Origin of Nursery Rhymes Lyrics
Posted on 1 June 2009
Most well-known nursery rhymes have their origins from events in history. On the BusSongs website, wherever available, you can find nursery rhymes as well as their origins and their meanings. Additionally, the site has music and videos for a large collection of nursery rhymes, poems and other children's songs.
Two ideal examples of such nursery rhymes that are based on historical events is "Please Remember", which is a reference to Guy Fawkes's unsuccessful attempt to destroy the English Houses of Parliament! The other example is the song "Ring around the Roise" which refers to the Bubonic plague. A large section of the lyrics in nursery rhymes today were used to parody the political happenings during those times.
Despite the fact that it has been centuries since those events happened, and the events have no significance in our present world, the stories live on in nursery rhymes today. One importance of nursery rhymes is therefore to help maintain our historical heritage and teach children some of the past historical happenings through nursery rhymes.
Kids Love Listening to Nursery Rhymes
Most kids are very fond of listening to nursery rhymes. The BusSongs site is home to a vast number of popular nursery rhymes listed with brief details on their origins and history. Some of the most popular nursery rhymes include; "The Banana Boat Song (Day-o)". "Hush Little baby". "You are my sunshine". "Jack and Jill" and "Pittypat and Tippytoe". These are some of the most viewed and rated songs on the BusSongs website. These songs have proven to be so popular that they have been passed from generation to generation over the years.
As much as the historical significance and the origins of these songs have become obscure, the lyrics of the nursery rhymes have altered only slightly over infinite re-tellings. This is despite the fact that the English language has evolved greatly over the last 600 years! Nursery rhymes go a long way to educate children in a fun manner and also teach them about some of the past events that shaped the world today.
Another nursery rhyme that has a strong relevance to history is "Oranges and Lemons". which tries to replicate the chimes of many old churches that were once an integral part of London society. "Pussy Cat Pussy Cat" is another children favourite, since it's every child's fantasy to have the chance 'to go up to London to visit the Queen'. And, "Hey Diddle Diddle" is a great bedtime song for kids wherein the cat and the fiddle go to meet the boy.
Nursery Rhymes Have Originated from Historical Happenings or Situations
A large majority of nursery rhymes today have their origins in historical happenings or situations. British politics was in fact very pivotal to the origin of nursery rhymes, which were often used to spread gossip and rumours in references to the monarchs. Each rumour giving information about a particular story's origin, is just another rumour. You may have come cross a number of stories claiming to have the most accurate information regarding the origin, and some of it may not be true other than author names and the earliest publication dates of nursery rhymes.
Another good example of a rhyme that originated centuries ago is "Peter, Peter, Pumpkin Eater".
Peter, Peter, Pumpkin Eater,
Had a wife and couldn't keep her,
Put her in a pumpkin shell,
And there he kept her, very well.
Peter was a poor man married to an unfaithful wife. He wanted to find a way to stop her from cheating on him. He came up with an idea prevalent in those days for men in the same predicament. He got a chastity belt, in this case the pumpkin shell, which was a pair of steel laden underwear with a lock and key. The chastity belt would debar anyone from touching the woman, and only the man with the key (her husband) could.
Knowledge of the English language and English history has helped immensely in the analysis of the origins of nursery rhymes today.
For more songs and information about their origins, check out BusSongs. com.