Ken Dodd, a titan of a vanishing age of British comedy whose fame at its peak rivaled that of the Beatles, died on Sunday at his house in Liverpool. He was 90.
His dying was introduced by his publicist, Robert Holmes. Mr. Dodd had not too long ago been hospitalized with a chest an infection.
Immediately recognizable by his unruly mop of hair and snaggletoothed grin, Mr. Dodd got here up by way of the ranks of Britain’s selection circuit, the place performers saved keen crowds entertained with songs, a little bit of dance and a slew of jokes.
He was well-known for his rapid-fire one-liners, surreal flights of fancy, use of fanciful phrases like “tattyfilarious” and marathon stand-up exhibits. Even in his 80s, Mr. Dodd’s exhibits typically ran three to 4 hours. Within the 1960s he held the Guinness world file for the longest joke-telling session: 1,500 jokes in three and a half hours.
He joked about his marathon exhibits: “You suppose you will get away, however you may’t. I’ll comply with you house and I’ll shout jokes by way of your letterbox.”
In Mr. Dodd’s heyday, within the 1960s and ’70s, his fame in Britain was stratospheric. He performed a file 42 straight weeks on the London Palladium, hosted prime-time tv exhibits and hit the music charts with songs, together with his signature tune, “Happiness.”