"Will ye-oo py me f’them? [Here, with apologies, this desperate attempt to represent her dialect without a phonetic alphabet must be abandoned as unintelligible outside London.]
A Professor of Phonetics.
The reformer England needs today is an energetic phonetic enthusiast: that is why I have made such a one the hero of a popular play.
He and Tito Pagliardini, another phonetic veteran, were men whom it was impossible to dislike.
It must have been largely in his own despite that he was squeezed into something called a Readership of phonetics there.
And on the profits of it I do genuine scientific work in phonetics, and a little as a poet on Miltonic lines.
When it arrived, it contained nothing but a savagely derisive attack on a professor of language and literature whose chair Sweet regarded as proper to a phonetic expert only.
The future of phonetics rests probably with his pupils, who all swore by him; but nothing could bring the man himself into any sort of compliance with the university, to which he nevertheless clung by divine right in an intensely Oxonian way.
It was interesting enough at first, while we were at the phonetics; but after that I got deadly sick of it.
Well, this isn’t a phonetic job.
A phonetic job.
His great ability as a phonetician (he was, I think, the best of them all at his job) would have entitled him to high official recognition, and perhaps enabled him to popularize his subject, but for his Satanic contempt for all academic dignitaries and persons in general who thought more of Greek than of phonetics.
An honest and natural slum dialect is more tolerable than the attempt of a phonetically untaught person to imitate the vulgar dialect of the golf club; and I am sorry to say that in spite of the efforts of our Academy of Dramatic Art, there is still too much sham golfing English on our stage, and too little of the noble English of Forbes Robertson.
When Eliza referred again to her project of teaching phonetics, Higgins abated not a jot of his violent opposition to it.
I’ll teach phonetics.
The word passion means nothing else to them; and that Higgins could have a passion for phonetics and idealize his mother instead of Eliza, would seem to them absurd and unnatural.
But the Colonel, after making the ends meet over and over again, at last gently insisted; and Eliza, humbled to the dust by having to beg from him so often, and stung by the uproarious derision of Higgins, to whom the notion of Freddy succeeding at anything was a joke that never palled, grasped the fact that business, like phonetics, has to be learned.