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Convict13

Peter Capaldi as Sherlock Holmes

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That was great video Carol but even though I’ve heard his accent I don’t think that I’d recognise it again. I’d have to hear him speak regularly to become familiar with it. It would be obviously recognisable to you. I think ....Boston accent =JFK, New York = Peter Falk etc.

 

The cops/doughnuts cliche is an understandable one. Hey, if they’re good enough for Homer Simpson....

 

Guilty as charged about The Tea Party (well, not me personally). I could try and get out of it by saying that George III was more German than English but it wouldn’t convince anyone

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Actually, I don't that often notice that someone has an accent like mine, because such a person merely sounds "normal" to me. I am capable of noticing relatively small differences, though, including a local accent that's even stronger than mine.

 

I suppose that everyone considers their own accent as "normal," or to put it another way, we all think that it's only people from other places that have accents. ;)

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I’m sure that’s true Carol. It can also be the case, I think, that accents can be lessened or deepened according to who we are speaking to. It’s probably a subconscious thing. Speaking to parents can mean ‘full accent’ as opposed to speaking to a stranger. When I hear someone on tv speaking with ‘my’ accent I always feel that it sounds ugly and clumsy. Maybe this is a common feeling and its why we might tend to ‘tone down?’ Or do we think that others might not understand what we’re saying? Or do we think that an accent = yokel.

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I've always enjoyed hearing "my" accent (especially when I'm far from home), so in my case, I think it's more of a subconscious effort to fit in. You're absolutely right about who you're talking to being a huge factor -- my roommates in Boston could always tell when I was talking to my family on the phone, and a group of Canadians that I'd been chatting with for half an hour between Air Canada flights once asked me "what part of the country" I was from.

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When I go to Maine in the summer, people up there think I have a southern accent. But people here in Virginia know I don't, although most can't quite figure out where I'm from, which is California. (But I don't have a Californian accent either, since we left there when I was quite young.)

 

On the other hand, I think people in Maine have a New England accent, but most of the people who live around here (and most of them are not native Virginians) don't seem to have much of an accent at all to me, unless they're from another country altogether. My mother has a light southern accent, but she sounds accentless to me. My New York brother-in-law, however, loves mimicking what he hears as her southern drawl. But when he does it, to me it sounds exaggerated, not how like my mother actually talks at all. On the other hand, he has what I would identify as a classic Brooklyn Jew accent, even though he's spent most of his life in California. But another Jewish friend, who is also from Brooklyn but lives in the south, doesn't sound like him at all.

 

Etc, etc, etc. I think accents are far more fluid than we usually like to think. Yet we know when we're hearing one that isn't ours. Interesting, isn't it?

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My Gran was born in Scotland but lived in the Midlands for 60+ years but never lost her Scottish accent. My brother went to live in Wales when he was young for a few months and came back with a definite Welsh accent (which he’s now lost.) Accents appear to be infectious but it’s not very often that someone can ‘do’ an accent and fool a local. There are always tell tale clues it appears.

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When I go to Maine in the summer, people up there think I have a southern accent. But people here in Virginia know I don't, although most can't quite figure out where I'm from, which is California. (But I don't have a Californian accent either, since we left there when I was quite young.)

 

On the other hand, I think people in Maine have a New England accent, but most of the people who live around here (and most of them are not native Virginians) don't seem to have much of an accent at all to me, unless they're from another country altogether. My mother has a light southern accent, but she sounds accentless to me. My New York brother-in-law, however, loves mimicking what he hears as her southern drawl. But when he does it, to me it sounds exaggerated, not how like my mother actually talks at all.  [....]

 

Etc, etc, etc. I think accents are far more fluid than we usually like to think. Yet we know when we're hearing one that isn't ours. Interesting, isn't it?

 

So what accent *do* you have?

 

The people I've known from Maryland & Virginia tend to pronounce their o's funny -- almost like an "ow" crossed with a standard American "oh."  Or something like that.

 

When your brother-in-law mimics your mother, he's presumably accentuating what he hears as the most distinctive features of her speech, so of course he'd exaggerate her accent.  When folks from the US mimic Canadians, they tend to say things like "oot and aboot," whereas the Canadian "ow" sound sounds to me roughly halfway between "ow" and "oo.'

 

Accents appear to be infectious but it’s not very often that someone can ‘do’ an accent and fool a local. There are always tell tale clues it appears.

 

Right -- like Arcadia's brother-in-law, they're doing the local accent as they hear it, not as the locals hear it.  And/or they're (intentionally or otherwise) exaggerating it.  I'm not sure I could do a believable Hoosier accent if I was thinking about it.

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When I go to Maine in the summer, people up there think I have a southern accent. But people here in Virginia know I don't, although most can't quite figure out where I'm from, which is California. (But I don't have a Californian accent either, since we left there when I was quite young.)

 

On the other hand, I think people in Maine have a New England accent, but most of the people who live around here (and most of them are not native Virginians) don't seem to have much of an accent at all to me, unless they're from another country altogether. My mother has a light southern accent, but she sounds accentless to me. My New York brother-in-law, however, loves mimicking what he hears as her southern drawl. But when he does it, to me it sounds exaggerated, not how like my mother actually talks at all.  [....]

 

Etc, etc, etc. I think accents are far more fluid than we usually like to think. Yet we know when we're hearing one that isn't ours. Interesting, isn't it?

 

So what accent *do* you have?

 

Derned if I know. My mom's from the south, my dad's from the north, I grew up in the west, I've lived in the southeast for the past 40 years, I spend my summers in New England, and I've mostly lived in places where I'm surrounded by people from all over the world. I've had a couple people ask me if I was originally from the Mediterranean! (???) I generally tell people I have an American accent, which gets me a lot of puzzled looks. :smile:

 

The people I've known from Maryland & Virginia tend to pronounce their o's funny -- almost like an "ow" crossed with a standard American "oh."  Or something like that.

That's what I think of as the "old Virginia" accent ... you don't hear it around here (near Wash. DC) too much, but you'll still hear it if you go down around Richmond. The Maryland version sounds a little different to me, though, although I couldn't say in what way. I just know one from the other when I hear it.

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I just checked out of curiosity - Alaska/Texas/California/Montana/New Mexico/Arizona/Nevada/Colerado/Oregon/Wyoming/Michigan are all individually larger than the UK!

 

Carol’s Indiana is 0.39% of the UK and Hikari’s Ohio is 0.47% of the UK. I think you’re in Virginia Arcadia? That’s 0.45% of the UK.

 

As far as accents go, to the average person, we can usually recognise them by general area (although I get the impression, for some reason, younger people don’t recognise accents so well these days) If I list them I’d say - Scotland, generic North East (includes Newcastle, Sunderland etc), generic Yorkshire, generic Lancashire, Liverpool, Manchester, generic Midlands, generic Welsh, generic West Country and South West (including Bristol, Devon etc), Cornwall, generic London and possibly (though less distinguishable[for me at least] an eastern accent Norwich/Ipswich etc.

 

For example, to me, a Welsh accent is a Welsh accent, Pseudonym would tell you the real story though.

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I just checked out of curiosity - Alaska/Texas/California/Montana/New Mexico/Arizona/Nevada/Colerado/Oregon/Wyoming/Michigan are all individually larger than the UK!

 

Carol’s Indiana is 0.39% of the UK and Hikari’s Ohio is 0.47% of the UK. I think you’re in Virginia Arcadia? That’s 0.45% of the UK.

 

As far as accents go, to the average person, we can usually recognise them by general area (although I get the impression, for some reason, younger people don’t recognise accents so well these days) If I list them I’d say - Scotland, generic North East (includes Newcastle, Sunderland etc), generic Yorkshire, generic Lancashire, Liverpool, Manchester, generic Midlands, generic Welsh, generic West Country and South West (including Bristol, Devon etc), Cornwall, generic London and possibly (though less distinguishable[for me at least] an eastern accent Norwich/Ipswich etc.

 

For example, to me, a Welsh accent is a Welsh accent, Pseudonym would tell you the real story though.

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On 1/3/2015 at 3:58 AM, Convict13 said:

Tom Baker once played Sherlock Holmes

 

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