NOT TO MAKE NORFOLK PEOPLE CROSS
TO SOUND LIKE YOU MIGHT EVEN COME FROM NORFOLK!
instead of it.
The grammar of Standard English distinguishes between two
different forms of most of the personal pronouns. The distinction
has to do with whether the pronoun is the subject or the object
of the sentence as the following examples show:
like Brenda but Brenda likes me
He saw Ashley but Ashley saw him
She loves Colin but Colin loves her
We adore Stewart but Stewart adores us
They admire Keith but Keith admires them
there is no such difference in the case of it:
It is raining and I hate it.
Norfolk, though, we do make a difference. We still use it
in places where we would use me, him,
her, us, them.
But in places where we would use I, he,
she, we, they we
dont use it but that.
is most obvious in weather expressions. Where other
people would say: its raining, we
say things like:
Thats hot today
notice that we still say things like:
hated it when that was raining.
We love it when thats hot.
it is not just in weather expression that this occurs:
the cat? Thats on the sofa.
NORFOLK LONG O
this is quite hard, so please concentrate.
Norfolk we have two different vowels corresponding to the
single long o of other forms of English. Happily,
its mostly possible to tell which word has which vowel
by looking at the spelling.
spelt with ou, ow and ol like
soul, know, told
are pronounced rather like they are in much of the rest of
southern England, with a noticeable diphthong a vowel
which changes its quality between the beginning and the end.
the other hand, long o words which are spelt
with oa or o_e or just o,
such as coal, hope, most,
have a very different and distinctive Norfolk vowel which
to many outsiders sounds very like the long u
sound of loose but in fact its
not the same. Its pronounced further back in the mouth
and is very similar to the sound of ou in French
nous we and the long sound of
u in German gut good.
means, that in Norfolk, pairs of words like these arent
pronounced the same:
Beatles 1970s album used a pun, Rubber Soul,
which doesnt work in the Norfolk dialect. And writing
IOU for I owe you
doesnt work in Norfolk either, because the name of the
letter o and the word owe are
not pronounced the same.
is another complication here, though. Another well-known feature
of the Norfolk dialect is the short o.
term refers to the pronunciation of words which belong in
the left-hand column [above] like road,
loaf, coat, whole,
home, comb, bone,
stone, loke, throat,
the Norfolk dialect these words can but dont
have to be pronounced with the same vowel as foot.
This means that road can rhyme with good,
loke can rhyme with book, and
throat and goat can rhyme with
is optional, but acquiring this feature will truly qualify
you as an Advanced-Level Norfolk Dialect Learner.
trick is, of course, that you have to remember that you can
use this pronunciation with words like the ones Ive
just listed, but you cannot use it with words which belong
in the right-hand column [above] such as grown,
from the Basic Level: NEVER pronounce the r
in words like cart, bird, fort,
beard, dared, muttered!
Trudgill FBA President of FOND
Honorary Professor of Sociolinguistics at the
University of East Anglia