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clerihew

[kler-uh-hyoo]
noun Prosody.
  1. a light verse form, usually consisting of two couplets, with lines of uneven length and irregular meter, the first line usually containing the name of a well-known person.
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Origin of clerihew

1925–30; named after E. Clerihew Bentley (1875–1956), English writer, its inventor
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for clerihew

Historical Examples

  • "Two gills to the coffin-room, Mrs. Clerihew," he cried to the woman in the kitchen.

    The Shoes of Fortune

    Neil Munro

  • The three kept sentry, knowing that Clerihew must sooner or later return with his convoy, there being no other exit.

    Brother Copas

    Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

  • For a good five minutes the pair mauled Mrs. Clerihew, who, with an air of high gentility, went on ironing shirts.

    Brother Copas

    Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

  • But Mrs. Clerihew, between her lapses, clung passionately to gentility and the world's esteem.

    Brother Copas

    Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

  • When it was time to be going she thanked Mrs. Clerihew very prettily, and walked back with Brother Copas to her father's room.

    Brother Copas

    Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch


British Dictionary definitions for clerihew

clerihew

noun
  1. a form of comic or satiric verse, consisting of two couplets of metrically irregular lines, containing the name of a well-known person
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Word Origin

C20: named after Edmund Clerihew Bentley, who invented it
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for clerihew

n.

humorous verse form, 1928, from English humorist Edmund Clerihew Bentley (1875-1956), who described it in a book published 1906 under the name E. Clerihew.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper