Words Count - Chapter 26
Exercise 1

Copyright © 2003 Laraine Flemming.
General distribution outside the classroom and redistribution are strictly prohibited.

Directions: Below are the ten words from Chapter 26. Each of the ten words is accompanied by three sentences that use a form of the word. Only one of these sentences uses the word correctly, the other two use it incorrectly. Read all three sentences. Then click the button to the left of the sentence that uses the word correctly.

You may change your answers as you see fit. When you are satisfied that all answers are correct, click the "Submit" button at the end of the exercise. You cannot resubmit the exercise after that point.

If a word in a sentence is marked by *, the word is introduced in Words Count.

Note: If you are using the Internet Explorer as browser, the exercise will only work for version 6 or higher.

The Language of Humor



The author is a famous quip, ready to come up with a funny remark at any moment.

When asked about her background, the applicant quipped into a long story about her difficult childhood.

I find it annoying when people try to answer even serious questions with a quip.


punch line

A punch line is a line that forms in front of a punch bowl.

Timing is important when one delivers the punch line of a joke.

The punch line is always the first sentence of a joke, meant to catch the listener's attention.



Facetious people have no sense of humor and hate it if they become the butt of a joke.

The comedian sensed that the audience was facetious and started to tell his best jokes.

She tried to ease the tension in the room by telling a facetious story about her recent trip.



"That's just great!" is often used ironically, that is, in situations that are far from great.

Ironic people have the iron will to do right no matter what the situation is.

In an ironic story, an author makes fun of him- or herself.



Slapstick humor occurs only in silent movies because it does not rely on words.

Slapstick jokes are jokes without a good punch line.*

Slapstick depends on perfect timing and is difficult to do in front of a live audience.



It was pure parody when the porn shop claimed to be an art store.

The speaker tried to impress her listeners by parodying her accomplishments in front of them.

Shows like Saturday Night Live delight in parodying the habits of news anchors.



A bawdy joke is a joke that isn't really funny.

People who deplore bad taste on cable TV should fight for shows with greater bawdiness.

The official appeared always very proper in public, but could be quite bawdy in private.



A prankster is so full of himself that he hardly listens when other people talk.

A favorite summer prank is splashing water on unsuspecting people in a pool.

Pulling a gun on somebody is a good example of a prank.



Banter is humor that may be considered offensive by some groups.

The comedian was quick-witted enough to banter with the audience on a regular basis.

Banter is banned from most talk shows after the host has delivered his initial monologue.*



The audience watched gleefully as the repulsive villain was finally vanquished* by the hero.

The neighborhood responded with glee when the popular local restaurant closed down.

Gleeful feelings are guilty feelings that arise when you enjoy something that you know you should not like.

Last change made to this page: March 6, 2014

Words Count: Additional Exercises