american or british

Youness   Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:50 pm GMT
May I ask You. What is the best pronouciation is it américan or british????
Guest   Tue Apr 18, 2006 2:08 pm GMT
The American rhotic accent. All other accents are underpronouncing the most important letter in the language.
Guest   Tue Apr 18, 2006 4:55 pm GMT
What do you mean by "rohtic accent"?.. does it mean American pronounce Rs... caR, ColouR...etc
Guest   Tue Apr 18, 2006 5:27 pm GMT
British... british came first.
Larissa   Thu Apr 20, 2006 11:16 am GMT
I'd like to know the British equivalents of these American words:

Another question, do Americans use the word "notebook" for 3 British equivalents: "copybook", "exercise book" and "rough book"?
Thank you
Jim C, York   Thu Apr 20, 2006 1:38 pm GMT
We tend to say Motorway for highway and freeways.
We do have The Highways agency (name might have changed, people are constantly "rebranding" nowerdays) And we say "on the highways and byways" and we used to have highway robbery, those are the only times it comes up though.

Is this in reference to the New Jersey turnpike? Ive heard it spoken of in songs and on films but I have no idea what it is. Is it like a load of interchanges, where roads converge and a complicated set up of "on ramps" and "off ramps" as you lot say, and bridges come together?

We have Spagetti Junction near Birmingham.
Guest   Thu Apr 20, 2006 2:15 pm GMT
>> British... british came first. <<
Yes, but most of their dialects sound awful because they underpronounce their r's.
Damian in Edinburgh   Thu Apr 20, 2006 2:48 pm GMT
Ok...a wee spot of light relief......the "American invasion" of the Highbury Football* ground in North London last night:,,2-2006180313,00.html

*Football means soccer, ok? ;)
Damian - tea break Edinbu   Thu Apr 20, 2006 3:00 pm GMT
highway = usually just any road, usually A class roads in the UK, eg the A9. Secondary roads are B class eg B1066.

freeway = motorway M class roads eg the M1 or M8
turnpike = a toll road, the most well known in this area being the Forth Road Bridge, where you pay a toll at the toll booths before you proceed across the bridge.

There are not anything like the same number of toll roads in the UK as there are on the European Continent, where they are very prolific. In the 18th/19th century there were such toll roads in the UK - usually a sort of small building called a turnpike on the roadside by a gateway, where the toll-master used to live and where he collected the toll dues from the horsedrawn carriages and stagecoaches and then allowed them to proceed on their journey along the rutted unpaved roads which were dusttracks in summer and mudbaths in winter, or buried in snowdrifts in those days when many UK winters in the Little Ice Age (1450-1850) were more severe than they are now.
american nic   Fri Apr 21, 2006 12:32 am GMT
What are the differences in use within the US pertaining to 'highway', 'freeway', 'turnpike', etc., type words? For example, in my neck of the woods, all of them are called 'highway' (although I'm not sure what a turnpike is - we don't have those in Minnesota), except for interstates, which are often called...'interstates'. The word 'freeway' is pretty rare around here since the nearest toll road is outside of Chicago.
G_DANS   Fri Apr 21, 2006 1:03 am GMT
'Highways' here are roads that cross provincial (state) borders while 'motorways' or 'expressways'(this term is becoming popular) are 'freeways' within a province (state).

The NWE16 (North Western Expressway 16) from the City Centre to West Habour.

SH1(State highway 1) or IPH1 (Interprovincial Highway 1) is the main North South road.

Don't be surprised if you ask them for directions and they give somekind of coded message like NWE16 -> EP123 -> 1L -> h48.

(Take the North Western Expressway 16, exit at exitpoint 123, take a first left and the house is number 48.)
Kirk   Fri Apr 21, 2006 1:20 am GMT
<<What are the differences in use within the US pertaining to 'highway', 'freeway', 'turnpike', etc., type words? For example, in my neck of the woods, all of them are called 'highway' (although I'm not sure what a turnpike is - we don't have those in Minnesota), except for interstates, which are often called...'interstates'. The word 'freeway' is pretty rare around here since the nearest toll road is outside of Chicago.>>

We don't use the word "turnpike" in California. The most common term here is generally "freeway," altho "highway" may be used to refer to rural freeways (interstate highways).

Technically, *all* freeways are highways but not all highways are freeways. A freeway is a limited controlled-access highway (onramps and offramps are the only way to get on or off--no intersections), while a highway is not necessarily limited controlled access (tho many may be). I've heard people from the Midwest refer to being on a highway/freeway/interstate as "being on the interstate" but here even if you're on a designated interstate you're still not as likely to use the term "interstate." If a friend called me and asked me where I was and I happened to be traveling on Interstate 5, I'd never say "I'm on the interstate." I'd say "I'm on I-5" or "I'm on the 5" or if I wasn't being specific I'd say "I'm on the freeway" (if it was an urban part of it) and "I'm on the highway" (for the rural parts it goes thru).

One slight lexical difference between Northern California and Southern California is that in so-cal people are more likely to add the definite article before the freeway number while that doesn't usually happen in nor-cal. An example from each:

SF Bay Area: "Take 80 (or you can say "I-80") south, 580 east, then 680 north."

Los Angeles Area: "Take the 5 south to the 405 south then take the 10 east."

In all of those cases those are designated interstates but no one would call them such. People in any part of the state would just say they're "on the freeway." In nor-cal you can also say "I" before an interstate freeway's number but only if it's a one/two-digit number like 5 or 80, not the regional offshoots with three numbers. You can say you're on "I-5" but no one says "I'm on I-680" even tho that's the official name.

Whew--hope that wasn't too confusing :) It's interesting because how freeways are talked about is one of the few shibboleths between Northern and Southern Californians. We all have pretty much the same accent (I can't tell what region someone is from in California by their accent--tho I can often tell when people *aren't* from California) so everyone blends in until you start talking about freeways. Some people are fiercely convinced that their way is the "right" one and that those in the other part of the state say it "wrong." It's amusing to listen to people argue about it or hear an unsuspecting newbie from the other part of the state get funny looks for using the other system. I follow the "when in Rome" policy--when in Norcal I follow the Norcal pattern and when in So-Cal (where I currently live) I follow the So-cal pattern.
lu   Fri Apr 21, 2006 1:36 am GMT
How fast can you drive on a freeway and a highway??
lu   Fri Apr 21, 2006 1:37 am GMT
I mean the speed limit.
Kirk   Fri Apr 21, 2006 1:53 am GMT
<<The word 'freeway' is pretty rare around here since the nearest toll road is outside of Chicago.>>

I assume you meant that because you were assuming "freeway" has to do with cost--historically the "free" part of the word was coined to refer to the flow of traffic, not the cost (or lack thereof). Also, while we're on the topic we have hardly any toll roads in California (they're certainly not the norm).

<<How fast can you drive on a freeway and a highway??>>

That depends. In California the maximum speed limit on a freeway thru urban areas is generally 65 mph/105 kph. In rural areas it may go up to 70mph/110kph. However, people tend to drive faster than the maximum anyway. On a typical Californian urban freeway the normal speed of traffic is likely to be between 65-75mph (105-121 kph), with the furthest left lane (the fastest lane) often having a de facto speed of 80mph/129kph or possibly a bit higher. On rural interstate highways the averages may be higher--many people travel at an average of 75-80 mph/121kph-129kph or higher on interstate highways in rural areas. I know when I drive on rural interstates I generally keep it in the 80-85 mph/129-137kph range, which is within the norm of normal traffic flow given the context. On an urban freeway I'm likely to keep it in the high 60s-75 (about 107-120kph) range, which is pretty normal assuming there are no traffic problems to slow me down :)