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New Zealand English


pronounce the 'r' in 'bird', 'work' as the 'r' sound is said at the beginning of ... Kiwi. bring a plate of food. difficulties without an obvious solution ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: New Zealand English

New Zealand English
  • Swetlana Braun
  • Marijana Bubic
  • Jana Burdach
  • Linda Rohlfing
  • Rabea Schwarze

  • Origin
  • Variations
  • Pronunciation
  • Vocabulary
  • Comparison of NZE and Australian English

Very simimilar to its giant neighbour Australia
NZ Accent
Differences reflect the different histories of
settlement and aborigial relations
the last habitable landmass in the world to be
first English-speaking settlers arrived in 1792
(Australian rather than British)
New Zealand
Officially founded when British and Maori
chieftains signed the 1840 Treaty of Waitangi,
the founding document of NZ
settleling from Australia and Britain (a.w.a.
Ireland and America) enormously increased
Treaty of Waitangi (1840)
Large-scale organised settlement gtby mid-century
the indigenous Maori were outnumbered by the
incoming Pakeha
Influenced by accents and English varieties, all
the settlers brought along
NZ English
Could be traced back to areas all over Britain
and Ireland, probably "pre-mixed" in Australia
spoken by a largely agricultural people, first
inhabitants of NZ
very important source of NZE vocabulary
Maori language
makes it uniquely different from any other
English dialect
most of the Maori words coming into NZE were for
plants and animals, which where unknown to the
The closest dialectal relative of NZE is
Australian English
NZ English
In many ways NZE is decendent from it
similar developments because of similar inputs
from English, Scottish, and Irish dialects
  • Pitcairn English
  • Developed from mutineers settling on Pitcairn in
    1790. Some people were removed to Norfolk in
    1859. An in-group language used to assist in the
    preservation of identity.
  • People speak standard English as first language.
  • Classification Cant, English-Tahitian 

  • New Zealand Maori or Te Reo Maori
  • Formerly fragmented into a number of regional
  • (North Auckland, South Island, Taranaki,
    Wanganui, Bay of Plenty, Rotorua-Taupo, Moriori),
  • some of which diverged quite radically from
    what has become the standard dialect.
  • - There are some regional variants of
    pronunciation and accent, and a small

  • number of lexical differences, but it is
    basically a single language across the country.
  • Used officially for legal needs. Until the 20th
    century spoken throughout NewZealand. 33 of the
    fluent speakers are over 60 years old, 38 are
    between 45 and 59 (1995).
  • All or most of the Maori-speakers use English as
    second language.
  • Classification Eastern-Polynesian, Tahitian

  • South Island
  • Pronunciation
  • - "Southland burr" in which a trilled 'r'
    appears rhotic
  • -gt pronounce the 'r' in "bird", "work" as the 'r'
    sound is said at the beginning of a word, and so
    on, while other New Zealanders do not
    (non-rhotic pronounce "r" only if it is followed
    by a vowel)
  • gt Immigration from Scotland

  • Lexis
  • wee small
  • to do the messages to go shopping
  • Many of the region's place names also reflect
    their Scottish origin
  • e.g. Invercargill and Dunedin

  • New Zealand English is close to Australian
    English in pronunciation
  • But - shows more affinity to English of
  • Southern England
  • - shows influence of Maori Speech
  • - shows some Scottish and Irish
  • main differences of New Zealand English in
    comparison to other Englishes are shifted vowel

  • Front vowels and the flattened 'i'
  • front vowels are pronounced higher in the mouth
    than in British English
  • the most noticeable difference is the flat "i",
    which is lower and further back so that
    illusion is pronunced in a way sounding like
  • allusion, illusion
  • Pete pit pet pat

  • The Additional Schwa
  • Newzealanders will insert the schwa to words such
    as grown, and mown, resulting in grow-en and
  • but groan and moan are unaffected which means
    that these word pairs can be distinguished by
    ear, unlike in British English
  • groan, grown
  • moan, mown

  • Distinction between /e?/ /??/
  • Words like "chair" and "cheer", (/t?e?/, /t???/)
    are usually pronounced the same way (/t???/, that
    is as "cheer" in British, American or Australian
    English). The same occurs with "share" and
    "shear" (both pronounced /???/), bear and beer,
    spare and spear.
  • kea, care, cheer, chair
  • beer, bear
  • spear, spare, shear, share

  • Lack of distinction between /?/ /?/
  • There is a tendency for some words to be
    pronounced with /?/ rather than /?/, especially
    in those cases where the vowel with this
    particular sound is a stressed "a".
  • words like "warrior" and "worrier" are harder to
    differentiate in New Zealand English than in many
    forms of English.

  • Lack of distinction between ferry and fairy
  • for many speakers of New Zealand English, the
    vowel in ferry is raised and becomes
    indistinguishable from fairy
  • the vowel length distinction is almost always
  • ferry, fairy

  • Use of mixed accents
  • The common New Zealand pronunciation of the
    trans- prefix rhymes with "ants.
  • This produces mixed accenting of the a's in
    words like "transplant" whereas in British
    English and most dialects apart from Australian
    English the same accent is placed on both
  • example, transplant

Vocabulary-unique to New Zealand-
  • Choice! ?
  • Chur bro ?
  • Jandals ?
  • Togs ?
  • Heaps ?
  • excellent
  • shortened fromcheers brother, thanks!
  • blend of Japanese Sandal, meaning flip-flop
  • swim suit
  • a lot of

Vocabulary-shared with Australia or other
  • Gday!/ Gidday! (also AusE) Gidday mate! (NZE) ?
  • Sweet as ?
  • Good Day
  • awesome (as as an intensifier, eg. hot as)

Phrases-unique in New Zealand-
  • Bring a plate ?
  • Up the Puhoi (a river in NZ) without a paddle ?
  • How are you feeling? Oh, a box of birds ?
  • To give s.o. hassles ?
  • Kiwi ?
  • bring a plate of food
  • difficulties without an obvious solution
  • feeling very good, happy
  • to hassle s.o. into doing or annoying them
  • New Zealander, also used as an adjective

A lot more on

  • (visited on
    May 24th, 2006)
  • (May
    28th, 2006)
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    28th, 2006)
  • http//
    (May 30th, 2006)
  • http//
    (May 30th, 2006)