Clowns are the guys that you supposedly loved when you are a child. Picture a towering figure with a white face and bright red hair, wearing puffy pants and silly floppy shoes. This imposing figure is trying to make you laugh, usually through slapstick comedy.

They are everything your parents warned you about when they told you about Strangers. They offer balloons, sometimes animals, and they want you to come closer. See It and Pennywise the Dancing Clown for further details.

A constable or small town police officer. "Nervo and his mob snatched (kidnapped) the town clown and cowboyed (recklessly invaded) into the jug (bank)."

- american underworld dictionary - 1950

While some people I know are afraid of clowns, others (children, mostly) are delighted by them.

Clowns are people that traditionally dress up in baggy clothes with mismatched colors. They paint their faces and entertain children. As with most Jobs, there are certain skills that a clown must perfect in order to be among the best in his field.

Perhaps the most memorable thing about clowns is the look. A successful clown has to be dressed (im)properly for the occassion. Traditional harlequin dress includes big, red shoes, a plastic red nose, a party hat, baggy clothing (polka dots aren't required, but they're better than say, stripes), and face paint. Different clowns paint their faces in different ways, but when we think of clowns, we think of a white-faced man with a big, red smile.

It's not just about the clothing, though. A proper clown must also be able to clown around. Typically, clowns make balloon animals, do slapstick comedy, make funny noises, ride small bicycles, and do magic tricks. The classic balloon animal is a giraffe, but expert clowns can model things like redwood trees and a 1:1 scale of a water molecule.

Clowns have to like people. A clown with a short temper might ruin someone's birthday party.

If you're looking to stray away from being a conventional clown, you could be a mime or have your own shtick. Buffo, the world's strongest clown, is a good example of this. Or you could specialize in mentally-handicapped rap music clowning. According to an AOL Instant Messenger profile I saw once, there are also clowns that eat people while they sleep. Some people...


Clown (?), n. [Cf. Icel. klunni a clumsy, boorish fellow, North Fries. klnne clown, dial. Sw. klunn log, Dan. klunt log block, and E. clump, n.]


A man of coarse nature and manners; an awkward fellow; an illbred person; a boor.

Sir P. Sidney.


One who works upon the soil; a rustic; a churl.

The clown, the child of nature, without guile. Cowper.


The fool or buffoon in a play, circus, etc.

The clown shall make those laugh whose lungs are tickle o'the sere. Shak.


© Webster 1913.

Clown, v. i.

To act as a clown; -- with it


Behrew me, he clowns it properly indeed. B. Jonson.


© Webster 1913.

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