Bahamian English is a group of varieties of English
spoken in the Bahamas
and by members of the Bahamian diaspora. The standard for official use and education is British
-based with regard to spelling, vocabulary, and pronunciation;
however, perceptions of the standard are more recently changing towards American norms. In particular, 21st-century news-industry and younger Bahamian speakers are often more influenced in their pronunciations by General American English
, or sometimes even African-American Vernacular English
The Bahamian accent is traditionally non-rhotic, but often now rhotic among younger speakers.
The realization of vowels in Bahamian English is as follows. The vowels below are named by the lexical set they belong to:
*The Kit vowel: The same as in American English, the default .
*The Dress vowel: The vowel is .
*The Trap vowel: This vowel is mostly or .
*The Lot vowel: As mostly of the US, this vowel is usually .
*The Strut vowel: It is the same as in the US English, .
*The Foot vowel: It is .
*The Fleece vowel: It is or a diphthong .
*The Face diphthong: It is generally or .
*The Palm vowel: It is mostly .
*The Thought vowel: The vowel is .
*The Goat diphthong: It is generally or .
*The Near diphthong: It is or .
*The Square diphthong: It is .
*The Start vowel: It is .
*The North diphthong: usually .
*The Force diphthong: usually .
*The Cure diphthong: usually .
*The Bath vowel: This vowel is mostly or .
*The Cloth vowel: It is mostly .
*The Nurse vowel: It varies among , and .
*The Goose vowel: It is mostly .
*The Price/Prize Dithphong: It's generally .
*The Choice diphthong: It is or .
*The Mouth diphthong: It varies among , and .
*The happY vowel: It is pretty much the ''kit'' vowel: .
*The lettEr-horsEs-commA vowel is (schwa).
There is poor distinction between the and sounds in Bahamian English.]
The contrast is often neutralized or merged into , or , so ''village'' sounds like , or . This also happens in the Vincentian, Bermudian and other Caribbean Englishes.
Dental fricatives are usually changed to alveolar plosives (''th''-stopping):
* Voiced ''th'' becomes /d/, e.g. "That" turns into "dat"; "Those" > "Dose"; "There" > "Dere"; "They" > "Dey".
* Unvoiced ''th'' becomes /t/, e.g. "Thanks" becomes "tanks"; "Throw" > "Trow"; "Three" > "Tree".
Category:Dialects of English