--- In phoNet@egroups.com, "Jeffrey S. Jones" <jeffsjones@e...>

> I also assimilate the nasal before a dental, but not before r.

There is some individual variation as regards the point of
articulation used for /r/. If your /r/ is an alveolar (rather than
postalveolar) frictionless continuant, there's no need to retract
any /n/'s. On the other hand, in some people's speech the whole
coronal sequence in _Andrew_ or _entry_ is clearly postalveolar.

> Interesting. I can't recall ever hearing s or z assimilate before
> or dZ, except possibly late at night in a bar or at a party. Is this
> a
> British thing?

I'm pretty sure it is. A native speaker of British English whose
opinion I asked this morning (a university teacher from the West
Midlands) assured me this type of assimilation was quite natural to
him in fast speech. A.C. Gimson gives very similar examples (_this
church_, etc.) in his handbook of English pronunciation without
qualifying them as sloppy or substandard. Finally, in J.C. Wells's
pronouncing dictionary words like _question_, _digestion_ or
_Christian_ have variants with /s/ > [S].

If the examples sound a bit over the top to you, this is probably
because different accents of English show different degrees of
tolerance with respect to palatal (and other) assimilations. E.g.
_Tuesday_ is "Choosday" in Ireland and Australia, but not in RP-like
accents. I've heard Australians pronounce _century_ and _sentry_ as
homophones -- disyllabic and with a homorganic /ntr/ cluster
("sintry", more or less). And that was in broad daylight, not in a
pub at "last orders" time.