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Paris' most iconic street, the Champs-Elysees, was transformed into an open-air mass "dictation" spellathon, Sunday 4 June 2023
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Video. Watch: The Champs-Élysées hosts giant dictation competition

Paris' most iconic street, the Champs-Elysees, was transformed into an open-air mass "dictation" spellathon on Sunday, pitting thousands of France's brainiest bookworms against one another.

Paris' most iconic street, the Champs-Elysees, was transformed into an open-air mass "dictation" spellathon on Sunday, pitting thousands of France's brainiest bookworms against one another.

More than 50,000 people applied to participate in the event, a world first, in which hopefuls attempt to faithfully and without error transcribe a text read to them. 

Of the entries, 5,100 people, aged between 10 and 90 years old, were drawn at random to take part in one of the three major dictations led by novelist Rachid Santaki.

With 1,779 desks laid out on Paris' most famous boulevard in each session, organisers had sought to break the world record for a dictation spelling competition.

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