Tuesday, May 29, 2007

The Limerick Pub Song

No one really knows how Limericks got their name. One legend says that they originated from a song brought back from France by the Irish Brigade returning to their native Limerick after fighting in Europe in the 18th century. It was often sung as a game in the pub after everyone had a drink or two. As the song went around, each person had to make up a verse about the adventures of persons from various Irish cities, rhyming the verse with the name of the town. If they failed to meet their associates' expectations, they had to take another drink. The chorus of this song was "Will you come up to Limerick?"

Thus the Limerick gained its reputation as an obscene barroom ditty.

The limerick is furtive and mean;
You must keep her in close quarantine,
Or she sneaks to the slums
And promptly becomes
Disorderly, drunk, and obscene.

The lim'rick packs laughs anatomical
Into space that is quite economical,
But the good ones I’ve seen
So seldom are clean,
And the clean ones so seldom are comical.

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