Slip of the tongue

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Reading Erikka Askeland’s column (Perspective, 4 May), I momentarily wondered if I had bought the wrong newspaper.

For this lady’s information, “the majority of us reading this” do pronounce “Don” and “dawn” identically and sound the letter R wherever it occurs; for the simple reason, which she seems to have overlooked, that she is writing for a Scottish paper with a predominantly Scottish readership.

There is no such thing as 
“British English”, and no valid generalisations about speech in “the UK”.

The accent, vocabulary and idioms of what the English call (or used to call) the home counties have no more status in this country, Wales, or for that matter northern England, than in North America.

The majority speech form 
here is Scottish English, a form 
of the international lingua franca as well-defined and well-
established as Australian, Canadian or Nigerian English – and if a columnist writing for Scotland’s national newspaper does not know this, it is high time she learned.

Derek McClure

Rosehill Terrace