Tag Archives: Limerick

The Wisdom of Nonsense

WELL-TIMED nonsense is the divinest sense. In the current number of the Cornhill Magazine Canon Selwyn publishes some of the later letters of Edward Lear, and suggests that as the realm of sense is infinite, and as the realm of nonsense … Continue reading

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A Few Links

I have been checking and fixing a few links in the bibliography pages and added a new, interesting article to the Studies on Edward Lear page: Antinucci, Raffaella. “‘Sensational Nonsense.’ Edward Lear and the (Im)purity of Nonsense Writing.” English Literature … Continue reading

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The Archbishop of Dublin (NOT a Lear Limerick)

There was an Archbishop of Dublin Whom corns were incessantly troubling Till one night he arose And stuck pins in his toes Which assuaged that Archbishop of Dublin. This was listed on at a Sotheby’s auction as one in a … Continue reading

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There Was an Old Man of Cape Horn…

A variant version of both illustration and verse for ‘There was an Old Man of Cape Horn’. As first published in the 1846 edition of A Book of Nonsense, the limerick concludes “So he sat on a chair, till he … Continue reading

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Edward Lear and Edward Gibbon

On 2 January 1882 Edward Lear wrote in his diary that he “took a Gibbon’s Rise & Fall up to Mrs. Welfords” and then at the bottom of the page added a limerick obviously inspired by this event: the poem … Continue reading

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The First English Limerick?

The text set as No. XXII in Michael East’s Second Set of Madrigals 1606 is an almost perfect limerick (East, xii and 115-20; Fellowes, 91{1}); a fact which I believe has not been noted before. The piece runs: O metaphysical … Continue reading

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Northrop Frye on Edward Lear and the Limerick

From Northrop Frye’s 1932 Notebook: July 23 I read a book on the limerick the other day by some supercilious ass who talked about Edward Lear as a pioneer but a childish and inane primitive because his first and last … Continue reading

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