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The School of British Accents — Learn The Scottish Accent
What Do We Mean By ‘Scottish English’?
Scottish English – isn’t that just Gaelic? No, actually! Before we look at the Scottish accent in more detail, let’s take a little trip through the linguistic history of Scotland. First, there was Gaelic, the ancient language of the Celts. In around 1500 there was a geographic shift, and Gaelic became mostly confined to the Highlands; whilst in the Lowlands, a different language began to develop distinct from Gaelic – Scots! (No, still not quite Scottish English…) In the Lowlands, Scots mixed with Standard English (both mutually influencing each other), and in the 18th century, Scottish English was born! Scottish English can best be summed up as being an accent that is the perfect combination of Gaelic roots, Scots phonology and an English lexicon. And, linguistically speaking, the fact that Scottish English only developed three centuries ago makes this accent one of the “newest” accents in the British Isles!
What To Look Out For With Scottish English?
Having come from the Celts, it’s not surprising that the Scottish accent shares some similarities with Welsh English; for example, the slight trill of the R which is apparent in both accents. Another throwback to Gaelic is in phonology, where the O sound in Standard English is often pronounced with an “ae” sound instead. And, looking at Gaelic, you’ll see that the vowel combination “ae” is very common. Take for example the word “cannot” in Standard English. In Scottish English, the T is swallowed, and the O sound changes to “ae”, becoming “cannae”.
Another distinctive feature is the glottal stop – the blocking of the airway to pronounce the letter T (though, in Scottish English the letter T seems to be swallowed by the glottal stop entirely). For example, “glottal” would become “glo’al”. Listen to the sentence from the video again: ‘I cannae do it.’ Not only does the T at the end of “cannot” get swallowed, but “it” also has that distinctive glottal stop after the vowel sound, so you don’t actually hear the letter T in the sentence at all! Master those three big phonological differences from Standard English, and you’ll be well on your way to speaking Scottish English.
Which Famous Scots Can I Imitate?
Attempting to mimic the Scottish English accent can be very difficult for non-Brits, so we recommend listening to famous Scots in order to learn exactly how to master the Scottish tones. Luckily for you, when it comes to famous Scots, there’s an embarrassment of riches of Scottish sports stars, film stars and other celebrities whom you can listen to! For a dash of classy Scottish, look no further than the actor Ewan McGregor. Or, if you’re looking to emulate a version of Scottish English that would help you blend into a city such as Glasgow, then watching celebrated Glaswegian comedian Billy Connolly should be your first port of call the next time you’re on Youtube.
Scottish Accent Training – AccentHelp
Audio files in Four Volumes (194.9 MB, 261 minutes)
Volume 1: Learning the Accent
- Introduction to Sound Placement, Intonation, and Helpful Hints for learning a Scottish accent (4:44)
- Consonant sound changes (13:55)
- Vowel sound changes (6:46)
- changes in Diphthongs (5:37)
- Pronunciations of words and terms (2:46)
- Practice Sentences Review (3:02)
- Text Practice (16:00)
- Text Intonation (3:43)
- Text Examples (2:36)
Volume 2: Recordings of Native Speakers
- Glasgow Female reading (1:08)
- + her conversation (3:46)
- Edinburgh Male reading (1:19)
- + his conversation (4:05)
- Scottish couple conversation (8:22)
- Sterling Female reading (1:07)
- + her conversation (4:32)
- Aberdeen Female reading (1:36)
- + her conversation (6:40)
- Glasgow Female reading (1:39)
- + her conversation (2:08)
- Speanbridge Male reading (1:08)
- + his conversation (2:04)
- Ythanback Male reading (1:13)
- + his conversation (3:14)
- Scotland Female reading (1:23)
- + her conversation (1:20)
- Glasgow Male reading (1:16)
- + his conversation (5:55)
- Glasgow Male reading (1:10)
- + his conversation (4:35)
- Glasgow Male reading (1:13)
- + his converation (3:16)
- Fife Female reading (1:17)
- + her conversation (4:40)
- Greenock Female reading (1:24)
- + her conversation (3:14)
- Scotland Male reading (1:14)
- + his conversation (4:08)
- Glenrothes Male reading (1:17)
- + his conversation (3:16)
Volume 3: Recordings of More Native Speakers
- Two Prestwick Females reading (1:56)
- + their conversation (7:34)
- + their conversation continued (7:28)
- + conversation with a Prestwick Male (7:40)
- Glasgow Male reading (1:26)
- + his conversation (7:10)
- Fraserburgh Female reading (1:13)
- + her conversation (2:51)
- Aberdeen Male reading (1:36)
- + his conversation (6:59)
- Aviemore Female reading (:56)
- + her conversation (2:05)
- Glasgow Male reading (1:23)
- + his conversation (4:44)
- Glasgow Female reading (1:20)
- + her conversation (5:09)
- Edinburgh Male reading (1:03)
- + his conversation (2:20)
- Edinburgh Female reading (1:20)
- + her conversation (3:45)
- Edinburgh Male reading (:52)
- + his conversation (:52)
- Edinburgh Female reading (1:52)
- + her conversation (7:23)
- Dundee Male reading (1:11)
- + his conversation (2:46)
- Glasgow Male reading (:53)
- + his conversation (3:37)
- East Kilbride Female reading (1:15)
- + her conversation (2:17)
Volume 4: Recordings of More Native Speakers
- Irvine Male reading (:55)
- + his conversation (1:22)
- Port Glagow Female reading (1:23)
- + her conversation (7:34)
- Jordanhill Male reading (1:18)
- + his conversation (3:33)
- Glasgow Male reading (1:03)
- + his conversation (1:54)
- Glasgow Female reading (1:09)
- + his conversation (4:40)
Most of these recordings are made «in the field» so you will hear such things as birds, cars or other people in the background. A transcription of the conversations is included to help you follow along.
Scottish Voice Over Agency | Scottish Accent VO Recording
English voice-over in a Scottish accent
Scottish accent voice-overs can add a crisp, trustworthy and honest touch to any voice over project. Whether you are looking for a neutral accent, or prefer to focus locally with an Aberdeen, Edinburgh or Glasgow accent, we have a wide selection of professional Scottish voice actors.
As well as keeping our costs lower than many other voice talent agencies, we also pride ourselves on our exceptional service quality. All of our Scottish accent voiceover actors are assessed on quality and experience before they can join our talent list, and out production team are very easy to work with.
Don’t just take our word for it, find out how from previous clients such as Tain Silver, Greener Scotland and WSPA have benefited from working with our team.
Feel free to contact one of our Account Managers with your enquiry. You can email [email protected] or call on +44(0)118 958 4934. Alternatively, you can request a project quotation by filling out the Quick Quote box opposite. We’ll be delighted to send you some FREE demos of the best male and female Scottish voice samples for your project.
Please visit our FAQ page, for more information on costs and answers to any questions you may have.
Featured Scottish Voice-Over Talent
Blanche was raised on the east coast of Scotland & now lives in London. Her scottish voice-over accent is warm, husky & engaging. She is experienced in commercials, drama & corporate voiceovers. Read more…
Diane is a Scottish VO artist with a confident, lively and highly approachable Scottish accent. She trained with Bauer Media some eight years ago. Her scottish accent works across a variety of age groups. Read more…
Steve has a scottish voice-over accent with a light highland lilt. He has worked worlwide, voicing everything from commercials and promos to educational training and award ceremonies. Read more…
Tom is a highly experienced & respected professional scottish voiceover artist with a distinctive Scottish accent. This a result of living & working on the West Coast, Borders & East Coast of Scotland. Read more…
Scottish voice-over selection in just three easy steps:
1. browse the Scottish voice-over demos below and click Play to audition each casting sample
2. choose the voice(s) you like and click ‘Add’ to your Quick Quote, or Download a copy
3. complete the Quick Quote and we’ll check availability and costs, with a response in just 1 hour
Video case study: Scottish Voice-over for SQA
IVR & on-hold messaging
‘Beyond the Exam’ explains how Scotland’s new National qualifications system works, giving candidates and their families a clearer insight into the journey an exam paper takes from its creation right through to results day.
In this video for SQA (Scottish Qualification Authority), Diane provided the Scottish accent voice over.
Video case study: Scottish voice-over for Greener Scotland
IVR & on-hold messaging
Greener Together is a Scottish government campaign, promoting greener living to aid and preserve the environment in a cleaner and more ecological way. They tackle issues such as wasted energy, wasted food and smarter travelling.
They created this animation to promote insulation in homes, in a bid to save on energy usage, and bills for heating and electricity. As the advertisement would be shown on Scottish television they opted for a Scottish voice over actor. It was thought the familiar accent would be picked up immediately by the audience, who would relate to it better than a non-accented voice.
Diane was the perfect choice VO talent for this campaign, and has a wealth of experience voicing projects in Scottish accent. The client was extremely satisfied with her professionalism.
Origins of the Scottish accent voice-over
Many people think that Scots is merely a dialect of English, but others believe that Scots is a language of its own and that the Scots we hear today is Scottish Standard English.
Scots came from the Angles, who came to Scotland in 600AD. By the 7th century Scotland’s people were speaking Northumbrian Old English, Celtic and the Pictish language. However Gaelic speakers began to settle in the west and the east of Scotland and within a few hundred years it had spread southwards to the lowlands and parts of Northumberland then became Scottish.
At the beginning of the 11th century, many Scottish people spoke Gaelic, apart from the settlers in the far north who were influenced by Viking invaders and spoke Old Norse. By the 14th century most people living in the eastern side of Scotland were speaking English.
The Scottish language by this time had influences from Norse, German, Latin and French due to alliances and trade. Scottish was spoken mainly in the highlands and in the lowland areas of Carrick and Galloway.
The Middle Scots period began in the 16th century when the language was differentiated from English by calling it Scots-Gaelic or Scottish English. Many Scottish speakers moved across the sea to settle in Ulster in Northern Ireland and the dialect there became known as Ulster-Scots.
Slowly Scottish people began to speak more in English, which led to the creation of Scottish-English, although they retained their distinctive accents.
58. Scotland / Scottish Accents (with Leslie)
Right-click here to download this episode.
An interview with a native speaker from Scotland. We talk about Scottish culture and stereotypes, and features of scottish accents.
Use this episode to develop your cultural understanding of the English language, and to practise identifying and understanding different accents.
Here is a full transcript for this entire episode. It was contributed by listeners to the podcast using the transcript collaboration project on teacherluke.co.uk. For those listeners who contributed part of this script – thank you very much indeed! Transcribing requires time and concentration. Your work will be very helpful to other listeners and learners of English.
Luke’s Introduction – Transcript
You are listening to Luke’s English podcast. For more information visit teacherluke.podomatic.com
Hello ladies and gentlemen. You are listening to Luke’s English podcast. My name is Luke. It’s my podcast. That’s why it’s called Luke’s English podcast. The English part of it is because it’s for people who are learning English as a foreign language. That’s right, there’s millions of you all over the world, you’re all desperately needing to improve your English, mainly if you live in countries where it’s very difficult to find native English speakers.
So, what you want is an authentic source of real English. You could listen to movies on DVD but you know there ….all those movies are scripted, it’s not really natural English. Let’s see, you could listen to the news, couldn’t you? on the radio, on the internet but to be honest most people don’t speak like that in real life. On the news they speak in a different way in a slightly unnatural way which is not really the same as the way most people in their everyday life use English. For example on the news for some reason on the news everything sounds like this. So that’s the way people speak on the news – obviously we don’t normally talk like that, do we?
But, so you want….. you are looking for of a great sort of really natural conversational English. Perhaps some British English because most of the English that you probably come in contact with through TV shows and movies and so on is American English and that’s great. I love American English. More people speak American English in the world than British English, but I know that a lot of my listeners really want to hear some British English because of various reasons. Some people prefer British English, some people consider it to be the original form English. I am not sure about that. Obviously the language changes all the time. The English that we speak in Britain is a bit different to the English they speak in America but that doesn’t mean one is better than the other.
Let’s see! So, those of my listeners, I am sure you are one of those people who need a good source of English to practice your listening. You also want to kind of learn more about the culture of the English language, maybe the culture of the UK, that kind of thing. You also would like to hear a variety of different accents so you can get a sense of all the different ways in which we speak English and also I am sure you want to pick up lots of really really useful bits of vocabulary – natural things.
So, you’ve come to the right place. This is where you are going to find all those things. It’s Luke’s English podcast. I do it on my own in my free time. I am an English language teacher who works in London. I’ve been teaching English for about 10 years now. I’ve got loads of experience of English teaching. I teach in a language school in Holland park in London and I teach general English, exam courses, business English, legal English and everything else in between. So you know that you can trust me as a decent source of English language teaching.
So I know if you are thinking this is amazing. Is this all free? Is this free or do I have to pay? Well, ladies and gentlemen, it is free. It is completely free but bear in mind I do have to pay for the web space. I have to pay the company that hosts this website. I have to pay them every month and so I do ask people to…..if they listen to the podcast I ask people to make a donation to me just to help me cover the cost of running the website. It would be ridiculous, wouldn’t it, if I did this and actually lost money every month. Well, the fact is that I do often kind of lose money. I spend money on this so that you can get free English lessons online.
If you are a business person you’re probably thinking that’s ridiculous. It defies every sense, every kind of business idea that you have, you know, obviously the idea is to make profit. But I’m not making any profit, that’s for sure so I can’t really call this a business instead it’s a kind of …it’s an experiment, really for me and it’s a kind of hobby and a chance for me to practice….do the things like presenting, maybe using my voice on radio. That kind of thing. It’s a bit of fun, a bit of fun for me, plus I know that there are people in parts of the world like in places like India or parts of Asia, for example, where they really have no access to facilities, no access to native English speakers who teach English and all of the materials that are out there are very expensive. So I like to think that somehow I’m helping the world. People who are in a difficult part of the world, the developing countries, who have an internet connection, they can listen to this and learn English for free, which is a very good thing as far as I am concerned.
So, I know you are thinking: enough of the chat, Luke. Get down to the point, will you please. What is this episode about? Well, this one is about Scotland and the Scottish accent. Now I’m doing a series of podcasts, I’m doing them very slowly because I’ve got various other things going on in my life but I’m doing a series of podcasts about different regional accents in the UK.
So in this episode we are going to be looking at Scotland and the Scottish accent. Now, I interviewed a teacher I know who works in the same school as me. She’s been teaching English for years and years in different countries. She comes from Scotland, originally and but she’s lived in Brazil and lived in England and lived in other countries in the world. She is kind of an international person but originally she comes from Scotland and I’d say she is a pretty good spokesperson for Scotland and, you know, things like the Scottish accent and Scottish culture. So I thought I’d interview her. Her name is Leslie. She is really nice, really lovely and she’s got a lovely voice, very pleasant Scottish accent. So asked Leslie a few questions about differences between English culture and Scottish culture and asked her questions about the Scottish accent and how does the Scottish accent sound and Leslie talked about features of the Scottish accent. Obviously I can’t really say the Scottish accent because that’s a generalisation. There are actually many different types of Scottish accents and Leslie will tell you all about that in the interview. Now, I am just going to post this on the site and I don’t have time to write a transcript for it now, but I am going to post it up and when I find the time I’ll put a transcript on there. Now, I expect some of you don’t really need the transcript and you are happy just to listen. You don’t need to read all the listening you just want to practice your listening skills. Others who are listening to this probably want to read the transcript so that they understand every single word. I understand that. But since this is a free thing, I can’t always do to the hard work and type transcripts.
But let me know if you feel like you can’t really use this episode without a transcript. That’s reasonable but let me know and then I can start writing a transcript for you. So, let’s see, here is the interview with Leslie and it’s a genuine interview with a native speaker from Scotland. Here we go:
INTERVIEW WITH LESLEY – TRANSCRIPT
Conversation between Luke and Leslie:
Luke: Whereabouts are you from?
Leslie: Well, I’m actually from Dundee, which is probably the third biggest city in Scotland.
Leslie: And it’s on the east coast, it’s just a bit further north than Edinburgh, about an hour really in the train
Luke: Right, okay. And…but you’re living in England at the moment
Leslie: Yes, yes
Luke: How long have you been here?
Leslie: I’ve been in London… well, this is actually my third time here, living here, but more recently this is probably year three of living here.
Luke: Right, okay. So, let’s see, I thought that I’d ask you then it’s considering you’ve been living here for a few years…I think it’s okay, still working
Luke: Yes, it’s still recording.. ‘cause you’ve been living here for a few years now, right? what’s… have you noticed any differences between life in England and life in Scotland?
Leslie: Well, in my case it’s a little complicated because I actually left Scotland when I was about … um, let me think, I finished university there and then I came to London for the first time and I was probably about twenty-one at the time. And I lived here for a couple of years, and then I went to Brazil
Leslie: And I stayed there for twenty years
Luke: I didn’t know that
Leslie: Yeah, that’s right
Luke: Really, whereabouts did you stay in Brazil?
Leslie: Eh, most of my time I spent in Brasilia, the capital, but the last couple of years we were in San Paulo before coming back to Britain
Luke: Do you speak Portuguese?
Leslie: Oh yes, I speak Portuguese at home
Luke: Do you really? At home?
Luke: So your husband is Portuguese?
Leslie: No, it’s even more complicated! I met my husband in Brazil but he’s from Iran
Luke: He’s from Iran? Okay, so you speak Portuguese to each other
Leslie: We speak Portuguese to each other, ‘cause when I met him, he didn’t speak English!
Luke: I see, I see
Leslie: So we both started the relationship both speaking horrific Portuguese
Luke: Right, but now you speak fluent Portuguese
Leslie: Now we both speak fluent Portuguese and our children of course were brought up there, so they’re bilingual really
Luke: Right, wow
Leslie: but Portuguese is the language at home
Luke: Wow, that’s amazing… So, do you speak Portuguese with the Scottish accent?
Leslie: I don’t think so but a Brazilian would probably say that we are definitely foreigners
Leslie: but I don’t speak as bad Portuguese as an English person might speak it
Luke: Yeah, okay… because…
Luke: That’s alright… because…
Leslie: I think basically because Scottish is a bit harder and it’s much better for Portuguese… the sounds are quite strong and so I think it makes it easier
Luke: Right, I see. Well, so, okay. So you’ve lived in Brazil for most of your time…
Leslie: A lot of my life was spent there… but coming back to Britain, I think… One thing that strikes me is that your Scottish accent never really leaves you, now I don’t know how deliberate that is. I do remember as a young person trying to hide my Scottish accent
Luke: Right. Why? Why would you do that?
Leslie: Exactly, this I can’t really work out, but I think I probably just wanted to fit in with everybody else
Leslie: So I trying to dilute it a bit, and also I was teaching, so I had to be sure that I wasn’t teaching all my Brazilian students “a wee boy” instead of “a little boy”
Luke: Okay. That’s interesting because it kind of raises the idea of what kind of English should we teach
Leslie: Exactly – should it be the standard BBC English or are we allowed to speak the English we know
Luke: Right. I suppose, I mean, it seems that most people, most of us teachers have decided that there’s a kind of standard BBC style, RP, kind of English that we should teach
Leslie: I think you’re right, Luke, I think so
Luke: But nevertheless I think when students, for example, come to England, when they listen to people speaking English, sometimes they’re kind of shocked by the fact that they don’t understand something. And they think “I met this man in the pub and I can understand everything you’re saying Luke, but this guy – I couldn’t understand anything he was saying. I think he was from Scotland”. So they always say is that “Oh, I think he must be from Scotland”
Leslie: The people that they don’t understand, must be Scottish
Luke: Exactly, yeah
Leslie: Well, I know, I know
Luke: So I guess from the point of view of our students we’ve got at least show them all the different other variations of English that they can have come across
Leslie: Exactly, and the more they’re exposed to these differences the better it is for them
Luke: Yeah, they might choose to
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Up & Coming Events Calendar for 2 month period. Please check link for more details re locations and times etc.,
Come over and join us at this fabulous Christmas Market,at Cypress Creek Christian Church located at 6823 Cypresswood Drive, Spring, TX . Friday 9 am to 5 pm or Saturday 9am till 4pm.
We are located INSIDE. For both days of the Christmas Fair there will be Carol singers the schedule is as follows: Friday, Nov 20 Strolling carolers/pianists — Market Venues Both Days
10 am — The Salvation Army Harbor Light Choir -Market Venues
Saturday, Nov 21 10 am — Strack ShowChoir — Gym
10 am — Northgate Crossing Elem Choir — Forum Sanctuary
11 am — Krahn Cardinal Elem Choir and Corps — Forum Sanctuary
12 pm — Kreinhop Elem Choir — Forum Sanctuary
1 pm- Schultz Elem Choir — Forum Sanctuary
2 pm- Metzler Elem Choir — Forum Sanctuary
Scottish Accents …… our story so far
Scottish Accents is independently owned and operated by Kirstine Duncan.
Kirstine was born and lived in Ayrshire, Scotland, currently she is resident in Houston,Texas,USA.
Scottish Accents was created from inspiration to bring wonderful authentic Scottish gifts from various different artists/manufacturers to all of us that appreciate such items no matter where we are presently residing.
Scottish Accents is often present at a number of the Houston area festivals, so please check the activities calendar to see if we will be in your local area.
If unable to make any of our festival dates, don’t worry you can also shop online, and also with us via Scottish Accents Facebook storefront where we have a larger selection of items on offer.
At present our website offers a small selection of some of our collections from each category. We are in the process of expanding the website, and therefore if you require an item that cannot be easily purchased via scottishaccents.com please feel free to either email us at [email protected], shop with us via our Scottish Accents Facebook Storefront or on our Square Storefront shop.
Scottish accent movies | Best and New films
Genre: Action, Drama, History, Thriller, War
Country: UK, Netherlands, France, USA
Duration: 106 min.
The story of the miraculous evacuation of Allied soldiers from Belgium, Britain, Canada and France, who were cut off and surrounded by the German army from the beaches and harbour of Dunkirk between May 26th and June 4th 1940 during World War II.
atmospheric, dramatic, realistic, based on true events, suspense …
war, world war two, survival, evacuation, british army, soldier, german, wartime, rescue, rescue mission, surrounded, german army …
1940s, year 1940, 20th century
france, europe, english channel, england, battleship …