Share on Facebook

20 of the Toughest Tongue Twisters in the English Language

How many of these can you say without stumbling?

Try these hard tongue twisters

Think you have a quick tongue? These tongue twisters will put your mouth to the test. See how many you can get through before you start tripping over your words. If you need a brain boost before starting these tongue twisters, try these brain games that will test your smarts.

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Pulled cod

“Pad kid poured curd pulled cod.”

A team of researchers from Massachusetts Institute of Technology say that this is the most difficult tongue twister in the world. Can you say it ten times fast? The psychologists who created this tongue twister said that people who attempted to say it either stopped right in the middle of saying it because it was too difficult or could only get through it once and weren’t able to repeat it. If you couldn’t get this one, give these other hard tongue twisters a try. If you want another challenge, try to spell the most misspelled words in America.

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Brave brigadiers

“Brisk brave brigadiers brandished broad bright blades, blunderbusses, and bludgeons—balancing them badly.”

This tongue twister is a lot longer, so it’s not much easier. You’ll really have to learn to balance your tongue on your teeth correctly to get this one. Here are some of the hardest words to spell in the English language.

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Mad cow

“If you must cross a coarse, cross cow across a crowded cow crossing, cross the cross, coarse cow across the crowded cow crossing carefully.”

You probably don’t want to stand in the way of a coarse, cross cow. But if you try to teach him this tongue twister, he may get distracted from his anger and not hurt you. This is the best way to figure out a word on the tip of your tongue.

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Clam in a can

“How can a clam cram in a clean cream can?”

Trying to get a clam into a can may be easier than saying this tongue twister ten times fast. Check out the toughest winning words from the National Spelling Bee.

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Imaginary menagerie

“Imagine an imaginary menagerie manager managing an imaginary menagerie.”

We’d be happy to imagine an imaginary menagerie because keeping animals in captivity isn’t very nice. Did you know that the most complicated word in the English language is only three letters long?

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Toast for saints

“Send toast to ten tense stout saints’ ten tall tents.”

If these saints are tense and stout, you’re going to want to send a lot of toast. Once you master these hard tongue twisters, try your luck with the most difficult to pronounce towns in every single state.

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Warriors at the brewery

“Rory the warrior and Roger the worrier were reared wrongly in a rural brewery.”

After being at the brewery, Rory and Roger probably wouldn’t be able to say this tongue twister. Here are some funny words you probably never knew about.

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Sick hicks

“Six sick hicks nick six slick bricks with picks and sticks.”

Get your “s” and “k” sounds ready—this one is really tricky. This tongue twisters might make you sound a little silly, but redeem yourself by using these words that make you sound smart.

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Wish of wishes

“I wish to wish the wish you wish to wish, but if you wish the wish the witch wishes, I won’t wish the wish you wish to wish.”

There are a lot of wishes going on here, which makes this a hard tongue twister to tackle! Try these memory tricks to correctly spell the most commonly misspelled words in English.

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Throne thieves

“The 33 thieves thought that they thrilled the throne throughout Thursday.”

This sentence makes a little more sense than the last one. But can you say it really fast? Try out these word puzzles that will leave you stumped.

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Sick sheep

“The sixth sick sheik’s sixth sheep’s sick.”

Is your tongue tired yet? If you want to give your mouth a rest from hard tongue twisters, try exercising your eyes to find the differences in these 10 pictures.

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Canned can

“Can you can a canned can into an un-canned can like a canner can can a canned can into an un-canned can?”

Wasn’t cramming a clam into a can hard enough?

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Thundering horses

“Thirty-three thirsty, thundering thoroughbreds thumped Mr. Thurber on Thursday.”

Just be glad that you only have to say this tongue twister ten times fast and that you’re not Mr. Thurber. Looking for a break from these hard tongue twisters? Try solving 25 of the toughest riddles ever.

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Slit sheet

“I slit the sheet, the sheet I slit, and on the slitted sheet I sit.”

You’ll probably need to take a nap on the slitted sheet after learning how to say this hard tongue twister out loud.

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Red and yellow

“Red lorry, yellow lorry.”

This tongue twister is short, but it’s still challenging. Can you get it on the first try? If you’re looking for a different kind of challenge, check out these word search puzzles that you can print for free.

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Thousand feathers

“Thirty-three thousand feathers on a thrushes throat.”

You might be wondering what thirty-three thousand feathers would look like while trying to say this hard tongue twister.

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Rough rock

“Round the rough and rugged rock the ragged rascal rudely ran.”

Rascals can be rude, but trying to memorize this tongue twister can be a rough and rugged process.

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Timid toads

“Two tiny timid toads trying to trot to Tarrytown.”

Hopefully, these timid toads don’t have too long of a journey to Tarrytown.

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Iguanas and instruments

“Ingenious iguanas improvising an intricate impromptu on impossibly-impractical instruments.”

You might need to ask these ingenious iguanas how to master this hard tongue twister.

Tongue TwisterEmma Kumer/

Southward swans

“Six sleek swans swam swiftly southwards.”

Once you get the hang of this one, you can say it a few times in a row without stumbling. Next, see if you can find the 15 hidden objects in this picture.

Morgan Cutolo
Morgan is an Associate Editor at Reader’s Digest. She graduated from the University of New Hampshire in 2016 where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Journalism. She writes for, helps lead the editorial relationship with our partners, manages our year-round interns, and keeps the hundreds of pieces of content our team produces every month organized. In her free time, she likes exploring the seacoast of Maine where she lives and works remotely full time and snuggling up on the couch with her corgi, Eggo, to watch HGTV or The Office.

Newsletter Unit

CMU Unit

Subscribe & SAVE Save Up To 84%!