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Hi. This is Gill at www.engvid.com, and today we're going to have a lesson about what to
do if someone says something to you and you can't hear them properly, or it's not very
clear what they say, and you need to ask them to repeat what it was they said. And this
could happen anywhere, anywhere in the world, but especially if you're in maybe a big city
where there are people of many different nationalities; cities like London, Toronto, New York, anywhere
really in the world. So people with different accents, either because they're from other
countries and English is not their first language, or even within one country, like within the
UK, we have many different accents from different parts of the country, from different cities,
from Scotland, Wales, Ireland. There are all different accents. And if someone has a strong
accent, it's more difficult to understand them. So this lesson is about asking people
to say again what they said. I have to do it even if someone says something in English,
which is my first language, I sometimes have to ask people to say something again. So it
happens to everybody.
Okay, so let's have a look at some of the words you can use to deal with this situation.
All right? So, a very useful single word is just to say: "Sorry?" with a sort of rising
in the voice. Question: "Sorry? Sorry?" And also, I've put body language at the bottom
here, but it's quite important. You can sort of go like this, and say: "Sorry?" and lean
towards them a little bit with your hand by your ear. So especially if they also are not
English... If their first language is not English, they will understand from this that
you didn't understand what they said. So a little bit of body language helps as well.
So: "Sorry?" is very useful and polite, because we need it to be polite as well. So, polite.
So: "Sorry?" is a polite way of asking someone to repeat.
At one time, there was also the word: "Pardon?" which is a little bit old fashioned now. So,
to say: "Pardon?" it's a little... It used to be very polite, and children were taught
to say: "Pardon?" but now it's a little bit old fashioned, and people might laugh at you
if you use: "Pardon?" So, see what other people say to you, and then you can follow what they
say, but "Pardon?" is a little bit old now.
Okay, now things not to say which are not polite. You don't just say: "What?" because
that is rather rude. So, don't say: "What? What?" Very rude, especially with a loud voice
and making a funny face. "What?" Not very nice at all, so don't say: "What?" And don't
say things like: "Eh? Eh?" A lot of English people might say: "Eh?" but that's not polite
either. So... Or: "Uh?" that's not polite either, just to say: "Uh? Uh?" No.
Okay, so the polite way, really, as one word is just to say: "Sorry?" and then the person
will probably understand you need them to say it again. But there are longer sentences
you can use as well, in addition to: "Sorry?" just to give you a wider range of options.
And the three main things about what... The way we all speak is clarity: what we say should
be clear. I hope I'm being clear in this lesson. So, that's the adjective "clear", and the
noun is "clarity". Clarity of speech. Okay? So it must be clear. The pace of the speed.
If people speak very quickly, it's difficult to follow what they're saying; to understand
what they're saying. So the pace should be fairly slow and regular. Okay. And the volume,
how loud or quiet somebody is. If someone speaks very quietly... You probably can't
hear me at the moment. So some people are a bit shy, and they don't speak very loud,
loudly. So the volume, how loud people are is important. So sometimes you need to ask
somebody to speak more loudly, so we have different sentences for these.
Okay, so the first thing you can say if someone says something and you missed a few words,
and you're not sure what they're saying, you... Again: "Sorry", is always a useful word to
begin with. Like we had "Sorry?" as the single word. "Sorry" is always useful to begin with.
"Sorry, I didn't quite catch what you said." Now, the "quite" is optional. You can say:
"I didn't catch what you said." or: "I didn't hear what you said.", "I didn't quite hear
what you said." The "quite" just adds a little bit more politeness. I didn't quite hear.
I nearly heard everything that you said, but not quite, and that suggests that there was
just one word that you didn't get. So: "Sorry, I didn't quite catch what you said." To catch
something is to... Like catching a ball or something. "I didn't catch what you said",
or: "I didn't hear what you said", and then the person will repeat, hopefully. All right.
Or, again, to ask them to repeat, you can say: "Sorry, could you say that again, please?"
or: "Sorry, could you repeat that, please?" Okay? To say again or to repeat. So: "Could
you say that again, please?", "Could you repeat that, please?" Okay? So: "Sorry" at the beginning,
"please" at the end is always a good idea to make it polite.
Now, if someone wasn't very loud and you want them to say it again with more volume, turning
up the volume, you can say: "Sorry, could you speak up, please?" To speak up means to
be louder. So, louder. Okay, so: "Sorry, could you speak up, please?" Again, it's a bit...
It's not very polite to say: "Sorry, you were too quiet, I didn't hear you. You were too
quiet." That sounds a bit like a criticism, so to avoid sounding as if you're criticizing
the person... "Oh, your voice is very quiet", it's not a very nice thing to say. So just
to say: "Sorry, could you speak up, please?" And maybe they'll think you can't hear very
well, and they think it's your fault and not theirs. You're being polite. Okay.
If the person uses a word that you don't know, you can just actually say: "Sorry, I don't
know that word", and you can ask them: "What does it mean?" What is the meaning of the
word? Or: "Could you tell me what it means, please?" Okay, so: "could", not "can", "Can
you tell me?" That's less polite. "Could you tell me"-is more polite-"what it means, please?"
Again, "please" at the end. And if you're having a conversation, then it helps to keep
the conversation going if you ask somebody: "Oh, I don't know that word. What does it
mean? Can...? Could you tell me what that word means?" And, you know, it helps you to
get to know the person a little bit better if you're asking them to explain something.
So don't be afraid of asking for the explanation of a word. Okay.
And then if someone speaks very quickly and all the words run together in one single sound,
and you want them to say it again... Again, don't say... It's not very polite to say:
"Sorry, you said that too quickly", because again, it sounds like a criticism. But if
you say: "Sorry, could you speak more slowly, please?" that's less... It sounds less like
a criticism. Okay? So: "Could you speak more slowly, please?" So: "Sorry", "please" at
the end, at the beginning and at the end. Okay? And then as I said before, body language
is always helpful.
So, I hope that's been useful to help you solve the problem of not understanding when
somebody speaks. And if you'd like to test your knowledge, please go to the website:
www.engvid.com where there is a quiz that you can answer.
And I hope to see you again soon. Okay? Thank you. Bye.
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【口說】如何有禮貌地請人重複他們的話? (Polite English: How to ask people to repeat themselves)

10286 分類 收藏
VoiceTube 發佈於 2015 年 10 月 9 日    Silvia W. 翻譯    Sally Hsu 審核
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