10 Funniest Words In The English Language
There are approximately seven thousand languages used in the world today, with most of them existing in Asia and Africa. Still, like water, English is the universal language of the world. Out of more than one hundred seventy-thousand words in the English language, there are bound to be words that would sound humorous, would be fun to say over and over, and would just be plain entertaining. Here are ten of the funniest words in the world. Some words in the list are uncommon, used in an era so old that automobiles were not yet invented. Some words are pretty common, regular words used in everyday conversation. And most words here just, well, sound really funny. So, here we go, try not to laugh while reading.
verb ske·dad·dle \ ski-ˈda-dᵊl \
“Let’s skedaddle! Let’s go!”
This word is defined as to run away, scram or to flee in panic.
Skedaddle is one of the most common and famous words in this list. It’s also one of the funniest here. Let’s take a step back and skedaddle for a minute. To trace the history of the word, it requires skedaddling back to the historic American Civil War. Historians claim the word was used more than once in written accounts during the war. Incidentally, they used skedaddle to describe a platoon or a regiment retreating quickly or fleeing. In strict military lingo, the word skedaddle has an undesirable undertone of cowardice.
There is also the British word, scaddle, meaning to run off in a fright or to spill. Several Middle English, Norse, Old English, and Greek variations mean harmful or scatter. This word also has been used numerous times in action and comedy films, in a manner that is playful and comical. Most often the protagonist is shouting out to his mates, ‘Let’s skedaddle!’ Wherever this word originates from, skedaddle is one funny word for sure! What are we waiting for? Let’s skedaddle onto the next word in the list!
verb dis·com·bob·u·late \ ˌdis-kəm-ˈbä-b(y)ə-ˌlāt \
“Don’t try to discombobulate me with your fancy Harvard words!” “I don’t understand, it’s discombobulating!” “I… am… discombobulated.”
This word is defined as upset, distraught or confused; discombobulated or discombobulating.
There is no written record of the origin of the word discombobulate. It is believed to have appeared in some written works in the United States as early as the 1800s and believed to have been derived from the words discompose or discomfit. It most definitely is not derived from the root word combobulate, because combobulate is not a word. It’s not one of those words like disrespect or displace. It’s more like the words disdain and discuss.
So, if one is worthy of consideration, they then will be dained. And if one was fired from their job and are hired again, did they get placed or re-placed? It is not true for both. Just like it is incorrect to say that when one is no longer confused, they are now combobulated. Some words require further explanation, but that is beside the point. The point is that discombobulated is a fun word, and that one should say it as often as one can! Here’s to hoping no one was discombobulated with what they just read here, so let’s move on!
noun bum·ber·shoot \ ˈbəm-bər-ˌshüt \
“Under my bumbershoot, ershoot, ershoot, shoot, shoot, shoot.” It’s still quite catchy!
This word is defined as umbrella; a collapsible shade used as protection from weather like sun and rain, consists of fabric stretched over hinged spokes radiating from a central rod. It is also defined as a device or contraption one uses when one wants to go outside to frolic, dance and sing in the rain.
This word definitely sounds British. Read this with your best James Bond accent: “Bollocks! I left my bumbershoot in the tube!” Bumbershoot is actually an American, not British, slang for umbrella. The slang term for umbrella in the United Kingdom is brolly.
Much like discombobulate, bumbershoot is another word for which the origin is unclear. But intelligent speculation points to a rather entertaining retort. The first part, bumber, could have come from the first part of the word umbrella, umbre-; and the second part, -shoot, from the last part of the word parachute, -chute. Do you get it? Because an umbrella kind of looks like a small handheld parachute. Yeah, you get it! Just don’t try to jump out of a perfectly good airplane with nothing but a bumbershoot with you.
noun tit·mouse \ ˈtit-ˌmau̇s \
“Look! Up in the sky! It’s a bird! It’s a plane! No, it’s a titmouse!”
This word is defined as a small North American oscine bird (genus Baeolophus of the family Paridae) which is a distant cousin to the chickadee. The titmouse has a small bill and a long tail, it is also called the tufted titmouse.
Animals can look quite funny sometimes. Take a look at the tarsier and the axolotl. Animal names can be quite funny too. Enter the titmouse. A titmouse looks nothing like a mouse. It most definitely does not look like, or in any way perks up or is shaped like a tit. And forget about two tits, or three! The bird titmouse does not look anything at all like its name.
Titmouse comes from the words, tit, meaning something small; and some variation of the word mouse. From Old English, māse; from German, meise; from Proto-Germanic, maison; all words mean little or tiny. The Anglo-Saxon word mouse meant a small bird as well. Titmouses (not titmice) are common birds in the eastern side of the Great Plains and some parts of southern Ontario, Canada. If you are around those areas, you might have already laid eyes on a titmouse.
noun nip·ple \ ˈni-pəl \
“My nipples, they hurt!” “Why do men have nipples?” “Ouch! You flicked my nipple!”
This word is defined as the protuberance of the mammary gland or glands upon which in the female, lactiferous ducts open and from which milk is drawn; an artificial teat through which a bottle-fed infant nurses.
Booty is actually the word voted in some psychological and scientific researches and studies as the funniest word in the English language. Together with hooters, boobies and tits – nipple is as equally funny. All slang for the same thing. This word was mentioned in a cast and crew interview of the famous TV hit show loved by many fans all over the world – Friends. Actors David Schwimmer, who played the character Ross and Matthew Perry, who played the character Chandler, together with the show’s creators, Marta Kauffman and David Crane, all said in the interview that their live audiences always laughed whenever they heard the word nipple.
Nipple may be a funny word that’s a little bit naughty and research showed it as a word funnier to men than to women. But it’s not really naughty, it’s just normal. It’s part of our anatomy. We all have nipples. Heck, we even have two of them. Some people even have third nipples! Friends fanatics know what this means, wink wink!
noun ma·lar·key \ mə-ˈlär-kē \
“Stop this malarkey!” “That’s a bunch of malarkey!” “He’s full of malarkey!”
This word is defined as insincere or foolish talk.
This word just rolls right off the tongue, doesn’t it? Written proof dates back to 1922, but no one really knows where the word came from. Spellings of the word varied as well, malachy, mullarkey, and malaky. The word appeared first in cartoons created by cartoonist Thomas Aloysius Dorgan, who incidentally was Irish American. Well, let’s just ask the Malarkeys. The Malarkeys are of Irish descent, but there is no Irish explanation to the origin of the word. There is one good source, though. Maybe the Malarkeys were well known for telling tall tales.
The Greek word, malakia, means idiocy or stupidity. This makes sense since the meaning of malarkey today is nonsense or rubbish. If you are a fan of the HBO award-winning miniseries Band of Brothers you might remember a character there named Donald Malarkey. Technical Sergeant Malarkey was a WWII war hero portrayed by actor Scott Grimes.
Malarkey is one fun word to say, though. Its origins may be unknown and you may not remember Donald Malarkey, but just say the word five times fast and you’d find it funny as well.
noun brou·ha·ha \ ˈbrü-ˌhä-ˌhä \
“Brouhaha! Brouhaha! Brouhaha!” It’s just fun to say it more than once!
This word is defined as hubbub, commotion, or uproar.
Brouhaha! It kind of sounds like a college cheer. Brouhaha! It sounds more like a mysterious spell uttered three times at the end of an enchantment that grants eternal or spring-break long happiness. The word actually traces back to an anti-semitic French word of the same spelling and means cry of the devil disguised as clergy. Trace back the French word and the result will be a Hebrew word, baruch atah, which means blessed be the one who comes.
The old story goes that the French would pass by these Hebrew places of worship, or synagogues, at night and hear the words or prayers coming from the building and to them (the French) the Hebrew words were just loud and confusing, and all sounded like a big mess. Well, to make a bigger mess of this funny word, brouhaha actually also means hullabaloo. Now, what the heck is a hullabaloo?!? Brouhaha! It sounds like what one would say it at the end of a speech to prove a point or to bring the hammer down. Brouhaha!
adjective wab·bit \ ˈwæbɪt \
“I’m not okay, I feel a bit wabbit.”
This word is defined as weary; exhausted.
Imagine a forest, then a clearing. A hunter is walking quietly with his rifle, cocked and ready to fire. He sees a rabbit, fires upon it, but misses badly. The hunter then runs toward the direction the rabbit retreats to. The hunter sees no rabbit, he looks around and there is not a single rabbit. He clears his throat, tilts his head a little bit sideways and upwards, and then shouts….. Come back here wabbit!
Unfortunately, this word does not exactly mean the cute and cuddly animal, oryctolagus cuniculus, or the rabbit. That was just Elmer Fudd’s adorable personality and speech impediment, apparently. Wabbit means exhausted, tired, or weary. It is actually a Scottish word that probably comes from an older word, wobart, which means feeble or withered. Origins of these words are not well-documented and are almost non-existent. Some dictionaries don’t even have wabbit in their list. But it is one funny word! Perhaps credit Warner Brothers, Bugs Bunny, Elmer Fudd, and the whole ACME gang as well. Wait, is it wabbit season already?
verb gig·gle \ ˈgi-gəl \
“No matter how hard they try, the girls just can’t stop giggling.” “What?! What are you giggling about?”
This word is defined as laughing with continual tiny, little catches of the breath; or to utter with a giggle.
Remember the word booty? Giggle is the counterpart of it. This word scored very high among women as one of the funniest words in the English language according to scientific research conducted to identify the funniest words in the English language. True enough, a girl cannot help but giggle after saying the word, if only for a little bit. The origin of the word giggle is unknown, but it can be traced back to Middle English.
The Old or dialectal English word, gig, means to creak. It came from the Middle English word, gigen, meaning to make a creaking sound. It can also be attributed to another form of the Middle English word, gigge or gige, which means a squeaking sound.
Giggle is a word that should definitely be on this list. It means what this list represents, it’s funny! Let’s have some more words like giggle in these kinds of lists, not like those dirty and naughty words those dirty and naughty boys like more!
noun she·nan·i·gan \ shə-ˈna-ni-gən \
“I’ve had just about enough of your shenanigans! You hooligans!”
This word is defined as some tricky or questionable conduct or practices; mischievous or high-spirited acts or activities; a deceitful trick, especially used for an underhanded purpose.
Perhaps one of the funniest words in this list, shenanigans is a word that anyone could learn to love. It is subtle, it is discreet. It is simple, it is deep. Does this all sound like a shenanigan? That’s the beauty of the word! You can call someone out and they will not be offended. Just as long as you use the word shenanigan in the sentence. What a lovely and funny word! Where did it come from?
It has traces of Irish, Spanish, and French origins. The word shenanigan could have derived from any of the following words. The Irish word, sionnachuighim, meaning ‘I play the fox.’ The Spanish word, charade, which means trick or deceit. And the French word, ces manigances, meaning these fraudulent schemes. They all sound legitimate and could be all true, but these are all speculation as there is no written and exact proof of the origin of the word. Nonetheless, the word shenanigan is still one of the funniest words in the world!