The trisyllabic metrical foot is made up of three syllables that can either be stressed or unstressed respectively as in accentual-syllabic meter or long or short as in quantitative meter. The Amphibrach is trisyllabic because it has three syllables and is identified has having its stressed syllable surrounded by two unstressed syllables as shown in the Table below:
The amphibrach is the main foot used in the writing classical limerick poems. The poems below are used as examples.
The scansion of the Limerick written by Edward Lear (1812 –1888) in quantitative meter is shown where the amphibrach foot in the poem with trimeter (3) and dimeter (2) verses in a rhyme scheme aabbA is used. The capital letter in the rhyme scheme indicates a repeated rhyme in the last verse.
The scansion on this Limerick of unknown origin shown below makes use of the amphibrach foot with tetrameter (4) and dimeter (2) verses in a rhyme scheme aabba; the raised numbers in the rhyme scheme indicate foot pattern of the verses.
What is meant by catalectic? When a verse is a metrically incomplete that is, lacking a syllable at the end or ending with an incomplete foot, such a verse is referred to as being catalectic.
Shown below is the scansion on the Limerick by a 21st Century poet. It is made up of the amphibrach exclusively. The rhyme scheme sits on aabba. The first, second and fifth verses are in Trimeter. The third and fourth verses are in Dimeter. Take a look:
The amphibrach is the main foot used in the writing classical limerick poems. The Limerick is a kind of a witty, humorous, or nonsense poem, especially one in five verse amphibrachic meter or anapestic with strict rhyme scheme aabba. The form can be found in England as of the early years of the 18th century. It was popularized by Edward Lear in the 19th century, although he never used the term limerick.