Regional standard

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A regional standard refers to the vocabulary, grammar, and pronunciation accepted as linguistic standards of a particular geographical area. It may therefore differ somewhat from what most people consider Standard English. Taking, by way of example, the United Kingdom, apart from British English, large numbers of people also use standard Scottish English or Irish English. Going further afield, we come across Australian and New Zealand English, Indian English, etc., each with their own standards, all of which are perfectly "correct". Confusingly, these regional standards can also be considered non-standard, if by that term we take the "majority" as a standard, a pretty risky proposition, given that RP, until recently considered the "ideal", is far from being the form of speech used by most native speakers of English. And each standard is likely to have at least one dialect subgroup.

American English[edit]

See main article American English.

Australian English[edit]

See main article Australian English.

British English[edit]

See main article British English.

Canadian English[edit]

See main article Canadian English.

Indian English[edit]

See main article Indian English.

Irish English[edit]

See main article Irish English.

Words like afeared (afraid) or blather (talk nonsense) may be understood by most native (British) English speakers, but other common words, such as garda (police) may not. Structures like Is it ready you are?[1] will probably be understandable by most folk, but be considered "quaint".

Scottish English[edit]

See main article Scottish English.

Words like aye, loch and wee are likely to be understood by most native (British) English speakers, but other standard words such as burn (stream) might not. Likewise, perfectly "correct" structures like Do you mind when...? (Do you remember when...?)[1] are probably not readily understandable by someone from outside that region.

New Zealand English[edit]

See main article New Zealand English.

South African English[edit]

See main article South African English.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Crystal, David The English Language Penguin ISBN 0-14-100396-0