bq. An American woman has been left with a British accent after having a stroke.
This is despite the fact that Tiffany Roberts, 61, has never been to Britain. Her accent is a mixture of English cockney and West Country.
Apparently the first case of this kind occurred in Norway in 1941, where a woman recovered from shrapnel injuries to the head with a German accent – not popular at the time.
bq. The kind of accent a patient develops is not dependent on any knowledge of a particular foreign language. It is rather the combination of certain changed features such as lengthening of syllables, altered pitch, or mispronouned sounds, which make a patient’s pronunciation sound similar to a particular foreign accent.
I know someone else blogged this, and said: how did they know the accent was British? It must have been someone British and facetious (is that possible?) I will acknowledge it later if it comes back to me.
LATER NOTE: of course, it was Ciaran on CompuServe, followed by Wil and Paul. Thanks!