Fumbling and stumbling upon them, only to manage a notion in deliverance that transpires as something of non comprehensible mumbling even when the words of them are no markings in alienation nor their pronunciation any event in stuttering complexity, those phrases and one liners of never unpretentious mannerisms venturing across such alleys of the linguistic that leads not as much to the clarity of communication as to a conundrum in amusing endeavor are what has captured the fancies of the world despite all their occurring in not much relevance. A definite dwelling in the lanes of the literary and with considerable effectiveness stemming from that fore of their assertion as well but most commonly sought out for the sheer fun of them indeed are tongue twisters that abound in virtually every language and therefore exist in physically every region of the world. Of course the naming of this category of rather nonsensical but also simultaneously witty expressions and phrases needs no elucidation as well. Striking in their very assertion as being twisting of the tongue when one sets out attempting to speak them indeed in as much clarity and swiftness as one can possibly afford, these testers of the tongue (and of patience perhaps as well) stem as being fun endeavors in passing away time or in indulging in some sort of entertaining recreation but they can also as effectively encompass the more accurate precision of which grammared languages are so particular in.
There is no certain theory that explains how the trippy world of the tongue twisters came to chart out its own territory within the linguistic domain. Whether they emerged out of ‘purposes’ of pure fun or were devised rather to aid the overcoming of certain speech impediments as they find significant use today in such capacity, tongue twisters though have managed to hold their own when it comes to the quirk of them. Essentially a phrase made up of such series of words difficult to utter in definite clarity in such continuation as what they are strung across are what make tongue twisters the fumbled upon premise of speaking that they are. And yet this same existential essence of tongue twisters is what makes them also such exercises that are conducive to the proper working out of certain aspects in spoken language. More definitely a sequencing occurring in close knits of similar consonantal sounds that is what makes the proper articulation of them an exercise in considerable difficulty, tongue twisters rely on their employing of a host of specific literary devices to manifest its power in utter difficulty of utterance. Alliteration and rhyme happen to be the most common of such mediums of speech transcending the mere communicative aspect of language to find tremendous area of scope across the twisted trails of the tongue. Compound words and rapid alternation between such phonemes that sound somewhat similar but are of course not the same also make up for much of the premise on which tongue twisters come to be. But whatever the scheme of language adhered to, whether in the universal elements of them that occur though in all uniformity across the different speeches spoken by different people of the world, tongue twisters definitely churn up a whole world of confused clatter and hilarious humour to make for yet another of the engrossing expressions in linguistic literature.
As to the origin of tongue twisters, the period of their emergence is no any clearer than the purpose behind their devising in use or otherwise. But it is believed that tongue twisters have been definitely a thing since the times of the 18th century as far as their prevalence as English phrases are concerned. Interestingly though, tongue twisters have likely existed across different languages as traditional expressions in their own jargon and have been often passed down as well from generation to generation in their very oral deliverance to encompass within them such significance as being elements in folkloric richness. Associated of course with their global prevalence though alluding to their own specific realms of speech and parlance in occurrence would be such ‘mavericks’ of these tongue twisting projections of the saying that brings upon such entertaining indeed coming together of rather ordinary words a relevance that goes beyond their adhering to the fun dimensions. In their very essence that rests wholly upon their missed premise of pronunciation, tongue twisters identify as being a form of diction or articulation exercise. Thus aiding the process of clear and definite speech all through its residing in a kind of fun that leads one to try and try to master their deliverance even in the face of repeated failures without somehow allowing for frustration to set in and abandon this exercise in necessity, the attempt at lending oneself completely in embarking upon the trail of tongue twisters speak of a might that hold those of their kind in such good light.
Tongue twisters are effective because they help exercise the muscles involved in speech, stretching them enough to strengthen them up so as to have us enunciate words more clearly and properly. Pronunciation and fluency are what a regular practice upon this twisted trail grants and through such means that pose as a challenge to us, inciting us therefore to take to this task in linguistic necessity in all our potential. By prodding us to pay our absolute attention to each word and sound so as to entail out of ourselves the accurate deliverance of them, tongue twisters can act as definite attention enhancing tools as well. And what makes these agents otherwise so ‘functional’ as time passing alternatives embody even greater significance is that they tend to go about such exercise of rather exertion in really entertaining mannerisms of it.
It in fact is the very beginning of tongue twisters that occurred as being specific devises of exercises in diction, at least in such terms that denote their official denotation as such. Quite popular in the 19th century were such tongue twisters that came to take upon this particular identity of no figurative inclinations in 1895 even when they had been in circulation since much earlier. It has been the much popular reiteration of the ‘She sells sea shells by the seashore’ that was thought up as one of those exercises in didactic leaning, delivered in 1850 and attempted in much humor by uncountable number of speakers the world over. And despite it being a very English indeed tongue twister not just in the language of its deliverance but also in the folk etymology of it supposedly evoking of the life and work of the English fossil collector Mary Anning involved indeed in such activities of collecting seashells by virtue of her very profession of choosing. The reference continues till date and in very empathic assertion of it as well so as to make tongue twisters equally nestled in the dual dimension of both traditional value and linguistic worth.
The traditional basis of the tongue twister also is not devoid of any reference to language development and learning though. These tricky testers of the tongue’s tonal reach also manifest as exercises in familiarising non native speakers with the sounds unique to that language. Even across this assertion, the enjoyable element is no less evident spanning out as engaging prospects for outsiders to chart out the confines of comfort through before embarking upon the as essential alley of correct diction. For locals and foreigners alike, a partaking of this experience in twisted turns of the tongue can help them identify such sounds that they struggle with and lead them to practice greatly along that line for the eventual mastering of them. With the language under one’s control therefore, one can boast of such skills that present as the desired enumerations in better communication and enhanced confidence so as to excel in virtually every sphere of life so dependent on the art of proper and fluent communication availed out of an impeccable delivery in diction.
Thus in their being as more than mere mediums of eliciting fun and humour- even when they indeed do all and more of that in very enjoyable assertions as well- tongue twisters have remained a largely heralded domain in the human manner of living encompassing of course the crucial fore of the language. But just why and how they manage to be so effective in driving speakers to almost perfection as well as the exact reason why they happen to be the twisters of tongue they indeed are makes for explorations in no lesser a dynamism characteristic of their nature. Occurring across the activity of speech that is in fact the most complex of all motor activities that humans perform, tongue twisters emerge to be tricky trades to master because of overlapping representation that happen in the brain. Because the articulation of sounds by the brain depends not on what they sound like but on which muscles need to be exercised to lead to their enunciation, what ensues is a jumbling up of such awarenesses in continuous sequence that entail to the muscles across the same part of the tongue in their deliverance but that which are distinctly different entities still. And thus tongue twisters turn out to be the notoriously elusive expectations of elocution that one seeks to achieve in all the enjoyable challenge of taking to this terminology through an ultimate yielding of the powers of the tongue.