December 26th, 2007

archimedes
  • njyoder

British accents pronouncing 'th' sounds at the ends of words as 'f.'

I've noticed that there is a trend for some native British speakers to pronunce 'th' at the end of the word (and in the middle for compound words) as an 'f.' For example, 'birthday' becomes 'birfday' and 'teeth' becomes 'teef.'

Does anyone know why this trend exists? In British English, is this considered formally proper? Why doesn't it exist for General American speakers? In the U.S., I've primarily heard that pronounciation among those with AAVE accents (or whatever that accent would be called).