Basic+ Word of the Day: joke

joke (noun, verb) past tense: joked LISTEN

That's a funny joke.

A joke is a short and funny story that you tell someone to make them laugh.

  • He likes telling jokes to his colleagues.

A joke is something ridiculous that happens, or someone ridiculous.

  • That politician is a joke.
  • The exam was a joke. We didn't practice those problems in class.

When nobody pays attention to something or nobody takes it seriously, we can say that that thing is a joke.

  • That law is a joke and nobody respects it.

If someone is joking, it means that they say something in a fun and playful way.

  • He was only joking; it was not serious.

Common uses

When someone say, “No joke,” they mean ‘it is something serious.’ For example: “That hurricane was no joke.”

Related words

A joker is ‘a playing card that may be used as a wild card (=any other card) in many card games.’

In pop culture

Watch Jack Nicholson play the Joker in this 1989 version of Batman. Many other actors have played that role in other films. Who is your favorite Joker?

There are other meanings of joke.

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