Scottish accent vs Received Pronunciation – Akcent szkocki kontra angielska "wymowa przyjęta"




The aim of this paper is to present the results of the research devoted to the analysis of the Scottish accent of English.

As a source material for our analysis we used a previously prepared recording. We asked a Scottish native speaker of the English language to read a text – A brief history of Edinburgh and we recorded the reading.

Profile of the speaker

  • Language (native): Gaelic
  • Sex: female
  • Place of birth: Scotland
  • Age: 54
  • English learning method: both naturalistic and academic
  • Other languages: none
  • English-speaking residence: Essex
  • Education: higher, B.A. (linguistics)
  • Profession: a teacher of EAL (English as additional language)
  • Has lived in: Scotland for 34 years, then in England for 20 years


While examining the recording, we wanted to learn to what extent the Scottish accent of the speaker corresponds with the characteristics of the standard Scottish accent, which we find really interesting.

Our observations based on the selected examples are presented in the table below. It demonstrates the standard pronunciation of the given word with its realisation in the recording, which is confronted with the Scottish English variant.




Correlation between characteristics of RP, the recording and Scottish English






  1. As a result of contact with RP, the Scottish speaker acquired the pronunciation of Standard English.
  2. Assimilation of Standard English supplanted the majority of the features of the speaker's Scottish accent (Examples 1, 3, 8).
  3. Some of the features of Scottish English were eliminated by the speaker and do not appear (Examples 9-11).



  1. The strongest characteristics of the Scottish accent are its rhoticity and specific vowel length.
  2. Presence of very typical Scottish alveolar approximant (Examples 3, 6), shortening the vowels / / and /u / (Examples 4, 5) and lip rounding in articulation of the diphthong / / (Examples 2, 7) are among the features of Scottish English that are difficult to get rid of.
Buy my e-book "British Accents: Cockney, RP, Estuary English"
*współautorem tekstu jest T.Ernestowicz


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