Tag Archives: language

Word Play

This is a really useful site, which I’ve somehow missed before now:

Are you wandering through an art gallery, and become fearful that your new date will laugh at you if you mispronounce trompe-l’oeil? Never fear! Just pop to the loo with your phone for a moment, and Forvo will let you find and listen to a number of native French speakers saying exactly that phrase. You can then return confident and ready to impress!

Passing through Scotland, and want to ask the way to Culzean or Glen Garioch without the locals sniggering at you?

It will do translations too. If you need to call for a helicopter to lift you off a German mountain, Forvo will both tell you the word, and how to say it.

The great thing about this is that it isn’t an automated voice; these are real people speaking, and you can often compare the same word being spoken by people from different regions. If you’re already familiar with it, you can vote on who pronounces it best, and if you think everybody has got it wrong, you can contribute a recording yourself.

BellĂ­simo! (as they say in Mexico)

© Copyright Quentin Stafford-Fraser