A joke exploiting the different possible meanings of a word or the fact that there are words that sound alike but have different meanings.
A play on words
SAMPSON 'Tis all one, I will show myself a tyrant: when Ihave fought with the men, I will be cruel with themaids, and cut off their heads.
GREGORY The heads of the maids?
SAMPSON Ay, the heads of the maids, or their maidenheads;take it in what sense thou wilt.
Act I, scene i, lines