First a couple of my favorite math limericks...

This is how the mathematician would see the limerick

And for the others... it reads like this in English:

dozen, a gross, and a score

Just down the road at Cambridge is Trinity College, where many of the mathematical greats of England (and the world) were, and still are, trained...

A graduate student at Trinity

Computed the square of infinity.

But it gave him the fidgets

To put down the digits,

So he dropped math and took up divinity.

It turns out that recently John D. Cook posted some "limerick primes" at his Endeavour blog . The rhyme scheme for a limerick is a,a,b,b,a, so a number like 33223 would be a "limerick" number. It turns out that of all the numbers you can write that way, only eight are prime:

- 11551
- 33113
- 33223
- 33773
- 77447
- 77557
- 99119
- 99559

a-b-a-bc-d-c-de-f-e-fg-g

so a number like 31314040252566 would be a Sonnet Number... and Cook the Computer Master has found all of the prime versions of those as well. It turns out there are 16,942 sonnet primes, at least according to John, I have not verified that count. John has provided the largest and smallest of them: "the smallest of these primes is 10102323454577. The largest is 98987676505033."