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I have seen that buffalo buffalo... has been posted here before. However some sites claim also that the sentence

Fish fish fish fish fish fish fish.

makes sense. Can someone confirm and explain?

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closed as off topic by MrHen, JSBձոգչ, Grant Thomas, Daniel, kiamlaluno Jul 25 '11 at 19:04

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The fish example is mentioned in the end of the Buffalo buffalo Wikipedia page, and there is some discussion in the talk page about whether "fish" works because some speakers may not consider it a transitive verb, without "for". If you wouldn't normally "fish the creek" then this example might not work well for you. –  aedia λ Jul 25 '11 at 17:02

2 Answers 2

From this site:

Fish (direct object) fish (subject) fish (verb) fish (verb) fish (direct object) fish (subject) fish (verb).

...in other words, the fish that fish take sport in fishing also take sport in catching fish that the aforementioned fish take sport in catching.

Edited because I couldn't resist stealing @FumbleFinger's clarifying comment:

Pike [that] perch catch [also] catch pike [that] perch catch.

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The site does not really resolve it. In fact the person who wrote that question is the one who questions if it makes sense.. –  picakhu Jul 25 '11 at 16:40
    
Yes, but it still gives a good outline of how it might make sense if possible. That's the point of my answer: to find a plausible structure for the "sentence". –  Daniel Jul 25 '11 at 16:48
    
After reading the sentence "Dogs cats nip nip cats dogs nip." The sentence makes sense. –  picakhu Jul 25 '11 at 16:52
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By substitution, Pike [that] perch catch [also] catch pike [that] perch catch. So it is parsable, but I don't think you can extend the repetitions indefinitely. Which I think you can with buffalo, because one of its meanings is adjectival (from the town of Buffalo). –  FumbleFingers Jul 25 '11 at 17:06
    
@picakhu: I just followed your link after posting my comment! Interesting that your blogger chose pike and perch as the archetypal pair of "fish that each other fish, including both the other in the pair, and their own species". I remember feeling slightly queasy as a boy when someone wanted to use the small 'jackpike' I'd just caught as 'livebait' for a much larger pike he believed was in the same lake. –  FumbleFingers Jul 25 '11 at 17:13

I don't know if you would say it makes sense as a sentence - it does make sense in terms of what fish eat - see http://www.tumblr.com/tagged/nesting+and+recursion

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So, in essence, that sentence can have many many meanings? –  picakhu Jul 25 '11 at 16:42

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