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  1. #1
    Odessa Dawn's Avatar
    Odessa Dawn is offline Senior Member
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    "... said the latter while ... said the former"

    Then there is "neither", which most British people still pronounce as in "scythe" while most Americans "seethe".

    On the scone (gone)/scone (bone) debate, all the American speakers said the latter while two-thirds of British English-speakers said the former.
    English as she is spoke? Voice map finds American stresses not so loud | Books | The Guardian
    I am completely lost with "On the scone (gone)/scone (bone) debate, Ö" because it made me confused. I donít know what the purpose of parentheses and slash in the second line is. However, I think the latter refers to seethe and the former refers to scythe, am I correct, please?

  2. #2
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    Re: "... said the latter while ... said the former"

    A scone is a nice little baked item. The British often have them with their tea in the afternoon. In America they are usually called biscuits (a term that has a quite different meaning in BrE) and are most often eaten at breakfast time with gravy.

    But your passage is about pronunciation. I believe that in AmE the usual pronunciation rhymes with on or gone, while in BrE it tends to rhyme with tone and bone. I stand ready to be corrected on this.

  3. #3
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    Re: "... said the latter while ... said the former"

    Scones are different from biscuits. I would never have gravy on a scone. A scone has eggs and usually a bit of sugar, and often things in it - blueberries or cheese or some other flavor. I make a wonderful apple-cinnamon scone. I make a good ham and cheese scone too.

    Biscuits are flour, butter, something to make it rise, and milk. They are fluffier than scones and are indeed lovely with gravy. In fact, I"m making biscuits and gravy for breakfast tomorrow. You still have time to get here.

    Scone rhymes with bone in the US.

    On the scone (gone)/scone (bone) debate, all the American speakers said the latter while two-thirds of British English-speakers said the former.

    This says that all of the American speakers used the second (the latter) pronunciation that rhymes with "bone" and that 2/3 of the British speakers used the first (the former) pronunciation that rhymes with "gone." Note that probus says that the British say "scone" to rhyme with "bone" as well, so I don't know where the "rhymes with gone" speakers are.

    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  4. #4
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    Re: "... said the latter while ... said the former"

    Whether "scone" rhymes with "gone" or "bone" is a question which causes arguments in the UK. Everyone has an opinion. Both pronunciations are accepted. There doesn't seem to be a particular regional aspect to it. Even within families, two people might pronounce the word differently. I say it so that it rhymes with "stone/bone/tone" etc. My flatmate rhymes it with "gone".
    Remember - correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing make posts much easier to read.

  5. #5
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    Re: "... said the latter while ... said the former"

    Quote Originally Posted by Odessa Dawn View Post
    I am completely lost with "On the scone (gone)/scone (bone) debate, …" because it made me confused. I don’t know what the purpose of parentheses and slash in the second line is. However, I think the latter refers to seethe and the former refers to scythe, am I correct, please?
    Count me in the scone/bone group.

  6. #6
    Raymott's Avatar
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    Re: "... said the latter while ... said the former"

    Everyone in Australia rhymes scone with gone. It's physically the same thing as in Britain - something you cut in half and put butter and jam on.

  7. #7
    Tdol is online now Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Re: "... said the latter while ... said the former"

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    Whether "scone" rhymes with "gone" or "bone" is a question which causes arguments in the UK. Everyone has an opinion. Both pronunciations are accepted. There doesn't seem to be a particular regional aspect to it. Even within families, two people might pronounce the word differently. I say it so that it rhymes with "stone/bone/tone" etc. My flatmate rhymes it with "gone".
    I drift from one to the other.

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