Aussie English and Aussie Accent

Jim   Sunday, March 09, 2003, 16:41 GMT
Can anybody here help me to lean Australian English, grammar, accent, spelling, idioms, phrasrs and rhyming slang?
Jim   Sunday, March 09, 2003, 23:42 GMT
I could help you but it's going to be confusing if we're both using the same name.
kurre   Sunday, March 09, 2003, 23:44 GMT
G'day mait.

That's all I know.
Das Tray   Sunday, March 09, 2003, 23:54 GMT
Put some shrimp on the barbie... Thats all I know.
Pierre   Monday, March 10, 2003, 02:01 GMT
Err...why do you wanna learn a strain accent?
Jim   Monday, March 10, 2003, 02:57 GMT
Why the flamin' buggery not, mate? Though I gotta admit I like your thorn-in-everyone's-side style Pierre. We know you're dirty about the fact that English is the defacto international language but I don't blame ya, mate it would have to suck for anyone whose native language isn't English.

"G'day mate!" is a good Australianism and it is used often enough. What I think Kurre was trying to get at by the odd spelling is the fact that the diphthong in "mate" comes out differently in the Aussie/New Zealand accent. I'm afraid that the spelling "mait" doesn't really convey this fact. The words "pane" and "pain" are pronounced the same.

The difference in the pronunciation of this diphthong in the Aussie/NZ accents and the Recieved Pronunciation/General American accents is that it starts with your mouth more widely open. If /@/ is the "a" in "pat", /e/ is the "e" in "pet" and /i/ is the "i" in "pit", then the "ai" in "pain" would be /@i/ in the Aussie/NZ accent whereas it would be /ei/ in the RP/GA accent. Also the /t/ often gets dropped at the end of "mate" so "G'day mate!" could come out like /g..d@i m@i/.

I've heard it said the "Put another shrimp on the barbie." is as Aussie as "The top of the morning to you!" is Irish, i.e. it's a fake. The arguement is that Aussies use the word "prawn" not "shrimp". I don't know but I've always thought that prawns and shrimp were different animals: prawns are bigger. I'm Aussie and I use both words but, come to think of if, why, then, would you chuck just one puny shrimp on the barbie? You'd either want to throw a prawn on or a handful of shrimp. It's probably a fake. Don't hear people using this expression in Aussie unless we're having a go at ourselves (which we often do).

The word "reckon" is in frequent use in Australia. An American friend who was hanging around Aussies copped a bit of flack when he brought this word home. It's not really an Aussie word, they used to use it in America centuries ago, it's just got unpopular over there whilst it's still in use in Australia. You can say "What d' ya reckon?" for "What do you think?", "I reckon you're a wanker." for "I think you're full of yourself." or you can just say "Reckon!" to show that you agree with someone.