I have often heard the pronunciation stereotype for Canadians which states we pronounce the word “about” as “aboot.” But I always wondered where that came from since I certainly had never heard that. And recently, I came across the following article which backs me up on this.
I imagine the perception actually comes from our Scottish immigration. Scots do often use the “aboot” pronunciation. Here’s a little child’s poem pronounced as follows:
Roon aboot, roon aboot, roon a wee moose, up a bit, up a bit, to his wee hoose. (Run about, run about, run a week mouse, up abit, up a bit, to his wee house.)
Canadian Raising: Nobody says “Aboot”
A point of clarification: Canadians do not say aboot.
Canadian English features something called Canadian Raising, which basically means that the diphthong in “now” is raised before t, s or other voiceless consonants (i.e. before words like about and house).
What does this mean? In most Canadian accents, about sounds a bit like American a-boat (IPA əbʌʊt).