R-droppers verses American Words

Ryan   Saturday, December 13, 2003, 10:13 GMT
Wow, that's a lot of homonyms. I'm glad that General American rhoticity gets rid of so many of these.
Dictionary   Tuesday, December 16, 2003, 00:04 GMT
Something that the Merriam-websters dictionary said about ''r'' droppers.

\ [a'] \ as in father as pronounced by those who do not rhyme it with bother. The pronunciation of this vowel varies regionally. In eastern New England and southern England it is generally pronounced farther forward in the mouth than \ä\ but not as far forward as \a\. In New York City and the southeastern U.S. it may have much the same quality as \ä\ but somewhat greater duration. In areas in which \r\ is not pronounced before another consonant or a pause, \[a']\ occurs for the sequence transcribed in this book as \är\. (See the sections on \ä\ and \r\.) In these areas \[a']\ also occurs with varying frequency in a small group of words in which a in the spelling is followed by a consonant letter other than r and is not preceded by w or wh, as in father, calm, palm, and tomato but not in watch, what, or swap (though \[a']\ does sometimes occur in waft). Especially in southern England and, less consistently, in eastern New England \[a']\ occurs in certain words in which \a\ is the usual American vowel and in most of which the vowel is followed by \f\, \th\, \s\, or by \n\ and another consonant, as in the words after, bath, mask, and slant. The symbol \[a']\ is also used in the transcription of some foreign-derived words and names. This vowel, as in French patte "paw" and chat "cat," is intermediate between \a\ and \ä\ and is similar in quality to the \[a']\ heard in eastern New England.
Juan   Tuesday, December 16, 2003, 09:23 GMT
Re Ryan

>>Wow, that's a lot of homonyms. I'm glad that General American rhoticity gets rid of so many of these. <<

I dont think its that big of a deal because it all depends on the context that the word is used. So there should be no problem in most cases one would think.

One negative aspect of non-rhoticism though is that children would have a lot more difficulty learning how to read than their rhotic counterparts. But thats just an educated guess I have no evidence or proof. Its only a gut feeling.
Hank Brass   Tuesday, December 16, 2003, 19:11 GMT
1. Americans are used to hearing British speech and, lately, Australian speech.

2. Not all British accents have dropped Rs.

3. Several US accents do have dropped Rs, particularly in the New York and Boston areas.