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Mime vs. Clown: Know the Difference

Shumaila Saeed
By Shumaila Saeed || Updated on December 25, 2023
A mime performs silent, exaggerated gestures to tell a story, while a clown uses costumes, makeup, and humor for entertainment, often with speech.
Mime vs. Clown

Key Differences

Mimes focus on silent storytelling through body movement and facial expressions. Clowns, however, engage in physical comedy often accompanied by verbal interaction and sound effects.
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Nov 30, 2023
The art of mime is characterized by silence and the illusion of objects or walls. In contrast, clowns are known for their colorful costumes, makeup, and often noisy, slapstick comedy.
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Mimes typically perform in black and white attire, emphasizing expressiveness without words. Clowns, on the other hand, use a wide range of props, colorful attire, and exaggerated facial expressions.
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In mime, the performer often portrays a range of emotions and scenarios through physical actions alone. Clowns frequently interact with their audience, incorporating jokes, gags, and sometimes balloon animals or magic tricks.
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The mime artist relies heavily on the audience's imagination to fill in the details of the performance. Conversely, clowns often create a more direct and overt form of entertainment, engaging audiences with clear, humorous antics.
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Comparison Chart

Primary Mode of Communication

Silent, body language
Verbal and physical comedy
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Typical Attire

Black and white, minimalistic
Colorful costumes and makeup
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Performance Style

Subtle, expressive
Loud, slapstick
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Interaction with Audience

Limited, relies on imagination
Direct, often interactive
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Use of Props

Imaginary, mimed
Real, varied props
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Mime and Clown Definitions

Mime

A performer who uses gestures and body movements to tell a story without words.
The mime captivated the audience with a performance of being trapped in an invisible box.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 24, 2023

Clown

A performer who uses jokes, gags, and sometimes magic tricks to entertain.
The clown pulled a never-ending handkerchief from his pocket, amusing the crowd.
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Nov 24, 2023

Mime

An artist skilled in expressing feelings or actions silently.
The mime depicted a strong wind with his body leaning and swaying dramatically.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 24, 2023

Clown

A performer known for humorous acts, colorful attire, and makeup.
The clown juggled balls while making funny faces at the children.
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Nov 24, 2023

Mime

A performer who creates illusions of objects and scenarios through bodily movements.
The mime skillfully mimed climbing a ladder, eliciting laughter from the crowd.
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Nov 24, 2023
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Clown

An entertainer who engages in slapstick comedy and physical humor.
The clown slipped on a banana peel, sending the audience into fits of laughter.
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Nov 24, 2023

Mime

A communications protocol that allows for the transmission of data in many forms, such as audio, binary, or video.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Clown

A buffoon or jester who entertains by jokes, antics, and tricks in a circus, play, or other presentation.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Mime

A form of ancient Greek and Roman theatrical entertainment in which familiar characters and situations were farcically portrayed on stage, often with coarse dialogue and ludicrous actions.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Clown

One who jokes and plays tricks.
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Oct 19, 2023

Mime

A performance of or dialogue for such an entertainment.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Clown

A coarse, rude, vulgar person; a boor.
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Oct 19, 2023

Mime

A performer in a mime.
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Oct 19, 2023

Clown

A peasant; a rustic.
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Oct 19, 2023

Mime

A modern performer who specializes in comic mimicry.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Clown

To behave like a buffoon or jester.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Mime

The art of portraying characters and acting out situations or a narrative by gestures and body movement without the use of words; pantomime.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Clown

To perform as a buffoon or jester.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Mime

A performance of pantomime.
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Oct 19, 2023

Clown

To krump, especially in clown makeup.
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Oct 19, 2023

Mime

An actor or actress skilled in pantomime.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Clown

A slapstick performance artist often associated with a circus and usually characterized by bright, oversized clothing, a red nose, face paint, and a brightly colored wig.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Mime

To ridicule by imitation; mimic.
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Oct 19, 2023

Clown

A person who acts in a silly fashion.
He was regarded as the clown of the school, always playing pranks.
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Oct 19, 2023

Mime

To act out with gestures and body movement.
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Oct 19, 2023

Clown

A stupid or badly-behaved person.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Mime

To act as a mimic.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Clown

(obsolete) A man of coarse nature and manners; an awkward fellow; an illbred person; a boor.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Mime

To portray characters and situations by gesture and body movement.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Clown

(obsolete) One who works upon the soil; a rustic; a churl; a yokel.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Mime

A form of acting without words; pantomime.
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Oct 19, 2023

Clown

A clownfish.
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Oct 19, 2023

Mime

A pantomime actor.
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Oct 19, 2023

Clown

To act in a silly or playful fashion.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Mime

A classical theatrical entertainment in the form of farce.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Clown

To ridicule.
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Oct 19, 2023

Mime

A performer of such a farce.
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Oct 19, 2023

Clown

A man of coarse nature and manners; an awkward fellow; an ill-bred person; a boor.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Mime

A person who mimics others in a comical manner.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Clown

One who works upon the soil; a rustic; a churl.
The clown, the child of nature, without guile.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Mime

Any of various papilionid butterflies of the genus Chilasa or Papilio, that mimic other species in appearance.
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Oct 19, 2023

Clown

The fool or buffoon in a play, circus, etc.
The clown shall make those laugh whose lungs are tickle o'the sere.
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Oct 19, 2023

Mime

A unit of imitation in the theory of symbiosism.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Clown

To act as a clown; - with it.
Beshrew me, he clowns it properly indeed.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Mime

To mimic.
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Oct 19, 2023

Clown

A rude or vulgar fool
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Mime

(intransitive) To act without words.
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Oct 19, 2023

Clown

A person who amuses others by ridiculous behavior
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Oct 19, 2023

Mime

To represent an action or object through gesture, without the use of sound.
In this game, you're given a word, which you have to mime to the others in the group.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Clown

Act as or like a clown
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Oct 19, 2023

Mime

A kind of drama in which real persons and events were generally represented in a ridiculous manner; an ancient Greek or Roman form of farce.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Clown

A comic character in a circus or children's entertainment, often with exaggerated features.
The clown made balloon animals, much to the delight of the kids.
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Nov 24, 2023

Mime

An actor in such representations.
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Oct 19, 2023

Clown

An entertainer who often interacts with the audience using comedy and props.
The clown engaged the audience with a comedic routine involving a squeaky horn.
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Nov 24, 2023

Mime

The art of representing actions, events, situations, or stories solely by gestures and body movements, without speaking; pantomime{3}.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Mime

An actor who performs or specializes in mime{3}; an actor who communicates entirely by gesture and facial expression; a pantomime{2}; a pantomimist; a mimer.
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Shumaila Saeed
Oct 19, 2023

Mime

A mimic.
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Mime

To mimic.
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Mime

An actor who communicates entirely by gesture and facial expression
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Mime

A performance using gestures and body movements without words
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Mime

Imitate (a person, a manner, etc.), especially for satirical effect;
The actor mimicked the President very accurately
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Oct 19, 2023

Mime

Act out without words but with gestures and bodily movements only;
The acting students mimed eating an apple
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Oct 19, 2023

Mime

An entertainer who communicates through exaggerated facial expressions and gestures.
The mime's expression of surprise was so exaggerated that the audience burst into laughter.
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Nov 24, 2023

Mime

A silent artist who relies on physical expression for storytelling.
The mime's portrayal of walking against a strong wind was both humorous and impressive.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 24, 2023

Repeatedly Asked Queries

Do clowns always wear makeup?

Most clowns wear colorful makeup as part of their characteristic look.
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Nov 30, 2023

Are all mimes silent?

Traditional mime involves silent performance, but some modern mimes may incorporate sound.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 30, 2023

Is mime an ancient art form?

Yes, mime has historical roots in ancient Greek and Roman theater.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 30, 2023

Is mime limited to street performance?

No, mime can be performed on stage, in theaters, and various other venues.
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Nov 30, 2023

How do mimes express emotions?

Mimes express emotions through facial expressions and body language.
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Nov 30, 2023

Are clowns always part of a circus?

No, clowns perform in various settings, including circuses, parties, and theaters.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 30, 2023

What is the main focus of a mime?

A mime focuses on silent storytelling through gestures and body movements.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 30, 2023

Can mimes use props in their performance?

Mimes typically use imaginary props created through their gestures.
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Nov 30, 2023

Do clowns only perform for children?

No, clowns entertain audiences of all ages with their humor.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 30, 2023

Can clowns be part of theatrical productions?

Yes, clowns often appear in plays and theatrical performances.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 30, 2023

Can mime be considered a form of dance?

Mime shares similarities with dance through its use of movement, but it is distinct in its focus on storytelling.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 30, 2023

Are clowns always associated with circuses?

Clowns are commonly associated with circuses but also perform in other contexts.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 30, 2023

Can clowns be seen in street performances?

Yes, clowns can perform in street settings, festivals, and fairs.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 30, 2023

Do mimes always wear black and white?

While black and white is traditional, some mimes may use different costumes.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 30, 2023

Are clowns always funny?

While humor is a key aspect, some clowns may have more nuanced performances.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 30, 2023

Do clowns use verbal communication?

Yes, many clowns use speech and sound effects as part of their act.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 30, 2023

How do audiences respond to mime?

Audience responses to mime depend on the skill of the performer and the story being told.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 30, 2023

What skills are important for a clown?

A clown needs skills in comedy, physical humor, and often juggling or magic.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 30, 2023

What is the typical attire for a clown?

Typical clown attire includes colorful costumes, oversized shoes, and often a wig.
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Shumaila Saeed
Nov 30, 2023

Is mime an improvisational art?

Mime can be both improvisational and scripted, depending on the performance.
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Nov 30, 2023

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About Author
Shumaila Saeed
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Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed, an expert content creator with 6 years of experience, specializes in distilling complex topics into easily digestible comparisons, shining a light on the nuances that both inform and educate readers with clarity and accuracy.

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