Hints on English Pronunciation for ForeignersI take it you already know
of tough and bough and cough and dough?
Others may stumble but not you,
on hiccough, thorough, lough and through.
Well done! And now you wish, perhaps,
to learn of less familiar traps?
Beware of heard, a dreadful word
that looks like beard and sounds like bird.
And dead: it’s said like bed, not bead
For goodness’ sake don’t call it ‘deed’!
Watch out for meat and great and threat
(They rhyme with suite and straight and debt.)
A moth is not a moth in mother
Nor both in bother, broth in brother,
And here is not a match for there,
Nor dear and fear for bear and pear,
And then there’s dose and rose and lose —
Just look them up — and goose and choose,
And cork and work and card and ward,
And font and front and word and sword.
And do and go and thwart and cart —
Come, come, I’ve hardly made a start!
A dreadful language? Man alive!
I’d mastered it when I was five!
- attributed to T.S.Watt in 1954 in The Guardian
Ho Ho Ho(a tonic for the chronically phonic)
An honest horse
made his home
in a house
on the hot horizon.
he put on a hood,
dipped his hooves in honey,
and hoisted a flag...
eleven different ways of
- by the poet Mike Jubb from his anthology ‘The Ghost of My Pussycat’s Bottom’
Punctuation can make a difference.
does not mean the same as
- by Willard R. Espy in The Kingfisher Book of Children's Poetry
What’s special about the words Perpetuity, Repertoire and Typewriter?
Complete with seven letters in the same order for each gap:
The -------surgeon was --- ---- to do an operation because there was -- ----- in the operation theatre.
Notice anything interesting about these names?
- Don Edwards
- Robert Woods
- Edith Reed
- Rolf Oursler
- Jeff Ives
- Jessi Xander
- Rose Ventnor
- Leigh Thompson
- Toni Nesbit
- Pete Norris
(From 100 Martin Gardner Wordplay Headscratchers’)
They are all typed using only the top row on a qwerty keyboard.
The notable surgeon was not able to do an operation because there was no table in the operation theatre.
The numbers one to ten are hidden between the first and last names.