Definitive Proof That We Americans Have No Idea What A "Mouthful" Is

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Definitive Proof That We Americans Have No Idea What A "Mouthful" Is

By Joanna Robinson | Videos | August 6, 2013 | Comments ()


Alright my little polyglots and logophiles, here are some comely people from around the world struggling to pronounce the longest word in their native language. You think antidisestablishmentarianism is bad? You ain’t seen nothing yet. Predictably, many of the longer words pertain to government concepts but the best of all are the awesomely cumbersome portmanteaus. So go ahead, word freaks, wrap your tongues around this.

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  • Guest

    But we do know what a "sausage in the mouth"ful is.

  • Zirza

    I hate to be a killjoy (I don't, really) but most of this is cheating. Most Germanic languages, though not English, can form noun compounds, allowing for the creation of seemingly infinite words like "eindexamenkandidatenkoffiekamerkanverffabrikantenontslagregelings-commissielidomkopingsschandaalenqueteuitslag" (results of the questionnaire about the bribing of members of the committee responsible for the dismission policy of a factory of paint for pots for coffee rooms for final exam candidates). However, you would never use these words in practice. The longest word in the Van Dale Dutch dictionary is "wapenstilstandsonderhandeling" (cease-fire negotiation) and the longest word in official documents is "ziektekostenverzekeringsmaatschappij" (health insurance company). Less impressive.

  • andrew

    I always thought the longest word in the English language was pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis.

  • Guest

    Wow. The header photo for this post of J-Law was probably most peoples reaction to that header photo from the post below of that scene(s) in G.O.T.

  • BWeaves

    My favorite?


    The fear of long words.

  • Samantha Klein

    No Welsh?? C'mon...

  • Teaflax

    The Swedish girl at the end screws it up - badly. Not only does she tonally indicate word separation, she also pauses AND misses a few syllables. Pathetic.

  • wojtek

    Hah. Was about to list ours, but then saw that it made the cut. Goooo consonants!

  • Berry

    Since that video had no Finnish and I have nothing better to do right now, here we go:


    a person studying to become a jet engine mechanic sergeant in the army


    That's not a portmanteau, just one word with a lot of suffixes. I'm not sure how to translate it. Will have to get back to you. Try not to get quite besides yourselves with anticipation.

  • mograph


  • mograph

    ... as in "got that translation yet?"

  • Berry

    Well, it's difficult, because the whole word is such an artificial construction, so in a way it means nothing. Buuut the root word (epäjärjestelmällinen) means disorganized or messy. And then I think the word refers to someone who is trying to become a less disorganized person and the speaker of the word is wondering if that attempt has any effect. It's definitely a question, or a wonderment. An expression of skepticism, if you will.

    That's all I got for now.

    ETA It's super unfair that everyone else in the internet sleeps when I'm bored at work and need someone to entertain me. I can't very well have a conversation with myself.

  • BendinIntheWind

    Psh, I need a nap after just trying to mentally erase all those dots above your vowels. Ouch in my brain box.

  • Berry

    Ha, how about this one: pääjääjää.

    And also this: Älä rääkkää kääkkää kääkänrääkkääjä!

    En mä kääkkää rääkkääkkään. Älä kääkätä kääkänrääkkäämisestä.

    Translation: Don't torment that old man, you old man tormentor!

    I'm not tormenting the old man. Stop nagging me about tormenting the old man.

  • BendinIntheWind

    I don't even care if you're lying to me, this is the greatest thing I've ever read.

  • Berry

    Oh, how you wound me so. Would I really lie to you, WOULD I?

    Seriously though, that old man tormentor is as real as any tongue twister, like that woodchuck thing. So no, no two Finns ever actually had that conversation. More's the pity, really.

  • Uriah_Creep

    Well, how do you expect me to sleep now??

  • Berry


  • ,

    There has to be something in Welsh twice as long as that last one.

  • TheOfficialGuest


  • Jo 'Mama' Besser

    Is this the same Welsh town that had its own song with a melody based on 'Girl From Ipanema'?

  • Erich

    That translates to "Middletown"

  • Fabius_Maximus

    I believe it's a town's name.

  • Leland Eidson

    That last one there, no, just no.

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