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High Diddle Diddle the Cat and the Fiddle.....Fairy tales, nursey rhymes

annis
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Post by annis » Fri October 15th, 2010, 6:22 pm

And for a bit of fun you can't go past Roald Dahl's Revolting Rhymes

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MLE (Emily Cotton)
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Interest in HF: started in childhood with the classics, which, IMHO are HF even if they were contemporary when written.
Favourite HF book: Prince of Foxes, by Samuel Shellabarger
Preferred HF: Currently prefer 1600 and earlier, but I'll read anything that keeps me turning the page.
Location: California Bay Area

Post by MLE (Emily Cotton) » Fri October 15th, 2010, 6:39 pm

I was always told Humpty Dumpty was about King John and the Magna Carta.

Heavy Words had a different take of one than I had been taught -- Goosey, Goosey Gander, according to my source, was about Oliver Cromwell's insistence on enforcing religious strictures on every one, even "in my lady's chamber."

annis
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Post by annis » Fri October 15th, 2010, 7:27 pm

Somewhere I have a copy of Alan Trussell-Cullen's book A Pocketful of Posies: A History of Nursery Rhymes - will have to look it out. It is a bit old now, though, and it's quite possible that interpretations have altered as more historical information has come to light.

Slightly off-topic, but do mothers still sing nursery rhymes to their kids? I have the impression that it's a dying tradition.

SGM
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Post by SGM » Fri October 15th, 2010, 7:45 pm

[quote=""MLE""]I was always told Humpty Dumpty was about King John and the Magna Carta.

Heavy Words had a different take of one than I had been taught -- Goosey, Goosey Gander, according to my source, was about Oliver Cromwell's insistence on enforcing religious strictures on every one, even "in my lady's chamber."[/quote]

I had a discussion about this one recently and found an explanation about "the old man who wouldn't say his prayers" that implied that the Parliamentarians tested a person's allegiance by how they said the Lord's prayer, ie in Latin or not. I would have thought anyone with an ounce of commonsense even in the 17th century would have managed to recite it in English to allay suspicion even if it was not their norm. My Lady's chamber it said was a reference to priests' holes. Hmmm -- I am not entirely sure about some of these interpretations.
Currently reading - Emergence of a Nation State by Alan Smith

Ash
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Post by Ash » Fri October 15th, 2010, 9:31 pm

[quote=""M.M. Bennetts""]I stand corrected. But you'll still find about a million Brits believe that it's about plague.

Do check out Elizabeth Vergoose, though. She's an under-researched character.[/quote]

Hee, I wouldn't doubt it. Probably the same number of Americans who think the Mother Goose buried in a Boston cemetary is the real thing. Speaking of, This article has some interesting info Not sure what really is true, there are so many different theories. Have you done any research on her?

http://www.answers.com/topic/mother-goose

Ash
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Post by Ash » Fri October 15th, 2010, 9:37 pm

[quote=""annis""]Slightly off-topic, but do mothers still sing nursery rhymes to their kids? I have the impression that it's a dying tradition.[/quote]

I can't speak for moms but I know we always sing them with the kids at preschool. In my class, they are often perfect for teaching some language concepts, plus there rhythm is easy for some of my hearing impaired kids to pick up and imitate.

Here's the Wiki article on Mother Goose which is better than the one I just linked

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mother_Goose

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EC2
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Post by EC2 » Mon December 27th, 2010, 5:02 pm

I have a book 'The Restoration of Cock Robin' by Norman Iles. 'Nursery rhymes and carols restored to their original meanings.' Some of it is a bit far-fetched and fanciful, but it also contains a good deal of interesting information and illustrates how the wording has changed and become sanitised down the years.
Also Malcolm Jones' Secret Middle Ages has lots of folklore explanations that reveal that these rhymes are not as innocent as they seem!
Les proz e les vassals
Souvent entre piez de chevals
Kar ja li coard n’I chasront

'The Brave and the valiant
Are always to be found between the hooves of horses
For never will cowards fall down there.'

Histoire de Guillaume le Mareschal

www.elizabethchadwick.com

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wendy
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Post by wendy » Mon December 27th, 2010, 6:18 pm

There is quite a lot of academic research concerning fairy tales.
One of the most interesting books is Women Who Run With the Wolves (Clarissa Pinkola Estes) which argues that the women often used fairy stories to warn young girls about dangerous sexual situations at a time when they could not overtly speak out for fear of patriarchal retribution.
Another good read is Grimm's Grimmest, which has an excellent introduction by Maria Tatar summarizing the current themes.
Maria Tatar is one of the leading experts in the field -- she has two books I would recommend: Off With Their Heads: Fairytales and the Culture of Childhood and The Hard Facts of Grimm's Fairy Tales.
Wendy K. Perriman
Fire on Dark Water (Penguin, 2011)
http://www.wendyperriman.com
http://www.FireOnDarkWater.com

marshalslion
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try this!

Post by marshalslion » Mon June 27th, 2011, 10:27 pm

Pop Goes The Weasel,The Secret History of Nursery Rhymes by Albert Jack.
ISBN :9781846 1414447.

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TeralynPilgrim
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Post by TeralynPilgrim » Tue June 28th, 2011, 9:04 pm

If you want to hear a story Disney really screwed up, you should look into The Little Mermaid. The true version is beautiful, though it's so sad it makes me feel a little dead inside.

Someone ought to write a novel to retell that story. I would do it, but I don't have the stomach for it.
A Writer's Journey http://teralynpilgrim.blogspot.com/
Querying Sacred Fire,a novel of the Vestal Virgins of Ancient Rome.

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