National Limerick Day

Celebrate National Limerick Day by spreading love and laughter through published limericks, or write one yourself! Continue to know-how.

When Is National Limerick Day?

National Limerick Day is celebrated on May 12 each year.

National Limerick Day.


To learn more about how you can form a limerick or get some great examples, please read our frequently asked questions.

What is the format of a limerick?

A limerick is one with five lines in one stanza with the first, second, and fifth lines’ ends rhyming. Similarly, the end words of the third and fourth lines need to rhyme. The rhyme in limericks is to have two unstressed synonyms and a stressed one, known as an anapestic rhyme. It should also be noted that the topic of limericks is usually silly or trivial.

Can a limerick be serious?

Even though traditional limericks are humorous with a silly topic, the writer isn’t prohibited from writing a serious one.

Who invented the limerick poem type?

Edward Lear initially popularized limerick form through his books Book of Nonsense’ and ‘More Nonsense, Pictures, Rhymes, Botany, etc..’ In total, he wrote 212 limericks, most of which are considered nonsense literature.

What are some tips for writing a good limerick?

To write an effective piece of limerick, you should try and include a story and start by introducing the subjects in the first line. It is also suggested to make it nonsensical and silly before ending with a plot twist. Once it has been written, remember to read it out loud as many times as required to get the rhyme right.

Limericks for Kids Video

Fun Facts

As peculiar as it might seem, nobody knows why the poem type was named as such. Be that as it may, various theories have been put forward, one of which suggested that comic verses once contained the line “Will you come to Limerick?”.

One of the earliest poems that were similar to modern limericks, called ‘The Doubt of Future Foes,’ written around 1571, was formulated by Queen Elizabeth I.

The earliest example of a poem with the characteristics of a limerick was a Latin prayer written by St. Thomas Aquinas. It goes:

Sit vitiorum meorum evacuatio
Concupiscentae et libidinis exterminatio,
Caritatis et patientiae,
Humilitatis et obedientiae,
Omniumque virtutum augmentatio.

Even Shakespeare added limericks to his writings. For instance, in William Shakespeare’s Great Tragedy, Lago sang,

And let me the canakin clink, clink;
And let me the canakin clink;
A soldier’s a man;
A life’s but a span;
Why then let a soldier drink.

Similarly, his poem ‘Mondayes Worke’ is a limerick and is added below.

Good morow, neighbour Gamble,
Come let you and I goe ramble;
Last night I was shot
Through the braines with a pot,
And now my stomacke doth wamble.’

Famous Limericks

Note: the writers are unknown for the following limericks.

There once was a Martian named Zed
With antennae all over his head
He sent out a lot
of di-di-dash-dot
But nobody knows what he said.

There once was a farmer from Leeds,
Who swallowed a packet of seeds
It soon came to pass,
He was covered with grass.
But has all the tomatoes he needs.

I know this big owl named Stu,
Who stays up all night yelling, “Hoo!”
Once an old man walked by
And he started to cry,
And answered, “I don’t have a clue!”

An elephant slept in his bunk,
And in slumber, his chest rose and sunk.
But he snored—how he snored!
All the other beasts roared
So his wife tied a knot in his trunk.

A mouse in her room woke Miss Dowd
She was frightened, it must be allowed,|
Soon a happy thought hit her
To scare off the critter
She sat up in bed and meowed.

There once were two cats from Kilkenny.
Each thought that was one cat too many,
So they started to fight
And to scratch and to bite
Now, instead of two cats, there aren’t any.

A circus performer named Brian
Once smiled as he rode on a lion
They came back from the ride,
But with Brian inside,
And the smile on the face of the lion.

Notable Limericks

There was an old man of Dumbree,
Who taught little owls to drink tea;
For he said, ‘To eat mice,
Is not proper or nice’
That amiable man of Dumbree.
Edward Lear

The bicycling poodle he saw
Made the cop on the beat drop his jaw;
It was easy to tell
That it rode rather well,
Though its hand signals truly were paw.
Graham Lester

There was a Young Lady of Dorking,
Who bought a large bonnet for walking;
But its colour and size,
So bedazzled her eyes,
That she very soon went back to Dorking.
Edward Lear

A wonderful bird is the pelican,
His bill will hold more than his belican,
He can take in his beak
Enough food for a week
But I’m damned if I see how the helican!
Dixon Lanier Merritt

There once was a wonderful star
Who thought she would go very far
Until she fell down
And looked like a clown
She knew she would never go far.
Kaitlyn Guenther

There was a Young Person of Crete,
Whose toilette was far from complete;
She dressed in a sack,
Spickle-speckled with black,
That ombliferous person of Crete.
Edward Lear

Limerick Quotes

It pains me to see how modern society has totally corrupted the limerick and given it the reputation of lewdness which, in turn, has morally barred our children from even taking a peek into this wonderful form of fun and rhythm. I think Edward Lear would turn in his grave if he knew that.
Bernie Morris

My highest aspiration in life is to serve as the Limerick Laureate of Nantucket.
Alan C. Baird

Limerick gained a reputation for piety, but we knew it was only the rain.
Frank McCourt

It was all kind of fuzzy as if his mind was doing its thinking in limericks.
Sorin Suciu

Since writing many of these little jocular verses, I have noticed a strange effect that keeps you reading: each time you read one limerick, you just cannot help reading the next, especially when they are nicely set out on a page.
Bernie Morris

Limericks don’t come from Limerick. But it comes from that between the verses when they used to have those competitions that they would put in the refrain, “follow me up, follow me up, follow me up to Limerick Town.
Malachy McCourt

I think the first time I really heard poetry was in the schoolyard. Just the little limericks that kids say when they’re jumping rope and playing games. I think that’s the first time I heard rhyming words.
Jill Scott

I have therefore decided to reinvent the limerick as it was originally intended: to poke fun, irreverence, just plain daftness, or erroneous behavior.
Bernie Morris

Limerick Captions for Instagram

  • Ending my day with a sweet limerick.
  • Limerick of my story.
  • Start your day with a smile and a quirky limerick.
  • Limerick with a code meaning.
  • A witty limerick and a cup of coffee make my day.
  • Expressing my happy feelings with this limerick.
  • Signing off with a funny yet meaningful limerick.
  • Is there anything easier than making a limerick?
  • Limericks always lighten my mood.
  • When in stress, give limericks a try.


  • #NationalLimerickDay
  • #LimerickFun
  • #LimerickPosts
  • #LimerickCaptions


You’re on the National Limerick Day Fun Facts, Quotes, and Limericks page.

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