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  1. #1
    GeneD is offline Senior Member
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    Rhyming "wood" with "flood"

    Farewell to the mountains, high-cover'd with snow,
    Farewell to the straths and green vallies below;
    Farewell to the forests and wild-hanging woods,
    Farewell to the torrents and loud-pouring floods.
    (from "My heart's in the Highlands" by R. Burns)

    The two words don't rhyme, do they? But they appear in poetry as rhyming. Every time I come across a line ending with "flood" or "blood" and the next one ending with the [u] sound, I feel a bit puzzled. Were such words pronounced differently at the time they were written? If so, do you read them as they should sound taking it from the point of view of the modern language?

  2. #2
    Rover_KE is offline Moderator
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    Re: Rhyming "wood" with "flood"

    They are not an exact rhyme in modern English, but Robert Burns (1759-96) was a Scottish poet who wrote in the Scots dialect and would recite his work with his native pronunciation.

    I'm sure you can find examples of this dialect on YouTube.

  3. #3
    bubbha is offline Senior Member
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    Re: Rhyming "wood" with "flood"

    In Scotland and much of northern England, "wood" and "flood" rhyme. They don't rhyme in RP or in American English.

    Also, you'll find that some rhymes don't work in any modern dialect of English, instead reflecting the pronunciations of older forms of English. An example is rhymes of "prove" and "love", which centuries ago would have both rhymed with "stove".
    NOT A TEACHER. Translator and editor, and I hold a TESOL certificate. Native speaker of American English (West Coast)

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