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Tongue twisters in your native language

[deactivated user]

    Yes, those pesky expressions.

    Can you post a tongue twister from your native language?

    I'll start:

    Três tristes tigres ("three sad tigers" in Portuguese). Seems so small a sentence yet so hard to pronounce it at regular speed.

    For the Germans out there... can it get more difficult than the famous tschechisches Streichholzschächtelchen?

    January 12, 2018



    In my native language (English);

    Peter Piper picks a pack of pickle peppers, and when Peter Piper picks a pack of pickle peppers, how many pack of pickle peppers did Peter Piper pick?

    Blue bugs bleed black blood

    How much wood could a wood chuck chuck if a wood chuck could chuck wood?

    May favorite tognue twister, though, is in Swedish: "Sju sjösjuka sjömän sköttes av sju sjuksköterskor på sjukhusskeppet i Shanghai" (Seven seasick sailors were treated by seven beautiful nurses on a hospital ship in Shanghai). The "sj" sounds are so hard to say that quickly!


    I know another version too: How much wood would a woodchuck cut if a woodchuck could cut wood :)

    [deactivated user]

      A wood chuck would chuck as much wood as a wood chuck could, if a wood chuck could chuck wood!


      She sells seashells by the seashore.


      She sells seashells by the seashore, and the seashells that she sells by the seashore are the seashells from that seashore.

      Similar Polish one: W czasie suszy szosa sucha, a tą suchą szosą szedł Sasza susząc sobie szorty. - During the drought the road is dry, and on that dry road Sasha was walking, drying his shorts.

      I broke my tongue completely on those two :D


      Si six scies scient six cyprès, six cent six scies scient six cent six cyprès.

      Wer nichts weiß und weiß, dass er nichts weiß, weiß mehr als der, der nichts weiß und nicht weiß, dass er nichts weiß.

      Edit: Who knows nothing and knows that he knows nothing, knows more than the one who knows nothing and does not know that he knows nothing.

      (so Jon Snow might know more than others ?!)


      My actor friends use this to warm up before shows:

      A big black bug bit a big black bear, made the big black bear bleed blood.


      Single word tongue twister: nakakapagpabagabag (disturbing, worrying, unsettling)

      A sentence tongue twister:
      Super Easy: Bababa ba? Bababa. (Will it go down? Yes it will go down.)
      Easy: Màkatì sa Makátí, may parî sa Aparrí, mahihílo sa Ìloìlo, may bagyo sa Baguio (It's itchy in Makáti, there's a priest in Aparrí, you'll be dizzy in Ìloìlo, there's a typhoon in Baguio)
      Average: Mayamayà'y mamamanhikan si Aman sa mayámang si Maya màlàmang sa hàrap ng maráming màmàmàyan. (Later will Aman court the wealthy Maya, of course in the front of multitudes.)
      Difficult: Minekaniko nang mekaniko ni Monico ang makina nang Minica ni Monica. (Monico's mechanic mechanically fixed Monica's Minica)


      Dutch: De knappe kapper knipt en kapt knap, maar de knecht van de knappe kapper knipt en kapt knapper dan de knappe kapper knipt en kapt.

      The handsome hairdresser cuts and styles well, but the handsome hairdresser's servant cuts and styles better than the handsome hairdresser cuts and styles.


      My favorite English tongue twister is: The sixth sick sheik's sixth sheep's sick.

      And here is my poor attempt to translate to German: Der sechste Kranke Scheichs sechste Schaf ist krank.


      Or: Des sechsten kranken Scheichs sechstes Schaf ist krank.

      Das sechste Schaft des kranken Scheichs ist krank.


      Two in Czech:

      • Nenaolejuje-li ji Julie, naolejuji ji já. (If Julie does not lube her/it up, I will lube her up.)
      • Šel pštros s pštrosicí a s pštrosáčaty. (There was once walking an ostrich with a lady ostrich and with baby ostriches.)


      I wonder how the phrase about ostriches would look if you added "pestrý" (colorful) as an adjective for all those ostriches... ;)


      A few more German ones:

      Zwischen zwei Zwetschgenzweigen zwitschern zwei Schwalben. ("Two swallows twitter between two plum branches.")

      Im dichten Fichtendickicht nicken dicke Fichten tüchtig. ("In the thick thicket of firs, thick firs nod diligently." There are some variations of this one. The objective is to avoid censorable words.)

      Der Whiskymixer mixt Whisky. ("The whisky mixer mixes whisky", surprisingly. Same objective as above.)

      In Ulm, um Ulm und um Ulm herum. ("In Ulm (a city), around Ulm and around Ulm")


      I really like the book "fox in socks" by doctor sues . the entire book is one big tongue twister.



      My liewe neef Louw my neus loop nou, loop my liewe neef Louw se neus ook nou?

      In English: My dear cousin Louw, my nose is running now, is my dear cousin Louw's nose also running now?


      French usual tongue twister : Les chaussettes de l’archiduchesse sont-elles sèches, archi-sèches ?
      Qu’un chasseur sachant chasser sur ses échasses sache chasser sans son chien de chasse !


      ok in English, I taught myself to say this in one breath and in around 10 to 15 seconds

      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 the batter better." So she bought a bit of butter, better than her bitter butter, and she put it in her batter, and the batter wasn't bitter. So twas better Betty Botter bought a bit of better butter.


      Lol, ok.

      English: Robbing Roger robbed my wobbly red wagon of its really weird rear wheels. (Taken from a Studio C episode.)

      One my dad and I made up: Justice Justin Justice just is the best Justice in Just county. (Justice as in Justice of the peace.)


      German: Acht alte Ameisen aßen am Abend Ananas.

      8 old ans ate pineapple in the evening.


      German: Fischers Fritz fischt frische Fische, frische Fische fischt Fischers Fritz. (Fritz (son of) Fischer is fishing fresh fish.)


      "tschechisches Streichholzschächtelchen" What does that mean?


      "little Czech matchbox"

      [deactivated user]

        I'm going with another small one but terribly hard to say... I've just tried it 5 times in a row and missed it everytime.

        In Portuguese:

        Casa suja, chão sujo... (dirty house, dirty floor)

        We have many others that are long alliteration sequences but I find the small ones quite peculiar because at first sight they sound quite inoffensive... and yet...



        Als de potvis in de pispot pist, zit de pispot vol met potvispis.

        Translation: If the sperm whale pees in the chamberpot, the chamberpot is filled with sperm whale piss.

        I could make it longer (although that is never really done): Als de potivis in de pispot pist, zit de pispot vol met potvispis van de potvispispotpissende potvis die pist in de met pispotpis gevulde potvispispot.

        Translation: If the sperm whale pees in the chamberpot, the chamberpot is filled with sperm whale piss from the sperm whale that pisses in the sperm whale chamberpot who pisses in the sperm whale chamberpot filled with sperm whale piss.

        Now I'm confused.


        Hiligaynon (A language spoken in the Philippines):

        Balay ni Bilay libat. (Bilay's house is cross eyed) This is actually like a trick or a prank cause if someone mispronounces the last word, it gets really dirty/inappropriate.


        That's why I hate those Filipinos who write without accent marks, it could be líbat or lìbat, but I haven't heard of both words.


        You probably hate me then since I can't write with accent marks. :P Although they really help when reading my Filipino textbooks (especially with Noli Me Tangere and El Fili!)


        (Hebrew) גנן גידל דגן בגן "a gardener grew grain in a garden" "ganan gidel dagan bagan"


        There's also: שרה שרה שיר שמח (Sara shara shir same'ach = Sarah sang a happy song)


        She slits a sheet, a sheet she slits. Upon the slitted sheet she sits.


        Here’s my favourite (Austrian) German one:

        Zehn zquetschte Zwetschkn und zehn zquetschte Zwetschkn sind zwanzg zquetschte Zwetschkn.

        (Ten squashed plums and ten squashed plums are twenty squashed plums.)

        It’s dialect, so the spelling is not quite what you’d consider “proper” German, but this is about how it should be pronounced. It’s almost impossible to say correctly at a decent speed. :-D


        Shanghainese: 嗲人帶嗲表,嗲人背嗲包。(dia nin da dia bio, dia nin bei dia bo) Roughly translated as "stylish people wear stylish watches, stylish people carry stylish handbags". THE classic tongue twister in Shanghai.

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