No. of Recommendations: 4
That gives us an extraordinary eight different and distinct pronunciations for the same letter group.

There is an old I Love Lucy episode in which Ricky is trying to read aloud a child's story in English in preparation for his baby to come. He runs into just this situation with the various iterations of pronunciation for "ough." He finally throws up his hands in despair and gives up.

For those of us raised in the English language, it is a funny episode. But I have often thought how frustrating it must be for ESL (English as a Second Language) students.

The nice thing about Spanish and Italian is that the words pretty much follow simple rules as to pronunciation. Even with French, while more challenging, there are basic rules that one can sort of count on. With English, having borrowed from so many languages, there are times when all bets are off. 🤔

I am sometimes thankful that I was born to English, as I feel that learning other languages is easier.

Best regards,
Print the post  


What was Your Dumbest Investment?
Share it with us -- and learn from others' stories of flubs.
When Life Gives You Lemons
We all have had hardships and made poor decisions. The important thing is how we respond and grow. Read the story of a Fool who started from nothing, and looks to gain everything.
Contact Us
Contact Customer Service and other Fool departments here.
Work for Fools?
Winner of the Washingtonian great places to work, and Glassdoor #1 Company to Work For 2015! Have access to all of TMF's online and email products for FREE, and be paid for your contributions to TMF! Click the link and start your Fool career.