The World's Oldest Doctor Joke?

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A man goes to the doctor and says, "Every morning when I wake up, I feel dizzy for half an hour, then I feel fine."

The doctor replies, "So get up a half hour later!"

If you're groaning now, thinking about what an old joke that is, you might be surprised to find out just how old. That joke--and several hundred others, some about doctors--is included in Philogelos, the oldest existing collection of jokes in the world. The collection is written in ancient Greek and dates from about the 4th century A.D. But because it makes reference to much older events, Philogelos is thought to be almost two thousand years old.

Reading through the humor, you can almost picture the ancient Greek counterpart of Rodney Dangerfield entertaining the crowds. In fact, some of the jokes seem to have survived the two thousand years nearly intact, and one is even considered an ancestor of the famous Monty Python "Dead Parrot" sketch.

Here's one more about physicians:

A local idiot sees his doctor approaching, and quickly hides.

"Why are you hiding?" his companion asks.

The idiot answers, "It's been so long since I've been sick, I'm embarrassed to face him!"

Go ahead, groan.

Thinkstock

A man goes to the doctor and says, "Every morning when I wake up, I feel dizzy for half an hour, then I feel fine."

The doctor replies, "So get up a half hour later!"

If you're groaning now, thinking about what an old joke that is, you might be surprised to find out just how old. That joke--and several hundred others, some about doctors--is included in Philogelos, the oldest existing collection of jokes in the world. The collection is written in ancient Greek and dates from about the 4th century A.D. But because it makes reference to much older events, Philogelos is thought to be almost two thousand years old.

Reading through the humor, you can almost picture the ancient Greek counterpart of Rodney Dangerfield entertaining the crowds. In fact, some of the jokes seem to have survived the two thousand years nearly intact, and one is even considered an ancestor of the famous Monty Python "Dead Parrot" sketch.

Here's one more about physicians:

A local idiot sees his doctor approaching, and quickly hides.

"Why are you hiding?" his companion asks.

The idiot answers, "It's been so long since I've been sick, I'm embarrassed to face him!"

Go ahead, groan.