Buffalo buffalo

Let’s talk about this sentence for a moment:

Buffalo buffalo, buffalo, buffalo Buffalo buffalo.

Despite the fact that this sentence has a vocabulary of one word — “Buffalo”, in case you missed it — this sentence is a grammatically correct, complete, and pedantic sentence. It works because the word “buffalo” can have several different meanings, and can serve in two different modes without even changing the spelling. A buffalo is an animal, of course, but the word “buffalo” can also be a verb: to “buffalo” someone is to puzzle, baffle, or confuse them. The plural of buffalo is buffalo. And, of course, Buffalo is a city in New York.

Therefore, this sentence means that buffalo from Buffalo buffalo buffalo from Buffalo. Or to parse it out even further:

Buffalo buffalo — i.e., buffalo from Buffalo

,buffalo, — i.e., the buffalo from Buffalo are called buffalo

buffalo — verb, to puzzle, mystify, or confuse

Buffalo buffalo — the buffalo from Buffalo.

You can also read this sentence as:

Buffalo from buffalo, which are called buffalo, puzzle, mystify, or confuse buffalo from Bufflo.

But isn’t it just more fun to say “Buffalo buffalo, buffalo, buffalo Buffalo buffalo”?

So, as you see, the sentence is a perfectly sensible sentence. Of course, I also wanted to come up with some dialogue that consisted only of the word “buffalo”. This is what I came up with:

“Buffalo buffalo –”


“Buffalo. Buffalo buffalo, buffalo…”

“Buffalo buffalo?”

“Buffalo! Buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo.”

“Buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo?”

“Buffalo buffalo, buffalo, buffalo Buffalo buffalo.”

“Buffalo buffalo?”


Works for me.

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