Respuesta de los lectores: if sarcasm is the lowest form of wit, what is the highest?

If sarcasm is the lowest form of wit, what is the highest? Dr Willis Stone, Londres

Send new questions to nq@theguardian.com.

Brevity. Yohdur

Terry and June. WithoutPurpose

Sarcasm … delivered deadpan, with warmth and a Yorkshire accent, can be the height of humour. 303Squadron

Innuendo is by far the lowest. Sarcasm done well is the backbone of much quality humour. Dunnster71

I refer you to Fawlty Towers. Sarcasm can be sublime. lotus123

The complete Wilde quote, to my reading, neatly flips the first part over: “Sarcasm is the lowest form of wit, but the highest form of intelligence.” Ironic that only the first part is ever quoted. hogbenfL

Surely puns are the lowest. FitfulThistles

Don’t call me Shirley! TwirlipOfTheMists

Fish puns. FacelessBureaucrat0

They occasionally flounder, especially when they’ve got no sole. keithrickaby

Oh cod, I can’t believe I’m herring this. EnglishmanInDundee

Tall stories? Aireman

Those would fall flat, surely … AnAverageJoe

In Elizabethan times, the pun was considered the highest form of wit. Most humour is at someone else’s expense, whether it’s Tom and Jerry, mothers-in-law, Irishmen, etc. But puns are jokes that are not at anyone’s expense, other that at the expense of the English language. zanyhorse

Ronnie Corbett is the lowest form of wit. HepAthlete

The highest form of wit must be someone telling a joke at the top of Mount Everest. lazysingleton

I don’t think wit really travels well at high altitudes, to whit: have you heard about the butcher who risked everything and opened a shop on top of Mount Everest? The steaks couldn’t be any higher … CharlieFarley

Both the highest and indisputably the most divine type of wit is the migrating godwit. ThereisnoOwl

Shakespeare. “I would challenge you to a battle of wits, but I see you are unarmed” – The Taming of the Shrew. whitman100

An actual test was done of the humorous potential of various things in different cultures. It turns out that the only common denominator, funny in all cultures, is the fart. (This was genuinely published.) pol098

I’ve thought about this for a while but, I’m sorry I haven’t a clue. DT_CyberSec

As a Frankie Howerd fan, I’d go with camp. Oh, please yourselves. robkemp

Farts. Don’t believe me?

Geoffrey Chaucer, The Miller’s Tale. DrFaustroll

The jokes that small children make up. They are always far more unexpected than anything us adults, who have lost so much spontaneity, can come up with. R2D2noisy

Real, honest true-life stories. Mi amiga (who doesn’t hear too well) was told by his wife that their daughter was ill, so go out and buy flowers and a get-well card. He came back with flowers and a bakewell tart. louislouis1234

Probably something with a punchline in ancient Greek. jno50

Farce. Sometimes being a form of satire, but wittier and more sustained. It requires a deeper contemplation of the circumstances than the often unthought, off-the-shoulder satirical snap. A good farce can maintain the humour for a whole play or programme on the single theme, while satire is but a single shot wasted in a moment. buildertim

Replies to notes and queries. TinyTinyMouse

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