"Words are cheap.The biggest thing you can say is ‘elephant’"

By Charlie chaplin

  • It's a joke. Which part were you confused about?
    – Dan Getz
    Jul 11, 2023 at 16:15
  • @DanGetz I want to know the connection between the word elephant and words.
    – Sam
    Jul 11, 2023 at 16:28
  • @DanGetz I want to know the implied meaning of the sentence?
    – Sam
    Jul 11, 2023 at 16:32
  • 1
    That's the thing about jokes; few of them survive an explanation. Jul 11, 2023 at 16:40
  • 3
    Puts me in mind of The longest word you can say is smiles (because there's a mile between the first and last letters). Jul 11, 2023 at 17:26

1 Answer 1


It's a joke, based on misdirection. It starts off "Words are cheap", meaning words don't have much value. Then it starts to say "The biggest thing you can say is", and someone might think they're talking about concepts that can be expressed, how words can't express everything someone might want to say. But instead, he says "elephants". Well, elephants are big, but not in their concept, they're just simply large animals. So he was just being silly. The abrupt change from thinking you're hearing something philosophically meaningful to realizing it's just a silly little joke is what's funny about it.

He also might have intended to joke about long vs short words, and "elephant" is not a very long word.

  • Can you say using simple English? (So that I can understand more better)
    – Sam
    Jul 13, 2023 at 14:41

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .