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11

It is a "trick riddle" with the sole purpose to get the answerer to say something that the asker can "hear" as an invitation to pinch, poke or beat the unsuspecting victim. Especially children find this funny. Haumich, while seemingly used as a name, is a contraction of "hau' mich" (= beat me). Another variant of the joke starts with Zwickmi (= pinch ...


2

The original word fomulus in the book is a malapropism for famulus. Duden: Fa|mu|lus, der; -, -se u. …li [lat. famulus = Diener, Gehilfe, H. u.] (veraltet): Famulant. Student, der einem Hochschullehrer assistiert. So the translator to English chose something similar. In my Spanish translation they just write fomulus, and one is left ...



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