Do you know any Japanese tongue-twisters?

Japanese tongue twisters are called Hayakuchi kotoba (早口言葉). Here are some examples gleaned from the newsgroup.

Migi mimi migi me migi me migi mimi

右耳右目右目右耳

Translation: Right ear, right eye, right eye, right ear.


Basu gasu bakuhatsu

バスガス爆発

Translation: Bus gas explosion.


Tonari no kyaku wa yoku kaki kuu kyaku da

となりの客はよく柿食う客だ

Translation: The guest next door is a guest who eats a lot of persimmons.


Oyagame-no senaka-ni kogame-o nosete,
kogame-no senaka-ni magogame-nosete,
magogame-no senaka-ni himagogame-nosete,
oyagame koketara kogame magogame himagogame koketa

おやがめの背中にこがめをのせて、
こがめの背中にまごがめのせて、
まごがめの背中にひまごがめのせて、
おやがめこけたらこがめまごがめひまごがめこけた。

Translation: ?


Sumomo mo momo mo momo no uchi.

李も桃も桃のうち。

Translation: Both plums and peaches are members of the peach family.


Uraniwa ni wa niwa, niwa ni wa niwa niwatori ga iru.

裏庭には二羽庭には二羽鶏がいる。

Translation: There are two chickens in the back yard, and two in the front yard.


Naga machi no nana magari. Nagai nanamagari.

長町の七曲り。長い七曲り。

Translation: ?


Ura no yabu ni dare take tatekaketa? Take tatekaketai kara take tatekaketa.

裏の藪に誰竹立て掛けた。竹立て掛けたいから竹立て掛けた。

Translation: ?


Yashi no mi wo shishi ga kui, hishi no mi wo hihi ga kui.

椰子の実を獅子が喰い、菱の実を狒狒が喰い

Translation: ?


Nama-mugi nama-gome nama-tamago

生麦生米生卵

Translation: Raw wheat, raw rice, raw eggs


Aka-maki-gami, ki-maki-gami, ao-maki-gami

赤巻紙、黄巻紙、青巻紙

Translation: Red scroll, yellow scroll and blue scroll.


Kaeru pyoko-pyoko, mi pyoko-pyoko, awasete pyoko-pyoko, mu pyoko-pyoko.

Translation: A frog jumps pyoko-pyokoly (twice), pyoko-pyokoly (three times), and pyoko-pyokoly (six times in all).


Bōzu ga byōbu ni jōzu ni bōzu no e wo kaita

坊主が屏風に上手に坊主の絵を書いた。

Translation: The priest skillfully painted a picture of a priest on a screen


Kisha no kisha wa kisha de kisha shita.

貴社の記者は汽車で帰社した。

Translation: The news reporter of your company returned by train.



If you have questions, corrections, or comments, please contact Ben Bullock or use the discussion forum / Privacy

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