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  1. salvador.dal1950's Avatar
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    #1

    The way the British pronounce the word "year"

    Hello, is it too posh/prim pronouncing the word "year" as /jɜː/.

    I've found in a dictionary that only 20% of the population pronounce it in that way; the vast majority of people use /jɪə/.

    I ask because I just noticed that I use /jɜː/, and I don't want to sound as if I were a character from Downton Abbey (the posh ones!).

    Thank you .
    Last edited by salvador.dal1950; 01-Feb-2015 at 18:53. Reason: the people for people

  2. Roman55's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: The way the British pronounce the word "year"

    I am not a teacher.

    I'd be interested to know which dictionary told you that. Could you provide a link to it?

    If it's a question of RP (Received Pronunciation) then it can't be too posh. It just is. I speak RP because I grew up and was educated in a part of England that uses RP as a standard, but I pronounce year as /jɪə(r)/

    I can see a stab at humour in your post, and I do understand what you mean, but the real question you should ask yourself is 'What sort of English do I (want to) speak?'

    You can't pronounce some words one way because you don't want to sound like this, and other words another way because you don't want to sound like that. You have to be consistent.

  3. salvador.dal1950's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: The way the British pronounce the word "year"

    Quote Originally Posted by Roman55 View Post
    I am not a teacher.

    I'd be interested to know which dictionary told you that. Could you provide a link to it?

    If it's a question of RP (Received Pronunciation) then it can't be too posh. It just is. I speak RP because I grew up and was educated in a part of England that uses RP as a standard, but I pronounce year as /jɪə(r)/

    I can see a stab at humour in your post, and I do understand what you mean, but the real question you should ask yourself is 'What sort of English do I (want to) speak?'

    You can't pronounce some words one way because you don't want to sound like this, and other words another way because you don't want to sound like that. You have to be consistent.
    It's from a trustworthy dictionary: "Longman Pronunciation Dictionary". I can't provide a link since it's a software, but I've attached a snapshot.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I've heard it so many times on radio 4 (BBC), that I've picked it up. I know that radio 4 it's known for having well spoken presenters, but I think it might come across as old fashioned or posh or something.

    I know what you mean by having consistency and sticking to a particular type of English; what I wish to do is to speak in standard English without embarrassing myself sounding like a comic character.

    Thank you for your reply.

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    #4

    Re: The way the British pronounce the word "year"

    In practice, you'd probably find native English speakers pronounce it the second way if they're saying the word in isolation, but the first way if they're saying it as part of a sentence.

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