Back when the Internet was still a baby, the primary users were its creators, math and tech-oriented academics. So as a result, math jokes have an elemental role in the history of the web. Sure, funny TikToks and animal snapchats may have overshadowed them, but browse through a few geeky subreddits and Twitter hashtags and you will still find them.

Mathematician and author John Allen Paulos in his book Mathematics and Humor described several ways that mathematics — generally considered a dry, formal activity — overlaps with humor: both are forms of "intellectual play"; both have "logic, pattern, rules, structure"; and both are "economical and explicit". Bored Panda thinks the man definitely has a point, so we compiled the best math jokes we could find online to prove it. Continue scrolling and after you're done, tell us in the comments if you agree!

#1

Big Sad

Big Sad

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

Haha oh my gosh! That's pretty much true. I showed my math teacher this, she loved it.

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In An Essay on Comedy (originally presented in 1877), George Meredith goes to the extreme of calling humor "comedy" just as Paulos goes to the extreme of calling jokes "humor", avoiding the common and pejorative associations attached to "jokes". But as Paul H. Grawe pointed out, Meredith is really talking about humor, specifically humor that takes at least a momentary mental calculation in order to catch it.

#2

I Just Love This!

I Just Love This!

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

Oh my god, that is the best one yet!

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"Meredith’s discussion can be seen as recognizing at least three sub-forms of mental humor," Grawe wrote. "First, there is Incongruity, which Paulos early on indicates to be the center of all humor as far as he is concerned. In Incongruity, as we later empirically defined it, two things, ideas, or concepts are brought into collision with each other or into collision with a verbal structure. A drawing of a flat disk on a globe spindle and beneath the cartoon caption indicating this was Columbus’ first globe is humor of this second form, a thing — a dis — collided with an idea — a globe — but collided by the choice of words in the caption."

#3

Gold

Gold

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

oh, haha! I has to re-read that sign! this is a legendary roast.

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The second Meredithian form is Word Play, two words or verbal constructions are made to collide with one another. Consider this:

"Knock, knock," "Orange," "—Orange who?" "Orange you glad I'm not going to tell another one?"

The word "Orange" colliding with "Aren’t ya," which can often be pronounced similarly, is the joke.

#4

It's Very Simple

It's Very Simple

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

oh jeez, I showed this to my dad, and he would not stop laughing.

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The third Meredithian form is the Gotcha joke. It's is laughing at the form of humor. "Someone thinks he is smart or otherwise talented and acts on that talent. And then, it is made apparent that he wasn’t that smart or otherwise talented and is got for his effort," Grawe explained. Paulos' discussion, like Meredith's, is easily analyzable as covering Incongruity, Word Play, and Gotcha humor.

So probably even 19th-century thinkers understood that math can be an excellent vessel for humor.

#5

My Dads Attempt At A Math Joke

My Dads Attempt At A Math Joke

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

That's why plants hate math. It gives them square roots, I just got that joke!

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#6

Symmetry Irl

Symmetry Irl

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

Haha! that, is, HILARIOUS!

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#7

Wait What?

Wait What?

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

Explosm rocks! But still, that "i love being mentally challenged." got me.

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#8

A Cringe-Worthy Meme

A Cringe-Worthy Meme

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

*sighs* wow, just wow.

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#9

I'm So Full

I'm So Full

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

XD This one got me. but by then, I would have bought a tread mill, and ate while I ran.

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#10

Simple Geometry Shapes

Simple Geometry Shapes

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

Soooo, what shape is Oregon? Starts counting every edge and angle.

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#11

My Intellect Is Almost Frightening

My Intellect Is Almost Frightening

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Doggo Georgia
Community Member
1 year ago

Hahahaha

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#12

My Friend Sent This To Me... I Love It But I Wish They Kept Going With A Few More Pi Digits

My Friend Sent This To Me... I Love It But I Wish They Kept Going With A Few More Pi Digits

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

*facepalms* "I don't even know what to day anymore..."

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#13

Disgusting Tans

Disgusting Tans

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

Oh man, my math teacher probably wishes she could do that every time I stop paying attention.

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#14

He's In Trouble

He's In Trouble

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Meeple13
Community Member
1 year ago

Lol this happens all the time

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#15

Happy 1st Birthday

Happy 1st Birthday

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

oh! I just learned this. that poor confused 1 year old XD

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#16

Turning All Odds Into Even

Turning All Odds Into Even

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

haha, I was laughing SO freaking hard at this one!

#17

That's A Whole Lot Of Strawberries

That's A Whole Lot Of Strawberries

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Ray Martin
Community Member
1 year ago

OK, confession time - I left school at fifteen years old, forty nine years ago, and I didn't understand this one, so I had to look it up. I like it, though.

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#18

Just Why???

Just Why???

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Skyler Harris
Community Member
1 year ago

This happens to me every f***ing time

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#19

So This Literally Happened 2min Ago, Probably Will Never Make A Better Pun In My Life

So This Literally Happened 2min Ago, Probably Will Never Make A Better Pun In My Life

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

Soo, I don't think I get it.

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#20

Aaahhh... You Stupid Thing

Aaahhh... You Stupid Thing

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Meeple13
Community Member
1 year ago

Well yes, but actually no.

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#21

They Said Math Can Be Found In Nature

They Said Math Can Be Found In Nature

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Rohan Naik
Community Member
1 year ago

I just know this comment will be useful later the buffalo's horn looks like the graph of -x^3

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#22

Cheesy Joke

Cheesy Joke

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Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
1 year ago

Hee

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#23

Uh Oh

Uh Oh

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

Ooohhhhhh, I get it, it was entirely wrong, because he was measuring radius of a circle or something. right?(math is like torture)

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#24

Tanning With The Boys

Tanning With The Boys

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

now, I get a few of those, and they are hilarious, but honestly, its kind of true for some people.

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#25

Jeff Bezos' Secret

Jeff Bezos' Secret

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

*record long sigh* *inhales deeply* WHYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY?!

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#26

My Friend Once Asked Me If Mathematicians Just Masturbate To Algebra All Day

My Friend Once Asked Me If Mathematicians Just Masturbate To Algebra All Day

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WILLIAM FAULK
Community Member
1 year ago

lol, I cant believe someone actually did this!

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#27

No One, Absolutely No One

No One, Absolutely No One

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Aragorn II Elessar
Community Member
1 year ago

Lmfao

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#28

Tan(Go)

Tan(Go)

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Colin L
Community Member
1 year ago

Tan (go)!

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#29

Oops

Oops

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Tanner Wright
Community Member
1 year ago

So... me?

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#30

Haha, Algebra Jokes..

Haha, Algebra Jokes..

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Colin L
Community Member
1 year ago

Eh, it has its ups and downs.

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Note: this post originally had 66 images. It’s been shortened to the top 30 images based on user votes.