Sunday, August 03, 2008

World's Oldest Jokes

A British website claims to have found the 10 Oldest Jokes. These are the jokes from which all others have descended. The oldest, it seems, is a fart joke.
1. Something which has never occurred since time immemorial: a young woman
did not fart in her husband's lap (1900 BC – 1600 BC Sumerian Proverb Collection

Somehow, I find that to be moderately reassuring. There are at least two on the list with which we are all familiar.
5. Odysseus tells the Cyclops that his real name is nobody. When
Odysseus instructs his men to attack the Cyclops, the Cyclops shouts: "Help,
nobody is attacking me!" No one comes to help. (Homer. The Odyssey 800 BC)

6. Question: What animal walks on four feet in the morning, two at noon
and three at evening? Answer: Man. He goes on all fours as a baby, on two feet
as a man and uses a cane in old age (Appears in Oedipus Tyrannus and first
performed in 429 BC)

There was one, "Yo Mama," that might have been called out during The Dozens in Philadelphia last night.
8. Augustus was touring his Empire and noticed a man in the crowd who bore a
striking resemblance to himself. Intrigued he asked: "Was your mother at one
time in service at the Palace?" "No your Highness," he replied, "but my father
was." (Credited to the Emporer Augustus 63 BC – 29 AD)

But there was one joke on the list which I found surprisingly relevant to today.
4. A woman who was blind in one eye has been married to a man for 20
years. When he found another woman he said to her, "I shall divorce you because
you are said to be blind in one eye." And she answered him: "Oh, John McCain,
have you just discovered that after 20 years of marriage!?" (Egyptian circa 1100

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