Talk:English language in Northern England

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What is the dialect spoken in Teesside. I cannot see it mentioned. Computerjoe's talk 19:43, 30 April 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I don't think there's a specific term for the Teesside dialect, like there is for Tyneside or Wearside. The following link has an interesting discussion on the subject, however - CharlieT 13:22, 21 June 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

There are a few local terms for the Teesside accent but the most common around the area is smoggie and to a lesser extent Tees-speak. The accent and dialect should really be given recognition as the Teesside accent cannot be grouped into either Yorkshire, Tyneside, Wearside nor Durham. It is a cross breed of the latter 4 with a bit of scouse thrown in for good measure (Middlesbrough having the 2nd largest amount of Irish migrant workers after Liverpool!). Tsider 00:41, 5 July 2007 (UTC)

Just dialects?[edit]

'Northern English' should also refer to the people and not just our dialects, any thoughts on this ? Gazh 11:51, 23 August 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Yes, an article about the inhabitants would have the title "Northern English People" or "The Northern English". Dbfirs 23:16, 9 December 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Dialects or accents?[edit]

A dialect is a variation within a language, it includes as a minimum, non-standard words. This article so far is about accents. True dialects are just about extinct in Britain and have been since the spread of television and radio in the early 20th century.

Whenever a distinction is made between the accents of northern and southern England, they usually centre around how terrible the people are in the north of England, and how perfect the people are in the south of England (even those who claim not to have an accent in the south can't pronounce the 'h', the 't' or the 'l' in the word 'hospital').

If accents are organised on a county by county basis, an element of chauvanism is introduced as county pits itself against its rivals. The term Mackem, as far as I understand, is a pejorative term. To ask about a Teesside accent shows that the writer believes it to be homogeneous; the pronounciation north of the river differs in words such as worry and encourage. If Teesside needs singling out as having a separate identity, then so does every other place: Whitby, Stokesley, Oldham, Blyth - variations in accents are endless.

In the modern world, education, social standing, occupation, social mobility, migration and travel in general, not to mention the influence of American and Australian TV shows, all add variation within each individual town.

In short, a Wikipedia article about so called dialects or accents, written by non-experts in the main, can only be misleading and vulgar. It would always struggle to be encyclopaedic. Francis Hannaway - talk Francis Hannaway 11:22, 9 December 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Yes, I agree with all of the above, except that dialects are not quite extinct, though I agree that they are becoming rarer. In most cases, they are reduced to an accent plus a few local words. This article ought to be about the historic Northern English, the precursor to all the local dialects, including Scots that claims (with only political justification) to be a separate language. I don't see why you think the article is written in humorous style, though I can see why it makes you laugh! I also don't see why you have removed the link to the proper name of an English region. Dbfirs 18:16, 9 December 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It's humorous because it names in all seriousness perorative names like Mackem and Scouser. The North East England region, apart from being an impotent political division, was changed to the geographic north east England, which is more fluid in definition. As you will know north east has lower case letters as an adjective.
However, the main reason for my edits was to state that this is not an article about "historic Northern English", but instead it is a hotch-potch of people's opinions and prejudices, and - worse than that - it is unreferenced original research which is not allowed on Wikipedia. Francis Hannaway - talk Francis Hannaway 00:19, 10 December 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I agree with the main reason for your edits, and I've already stated what I think the article should be about. I'm sorry you don't like the name of the region our esteemed government (whichever one it was) has chosen, and I still don't see why you want to place a tag saying that the article is written from a humorous point of view (perhaps you would use ignorant if such a tag existed?) Scouse, by the way, is the correct name for the Liverpool accent (I agree that dialect is hardly appropriate) and Scouser (not in the article) is the (joking) name for a person who speaks Scouse. Anyway, you've already made the alteration three times, and I don't want either of us to be accused of edit warring, so back to the main task of improving the article ... do you have access to any good reference material? I don't, unfortunately, otherwise I would make a start. Dbfirs 02:33, 10 December 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Northern English and Nortumbrian Old English - Confusion of terms.[edit]

There is potential for confusion here since the term 'Northern English' is also sometimes used as a technical term to describe the dialect groups descended from Northumbrian Old English. 'Northumbrian' in that context refers to the ancient Kingdom of Northumbria which once stretched from the Humber to the Firth of Forth, thus including Lowland Scots dialects and those of North East England, but not the North West. Cassandra. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:42, 9 June 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I'm not sure that confusion is a problem. Are these not varieties of the same language? Ancient Northumbria included some of the North West too. Lallands (and modern Scots) are just varieties of old Northern English. The article is about the modern language of the north of England, but perhaps we could include more to explain some of the origins. In practice, there are no clear dividing lines, just a gradual geographic variation. Dbfirs 06:30, 10 June 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Move discussion in progress[edit]

There is a move discussion in progress on Talk:English in southern England which affects this page. Please participate on that page and not in this talk page section. Thank you. —RMCD bot 09:59, 9 September 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Careful with terminology[edit]

Currently in the introduction section, the term Southern English is used. We should be careful to use the term Southern English. Although this is probably the term used in Great Britain, not all of the readers are British. I myself am American. On this side of the ocean, Southern English tends to refer to Southern American English. Simply, it can be a little confusing. The term Northern English is perfectly acceptable because it was defined in the opening paragraph. However, I am going to change Southern English to Southern England English. If anybody wishes to undo this change, you do reserve the right. Thank you. (talk) 03:16, 30 November 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I have actually changed to "Southern English English." The text is a hyperlink, and prior to my edit, when clicked on, the search engine would search for "Southern English English." Anyway, there was a small change of plans. Over and out. (talk) 03:23, 30 November 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]


Very few people in northern England uses the vowel /æ/. It is used by about 1% of the English population who speak old conservative RP. Even the OED now uses /a/ to transcribe this vowel. I appreciate that Wikipedia uses /æ/ to cover a wide range of pronunciations from /a/ to /ea/, but its use to convey a particular northern English pronunciation seems misleading. Dbfirs 06:08, 14 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Incomplete table[edit]

The table "Major distinctive sounds of Northern English" currently lacks KIT, LOT, CLOTH, CHOICE, NORTH, NEAR, SQUARE, START, NORTH, FORCE, CURE, and commA. Though NORTH/START/commA are probably the same as THOUGHT/PALM/lettER, that's still a huge, inexcusable omission. Nardog (talk) 02:05, 13 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@Nardog: Some areas of the North are still rhotic, but I don't think that most (or any?) of northern accents have a contrastive FORCE vowel. AFAIK, it's optional in Brummie (as [ɐʊ̯ə] or something like that, it's basically GOAT + COMMA), but I'm not sure about accents spoken further up north. Mr KEBAB (talk) 11:54, 13 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Derbyshire mention in Phonology table?[edit]

Hi everyone, I have noticed the table in the phonology section also includes Derbyshire even though it states it is a table of Northern English accents. However, Derbyshire is very much a county of the East Midlands (even though it's northernmost parts may be considered by many as being in the north) and Derbyshire English is usually classed among the East Midlands dialects. Now I probably could say accents like Glossop, Chesterfield or maybe the Hope Valley area bear more similarities to Northern English accents than the East Midlands, but I still don't think Derbyshire deserves a prominent mention in the phonology table for an article concerning accents and dialects of Northern England. I have also looked at the three references and none of them seemed to mention Derbyshire, so I do propose removing the (in my opinion) inaccurate and misleading mention of Derbyshire from the table (in any case, North and North East Lincolnshire aren't mentioned in the table even though they are officially in Northern England). I thought of removing it myself but I don't want to mess the table up as I'm no expert at editing tables which is why I've brought the matter here. Just wondering what other editors think of this, many thanks. Broman178 (talk) 09:26, 23 July 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Since no one has bothered to add to this in over two months, I've removed Derbyshire myself from the table with difficulty as I'm no expert with tables. If there are any mistakes, please do correct it or if you disagree with the removal, then please discuss it here, many thanks. Broman178 (talk) 09:21, 29 September 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Unstressed y at the ends of words[edit]

In the article, it states:

"In most areas, the letter y on the end of words as in happy or city is pronounced [ɪ], like the i in bit, and not [i]. This was considered RP until the 1990s. The tenser [i] is found in the far north, and in the Merseyside and Teesside areas."

Do we have any evidence or references for this, please? It seems so strange to me that a pronunciation which is now stigmatised was seen as "standard" in the 90s (talk) 00:07, 9 March 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]