Tuesday, September 1

I Love The English Language...

...truly I do, which is why I've studied it so faithfully. Now you may be asking, what is this all about? Well, I'll tell you. English has to be one of the most confusing languages, there are so many different things about the language such as same spellings with different pronunciations and meanings, and same pronunciations with different spellings and meanings, not to mention same spelling, same pronunciation, different meaning. See what I mean, if not why don't you try this on for size?

He brought his bow to the bow of the ship and proceeded to bow to the captain. That was when he noticed the pine bough being swung at his head!

Then there is always the rule about "I" before "E" except after "C" and in words such as neighbor and weigh. What about words such as Rottweiler, or weird? There's no "c" in either of those words, nor is there the "gh" that is in neighbor and weigh.

Speaking of the "gh" causes another bit of confusion with it sometimes being silent and sometimes sounding like an "f". For example we've got words like enough, sounds like an "f”, BUT then there are words like neighbor and weigh (to use the same examples as before). Confusing, don't you think?

And if that's not confusing enough for you, here are a few more confusing examples:


All start with "t" all end in "ough" but not once is that combination pronounced the same.

What else is there about the English Language that we can find to be confusing?

How about this? There was a tear in my eye when I saw the tear in my dress!

Or this? I read a book that I was told was a really good read about the different shades of red.

Then there's this: Where did you wear that?

Or this: I hear there is a good restaurant around here.

This one is from Munchkin: He was vain about his veins popping out when he was working out, and also vain about what he thought of as his most superior looking weather vane.

Want some more confusion? I will not try to untie that knot going 100 naught’s!

Then there are the "f" sounds with the "ph" spelling such as photograph. Are you getting confused yet?

Here's a post that goes beyond spelling things phonetically, I hope you can all read it by the end. I have a question though, why isn't the word phonics and all it's compatriots spelled phonetically? If they were, they'd be spelled with the "f" instead of "ph" don't ya think?

And if you truly want to be confused by correctly spelled but improperly used words, check out this post Eye Halve a Spelling Chequer.

Here is some more phonetic fun for you to enjoy! Yes a couple of these posts are rather old, one is from my blog of the alter ego and another fairly recent. I just hope that you enjoy them all  :D

That's all I have for today, but just so you know, I had all this nonsense running through my head and just had to share it will all of you. Hope I didn't confuse you too much.


  1. Oh, but Skye, there are more conguing things in your language! In ours, each letter has ONE sound. he vowels may be narrow or wide, but that's about it. Very few exceptions. But then, we can't have a spelling bee competition... what's the point?

    If you want confusion, let me tell you ONE CORRECT BUT CONFUSING SENTENCE: Police police police police police police. Heard about that? Some of those six words are nouns, some verbs and there's an adjective. Now figure it out. Need help? Just ask.

  2. Great post. I don't understand how people learn English as a second language. It's crazy.

  3. Minka - it sounds like your language would be a relatively easy one to learn. As for that sentence of yours, well let's just say that's a tough one! Police that police the police are police that police. Does that sound about right? If not, please correct me :)

    Reffie - I don't know either. It's the only language that I speak fluently. Probably because when I try to learn another language, I keep thinking the rules for English apply to all languages. Somehow I've got to get past that mental block of mine!

  4. Of course, the problem with English is that only 2% of it is actually English (literally -- that's not an exaggeration). The rest comes from the languages of those who kept invading the island. Gave us the largest vocabulary in the world, but it sure messed up the spelling.

    The advantage of this wacky spelling, however, is that a well-educated English speaker can see a word that he's never seen before, and have a good idea of what it means. It can also reveal much about the history of the word, and even indicate when it entered the language.

    The spelling sucks -- but it's packed with information.

  5. Frank - Welcome to my blogging home! You know, I had actually forgotten that about the English language, thanks for reminding me :)

  6. Skye, is it possible that you ERASED one of my comments? :( I'm pretty sure I wrote another one...

    About our language, being easy to learn - yes, when it comes to spelling and reading, but grammar is so not easy! It's got plenty of declination and conjugation and we also have THREE grammatical numbers: singular, DUAL and plural. In Slovenian you can say "We love eachj other" in two ways, one of them referring to TWO people only (Imava se rada.")

    The whole thing is quitze difficult, really, but I love it! :)

    The "police" sentence - you know by now what it means... Students and teachers of English probably know more such examples than native speakers.

  7. Hi Skye!
    I used to keep a word jail for kids to enter all the words that don't follow the rules. (We called the outlaw words.) It actually had bars and a lock on the door and everything. Very cool.
    Can't wait to check out "Eye Halve a Spelling Chequer."

    Cat Lady (the y usually makes a long e sound at the end of a word... just in case you wanted to know.)

  8. They say that English is the hardest language to learn. Now I remember why.

  9. Minka - Somehow none of that surprises me, I'm not sure why exactly! Anyway, if you had posted another comment, I'm very sorry, but I hadn't gotten it! You're right though, students and teachers probably do know a lot more such sentences. I used to know a few of them when I really studied the language, but I've forgotten more about English than most people learn :(

    Cat Ladee :D - That whole jail thing sounds really cool, a great fun way for kids to learn the language!

    ThinkinFYou - And these are only a small sampling as to why ;)

  10. The english language is something else, is'nt it? You mention how some words can spell the same way but sound different? HA HA ! I got one for you. I lived in 2 cities that were spelled the same but were pronouced differently.The one was in S.C. and the other one is here in N.C. Anyway the 2 cities are named Beaufort. One is pronouced Beau-fort the other is Bo-fort. LMAO!

  11. It is funny how words are spelled the same way but, pronounced different.I used to live in Beaufort South Carolina,and I sometimes go to Beaufort North Carolina.One is pronounced B-u-fort and the other is pronouced Bo-fort.Ha Ha!Thats really messed up!

  12. I think I might of put 2 of the same comments in but the comment was different.LMAO!!!

  13. Okay okay, Skye... I believe you, totally! :D

    English is not really hard to learn - every other language I know at least a little abot has more grammar rules than English, more differences between different persons and cases.

    The hard part starts when yu come to phrase verbs and idioms - but then, other languages have that, too.

    How common is it where you live that people study foreign languages?

    My advantage is also (I guess) that we have everything subtitled and not dubbed. I have always been able to hear native speakers this way. This also goes for other languages, but particularly for English.

  14. Skye, I have missed you terribly. I used to make words out of the sounds you describe. You almost can make a secret language out of it. It has been many years but one word I remember was "ghoti" I declare it says "fish"

  15. Donna - Yep, you posted a few times, but no worries it's all good! :D Anyway, that with the towns of Beaufort is strange and interesting. Thanks for telling me about it!

    Minka - Yes, a lot of people do study foreign langugages around here. The local schools even have French Immersion from Kindergarten up till grade 12. I just wish there were more language options like German and Spanish seeing as those are the primarily spoken languages in this town aside from English. Trouble is though that Canada is a Bi-lingual country that caters to French and English with no other language being "important".

    Etta - I have missed you a lot too, I'm using Silv's computer at the moment, but providing we can get mine going I think I may have figured out a way to get around my comp problems to be able to come and visit you! At the moment (just started about 2 hours ago) my computer has decided that it doesn't have a mouse attached and refuses to recognize one no matter which one we put on.

    Anyway, as for your comment isn't "ghoti" a type of beard, not fish? Or is that the wrong spelling? Probably is...lol.

  16. In our seminars we came to a conclusion that students havemost problems with "to" "too" and "to" and with "then" and "than". I don't remember anything else at the moment but I know our professor found tons of mistakes like that :) One of mine was except "instead" of "accept" in one of my previous posts. :P

    However, English is definitely NOT a difficult language to learn. Try Slovenian! Here you can see how difficult our language is from an English point of view. :)



  17. Wow Poppy, thanks :) You and your mom are the only two people whom I know that have learned English as a second language and say that it's not all that difficult!

    I'll check out that site you posted later today when I get home from work. I'm really interested in languages, so it should be a good read :)


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