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BBC – Culture – How Americans preserved British English

Americans today pronounce some words more like Shakespeare than Brits do… but it’s in 18th-Century England where they’d really feel at home.

Source: BBC – Culture – How Americans preserved British English

This is one of those fun articles about English linguistics. I always find it interesting to read about the evolution of English in the former colonies. My father would say that he spoke the “King’s English”, and OMG, if you heard his accent, well, I don’t think they necessarily talked like him like they do in South Philadelphia these days (and his accent has softened after living in Central New Jersey for the last 50+ years as compared to my cousins in Southern New Jersey closer to Philadelphia).  We also have to remember that even within the United States, there are many variances. Heck, within New Jersey, one of the original 13 colonies, there’s lots of variance.  But reading about “OP” for Shakespeare and other pronunciation features make you wonder how the written word and the rhetorical words have divulged. I mean, we can still read things (sometimes with a little difficulty) from authors from centuries ago, but how would it have sounded in comparison to reading the words?

Ah, language evolution never stops.

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Danielle M. Villegas is a technical communicator who currently employed at Cox Automotive, Inc., and freelances as her own technical communications consultancy, Dair Communications. She has worked at the International Refugee Committee, MetLife, Novo Nordisk, BASF North America, Merck, and Deloitte, with a background in content strategy, web content management, social media, project management, e-learning, and client services. Danielle is best known in the technical communications world for her blog,, which has continued to flourish since it was launched during her graduate studies at NJIT in 2012. She has presented webinars and seminars for Adobe, the Society for Technical Communication (STC), the IEEE ProComm, TCUK (ISTC) and at Drexel University’s eLearning Conference. She has written articles for the STC Intercom, STC Notebook, the Content Rules blog, and The Content Wrangler as well. She is very active in the STC, as a former chapter president for the STC-Philadelphia Metro Chapter, and is currently serving on three STC Board committees. You can learn more about Danielle on LinkedIn at, on Twitter @techcommgeekmom, or through her blog. All content is the owner's opinions, and does not reflect those of her employers past or present.

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