9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[buh-foon] /bəˈfun/
a person who amuses others by tricks, jokes, odd gestures and postures, etc.
a person given to coarse or undignified joking.
Origin of buffoon
1540-50; earlier buffon < French < Italian buffone, equivalent to buff- (expressive base; compare buffa puff of breath, buffare to puff, puff up one's checks) + -one agent suffix ≪ Latin -ō, accusative -ōnem
Related forms
[buh-foo-nuh-ree] /bəˈfu nə ri/ (Show IPA),
buffoonish, adjective
1. jester, clown, fool. 2. boor. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for buffoon
  • Expect more than oversize shoes and squirting flowers at this year's three-week celebration of all things buffoon.
  • Anyway, childish heckling says more about the buffoon than the speaker.
  • When another news crew showed up, the big buffoon did it all over again.
  • Both buffoon and mime, he trips his way through two silent signature pieces.
  • It's surely a sign of intellectual cowardice to imagine a buffoon as the face of an opposing ideology.
  • If the racist buffoon wastes his money on hateful ads, the people will all know what he stands for.
  • To anyone else this balderdash merely confirms him as a buffoon.
  • In popular culture, he has often been portrayed as something of a buffoon.
  • At best, it's a quick way to be branded a fashion buffoon by the style elite.
  • They get rid of a buffoon and it doesn't cost them a dime.
British Dictionary definitions for buffoon


a person who amuses others by ridiculous or odd behaviour, jokes, etc
a foolish person
Derived Forms
buffoonery, noun
Word Origin
C16: from French bouffon, from Italian buffone, from Medieval Latin būfō, from Latin: toad
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for buffoon

1540s, "type of pantomime dance;" 1580s, "clown," from Middle French bouffon (16c.), from Italian buffone "jester," from buffa "joke, jest, pleasantry," from buffare "to puff out the cheeks," a comic gesture, of echoic origin. Also cf. -oon.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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