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LPT Symbol Turkish Tongue Twisters

Was it for this -- that Atatürk reformed the Turkish language?
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In the first three panels of this wonderfully apropos cartoon by Süleyman Özkonuk
(from Türkiye, January 5, 1999),
the young heroine does a credible job of mouthing three of the 'tongue twisters' found
on this page, below. Then, in the fourth panel she says [approximately],
"So...since I can say these phrases, I can easily be a Talk Show host.
What else could I possibly need?

Use your right mouse button to 'View' an enlargement of the cartoon.

Other Pages with sound files

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Click here to download the RealAudio Soundfile Player --

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Tongue Twisters a la Türk

Click Here!

Like a [rolling] stone?whats new
My excellent aubergine...whats new
Imperfect in Czechoslavakia...
To paint or not to paint...
Which Turntable...?
A Bottle for All Seasons
Ali Baba's Forty Broken Handles
Puckered Passages
Then the Eagle Flies...
Pass the Clorets, please
The Barbers of Seferihisar
The Barbers Redux
The Blind Porcupines
Shoe repairs -- not done here!
Raindrops keep falling on our heads...
Well, well, well...whats new

    Like a [rolling] stone?whats new
    A Riddle and a Tongue-Twister Combination!

  • UfacIk mermer tasI, içinde beyler asI, pisirirsen as olur, pisirmezsen kus olur.
    (oo-fah-jihk mehr-mehr tah-shih, ee-cheen-deh behy-lehr ah-shih, pee-shee-reer-sehn ahsh oh-loor,
    pee-sheer-mehz-sehn koosh oh-loor)

    [Sounds] Hear it now! -- (17k bytes)

    [It's surface is like] a small marble stone; inside [maybe] people-chow; if you cook it, it becomes food; if you don't cook it, it becomes a bird.
    What is it? An egg... Thanks, PM 3/00

    BTW, this entry comes to us by way of an original Turkish Shadow Theater 'stage' routine -- found in
    Karagöz Hacivat (Çocuk Bahçesi, ODA YAYINLARI, 1996) by Olcay Göçmen...

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    Well, well, well...whats new

  • indim kuyu dibine, sildim, süpürdüm çIktIm.
    (een-deem koo-yoo dee-bee-neh, seel-deem, soo-pooor-doom, chihk-tihm)

    [Sounds]   Available on CD...

    I went to the bottom of the well, swept, mopped, and came back up.

    Note: Say this three times quickly (like our intrepid and richly-toned speaker) -- at your own risk, in public.
    If you're not careful, you may unintentionally spout an obscenity upon reaching the
    last word in the sentence...

    Thanks Cher and TÇ -- 3/00

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    Imperfect in Czechoslavkia...
    ...in which a real Türk
    actually strains himself saying one of these babies!

    Bless my toes and leg-hair, Marvin...

  • Siz ÇekoslovakyalIlastIrabildiklerimizden misiniz yoksa ÇekoslovakyalIlastIramadIklarImIzdan mIsInIz?
    (sihz cheh-koh-sloh-vahk-yah-lih-lahsh-tih-rah-beel-deek-leh-ree-meez-dehn mee-see-neez yohk-sah cheh-koh-sloh-vahk-yah-lih-lahsh-tih-rah-mah-dihk-lah-rih-mihz-dahn mih-sih-nihz?)

    [Sounds]Hear it now! -- (17k bytes)

    Was it possible for us to Czechoslovakianize you or was it not possible for us to Czechoslovakianize you? Thanks, CB 9/99

    BTW, Jesse tells us that The Guiness Book of World Records
    reckons the longest word in the known world is Turkish:

    (a 50-letter variation of the above) which means:
    'Are you in the group of persons that they say we couldn't Czechoslovakianize?'

    But...strictly speaking, the 'misiniz' suffix in the above should be separated from the rest of the 'word' by a space -- which might cause it to lose its Guiness 'record status'.
    Still, if you're able to overlook that point for a sec (Turkish newspaper-writers overlook it all the time, in order to conserve space -- so why not you?), OG [March 2000, Stanford] offers an even longer alternative:
    "AfyonkarahisarlIlastIrabilemediklerimizdenmiymissiniz?" which means:
    "Are you in the group of persons that they say we couldn't Afyonkarahisarianize?" [Afyonkarahisar is the correct, full city-name for 'Afyon' which is about halfway between Izmir and Ankara on the main bus route...]

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    To paint or not to paint? whats new

  • Bu odayI badanalamalI mI, yoksa badanalamamalI mI?
    (Boo oh-dah-yih bah-dah-nah-lah-mah-lih mih, yoke-sah bah-dah-nah-lah-mah-mah-lih mih?)

    [Sounds] Hear it now! -- (8k bytes)

    Should we paint this room [white] or should we not paint it [white]? Thanks, YB 1/99

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    Raindrops keep falling on our heads...whats new

  • Gökten bir damla düstü, sIp benim alnIma, sIp anamIn alnIna...
    (Gherk-tehn beer dahm-lah duush-tuu, shihp beh-neem ahl-nih-mah, shihp ah-nah-mihn ahl-ih-nah,...)

    [Sounds] Hear it now! -- (23k bytes)

    A drop fell from the sky, plop, on my forehead, plop, on my mother's forehead, etc...
    [Note: If you don't say this one correctly, you quickly cross-over into 'off-color' territory. Write us if you can't figure out why, on your own...]
    Thanks, CB 4/99

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    A Bottle for All Seasons

  • Su köse yaz kösesi, su köse kIssesi, ortada su sisesi.
    (Shoo ker-shey yahz ker-shey-see, shoo ker-shey kihsh ker-shey-see or-tah-dah soo she-shey-see)

    [Sounds] Hear it now! -- (8k bytes)

    That corner is the 'summer' corner, the other corner is the 'winter' corner, and in the middle is a bottle of water. Thanks, YS 4/97

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    Which Turntable...?

  • O pikap, bu pikap, su pikap...
    (Oh pee-cop, boo pee-cop, shoo pee-cop)

    [Sounds] Hear it now! -- (4k bytes)

    That turntable, this turntable, the other turntable there...Thanks, YS 4/97

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    Ali Baba's Forty Broken Handles

  • KIrk küp, kIrkInInda kulpu kIrIk küp...
    (Kihrk kyoop, kihrk-ihn-ihn-da cool-poo kihr-ick kyoop)

    [Sounds] Hear it now! -- (5k bytes)

    Forty cubes, all forty with a broken handle...Thanks, SS 4/97

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    Puckered Passages

  • Semsi Pasa PasajInda sesi büzüseseciler...
    (Shem-see Pah-sha Pash-aj-ihn-da sehs-ee booz-oo-shay-say-chee-lair)

    [Sounds] Hear it now! -- (6k bytes)

    The ones with their voices puckered in the Semsi Pasa Passage-way...
    Thanks, YS 4/97

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    Then the Eagle Flies

  • Kartal kalkar dal sarkar, dal sarkar kartal kalkar.
    (Car-tahl kahl-car dahl sahr-car, dahl sahr-car car-tahl kahl-car)

    [Sounds] Hear it now! -- (9k bytes)

    The eagle takes off, the branch bends; the branch bends, the eagle takes off. Thanks, YS 4/97

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    Pass the Clorets, please!

  • Yogurdu sarmIsaklasaktamI saklasak. SarmIsaklamasaktamI saklasak.
    (Yoh or du sahr mah sock lah sock tahmuh sock lah sock. Sahr mah sock lah mah sock tahmuh sock lah sock)

    [Sounds] Hear it now! -- (9k bytes)

    Should we put the yogurt away with the garlic or without the garlic? Thanks, PM 2/97

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    The Barbers of Seferihisar

  • Bir berber bir berbere bir derede bire berber beri gel demis. Hiç bir berber bir berbere bir derede bire berber beri gel dermiymis.
    (Beer bare bare beer bare bare eh beer derry dey beer eh bare bare berry gehl deymish. Hitch beer bare bare beer bare bare eh beer derry dey beer eh bare bare berry gehl dare mee mish)

    [Sounds] Hear it now! -- (15k bytes)

    One barber said to another barber, "Hey, barber, come over here in the stream." How dare a barber say to another barber, "Hey barber, come over here in the stream!" Thanks, PM 2/97

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    The Barbers Redux

  • Bir berber bir berbere gel beraber Berberistanda bir berber dükkanI açalIm demis.
    (Beer bare bare beer bare bare eh gehl bear-ah-bear Bear-bear-ee-stahn-dah beer bear-bear doo-kahn-ih ahtch-ah-lihm day-mish)

    [Sounds] Hear it now! -- (10k bytes)

    One barber said to another barber, "Come, let's go together and open a barber shop in [the mythical country of] Barberia." Thanks, TÇ 4/97

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    The Blind Porcupines

  • iki kel kör kirpinin yIrtIk kürküne disi kel kör kirpinin yIrtIk kürkünü eklemisler.
    (Ick-ee kell kur keer-pin-in yihr-tihk cure-kyoon-eh dee-she kell kur keer-pin-in yihr-tihk cure-kyoon-oo eck-ley-mish-lair)

    [Sounds]   Available on CD...

    They added the ragged coat of the bald blind female porcupine to the coats of the other two bald blind porcupines. Thanks, YS 4/97
    [Bet'cha that one twists tongues in any language! What'cha think...?]

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    Shoe Repairs -- not done here!

  • Al su takatukalarI, takatukacIya götür. TakatukacI takatukalarI takatukalamam derse, takatukalarI, takatukacIdan takatukalatmadan geri getir.
    (Ahl shoe tah-kah-took-kah-lar-ih tah-kah-took-kah-jee-yah grr-tour, tah-kah-took-kah-jee tah-kah-took-kah-lar-ih tah-kah-took-kah-lah-mom dare-say, tah-kah-took-kah-lar-ih, tah-kah-took-kah-jee-dehn tah-kah-took-kah-lot-mah-dahn gherry get-tihr)

    [Sounds] Hear it now! -- (19k bytes)

    Take these "takatuka"
    [wooden sandals often worn in Turkish Baths -- that make the 'takatuka' sound when you walk]
    to the "takatuka" repair man. If the "takatuka" repairman says, "I don't repair "takatukas", then take back the "takatukas" from the "takatuka" repairman. Thanks, TÇ 6/97

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