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The Shortest Sentence In the World

What is the shortest sentence in the English language?

Jelly donuts (ice cream is better)

The typical answer to this is “I am,” but some argue that it’s not a complete sentence. However, if someone asked a man named Rupert if he was Rupert, he could reply, “I am” and it would make a complete sentence in my book.

But that’s not the whole answer. There is an even shorter sentence using an imperative with an implied subject (how’s that for an English terminology-filled sentence?) With “Go,” the “you” is implied. For example, if your wife wanted you to go with her to pick up some donuts and you were busy, she might say, “I really want to get some donuts, I’m starving!” and you might reply, “Go!” The implication being you never wanted to get donuts in the first place because you like ice cream more anyway and if you’re busy you’re probably doing something worthwhile and important and can’t be disturbed for such trivial matters as acquiring sweet pastries with holes in them, no matter how much of a waste of time your wife says your pursuits are. In short, “Go” is the shortest sentence in the English language that also has the longest implied meaning. Do you want to get get some ice cream? Go!

Ava pointed out in the comments that No is another viable alternative.

Posted in Brain Teasers


60 Comments on "The Shortest Sentence In the World"

ujla says
February 13, 2016 @ 08:40

World’s smallest sentence is ‘DO’

Oliver says
March 11, 2016 @ 00:00

Since “I am” is a sentence ( I being the subject, am being the predicate), would “I’m” be a sentence?

7 says
March 29, 2016 @ 16:42

‘I?’ Is the shortest because u could ask “do u no the letter I?” And they could say “I?” Then the other person replys with “yes, I”

Andrew says
May 5, 2016 @ 16:42

Isn’t it “Hi”?

KARAN.M.K says
May 22, 2016 @ 01:00

I can’t be a sentence.There is no verb.Go and Do can be the shortest sentences with the subject you is implied.

Saurabh goel says
June 22, 2016 @ 02:20


June 25, 2016 @ 07:27

Just because it is a response does not make it a full sentence if we were saying that responses are full sentences then someone could say “do you want cake” if I replied yes this would be the same as replying I am to the example given the full sentence would be “yes i am Rupert”

EngProf says
September 16, 2016 @ 13:17

I would agree that “I AM” is indeed a short sentence…

THEREFORE… Since I AM can be trimmed down to a single contraction, I would suppose the world’s shortest is none other than: “I’m.”

FTHRW8 says
November 3, 2016 @ 02:04

I was thinking ‘I am’ too. Then I thought it might be ‘I’m me’ or ‘I am me’. I think ‘I do’ might also work.

John says
January 7, 2017 @ 15:42

I am I do

KATE says
January 24, 2017 @ 06:34

CORREcT ANSWERPM me aon fb Kate L. Yamson if you know it
PLEASE this is an assignment
1/25/2016 should it be passed

James C says
March 19, 2017 @ 20:58

The shortest sentence for the longest sentence is LIFE.

Owl Eagle says
April 17, 2017 @ 18:59

I think the shortest sentence is I am

Angela says
July 29, 2017 @ 05:33

God told you already. I am!!!

some random person says
August 6, 2017 @ 15:37

btw, although I am and I go are both three letters, I am is considered shorter because it is “before” I do alphabetically (I learned this in English class at some point). Then I randomly thought up, what about I’m??? Isn’t that the shortest sentence??

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