If you struggle to pronounce some words in English, you are not alone. English is one of the most difficult languages to learn due to its many grammar rules and complexities.

As such, it is no surprise that English has some of the hardest words to pronounce, leaving both native and non-native speakers tongue-tied. 

The English language is a melting pot of diverse influences, with a lexicon that has been around for centuries. 

These challenging words seem to defy the logic of phonetics. From seemingly simple words like “squirrel” to complex words like “otorhinolaryngologist.”

Worse, the way some English words are spoken follows a complex pattern. Unlike certain languages like French or Spanish, the connection between the written form of words and their spoken form isn’t always straightforward.

Things like silent letters and words borrowed from other languages are just two of the many reasons why these difficult-to-pronounce words exist in the first place

So lets’ get going with our list of the hardest words to say in English….


Beguile is a verb that means to deceive or charm someone in a sly or deceptive manner. This word is commonly misspelt due to its unusual spelling, leading to its mispronunciation. 

Pronunciation: This word is pronounced as “bee-gile”

Example sentence: The con artist used his cunning words to beguile victims into giving him their money.


Quinoa is at the top of the list for those who are health-conscious due to its “superfood” characteristics.

However, that is not the only list that it tops. “Quinoa” is one of the most complicated words to pronounce in English.

Despite its popularity, many people struggle with pronouncing this word. This is mainly due to its unique blend of numerous vowels.

Though pronouncing it as “kee-no-a” is becoming popular, this isn’t the correct pronunciation.

Pronunciation: This word is pronounced as “keen-wah”

Example sentence: She replaced rice with quinoa in her stir-fry recipe for added nutrients.


An “isthmus” refers to a narrow passage of land between two seas. 

The word isthmus is a challenge for many because most English speakers would be tempted to pronounce the TH in this word. However, in this case, the TH is silent similar to the silent TH in asthma.

Many are confused as the combination of “th” does not exist in some languages, such as German and Dutch. What’s funny is that it is silent, so you can ignore it anyway. 

Pronunciation: This word is pronounced as “is-muhs”

Example sentence: The resort was nestled on a beautiful tropical isthmus with beaches on both sides.


A great charcuterie board is hard to resist and even harder to say. These boards have become a trendy snack that people create for picnics, date nights, or indulging on their own. 

A charcuterie board is a selection of cold, cured or smoked meats, cheese and fruits served on a wooden board or platter. 

While it sounds delicious, it is a mouthful to say, even for English speakers. From “charkutery” to “shahcutery” and “charcuterie”, people have pronounced this difficult word many different ways. 

Pronunciation: This word is pronounced as “shahr-koo-tuh-ree”

Example sentence: She prepared a charcuterie spread for the picnic, which included prosciutto, salami, and artisanal cheeses.


[ow·tuh·rai·now·la·ruhng·go·luh·juhst]Doctors who specialise in this area are called otorhinolaryngologists, otolaryngologists, head and neck surgeons, or ENT surgeons or physicians.


[seh·skwuh·puh·day·lee·uhn] Originating from 17th century Latin and originally meaning ‘a foot and a half long’, this word literally stands for ‘long-winded’ words, such as Sesquipedalian. And one would think it would mean something really mysterious and fascinating. But no, just ‘long.’


[o·nuh·ma·tuh·pee·uh] Referring to words that are similar to sounds or noises, these words are often used for “boom” or “buzz.” Although the imitated words are usually very short, the word onomatopoeia is weirdly long and difficult to pronounce. Just looking at the word makes me stutter. But just like everything else, practice makes perfect.


[wu·stuh·shuh] Without any doubt this is one of the most tongue twisting single words out there. It will make you feel small and untalented, or it will make you laugh until you cry, one of them. Historically being a county of west central England, it is also a unique sauce for food and drink (yes, also drinks), sometimes also called ‘Worcester sauce’.

To give you a little hint on how to pronounce it, the first ‘R’ in the word is silent. It is still a difficult word, but if you are having difficulties with this one, you are definitely not alone, I am certain of that.

Some more bonus words

Curmudgeon [kur-muhj-uhn]- a crusty irascible cantankerous old person full of stubborn ideas

Debauch [di-bawch]- To lead away from virtue; to corrupt morally.

Diaphragm [dy-uh-fram]- An organ for breathing between separation the thorax from the abdomen.

Equanimity [ee-kwuh-nim-uh-tee] – Calmness and composure.

Floccinaucinihilipilification [flok-suh-naw-suh-ny-hil-uh-pil-uh-fi-kay-shun] – The action or habit of estimating something as worthless.

Heinous [HAY-nuhs] – Extremely wicked or cruel; evil.

Kaleidoscopic [kuh-leye-duh-skawp-ik] – Having complex patterns of colours.

Lackadaisical [lak-uh-day-zee-kul] – Doing something in a lazy way.

Neophyte [nee-uh-fyt]- A beginner, a new participant.

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