From The Hot Word:

Douglas G. Wilson douglas at NB.NET
Wed Aug 15 02:09:39 UTC 2012

On 8/14/2012 9:25 PM, Wilson Gray wrote:
> '... “you’re” and “your” sound identical ...'
> Is this true of any speaker here? I use "yure" and "yore," resp.
> Though a lot of other speakers also use this pattern or its r-less
> variants, there are also those who, annoyingly :-), use "yore" and
> "yure," resp. But, I haven't noticed that the two fall together for
> any speakers. Surely, there *are* speakers of whom THW's claim is
> true, else he wouldn't have made it. But, his careless assumption that
> he's describing the standard, hence, no need to point out the
> direction of the assimilation, bites the big one.
> A commentater, "Dicky," writes,
> "BTW ..., “you’re” and “your” are not supposed to be pronounced the
> same (except maybe in the southern U.S.A.). “You’re” should be
> pronounced ‘yu•err’ and “your” pronounced ‘yorr.’ The word “they’re”
> is pronounced ‘thay•err’ and “there” pronounced ‘thær.’ If we would
> pronounce the words properly, maybe more people would get the spelling
> correct."

I guess I'd tend to pronounce these like Wilson Gray, "you're" /jUr/,
"your" /jOr/ or so when they're stressed. But unstressed I guess I'd
usually pronounce them the same, /j at r/.

-- Doug Wilson

The American Dialect Society -

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