The aim: to examine the development of Cockney dialect through ages and its influence on the English that can really be heard in England nowadays.Objectives: to examine the quintessence of the Cockney dialect; to analyze typical features of the Cockney dialect; to research the popularity of the Cockney dialect in modern society.
According to traditional definition, a "true" cockney is someone born within earshot of the Bow Bells, i.e. the bells of St Mary-le-Bow church in Cheapside in the City of London. Cockney cock and egg (Middle English cokeney < coken + ey, lit. cocks egg), meaning first a misshapen egg (1362), then a person ignorant of country ways (1521), then the senses mentioned above.
The region in which"Cockneys" reside has changedover time. Nowadays not onlyEast Enders speak cockney butalso the traditional coreneighbourhoods of the EastEnd: Bethnal Green,Whitechapel, Spitalfields,Stepney, Wapping, Limehouse,Poplar, Millwall, Hackney,Shoreditch, Bow, and Mile End.
1. Me instead of my2. Ain’t instead of isn‟t, am not, aren‟t3. Double negatives: I didn‟t see nothing.4. “That” indicates a strong degree (He is that pig-headed.) “Pretty” – a weaker one. (He is pretty pig-headed.)
Sam Weller from Charles Dickenss novel The Pickwick Papers Bert in the movie Mary Poppins Eliza Doolittle in George Bernard Shaws Pygmalion EastEnders soap opera Stan Shunpike in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban Mordor Orcs in Peter Jacksons film trilogy The Lord of the Rings The Artful Dodger from the Charles Dickens novel Oliver Twist
Traditional Cockneyrhyming slang works bytaking two words that arerelated through a short phraseand using the first word tostand for a word that rhymeswith the second. For instance,"bread" means “money” as“bread and honey” rhymeswith “money”.
1. The film Limey (1999) features Terrence Stamp as Wilson, a Cockney man recently released from prison who spices his conversations with rhyming slang.2. The British comedy Mind Your Language (1977) features a character who uses Cockney Rhyming Slang extensively.3. Rock band Deep Purple used Cockney rhyming slang in the title for the song “ A piss” etc.
1. The traditional cockney is not so much dying out but new kinds of mixed accents are developing. (Prof. David Crystal, BBC Voices consultant)2. The cockney dialect is not disappearing altogether, but shifting to outlying towns and boroughs. (Laura Wright, senior lecturer in English Language at the University of Cambridge)3. A new type of speech, influenced by a number of foreign languages and pronunciations such as Bengali, Bangladeshi, rap music and popular TV programmes have altered traditional cockney.
The cockney dialect is an English dialect spoken in the East End of London, although the area in which it is spoken has changed considerably. The term cockney comes from a Middle English word cokenei which means “city dweller”. The primary characteristics of cockney dialect include h- dropping, the use of double negatives, contractions and vowel shifts. One of the more unique aspects of cockney speech is cockney rhyming slang, where a word is replaced with a phrase, usually containing a word which rhymes with the original word. Some linguists have become concerned that the cockney dialect may fall out of spoken English, due to the influence of multicultural immigrants in London who have added their own regional slang to the dialect.