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[boo-foh; Italian boof-faw] /ˈbu foʊ; Italian ˈbuf fɔ/
noun, plural buffi
[boo-fee; Italian boof-fee] /ˈbu fi; Italian ˈbuf fi/ (Show IPA),
buffos. Music.
(in opera) a comedy part, usually bass.
a male opera singer who specializes in comic roles.
Origin of buffo
1755-65; < Italian: ridiculous, comic actor who takes comic parts; back formation from buffone buffoon Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for buffo
Historical Examples
  • Although the batrachian is of the genus bufo, he is by no means a buffo genius.

  • "Check me another time, Vere, if you see me inclined to be buffo," he said.

    A Spirit in Prison Robert Hichens
  • That, my dear buffo,” I replied, “is on account of the lava.

    Castellinaria Henry Festing Jones
  • And this must be Rosina,” whispered the buffo; “Dio mio, how death has aged her!

    Castellinaria Henry Festing Jones
  • I will tell you presently,” replied the buffo, “we must first go upstairs.

    Castellinaria Henry Festing Jones
  • The buffo said they had made the experiment of shortening it.

    Castellinaria Henry Festing Jones
  • So you see, buffo, you need not trouble about your clothes if you want to appear English.

    Castellinaria Henry Festing Jones
  • Please, buffo,” I inquired, “who is that silver saint upon the piano?

    Castellinaria Henry Festing Jones
  • No,” said the buffo, “that must be one of the things the people do not see, they must imagine the gold.

    Castellinaria Henry Festing Jones
  • Then I said: “buffo mio, we have had a musician and a painter, where is the poet?”

    Castellinaria Henry Festing Jones
British Dictionary definitions for buffo


/ˈbʊfəʊ; Italian ˈbuffo/
noun (pl) -fi (-fɪ), -fos
(in Italian opera of the 18th century) a comic part, esp one for a bass
Also called buffo bass, basso buffo (Italian) (ˈbasso ˈbuffo). a bass singer who performs such a part
Word Origin
C18: from Italian (adj): comic, from buffo (n) buffoon
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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