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Ask-A-Linguist Message Details
|Question:||I have heard BBC speakers pronounce these words with emphasis on the syllable in caps: CONtribute, REfuse (as in I refuse to be...) There are lots of others where Brits routinely stress a different syllable than Americans. Why is this? Thanks, Cynthia Dessen Classics Deptartment, retired UNC-Chapel Hill|
|Reply:||The simple answer is that the British English stress system differs from the American, and I would say it's been diverging. Analyzing English stress is complicated by a number of factors, so unfortunately I can't be more specific.|
|Reply From:||Elizabeth J Pyatt click here to access email|