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Pronunciation of "flour" and "flower" Options
Koh Elaine
Posted: Sunday, September 30, 2018 1:52:35 AM
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Do native speakers pronounce "flour" and "flower" differently?

Thanks.
Sarrriesfan
Posted: Sunday, September 30, 2018 1:59:38 AM

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No they are the same.

I lack the imagination for a witty signature.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Sunday, September 30, 2018 3:22:23 AM

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But I (and half of the people in Britain, or more) pronounce them differently.
It depends on accent and dialect.

Flour - /flaʊr'/ - one syllable

Flower - /flaʊ'wər/ - two syllables

Listen to this northern accent - the first couple of seconds "That's lovely my old flowers." He's from Yorkshire, but it's very similar to the way I would say it.

(Also the /lʌvlɪ/ rather than the southern accent which sounds (to a norhern-English speaker) almost like /levle/.


Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
ozok
Posted: Sunday, September 30, 2018 3:26:01 AM
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I would expect that the answer hasn't changed much since the last time the OP placed this question.



just sayin'
Helenej
Posted: Sunday, September 30, 2018 4:35:12 AM

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Drag0nspeaker wrote:

Fantastic! If I didn’t believe you, I would bet he is speaking Swahili.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Sunday, September 30, 2018 4:55:24 AM

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Dancing Applause
No - that's English!



Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
Koh Elaine
Posted: Sunday, September 30, 2018 7:31:33 AM
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It's strange. According to the dictionaries I consulted, they have the same pronunciation.
FounDit
Posted: Sunday, September 30, 2018 9:59:15 AM

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Drag0nspeaker wrote:
Dancing Applause
No - that's English!



I think I understood about 3 words in the first 5 minutes: "flowers" and "you know".

But to answer the question, I pronounce them both the same in my American English. Of course, that may not mean much as my English is half hillbilly, and half Texan.


We should look to the past to learn from it, not destroy our future because of it — FounDit
Helenej
Posted: Sunday, September 30, 2018 10:29:37 AM

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FounDit wrote:
I think I understood about 3 words in the first 5 minutes: "flowers" and "you know".

Phew! What a relief to hear this. I thought I was supposed to understand at least a third of what the guy says and felt myself a complete idiot.Brick wall
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Sunday, September 30, 2018 11:14:22 AM

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No!
I think that part of his humour was the contrast between his (very broad) Yorkshire working-class accent and his looks and demeanour which were typically West Indian.

Many people in Britain would have trouble understanding everything when he was speaking so fast.

Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
papo_308
Posted: Sunday, September 30, 2018 2:46:38 PM
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Helenej wrote:
FounDit wrote:
I think I understood about 3 words in the first 5 minutes: "flowers" and "you know".

Phew! What a relief to hear this. I thought I was supposed to understand at least a third of what the guy says and felt myself a complete idiot.Brick wall


You're not alone in this, HelenejBoo hoo!
Helenej
Posted: Sunday, September 30, 2018 3:41:11 PM

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papo_308 wrote:
You're not alone in this, HelenejBoo hoo!

Sounds encouraging. Thanks, Papo.

I've been wondering whether those in Britain who speak such dialects are looked down upon by those who speak 'standard TV accent' or any dialect is equally respected?

How do you feel about it, Drag0?
Wilmar (USA)
Posted: Sunday, September 30, 2018 5:37:59 PM

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Dictionaries will pronounce words for you -- you might give that a try.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Monday, October 1, 2018 4:42:21 AM

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Helenej wrote:
I've been wondering whether those in Britain who speak such dialects are looked down upon by those who speak 'standard TV accent' or any dialect is equally respected?
How do you feel about it, Drag0?

It's complicated and has changed over the last fifty years. There are a few 'gradations'
- "RP" - which is not spoken naturally by anyone (its name is "Received Pronunciation" - it is something which is educated into the person, not really something they grow up with). This is the pronunciation given in the Oxford Dictionary, and copied in other dictionaries.
- "South Eastern" which is 'sort of' similar. However, this is a natural accent (or group of accents) from the south-east of England academic population (not rural areas) and is spoken by maybe 20% of Britons, probably less.
- "Southern" (which includes South-Eastern) and is spoken by about 35% of the population.
- "Northern" (which includes several sub-sets, and sometimes is taken to include Scottish), spoken by about 40%.
- Several other 'outlying areas' - Wales, West-country, Ireland, Isle-of-Man, Anglian

****************
When I was young (in the 1950s and 60s) the language which is now called "RP" or "Oxbridge" was generally called "BBC English" - to have a job as an announcer, News-person, or anything on the TV or radio, you HAD to speak perfect RP.
It was considered that this was "correct" English and anything else was "WRONG".

This attitude has continued to this day among certain groups - particularly some of the less-enlightened, more 'snobbish' "upper middle-class" (who are working hard to appear 'upper-class') or "lower upper-class" (who are desperately trying to not appear 'middle-class').
One can still hear comments like "it should be pronounced this way - this is the only correct way" - when only 15% of the British population pronounce it like that.

**************
The modern situation is where it becomes a bit complex.
There is still the belief in the south that "this is how people speak" - like sarrriesfan's answer at the beginning of this thread - there was no "some people pronounce them the same and others pronounce them differently, it was a bald "They are pronounced the same."
This is understandable, and not a fault. People in the south hear only the way people around them speak, so assume that it's universal.

Some people in the south DO look down on people from the north and from the West Country, because of the way they speak.
However, there is a thing in Britain (maybe other places) known as 'reverse snobbery'. It is admirable to be from a poor working-class background and it is definitely looked down on if you speak "posh". (Romany can probably tell you more about this as she moved into the "South Eastern" area).
Now, it would be an anomaly to hear someone on the radio or TV speaking RP.



Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
Sarrriesfan
Posted: Monday, October 1, 2018 4:46:18 AM

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Yes I deserve a tap on the knuckles for my original statement, I have enough family in Newcastle and Scotland to know that accents around the country are different.

I lack the imagination for a witty signature.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Monday, October 1, 2018 4:50:18 AM

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Wae-aye mon!

Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
Helenej
Posted: Monday, October 1, 2018 6:16:50 AM

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I didn’t even expect to receive such a comprehensive review of the matter. Thank you, Drag0.

Drag0nspeaker wrote:
There is still the belief in the south that "this is how people speak".

Sounds hilarious.

Drag0nspeaker wrote:
Now, it would be an anomaly to hear someone on the radio or TV speaking RP.

You mean that the announcers and presenters on TV have their own original accents, which are easily understandable by most people in Britain, right? I guess people like the man in your video don’t have a chance to appear on the national TV in these roles, do they?

Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Monday, October 1, 2018 7:09:20 AM

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Hi again.

Yes - the announcers newsreaders etc each have their own accents.
When they are on national TV/radio, they speak with their own accent but not usually using dialect words and phrases which will not be understood.

If they are on regional programs, they would speak as they normally do - accent and dialect included. (There are many radio stations which are only broadcast over a small area - one county or city.)
There are a few TV stations which transmit to the whole UK part of the day and to single countries/regions for part of the day.
For example BBC Scotland transmits the same programs as the BBC, a lot of the day. The News and some 'topical' programs are purely Scottish - but are broadcast in English by Scots in their own accents.

Then there are the true national TV channels - BBC Alba (Scotland) and Teledu Cymru (Wales) which do not transmit in English at all, but in languages called 'y Gymraeg' and 'Gaelic'.

Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
Sarrriesfan
Posted: Monday, October 1, 2018 8:49:21 AM

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Drag0nspeaker wrote:
Wae-aye mon!


Although my aunt would probably say "I don't live in Newcastle, I live in Seaton Delaval", it's actually a little village just a smidge north of Newcastle.

Further to what Drago has said about TV the BBC also has a host of regional Radio Stations that cover particular parts of the UK as well such as Radio Cambridgeshire, Radio Surrey, Radio Merseyside or in the case of my region Radio Three Counties (Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and Buckinghamshire). All these with have a mix of local people on them with thier own accents and dialects.

I lack the imagination for a witty signature.
Helenej
Posted: Monday, October 1, 2018 2:06:21 PM

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Thank you for you explanation, Drag0 and Sarriesfan.
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