‘Funk fungus’ is a funny phrase and scientists now know why
A study looking at more than 55,000 pairs of words has found why word pairings like “gnome bone” and “spam scrotum” seem to be more amusing than their constituent parts
13 May 2022
On their own there is nothing particularly funny about the words “gnome” and “bone”, but put them together and it is a different story. Pairings like “gnome bone” seem to make people chuckle, at least according to a study that looked at the funniness of thousands of pairs of words.
Cynthia S. Q. Siew at the National University of Singapore and her colleagues generated random word pairings using a list of around 5000 words previously studied for their humour or lack thereof. …