Humpty Dumpty

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Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall;
All the King's horses and all the King's men,
Couldn't put Humpty together again.

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Information About Humpty Dumpty

Humpty Dumpty is a nursery rhyme where in the character is portrayed to be an egg; however there is no suggestion in the rhyme itself that Humpty Dumpty is an egg. When it was first printed, the rhyme was presented as a riddle and attempts to exploit the fact that "humpty dumpty" also happened to be an eighteenth century reduplicative slang for a diminutive and clumsy person.

Though the origins of the nursery rhyme cannot be proven, the most commonly believed theory is that Humpty Dumpty was a powerful cannon used in the Siege of Colchester during the English Civil War. It was mounted on top of the St Mary's at the Wall Church in Colchester defending the city against siege in the summer of 1648. Although Colchester was a Royalist stronghold, it was besieged by the Roundheads for 11 weeks before finally falling. The church tower was hit by enemy cannon fire and the top of the tower was blown off, sending "Humpty" tumbling to the ground. Naturally all the King's horses and all the King's men (Royalist cavalry and infantry respectively) tried to mend "him" but in vain.

Riddles similar to Humpty Dumpty have been recorded by folklorists in languages other than English. For instance Boule Boule in French or Lille Trille in Norwegian and Swedish. Prior to meaning a "diminutive, clumsy person", "the humpty dumpty" meant a brandy drink boiled using ale.

Another possibility is that Humpty Dumpty was a large cannon located at the top of a church tower at the Siege of Colchester during the English Civil War. "Humpty" crashed to the ground when the church tower was hit by enemy cannon fire.

For kids this rhyme might help teach younger children the significance of reversible and irreversible changes - an egg can be smashed but thereafter you cannot put it back together again.

For any further information about the song "Humpty Dumpty" you may find Wikipedia helpful.

Other versions of the song will use the title, "Humptey Dumptey."

Alternative Lyrics & Related Songs

Here's a Parody

Humptey Dumptey sat on the wall eating black bananas
Where do you think he put the skins?
Down the kings pajamas.

Here's a longer version and tells a more complete story of Humpty

Humptey Dumptey sat on a wall,
Humptey Dumptey had a great fall;
All the King's horses and all the King's men,
Couldn't put Humptey together again.
So off they went to fairyland,
to buy some magic glue,
to fix the toys together again
and Humptey Dumptey too.

Here's another version that ends in fluffy pillows

Humptey Dumptey sat on a wall
Humptey Dumptey had a great fall
All the Kings horses and all the Kings men
Couldn't put Humptey together again.

Then two kids walked t'wards the wall
One so small he only could crawl
Humptey Dumptey was such a good friend
The eldest one took him and put him to bed.

When Mother got home she said "What a mess"
Humptey Dumptey's wounds must be dressed
She bandaged him up until he looked whole
And hoped that next he wouldn't step in a hole.

Humptey Dumptey quickly got well
The children's love was just the right spell
Now Humpty lives in a land full of pillows
So now when he falls he is saved by a pillow.

Here is another version of the song with alternative lyrics in Spanish

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall;
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.
All the King's horses
And all the King's men
Couldn't put Humpty together again!

Humpty Dumpty
Sentado en un muro.
Humpty Dumpty
Se ha caído muy duro.
Todos los caballeros
Y jinetes del rey,
Fueron a levantarlo
Y no pudieron con él.

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall;
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.
Threescore men and threescore more,
Can't place Humpty Dumpty as he was before.

This song has been printed from the website.

  1. BusSongs
  2. Humpty Dumpty

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