10 Hilarious Malay Tongue Twisters

Malay Tongue Twisters

If you ever have a problem adjusting to a new language and a new crowd, one way to impress people is by challenging them in a tongue twister! It gets the crowd roaring with laughter, especially if someone is highly confident – and fails. And the Malay tongue twisters are one of these phrases to look out for.

And what way to learn a new language like Malay than checking out their deep, confusing, but entertaining vocabulary? Here is a list of 10 hilarious Malay tongue twisters to get you started!

What Are Tongue Twisters?

A tongue twister is a deliberately tricky expression that started first in the 19th century. It was more like a diction exercise to help pronunciation and train to say different complex or similar-sounding words.

They are a set of words that have to be quickly repeated many times. Different cultures and languages have other tongue twisters, but they often have this basic rule: challenging to pronounce; must repeat!

A tongue twister has many benefits, especially since it seems you’re just having fun while saying it. 

  • They help with speech muscles.
  • They help to recognize which words you need help pronouncing.
  • They are used for warm-up exercises in speech.
  • They allow you to gain better control over the language you are learning.

About The Malay Language

Malay language is spoken in several places of the world, especially Malaysia. There it’s called Bahasa Melayu. It is also spoken in Indonesia, Brunei, and Singapore. It is also spoken in East Timor, some parts of the Philippines, and parts of Thailand. The language is Austronesian and is written in Latin script. Old Malay was first spoken in the 7th to 14th centuries.

Malaysia was once ruled by the British Empire. This may have had some influence on the language. English and Malay are similar. It’ll probably be like a snap if you are thinking of learning Malay through English. The script is also the same, so writing and reading should not be difficult. The only commitment you’ll have to make is time.

Are Malay Words Difficult To Pronounce?

Malay is one of the easiest languages to learn! So, the language doesn’t have verb conjugations, tenses, or singular or plural verb forms, and it’s not a tonal language.

Here’s a fun fact: Malay is not a tonal language. And you know what that means? It means that pronouncing it is a piece of cake! There’s no need to stress about those tricky tones. For example, you want to ask your friend how they’re doing. You can confidently approach them and say, “Apa Khabar? (A-pe-ka-ba),” which means “how are you?” 

Do you see? There aren’t any tones. Malay keeps it simple. So go ahead, try it, and impress your friends with your smooth pronunciation skills!

Hilarious Malay Tongue Twisters

10 Hilarious Malay Tongue Twisters

While Malay words may be a breeze to pronounce, let us not shy away from the thrill of tackling something more incredible. So, my dear language learners, let us cast aside the simplicity of Malay. I invite you to embark on a wild and wacky journey through the world of Malay tongue twisters. 

So, if you’re up for the challenge, let’s dive right in and get those pronunciation skills in tip-top shape. Get ready to twist your tongue and have a ton of fun along the way!

Here is a list of very common Malay tongue twisters:

English DefinitionMalay
My sister says that my left toenails are dirty, I scrape my left toenails.Kakak ku kata kuku kaki kiriku kaku; kukikis-kikis kuku kaki kiriku
Babu, the idiot, puts the porridge unto the Baba’s lips.My sister says that my left toenails are dirty. I scrape my left toenails.
When Billy returns from Bali, Billy can buy some balls.Bila Billy balik ke Bali, Billy boleh beli bola-bola
Snake runs straight, then Laila passes by, Laila ran to see the snake running, then Laila ran past the old hallway.Ular lari lurus, lalu Laila lalu lalang, Laila lari lihat ular lari, lalu Laila lari lalu lorong lama
Seventy-seven bamboos fallTujuh puluh tujuh buluh luruh
Crocodile lizardBuaya buaian biawak, Buaya buaian biawak, Buaya buaian biawak, Buaya buaian biawak
Crocodile lizard (similar to the one above)Buaya biawak buaian, Buaya biawak buaian, Buaya biawak buaian, Buaya biawak buaian
Coffee treePokok kopi, pokok kopi, pokok kopi, pokok kopi
Vinegar, soy sauceCuka, kicap, Cuka, kicap, Cuka, kicap, Cuka, kicap
The lallang withers when the lorry passes by.Lori lalu lalang layu, Lori lalu lalang layu, Lori lalu lalang layu, Lori lalu lalang layu
Cuckoo dove turtle doveTekukur ketitir, tekukur ketitir, Tekukur ketitir, tekukur ketitir

The list includes the most famous tongue twisters in the Malay language. You can see that they don’t necessarily make any sense. Several are to be repeated 4 times. This is to kind of bring up the challenge. As an English reader and a Malay reader, the words are written in Latin, so go ahead and keep trying!

Learn Malay With Ling

It is truly fun to know a tongue twister or two and watch reactions as someone watches you roll out a twister in their mother tongue. It is both impressive and a game-changer for a Malay language enthusiast! To help speed up your language learning process, try Ling.

Ling is a gamified language learner app for foreigners who search for the perfect language learning page to no avail. Check out the Ling app with one click on the Play Store or App Store, which will help you master the language easily.

Updated content by Mei

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