English Accents and Dialects: An Introduction to Social a... and over 2 million other books are available for Amazon Kindle . Learn more

Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Image not available

Start reading English Accents and Dialects on your Kindle in under a minute.

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

English Accents and Dialects: An Introduction to Social and Regional Varieties of English in the British Isles [Paperback]

Peter Trudgill , Arthur Hughes
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)

Available from these sellers.


Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition £17.17  
Paperback £24.45  
Paperback, 28 Jun 1996 --  
Audio, Cassette, Audiobook --  
There is a newer edition of this item:
English Accents and Dialects: An Introduction to Social and Regional Varieties of English in the British Isles English Accents and Dialects: An Introduction to Social and Regional Varieties of English in the British Isles 4.0 out of 5 stars (14)
In stock.

Book Description

28 Jun 1996
'English Accents and Dialects' is a unique introductory survey of the main regional and social varieties of English spoken in the British Isles. The authors discuss accent and dialect in the broader framework of language variation, including phonetic, phonological, grammatical, lexical, historical and stylistic differences. This is followed by a survey of the speech of twelve different areas of the British Isles. The cassette which accompanies the book consists of edited interviews (all transcribed in the book) with speakers from each of the different areas.

The third edition has been thoroughly revised and includes an entirely new chapter on Received Pronunciation. Following a general description the authors discuss variations within RP and consider some of the factors which account for this variation. The cassette now includes recordings of three different varieties of RP speech. Entirely new sections, with corresponding recordings, have been added on Lowland Scots, Devon and Dublin speech.

Product details

  • Paperback: 142 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge; 3 edition (28 Jun 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0340614455
  • ISBN-13: 978-0340614457
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 13.8 x 1.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 991,706 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, and more.

Product Description


English Accents and Dialects is a unique introductory survey of the main regional and social varieties of English spoken in the British Isles.
The Times Higher Educational Supplement

About the Author

Arthur Hughes was formerly Professor of English Linguistics at the University of Reading, UK.
Peter Trudgill is Honorary Professor of Sociolinguistics at the University of East Anglia, UK.
Dominic Watt is Lecturer in Forensic Speech Science at the University of York, UK. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
When foreign learners of English first come to the British Isles, they are usually surprised (and dismayed) to discover how little they understand of the English they hear. Read the first page
Explore More
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
Search inside this book:

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A technical project report 30 Jan 2011
By Prospero77 VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
At under 200 pages this is a concise yet robust introduction to the phonetic construction of English dialects in the UK. The CD is excellent and this will act as a solid underpinning to anyone studying dialectology. I almost graded the book at 4/5 stars but did not proceed for two reasons.

1/ The somewhat broad brush definition of the West Midlands accent. Trudgill makes absolutely no mention of the phonetic divergence between say Walsall and Coventry-significant to anyone living within 30 miles of the area. Coventry's dialect in particular is much closer to Leicester's which is dealt with in great detail. I just feel dialectologist's can use the get out clause that 'we're all on a cline or continuum of accents' and then proceed to ignore quite startling contrasts with lumpen generalities. Apologies Prof.Trudgill, I am just a lowly MA student I acknolwedge but there are some big differences in the central/west midlands.

2/The second point was the technical register of the text. This was somewhat mechanical and in the mode of a scientific project report. It would have benefited I feel from a less mechanical analysis and some informal/lighter descriptive touches. Those criticisms aside, it is a first class technical primer in English dialects-well worth a look.
Was this review helpful to you?
18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book describes regional variation in accents and dialects in Britain. It provides a brief description to ways of describing sounds, and then describes the language of several regions. I think it is essential to purchase the cassette that goes with the book - and what a pity that it is a cassette, rather than a CD. I think the book would be slightly heavy going unless you're quite familiar with the IPA notation. Also, I would have liked to have seen more accents covered - or at least more discussion of variation of accents within the region described. And no Hampshire! No highland Scots! No Manchester versus Leeds!
Was this review helpful to you?
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Invaluable tool for all actors! 27 Jun 2010
By D.Smith
This is the first product that I have ever reviewed on Amazon, but I really wanted to take the time to do it as I have found this book and CD to be so invaluable. I am constantly picking it up for a quick reference, even after having owned a copy for years.

Obviously the way that actors learn accents varies from person to person, but for me this is just right. I love to know the "rules" of an accent, so study the phonetics of any accent very thoroughly - in this book there is a detailed description of the phonetic differences for each accent compared to standard RP (which is also explained in great detail at the start of the book). There really is a LOT of detail given, including explanations as to why any particular difference exists and pointing out any anomalies in the speaker's accent compared to others in that region.

Each accent has a word list and a transcribed passage recorded by a native speaker. However, just to make you aware, some of the recordings aren't of perfect studio quality (it sounds like some may have been recorded in the speakers' living rooms) but they are more than clear enough to hear accurately.

From what I can remember on the CD (I use the book for reference more than the CD nowadays), the word list and passage for each accent are spoken by opposite genders, again helping to pinpoint any differences there.

Yes, there are some major regional accents missing from the book, but they had to draw the line somewhere I guess. This book really is amazing value for money and I wouldn't be without it. Now if only I could find a similarly concise and detailed book for American accents!
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Down to earth and to the point. 23 Jan 2002
By A Customer
This book really is a star. Written by people who really know how difficult it can be to pinpoint accents and dialects, this book provides maps and diagrams showing their locations, and differing phonological features of areas. The terminology is easily understood, so much so that it was a pleasure to read, always a delight for any long suffering linguistics students. Very handy for quick reference I would recommend it.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential to Understand the Book 7 Sep 2000
Format:Audio Cassette
The tape is essential to understanding the book. As the book happens to be the most up to date reference for modern British dialects, buying one without the other is rather like buying one shoe!
Any one with a passing interest in language would love this tape + book. Would also be of use to actors researching accents.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By Zara
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
If you are interested in the study of variation within GB then this book will bode well. It is often a core text for university students and forms a very strong basis for further study. Highly recommended.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By Gill P
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Fascinating stuff! Very informative and detailed. I wish I had time to sit down and read it all!
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Were these reviews helpful?   Let us know
Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars cd missing
totally useless unless accompanied by the cd. I ordered it twice and both times it came without the cd despite the fact that that the book itself says quite clearly that it is to... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Derek L.
4.0 out of 5 stars Some transcription quirks
Provides an excellent overview of the English accents and dialects of the British Isles, but the authors have made some strange choices in their IPA transcription. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Bjørn-Rune Hanssen
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Practical Resource for Accent Coaches
I have earlier versions of this useful handbook but this is by far the best version. It is much expanded and the gaps that existed in the earlier versions have now been filled. Read more
Published 13 months ago by Mr. Alex Taylor
3.0 out of 5 stars awful sound recording!
The book is certainly useful and interesting. My intention was to have used it during ESL training sessions here in Germany. Read more
Published on 22 Oct 2010 by mongolia
1.0 out of 5 stars NOT RECEIVED
I cannot share any opinion because I haven't received the book yet and I ordered it more than one month ago!!!
Published on 3 Nov 2009 by E. Diaz Prada
5.0 out of 5 stars Really Helpful.
I am a teacher and this book was extremly helpful in my english lesson. The children had a good laugh at what some of the dialects were. All in all a very helpful book.
Published on 3 Feb 2005
5.0 out of 5 stars A linguists perfect Christmas present!
Trudgill in a clear and interesting way guides us through the main dialects of the British Isles. The most up to date work on the subject, he covers modern urban speech as well as... Read more
Published on 7 Sep 2000 by Wang, Chao-Hong
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

Customer Discussions

This product's forum
Discussion Replies Latest Post
No discussions yet

Ask questions, Share opinions, Gain insight
Start a new discussion
First post:
Prompts for sign-in

Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions

Look for similar items by category