Irish Humor

No one can deny that Ireland is a country renowned worldwide for its sense of humor. Like England's dry wit, the Irish humor is sharp and quick. Attempting to offer an explanation of this humor is like trying to explain complex physics and mathematics to someone who has no background in it.

Irish people identify humor as being one of the biggest identifiable character traits that belongs to their culture. From a 2009 survey that asked 1,000 people in Ireland to rank Irish characteristics came the revelation that even Irish people believe a sense of humor is their number one characteristic. This was chosen over friendliness and being talkative which are also character traits that Irish people are known and loved for worldwide.

Q: How can you tell if an Irishman is having a good time?
A: He's Dublin over with laughter!

Funny Irish Sayings

Irish humor tends to be delivered with a bite but their eyes are smiling as well. Irish sayings capture this "cynical said with a smile" notion rather well.

"Never iron a four-leaf clover, because you don't want to press your luck." -Author Unknown

"If it was raining soup, the Irish would go out with forks." - Brenden Behan

The timeless Irish jokes that are repeated over and over again tend to center around the themes of alcohol, leprechauns, religion and the bar. The Irish can find humor in the simplest of situations, make a person's hard luck seem not so bad after all and the Irish are great at finding double meanings and creating jokes with them.

Q: Why can't you borrow money from a leprechaun?
A: Cause they're always a little short!

Q: How do you get an Irishman on the roof?
A: Tell him the drinks are on the house.

Limericks, while not proven to be of Irish origin, are mostly thought of as being from the Irish city of Limerick. Even if they weren't created there, the Irish have definitely taken ownership of the sometimes bawdy comic verses. A limerick is defined as a verse that consists of five lines. The first, second, and fifth lines rhyme as do the third and fourth lines. This example by Edward Lear demonstrates how a limerick verse flows.

There was an Old Man of Kilkenny,
Who never had more than a penny;
He spent all that money,
In onions and honey,
That wayward Old Man of Kilkenny

The reason that Irish sayings have stood the test of time is because they use Irish humor to relay some of life's important messages. This is where the Irish people have shined and continue to do so to this day.

"You've got to do your own growing, no matter how tall your grandfather was."

"It is better to be a coward for a minute than dead for the rest of your life."

Irish Coffee & Tea
Irish Chocolate

Become a fan of

Disclaimer: is an affiliate website that receives commissions from sales of the products listed. We have purchased and sampled many, but not all, of the products on these pages.