Interested in Language
Listening to the speech of Newfoundland, Ireland, and Newcastle upon Tyne I can hear certain similarities. For example the word 'time' and words with the same vowel as 'time' tend to be pronounced with a long vowel, almost like "tie'eem" in all three different accents.
The Newfoundland accent sadly probably is starting to sound more like your generic Ontario or British Columbia sort of speech but a really broad Newfoundland accent sounds pretty much identical to certain accents in the British Isles and I notice commonalities with Ireland, West Country, Welsh and Geordie accents.
I find the grammar and lexicon of Newfinese, Irish and Geordie very similar as well. For example the Geordie "why aye man" is very similar, and means the same thing as the famous Newfinese "yes by" - more or less a statement of agreement though often used in a dismissive and sarcastic way. Originally "yes by" actually was "aye by" or "aye boy".
All three accents pronounce "my" as "me" and follow the northern subject rule. It's common to say things like "You knows yourself" in Newfoundland, a form which is pretty typical of the north of England and was actually typical of the south of England too as recent as Victorian times.
I'm not sure about Ireland but I know in Newfoundland and North East England it's common to refer to people by terms of endearment. Like I know Geordie women will refer to children and even other adults as 'hinny' and 'pet' and Newfinese men will call female friends 'ducky' even if their relationship is totally platonic. I'm not sure how much modern political correctness is changing that.
My theory is that the similarities have to do with the fact Irish people make up around 40 percent of Newfoundland's ethnic makeup and quite a few of them migrated to Newcastle Upon Tyne in the 19th century for work, so they probably had a significant influence on Geordie speech and perhaps this possible Irish influence are part of what make Tyneside speech different from Mackem or Northumberland dialect.
Many Americans would mistake Cheryl Cole for being Irish and some people in Newfoundland kind of talk like she does on certain words. A Newfoundlander might say something like "you knows yerself how bad waysps get this tame of year" which is pretty much how Cheryl would probably say it.
The majority of the non-Irish 60 percent of Newfoundland's makeup came from South West England, which is the opposite side of England to Geordieland. But at the same time, the South West shares with the North a strong Celtic influence on the colour of the local speech, and Geordieland and the West Country both retained archaic features of the English language later into history than South East England and the Midlands did.
And come to think of it, Geordies call Newcastle 'The Toon' and Newfoundlanders call St. John's 'Town', lol.
But yeah basically I think the reason I'm making this connection is because
1) Newfoundland and Newcastle are both primarily English but with a large share of Irish heritage
2) Hiberno-English, Geordie and Newfinese all have heavily Celtic-influenced grammatical structure
3) The cultures of these regions are all very 'down to earth' as opposed to posh
4) All three accents have retained many old features that have died in standard Estuary, American and Canadian speech
5) The broadest examples of these accents are practically languages unto themselves and Newfinese and Geordie occupy roughly the same place of imagination in Canadian and British society, respectively
Last edited by donniedarko; 30-Dec-2012 at 07:45.
Newfinese and Geordie are my favourite dialects of English by the way. They just sound so friendly and warm in my opinion and they have so much character. =]