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List of dialects of the English language

This is a list of dialects of the English language. Dialects are linguistic varieties which differ in pronunciation, vocabulary and grammar from each other and from Standard English (which is itself a dialect).

Dialects can be usefully defined as "sub-forms of languages which are, in general, mutually comprehensible".[1] British linguists distinguish dialect from accent, which refers only to pronunciation. Thus, any educated English speaker can use the vocabulary and grammar of Standard English. However, different speakers use their own local words for everyday objects or actions, regional accent, or Received Pronunciation, which within the U.K. is considered an accent distinguished by class rather than by region. American linguists, however, include pronunciation differences as part of the definition of regional or social dialects. The combination of differences in pronunciation and use of local words may make some English dialects almost unintelligible to speakers from other regions. The major native dialects of English are often divided by linguists into the three general categories of the British Isles dialects, those of North America and those of Australasia.[2]

By continent

Europe

United Kingdom

British English:

England

English language in England:

Scotland
Wales
Northern Ireland

Isle of Man

Channel Islands

Republic of Ireland

Hiberno-English:

  • Cork
  • Dublin
  • Donegal
  • Kerry
  • Limerick city
  • Midlands
  • North East
  • Sligo town
  • Waterford city
  • West
  • Wexford town
Extinct

Malta

North America

North American English

United States

American English

Canada

Canadian English:

Bermuda

Bermudian English

Native/American indigenous peoples

Native American English dialects:

Central and South America

Belize

Honduras

Falkland Islands

Caribbean

Anguilla
Antigua
The Bahamas
Barbados
Jamaica
Trinidad and Tobago
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

Asia

Brunei

Burma

Hong Kong

Pakistan

Thailand

India

Nepal

Malaysia

Philippines

Singapore

Sri Lanka

Africa

Cameroon

Kenya

Liberia

Malawi

Namibia

Nigeria

South Africa

South Atlantic

Uganda

Oceania

Australia

Australian English (AusE, AusEng):

New Zealand

New Zealand English (NZE, NZEng):

Other

Constructed

Manual encodings

These encoding systems should not be confused with sign languages such as British Sign Language and American Sign Language, which, while they are informed by English, have their own grammar and vocabulary.

Pidgins and creoles

The following are portmanteaus devised to describe certain local creoles of English. Although similarly named, they are actually quite different in nature, with some being genuine mixed languages, some being instances of heavy code-switching between English and another language, some being genuine local dialects of English used by first-language English speakers, and some being non-native pronunciations of English. A few portmanteaus (such as Greeklish and Fingilish) are transliteration methods rather than any kind of spoken variant of English.

See also

References

  1. ^ Wakelin, Martyn Francis (2008. First published 1978). Discovering English Dialects. Oxford: Shire Publications. p. 4. ISBN 978-0-7478-0176-4.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  2. ^ Crystal, David. The Cambridge Encyclopedia of the English Language, Cambridge University Press, 2003
  3. ^ JC Wells, Accents of English, Cambridge University Press, 1983, page 351
  4. ^ a b Hickey, Raymond (2005). Dublin English: Evolution and Change. John Benjamins Publishing. pp. 196–198. ISBN 90-272-4895-8. 
  5. ^ Hickey, Raymond (2002). A Source Book for Irish English (PDF). Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing. pp. 28–29. ISBN 90-272-3753-0. ISBN 1-58811-209-8 (US) 
  6. ^ http://www.hawaii.edu/satocenter/langnet/definitions/hce.html
  7. ^ "Virginia's Many Voices". Baconsrebellion.com. Retrieved 2010-11-29. 
  8. ^ Daniel Schreier, Peter Trudgill. The Lesser-Known Varieties of English: An Introduction. Cambridge University Press, Mar 4, 2010 pg. 10

External links