verb (used with object)
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Idioms for humor
Origin of humor
synonym study for humor
OTHER WORDS FROM humor
Words nearby humor
What is a basic definition of humor?
Humor is the ability of something to cause amusement or laughter. Humor is also a person’s ability to find amusement or comedy in something. As a verb, humor means to comply with someone’s demands or opinions in order to soothe them. Humor has several other senses as a noun or a verb.
Humor refers to something’s or someone’s ability to make people laugh or be amused. Usually, this is done by involving things that are funny or absurd. For example, a cartoon’s humor may involve slapstick comedy or characters doing ridiculous things as part of a wacky scheme. The word humor may also refer to a specific attempt at being funny. If something successfully uses humor, it is considered to be humorous.
- Real-life examples: Cartoons, jokes, pranks, standup comedy, and funny movies are all examples of things that attempt to use humor to entertain people.
- Used in a sentence: We laughed when my dad accidentally opened the gift meant for the dog, but he failed to see the humor in the situation.
Humor also refers to a person’s ability or willingness to find amusement or comedy in things. Often, this sense is used in the phrase sense of humor.
- Real-life examples: A person who is full of humor laughs at almost anything and is easily amused. A person with no sense of humor seems to rarely laugh or smile. Someone who finds offensive or shameful things funny is said to have a bad or poor sense of humor.
- Used in a sentence: My friend has no sense of humor and never laughs at any of my funny jokes.
When you humor someone, you agree with what they are saying or go along with their demands so that they don’t get angry or become a problem. Usually, you don’t actually agree with the person you are humoring. You do it to make them go away or be less of a problem.
Used in a sentence: I know you think my ideas are really stupid, but just humor me for a second.
Where does humor come from?
The first records of humor come from the early 1300s. It ultimately comes from the Latin hūmor, meaning “moisture” or “body fluid.”
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What are some other forms related to humor?
- humorous (adjective)
- humorful (adjective)
- humorless (adjective)
- outhumor (verb)
- prehumor (noun, verb)
- unhumored (adjective)
- well-humored (adjective)
What are some synonyms for humor?
What are some words that share a root or word element with humor?
What are some words that often get used in discussing humor?
How is humor used in real life?
Humor is a common word that refers to things that are funny or that make people laugh.
Door-2-door salesman tried to interest me in a home security system, but I could hardly hear him over the barking of my dog.
He didn’t seem to see the humor in the situation.
— Selkiesulking (@Selkiesulking1) December 27, 2020
Paul Chryst has such a great, dry sense of humor. When asked about the trophy breaking he played it off at first ("Am I under oath?") then slipped in the line "We just wanted everyone to have a piece."
— Dave Heller (@dave_heller) December 30, 2020
Still digging the VW commercial with Tracy Morgan and Stevie Wonder – funny without trying. That's my kind of humor.
— Caitlin Morrall (@CaitlinMorrall) February 8, 2010
Try using humor!
Which of the following words would most likely be used to describe humor?
How to use humor in a sentence
This whole school from home thing is hard, I need some humor.
As a child, I’d often join her at the polls and observe how she and her rival ward leader from the opposing party would joust politically, with good humor and care for each other and the community personally.Departure from convention—mom, baseball, the postal worker, and patriotism|jakemeth|August 19, 2020|Fortune
There’s a lot of art and music, and a lot of humor subgenres that are kind of similar to Alt TikTok.A guide to the TikTokish apps that want to be the next TikTok|Abby Ohlheiser|August 6, 2020|MIT Technology Review
The Texas native with a wry sense of humor says she’s partial to mixing science and music.
A humor laden 140 characters or less tweet can lead to massive exposure on Twitter, an achievement that would take other forms of advertising, very large budgets to achieve.How to plan your social media strategy for any business|Sumeet Anand|June 24, 2020|Search Engine Watch
This is comedy based on a cold humor, detached, euphemistic, devoid of any generosity.Houellebecq’s Incendiary Novel Imagines France With a Muslim President|Pierre Assouline|January 9, 2015|DAILY BEAST
There was poop humor—literally—when Valerie's house becomes flooded with fecal matter after a pipe bursts.‘The Comeback’ Finale: Give Lisa Kudrow All of the Awards|Kevin Fallon|December 29, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Under the Sun King, such humor—and the laughter associated with it—was seen as more suitable for the masses.
As ever, Jon Stewart and The Daily Show crew encouraged us to find some humor alongside the horror and the shame.Jon Stewart Laughs to Keep From Vomiting at the CIA Report|Jack Holmes, The Daily Beast Video|December 13, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Some cuts, a few slight character changes, an idea or two about putting some humor into the script.Alfred Hitchcock’s Fade to Black: The Great Director’s Final Days|David Freeman|December 13, 2014|DAILY BEAST
I was a little riled at first myself, but the second and last lady who came out put me in excellent humor.Glances at Europe|Horace Greeley
The gray eyes, once flashing with the light of kindly humor, now softened with sympathy, now glowed with pity.
He was judge of the admiralty court of Pennsylvania; his writings abound with wit, humor and satire.The Every Day Book of History and Chronology|Joel Munsell
When Tim hesitates he loses his temper as a sensible man should lose it—he buries it, and his indomitable good humor wins.
He paused, and to illustrate the imperious humor of the Scot, he waved his fingers and a red wrister at me.
Medical definitions for humor
Scientific definitions for humor
Doctors in ancient times and in the Middle Ages thought the human body contained a mixture of four substances, called humors, that determined a person's health and character. The humors were fluids (humor means fluid in Latin), and they differed from each other in being either warm or cold and moist or dry. Each humor was also associated with one of the four elements, the basic substances that made up the universe in ancient schemes of thought. Blood was the warm, moist humor associated with the element fire, and phlegm was the cold, moist humor associated with water. Black bile was the cold, dry humor associated with the earth, and yellow bile was the warm, dry humor associated with the air. Illnesses were thought to be caused by an imbalance in the humors within the body, as were defects in personality, and some medical terminology in English still reflects these outmoded concepts. For example, too much black bile was thought to make a person gloomy, and nowadays symptoms of depression such as insomnia and lack of pleasure in enjoyable activities are described as melancholic symptoms, ultimately from the Greek word melancholia, excess of black bile, formed from melan-, black, and khole, bile. The old term for the cold, clammy humor, phlegm, lives on today as the word for abnormally large accumulations of mucus in the upper respiratory tract. Another early name of yellow bile in English, choler, is related to the name of the disease cholera, which in earlier times denoted stomach disorders thought to be due to an imbalance of yellow bile. Both words are ultimately from the Greek word chole, bile.
Cultural definitions for humor
notes for humor
Idioms and Phrases with humor
see out of sorts (humor).