Why write a limerick?
Has your teacher assigned it as homework? Do you want to send a personal one to a friend or family member for that "special" occasion? Do you want to improve the precision, compactness, and discipline of your writing skills? The best reason of course is because it's fun.
You can use the template below to make your meter absolutely perfect. Lines 1 2 and 5 should rhyme. Lines 3 and 4 should also rhyme. Note that a rhyming dictionary helps a lot.1. ____ ____ ____, ____ ____ ____, ____ ____ ____,
If you want to download a larger copy of the above template for your class or yourself can grab it here: Limerick Template
Each group of three syllables is called an anapest foot: ____ ____ ____, The emphasis should be on the red syllable
An anapest foot is defined as: "special and significant stress of voice laid on particular words or syllables."
Outside of being the thing at the end of your leg a "foot" can also mean a group of two or more syllables in which one syllable has the major stress forming the basic unit of poetic rhythm." In our example "she can do" is an anapest foot.
To elaborate here's an example of a limerick written with perfect meter and rhyme. Note that according to the website Dictionary.com (who provided all the definitions on this page) the pronunciation of "churl" is similar to the "ch" in "church.":
1. Betty Sue is an amorous girl
2. She's an expert at make-up and curl
3. But there's more she can do
4. Than to primp and to coo
5. If you cross her the lass is a churl.
* Notice that lines 1, 2, and 5 rhyme with each other * Again lines 3 and 4 do as well * There are exactly nine syllables in lines 1, 2, and 5 * Lines 3 and 4 contain exactly 6 syllables each
The red syllables are where the emphasis should be placed. Emphasis is defined as: special and significant stress of voice laid on particular words or syllables. An example of the wrong emphasis would be using the name Barbara instead of Betty Sue. "Bar bar a" has an emphasis upon the first syllable while "Bet ty Sue" has the emphasis on the third syllable.
While the limerick is as older than St. Thomas Aquinas, this poetic form became famous through the children's verses of Edward Lear.
Sit vitiorum meorum evacuatio
Concupiscentae et libidinis exterminatio
Caritatis et patientiae
Humilitatis et obedientiae
Omniumque virtutum augmentatio.
Okay so that's in Latin. Here's the translation attributed to Irene Blase:
Let it be for the elimination for my sins
For the expulsion of desire and lust
[And] for the increase of charity and patience
Humility and obedience
As well as all the virtues.
Although Aquinas's limerick is about a religious topic and although Lear was from Britain the limerick poem traditionally is bawdy and usually associated with the Irish culture.
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