Getting English pronunciation right can be rather tricky…
Just simply consider the fact that the letter combination “ough” can be pronounced in at least 6 different ways – cough, tough, thought, through, though, drought. Totally maddening… What’s worse, there’s not that many rules to go by when trying to pronounce words correctly. For example, how can it be that the word “clothes” is pronounced exactly as “close”, as in “close the door please.” Simple, there are so many silent letters – letters that we see in the spelling of the word but which we don’t say when pronouncing the word.
Do you know the difference between “there”, “their” and “they’re” – all pronounced the same way!
Or, try to say this sentence, “The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert.” “Desert” (meaning leave behind or abandon), “desert” (dry place with little rain and a lot of sand) and dessert (yum cheesecake, for example) – all pronounced differently! Not easy to make sense of that!
For funsies, try this sweet little tongue twister from an english children’s song:
She sells seashells by the seashore,
The shells she sells are seashells, I’m sure.
So if she sells seashells on the seashore,
Then I’m sure she sells seashore shells.
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