Thursday, 21 October 2010

chameleonic pronunciation (2): create

The verb create and forms derived from it may undergo yod dropping in General British. Thus we might get /krieɪt/ -> /krjeɪt/ -> /kreɪt/.
Jeremy Hunt, Nick Clegg and Gordon Brown (my thanks go to Jack Windsor Lewis for drawing my attention to Mr Brown's pronunciation of create) are speakers who fairly regularly drop the yod in this verb. Until recently we've had three swallows to make an estival yod-dropping. A few days ago I stumbled upon a 'royal swallow' - Charles Philip Arthur George Windsor, better known as His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales. Prince Charles recently published a book entitled Harmony. A separate audiobook is available with recordings of the voice of the prince. Sample tracks can be founded on the Internet. At one point he says: "For many years I have been working to create effective partnerships between the private, public and non-governmental organisation sectors, [...]." Create is pronounced /kreɪt/ in this sentence.
The yod-droppings observed could have been caused by sentence rhythm and speed of enunciation. Four swallows don't make a sound shift. In other words, we have to wait and see what happens in the near future, but maybe it's an edging towards a complete loss of yod.


  1. Technically, Prince Charles does not have a surname. So it's Charles Philip Arthur George of the House of Windsor...!

  2. @Martin J Ball:
    Unthinkable thought: If the UK were to abolish its monarchy, would HRH have to take on a surname?