Tongue Twisters from other languages.

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Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#1  Postby Animavore » Mar 15, 2011 9:42 pm

There's a Polish tongue twister I know. It means, more or less, table with broken legs, Stół z powyłamywanymi nogami.

I often say this to Polish people and they are often impressed with my pronunciation. Polish people find it hard to say but I can say it no problem. To me it doesn't feel anything like a tongue twister.

What's going on here? Am I able to say this because I am not a Polish speaker? Is there something about speaking a language which decides how we speak and what type of phrases are difficult for us to say?
Do any of our members who's first language is not English find our tongue twisters easy to say in a way we don't?
Last edited by Animavore on Mar 15, 2011 10:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Tongue Twistors from other languages.

#2  Postby twistor59 » Mar 15, 2011 10:00 pm

About the spelling of the thread title......

You'll have to buy me a drink first. :lol: :lol:
A soul in tension that's learning to fly
Condition grounded but determined to try
Can't keep my eyes from the circling skies
Tongue-tied and twisted just an earthbound misfit, I
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Re: Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#3  Postby Animavore » Mar 15, 2011 10:04 pm

Spell-check; why have you forsaken me :rage:
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Re: Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#4  Postby Amergin » Mar 17, 2011 5:45 pm

Some local people of Bristol cannot say words like 'prima donna' without inserting an 'l sound' thus 'Prima'l donna'l'. They do not even know they are doing it and will deny it if it is pointed out to them. They seem to not hear themselves.
My father a native cockney from Bow came to live in Yorkshire and could not say " Riddlesden" but said instead " Rillsden" and denied he was missing out the 'dd' sound.
By the way, it has been pointed out that reverting to phonetic spelling would not work as none of us says " London Bridge " without putting a 'b' sound between the 'd' and the 'b' sounds . Try it and listen to yourself.
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Re: Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#5  Postby Animavore » Mar 17, 2011 5:52 pm

I don't know if that works for Irish. I think we would say, "Lond'n Bri'ge.
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Re: Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#6  Postby tuco » Mar 17, 2011 5:59 pm

Tři sta tři a třicet křepeliček přeletělo přes tři sta tři a třicet stříbrných řek.

or

Přišel za mnou jeden Řek, a ten mi řek, abych mu řek, kolik je v Řecku řeckých řek. A já mu řek, že nejsem Řek, abych mu řek, kolik je v Řecku řeckých řek.

Good luck as nobody has ř :)

Animavore wrote:Is there something about speaking a language which decides how we speak and what type of phrases are difficult for us to say?


I'd say yes, but it depends.
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Re: Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#7  Postby Berthold » Mar 21, 2011 6:15 pm

There's a shorter one, too, meaning, "stick your finger into your throat", as far as I know.
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Re: Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#8  Postby natselrox » Mar 21, 2011 6:20 pm

Couple of the popular tongue-twisters in Bengali:

"Jole chun taja, tele chul taja."

"Pakhi paka pepe khay."

I can do them with ease but the one that always gets me is in English, "Good blood, bad blood."
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Re: Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#9  Postby Animavore » Mar 21, 2011 6:24 pm

I always find tongue twisters like that easier to do if I rap them.

What are those two tongue twisters phonetically, Nats?
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Re: Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#10  Postby natselrox » Mar 21, 2011 6:30 pm

Umm... Lemme try:

"Jole chun taja, tele chul taja" : Jaw-lay choon ('ch' as in 'chocolate, and the whole thing as in 'swoon') taa-jaa (with a soft 't', like the Japanese), tay-lay (soft 't') chool ('ch' as before and the whole thing as 'wool') taa-jaa.

"Pakhi paka pepe khay" : Pa-khee pa-ka pay-pay khaey

:P
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Re: Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#11  Postby Animavore » Mar 21, 2011 6:34 pm

Wow. That's also really easy for me to say. Although I find myself chanting it like an African tribal song.
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Re: Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#12  Postby natselrox » Mar 21, 2011 6:45 pm

It's a fascinating point that you have raised! Are our tongues trained to function optimally when we speak our mother tongue? Do local rules govern the word/sentence formation in a language and are they challenged in tongue twisters which is why people who are not exposed to those rules find it easier to say the TTs? Going back a step, do TTs fool us in the tongue, or in the brain?

Deep questions.
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Re: Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#13  Postby Animavore » Mar 21, 2011 6:50 pm

I did find it an interesting question. I was surprised at a lack of response. I just put it down to people seeing my name and thinking I was joking. I had thought there might already be some information on this?
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Re: Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#14  Postby natselrox » Mar 21, 2011 6:56 pm

Ah! One paper, neuroimaging. :roll:

Suggests a neural cause.

Abstract wrote:This study used fMRI to investigate the neural basis of the tongue-twister effect in a sentence comprehension task. Participants silently read sentences equated for the syntactic structure and the lexical frequency of the constituent words, but differing in the proportion of words that shared similar initial phonemes. The manipulation affected not only the reading times and comprehension performance, but also the amount of activation seen in a number of language-related cortical areas. The effect was not restricted to cortical areas known to be involved in articulatory speech programming or rehearsal processes (the inferior frontal gyrus and anterior insula), but also extended to areas associated with other aspects of language processing (inferior parietal cortex) associated with phonological processing and storage.


pdf: http://www.neurosci.umn.edu/courses/415 ... _paper.pdf

We'll have to mail someone more knowledgable the questions you asked! But I'm too tired and drunk to do that. Maybe tomorrow! But this is important!

:cheers:
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Re: Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#15  Postby HomerJay » Mar 21, 2011 7:09 pm

暖かくなったから、暖かい服を使った
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Re: Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#16  Postby The_Metatron » Mar 21, 2011 8:05 pm

I have found that no Korean I ever met can say "lizard pizza". It comes out "rigid peacha".
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Re: Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#17  Postby Jbags » Mar 23, 2011 6:28 am

I can give you a little from Mandarin:

四十四,十是十,十四是十四,四十是四十
(Sì shí sì, shí shì shí, shí sì shì shí sì, sì shí shì sì shí)

Four is four, ten is ten, fourteen is fourteen, forty is forty.

The trick here is twofold, firstly there's the conflict between the s and sh sounds. The s sound in chinese is very sharp and at the front of the mouth, whereas the sh is very far back in the mouth, much more exaggerated than your typical sh sound in English. Secondly, you have the different tones - the tone marks above the "i"s tell you whether you should say each while rising or falling in tone.

edit: I found this dictionary which includes sound files of pronounciations:

, shì, shí

Here's a longer one:

黑化黑灰化肥灰会挥发发灰黑讳为黑灰花会回飞;灰化灰黑化肥会会挥发发黑灰为讳飞花回化为灰
(Hēi huà hēi huī huàféi huī huì huī fǎ fǎ huī hēi huì wèi hēi huī huā huì huí fēi; huī huà huī hēi huàféi huì huì huī fǎ fǎ hēi huī wèi huì fēihuā huí huà wéi huī)

The meaning here is quite nonsensical, and again the trick comes in with juggling the tones.

Removed my crappy pronounciation guide in favour of pronounciation links. (Hēi is simply "hey" in English, there's no sound file)

huā, huà, huī, huì
féi, fēi, ,
wéi, wèi

(here's a guide to tones in Mandarin)

Completely tongue twisted when it comes to the ones in Bengali! But I'm an ok mimic so I might be able to give it a go if I heard it being said.
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Re: Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#18  Postby Galactor » Mar 23, 2011 6:49 am

Here's one from Holland:

De meid snijdt recht en de knecht snijdt schuin.

Translated: the girl slices straight and the knave (boy, jack) slices slanted.

It is of course about slicing bread - the maid can do it well, but the jack can't.

The amusing part of the tongue twister is that if you say it fast, you can end up saying "de knecht schijt schuin" which means that the jack shits slanted.
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Re: Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#19  Postby ughaibu » Mar 23, 2011 6:50 am

HomerJay wrote:暖かくなったから、暖かい服を使った
Read: attakakunattakara, attakai fukuo tsukatta. Did you make it up yourself? Attakakunakunatta would make more sense.
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Re: Tongue Twisters from other languages.

#20  Postby Corneel » Mar 23, 2011 10:21 am

Another one in Dutch: De postkoetskoetsier poetst de postkoets met postkoetspoets op een postkoetspoetsdoek. (main problem is ts/st)

And two in French on ch/s (ch pronounced as sh in English):
Un chasseur sachant chasser sait chasser sans son chien de chasse
Les chaussettes de l'archiduchesse sont-elles sèches? Archi-sèches!
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