What words make you laugh?

Language is a deep and complicated matter- especially the English language with its nonsensical grammar rules and baffling idioms that are the bane of many non-native speakers’ lives. Sometimes though, the study of the English language can be thoroughly humorous particularly when researching to find the funniest English word. In order to find out, the University of Warwick asked 821 participants to rank the humour of 5000 randomly selected words from 1-5 with 5 being extremely funny and 1 being not funny at all. The results found that the funniest and least funny word differed depending on age and gender.

Men had a tendency to find rude words like bondage and orgy more humorous while women weren’t so impressed. In order, here are the words that males tend to find the most humorous, complete with a calculation of the difference between the score given to the word by men and women: Bondage (1.55), Birthmark (1.47), Orgy (1.47), Brand (1.46), Chauffeur (1.35), Doze (1.34), Buzzard (1.34), Czar (1.30), Weld (1.29), Prod (1.27), Corn (1.27), and Raccoon (1.26).

The women’s words were a little more varied: Giggle (1.92),┬áBeast (1.61),┬áCircus (1.6), Grand (1.5), Juju (1.45), Humbug (1.38), Slicker (1.38), Sweat (1.38), Ennui (1.36), Holder (1.35), and Momma (1.35).

The words that had the lowest difference in humour ratings between men and women were as follows:

Chug, Fluff, Scrotum, Jabber, Joke, Buttocks, Boon, Yank, Tinker, and Prance.

Older people found words like Caddie, Birthright, Squint, Jingle, Burlesque, Bulkhead, Limey, Pixie, Pong, Willow, Housewife, and Bathing the funniest.

Younger participants found these words funniest: Goatee, Reform, Joint, Germ, Hunchback, Frock, Rating, Squaw, Filth, Collie, Squabble, and Gangster.

Overall, across all ages and both genders, these (placed in order) were the funniest words:

Booty, Tit, Booby, Hooter, Nitwit, Twit, Waddle, Tinkle, Bebop, Egghead, Ass, and Twerp.

The test also found the least humorous words in English. Participants gave these words the lowest scores:

Rape, Torture, Torment, Gunshot, Death, Nightmare, War, Trauma, Rapist, Distrust, Deathbed, and Pain.

So there you have it, “booty” is the funniest word in the English language.