Great fleas have little fleas upon their backs to bite ’em,
And little fleas have lesser fleas, and so ad infinitum.
And the great fleas themselves, in turn, have greater fleas to go on,
While these again have greater still, and greater still, and so on.
This quite well-known ditty is remembered today, whereas its model, by Dean Jonathan Swift, is surely much less known:
So nat’ralists observe, a flea
Hath smaller fleas that on him prey;
And these have smaller fleas to bite ’em.
And so proceeds Ad infinitum.
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