Friday, 27 April 2007

Word of the day

Today's word is uptalk (thank you Rebecca). This is the word which describes the rising intonation which occurs in some speech in the final accented syllable or syllables of a sentence or utterance. We Australians (and also the Canadians) are considered the world's greatest exponents of this particular perculiarity (especially Queenslanders), but the great linguistic authority that is Wikipedia credits the NZers with its origins. Australian speech is mostly footnotes (the famous South Australian terminal l, for example). Listen for uptalk next time the actual semantic content of a conversation isn't holding your attention.

1 comment:

SharonU said...

Would you believe that my 14mth old daughter already displays the use of "uptalk" in her baby gaggle? I was discussing this with a fellow mother, who happens to be Irish, and she had picked up on it too. She said it was an "Aussie thing." Funny how it is appearing in someone so young! Just thought I'd share! 8-)