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"Swish and flick, remember, swish and flick. And saying the magic words properly is very important, too — never forget Wizard Baruffio, who said 's' instead of 'f' and found himself on the floor with a buffalo on his chest."
Filius Flitwick[src]

A buffalo is a beasty brown-haired animal with horns. They are very big, robust and unfriendly to humans.

Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry Charms Master and Professor Filius Flitwick told his first year class in 1991 that a wizard named Baruffio once mispronounced f as s and he and his wife ended with a buffalo on top of them.

Behind the scenes

"N'oubliez jamais le sorcier Baruffio qui avait un défaut de prononciation et dont la femme s'est retrouvée avec un bison sur les épaules au lieu d'un vison."
Filius Flitwick (French)[src]
  • In the French translation of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone Baruffio's incident with a buffalo is slightly different. It introduces another character: Baruffio's wife. "Remember wizard Baruffio who had a speech impediment and whose wife was left with a buffalo on her shoulders instead of a mink".). The translator, Jean-François Ménard, plays with the alliteration "bison"/"vison" ("buffalo"/"mink"). As it is usually women who wear furs, the introduction of a female character was necessary.


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