You all know about those 5-line rhyming poems, but do you know where they came from? Edward Lear, the twentieth child born to his parents, was born in Highgate, England May 12, 1812. An epileptic and bipolar, he had to start earning a living as an artist at age 14. By age 18 he had already established himself as a skilled ornithological draughtsman and was nominated as an Associate of the Linnean Society.
With deteriorating health, the first edition of A Book of Nonscence (written under the pseudonym Derry Down Derry) was published in 1846 and contained 72 limericks. The third edition, published in 1861, contained 112.
In addition to his art, he also published numerous other books including his 1865 collection of “Nonsense” stories, The History of the Seven Families of the Lake Pipple-Popple, and “Nonsense” songs like The Owl and the Pussycat (1867), Nonsense Songs, Stories, Botany and Alphabets (1870), and More Nonsense (1871). His final Nonsense book, Laughable Lyrics, was released in 1876.
With his death in 1888, Lear left behind a rich legacy of art and humor.
What are some of your favorite Limericks?