Master of the Sproken Word
August 9, 2005 9:01 AM   Subscribe

Deep Joy! "Professor" Stanley Unwin was the inventor of an off-the-cuff, comically mangled dialect known as Unwinese, which sounded almost but not quite like English. He appeared in a number of British comedy shows in the 1960s and 1970s. Here's his take on Elvis Presley[mp3], Doctor Who [mp3], and the Olympic Games. He died in 2002, aged 90.
posted by carter (10 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Reading this reminded me of Professor Irwin Corey, who surprisingly is still alive. Sound bites here.
posted by SteveInMaine at 9:16 AM on August 9, 2005

Reading this reminded me of Clockwork Orange. But faster, and weirder.

Is it possible that Burgess knew or knew of Unwinese and copied it for the book?
posted by oddman at 9:19 AM on August 9, 2005


Stanley Unwin is a superstar!
posted by asok at 9:33 AM on August 9, 2005

Unwin was hugely popular in the UK and Burgess would have
certainly have been aware of him.

Another writer whose works owe a very clear and acknowledged
debt to Unwin was Beatle John Lennon, whose books,
'A Spaniard in the Works' and 'In his own write' make
heavy use of a more twisted, perverted Unwinese.

Coming up after the break: Stanley Holloway, and his
rendition of Albert and the Lion.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 9:35 AM on August 9, 2005

Don't forget Lord Buckley, who indirectly inspired George Harrison's song "Crackerbox Palace"
posted by TedW at 10:00 AM on August 9, 2005

It seemed to be more than just mangling. There was a sort of linguistic jazz going on as far as I can make out. You wouldn't be surprised if you discovered he had some weird lesion deep in his brain that connected his speech processing centre to his music processing centre in some unconventional manner.

Splendid. All wasp waist and swivel hippy from across the herring bowl.
posted by RichLyon at 10:12 AM on August 9, 2005

Carter, thanks for posting this in the blue, too. (I saw your earlier link in the green, but I didn't want to pollute null's thread.) And now, you've got even more great links. Cool.
posted by safetyfork at 1:49 PM on August 9, 2005

Deep Roy!
posted by msacheson at 2:21 PM on August 9, 2005

I used to love listening to this use of language. Since my mother-in-laws stroke....
Amazing, the things that lose their charm when they become compulsory.
posted by pointilist at 2:39 PM on August 9, 2005

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