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Chrząszcz (beetle, chafer) by Jan Brzechwa is a poem famous for being considered one of the hardest-to-pronounce texts in Polish literature. It may cause problems even for adult, native Polish speakers.
|Polish original (help·info)||Phonetic transcription||English translation|
|W Szczebrzeszynie chrząszcz brzmi w trzcinie||[fʂt͡ʂɛbʐɛʂɨɲɛ xʂɔɰ̃ʂt͡ʂ bʐmi ftʂt͡ɕiɲɛ]||In Szczebrzeszyn a beetle sounds in the reeds|
|I Szczebrzeszyn z tego słynie.||[iʂt͡ʂɛbʐɛʂɨn stɛɡɔ swɨɲɛ]||And Szczebrzeszyn is famous for this.|
|Wół go pyta: „Panie chrząszczu,||[vuw ɡɔ pɨta paɲɛ xʂɔɰ̃ʂt͡ʂu]||An ox asks him: "Mister beetle,|
|Po cóż pan tak brzęczy w gąszczu?”||[pɔ t͡suʂ pan tak bʐɛnt͡ʂɨ vɡɔɰ̃ʂt͡ʂu]||What are you buzzing in the bushes for?"|
The first line "W Szczebrzeszynie chrząszcz brzmi w trzcinie" (In Szczebrzeszyn a beetle buzzes in the reed) is a well-known Polish tongue-twister.
Thanks to the poem, the town of Szczebrzeszyn is widely known in Poland. A monument to the beetle was erected there in 2002, and a yearly sculpture festival has been held there ever since.