Oxford Dictionaries spelling challenge
Thread poster: RominaZ

RominaZ  Identity Verified
Member (2006)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Jul 25, 2011

This thread is part of the Translator playground: a place for translators to have fun, to network, to learn, and to hone their translation or linguistic skills. See the announcement here.

Need a quick break from work? In this forum translators and language professionals can share quotes about translation, tongue twisters and word plays, translation challenges, etc.

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Would you like to test your spelling skills with the Oxford Dictionaries Spelling Challenge? Can you spell words like quiescent, millennium, accommodation, and bureaucracy? Could you get a perfect score on the fiendish level? Take the challenge and post your score in this thread.

Take the challenge here.

Note: This game needs audio to work

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Phil Hand  Identity Verified
Local time: 10:30
Chinese to English
Who's reading these words! Jul 25, 2011

I went and tried, and got 13/15

I made one real mistake (got "piccalilli" wrong), but the other dropped mark was for a word I didn't know. I listened three times to try to work out what it was...


That's what I heard. Doy-ki-a-ri. Three times. I gave up. I spelled phonetically. It was wrong.

Come the end of the test, I go back to find out what it was...

Well, I'll leave you to guess. Anyone who can intuit what that individual was trying to say is a better person than me. I'll tell you in a while, if anyone's interested.

But I want my point back. Because that word ain't pronounced doichiary. I'm claiming a 14/15 here!

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Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:30
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Thank you! Jul 25, 2011

Not being a speaker of English, the challenge was awfully interesting!

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Werner Maurer  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:30
Spanish to English
+ ...
Easy, sort of Jul 25, 2011

Started right off with fiendish level, British spelling, played four rounds. Here's some observations, and my scores if interested:

1-15 (first round) not fiendish at all, but got gradually trickier after the first coupla dozen or so.

Occasional repeats started at 30, by 40 there had been 3. Got tired of them by 60 so didn't go for a fourth replay (no time, anyway).

Found it a bit skewed, 'cause rather heavy on the loanwords. One word was completely unknown to me (got it wrong of course); got American spelling but not British on another; misunderstood one word (synagogue, thought they said cynical, would have got it right). A few of the words bordered on jargon, IMO.

About a third of the words struck me as ones that pretty much everyone ought to know how to spell.

37/45 (only scored 9/15 for words 31-45!)
52/60 (not so hot at all)

Fun all the same. And I learned to pronounce a few that I've read a million times but never heard!

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Oxford Dictionaries spelling challenge

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