The Philly accent is fading

This just in from researchers at Penn: The Philadelphia accent is changing.

According to Penn linguists:

The traditional Southern inflections associated with Philadelphia native-born speakers are increasingly being displaced by Northern influences.

Apparently, hoagiemouth owes a lot to Southern dialects. (Who knew?) The researchers crunched nearly a million measurements and found that almost two-thirds of Philadelphia vowels sounds are undergoing “northernization.”

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Doctoral candidate Josef Fruehwald says you can really hear it in words like “cow,” “now,” “sound” and “house.” (See 0:50 in the video below for a demonstration.)

But fear not. One of Philly’s most distinctive pronunciations seems to be A-OK.

“Philadelphians say ‘wooder,’ and that’s that,” Fruehwald told NBC 10.

You can read an abstract of the new study over at Project MUSE.

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