[DWJ] pronunciations

Jameela Lares Jameela.Lares at usm.edu
Tue Jun 8 10:24:55 EDT 2010

Actually, the Oxford Englilsh Dictionary (2nd ed, 1989), reports the verb "donate" as chiefly used in America, and even judges the usage vulgar, so I imagine the American pronunciation should be the guide.

I'm not always sure of pronunciation differences between the US and the UK, but since English is Germanic and thus characterized by an initial syllable stress, the default stress would be on the first syllable.  Or in Britain is that only on core vocabulary from Anglo-Saxon?  I do know that the US preserves the initial syllable stress in words like COR-ollary, which in the UK is co-ROL-lary.  I suspect the pronunciation shifted back in the UK rather than in the US, but I am generalizing from what I know about perceived American mispronunciations that are actually preservations of older forms.

My favorite "mispronunciation" is "aks" for "ask," which is actually the original form.  One sees spellings of "aks" as late as the 17th century.

Jameela Lares
Professor of English
The University of Southern Mississippi
118 College Drive, #5037
Hattiesburg, MS  39406-0001
601 266-4319 ofc
601 266-5757 fax
From: dwj-bounces at suberic.net [dwj-bounces at suberic.net] On Behalf Of devra at aol.com [devra at aol.com]
Sent: Tuesday, June 08, 2010 9:02 AM
To: dwj at suberic.net
Subject: Re: [DWJ] pronunciations

It actually sounds as though a lot of our problems come from the placement of the accent.  In English, as I remember from school, it is usually on the ante-penultimate syllable, that is, the one before the next to last one. If only two syllables, then on the last one.

It really rattles my brain to hear a horrid radio commercial where, in order to fit the (so-called) music, they say DO-nate.  ARRRGH.

So hy-PER-bol-ee.

And are you aware that you can gruntle things? (Like cats....)  Then there was the fan author who wrote "Spock was vincible..." Yeah, sure.

Devra (putting off work)

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