Meghan Markle divides the internet with new British accent

Elise Solé

She's well and truly in the midst of princess training, but a recent incident has some wondering whether Meghan Markle's transformation into a royal has left her with an instant British accent as well.

Meghan stepped out with fiancé Prince Harry at an event Scotland last week, when a fan named Carolyn Chisholm handed the American-born actress a batch of heart-shaped potato scones.

Carolyn's 70-year-old mother, Lynda Clark, was also in attendance and told reporters that when Suits star Meghan - who moved to Toronto in 2011 to film her hit show - handed the package to her assistant, she pronounced 'scone' with a short 'o', rhyming with 'gone' rather than the long 'o' sound in 'bone'.

Has Meghan picked up more from Harry than just a ring? Photo: Getty

Social media reacted.

However, Stefan Dollinger, associate professor of English at the University of British Columbia, tells Yahoo Lifestyle that the short 'o' is the Canadian pronunciation. So it’s possible that Meghan was vocalising the word out of habit, as she would at her local coffeeshop in Toronto.

And either version of the word could fly from the mouth of a Brit - a 2016 YouGov poll found that 51 percent of Brits pronounce the word to sound like 'gone' and 42 percent to sound like 'bone'.

Meghan's pronunciation of the word 'scone' saw the Twitter go into meltdown. Photo: Getty

What’s more, according to the Daily Mail, scone is pronounced with both a short or long 'o' in various parts of the United Kingdom, so Meghan's usage was a safe bet in both England, Canada, and Scotland.

The loved-up couple stepped out last week in Scotland for yet another public event. Photo: Getty

It’s possible that Markle will pick up a British dialect now that she’s moved to England ahead of her May wedding.

When Madonna moved to London with her British ex-husband Guy Ritchie, she picked up an English accent. And Lindsay Lohan, who has been spending lots of time abroad, made headlines with a curious new accent that one study dubbed the 'echo effect'.

“She is making herself as the person with whom she is speaking with,” study author Wojciech Kulesza told Vanity Fair.

“Why do we do it? Liking is not the only goal. Mimicry — imitating behavior — is described as unconscious tendency to create bonds with others, a social glue which bonds us to other people. It seems it is imprinted in our nature.”

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