is named in honour of its inventor, Edmund Clerihew Bentley.
It is a humorous pseudo-biographical quatrain, rhymed as two couplets,
with lines of uneven length more or less in the rhythm of prose.
The name of the subject is usually in the first line - sometimes the second
line. The humour of the clerihew is whimsical rather than satiric. It
is short and pithy, and often contains or implies a moral reflection of
Here are two of my favourites:
Said Des Cartes "I extol
Myself because I have a soul
And beasts do not." Of course
He had to put Des Cartes before the horse.
Said Sir Christopher Wren
"I'm going to dine with some men,
If anyone calls,
Just say I'm designing St Pauls."
and here are some 'not very good because I just wrote them five minutes
ago as examples
Samwise Gamgee was helping his master,
Get ready a little bit faster,
But apart from his shiny gold Ring
To wear, Frodo hadn't a thing
Frodo Baggins said "Sam
I think I'll go just as I am
Everyone thinks that I'm cute
Dressed up in my best birthday suit!"
Though Pippin Took was bright as a bubble
He always got into trouble
But in spite of being a pain
He still ended up as The Thain!
Merry Brandybuck said, "Do you mind!
I prefer not to be left behind,
I don't mean to nag,
But I feel like an unwanted bag!"
So that's the Clerihew!
Were so accomplished they had little to fear
Except being mistaken for one another
Which happens when you look exactly like your brother.