1. Education

German Tongue Twisters - Zungenbrecher

German pronunication with "tongue breakers"

By

ZUNGENBRECHER - Introduction

Don't break your tongue!
German tongue twisters are known as "tongue breakers" in German: Zungenbrecher. Many of the classic German tongue twisters easily fit that unique description, but they can be an amusing and entertaining way to practice your German pronunciation. Here is a collection of German tongue twisters—with an English translation of each one.

ZUNGENBRECHER von A bis Z
German Tongue Twisters from A to Z
AUDIO for these tongue twisters!

Acht alte Ameisen assen am Abend Ananas.
Eight old ants ate pineapple in the evening.

Allergischer Algerier, algerischer Allergiker.
Allergic Algerian, Algerian allergic.

Bäcker Braun bäckt braune Brezeln.
Braune Brezeln bäckt Bäcker Braun.

Baker Brown bakes brown pretzels.
Brown pretzels bakes baker Brown.

Bierbrauer Bauer braut braunes Bier.
Beer brewer Bauer brews brown beer.

Der dicke Dachdecker deckte das dicke Dach.
Dann trug der dicke Dachdecker, die dicke Dame durch den dicken Dreck.
Dann dankte die dicke Dame dem dicken Dachdecker,
dass der dicke Dachdecker die dicke Dame durch den dicken Dreck trug.

The fat roofer roofed the thick roof.
Then the fat roofer carried the fat lady through the thick mud.
Then the fat lady thanked the fat roofer
for (the fat roofer) carrying the fat lady through the thick mud.

Esel essen Nesseln nicht, Nesseln essen Esel nicht.
Donkeys don't eat nettles, nettles don't eat donkeys.

Es klapperten die Klapperschlangen,
bis ihre Klappern schlapper klangen.

The rattlesnakes rattled
until their rattles sounded run-down.
(This is a Schüttelreim, or "goat rhyme" - as is the following...)

Es sprach der Herr von Rubenstein,
mein Hund der ist nicht stubenrein.

So spoke Mr. von Rubenstein,
my dog, he's not house-trained.

Es grünt so grün, wenn Spaniens Blüten blühen.
It turns so green when the flowers in Spain flower.
(The German version of "The rain in Spain falls
mainly in the plain" from "My Fair Lady.")

Fischers Fritz ißt frische Fische,
frische Fische ißt Fischers Fritz.

Fischer's Fritz eats fresh fish;
fresh fish eats Fischer's Fritz.
(Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers...)

Graben Grabengräber Gruben?
Graben Grubengräber Gräben?
Nein!
Grabengräber graben Gräben.
Grubengräber graben Gruben.

Do gravediggers dig ditches?
Do ditchdiggers dig graves?
No!
Gravediggers dig graves.
Ditchdiggers dig ditches.

Eine gut gebratene Gans ist eine gute Gabe Gottes.
A well-roasted goose is a good gift of God.

Hottentottenpotentatentantenattentat
Hottentot potentate's aunt assassination
(Note: This long humorous German word uses only seven letters of the alphabet. The correct term for 'Hottentot' is 'Khoi-Khoi,' a now virtually extinct African tribe in what is now Namibia, formerly German South-West Africa.)

Im dichten Fichtendickicht sind dicke Fichten wichtig.
In the thick spruce thicket thick spruces are important.

In Ulm, um Ulm, um Ulm herum.
In Ulm, around Ulm, all around Ulm.

AUDIO for some of these!

MORE > Zungenbrecher - Part 2

  1. About.com
  2. Education
  3. German Language
  4. Speaking German
  5. Pronunciation
  6. German Tongue Twisters - Zungenbrecher in German and English

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.