Dennis Wheatley's Limericks from the Great War

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Darren
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Dennis Wheatley's Limericks from the Great War

Post by Darren » Thu 13 Nov, 2014 21:53:34

At this year's DW convention Mary G opened the day with a thought provoking talk about DW and the Great War. It resulted in a stimulating discussion and got me thinking about this period of DW's life.

I apologise if the below is already known amongst the DW community but it was new to me.

Whilst researching DW and the Great War I found a set of limericks that he wrote whilst stationed at Biscot. It is not appropriate to quote them direct on this site - when you read them you'll realise why - but heed the warning on the opening page of the following link and then click on the wheatley.png button.

http://www.worldwar1luton.com/object/de ... -limericks

I'm surprised DW didn't later publish them in Gunmen, Gallants and Ghosts. :oops:
Last edited by Darren on Fri 19 Dec, 2014 09:44:17, edited 1 time in total.
Regards,

Darren.

Steve Whatley
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Post by Steve Whatley » Thu 13 Nov, 2014 22:29:06

Yes, I can just see Messrs Hutchinson publishing that sort of material...

This is certainly new to me, though I have seen some similar examples - described in the catalogue as 'lewd doggerel' - offered at auction about twenty-five years ago.

You really are doing a splendid job Darren, unearthing hitherto-unseen DW material and information.[font=Courier New] [/font]

Cibator
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Post by Cibator » Fri 14 Nov, 2014 10:16:45

Hmmm, yes .... not at all the sort of thing you associate with Mr Wheatley! The equivalent, I suppose, ninety-odd years ago, of posting nude selfies. Where are the originals held nowadays? They obviously passed out of DW's control, else I'm sure he'd have destroyed them once he became famous, for fear of the potential embarrassment.
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Darren
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Post by Darren » Fri 14 Nov, 2014 16:40:22

Cibator wrote:Where are the originals held nowadays? They obviously passed out of DW's control, else I'm sure he'd have destroyed them once he became famous, for fear of the potential embarrassment.
I assume the originals are at the Wardown Park Museum, Luton ( http://www.lutonculture.com/wardown-park-museum/ ) as part of the Biscot Camp archives.

It looks as though there are more limericks on the other side as you can can see the faint shadows of more DW writing. I'll email them to see if they can digitalize the other side and make them available online.

It's a superb project irrespective of the DW content.
Regards,

Darren.

Charles
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Post by Charles » Fri 14 Nov, 2014 18:04:10

I like the comparison with nude selfies. Very up-to-date !

As this and parts of the Museum show, human nature doesn't change that much over the years, does it ?

These limericks can perhaps be seen as the teenage precusors of his later erotic writing, and especially of his unpublished erotic masterpiece The Lusty Youth of Roger Brook.

I agree this is a great piece of further research ... and it continues to amaze me how much material survives from even DW's early years.

It gives such a good taste of the man himself and of the times he lived in.

Here's to your (and others') next discoveries !

Best as always !
Charles

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Post by ericmocata » Sat 15 Nov, 2014 19:07:02

I just wish somebody would type these out, as I have some difficulty reading Wheatley's handwriting. Of course, his poor spelling doesn't help. I got that there was a bishop from Birmingham and some frisky business ensues, but there are various words that I can't make out, so I have to guess at what he is writing.

Regardless, I think I got the idea, but it would still be nice to know the actual words he wrote.

Is it just me who has a hard time reading his writing?

Darren
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Post by Darren » Sun 16 Nov, 2014 09:38:22

I also struggled with the odd word.

There are further references to DW in the site's War Diaries.

Check out 25 February: http://www.worldwar1luton.com/object/no ... ruary-1917

Check out 4 March: http://www.worldwar1luton.com/object/c- ... march-1917
Last edited by Darren on Sun 16 Nov, 2014 18:32:53, edited 1 time in total.
Regards,

Darren.

Jim
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Post by Jim » Sun 16 Nov, 2014 13:44:21

ericmocata wrote:I just wish somebody would type these out, as I have some difficulty reading Wheatley's handwriting. Of course, his poor spelling doesn't help. I got that there was a bishop from Birmingham and some frisky business ensues, but there are various words that I can't make out, so I have to guess at what he is writing.

Regardless, I think I got the idea, but it would still be nice to know the actual words he wrote. Is it just me who has a hard time reading his writing?
Like "wilie" for "wily" or "hassok" for "hassock"? :rofl

I have re-typed the whole sequence, with spellings corrected, punctuated for sense, and the odd missing word supplied. There was one phrase I had to Google--even though I thought my reading was right, it made no sense to me. (It's the expression in quotes, if you really want to know.) If management thinks it's okay, I will post them. (We're all adults...)

By the way, I can confirm Darren's assumption that the other side is four more pieces of lewd doggerel. By downloading the scanned sheet from the Luton site, and using the "horizontal flip" and enlargement features on my image viewer, I can see the tell-tale "There was an old" beginnings...
Last edited by Jim on Mon 17 Nov, 2014 01:08:49, edited 5 times in total.

Charles
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Post by Charles » Sun 16 Nov, 2014 20:15:01

Management thinks it's ok ... thanks for checking ... we're all adults, and far worse is available on the internet these days at the click of a button !

Nice work, Jim - and thank you !
Charles

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Post by Darren » Sun 16 Nov, 2014 21:29:47

Jim, Charles - you make my original post sound like it's from a puritanical prude [-o<

Post them please, Jim, they ought to be on this site. Anyone who has read DW's memoirs won't be suprised. :smt077
Regards,

Darren.

Charles
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Post by Charles » Sun 16 Nov, 2014 22:11:43

You were both being cautious for my sake and I appreciate it .... if the site is blocked (I hope not !) it will be my fault !

But it seems to me we should be able to include them ... if we can talk about DW's exploits with 'Shitty Bill' Inglis and his amorous escapades in France in World War I (as we should), it seems to me we should also be able to talk about his (thank you, Steve, for the phrase) 'lewd doggerel' !


All best to all !
Charles

Jim
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Post by Jim » Mon 17 Nov, 2014 00:47:37

Here, then, are the transcribed limericks--in a separate message, so the virginal can avert their eyes! :twisted:

Once an old Bishop of Buckingham
Wrote a treatise on women and fucking 'em.
But a wily old Turk
Wrote a far finer work
All about arseholes and sucking 'em.

There was an old Bishop of Birmingham
Who used to screw girls while confirming 'em.
He knelt on his hassock
[And] lifted his cassock
And shoved [his] ten inches of worm in 'em.

There was an old Bishop of Leicester
Who got a young girl and undressed her.
She said, 'Do you mind--
Will you fuck me behind?
The front is beginning to fester.'

There was a young curate of Eltham
Who never met girls but he felt 'em.
In dark lanes he'd linger
And play at 'stink finger,'
And shriek with delight when he smelt 'em.

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Post by shanedwyer » Thu 18 Dec, 2014 15:44:27

It's been a while since I've visited this site and although I'm being more than tardy with my comment, may I say that the unearthing of DW's limericks is a coup of coups. I, perfectly literally, laughed out loud. You've excelled yourself with this one Darren. Bravo!

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