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If you think French pronunciation is difficult, just read this poem in English!


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Wonderful, mint!

Thank god to be born with English as mother tongue, cos it must be an impossible language for a foreigner to speak perfectly.


PS. I stayed with some Australian rellies in a Brisbane suburb called Alcester. I commented on the coincidence that I had grown up near the English town of the same name (using the English pronunciation, of course). They looked mystified to start with, and then said "oh, you mean Al-kes-ter!"
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I didn't know about 'Edinburry', Rabbie, but if it's only locals who call it that, it's not so surprising.

Mint, Happisburgh is a village in Norfolk which has become much smaller than when I first visited many years ago, due to erosion - sadly, a number of houses have fallen into the sea.

The oldest evidence of human occupation anywhere in the UK is there; a few years ago, footprints in sediment were dated to 800,000 years old.

The nearest pronunciation of Happisburgh is Haysbrough/Haysbru.

I included the town of Reading in Berkshire as all the French people in our English conversation group insisted it was 'reading', which is very understandable; they were fascinated to know that with a capital letter it's the town of Reading. Interestingly, there was a centre for reading in Reading - confusing or what?

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Thank you for your explanation, GG.

I can think of something similar to Reading.  Alas, know that town only too well, or at least those bits of it where my professor of studies resided[:(]

I also think of lead as in direct from the front and lead as in what goes into your pencil.

Spent a pleasant afternoon in Keswick once, learning about how pencils were made but Keswick again is a name that might throw a foreign person![:D]

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When English is the tongue we speak

   Why is break not rhymed with freak ?

  Can you tell me why it is

   Namely is written viz ?

  Will you tell why it’s true

   We say sew but likewise few ?

  And the maker of a verse

   Cannot match his horse with worse

  Beard sounds not the same as heard

   Cord is different from word

  Cow is cow but low is low

   Shoe is never rhymed with foe

  Think of hose and dose and lose

   And of goose and yet of choose

  Think of comb, tomb and bomb

   Doll and roll and home and some

  And since pay is rhymed with say

   Why not paid with said,   I pray ?

  We have blood and food and good

   Mould is not pronounced like could

  Wherefore done but gone and lone

   Is there any reason known ?

  Is there any sensible ground

   To say wound for hurt, while string is wound

  Do you call it equity

   To say mutton and yet mutiny

  Do you think it really wise

   To speak advertisements if you advertise

  So in short it seems to me

   Sounds and letters disagree

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