'thyme' although every other word with 'th' he pronounced with a hard 't'. I asked him, gently, why he did this. He was astonished that I'd even asked the question. To him, 'Thyme' was not a normal English word and so he pronouced it differently.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Mr Happy
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 07:04 AM

What I find really irritating is people who aren't Irish singing, for example, Christy Moore songs, & sticking in 'tree' for 'three' & so on


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Mr Happy
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 07:17 AM

just sounds ludicrous!


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: MartinRyan
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 07:32 AM

marje

Believe me, we Irish didn't wait for the English to leave before setting about their language with a linguistic axe! Given the week that's in it - try Joyce for openers...

Regards


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Mr Happy
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 07:52 AM

Like this ??

"In ward wary the watcher hearing come that man mildhearted eft rising with swire ywimpled to him her gate wide undid. Lo, levin leaping lightens in eyeblink Ireland's westward welkin. Full she dread that God the Wreaker all mankind would fordo with water for his evil sins. Christ's rood made she on breastbone and him drew that he would rathe infare under her thatch. That man her will wotting worthful went in Horne's house."

Ulysses


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 08:07 AM

"What I find really irritating........"
are people who can say "ee bah goom" and sing "On Ilkley Moor bar t'at", criticising the accents and pronounciations of others.
Wonder why "glass houses" and "stones" springs to mind?
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 08:39 AM

"'Th' in German is pronounced 't', thus thaler= täler, Thiergarten= Tier..., etc."

Exactly! So why do so many people insist on the pronunciation, 'Neander-tharl', rather than the correct pronunciation, 'Neander-tarl' for the fossil human relatives who were first found in the German Neander Valley?


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 09:12 AM

Using "t" for "th" in many words is actually quite common in England from people who aren't trying to sound Irish. And an alternative favoured pronunciation for "th" is more akin to "f".

There's a lot of variation in how people speak, and often enough we just don't notice.

Joybell said "there was a change in pronunciation of many words when more people became literate" - and that seems to be true enough - except that I'd be inclined to say "semi-literate" to describe the assumption that written English is a lot more regular and phonetic than it ever has been.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Wolfgang
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 09:46 AM

Thal is "Tal" since 1903 ("dale" is the related English word). In 1903, we dropped all h's after t's except (1) in words of Greek origin like "Theater" and (2) in "Thron" ("throne") due to an objection by the Kaiser and (3) in "Thing" (assembly of all men) which was forgotten to be changed I have heard. We never pronounce a th any different than a simple t. Of course, the old spelling remains sometimes in place names and family names.

The Neanderthaler was found before 1903, when that valley was still the Neanderthal. It now is of course the Neandertal and we call that species Neandertaler.

"Thyme" (Thymian we say) I considered for at least two decades to be pronounced as tyme only be Irish like Christy Moore whose version of Bunch of Thyme was the only I knew then. Only when I heard it sung as "tyme" by an Englishman I had a look into the dictionary.

How came it that Thyme (of Greek origin) is pronounced so differently from the many other words of Greek origin (Theater, Anthropology, rhythm, theism) or do I have to learn a new pronunciation for those words as well?

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 10:06 AM

Reminds me of the bit of business from Pirates of penzance:

GENERAL STANLEY: Tell me, have you ever known what it is to be an
          orphan?
PIRATES: (disgusted) Oh, dash it all!
KING:    Here we are again!
GENERAL: I ask you, have you ever known what it is to be an
          orphan?
KING:    Often!
GENERAL: Yes, orphan. Have you ever known what it is to be one?
KING:    I say, often.
ALL:      (disgusted) Often, often, often. (Turning away)
GENERAL: I don't think we quite understand one another. I ask
          you, have you ever known what it is to be an orphan,
          and you say "orphan". As I understand you, you are
          merely repeating the word "orphan" to show that you
          understand me.
KING:    I didn't repeat the word often.
GENERAL: Pardon me, you did indeed.
KING:    I only repeated it once.
GENERAL: True, but you repeated it.
KING:    But not often.
GENERAL: Stop! I think I see where we are getting confused.
          When you said "orphan", did you mean "orphan",a person
          who has lost his parents, or "often", frequently?
KING:    Ah! I beg pardon- I see what you mean -- frequently.
GENERAL: Ah! you said "often", frequently.
KING:    No, only once.


Cheers
Nigel


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Marje
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 10:25 AM

Aha, I see, it's an English joke! It doesn't work if you read it in a Scottish or Irish accent - it took me a minute, and then I had to re-read it, because I pronounce the R in "orphan".

But I'm very fond of G&S and of course it would work fine if we could hear it aloud (provided that I'm not one of the speakers).

Wolfgang, the only explanation I can find for the "t" in "thyme" is that it seems to have come into English from Old French (and before that, from Greek), and the French had probably dropped the "h" already by the time we adopted the word.

Marje


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: An Buachaill Caol Dubh
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 10:34 AM

John McCormack frequently pronounced "th" with a "t" or even a "d" sound; listen, say, to his recording of "The Kerry Dance" (?1936), where even "youth" comes out as "yout'". Then there's that other Irish feature, where the "t" in a word like "at" is half-swallowed, certainly much softer than in English "Received Pronunciation" (pace markhf, above, it seems to me that the tongue in such cases is placed against the hard palate). And how often have we seen "letter" spelt "letther" in order to approximate to another characteristic Irish pronunciation?

On a rather different tack, the Scottish writer Alaister Gray in some of his works spells the words of upper-class characters in an unorthodox manner, with precisely the same purpose of conveying the peculiarities of their pronunciations (as English writers have been treating the speech of "the lower orders" for centuries). Finally, with reference to the posting by Joybell, above, the eighteenth-century Scottish novelist Tobias Smollett commented on how some people "of condition" (i.e. what we'd call the upper classes) had deliberately introduced peculiarities of pronunciation among themselves; I think Lord Chesterfield also comments on this in his Letters to his son.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Seamus Kennedy
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 11:30 AM

My friend Thomas hates his name for that reason.

Seamus


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 12:32 PM

Spanish 'ce' is pronounced somewhat close to 'thay' (but it is soft) in Castilian Spanish, but often 'ceh' in southern Spain, where 'thay' to some has the feeling of effeminacy and brings smiles when heard from a foreigner. 'Thay' is given as the pronunciation in Velásquez and that is the way it is taught in European foreign language courses, but the English 'thay' is too bald.
In reality, in much of Spain the c in ce and ci sounds a lot like a soft 'z.'
Even the hard 'c' is not as forced as it is in English.

A good pronunciation site is: Spanish
Look at Topic 19 for 'c.'

Catalan and other areas seem to be mixed. Many Catalans are proud of their own language.

In Mexico and Spanish America, 'thay' is not heard. Both 'ce' and 'ci' are pronounced like 's,' but the 'almost z' sound is occasional.

(I took Spanish lessons from a Colombian who worked in the same company as me- they have a number of local usages that weren't in the textbook and sometimes he became confused. Never did learn more than rudimentary 'tourist' Spanish, and I have lost most of that).


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 01:35 PM

Changing the way words are pronounced to match how they are spelt seems pretty daft to me. Doing it the other way, as Wolfgang explained the change in German, at least gives priority to the spoken language over the written.

Fortunately nursery rhymes and songs do something to protect us against these kind of changes of the way we say words:

There was a little girl and she had a little curl right in the middle of her forehead,
When she was good she was very very good, but when she was bad she was horrid.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: GUEST,Paul Burke Cookieless
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 01:49 PM

I was once invited by an Irish musician to hear his band performing at a local teather on Tursday. Thyme/ time has been a pun since at least the Middle English period, so I suspect it had always been a hard T, the spelling etymologised by pedants in the 18th century, as happened with 'debt' and several other words. The Greek indeed has a theta, irrelevantly, and anyway the consensus is that in the Classical period, that would have been pronounced as t'h rather than th.

I like the way foreign spelling trips us up- the number of people who talk about Italian dishes containing funjee, when the Eyteyes themselves went to the trouble to put the H in funghi, to insulate the G from the I.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 03:28 PM

More digression from "Celtic Perversity.
Listening to myself, I pronounce fungi as fun-je, as one does in fungible or fungicide, but not with the harder 'g' demanded by classical or scientific Latin and used in England.
Webster's Collegiate gives both, so Americans are relieved of the restriction.
The word is not really Latin, but was given to late Latin by the scientifically inclined; the true Latin seems to have been agricon.

Another argument- Church vs. classical Latin, agnus and similar words.
a nyus or ag nus?. In plant science courses, I was taught to use the latter, but Catholic and C of E priests use the former.

Oh, well, "What, me worry?"


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Marje
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 03:30 PM

Changing your pronunciation to match the spelling might sound perverse, but when there's a word or a name that you don't know how to pronounce, and all you have to go on is the spelling, that's one time when the changes occur. It happens quite a bit in place-names: Bosham in Sussex should be Bozz-um but people see the "sh" and say Bosham. Dittisham in Devon has the same problem - locals say Dittsum, but visitors say Ditty-sham, which may well prevail in the end, since most of the houses there are second homes and "locals" are a dwindling breed.

And there's often a striving for correctness - if you see a word written "forehead", there's a tendency to think "forrid" must be lazy or wrong (like saying Febury or libary), and to "correct" the pronunciation to match the spelling.

Marje


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 03:39 PM

Forrrd march!


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: GUEST,Learaí na Láibe
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 03:53 PM

Thyme pronounced without the 'th' is not peculiar to Hiberno-English. I was taught, rightly or wrongly, that "thyme" and "Thames" were exceptions and that the 'th' should not be vocalised.

Most educated people in Ireland do pronounce 'th' in ordinary speech. Our ex-Taoiseach (prime minister) Bertie Ahern was an exception and people made fun of his 'dises ' and 'dats'.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 06:17 PM

"Waistcoat" is another one. Nothing to do with waists, it's really "vest coat" which became "weskit".

I've never heard anyone say "folk" pronouncing it as "follk", but no doubt it'll come in time. (actually that probably is the older way of saying it, which is why it's spelt that way.)


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: GUEST,Smokey
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 06:30 PM

Christy Moore, on the album 'Whatever Tickles your Fancy' sings a mixture of both time and thyme (toim and thoime), and much as I admire him, makes a right dog's dinner of the song. (Bunch of Thyme) The magic of the song is in the ambiguity, and he seems to have completely missed the point.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Seamus Kennedy
Date: 17 Jun 09 - 06:41 PM

A friend of mine from Co. Cork jokingly says he drops the 'h' from 't'irst' and 't'ird' because he was taught (thaught?) by his mother that it was rude to stick your tongue out while speaking.

Seamus


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: GUEST
Date: 18 Jun 09 - 04:34 PM

This reminds me of the tale of the Irishman who became the caller at a bingo hall. He called out 'Sherwood Forest'. What's that everyone cried. The reply? 'All the trees - tirty tree'!

HelenJ.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: GUEST,Paddy
Date: 18 Jun 09 - 05:12 PM

And the three Irishmen who applied for jobs at the Foresty Commission who were looking for tree fellers.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: MartinRyan
Date: 18 Jun 09 - 05:23 PM

Ah but.... they were Irish-Americans, surely? ;>)

Regards


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: curmudgeon
Date: 18 Jun 09 - 05:48 PM

Posters to this thread would do well to also look at the Joke thread from time to time:

Subject: RE: BS: 2nd joke thread of 2009
From: Sooz - PM
Date: 20 May 09 - 02:57 PM

Paddy wants a job, but the foreman won't hire him until he passes a little math's test.

Here is your first question, the foreman said. "Without using numbers, represent the number 9."

"Without numbers?" Paddy says? "Dat's easy." And proceeds to draw three trees.

"What's this?" the boss asks.

"Have you no brain? Tree and tree plus tree makes 9" says Paddy.

"Fair enough," says the boss. "Here's your second question. Use the same rules, but this time the number is 99."

Paddy stares into space for a while, then picks up the picture that he has just drawn and makes a smudge on each tree.... "Ere ye go."

The boss scratches his head and says, "How on earth do you get that to represent 99?"

"Each of them trees is dirty now. So, it's dirty tree, and dirty tree, plus dirty tree. Dat makes 99."

The boss is getting worried that he's going to actually have to hire Paddy, so he says, "All right, last question. Same rules again, but represent the number 100."

Paddy stares into space some more, then he picks up the picture again and makes a little mark at the base of each tree and says, "Dere ye go. One hundred."

The boss looks at the attempt. "You must be nuts if you think that represents a hundred!"

Paddy leans forward and points to the marks at the base of each tree and whispers, "A little dog came along and took a shoite at de bottom each tree.

So now you got dirty tree and a turd, dirty tree and a turd, and dirty tree and a turd, which makes... ONE HUNDRED!"

Paddy is the new supervisor.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Stringsinger
Date: 18 Jun 09 - 06:14 PM

We visited the town of Snyme (I think that's how you spell it) it Ireland.
On one side of town they pronounced it "Sneem". On the other side, "Snime".

You say patayto and I say patahto.....................

Language is fluid whether it's Celtic or English perversity.

In New York, thirty-third is orphan pronounced "turty-turd" as in "turty-turd and turd Ave."

Even contemporary English in England doesn't sound like it used to. R's are pronounced where at one time they were left off.

Celtic perversity or Anglo-Saxon perversity, it's just "woids".

Frank


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: Declan
Date: 19 Jun 09 - 03:02 AM

I don't think its perversity. Some people have been given a hard time in school over pronouncing 'th' as 'd' and become so self conscious about it that they over compensate to the etent that they get things wrong at times. Most would be unaware that they are doing it.

It's difficult to generalise about Irish accents as there are strong regional variations. In general in Dublin there is a tendency to drop the final t in a word so that 'that' becomes 'tha' or 'da'. On the other hand you often meet Dublin people who very makedly pronounce the 't' which I think again comes from tryong to sound educated.


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Subject: RE: Celtic Perversity or English.
From: MartinRyan
Date: 19 Jun 09 - 03:58 AM

Stringsinger

In the town of Sneem..... you were hearing two different languages, methinks! Sneem is the Anglicisation of An tSnaidhm, its Gaelic ancestor.
The latter has that diphthongy "ay" sound you heard, more or less.

Regards


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