A map showing which nationality is the primary butt of each nation's jokes. Click on the map to reveal the jokes. You can also zoom in for a closer look.
Romain Seignovert collects jokes. Living in Brussels, the headquarters of the European Union, means he meets people from all over the continent and hears the mean things they say about each other. Since 2013, he's been collecting these jokes on his blog, Europe Is Not Dead.
Far from being an outlet for bigotry or xenophobia, Seignovert, a Frenchman, thinks such wisecracks represent "a positive interaction between communities." He tells BuzzFeed:
I don't think that jokes among nationalities are actually mean - it's more like teasing between brothers. You will notice that actually Europeans tend to make jokes about the ones they have the more cultural or linguistic ties with.
His research reveals that some countries are special magnets for mockery. Belgium is the target of French, Dutch and Luxemburgish jokes. Sweden is the punch bag of the Nordics (Denmark, Norway, Finland). Bosnia gets it in the neck from most of the Balkans. Seignovert thinks you can tell a lot about a country from the way it chooses to mock its neighbour.
I learned that the type of jokes differ from one country to another - sometimes the neighbour is portrayed as stupid (Austrians for the Swiss for instance), sometimes as lazy (Montenegrins for Bosnians), sometimes as introverted (Finns for Estonians), sometimes as arrogant (French for Belgians). The European jokelore is thus quite rich and this makes all those jokes interesting to discover.
Seignovert hopes to turn his research into a book and is currently seeking a publisher.
1. Romanians joke about Hungarians.
"How do you get a Hungarian out of the bath tub? Throw in a bar of soap".
2. Germans joke about the Dutch.
3. Swedes joke about Norwegians.
4. Finns joke about Swedes.
"What is the difference between Swedes and Finns? The Swedes have nice neighbours."
5. Danes joke about Swedes.
"Keep Denmark clean – show a Swede to the ferry."
6. The Swiss joke about Austrians.
"Why is the Austrian flag 'red-white-red'? So that they can't raise it upside-down."
7. Norwegians joke about Swedes.
8. The Dutch joke about Belgians.
9. Albanians joke about Greeks.
"What do you call a Greek with 300 hundred wives? A shepherd."
10. Bulgarians joke about Macedonians.
11. Ukrainians joke about Moldovians.
"What is the special Moldovan tomato soup? Hot water in a red bowl."
12. Moldovians joke about Romanians.
"What's big, black, noisy, makes a lot of smoke and cuts carrots in five? The Romanian machine for cutting carrots in four".
13. Slovenians joke about Bosnians.
"A Slovene, a Bosnian and a Montenegrin run a 100m race. The Slovene wins. Why? The Montenegrin gave up, and the Bosnian lost his way."
14. Croatians joke about Bosnians.
15. Serbians joke about Montenegrins.
"Why did the Montegrin become so lazy? Because the Bosnian once said to him: 'Let me explain...'"
16. Hungarians joke about Scots.
"Nowadays the Scots do not play bagpipes to frighten their enemies, they do it to annoy their neighbours."
17. Latvians joke about Estonians.
"In the film The Matrix the stand-in of the main character Neo was Estonian."
18. Estonians joke about Finns.
19. Austrians joke about Germans.
"The Prime Ministers of Germany and Austria met to exchange notes. 'How are things in Germany?' asked the Prime Minister of Austria. The German sighed, 'Well, in Germany the situation is serious,' he said, 'but not hopeless.' 'In Austria the situation is hopeless,' the Austrian Prime Minister replied, 'but not serious'."
20. Czechs joke about Slovakians.
"The Slovak language was invented by Stur, who was drunk and tried to translate Russian to Czech."
21. Slovakians joke about Czechs.
"A Slovak man, a Polskie man and a Czech man buy German cars. The Slovak man buys a Mercedes-Benz, The Polskie man buys a BMW. And the Czech man buys a Trabant".
22. Romanians joke about Moldovans.
In Bucharest all the signs that used to say "Bad dog" have been replaced with signs that say "We have a Moldovan guest".
23. Serbs joke about Bosnians.
"A dumb Bosnian, a smart Bosnian, and Pinocchio are travelling on a train. There is a biscuit on the table. The train enters a tunnel and when it comes out, the biscuit is gone. Q: who ate it? A: The dumb Bosnian. Pinochio and the smart Bosnian are fictional characters."
24. Lithuanians joke about Estonians.
"Hey, who's standing over there? It's an Estonian running."
25. Spaniards joke about the French.
"How do you brainwash a Frenchman? Fill his underpants with water."
26. Portuguese joke about the Spanish.
"How do you recognize a Spaniard in a library? He is the only one to look at a world map of Madrid."
27. The French joke about Belgians.
28. Belgians joke about the French.
"Why do we say 'going to the toilets' in France and 'going to the toilet' in Belgium ? Because in France, you have to visit many of them before finding one clean enough."
29. Brits joke about the Irish.
"Did you hear about the cross-eyed Irish teacher? He resigned because he had no control over his pupils."
30. The Irish joke about Brits.
31. Greeks joke about Albanians.
"Why do Albanian submarines come out of water every two minutes? Because the rowers need to take a breath."
32. Turks joke about Greeks.
"A Greek and a Turk were sitting at a party. Someone told a Turkish Joke and the Greek guy got offended. The Greek guy walked up to the Turk and asked him, 'Don't you get offended when you hear these Turkish jokes?' The Turk replied, 'For you they are jokes, for us they are memories'."
33. Croats joke about Montenegrins.
34. Bosnians joke about Montenegrins.
"Do you know how do they build motorways in Montenegro? They build one kilometre and then just end it with a sign: 'etc… etc… etc…'"
35. Montenegrins joke about Bosnians.
"A Bosnian and a Japanese were talking about priorities in life.
The man from Japan said:
'For me, Japan is first, then my job, and then comes the family.'
The Bosnian replied:
'For me, it is the opposite. First comes my family, then my job and then comes Japan'."
36. Macedonians joke about Greeks.
"A Greek couple quarrels. The husband says :
'If only you knew how to clean and cook, I would not need a cleaning lady in this house.'
'And you ? If only you knew how to make love, I would not need a Macedonian lover'."
37. Poles joke about Germans.
"A German, a Russian and a Pole find a dusty old lamp. They rub it, and a genie pops out, explaining that he will grant each of them one wish. The German wishes for all Russians to disappear from the face of the Earth.
'Your wish will be granted', says the genie. The Russian wishes for all Germans to disappear from the face of the Earth.
'Your wish will also be granted', says the genie. Then he asks the Pole what he wants.
'Will you really grant the German's wish?' asks the Pole. 'Yes,' says the genie. 'And the Russian's?' 'Also.' Then the Pole says:
'In that case, I would like a cup of coffee'."
38. Belarusians joke about Estonians.
"I told some Estonian fellows that they're slow."
"What did they reply?"
"Nothing, but they beat me up the following day. "
39. Italians joke about... Italians.
"Why does the Pope always kiss the ground after a flight? Only someone who has already traveled with Alitalia will understand."