WHAT IS A LIMERICK?

A limerick is a poem with five lines in a single stanza. In a limerick, the first, second and fifth sentences end with words that rhyme with each other. The third and fourth sentences end with the same rhyming words.

In addition, sentences 1,2, and 5, usually have three strong beats, while sentences 3 and 4 usually have two strong beats.

There are several limerick patterns.

Here are a few of them...

Pattern 1:

There are 2 unstressed syllables followed by 1 stressed syllable

In the far land of Grop lived a man

 

Pattern 2:

Some limericks begin with 1 unstressed syllable followed by 1 stressed syllable, then 2 unstressed syllables, followed by 1 stressed syllable, and then again 2 unstressed syllables, followed by 1 stressed syllable.

A man and a cat and a dog,

Pattern 3:

There can also be limericks with a mixture of both styles
throughout
.

In the far land of Grop lived a man,
His cat was a fine spotted tan.

I BELIEVE THAT THOUGH IT IS BEST TO KEEP A CONSISTENT STYLE, HOW THE POEM SOUNDS WHEN RECITED IS THE MOST IMPORTANT CONSIDERATION.

The limerick-style poems on this website have more than one stanza.

Typically, the first line of a limerick gives information as to the place and main character of the poem. It might also give information as to a time, usually general, but possibly specific.


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