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peter123

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Hi there
How do you pronounce the word ‘Hull’ as in University of Hull? British say ‘ul’ as the ‘ul’ in ‘culture’ while American say ‘u’ as ‘a’ in ‘about’?

Thanks
pete
 
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Peter, this is question of phonetics which is must be a constant source of confusion for ESL students. The word is Hull with - as you rightly said - the 'ul' of culture. With an American accent this would turn to 'al', but it doesn't mean that the latter way is correct; just said with an accent! There are countless other examples but don't sweat too much about it. Suffice to say, the English pronunciation is original.
 

BobK

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Someone who came from Hull would probably use a different vowel (at least, among friends) - more like the one in pull. The Received Pronunciation vowel sound is /ʌ/. That doesn't mean that other accents are wrong - just that they may be misunderstood in contexts where RP is expected.

As in this exchange between a London (Home Counties) solicitor and his (Northern) clerk:

(Excuse puerile joke; my point is serious)

RP: 'I've left the file at home and I need it in court this afternoon.'

clerk: /fʌks ɪt ɷp/ ['Fax it up.']

RP: 'Yes, it does, rather.'

;-)

b
 

seba_870701

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Someone who came from Hull would probably use a different vowel (at least, among friends) - more like the one in pull. The Received Pronunciation vowel sound is /ʌ/. That doesn't mean that other accents are wrong - just that they may be misunderstood in contexts where RP is expected.

As in this exchange between a London (Home Counties) solicitor and his (Northern) clerk:

(Excuse puerile joke; my point is serious)

RP: 'I've left the file at home and I need it in court this afternoon.'

clerk: /fʌks ɪt ɷp/ ['Fax it up.']

RP: 'Yes, it does, rather.'

;-)

b

Hi Bob,
sorry to ask such a silly question but what do you mean by /ɷp/ in clerk's line in your joke. I don't know that phonetic symbol which is crucial for understanding the joke, I believe.. :cry: Since I understand the rest, give me a hint only about that one, please ;-)
Thanks in advance,
Seba
 

BobK

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Hi Bob,
sorry to ask such a silly question but what do you mean by /ɷp/ in clerk's line in your joke. I don't know that phonetic symbol which is crucial for understanding the joke, I believe.. :cry: Since I understand the rest, give me a hint only about that one, please ;-)
Thanks in advance,
Seba

[ɷ] represents the vowel sound in 'pull'. Whereas in RP "up" would be transcribed phonemically as /ʌp/, the clerk says [ɷp]. And, incidentally, he probably says "fax" with a vowel sound more like the pure [ɑ] - it's only us slaves to RP who hear it as /ʌ/.

b
 
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