Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Oldest Written Joke

As is my daily practice, I checked out “Believe It Or Not” in the newspaper and saw where “the oldest joke ever written down was about marriage – carved in 1,900 BC by a Sumerian.”

I bet he slept on their equivalent of the couch for a long time.

This sounds like something my brother would tell: "Something which has never occurred since time immemorial; a young woman did not fart in her husband's lap."

Egyptians poked fun at pharaoh King Snofru back in 1,600 BC with this cracker: "How do you entertain a bored pharaoh? You sail a boatload of young women dressed only in fishing nets down the Nile and urge the pharaoh to go catch a fish."

Now we go to the Anglo-Saxons stand-up comics, back in the 10th century, with this bit of off-color humor: "What hangs at a man's thigh and wants to poke the hole that it's often poked before? Answer: A key."


These showed up on various Internet sites a few months ago, which is probably where Believe It Or Not found the material. It just illustrates a principle that a cartoonist once told me: “There’s nothing like a good fart joke.”