A limerick is a genre of poetry that contains five lines. They are characterized as having a strong cadence or beat. Limericks are often used in a humorous fashion.
To maintain a structured beat, the limerick genre has guidelines for syllables for each line. For the first, second and fifth line, the poem must have 7 to 10 syllables. For the third and fourth lines, there must be 5 to 7 syllables. The limerick also has a specific rhyming scheme: AABBA. The poem was made popular in the 19th century by the poet Edward Lear. Its roots can be traced back as early as the 18th century.