Learning a language is a tricky business. Apart from working hard to build up basic vocabulary, one has to get to grips with grammar, spelling and word order. You learn rule after rule and then the exceptions to the rules. However, one of the trickiest aspects of language learning is the spoken word and with it pronunciation.
If you would like to test your pronunciation abilities try to read the following verses aloud:
Dearest creature in creation,
Study English pronunciation.
I will teach you in my verse
Sounds like corpse, corps, horse, and worse.
I will keep you, Suzy, busy,
Make your head with heat grow dizzy.
Tear in eye, your dress will tear.
So shall I! Oh hear my prayer.
Just compare heart, beard, and heard,
Dies and diet, lord and word,
Sword and sward, retain and Britain.
(Mind the latter, how it’s written.)
Now I surely will not plague you
With such words as plaque and ague.
But be careful how you speak:
Say break and steak, but bleak and streak;
Cloven, oven, how and low,
Script, receipt, show, poem, and toe.
This poem was written by G. Nolst Trenite. To read the full poem visit: http://www.i18nguy.com/chaos.html.