Page:A book of the west; being an introduction to Devon and Cornwall.djvu/34

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12
THE WESTERN FOLK

"What is the river that flows through your valley?"

Not a child knew.

"What is the name of the highest peak of Dartmoor you see yonder?"

Not a child knew.

And this is the rubbish in place of education that at great cost is given to our children.

Education they do not get; stuffing they do.

They acquire a number of new words, which they do not understand and which they persistently mispronounce.

"Aw my! isn't it hot? The prepositions be runin' all hover me."

"Ay! yü'm no schollard! I be breakin' out wi' presbeterians."

The "oo" when followed by an "r" has the sound "o" converted into "oa"; thus "door" becomes "doar."

"Eau" takes the sound of the modified German "ü"; thus "beauty" is pronounced "büty."

"Fe" and "g" take "y" to prolong and emphasise them; thus "fever" becomes "feyver," and "meat" is pronounced "mayte."

"F" is frequently converted into "v"; "old father" is "ole vayther." But on the other hand "v" is often changed to "f," as "view" into "fü."

The vowel "a" is always pronounced long; "landed" is "länded," "plant" is "plänt." "H" is frequently changed into "y"; "heat" is spoken of as "yett," "Heathfield" becomes "Yaffel," and "hall" is "yall."

"I" is interjected to give greater force, and "e" is sounded as "a"; "flesh" is pronounced "flaish."