Word of the Day: pun

 
 
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Word of the Day
 
February 26, 2016
 
pun (noun, verb)
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A pun is a kind of joke.
 
A pun is a joke made with words that have multiple meanings or with words which have the same sounds but different meanings. As a verb, to pun means 'to make a pun.'

 

Example sentences

 

Last night Uncle Joe told a pun: "Did you hear about the man who had his whole left side amputated? He's all right now!"
We all think he should be a stand-up comedian; he's constantly punning and he's good at it!

 

Multi-word forms
 
no pun intended: This is a very common phrase we use when someone accidentally makes a pun. For example, if you are arguing with your office manager and say "The point is, we need to buy more pens!" you might then say "No pun intended." (The end of the pen is a point, so that could be considered a pun.)
 
Did you know?
 
Shakespeare was a fan of puns and used lots of them in his plays. You can say play on words instead of pun, but pun is a very common word among native speakers, so it's worth remembering.
 
Other forms
 
punster (noun): someone who makes puns
 
Origin
 
Pun dates back to the mid-17th century. Its origins are uncertain, but it may have come from a dialect variant of pound, meaning 'to strike repeatedly,' which suggests that the words were being mistreated.
 
 
 
 
 
Pun in other languages
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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