Which English do you speak?

Posted: 17th February 2010 by admin in Uncategorized

Has anyone posted a blog on British English vs. American English yet? I haven’t found one so I shall start one 😀 My interest in the two dialects started when I came to America with a very ‘British’ accent and vocabulary. My friends would laugh and tell me, “Say wohteh and tomauwtow and dungarees” and then they would hoot with laughter when I did. In order to survive I had to learn to speak ‘American’ – “wahder and tomayto and overahlls” – although I stubbornly refused to give up a lot of my ‘native’ vocabulary and I now use it whenever I think someone will understand. If anyone would like to add to this list please do, because I never actually lived in England and my British English was learned from my non-British parents 😀 so, it’s by no means an exhaustive list and sometimes I get the two mixed up.

American English vs. British English

Bandaid = Plaster

Stroller = Pram, pushchair, carriage?

Cart = trolley

Elevator = lift (or is it the other way around?!)

Sweater = jumper (I once told a guy in America I liked his jumper; he had no comment)

(Sweater with buttons) = cardigan

Jumper = some sort of (jean) dress with no sleeves

Overalls = dungarees 😀 (does anyone else use this word?)

Closet = cupboard/wardrobe

kettle/pot = pan (at least in my vocabulary)

and the list goes on… help me out, I don’t even know all my British vocab 🙂

  1. Anonymous says:

    That’s great Anthea! It’s really quite something isn’t it, variations on the same language. I’m still confused, I live in America, and people here tell me I have an accent and they think it sounds British. When I go to England my relatives tell me I have an accent that is American… I never know what to believe :

  2. Anonymous says:

    That’s great! I just realised I have been saying the same thing for “laboratory” – “la-BOR-a-TOR-ee.” No wonder my accent is confused 😀