First known joke?

Nov 2016
968
Germany
#12
From Roman times:

A child goes swimming in the sea and almost drowns. He returns to his mother in a shocked state and says: "Next time I'll go swimming again only when I can."

+++

A man asks his wife, "What shall we do? Eat or sleep together?"

Says the woman:

"You can choose. But we don't have anything left to eat."

+++

This one is not really funny, but illustrates the cruel Roman custom that fathers had the right to kill their newborn child. The reasons he could claim were that he did not like the sex of the child or that he doubted his fatherhood.

A Roman impregnated his slave girl. His father suggests to him to kill the newborn. Says the Roman:

"Kill your own children first, then you can tell me to kill mine."
 
Nov 2016
968
Germany
#15
a mouse has become Pharaoh and the cats are his subjects
The mouse does not represent the Pharaoh, but his chief administrative officer, the Vizier (mentioned by me in the current thread about Egypt). The animal was elevated to this office by the Pharaoh in a fable, but did his job so badly that all mice were banished to the underground from then on.

The Mouse as Vizier
 
Last edited:
Sep 2014
929
Texas
#16
Some ancient cave woman standing next to her cave daughter, looked at the family dog and said "her end stinks" My mother thought that was a hysterical play off of the word instincts....don't tell me someone a gazzillion years ago didn't tell the same bad joke.