Can you say these tricky tongue twisters ten times over, without getting tongue-tied?
1. Pad kid poured curd pulled cold.
Scientists came up with this one. And they say it’s the hardest of all tongue twisters. It defeated volunteers taking part in a US speech study. Try saying it ten times, it might defeat you, too!
2. She sells sea-shells on the sea-shore. The shells she sells are sea-shells I’m sure.
Here’s a bit of history. This one’s about a real person. Mary Anning. She was born in 1799, and when she was a little girl she found fossils on the beach while out walking her dog. And she sold them to museums. These fossils looked like shells, but were in fact among the first dinosaur remains found in this country.
3. Many an anemone sees an enemy anemone.
Here’s a bit of science. Anemones look like flowers and attach themselves to rocks on the seabed. When their prey gets closer, they fire a dart-like, poison-filled harpoon at it and draw it in with their tentacles. Which is why they have so many enemies, presumably.
4. Fred fed Ted bread, Ted fed Fred bread.
All that bread meant neither Fred nor Ted were hungry. But it’s the regular rhythm of this sentence that apparently makes it so hard to say at speed.
5. Irish wristwatch
It’s the Rs and Ws that make this one so tricky. And the S sounds. Probably impossible to say after an Irish whiskey.
6. 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?
It’s said this rhyme was inspired by the French adventurer Pierre Poivre (in French, poivre means pepper). He traveled the world, fought in battles, engaged in smuggling and wrote books about the things he’d seen. In the 1760s, he settled in Mauritius where he planted a botanical garden and, presumably, picked pecks of pickled poivres. A peck, by the way, is an old-fashioned unit of measurement.
Did you manage to say any of these tongue twisters? Let us know in the comments below…