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#205970 - 06/04/12 10:47 PM Plummy
Jackie Offline

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From an article: ...speaking in their own local accents instead of the plummy English known among academics as Received Pronunciation.
Why "Received Pronunciation", and, especially, why "plummy"?

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#205976 - 06/05/12 12:02 AM Re: Plummy [Re: Jackie]
tsuwm Offline
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Received_pronunciation

plummy 1resembling a plum: cosy reds and plummy blues

2British informal (of a person’s voice) having an accent thought typical of the English upper classes: a plummy voice rich with haughty disdain

3British informal choice; highly desirable: there are some plummy roles for the taking here
[Compact Oxford Dict.]

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#205979 - 06/05/12 12:54 AM Re: Plummy [Re: tsuwm]
olly Offline
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Recieved Pronounciation

Standard british English, Think BBC1

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#205980 - 06/05/12 06:34 AM Re: Plummy [Re: Jackie]
Faldage Offline
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Received Pronunciation

If not Jackie's question, at least mine, is not what it means but why call it Received?

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#205981 - 06/05/12 06:39 AM Re: Plummy [Re: Jackie]
Faldage Offline
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Not to mention what is it about plums? They're kinda shaped like pears and when something goes all pear shaped it's not a good thing.

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#205983 - 06/05/12 08:48 AM Re: Plummy [Re: Faldage]
tsuwm Offline
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? plums are pretty much round, at least here in flyover land. if they've gone pear-shaped, they're probly not too good for eating.

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#205984 - 06/05/12 08:49 AM Re: Plummy [Re: Jackie]
Faldage Offline
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But if your tones go all pear-shaped that's a good thing, right?

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#205985 - 06/05/12 09:13 AM Re: Plummy [Re: Faldage]
tsuwm Offline
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evidently going pear-shaped is different to having pear-shaped tones. the word detective ties the former phrase to the Royal Air Force, where learning to fly apparently includes doing acrobatic loops. Difficult for even an experienced pilot, these loops as performed by a novice are more than likely to appear lopsided and "pear-shaped." One can imagine observers on the ground saying, "Good. Good. Oh rats, he's gone all pear-shaped."

it's somewhat of a contranymic phrase, what?

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#205986 - 06/05/12 11:27 AM Re: Plummy [Re: Faldage]
BranShea Offline
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If not Jackie's question, at least mine, is not what it means but why call it Received?

In polite and plummy English Received here means: Accepted by General agreement and/or in spite of General Disagreement.

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#206031 - 06/08/12 10:02 PM Re: Plummy [Re: Jackie]
Jackie Offline

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Ah. Merci. wink Faldage got my meaning perzactly. And, who is General Disagreement? He sounds rather a shady character.

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#206293 - 06/30/12 11:04 AM Re: Plummy [Re: Jackie]
Rhubarb Commando Offline
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The original phrase for the upper-class English accent was, "... speaking as though he/she had a plum in his/her mouth." 60 years ago, this was the usual version over here - "plummy" is a more modern usage - I guess I first heard it 30 years ago, or so.

(PS - over here ir is also sometimes referred to as "BBC English," as the brisitsh Broadcasting Company had very strict rules about how their announcers spoke. They have eased the rules quite a bit over the past decade.)



Edited by Rhubarb Commando (06/30/12 11:07 AM)
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#206349 - 07/05/12 10:34 AM Re: Plummy [Re: Rhubarb Commando]
Jackie Offline

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speaking as though he/she had a plum in his/her mouth." Good gracious--I don't know how most people could get a plum in their mouth, let alone speak around it. Or--she said, being a bit slow on metaphors--did that come about perhaps because there was a time when only the rich could afford to buy plums?
Thank you, at any rate.

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#206352 - 07/05/12 11:43 AM Re: Plummy [Re: Jackie]
Rhubarb Commando Offline
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My theory is that, inthe C19, before intensive agriculture, plums were quite a bit smaller. And if they were thinking of Damsons - well, they really are quite small.
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#206390 - 07/10/12 09:59 AM Re: Plummy [Re: Rhubarb Commando]
bexter Offline
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Originally Posted By: Rhubarb Commando
(PS - over here ir is also sometimes referred to as "BBC English," as the brisitsh Broadcasting Company had very strict rules about how their announcers spoke. They have eased the rules quite a bit over the past decade.)



Quite a bit! Hah, some programmes have presenters who are totally incapable of using correct grammar, not to mention pronunciation...if it was just a different accent then I wouldn't mind so much, but they can't even talk properly to begin with. Sorry, pet peeve of mine wink
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#206393 - 07/10/12 11:37 AM Re: Plummy [Re: bexter]
LukeJavan8 Offline
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Pet peeve of mine as well. We have a couple networks that must
have no proofreaders, or whatever the people are called who
put the stuff on the teleprompters for the anchors to read.
And the bylines across the bottom are atrocious.
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#206395 - 07/10/12 12:00 PM Re: Plummy [Re: LukeJavan8]
Rhubarb Commando Offline
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>> some programmes have presenters who are totally incapable of using correct grammar, not to mention pronunciation <<

This is especially true of Radio 1 and 2, and some of the more "popular" TV channels. I mostly listen to Radios 3 & 4, where the problem, whilst existing there, is not acute.
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#206396 - 07/10/12 12:26 PM Re: Plummy [Re: Rhubarb Commando]
LukeJavan8 Offline
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Of course our radio and TV run on a different system, and
they go the whole gamut. When it is news broadcasting
is the time I object the most, thinking, "they should know
better". The other stations are clueless with their
"reality' TV mind, and so incapable of intelligent thought
to begin with. (And, yes, that is just my opinion.)
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#206400 - 07/10/12 05:13 PM Re: Plummy [Re: LukeJavan8]
Rhubarb Commando Offline
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Yes, we also have a whole range of commercial stations which are of vsriable quality. BBC, the non-comercial Corporation, is suppose to transcend such things! However, the absolute classic came just over a ear ago when James Naughtie, (pronounced 'Nocktie') who is a Scot with a superb accent and an admirable command of the language, managed to Spoonerise the name and title of Cabinet Minister James Hunt, Cultural Secretary .........


Edited by Rhubarb Commando (07/10/12 05:14 PM)
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#206402 - 07/10/12 08:45 PM Re: Plummy [Re: Rhubarb Commando]
LukeJavan8 Offline
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heh,heh: I can imagine.
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#208563 - 12/31/12 01:24 PM Re: Plummy [Re: LukeJavan8]
maverick Offline
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> imagine

In this wunnerfool digital age, no need! I doubt if your imagination would do justice to Jim's giggling attempts to regain control smile

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#208569 - 12/31/12 01:59 PM Re: Plummy [Re: maverick]
LukeJavan8 Offline
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...to say nothing of his coughing! Funny, much.
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#208588 - 12/31/12 04:56 PM Re: Plummy [Re: LukeJavan8]
Rhubarb Commando Offline
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Jim was speaking of this incident on the radio yesterday (on a programme recalling notable events of the past year) and said that he had, immediately after the programme, hand-written a letter to Jereny Hunt to apologise and explain and taken it, himself , to the Minsitry. He handed the letter to the receptionist, explaining that it should be immediately given to Jeremy Hunt. The receptionist turned to Jim and asked, "Who's he?"
smirk
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#208599 - 12/31/12 07:33 PM Re: Plummy [Re: maverick]
Jackie Offline

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maverick???? DARLING!! Oh! OH!!!! EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE
EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE
EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE
EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE
EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE---YOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Okay people, we're gonna be back to having fun!

Oh, I love you I love you I love you!!!!!!

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#208600 - 12/31/12 08:01 PM Re: Plummy [Re: Jackie]
LukeJavan8 Offline
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frown
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#208604 - 12/31/12 08:42 PM Re: Plummy [Re: Jackie]
Jackie Offline

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'S'all right,Luke; I love you too. But I've known my beloved maverick lots longer, and we have shared some things.

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#208610 - 01/01/13 10:01 AM Re: Plummy [Re: Jackie]
maverick Offline
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> !!!!!

Thanks for the welcome Mz J smile

Luke, I opened this page with my wife looking over my shoulder - she said somtin' like "hm... tell Jackie I send my love too!" smile

Farbeit for me to return to the topic an' all, but. Here's my take on RP for whatever it's not worth.

An Open University text I have references John Walker’s Critical Pronouncing Dictionary and Expositor of the English Language of 1791 and AJ Ellis’ On early English Pronunciation, 1869-1889 as early uses of this description but even more pointed is JC Wells’ citation of Daniel Jones* as the "great describer and codifier of the Received Pronunciation of English" in the 1890s.

Whatever its precise origins the term “received” seems to have (heh) been generally received to mean “the form of speech generally accepted by Society”. Note my use of the capital S: in my lex this term has always been freighted with social connotations that many parallel linguistic terms in other countries are not burdened with, such as for example General American or Standard Dutch or whatever. Wiki’s pretty good article (imho) quotes the phonetician Jack Windsor Lewis frequently who criticises the name "RP" as "invidious", a "ridiculously archaic, parochial and question-begging term" and opints out that American scholars find the term "quite curious". Beverley Collins and Inger Mees use the phrase "Non-Regional Pronunciation" for what is often otherwise called RP, and reserve the phrase "Received Pronunciation" for the "upper-class speech of the twentieth century".

What is objectively clear, whatever view is taken of the socio-cultural baggage train, is that RP is very narrowly used – Trudghill is widely quoted in his estimate that no more than 3% of the UK population use this form of lexical production, complete with stretched vowels, intrusive r’s and all the other phonological features also mentioned in wiki. He has an article that some of you may find interesting here.

There’s a good little discussion about the BBC’s relationship to RP, with some interesting quotes from BBC Pronunciation Unit personnel and so on here.


* Wells JC, 1982 Accents of English - An Introduction Cambridge University Press

PS I totally concur with the 'plums in the mouth' description as indicating an early 20th centrury upper class English accent.

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#208615 - 01/01/13 11:59 AM Re: Plummy [Re: Jackie]
Rhubarb Commando Offline
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Thanks for the links, mav - some very interesting stuff there. My own observations concur with those of Trudghill, that RP is evolving, rather than disappearing. One still hears it from relatively youthful people on the radio and TV, particularly on Radios 3 and 4 in Britain. However, an individual's lack of RP is no longer a great barrier to being taken seriously, so long as the accent isn't "broad."
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#208618 - 01/01/13 01:23 PM Re: Plummy [Re: maverick]
LukeJavan8 Offline
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Luke, I opened this page with my wife looking over my shoulder - she said somtin' like "hm... tell Jackie I send my love too!"


Yes??


Edited by LukeJavan8 (01/01/13 01:42 PM)
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#208620 - 01/01/13 01:33 PM Re: Plummy [Re: Rhubarb Commando]
maverick Offline
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> evolving

Yep, I completely agree with you Rhuby. I think just like other full-blown language communities, this has tended to devolve and evolve into variants and subsets, most of which are still markers of intellectual prestige but not necessarily plum-in-the-mouth social superiority.

And you are surely right that its lack can sometimes prove no hindrance – Melvin Barg’s adenoidal Cumbrian tones have interestingly enough proved resistant to the steamroller of both an Oxford education and sustained work at the Beeb.

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#208646 - 01/01/13 09:48 PM Re: Plummy [Re: maverick]
Rhubarb Commando Offline
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Yes, Melvin does have a touch of Cumberland to hs speech - until you talk to a Cumberland Sheep Farmer from the high fells, when you realise just how much he has modified his accent! (I live fairly near to the Lake District, so hear the speech of the people of Westmorland, Cumberland and Lancashire-over-the Sands fairly often!)
But this is completely usual. I am aware that my own speech has transmogrified quite a bit from a 20 year sojourn in darkest Northamtonshire and over 25 years in Lancashire has left its mark, too - I find myself saying 'baeth' instead of 'ba:th', and also shortening "the" to "t'" at times.
A Scottish lecturer colleague of mine, who has lived in Lancaster for around 40 yeqas, has gradually modified his accent over the 27 years I've known him, too.
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