Language is an amazing thing, it can be used to comfort, to warn, to reassure, to frighten, to make us cry, and make us laugh. The English language is particularly complicated and there have been plenty of rhymes that demonstrate the contradictory nature of British English and how it is easy to confuse even the most knowledgeable of native speakers with just a few well chosen words.
One of my favourite uses of the English Language is the Tongue Twister, it’s such a giggle to watch and listen as people try and master these almost impossible snippets and invariably cocking them up with hilarious consequences. Here we have collected together some well known and some not so well known tongue twisters for you to try out in the privacy of your on home.
Or you could email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us see your attempts. If we get enough we might even put them all together and share them on here.
A tongue twister is described as being a phrase that is designed to be difficult to articulate properly, and can be used as a type of spoken (or sung) word game. Many are simply humorous attempts to confuse and confound the speaker but a few result in the speaker making humorously vulgar mistakes so be prepared to say an occasional unintentional rude word.
Each Tongue twister should be spoken aloud as fast as possible and repeated three times in quick succession.
How much wood would a woodchuck chuck
If a woodchuck could chuck wood?
He would chuck, he would, as much as he could,
And chuck as much as a woodchuck would
If a woodchuck could chuck wood.
Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers.
A peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked.
If Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers,
Where’s the peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked?
I saw Susie sitting in a shoe shine shop.
Where she sits she shines, and where she shines she sits.
Imagine an imaginary menagerie manager
imagining managing an imaginary menagerie.
Red lorry, yellow lorry.
Six sick hicks nick six slick bricks with picks and sticks.
Tom threw Tim three thumbtacks
Santa’s Short Suit Shrunk
Luke Luck likes lakes.
Luke’s duck likes lakes.
Luke Luck licks lakes.
Luck’s duck licks lakes.
Duck takes licks in lakes Luke Luck likes.
Luke Luck takes licks in lakes duck likes.
Betty Botter bought some butter
But she said the butter’s bitter
If I put it in my batter, it will make my batter bitter
But a bit of better butter will make my batter better
So ‘twas better Betty Botter bought a bit of better butter
She sells seashells by the seashore.
The shells she sells are surely seashells.
So if she sells shells on the seashore,
I’m sure she sells seashore shells.
I am not the pheasant plucker,
I’m the pheasant plucker’s mate.
I am only plucking pheasants
Because the pheasant plucker’s late.
One smart fellow; he felt smart.
Two smart fellows; they felt smart.
Three smart fellows; they all felt smart.
Mrs Puggy Wuggy has a square cut punt.
Not a punt cut square,
Just a square cut punt.
It’s round in the stern and blunt in the front.
Mrs Puggy Wuggy has a square cut punt.
I have had such fun looking through the thousands of tongue twisters that there are out there when selecting these few and may have giggled to myself at the thought of you letting a rude word slip out when attempting some of the naughtier examples.
I now have tongue ache- if there is such a thing.
Words can be a wonder.
Sometimes, however, our words can make ridiculous jokes, we can interpret things the wrong way, and laugh at images conjured where they were not intended.
This is one of those times. Welcome to the world of unintentional innuendo…
She recently caught our attention on BBC Radio 4’s Word of Mouth with Michael Rosen with their discussion on how US and UK words are being shared, loved, and hated on either side of the pond.
Many people in the UK use the word ‘awesome’, for example, and possibly the same amount cannot stand the hyperbolic use of the word. In the USA the phrase ‘baby bump’ is causing many grimaces as well as many giggles, while UK swear/curse words such as ‘wanker’ are breaking through thanks to social media, film and television.
‘English as She Is Spoke’, or ‘O novo guia da conversação em portuguez e inglez’, was supposed to help those with Portuguese as a mother tongue to converse with English speakers. The only problem was that the writer spoke little English himself, and the end result of his clumsy translations was just a little strange… Read More
We hope to make you giggle, groan, and guffaw!