Oh what pun! — Read carefully to get the punch line

Puns are just the opposite of the old saying about children.

A pun is best appreciated when it is both seen and heard.

“A small boy rises to remark that most doughnuts come from Greece,” The Morning Star of Glens Falls reported on Dec. 6, 1888.

“Some grocery scales never learn the error of their weighs,” The Morning Star punned on Dec. 13, 1888.

It’s not against the law to get exercise.

“If you should happen to take a walk, it is not necessary to return it,” The Morning Star punned on Dec.13, 1888.

In fact, you can take a second walk the next day. — They’re small.

In some instances, noticing the spelling is important to the punch line.

“If there is anything in a name, Sioux City should be a good place for lawyers, The Morning Star punned on Dec, 3, 1888

“Musical query — If it takes four beets to fill a measure, how many turnips will it take?” The Commercial Advertiser of Hudson Falls asked on Feb. 11, 1880.

Speaking of vegetables, this “Gardening for the ladies” multi-part pun was published in the same issue.

“Make up your beds early in the morning. Sow buttons on your husband’s shirt. Protect the young and tender branches of your family. Plant a smile of good temper in your face. And carefully root out all angry feelings.”

I don’t like to disparage the institution of marriage, but this pun from the March 10, 1880 Commercial Advertiser was too clever to resist.

“Brown says that a married man sometimes finds himself to be an April fool soon after the Wedding March.”

Here is a pun for college girls.

“A Vassar girl asked by her teacher what kind of a noun ‘kiss’ was replied that it was both common and proper,” The Morning Star punned on Dec. 21, 1888.

Based on my many years of experience working in diners, I can vouch for this pun.

“Rest is not always to be found in a restaurant,” The Morning Star punned on Dec. 3, 1888.

I leave off with a philosophical pun worth pondering — published March 10, 1880 in The Commercial Advertiser.

“Scandal, like the Nile, is fed by innumerable streams, but it is extremely difficult to trace it to its source.”

Click here to read the most recent previous Oh what pun! post.

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Maury Thompson

Freelance history writer and documentary film producer from Ticonderoga, NY