Volume 28, Issue 1
  • ISSN 0172-8865
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9730
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Previous research on Shetland speech has not explicitly dealt with speech forms leaning towards Scottish Standard English (SSE) but has focused on Shetland dialect, the local Scots dialect. This paper argues that a local accent of SSE can be identified in Shetland, especially for speakers in Lerwick, the largest town in Shetland. The accent has not been previously fully described, and this paper presents an analysis of systemic, distributional and realizational aspects of the vowel and consonant systems, based on data from a recent survey (Sundkvist 2004). It is suggested that the Lerwick accent displays a phonemic inventory and lexical distribution similar to that commonly reported for mainland accents of SSE, with the exception of a somewhat larger inventory of vowel phonemes. At the level of phonetic realization, the Lerwick accent shares several features with mainland varieties of SSE, but displays a number of localized features in addition.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): Lerwick; Scottish Standard English; Shetland; Shetland dialect; vowels
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