Nihar Janga, an 11-year-old fifth-grader from Austin, Texas, successfully spelled the word "taoiseach," and won the US Scripps National Spelling Bee.
After being given the word, Janga asked: “is that and Irish word for prime minister?”
“It is,” said pronouncer Jacques Bailly, a previous Bee winner.
Janga correctly spelled the word, bringing cheers from the crowd.
He was named co-champion of the 2016 competition along with Jairam Hathwar, a 13-year-old seventh-grader from Painted Post, New York, on Thursday after battling 25 rounds head to head in the final of the national competition, the Irish Times reports.
The spelling bee ended in a tie after Hathwar successfully spelled “feldenkrais,” a type of somatic education, and Janga nailed “gesellschaft,” a type of social relationship. Jairam’s brother Sriram was a 2014 co-champion.
"Taoiseach, is this an Irish prime minister?" pic.twitter.com/vtH6IcrTRV— Silvia Killingsworth (@silviakillings) May 27, 2016
Both boys will receive a $40,000 cash prize and a trophy. The tie is the third in a row in the spelling bee, which has been held since 1925.
The event was held at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center at National Harbor, Md, and was televised on ESPN.
After the win, Janga, the youngest champion since 2002, thanked his mother and told reporters: “I can’t say anything. I’m just in fifth grade.”
The finalists were determined from more than 280 competitors after two days of written and oral tests in a Washington suburb.