Prince Harry has been living in the United States for the past two years, but he has been away from the royal family for a bit longer than that.
Before quitting The Firm, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex stayed in Canada for a couple of weeks. But it is important that for the most part of his life, he lived in Britain and therefore has a British accent.
Prince Harry’s Accent No Longer Sounds Upper Class
Prince Harry appeared in a new video this week for BetterUp, and speech and accent expert Emma Serlin immediately noticed changes in the way that Meghan Markle’s husband talks. While speaking with Mirror UK, she said that Prince Harry’s accent used to be aligned with the accent of the royal family, but this is no longer the case.
“Harry’s accent now sounds much more rounded and middle rather than the upper class. In a classic Harry way, he’s doing what we know him to be - he’s the friendly prince, he’s charming, and he connects with people. He is his mother’s son. He is now of the people in a much more overt way. He has always toned the classic royal accent down and softened it, but previously he was much more aligned with the Royal Family,” she said (via Express).
Prince Harry’s Accent Not Aligned With The Royal Family Because He Barely Sees Them
Serlin explained that the changes in Prince Harry’s accent might have to do with the fact that he no longer sees the royal family as often as he used to.
“Now that Harry hardly ever sees the Royal Family - not only is he no longer aligned with them in the same way, but he also doesn’t spend time with them in the same way. So, he has adapted his accent to connect more with the people he is meeting and seeing every day, and the people around him. Ultimately, I’m sure he would heighten his accent if he was around the Royal Family again, but it's really about adapting to build connections,” the expert said.
Meghan Markle Adapted A British Accent While Working As A Senior Royal
Years ago, Prince Harry’s wife was also accused of adopting a British accent shortly after she relocated to the United Kingdom. At the time, phonetics and pronunciation specialist Dr. Geoff Lindsey explained the changes to the way that Markle spoke.
“There does seem to be something in the idea that Meghan Markle's speech has changed a bit, at least in some settings. There are occasional vowels which sound a bit more British,” he said (via The BBC).
Marisa Brook, an assistant professor in linguistics at the University of Toronto, believes that Markle developed a speaking style that sounds very English-aristocratic when she’s interacting with people.
“I think a lot of it is deliberate on her part. She’s developed a style to be used when directly talking with the British public. These are the situations where people might be judging her in public instantly, where it really benefits her to sound British and aristocratic. If it's conscious, I don't think it makes her manipulative, or a poser or anything. She’s someone who's very off-beat from those who usually join the Royal Family - it makes a lot of sense. It's not that she is changing who she is. It's like she's changing how she dresses - it's like an extremely fancy outfit. I would call it a reasonable resource for her to draw on, given how unlikely her change in circumstances – and how dramatic,” she explained.
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