Tuesday, 15 September 2015

epenthetic glottal stop

Sharp-eared Paul Carley spotted an interesting instance of epenthesis. To preserve the sound sample for some time, I recorded it for you to listen to. It's in an interview by BBC Radio 4 with Diane Abbott, Labour MP for HackneyNorth and Stoke Newington.
credit: www.dianeabbott.org.uk
 Paul found an epentheticglottal stop in the word also in this sentence of hers:
You can also serve - we also serve - we serve on the back benches.
Listen to the sound file:

This is a rather rare instance of epenthesis of a glottal plosive between /l/ and /s/.


  1. Well spotted. Perhaps she's doing German lessons? I notice she's avoiding an expected vocalized /l/, so the stop might be triggered in the transition from the lateral to the /s/ articulations. Intriguing it should happen twice. Do you have the link to the original program?

    1. It's here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b069gvl9 at 17:50 (26 days left to listen to)

    2. Thank you Petr, haven't listened to Ms Abbott properly yet, but plenty of regional examples too on the same program. Noticed many more dark /l/ where I expected vocalized /l/, definitely a step on the regional sociolect scale.