Date: Tue, 21 Mar 1995 17:33:31 -0500


Subject: queries

In a reference I can no longer identify, I recall coming across

an assertion that the accent with which East Indians speak

english arose as a result of the teachers of english in India

during the major period of British colonialism there were from

Wales. As a result, Indians were originally taught english with

a Welsh accent, a happenstance of linguistic accidnet perpetuated

through succeeding generations. Is ther any truth to this? Does

anyone out there know the origins of this?

Further -- are there any studies on characteristics of national

accents in foreign tongues (eg. is there a relationship between

the characteristic accent with which Italians speak english and,

say, the way in which they might speak Russian; or the English

person's accent in speaking Spanish or in speaking French, for


FINALLY -- a medico-linguistic query. In older medical text-

books which listening to the chest with a stethoscope, the

physician is instructed to tell the patient to enunciate

"ninety-nine." This actually makes very little sense. The

origin apparently is from an early translation from the German in

which the German term-equivalent used in the original text for

what was translated as "ninety-nine" does involve strong

expirations and so is a useful tool in examination. Again --

does anyone out there have any info on this?

To complicate things further -- I am a biologist and not a

linguist and am NOT on this list! So I would greatly apprciate

it you could communicate with me directly:


Very many thanks for reading this far and for any help you might

be able to offer -- Mike Shodell