How did medieval jesters entertain people? Did they tell jokes?
Jesters were highly common throughout Medieval Europe as comical entertainers in both the courts of nobles and at fairs for the common people.
Jesters who worked in the courts of the nobility most likely had a comfortable life in the castle which centered around their entertainment of the people of the court, although their statues would only remain comfortable as long as they were found funny. Most jesters used a combination of physical comedy, strange clothing, and songs in order to entertain their courts and were highly popular figures during this period. They also sang songs about contemporary figures that would poke fun at their actions and exploits, which were often quite common.
Travelling jesters had a much more difficult life and would usually travel from fair to fair and gain their living off of money thrown to them after their performances. Life could be difficult for these travelling entertainers, although they often found support through the fellow entertainers they traveled with.