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Limerick Poetry

A limerick is a silly poem with five lines.  They are often funny or nonsensical.  All of the limericks on our site are family friendly (G-rated).

How to write a limerick:

The first, second and fifth lines rhyme with each other and have the same number of syllables (typically 8 or 9).  The third and fourth lines rhyme with each other and have the same number of syllables (typically 5 or 6).

Limericks often start with the line "There once was a..." or "There was a..."

Example of an 8,8,5,5,8 syllable limerick:

There once was a clover named Kate,
Who sat on the edge of a plate
The fancy folk dined
On foods of all kind
Then tossed her at quarter past eight

History of the limerick:

Limericks were made famous by Edward Lear, a famous author who wrote the "Book of Nonsense" in the 1800's.  This was an entire book of silly limericks.

Limericks aren't Irish (Edward Lear was English) -- but there is a Limerick county in Ireland and they are fun little poems for children to write -- so writing Saint Patrick's day limericks with the class is a fun and educational exercise for children to do.  For young children, you can focus on the rhyming and ignore the syllable count.

You don't have to do a Saint Patrick's theme -- you can write limericks with any theme you like!

Examples of limericks:

I've included a couple of Saint Patrick's day limericks I've written and some of the original limericks written by Edward Lear.

I hope you enjoy and that you take the time to try writing one of your own!


Limericks by Leanne Guenther:

St. Patrick's Day Limerick 1

St. Patrick's Day Limerick 2

St. Patrick's Day Limerick 3

Limericks by Edward Lear:

Printable version of these instructions


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