priceless! I've seen some of these, but nothing to this extent.
Having my undergraduate degree in English, where one of my minors was
Linguistics, the evolution of any language is really a beautiful thing.
It's fascinating to study shifts in pronunciations (some of which come from
ancient tribes overrunning areas or provinces and bringing their own
pronunciations to common words, etc.). Anyway, English is a real
combination of so many words, phrases, and pronunciations from other languages
because of its origins in Europe, first of all, and then because of the many
invaders to England itself; so, it's no wonder we still have to learn a
lot of it by rote, since the logic of it all is no longer
Perhaps this will make the Czech language easier to appreciate?
THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE IS HARD TO LEARN
1) The bandage was wound around the
2) The farm was used to produce produce.
3) The dump was so full
that it had to refuse more refuse.
4) We must polish the Polish
5) He could lead if he would get the lead out.
6) The soldier
decided to desert his dessert in the desert.
7) Since there is no time like
the present, he thought it was time to present the present.
8) A bass was
painted on the head of the bass drum.
9) When shot at, the dove dove into
10) I did not object to the object.
11) The insurance was
invalid for the invalid.
12) There was a row among the oarsmen about how to
13) They were too close to the door to close it.
14) The buck does
funny things when the does are present.
15) A seamstress and a sewer fell
down into a sewer line.
16) To help with planting, the farmer taught his
sow to sow.
17) The wind was too strong to wind the sail.
18) After a
number of injections my jaw got number.
19) Upon seeing the tear in the
painting I shed a tear.
20) I had to subject the subject to a series of
21) How can I intimate this to my most intimate
Let's face it - English is a crazy
There is no egg in eggplant nor ham in hamburger;
neither apple nor pine in pineapple.
English muffins weren't
invented in England or French
Sweetmeats are candies while sweetbreads, which aren't
sweet, are meat.
We take English for granted. But if we
explore its paradoxes, we find that
quicksand can work slowly, boxing rings
are square and a guinea pig
is neither from Guinea nor is it a
And why is it that writers write but fingers don't fing, grocers
and hammers don't ham?
If the plural of tooth is teeth,
why isn't the plural of booth beeth?
One goose, 2 geese. So one moose,
One index, 2 indices?
Doesn't it seem crazy that you
can make amends but not one amend, that you
comb through annals of history
but not a single annal? If you have a bunch
of odds and ends and get rid of
all but one of them, what do you call it?
If teachers taught, why
didn't preachers praught? If a vegetarian eats
vegetables, what does a
Sometimes I think all the English speakers
should be committed to an asylum
for the verbally insane. In what language
do people recite at a play and
play at a recital? Ship by truck and send
cargo by ship? Have
noses that run and feet that
How can a slim chance and a fat chance be the same, while
a wise man and a
wise guy are opposites? How can overlook and oversee be
quite a lot and quite a few are alike? How can the weather
hot as hell one day and cold as hell another?
you noticed that we talk about certain things only when they are
Have you ever seen a horseful carriage or a strapful gown?
Met a sung
hero or experienced requited love? Have you ever run into
someone who was
combobulated, gruntled, ruly or peccable! ? And where are
all those people
who ARE spring chickens or who would ACTUALLY
You have to marvel at the unique lunacy of a language in
which your house
can burn up as it burns down, in which you fill in a form
by filling it out
and in which an alarm goes off by going
English was invented by people, not computers, and it
creativity of the human race (which, of course, isn't a race
That is why, when the stars are out, they are visible, but
when the lights
are out, they are invisible. And why, when I wind up my
watch, I start it,
but when I wind up this essay, I end it?
this thread on the web at
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