World's Oldest Joke Uncovered by Boffins
It has today been revealed that academics have discovered the world's oldest joke. It is 1,000 years old and was unearthed at Exeter Cathedral in a book of 10th Century Anglo-Saxon poetry.
They found the wry observation in the Codex Exoniensis, a 10th century book of Anglo-Saxon poetry held at Exeter Cathedral.
It reads: “What hangs at a man’s thigh and wants to poke the hole that it’s often poked before?’ Answer: A key.”
Scouring ancient texts, researchers from Wolverhampton University found the jokes laid down in delicate manuscripts and carved into stone tablets up to three thousand years old.
Dr Paul MacDonald, a comic novelist and lecturer in creative writing, said ancient civilizations laughed about much the same things as we do today.
He said jokes ancient and modern shared “a willingness to deal with taboos and a degree of rebellion.”