The words below are pronounced by former Australian Prime Minister, Julia Gillard.

  • First, can you arrange the first sounds of each diphthong - æ, a, a, ɑ - from the front past of mouth to inner parts? (e.g. [i] > [ii]=[iii] > [iv])

  • Australian [or her pronunciation] / ɑ/ in hard is pronounced at more front than RP?

  • Australian [or her pronunciation] / aɪ/ in deny is pronounced at more back than RP?

[i] /æɪ/ participating, representation, way, campaign

[ii] /aɪ/ deny, I, pricing, ironing

[iii] /aʊ/ now, about, out, house

[iv] /ɑː/ hard, March, behalf, carbon

reference charts: Australian IPA chart; International IPA.

  • 1
    More reference charts: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IPA_chart_for_English_dialects
    – Jim
    Commented Dec 4, 2013 at 5:18
  • I think there are too many differences to list in an answer here.
    – Jim
    Commented Dec 4, 2013 at 5:18
  • TO me ears, I agree with your observation on that /aɪ/ (as in deny). but I think /ɑ/ (as in hard) is about the same to English accents in general. In formal speeches, I usually found Australian and English accents are quite close. (Though I usually can, sometimes I couldn't tell one from another unless I paid some attention to their accents.) Commented Dec 4, 2013 at 5:34

1 Answer 1


[Native Australian] Julia Gillard hails from Adelaide, and they have a distinct accent, even by Australian standards (there aren't many tonal differences between the Australian regions in general). The tonal difference in speakers from Adelaide, and more generally South Australia, is characterised by nasal a's. If you let more air through your nose by forcing the "a" where it is not combined with another letter (the middle "a" in Austr*a*lia, for example) you'll see what I mean.

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